|By Reveler (Reveler) on Sunday, September 26, 2004 - 05:59 pm: Edit|
I've read through some posts here and it looks like there is some big rift between people who want to study undergraduate business and those who say that it is useless because most grad schools will take a lberal arts major over a business major.
Others say that the undergraduate business degree is useless since that is why there are MBA programs so that people wishing to get a business knowledge can do so. Some point to the top schools such as Harvard, Yale, Princeton and Duke not having undergraduate business programs because they find them useless since there are MBA's.
Others say the business focus gets people ready for grad school. They will already have a sound knowledge in business and then can hone their skills while in grad school. Some say that undergraduate business is a laid back major compared to some other ones out there.
So should one really major in undergraduate business or major in some liberal arts field?
|By Annieivy (Annieivy) on Sunday, September 26, 2004 - 06:46 pm: Edit|
I have had this conversation with a lot of people who have done well in various businesses. For myself, I've decided against an undergrad business major. First, as you point out, few top schools offer this major. Everyone I've spoken to encouraged me to go to the best school I can get into to be attractive to top MBA programs. Second, I've come to understand that you are shallow in terms of knowledge if you only study business. When you look at who runs companies, it is often someone with knowledge of the product and business. So engineer/MBAs often run technology companies, scientist/MBAs life science companies and clothing designer/MBA retail companies. Even in service industries such as consulting, investment banking, etc., having expertise in the areas you serve is highly desireable.
The only reason I could see doing an undergrad business major is if you don't plan to get an MBA, want to be something like an accountant or are not very ambitious in terms of wanting a job that requires more education.
Can you change the name of this thread so more people will reply? It's an interesting subject.
|By Alan5 (Alan5) on Sunday, September 26, 2004 - 06:49 pm: Edit|
There is a third way. Why not double major in business and liberal arts and add internship/co-op experience to the mix. Here's what you will get:
1. A well rounded liberal arts education;
2. Solid business skills which will put you ahead of your classmates in grad school, or if you choose not to go to grad school, you will have some marketable skills;
3. Practical experience gained through an internship/co-op at a top company and a nice resume to boot. Most of the top MBA programs value internships and employers certainly do. Many of the top companies only hire former interns/co-ops.
This is the academic model of the future which some schools have already incorporated into their curriculum.
|By Snuffles (Snuffles) on Sunday, September 26, 2004 - 07:33 pm: Edit|
It is debatable on what is considered a well-rounded liberal arts education. It is true that co-ops can be of great use and experience, but not all co-ops are created equally. Most of the progress depends on the student themselves and their motivational levels. One can be extremely successful and derive a great deal from a co-op, but there are also duds in the same place. It is also a point that co-ops can draw time and energy away from the 4-year curriculum, in a sense shortening the exposure one gets in a traditional setting.
|By Reveler (Reveler) on Sunday, September 26, 2004 - 07:36 pm: Edit|
very true and yestried to switch the topic name but it doesn't work. The name of this thread was typed by accident that is my user name and apparently I typed too fast or was unaware that my username ended up becoming the name of this thread.
However, you could point out that business majors who studied business at the undergradte level have done well. Babson College has produced some successful people. As far as I know the guy who started the Home Deport and the head of Serono recieved undergraduate degrees from their. They are both billioanires and the school is entirely devoted to business. I think they have had some other CEO's or something too.
Mark Cuban the Dallas Mavericks owner, billionaire and now the reality t.v. star went to I believe Indiana University's undergraduate business school. Yes Michael Dell studied computers I'm guessing and so did Bill Gates.
The University of Pennsylvania Wharton school has the Donald as one of their graduates. He seems to be doing just fine paying the bills.
In terms of graduate school I see how most MBA programs want some well rounded people so they will know students will have both a well-rounded liberal arts education as well as a specific business education.
One can look at it the other way around. If a student has business skills the MBA program might ask themselves maybe he can hone these already learned skills to something more. Maybe he will have a leg up on the other students because although he will not have a well-rounded liberal arts education he will have an increased level of business knowledge that can be applied in many different areas of business and in various jobs as well.
There are many people that are in the top 5% tax bracket out there who studied business and there are many who did not.
So we still don't know should that be a yes study undergraduate business or no.
However, it seems there are also plenty of other people who studied business as undergraduates who were successful in terms of monetary wealth and also in terms of getting into top graduate schools.
|By Annieivy (Annieivy) on Sunday, September 26, 2004 - 07:56 pm: Edit|
Well Reveler, while it is certainly true that business leaders come from all over, there are facts pointing to certain places as being more likely to have produced them. We know that top MBA programs take a disproportionate number of students from the very top colleges. We also know that the top MBA programs produce a hugely disproportionate number of those earning in the top 2%. We further know that some schools (top ones) produce way more F500 CEOs than others. I don't think it's a big mystery that going to an ivy league college followed by a top business school has been the most certain bet.
|By Reveler (Reveler) on Sunday, September 26, 2004 - 08:08 pm: Edit|
yes very good point Ms. Ivy. Having known from personal experience my family is in the top 1/2% or 1%. In my family however, my father didn't go to a top college for undergraduate or graduate partly because he couldn't afford it. That serves as a perfect example, that has shown to me that one doesn't need the top graduate school to earn the top $.
Another sure fire bet is go to a decent school for undergraduate and do very well. If business is your industry or planned field of study then go to a specialty business school or a highly ranked business school on the undergraduate level which in most cases happen to very good well-rounded schools as well.
You say the most certain bet is going to an ivy league college followed by a top business school. Makes sense and is valid but hold that for a second. What happens if a 4.0 from the University of Michigan honors program or 4.0 from a non-ivy but well-respected business school goes for the MBA spot vs. and Ivy Leaguer. Hmmm.. things get a little tricky now.
I know many people who have gone the Babson B.A. Harvard M.B.A. route. While others choose the Stanford B.A. Columbia M.B.A. combination. I know one story that proved very succesful for an individual who chose the former and another who chose the latter combination.
So Ivy league undergrad surely helps but when compared to a University of Michigan Honors Program Undergraduate with a 4.0 the statement gets a little tricky.
|By Alan5 (Alan5) on Sunday, September 26, 2004 - 08:13 pm: Edit|
A word about co-ops and internships:
It is true that not all co-ops/internships are created equally (depends on the college, company and the motivation of the individual student). By the way, Co-ops and internships are basically the same except that most co-ops are paid (some very well). Some of the most prestigious companies offer both types of positions. Virtually every school offers some kind of off campus program now, including the ivies and some many of the top LACs. Co-ops and internships do not take away from the college experience; rather they can compliment academics by allowing students to share what they have learned in the real world with their classmates. However, the best thing about co-ops/internships is that it helps you decide what in want in a career. Many students spend four years in college reading books and listening to lectures about the theoretical aspects of their particular major, but have no concept of what is like to practice in their field. After graduating and working in that field, they may discover that they despise that kind of work. Co-op/and internships basically allow you to test the waters while you're still in school, which is a lot safer from an economic standpoint. Plus having some work experience on your resume will give you a huge edge when applying for postgraduate positions in today's super competitive job market. Futher, as mentioned above, many of the top grad schools value applicants with co-op/internship experience.
|By Annieivy (Annieivy) on Sunday, September 26, 2004 - 08:32 pm: Edit|
My brother is at Harvard B school now. I just called and asked him how many in his class went to Babson. He doesn't know of any, but promised to check. Mich is a pretty top school, and certainly a very top State school. He knew of 2 Mich classmates but thinks there are probably a few more. Where did those on his dorm floor come from? Princeton (2), Dartmouth (2), Harvard (2),
Berkeley (1), Yale (1), Wisconsin (1), Brown (1). Now remember all of these guys have worked for several years and had to have had pretty great jobs. Where do top companies tend to recruit from?
Look, there are as many successful guys like your dad as there are my dad (Harvard, Harvard B). But if the question is where to go to school to maximize your chances and choices are open to you, I don't think any statistics would point to Babson as a contender to the ivys.
|By Reveler (Reveler) on Sunday, September 26, 2004 - 09:28 pm: Edit|
yeah they won't. It is just I guess a school that has had some similar results but on a whole perspective there are other options that are probably better. The statistics definetely won't point to it if it is compared against the ivy's but some of its graduates and entreprenuership program (if that is what one wants to do) might.
So lets do this litle comparo shall we:
Graduate from a decent but not great place. Say a University of Maryland type or something comparable to that with internships from Credit Suisse First Boston, Merril Lynch, Citigroup and J.P. Morgan.
Harvard graduate with nothing
I think the Harvard applicant will loose out. Now we can start the Harvard candidate would have a better chance of getting those internships yada, yada, yada... and so this situation won't happen. However, it does. WIth this little example say that this candidate from the ordinary school had the internships and this graduate from Harvard didn't (you can say someone from Harvard would have to but lets just say in this case they don't)
We know who wins.
yeah I just stick by the philosophy that one doesn't need to go to Harvard. AnnieIvy good your dad went to Harvard feel proud of him. He maximized his chances maybe as much as possible and it seems as if though things have worked pretty well for him. Since my father didn't go to Ivy's or Top 25's and I wouldn't be surprised if it wasn't a Tier I (I know people might feel insulted when talk shifts off of Tier I) and he has still accomplished what he has I think that is the guide for me.
This is because this is what I have experienced first hand. You on the other hand have experienced the Ivy's in your family. That is why your bias would be towards the Ivy's and you probably are right with what you say about the options deal. I don't think they mean much and I have my own bias based on what I have seen first hand with my family.
So I guess its up to you and I sure didn't go to an Ivy and am comfortable among the top 1/2% and you going to Harvard have increased your chances to do the same. You can't ask for more but sometimes the underdogs win.
|By Annieivy (Annieivy) on Sunday, September 26, 2004 - 09:41 pm: Edit|
Reveler, actually I disagree with you on several fronts. When my Dad and yours went to college, they were not meritocracies. If your Dad couldn't afford it and mine could, they were not on equal ground. That ground is much more equal today. There is a strong arguement today that your Dad did better than mine by far, it was hard for mine not to do extremely well with his Harvard degrees and connections. Your Dad clearly did it all on his own. But those today who are the go getters are likely to have shown their stripes in HS, and will go to a top college. Money an issue? There's Berkeley, UVA, Umich, merit monet at just below the top tier, etc. I forget the name of the study that is being talked about on another thread, but what it shows is that you don't have to go to a top college to be highly successful, but you are much more likely to be if you got accepted at top colleges.
But education is the great divider in the Country today. American class is said to be determined more by education than by family background now. The kid from U Maryland, without connections, simply won't have anywhere near the job options as the kid from Harvard. Sad but totally true. Will some fighters defy the odds and get to JP Morgan? Sure. But honestly, check investment banking web sites, you'd be hard pressed to find anything but the rare exception from schools outside of the top. Simply, you will then have to totally defy the odds. It is doable, but exceptional.
|By Annieivy (Annieivy) on Sunday, September 26, 2004 - 09:48 pm: Edit|
And Reveler, your Dad makes millions a year being in the top one-half percent. Convince him it's a great investment for generations to come to give just one million dollars to the college of your choice! You, your kids, their kids.....will all benefit.
|By Reveler (Reveler) on Sunday, September 26, 2004 - 10:39 pm: Edit|
I know sometimes I do sit there in amazement. Not because of money but because of what it took. To worry about application fees to go from that point where $70 is something to be concerned about to living in a number of different multi-million dollar homes is something incredible. To be able to go out and buy a $200,000 car without having to think twice is something not everyone can do and some may never see that amount of money in their entire lives
Yes, my father may have done better then yours. Although yours went to Harvard and had the connections and all the other factors, mine came from pretty far down. You know what the beauty is its not even about that.
Sure investment banking companies will be filled with those Harvard grads. Sure chances are that now a days you will be lucky to find a non-Ivy or Top 25 graduate in an executive position at an investment bank. However, there will Always be people who defy the odds. Now since the odds are getting lower and lower it makes their accomplishments even more glorified.
What happens if I started a cereal shop where a person can walk into the store and get 3 bowls of cereal for only 3 dollars vs. going to the store and buying a box for 4 dollars. Sensing the next Starbucks craze?
If the guy who started Starbucks can go from Northern Michigan University to where he is now anyone can. You are right when you say the odds are not in your favor but so what. If someone can make it that successful to the point where Harvard grads won't even see the amount of money he's worth in their lifetime there will always be exceptions.
It's about seeing the Harvard gradutes making it in life. Seeing that their hardwork and motivation has helped them in life. Something to be even more amazed is to see people who start off pretty far down and go to the top where some of the elite won't reach.
Inheritance helps the cause. But to take 1 million and turn into a billion isn't something everyone can do.
So all the late bloomers or people who don't apply themselves in high school out there don't worry that you won't make it in life. Your success will be that much sweeter.
What happens if you come up with some idea like Starbucks, or Beanie Babies, or Napster, or Ebay or Staples well you will have made it pretty well for yourself.
I'm also proof that non-ivy grads fare just fine. Granted more of my type will be harder to come by people like me will always be there!
|By Annieivy (Annieivy) on Sunday, September 26, 2004 - 10:54 pm: Edit|
What do you do reveler? Where do you go to school? How did you get where you got? You've told us your Dad is wealthy, did he not help?
|By Reveler (Reveler) on Sunday, September 26, 2004 - 11:45 pm: Edit|
He did. I'm telling you inheritance does help at least in my situation it did.
I currently own a real-estate company in New York. Previously a few years back I created a formula that I patented and sold. On the side I invest money into real-estate projects such as apartment buildings, plazas, condominiums etc...
I like to think of myself as a small scale Donald Trump. A businessman whose passion and vision are appealing to others. Yes Donald did loose just about everything he had but he got it back. I find that even more remarkable. We both happen to share the real-estate industry in this case and do our own stuff on the side.
Right now I'm working on a cereal store start up and have invested some money in additional projects.
So that is basically what I do.
|By Fresca (Fresca) on Monday, September 27, 2004 - 12:31 am: Edit|
Reveler, I've followed your posts about your "nephew", and I have a hard time believing you are who you say. Were you a businessman, you would have to have known how bad your nephew's essays were, and been able to correct his very immature views of business. Your writing is not that of a learned professional. Your questions about where one should go to school and naive thoughts about underdogs winning are not the views of an accomplished adult. Cereal stores? Please! Reveler is a high school kid who will apply to Babson!!
|By Annieivy (Annieivy) on Monday, September 27, 2004 - 12:32 am: Edit|
Interesting stuff! Where did you go to college?
|By Alexandre (Alexandre) on Monday, September 27, 2004 - 01:53 am: Edit|
My recommendation is to major in a liberal arts field unless you are passionate about studying Business. It really depends on what you want.
If you want to work for a consulting firm or an investment bank when you are done with college, majoring in a Liberal Arts field from a top university will probably be more beneficial to you than getting a Business degree.
However, if your goal is to work for a large Fortune 500, manufacturing company, like Procter and Gamble or Ford, you are probably better off majoring in Business.
As for MBA programs, most top MBA programs expect 4-6 years of work experience these days and usually admit as many Engineering and Social Sciences majors are Business majors. So any of those three fields is going to be evenly represented.
Most Business schools do not share many of the stats, but I did get Wharton to share. Here are the numbers for last year, out of a class of 810 admitted students:
UNDERGRADUATE INSITUTIONS ATTENDED:
49 University of Pennsylvania
33 Harvard University
27 Stanford University
23 Cornell University
19 Duke University
15 University of California-Berkeley
15 University of Michigan-Ann Arbor
15 University of Virgnia
14 Dartmouth College
14 Yale University
(notice how so far, 7 of the 10 most popular undergraduate schools do not even offer Business as a major to undergrads)
13 Columbia University
12 Massachusetts Institute of Technology
11 University of Chicago
10 Brown University
9 Georgetown University
8 University of California-Los Angeles
7 New York University
6 Northwestern University
Notice how 330 out of the 810 (over 40%) entering students got their undergraduate degrees from those 18 top universities above. The remaining 60% come from over 200 universities.
31% Social Sciences
Some people apply to top universities. If one of those top schools happens to have an undergraduate Business program, they apply to it. If not, they simply apply to the college of Arts and Sciences.
|By Reveler (Reveler) on Monday, September 27, 2004 - 07:28 am: Edit|
my good ol college years are history. Fresca please my college years were some 15 years ago. I went to the University of Richmond in Richmond,VA.
Please don't underestimate my ideas of a cereal store when they clearly have some plans for expansion in the near future. Fresca the underdogs were used as an example. However, not as a source of my thinking but in that scenario one could label the certain group as underdogs.
Reason for the essays is I don't have much time to look them over. Being busy with new projects I barely have the time to sleep. I referred it to people on this board to see if they would be of any help.
Fresca you will learn about the business world if that is what you intend to study very soon.
|By Shyboy13 (Shyboy13) on Monday, September 27, 2004 - 05:23 pm: Edit|
You know, I have been hearing people say that it is better to major in something other than business for quite some time and have been somewhat disturbed by this. It seems that all of the top jobs in business for undergrads require (or at least look for) degrees in business, econ (a social science), finance, or accounting. I was recently in the job market and found this to be the case. Just take a look in the classified ads. For recruitment at UCLA and USC, the main majors the recruiters wanted were Business Economics and Business Administration respectively. Even the econ students felt left out in the cold at these schools. Then again, I am only talking about jobs in accounting, finance, consulting, I-Bankning, etc. I know that Goldman Sachs encouraged people from other majors to apply but very few other companies wanted to even look at your resume if you didnít major in business. I have found very few jobs that look for liberal arts majors in campus recruiting or in the classified ads.
As far as B-school goes, cant anyone see that the most represented major is in fact business from the info that Alexandre posted above? In my experience from researching B-schools, it seems as though business (along with econ and engineering) is always a VERY represented undergraduate major.
I am not trying to argue with people right now. I just want to know why everyone says to major in the liberal arts when I see no good reason to do so unless you like the subject or you like what you can do with the degree (e.g. teach, get an advanced degree in the subject, or getting a job that requires the specific degree). Can someone please point this out to me? Please donít respond with isolated cases in trying to prove the importance of a liberal arts degree because exceptions donít ever prove a rule.
Again, I am not trying to argue with people; I truly want to know why people always say not to major in business as an undergrad. What basis do people have for making a statement like this?
|By Annieivy (Annieivy) on Monday, September 27, 2004 - 05:41 pm: Edit|
I don't think a liberal arts major is the best for undergrad, from everything I'm told it's science or engineering. This gives you great depth and access to the most desireable jobs top MBAs go after: investment banking, venture capital, management consulting, jobs at technology and life science companies. In you want to be an accountant, sure, major in accounting! But those are not the jobs wanted by ambitious MBAs. The types of jobs Shyboy seems to be talking about for UCLA biz grads are not on the future senior executive track is my guess. So it really depends on what you want.
The numbers poste by Alexandre are Whartons, and are quite different at other B schools. Harvard B school has many fewer undergrad biz majors. I think Wharton's number is so much higher because they take so many of their own undergrads and because of it's highly quantative focus. Chicago is closeer to Wharton, but Stanford has the most poets of all and is still the most selective B school.
|By Shyboy13 (Shyboy13) on Monday, September 27, 2004 - 06:52 pm: Edit|
"UCLA biz grads are not on the future senior executive track is my guess. So it really depends on what you want."
Correct, I was talking about entry-level positions because I was talking about campus recruiting. I would think that future senior executives would need an MBA. So I still am wondering whats up with not majoring in business.
|By Reveler (Reveler) on Monday, September 27, 2004 - 07:21 pm: Edit|
I studied business as an undergraduate. No complaints from me.
|By Alan5 (Alan5) on Monday, September 27, 2004 - 07:21 pm: Edit|
The truth of the matter is that Liberal Arts majors are a dime a dozen (thousands of these people enter the job market every year). People who really stand out are those you have double majored (e.g. liberal arts and a preprofessional field) and have internship/co-op experience at a top company.
|By Barrons (Barrons) on Monday, September 27, 2004 - 07:37 pm: Edit|
If you go to one of the Top 20 schools and do well, then you have a shot at the IB and bigtime consulting jobs if that is what you want. However those jobs are VERY cutthroat and only the toughest and often most ruthless get to stay past 3 years. If you want a normal job with normal hours with a good company like 3M or P&G or a commercial bank, then you have a much better shot with a business degree from a good school. Many of their people get MBAs in night or other special programs.
|By Annieivy (Annieivy) on Monday, September 27, 2004 - 07:45 pm: Edit|
Call me a nut Barrons, but I aspire to one of those jobs. I know a lot of people who are not ruthless or cutthroat that are grads of top B schools and loving every minute of those exciting careers. So I'm going with engineering undergrad to hopefully a top 5 B school with hopes of being a venture capitalist.
|By Monydad (Monydad) on Monday, September 27, 2004 - 08:22 pm: Edit|
Almost all the VPs I worked with in investment banking in NYC had undergraduate liberal arts degrees, followed by a top school MBA. I can only recall one fellow who had an engineering degree undergrad. Oh wait, two.
Written proposals and oral presentations were a very important part of our work. Engineers don't get trained for that, mostly. Mathematical facility was very important, but only at the arithmetic level for the most part. Above all, interpersonal skills and fit were key. And willingness to work endlessly.
Venture capital may be much different,however,especially in CA.
|By Annieivy (Annieivy) on Monday, September 27, 2004 - 08:51 pm: Edit|
For venture capital you need to bring the ability to analyze potential investments. Traditionally the majority were BSEE/MBAs. Now there are many MD/MBAs and Science masters and PhD/MBAs.
|By Reveler (Reveler) on Monday, September 27, 2004 - 10:20 pm: Edit|
I did business undergraduate and graduate. I don't need the cut throat environment and I've enjoyed some well-deserved success myself. So those flashy Investment Bankers may get the money but what they sacrifice Annieivy is so much more.. Think long and hard. Working 15 hour days. Getting up at 5 going to the office coming back at 11 doing it all over again. I just simply didn't want to live that kind of life style. So I decided that I would venture on my own. I get up whenver I want and go to sleep whenever I want. Just my view of things.
Perhaps start your own business like I did. I worked hard to start it up but never did 10 hour days. I enjoy the fruitful success without working 13 hour days. I prefer that much more then getting up at 5 a.m. and not coming home until 11. I think compared to many investment bankers I'm doing pretty well so you dcide whats good for you. For me its hardwork then relaxation.
|By Annieivy (Annieivy) on Monday, September 27, 2004 - 10:31 pm: Edit|
I want to be a VC, much different than ibanking. That could well lead to starting my own company at some point. My older brother was an investment banker for several years before going back for his MBA. He absolutely loved it, long hours and all. It's not just the money (and for a 25 year old he made an unbelievable living), it really is varied and intellectual.
My Dad has started 3 companies. He works much more than 15 hours most days, in fact he works harder than anyone I've seen. Also loves it. I guess we're all just type A workaholics!
|By Barrons (Barrons) on Monday, September 27, 2004 - 11:04 pm: Edit|
Enjoy it I guess. You never get back those years and my wife who nursed the dying rich in the North Shore area of Chicago said they all wished they had spent more time with family/friends and less at work. Each to his own. I'd rather spend my weekends and evenings either at home or out having fun. Life IS short and there is no replay.
|By Annieivy (Annieivy) on Monday, September 27, 2004 - 11:41 pm: Edit|
It is very individual. I have a hard time thinking I could get real satisfaction from a nine to five. I think, however, there will be times in my life when I won't work at all to make family a priority, as my Mom did.
In my family everyone is included in the companies. This summer I traveled through Asia with my father getting to participate in his company's activities. We brainstorm products at the dinner table. Everyone has some role in the foundation my Mom runs. Hard to explain, but we all enjoy living business.
|By Bigjake587 (Bigjake587) on Thursday, September 30, 2004 - 03:16 am: Edit|
Ok, hold on for a second. I can agree with the fact that if someone, say, wants to attain a top management position at an engineering company, he would obviously have to know about engineering and most likely start out as a regular worker with ambitions. But annieivy, you said that majoring in liberal arts and receiving that education in science or engineering is exactly what investment banks are looking for?? Since when does investment banking require knowledge of either of those two subjects? Out of everything, it would appear that students wishing to pursue investment banking or other finance-oriented careers would want to major in undergraduate business because these fields require, in one word, BUSINESS! An undergrad business school would give one the edge over liberal arts majors when applying to grad school. Furthermore,a student interested in finance would probably wish to take part in a few internships while studying undergrad business. One of these companies might very well be the company that hires him or her straight out of college and even pays for their MBA education later on. And, you are telling me that, undergrad business majors do not have an advantage over liberal arts majors who have no idea what they wish to do with their lives when it comes to internships? Why would a company hire someone who might possibly quit in a few months? Undergrad business, on the other hand, shows commitment in my opinion.
Obviously, if it comes down to it, I would choose Harvard undergrad over, say, U Arizona business. But, if it came down to harvard liberal arts and Wharton or even Harvard vs. NYU Stern, I would choose the undergrad business.
Honestly, I think people should just stick to the definitions. If you don't know what you want to do - and there is nothing wrong with that - attend a liberal arts college. If you know you want to pursue business as a career, then just go for undergrad business. Don't get caught up in this logic of "i want to do business but maybe i should do liberal arts because statistics show that..." You get the idea.
On a side note, Reveler....what exactly does your dad do? I am very interested in the rags-to-riches stories and I hope to be the subject of one some day, and you keep talking about this "1/2%" and "$200,000 cars" yet you don't actually state what your dad's job is. Please share. And please respond to my ideas because, as someone applying to Wharton, I want to know everything there is no about the pros and cons of undergrad business
|By Sokkermom (Sokkermom) on Thursday, September 30, 2004 - 08:14 am: Edit|
Does anyone else get at least mildly disturbed by the fact that an adult(?) continues to post on this board under the pretense of being a 17 year old student who will settle for nothing less than an Ivy education? This is the same adult(?) that was purportedly conducting "research" for some educational pursuit? I know that this is an anonymous board, but I find it somewhat disturbing that there are folks out there who misrepresent themselves for some strange reason.
In my humble opinion, that completely defies the honesty and integrity side of the equation that is very important to the real students (and parents) who use this board to gain information about college choices and admissions. For many students, honesty and integrity will be much more important to them in the long run than the sheer quest of status, "prestige" or wealth. I don't think that posting under false pretenses is fair to anyone using this board for its intended purpose. I interpret that to be the sharing of accurate and truthful information.
|By Monydad (Monydad) on Thursday, September 30, 2004 - 11:20 am: Edit|
Bigjake587, you may be correct from the viewpoint of many employers, but not for investment banks. At least not in the real investment banking functions of these firms, at the highest level.
These firms want the smartest people they can find, with the "right" personality profile- urbane, educated, aggressive, smooth, thriving under pressure, eager to work long hours, etc.
Almost all people who make VP there have MBAs, and these empoyers expect the relevant technical part of their training to be obtained in their MBA program. They don't need it undergrad too, particularly if this duplicate focus means they can't write as well as they otherwise could have learned to write, or aren't as knowledgeable about a broad range of fields besides business. Remember these people spend a lot of time hobnobbing with clients in social settings,and need to look smart generally, not be just a unidimensional technical drone.(No offense...)
As for undergrad hiring, mostly these jobs go to liberal arts graduates from very top schools. Maybe these people do need to have some basic relevant econ & math courses, but they can major in anything. Wharton people can also be found, but not diproportionately. The undergrads typically work 2-3 years then go back to school for an MBA.
These are my observations from having worked in this area. I just don't want misinformation to crop up here.
|By Carolyn (Carolyn) on Thursday, September 30, 2004 - 12:19 pm: Edit|
post edited by poster.
|By Bigjake587 (Bigjake587) on Thursday, September 30, 2004 - 03:16 pm: Edit|
Moneydad, thanks for sharing.
I don't think you are right about the "unidimensional technical drone" aspect of undergrad business. First of all, and correct me if I'm wrong, from my conversations with business people, business school does not give you the actual "technical" aspects that an engineering school would, for example. Once you are hired, you have to get trained in the field you are working in. In investment banking, this would mean working under the guidance of senior executives for the first couple of years. Thus, I do not think anyone could get techincal skills in business school. But it would set a foundation that employers could build upon. How is a liberal arts major more valuable to a business firm than a business major provided they are coming from the same school tier?
Second, from what I know about undergraduate business, it is not just unilaterally focused on business courses. There is a heavy concentration on liberal arts especially during the first two years of school, with more and more specialization occurring as one nears graduation. I have a friend who is a freshman at Stern, and he is not even taking any real business courses. The freshman curriculum only allows for two classes. Finance, economics, and management comes much later. The rest of his classes are liberal arts.
Furthermore, i have to disagree with you. Just being in a liberal arts college does not mean that you will be well rounded and knowledgeable in all aspects of life. This depends on the person. I am a senior in high school right now. My favorite courses are history and math, and I want to do business as a career, but that does not stop me from getting excellent grades in science, english, and foreign language and learning these subjects in and out. I am by nature a person who is interested in a wide variety of subjects. Undergrad business won't stop me from enhancing my general knowledge. But, at the same time, I think that i know what i want to do with my life and wish to get a head start.
Actually, what you mentioned was a big concern of mine initially. I thought, "so what, i won't be able to take any liberal arts courses? Am i just isolating myself in a particular field if i choose undergrad business?" But after doing research and visiting schools, I see that the opportunity to combine liberal arts with undergrad business is readily available almost everywhere.
|By Mom102 (Mom102) on Thursday, September 30, 2004 - 03:48 pm: Edit|
First, majoring in accounting has been tradionally a great springboard for many jobs and opportunities. Accounting firms, finance firms,investment houses and consulting firms like accounting grads. Even major corporation are using accounting grads for their management intern programs.
Notice I am not espousing the benefits of an undergraduate business school. I am only saying that if you major in accounting, you will have a large number of opportunities open up for you. This is especially true post Enron.Accounting may, in fact, open up the most opportunities among that of any undergraduate major.
Second, Finance grads and economic grads also have some great opportunities. However, with economics, you generally need at least a masters to see the better opportunities.
Third, Science grads do indeed have great opportunities and can even get some of the better paying initial jobs. Science grads do, however, level out in salary, while accounting and finance majors can make a lot more over a period of time.
Fourth, if you are going to law school, your major is irrelevant. I am an attorney. We had all kinds of majors in law school. Law schools seem to only care about how high your LSAT score was and how high your GPA was period!
Fifth, as for MBA, I have seen people go into good MBA programs as both undergraduate business majors and from liberal arts. Personally, I think that if you major in business as an undergraduate, you don't need an MBA UNLESS you are aiming for an academic career with a PHD in Business.
Personally, I feel that a liberal arts background gives a sold foundation for developing good thinking and logic skills. However, I certainly wouldn't object if my kids majored in accounting or finance. As someone noted, many of the better schools that do offer these majors also provide a well-rounded education.
|By Reveler (Reveler) on Thursday, September 30, 2004 - 04:00 pm: Edit|
My father is also an owner of a real estate company in New York and he has many many investments. Examples would be properties, stocks, and he develops start up companies on the side that sometimes turn into corporations if the situation is right.
So that is what we do.
|By Teal (Teal) on Friday, October 01, 2004 - 12:41 am: Edit|
How does majoring in finance differ with majoring in accounting in terms of job types and opportunities, classes, and any other relevant factors? Is one considered more challenging than the other? I'm asking since I can't really find a huge difference between the two
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