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Military FAQs

We hope the following will be helpful in answering some of your questions, and please feel free to contact us if you would like additional information.

Admissions

As a US active duty soldier or veteran, am I eligible for an application fee waiver?
Yes, as a GMAC Military-Friendly Business School, we will waive the $125 application fee for active duty US military personnel, veterans and retirees.  Please contact Annie Dolan to get your fee waiver.

Does my military experience count as professional experience?
Yes!  Please see below.

How do I explain my military experience in my application?
You can utilize multiple areas in the application to highlight your military experience. Use specific examples in your essays and interview, give a brief overview in your resume including your titles, and additional details in the employment record. Show your role and growth as a leader by noting promotions and including details such as how many people you were leading or the value of the equipment you were responsible for.

Your recommenders can also highlight your roles, skills, and abilities in their letters. Candidates with military experience tend to have strong team and leadership experience (which we are looking for in applicants!), so having your recommenders highlight how you performed in those situations adds another dimension to your application.

Also, we understand if because of security reasons you are not able to provide specific details of certain roles, events, or an extended period of time. Please make a note of that in the optional essay of the application if you think that it would be helpful to the Admissions team.

I have a number of questions and concerns about the application process, the MBA program, career opportunities, etc. Who can I just talk to about this?
Please feel free to email Annie Dolan, Associate Director of Masters Admissions, and she will be happy to schedule a time to talk over the phone. She can also help connect you with current students or recent alumni in the military community.

Do I have to take the GMAT?  When should I take the GMAT?  Where can I take the GMAT?  Is there a minimum score?  What is the average score? 
All MBA applicants must complete the GMAT, and testing is available year round. You should take the test before the application round deadline for which you are applying. There is no minimum score required, and if you decide to take the test more than once, we always consider your highest total score. You can check out our class profile for recent averages and ranges. Your GMAT score is good for five years, so you can bank your score ahead of time until you are ready to apply.

Locate a GMAT test center near you. DANTES may reimburse the fee for eligible US military personnel taking the GMAT.

What if I can't come to campus for an interview?
On campus interviewing is an option, but when we extend an invitation for an interview, we also offer phone interviews and webcam interviews. All are weighed the same in the admissions process, so it is not a disadvantage if your deployment or training prevents you from being able to come to campus for an in-person interview.  

How will I receive my admissions decision?
Applicants receive their admission decision via email on the posted decision release date.

What if I am admitted into the program, but then my deployment orders are extended or my release date is pushed back, and I wouldn't be able to start classes on time?
While we usually do not grant admission deferrals, we feel that this situation is unique, and so we will defer your admission to the next year. Please make sure to contact your interviewer to so they can assist you through this process.

For general Admissions questions, please also refer to our Admissions FAQs.

Financial Aid/Scholarships

Is the Tepper School participating in the Yellow Ribbon Program?
Yes, the Tepper School is participating in the Yellow Ribbon Program under the new GI Bill which assists in meeting the cost difference above the amount provided by the new GI Bill. For more information, please visit our Veteran's Education Benefits site.

Also helpful for your financial planning would be reviewing your eligibility under the GI Bill as well as using the GI Bill calculator to get an idea of your eligibility in Pennsylvania.  The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania also offers financial aid and grants to veterans and national guardsman.

Are there any scholarships?
We award Merit Based Scholarships and MBA Dean's Scholarships.

Career

How does the Tepper School assist in transitioning from the military to civilian career paths?
Many students in our program are looking to make a career transition, so you would not be alone. The Career Opportunities Center (COC) assists in many ways, and they get you started at Orientation before classes even begin.

They provide you with a suggested "road map" of tasks and things you should be doing in order to help make your career change successful and make you an attractive candidate for corporate recruiters. You also have the benefit of year-round coaching, mentoring, and interview skills workshops. And the support does not end with graduation, as the COC works with our alumni as well.

Program

What happens if there is a duty assignment that causes me to miss classes for some period (ranging from a couple of months to as much as a year)?
We've had students in our program that have been in this situation, and they took a Leave of Absence.  In this situation, you would work with the Student Services Office to make the arrangements for your time away and for when you return.

Does the Tepper School or Carnegie Mellon University have any military support organizations on campus?
There is a Military Veterans Association on campus started by Tepper students. Also, second year students and alumni who have military experience help in the personal and professional transition and in positioning your military experience in an advantageous way for recruiters.

Is there an advantage for a vet to go full-time v. part-time?
Both are great options and deciding which program will depend on what will fit you best – keep in mind that our full and part time programs share the same facility and faculty, and in the end, you graduate with the same degree.  Some points to consider:  We have vets in both programs. Do you want to work full-time while getting your MBA? The part-time program allows that flexibility. Are your career goals a big transition from your previous experience? If so, the internship component in the full-time program would be advantageous. The Admissions team would be happy to discuss with you further which program might be a good fit for you and your individual goals and situation.

I've been away from school for several years and have not used quantitative skills much since I graduated from my undergraduate institution. Are there options like pre-courses that I should consider looking into to prepare myself and are there any prerequisites?  
BaseCamp is offered the summer before matriculating into the program, and it's a comprehensive Orientation program. Includes coverage of specific business topics, skill set workshops, math skills review, networking opportunities, and career prep designed to help students make a smooth transition into the MBA program.

A semester of college Calculus and either Calculus II, Statistics, or Linear Algebra are required prerequisites for students entering into the MBA program. Having them in your academic history can strengthen your application, but is not required as part of your application. Candidates may be admitted with the provision that they complete the necessary math courses prior to beginning the program.

What are some popular courses of study among military students at the Tepper School?
Some of the more popular areas among our military students seem to be finance, operations/logistics, entrepreneurship, consulting, general management, and the Dual MBA/MSPPM degree with Heinz College. But keep in mind that the flexibility of the program allows you many opportunities to explore and there are a wide variety of electives available - both at the Tepper School and across Carnegie Mellon’s campus. The Tepper School has among the largest  offering of electives of any top 20 b-school, so feel free to take full advantage.

Resources

Below are some resources and information you might find helpful.

 

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