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JD/MBA at U of T without previous business courses

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Hi guys, I am thinking of applying to the JD/MBA program at U of T next cycle, unfortunately I did not take many business related courses during my undergrad apart from a few introductory economic classes all of which I aced,  will this be detrimental to my chances? I have experience working for a Canadian bank and was the treasurer for student society for a few years and during my gap year I have a job lined up working for an insurance firm. 

Edited by 902
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I doubt it would be detrimental to your chances. The "How Rotman Admissions Decisions Are Made" section of their website mentions they value diversity and welcome applicants from a variety of academic backgrounds. Much of what you learn in an MBA program is similar to an undergraduate business degree anyway (where I did my BCom some classes were exactly the same).

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If you have good work and/or volunteer experience (leadership or managerial positions, etc.), not having a business background will not hurt your chances.

 

As an aside, I've often heard that a MBA isn't really worth it (from a knowledge-gaining perspective) for people with undergraduate business degrees; a lot of the courses in an MBA program are very similar, if not identical, to those that one would take in a BComm or BBA program.

Edited by r3arden
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No one cares. Pick something you like and study the wheels off of it. Try to get published within the university.

 

I did Phil. and languages (ending circa mid 2000s ) at U of T and competed just fine with all the generic Commerce degrees out there in Canada.

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From personal experience, I have met several recent JD/MBA students who have not had business backgrounds.

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To get into the JD/MBA program you need to be independently admitted to the JD and to the MBA programs. The MBA application is the same as for any other student, save that they waive the work requirement for JD applicants and they might waive the MCAT if your LSAT is high enough. That last detail is just something that stuck in my brain from somewhere. Don't trust me on that.

 

Anyway, the major point is that when it comes to educational background you're in the same boat as anyone else. Your question is best answered by looking at any other MBA applicant. Many do not come from business backgrounds. The MBA takes in all sorts. So no, I don't think you'd be at a disadvantage. It's relatively common.

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To get into the JD/MBA program you need to be independently admitted to the JD and to the MBA programs. The MBA application is the same as for any other student, save that they waive the work requirement for JD applicants and they might waive the MCAT if your LSAT is high enough. That last detail is just something that stuck in my brain from somewhere. Don't trust me on that.

 

Anyway, the major point is that when it comes to educational background you're in the same boat as anyone else. Your question is best answered by looking at any other MBA applicant. Many do not come from business backgrounds. The MBA takes in all sorts. So no, I don't think you'd be at a disadvantage. It's relatively common.

 

That's some business school =D 

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My understanding was that Rotman used to waive the GMAT requirement for law students with an LSAT above a certain percentile. Practically, the percentile was so low that virtually all U of T law students qualified. However, looking at Rotman's website today, it looks like they now explicitly waive the GMAT for all law students.

 

"New in 2014: GMAT waiver now available for all Law students. If you have applied to the University of Toronto Faculty of Law, you do not need to submit a GMAT score as part of your Rotman application. We do recommend that candidates consider taking the exam (even after being accepted) as it could open up the possibilities for additional scholarships and contribute to a more competitive profile for post-MBA recruitment. Please note that the GMAT waiver only stands if you are eventually accepted to and enroll [sic] at U of T Law."

From: https://www.rotman.utoronto.ca/Degrees/MastersPrograms/JointDegrees/JDMBA/AdmissionCriteria.aspx

 

As noted by Rotman, taking the GMAT anyway can be useful to access additional scholarship money (though I don't know about recruitment benefits). 

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Just to confirm I just got admitted into the JD/MBA program with an arts background and they waived the GMAT for me.

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Just to confirm I just got admitted into the JD/MBA program with an arts background and they waived the GMAT for me.

 

Can we ask, what your stats were for both sides?

Edited by wanderingINabsentia

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If you have good work and/or volunteer experience (leadership or managerial positions, etc.), not having a business background will not hurt your chances.

 

As an aside, I've often heard that a MBA isn't really worth it (from a knowledge-gaining perspective) for people with undergraduate business degrees; a lot of the courses in an MBA program are very similar, if not identical, to those that one would take in a BComm or BBA program.

 

That's what I used to think; before I actually completed an MBA.

 

It's like saying a tricycle and a motorcycle are the same machine.

 

Both have two wheels and require balance to propel it forward.

 

There's numerous articles and posts explaining the difference and the value prop of an MBA.

 

There's also the counter articles and posts explaining how an MBA isn't necessary.

 

You can read, pick a side and stick with it. Or, complete one and then make up your mind.

 

Lots of options.

 

:)

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As an aside, I've often heard that a MBA isn't really worth it (from a knowledge-gaining perspective) for people with undergraduate business degrees; a lot of the courses in an MBA program are very similar, if not identical, to those that one would take in a BComm or BBA program.

This is generally true if you're speaking from chiefly a knowledge perspective.

 

My undergrad is in business and I had the option of going into an MBA program or an MSc Management and I decided to go the MSc route. The MBA courses were essentially identical to my undergrad, including the capstone project (which I also had to do as part of an honours degree) and I didn't really feel like spending another year or two doing the same stuff as undergrad. Unless you really, really wanted the "MBA" initials after your name, it would be a waste of time. Plus, the MSc has been getting more notoriety in the business world over the last few years.

 

Really, the MBA is mainly designed for non-business degree holders, so you should be fine.

 

Edit to add: I should point out that the MBA is seen as having more clout in the business world than an MSc. I know a few of my classmates moved on to getting MBAs despite them having business undergrads.

Edited by Ryn
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Can we ask, what your stats were for both sides?

3.7 cgpa, 168...no GMAT. Some part time work experience (nothing significant) had to summit an application and do an interveiw.

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3.7 cgpa, 168...no GMAT. Some part time work experience (nothing significant) had to summit an application and do an interveiw.

 

Hope this isnt asking for too much, but can you give some details on the interview. I've heard its a skype video thing and somewhat like a job interview... 

Also what kind of references did you provide? My stats are quite similar to yours and I'm also from an arts background, so its encouraging to see someone like yourself get accepted. 

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Hope this isnt asking for too much, but can you give some details on the interview. I've heard its a skype video thing and somewhat like a job interview... 

Also what kind of references did you provide? My stats are quite similar to yours and I'm also from an arts background, so its encouraging to see someone like yourself get accepted. 

I am a little hesitant to provide too much information as I suspect everyone's interviews will be different, they are highly personalized based on the candidate. With that being said what I will comment on is the difference between the law school application process and the MBA process. Outside of grades, law schools are generally looking for "are you a well rounded person", "why do you want to be a lawyer?" "how will you contribute to both the legal field and this school?" On the other hand the MBA is looking for things like "How well do you work with others?" "When you are with other people do you tend to take on a leadership role?" "Do you learn from your own mistakes? How?" "Do you learn from the mistakes other people make? Provide examples" "Do you have to be badgered to get things done or do you take your own initiative?"

 

I ended up using two work references but I think JD/MBA's can use academic as well. Hope that helps!

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I ended up using two work references but I think JD/MBA's can use academic as well. Hope that helps!

 

Yes it does mate. Thanks! 

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So my MBA interview is coming up very soon.. I need some help on my attire. The invitation email said to prepare as though it were a job interview. Now I am inclined to think that meant a job in business, hence, I assume a suit and tie would be standard. Any other (finer) details to consider regarding this would be helpful.

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So my MBA interview is coming up very soon.. I need some help on my attire. The invitation email said to prepare as though it were a job interview. Now I am inclined to think that meant a job in business, hence, I assume a suit and tie would be standard. Any other (finer) details to consider regarding this would be helpful.

I wore a full suit, I think that's the way to go just to be safe.

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Just to confirm I just got admitted into the JD/MBA program with an arts background and they waived the GMAT for me.

Just a quick question, the admission documents for Rotman include two "professional references". Can I just ask my professors for that since working experience is not required? What was your experience? 

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Just a quick question, the admission documents for Rotman include two "professional references". Can I just ask my professors for that since working experience is not required? What was your experience? 

I was admitted to the JD/MBA last cycle and I used two professors as references. It didn't come up in my interview and did not seem to be an issue/subject of note in any way.

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