If you’re one of the lucky MBA applicants who have been invited to an interview, congratulations! Most business schools offer you the choice of going to campus for your interview or meeting with an alumnus in your city. The question is, which should you choose?

Should I Stay or Should I Go?

Know that the schools truly will not hold it against you if you live far from campus and can’t make the trip. Furthermore, if you’re concerned about traveling due to finances, family needs, or taking the time off work, there’s no need to add further stress to the process. That said, if you are being offered an interview at Columbia and you live in Philadelphia, it would behoove you to hop on Amtrak and make the trip to campus. You’re still very much in the courtship phase at this point, and your effort will be noted and appreciated.

Why Interview on Campus?

There are lots of upsides to interviewing on campus. Making the effort to travel there certainly indicates a high level of commitment and enthusiasm for the school. Most of all, it offers an ideal opportunity for you to make a day out of it and immerse yourself in the b-school experience: have lunch with a current student, sit in on a class, take a tour of the campus. There’s no better source of insight into a program than through your own firsthand experience. This will serve you extremely well if you are accepted and are trying to decide which school to attend. Even better, if you schedule your interview at the end of the day, you can discuss what you’ve gained from your time on campus, and how it has reinforced that this is the ideal program for you.

Ultimately use your best judgment and make sure that, wherever you interview, you impress them with your preparation and passion for the program. From there, admissons decisions will be soon be on their way!

[For help preparing for business school interviews, or for general MBA admissions advice, contact us at info@shineadmissions.com]

© Shine/ MBA Admissions Consulting, November 17 2014, 11:00am MT