#admissions #studyabroad #masterinmanagement
When I first decided to apply for the Master in Management (MiM) programme as a non-European, it wasn’t as easy to find information on European business schools – other than British ones. So as a student blogger at HEC, it felt appropriate to start off with sharing my experience of the admission process.
1. Before applying
MiM is a fairly new concept to Americans, and there aren’t many business schools with this program in the States just yet. In fact, I had to spend some time researching differences between MBA and MiM before making a decision.
I’m based in New York so I had an opportunity to attend a grad school fair, where I got most of information on European business schools – HEC, LBS, Said, you name it. I met with HEC’s recruiter at the tour and had a mini Q&A session with her. If you are unable to attend Open Day or visit HEC campus before, I highly recommend trying these events – we even have online info sessions.
HEC Paris now offers two types of applications – through SAI or directly with the school. SAI allows you to apply to five grandes écoles in France – HEC, ESCP, EMLYON, SKEMA, and Audencia Nantes. I was only interested in HEC, so I applied directly. A word of caution, SAI deadline tends to be earlier than HEC’s.
There is nothing unusual about the application process itself.
- Diploma or Proof of Enrolment (in case you haven’t graduated yet)
- Official transcript, including study abroad
- GMAT / GRE / TAGE MAGE
- TOEIC / TOEFL / IELTS / PTE (waived if you graduated from schools with English as teaching language)
- 2 Letters of Recommendations
HEC Paris being a prestigious school, good GPA and standardised scores are necessary but don’t let these scores keep you away from applying!
If you get to this step, well congratulations! You are only one step away from being an HEC student. Recruiters at HEC are so genuinely interested in helping you that they send you a list of questions with a congratulatory note. Of course an extensive research and prep are required to be ready, but list of questionnaires definitely makes your life easier!
- Why France?
- Why HEC Paris?
- What do you know about the course?
- Why Master in Management? How would MiM help you achieve your goal?
- What are your career ambitions, and how did they arise?
- Why should we admit you / What can you bring to the student body?
Needless to say, you need to be fully aware of your CV as majority of questions are about your background and career goals. Some current issue related questions are also asked, so you better start reading that WSJ or FT (or even The Economist)!
Don’t bring up any topic you’re not ready for! Just because Brexit and Donald Trump are two major topics right now doesn’t mean you have to talk about it. Better pick something you’re confident with than rambling. For me, I talked about Eurozone crisis (I know, very daring). I spent my entire study abroad semester in Madrid studying this, and my minor at undergraduate level focused on international monetary arrangements from gold standard to Bretton Woods to the Euro — in the end, I like to think I did pretty well.
My interview was via Skype, as I was in New York (again, do visit the campus if you can!). There were three interviewers – the Director of Admissions, someone from Ad Comm, and a professor. Sometimes a current student or HEC alumnus might join instead of a professor. They didn’t try to simulate a high-pressure environment of any kind: they were just interested in getting to know me better as a person. It lasted about 45 minutes, covering pretty much everything from my personal background to professional experiences, motives, and so on.
After getting through the interview, well, sit back and be ready to meet some amazing people on campus!