Congratulations, chica, you did it! You have graduated from college with a B.A. or a B.S. or a B.F.A. or a B.B.A. or… well, whatever it was, it was definitely a lot of hard work! Surviving four years of higher education despite skyrocketing costs, clinically deranged roommates, crunchy professors, and perhaps even a bad life decision or two is no mean feat. If only you could just bask in your glory for a few months or years and never have to worry about that irksome, yet inevitable question: What next? It's enough to make any otherwise sane young lady want to tear out all her hair extensions.
Image via Flickr by Jason Bolonski
Considering Business as a Career Direction
However, while you're keeping the family busybodies at bay with prank answers like “organic aerialist” or “ape impersonator”, you might want to start thinking seriously (yet calmly!) about that all-important next step towards a fulfilling and lucrative career. Though things can often seem overwhelming, the good news is that many standards in the professional world are changing in order to accommodate an increasingly tech-savvy and individualistic society. Options for furthering your education are likewise more extensive and diverse than ever.
One especially interesting change is currently taking place at business schools, many of which are reassessing just what it means to be successful and competitive in today's global market. No less than Harvard University recently determined that the dreaded GMAT, once the gold standard for business-school admission, might not be such a great predictor of lasting business acumen after all. Doing well in school is one thing. Mastering reality — that's something else entirely.
No GMAT Required for Many MBA Programs
In fact, the GMAT is finding itself increasingly sidelined by other indicators like the GRE or past work experience, not to mention the personal qualities giving every unique individual his or her particular edge. Traits such as creativity, tenacity, adaptability, and leadership are receiving overdue recognition as the determining factors they really are in all the wonderful and challenging situations you're likely to face on your way to the top.
This is not to discredit the GMAT or predict its imminent extinction. However, if you find that your best qualities tend to shine in other arenas than standardized tests, you can celebrate the fact that the business world is now officially open to you.
Both Online and Traditional MBA Programs Changing Standards
Actually, there's even more good news here. Both traditional and online MBA no GMAT programs are currently embracing a more open-minded admissions philosophy. This means you can keep your job at the zoo as an ape impersonator while continuing your education in your spare time. The majority of these programs are fully accredited, offering a wide array of specialties, allowing you to focus on just the right area where you're certain to succeed. Surely that must be worth a celebratory banana or two!
Image via Flickr by stannate
In all honesty, finding the right career is a rite of passage most people find pretty daunting. However, today's graduates are uniquely poised to custom-design their careers according to their own dreams and ambitions. Whether you want to sell stocks and bonds or cupcakes, build up your own enterprise or revolutionize an old one, there is a place for you to thrive, and many, many ways to get there.