Those dismissing business school as the domain of the male majority have clearly not looked at the latest rounds of GMAT statistics. Women and international students are taking the GMAT in greater numbers and are more present than ever in incoming MBA classes.
According to the 2012 GMAC Application Trends Survey over half of this year’s application pool was female.
In addition, 2012 boasts a record percentage of international test takers, comprising 34% of the overall pool.
These steadily increasing trends in MBA applications reflect a growing trend in the workplace, as more companies embrace and strive for diversity.
Indeed, you can see the trend in the current election dominating U.S. news- both President Barack Obama and Governor Mitt Romney are furiously striving to win the female vote and sway other minority groups.
This steady climb towards diversity has a couple of distinct, positive effects for MBA applicants.
First, wider ranges of work experiences have more value in the MBA application.
Past critics have accused top business schools of having a formula for the perfect student and of only selecting students from a certain sector.
That approach is no longer viable, and schools are welcoming and recruiting students with a wide variety of backgrounds, work experiences, and ambitions.
As diverse groups of students come in demanding diverse organizations, business schools now offer a plethora of extracurricular activities to support different interests and groups.
Virtually every top business school has student organizations for Women in Business, Hispanics in Business, African American in Business, and many more.
These organizations, and all of the events that they sponsor, are helping to create a robust campus life that more accurately mimics the culture of globalization that we are now in.
The consistent globalization of business favors students who have or who are willing to seek out cross-cultural experiences.
Whether in B-school applications or post-MBA job interviews, cross-cultural skills and experiences are an increasingly valuable centerpiece for your resume.
Such experiences come in many forms, from globetrotting study abroad programs to learning a new language to working with different culture groups in your local community.
The most important thing is that you are willing to push yourself outside of your comfort zone, to embrace and adapt new cultures and different points of view.
In today’s globalized world, those who are not willing to do that much are very likely to fall behind.
Contact EXPARTUS to discuss ways you can beef up your cross cultural background before you apply to business school.