A merit scholarship is your first step toward change
Historically, scholarships were based on class structure (minority scholarships) and economic status (need-based). However, in this world of inclusiveness and globalization, one scholarship that has made its mark is the merit-based scholarship. These scholarships are often university financial aid and are rewarded to students with high merit.
Nowadays, grad schools offer scholarships to motivate talented graduates for professional degrees like MBAs, which are a lot more expensive than any other graduate program. Miran Ng, who is originally from Singapore and is currently in his second year of the Full-time MBA at Alliance Manchester Business School has received 30% of the AMBS Scholarship. Scholarships at AMBS typically cover between 10% and 50% of tuition fees. On the scholarship application process, Miran says, “There wasn’t [a] separate application for the scholarship. [The school] assesses each candidate based on not only your interview [and] not only your background [and] your personal letters, but your entire application package.” (00:26)
Thus, it is indeed your academic credentials, your professional record, and your interpersonal skills which matter the most – but that’s not all. Top business schools like AMBS also look for leadership qualities in candidates. So, if you have a unique story as an entrepreneur or you have a vision to serve the world with a renewed purpose, this is your first step towards making a difference.
The vision to make a difference in the world is what makes your application unique
The key to a successful scholarship application is to make it personal and include impactful details. Consider having a detailed brainstorming session to pull together a solid outline of the attributes and ideas you want to emphasize about yourself.
AMBS looks into each candidate’s potential and their ability to enrich all aspects of the program and contribute to the diversity and multicultural profiles of the MBA cohort. Miran’s strong values and ethics and his idea to contribute to society were the keys to success. “What I told them [is] why I am doing my MBA [which] is that I want to eventually work in water and bring clean water, possibly sanitation, to places which just don’t have that,” Miran says. “I think having an interesting story might have made me stand out. To be honest, [the whole class is] academically bright and all of us have a good professional background. I think it’s more of where I want to go after this [and] my vision for myself.” (01:15)
An MBA can take you as far as you want to go
Having an MBA degree from AMBS provides you with leadership skills and can help you lead your way through uncertainties, teach you how to grab opportunities, and steer your innovative mind in an ever-changing, ever-complex business landscape. On his choice to study at AMBS, Miran says, “To be perfectly honest, it’s more because of the pedagogy. We tend to be very project-heavy. I have had one exam in my entire time here and I am never going to have another exam. I tend to learn better by doing.”
“We have three consultancy projects as well as multiple smaller individual projects for strategy, for mergers and acquisitions,” he continues. “That kind of pedagogy resonates with me a lot better than with other schools. I tend to learn by getting my hands dirty, by figuring things out myself, working in a team… So I thought this would be a very good way to not only feed into my strengths but also [to] contribute with my project management skills.” (01:59)
Improve your chances of getting an MBA scholarship
For prospective students applying to top programs, the good news is that business schools like AMBS have a substantial amount of financial endowments. Miran, who received 30% of the AMBS Scholarship, told us that this merit scholarship actually took care of GBP£12,000 of his tuition fees.
Miran had a great narrative with his idea to serve people with poor sanitary conditions. With a strong belief in himself and his mission, he believes that creating a great application isn’t only about having a high GRE score or having a sound professional or academic background. There is something more that is needed to improve your chances of getting a scholarship. “Work on your story,” he urges. “Everybody has pros and cons. Everybody has [achieved something outside their CV]. So, work on telling your interviewer these stories, work on mentioning [them] to faculty, work on talking to people who have been where you want to be, and they will be able to see what makes you unique and that’s what the school wants.” (03:35)
If you’d like to hear more from students who have lived the Alliance Manchester Business School experience, reach out to them via the MBAGRADSCHOOLS Ambassadors Page.