The Importance of the Face-to-Face Meeting

Find out why attending a QS event could change your life

Face-to-face meetings remain at the heart of the student decision-making process when applying to business schools. In the age of social media, virtual meetings, and telecommuting, the human touch becomes even more significant. At a time when people seem more isolated than ever, applicants continue to tell us they want input from an independent agent, or school representative, at fairs. It allows them to get a feel for a community before making a huge investment, such as enrolling in business school.


The proof is obvious at QS events, which are intended to connect applicants with business schools and the opportunities associated with them. QS hosts more than 300 events in nearly 50 countries each year. In 2017, we had a strong showing. Across the globe over 60,000 people attended our various events, while nearly 7,000 booths were on exhibit.

Clearly, people want to meet and greet one another. Research about what programs and business schools are best for you might begin online. But, the ultimate decision about where to apply and enroll requires hitting the pavement and seeing for one’s self. Discover why events like ours and meeting schools in person makes all the difference:

 

You have to determine fit

Rankings, such as the QS Global MBA Rankings 2018, are a great place to start your business school search. Certainly, they give you an overall feel of where a school stands in relation to competitors. But, they don’t tell you the entire story of a place. The people who carry on the work of the campus, or those who have lived the student experience spread the word. That is why it is vital to speak with them to get a real sense of the institution, and the programs on offer.

They can share a bit of the culture and help you understand the community. Through those conversations, you can start to envision what everyday life will be like. You can better understand the nuances – what you’ll be studying, where you’ll be going, what kind of career you can begin to build.

 

People can counsel you 

What is preferable about talking to people in person is the ability to have a free-flowing conversation. You can ask about what interests you, receive a response, and ask follow-up questions. It’s definitely more natural than a typed conversation online.

At QS World MBA Tour events, candidates get advice on MBA admissions strategy, gain insight on how to improve GMAT and GRE scores, and learn how to apply for $1.7 million in QS scholarships. The point is human interaction helps when you’re trying to get into your dream school. It allows you to gain insider tips that you can’t get anywhere else.

 

Unlock the culture of a program

When schools set up booths and send representatives to an event, they can share firsthand what a program is like. For one, these representatives can tell you about the basics – what classes you’ll take, who teaches at the program, etc.

Yes, you can find that information online usually. But, experts can tell you which courses captivate students and what makes a program particularly special to someone interested in finance or entrepreneurship, for example. You’re talking straight to the source, so you know the information is accurate.

Most importantly, talking to representatives, and alumni, from a school gives you the chance to see the kind of people you’ll be interacting on campus with. It is the kind of insight no computer or virtual meeting can give you. These encounters are what give you that feeling in your gut – good or bad – about a place.

 

Discover the chance to see the future  

When alumni come to our events, they share their success stories. They can tell you what school was like but also how the degree and lessons learned contributed to their career. You can read all about return on investment (ROI), in the QS TopMBA.com Return on Investment Report: Full-Time MBA 2018 and you should. But, anecdotal evidence of ROI from those who have lived it is important, too.

Hearing those stories and seeing evidence of what you can do upon successful completion of a particular program gives you vision. It’s the moment you can see what can be done and imagine yourself doing it. That is often what catapults a person into taking next steps. It could change your life. 


*This article was originally published on LinkedIn. Please feel free to follow me to share your thoughts and comments.

Nunzio Quacquarelli

Nunzio is the founder and CEO of QS. Following completion of his own MBA from the Wharton School, he has gone on to become a leader in education management with over 25 years of experience in the industry. He is truly passionate about education and firmly believes in the QS mission to help young people to fulfill their potential through educational achievement, international mobility and career development. 

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