Now before I chart down this treacherous path let me make my disclaimers early! I am not in MLT nor did I apply to MLT. But I know you guys are in the process of considering or drafting applications to MLT Career Prep, which is all fine and dandy. Remember, I’m the biggest ambassador of a plan, so even your consideration of the program symbolizes an interest in b-school enrollment within the next 24 months. I applaud your pluck.
So Me, Myself, and I is two fold. Firstly, I only write to share my opinions, so I’ll give you my assessment, which is largely a hybrid of my beliefs and third-party anecdotes. But as always, we should be informed and I’m going to do my best to extract any bias from my assessment. Secondly, before we submit any MLT applications, let’s see if we can do this process solo with me, myself and I. Recall, I’m talking about, in my opinion, and I repeat this is D’Andre Pierre Carr’s perspective on the programmatic strengths and areas of development of MLT’s MBA Prep program.
And before we start, I guess it would be good to educate the masses who may be reading and don’t know, but MLT is an organization that “equips high potential minorities with the winning playbook and personalized coaching that allows them to reach their full leadership potential and maximize their community impact.” MBA Prep is a MLT program geared towards “helping minority MBA candidates obtain and be successful in fast-track post-MBA jobs.”
MLT Strengths, in my opinion:
- Accountability: the structured nature of the program keeps you responsible for every dimension of the application process from establishing GMAT score minimums prior to applying to rigid essay review along with detailed research of every program. Y’all know I support being informed.
- Network: You get a head start in cultivating your Black MBA Network. This matters especially for people interested in non-Consortium schools, who won’t have a central program to introduce you to your peers. It’s awkward to go to Jumpstart and not know nobody.
- Resources: It offers you a way to become exposed to the schools and current students enrolled at your schools of interest.
Some “Meh” MLT aspects
- Agenda: There’s definitely a pressure towards applying and enrolling at top-5 (really top 3) business’ schools. From what I hear, MLT is definitely not discouraging applying to other schools, but it’s clear there’s a preference. And you can’t be mad! Institutionally, they have their own metrics of success and have a higher power to respond to.
- Delay: I always thought it delayed you a year from the end goal. And the actual MBA application process looks very similar to MLT’s. Why duplicate an effort?
- Did you really upgrade me?: So the point is to enhance the candidacy of minorities applying to top-MBA programs. But a significant percentage of people enrolled in MBA Prep, or significant people who get admitted, have top-MBA program credentials, so I’m still perplexed as to what the tangible value add is?
The aforementioned highlights in my opinion what doesn’t come across on the website.
Now, why I didn’t do it?
Well, not to gas myself, but one thing I know how to do, besides work a choreography like nobody’s business, is career and application planning. I didn’t need the babysitting MLT provides because I was intimately familiar with the graduate school application process. Also, I feel MLT helps people get on track to a particular GMAT score, which is critical. But for most people taking the GMAT, the last standardized test they took was the SAT, which could be between 8 and 10+ years ago. So, it could take some time reacclimating to standardized test taking. I had taken the GRE two years ago in conjunction with being in an academic mind frame from just completing my MPA, so I was mentally ready to quickly and efficiently prep for the GMAT. That’s definitely not the case for most applicants. Lastly, having gone to an undergrad business program, I knew EXACTLY what I wanted in my next rendezvous with a management education at the graduate level and thus didn’t need the burden of additional school researching MLT requires.
Now, do I regret not doing it?
Nah, not really. One thing is MBA Prep is a pipeline to PD (MLT Professional Development), which helps minority MBA candidates obtain and be successful in fast-track post-MBA jobs.” Think of PD as what MLT MBA Prep members graduate to after you gain admission to a school. It’s very difficult to gain admission to PD without having done MBA prep. I didn’t get into PD and I really wanted to get to know people before Consortium or any Pre-MBA diversity program. Because everyone gets to know everyone quickly, so I wanted to get in the mix as early as possible.
Now, should you do it?
Well, me, myself, and I is all I had in the end. But MLT is offering to be your best friend? You have to decide what’s best for you. It’s all about contextualizing your situation. Now, going back to my “No Harvard or Goldman” ideology. If just tuning in, please read. But the “No Harvard or Goldman” people should do it. And the intention is to not shade this group’s preparedness, but there’s a lot to gain from the network and the resources. Exposure is key. Once you’re exposed, you become more informed, and I’m all about being informed in the process. My intention is to not insinuate “Harvard or Goldman” folk shouldn’t do MLT. But let’s objectify a bit. According to the website, MBA Prep is offering “personal clarity, understanding the bar, personalized roadmap, one-on-one coaching, unparalleled business school exposure, skill-building workshops, and high leverage networks.” Now, just playing devils advocate but if “Harvard” and or “Goldman” didn’t provide you all that or facilitate an opportunity for you to utilize those resources, you may want to get a refund from that education (And I consider Goldman education as well).
Ultimately, it’s about having a mature conversation with yourself. Introspectively reflecting, ask “am I hot mess?” “Am I going to leave things to the last minute?” If so, you should drop an application. In addition, if your work schedule is demanding, it’s a good mechanism to keep you on track as well. Work sometimes causes us to delay things we want to achieve so MLT can help caveat that. The process is too costly to proceed through it haphazardly.
In addition, ask yourself is it worth the $750? There’s also pressure to enroll in a GMAT prep class in MLT, so the MBA admissions price sticker gets higher.
IF YOU REALLY BOUT THAT LIFE, and I’ve seen people do this, apply to MLT and b-school concurrently. You need a GMAT score and all the b-school application components to be offered admission to MBA Prep anyway. If you are unsuccessful, MLT can perform an autopsy on your application. If you are successful, you’ve jump started your black-MBA network and have removed a year from your process. But remember, do this only if you about that life. It’s a lot of work!
And of course, I can’t forget this….