I got an MBA from a top school six years ago. Was it worth it?

Or is it just an expensive seal of approval?

Adulting in your 30s


Why an MBA?

In 2014, I felt stuck. I had been in the same “good” job since graduating from college, but I wasn’t excited about what I was doing. I felt unmotivated, like the thing I spend most of waking hours doing is quite pointless.

And so, I made myself a resolution. I was either going to move to New York with my job (maybe a change of scenery would change how I feel?) or I would get my MBA like I had always loosely planned (I had taken my GMAT the year after college, and the score was about the expire).

The thing is, the plan to get an MBA was never a plan, per se. It was an idea of something I was supposed to do as part of the proper Asian American dream path. I didn’t think about why I wanted an MBA, or what I would do with it. I thought having an MBA in itself would solve my problems.

And, the truth is, I had no idea how to find a different job. I got my first job during collect through a standardized on campus recruiting process. I hadn’t interviewed in over five years, and what’s more, I didn’t know what I wanted to do.

So the MBA was more an escape than anything. An expensive escape.

Let’s move to New York!

In the end, my transfer to New York came through faster than I expected, so I said yes to the move (I had always wanted to live in New York!), and a few weeks into settling into my new life, I got a large packet in the mail.

I had been admitted to a top business school.

It would requireme to move to Chicago.

I should have been excited, but that wasn’t how I felt. I felt torn. Now I have to decide — do I want to live out my New York dream, or do I take this once in a lifetime opportunity to go to a top business school? (I assumed I wasn’t going to take the GMAT and to apply to school again.)

Perhaps I should have sat down and written an extensive pros and cons list. Or I should have talked to people who have their MBA, or think about what I actually want to do with an MBA.



Adulting in your 30s

Musings and self reflections of a 30 something who feels like an adult but a kid at the same time