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Free MBA is it worth the time?

Discussion in 'Med Business [ MD/MBA, DO/MBA, DDS/MBA ]' started by TheMightyAngus, Apr 15, 2007.

  1. TheMightyAngus

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    My med school offers an MD/MBA degree at no additional tuition cost, but it will require me to take an additional year. The affiliated state b-school is by no means top-tier, and I doubt that I would develop any significant connections/networking that will carry over til I finish residency 6+ years from now. However, I want a stronger background in finance/business and would like to eventually start up a company sometime after I'm done with my medical training. My question is whether getting an MBA as a med student is worth the opportunity cost. Any input from MD/MBA's would be greatly appreciated.
     
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  3. Shredder

    Shredder User
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    haha love the equation angus, good seeing you again. how are things going for you? as for me im pissed, i made another thread nearby detailing. I'd like to hear about this topic too. Only at my school, edited, it's not even free! Where are you again? edited not top tier either, mid tier but I dunno about connections and such. I too would love to learn about biz and get some official title showing as much. Is it a so called "real" MBA or one of those healthcare MBAs? I think my school is same MBA as other biz students so I'm happy about that. I'm guessing MBA would be out of the question for you if it weren't free then, if you're on the margin even now? Opp cost is a very common dilemma for ppl pondering MBA and my bro has even raised the issue with me. I've always figured the long term payoff of MBA will justify opp cost, not certain though

    *on 2nd thought I should keep my school quiet as my rogue statements could land me in hot water
     
  4. TheMightyAngus

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    I'd rather remain anonymous cause my class is small. But I would get the same MBA as the b-school students. I'm not sure how much the MBA would add to an MD degree. Maybe I'll just take some classes. But would like to see what others have to say.

    I was also thinking about holding off until residency to do an MBA. Because I'd be closer to actually working. But I would have to pay for it, and it isn't cheap. With tuition raises and inflation, it could cost $60k+ a year by then.
     
  5. Learfan

    Learfan Machine Gunner
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    I would not waste any time or other valuable resources on an MBA degree. With the exception of the finance class, the entire degree is just a bunch of hand waving, opinions and smoke and mirrors dressed up in academic clothing so it can be sold for a price vastly disproportionate to the value received by the student. These degrees are marketed heavily by universities since it is very profitable for them. Think about it. All you need is a few professors and a classroom with a projector for up to 200 tuition paying students at a time.

    I obtained an MBA from a top 20 school and was astonished by the lack of any useful content along with the utter lack of meaningful job opportunities.After completing the degree, I obtained a total of two interviews with third rate companies and zero job offers. I graduated with a 3.8 so grades were not the issue. The MBA is an almost content free degree which will not help you any way with the exception of the finance class. Just remember that it is the most frequently conferred degree in the entire nation. Just to further drive home the point, a member of the faculty showed the class a published article which demonstrated that the NPV associated with obtaining a business degree from all but the top few schools was negative. You are destroying personal value by pursuing an MBA.

    After realizing just how badly I had been defrauded by the business school, I went to med school to learn a real trade. I just wish I could reclaim all of the money and time I wasted on an entirely useless business degree. The opportunity cost associated with that one year loss of earnings as a physician is huge. Do not waste the time.
     
  6. mshheaddoc

    mshheaddoc Howdy
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    Well, I disagree with the above poster but I can see his point and respect his experience.

    The MBA is a valuable tool with no business experience, although I personally think the experience is enhanced if you already had some coursework or work experience (which is why many schools require it). With the right classes you learn the basics of "business" from finance, marketing, economics, statistics, accounting, organizational behavior/HR stuff and most of all critical thinking. Every school has its own format on what their focus is. I often wish I would have gotten more out of my MBA because if you choose to really get involved in the coursework there is ALOT that you can learn. I can honestly say that I had some doozy of professors but I learned A GREAT deal in my program. Its not a Top 20 program, or even a top 50 program. But its gave me a solid foundation and is a highly regarded school in the regional area.

    MBA programs are different line of thinking if you've never had business classes. I've had a few people I know say they spent more time studying finance than they did for some med school classes because not everyone can "change gears" as there is a different thought process involved to some extent.

    If you have an interest in business would like to maybe move into health care administration or have options later down the road (private practice, get out of medicine) I'd suggest the dual degree. Its also great for just understanding general business in life as well. I really am a huge advocate of people understanding basic accounting, finance, etc. You'd be surprised where you might end up you need it.

    So that is just my opinion but if it doesn't cost you anything and its a decent program, why not? Ask the program to put you in touch with former students and current students. Ask for a few of them. Try to contact them and see what they say about the program.

    My vote is go for it because I am a person who likes to have options and I plan on using my MBA in MANY different ways. Its nice to have a different perspective on things.

    :luck:
     
  7. EUA

    EUA
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    Definitely agree with mshheaddoc, and most certainly not Learfan, who sounds somewhat embittered and is therefore probably not the best person to listen to. I always have thought the more education the better. Physicians are notorious for being completely incompetent in the finance/business arena, probably because it IS hard to switch the mental gears, especially when one's understanding of business is scanty at best.

    If it's only one extra year and no additional cost, I'd think you would be foolish to not pursue it. For those who are thinking of doing the MBA during residency -- find out if your hospital has tuition reimbursement. Well over 2/3 of my tuition is paid for by mine!

    Just go for it. You don't want to get sucked into practice and then later wish you had done it.
     
  8. Seger

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    I have a BS in Real Estate and Investment Finance, and am currently getting my MBA while I pick up science prereqs. to go to med school.

    My take is this: if you have an undergraduate business degree, the MBA does not add a whole lot of knowledge for the amount of time and money it requires;hence, it may not be a worth the time. In fact, at both of the business schools I have attended, there are some classes where undergraduate and graduate students attend the same lectures. On the other hand, if you hold or are in pursuit of a degree in the life sciences (as most med school students do/are), the MBA is well worth it.

    In regard to the value as it relates to your time, remember that your time will be worth a heck of a lot more after your residency. Additionally, already possessing the set of business skills may present additional income opportunities for you during your residency year(s).

    On a personal note to the quoted poster...if you only have 3 job offers from third-rate companies and you have an MBA from a top 20 school - I understand your frustration - but you might need to work on improving your communication skills/personal presence rather than your resume.
     
  9. mshheaddoc

    mshheaddoc Howdy
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    I want to echo this sentiment EUA and Seger. I am like Seger as I had a undergrad degree in economics/business and then went on for my MBA while working. In depth experience into the coursework means alot to understand key concepts. Now I'm back (again - was originally pre-med in college) to my true calling of medicine but the business experience I have attained is PRICELESS. I know quite a few students who have done the dual degree and done some AMAZING things involving non-profit organization, clinical research (yeah, can you imagine that!), and start-ups.

    If you like options, again, I'd say go for the program.
     
  10. DCHawk10

    DCHawk10 Junior Member
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    Shredder had brought up the question regarding "real" MBA vs. "Healthcare" MBA. I got the impression that he did not view the healthcare MBA very highly. What are your thoughts regarding the "healthcare" MBA? Is it generally well-received? It seems as though it would be a really good fit for physicians, to be able to get both the general MBA content and specialized healthcare content...
     
  11. mshheaddoc

    mshheaddoc Howdy
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    Healthcare MBA has various meanings that are highly dependant on the curriculum in my opinion. If you are looking for a healthcare MBA I would also probably consider the right MHA program because those classes might geared towards healthcare finance, HR, marketing, etc. If you have a true healthcare MBA program I think if you want to stay in healthcare its a great program. Usually its the core MBA classes with a healthcare spin. You might have a finance/accounting class that teaches basic finance with healthcare woven in. Those degrees are more focused towards healthcare specifically and less on "general application" of a MBA degree.

    Some schools have "concentrations" such as the classes I took were healthcare finance, social and political effects of healthcare, a class on history and case based dicussion on a variety of issues in healthcare from administrative view point, and a health policy class. My particular program had a "concentration" not a true healthcare MBA.
     
  12. Tigerstang

    Tigerstang Senior Member
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    What do you folks think about when to pursue the MBA? Right now I'm shying away from b/t 2nd/3rd year because I'd like to graduate with my class. I'm thinking about after 4th/before residency. Thoughts?
     
  13. Shredder

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    I've made some good friends in 1st yr so far and I expect it will continue through 2nd year, so that part will be kind of tough to leave them all behind. Or rather have them leave me behind in a way. But I think I'll still do it. I don't like tying myself to relationships, platonic or romantic. The opportunity cost of doing an MBA becomes more apparent the later you postpone it, so I want to do it asap. I figure I'll meet people in the class below me and still stay in touch with my current friends. I guess it will be kind of tough splitting with them--maybe I'll just plan rifts beforehand?
     

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