Category: Posts by Rebekah

A Special Message to International Candidates from the Assistant Dean

After an unprecedented year, I wanted to share some thoughts and encouragement if you are considering overseas graduate study. Simon Business School at the University of Rochester has welcomed and supported international students for more than 30 years, with our 18,000+ alumni representing more than 80 countries around the world.

Here are a few reasons Simon may be a great fit for your graduate business study:

  • Our longstanding history of student global diversity uniquely equips us to anticipate needs as we support our international students.
  • We celebrate the global diversity of our students through special monthly “Broaden Your Horizons” events that showcase the culture, food, and ways of doing business in different regions of the world.
  • With STEM-designated MBA and MS programs, the majority of our international students secure internships or full-time employment in the United States for up to three years post-graduation while remaining on their student visa.
  • Despite the COVID-19 global pandemic, we enrolled a slightly larger cohort of international MBA students this fall from 19 different countries. The large majority of those students arrived to Rochester for face-to-face learning during the first few weeks of school.
  • After receiving a US-based education, you’ll enter our network of Simon alumni who are eager to help one another. Because Simon graduates are all over the globe, it’s likely you’ll make short- or long-term professional connections in your home country or region.

Following the recent US election, I expect policy changes that will further benefit and support international students, so now is a fantastic time to invest in yourself with graduate study. I’m confident a Simon Business School STEM-designated degree will equip you with the analytic and quantitative skills that employers expect.

I encourage you to submit your application as soon as possible. Applying earlier in the cycle not only maximizes your consideration for both admission and merit-based scholarships, but it also allows ample time to secure a student visa and arrive in the US to begin your studies.

Please reach out to us if you have any questions—we are here to support you every step of the way.

We hope to review your application soon!

Advice from the Assistant Dean: Tips Before You Apply

The following post was written by Rebekah Lewin, assistant dean of admissions and financial aid

Rebekah.LewinAlthough the past six months have been such an unusual season of life in so many ways, I am thankful that the value of the Simon MBA and the career outcomes for our graduates remain constant. As we gear up for another busy admissions recruitment cycle, I wanted to share a few thoughts and tips for prospective students who are planning to apply to Simon. 

Be prepared. Make the two-sided case for “fit” with Simon—both the value you bring to Simon and the value Simon will provide to you. This should be based upon research on the program, personal introspection, and any connections or conversations you have had with Simon stakeholders.


Find ways to engage with Simon
. This will actually support my first piece of advice by helping to affirm things you may have heard about the school or information you are still hoping to learn. We are participating in a variety of MBA and MS virtual events with partners such as The Consortium, Forté, Inside the MBA, QS, Access Masters, and more. In addition, the Admissions team is hosting many sessions featuring current MBA students and MBA alumni and a series of webinars for our prospective MS students. We also offer an opportunity to Check Your Eligibility—or fit—for Simon, which will allow you to receive feedback from the Admissions team before you apply.

Be introspective. Understand your personal strengths and weaknesses, why you want a graduate degree at this stage of your life, and where you see the degree taking you in your career. Practice how you present your ideas and your story. This will benefit your interactions with the Admissions team and ultimately be excellent preparation for future networking conversations with current students, alumni, and corporate recruiters.

Start your application now! Whether you are planning on our Spring 2021 MS entry (November 1 deadline) or our Fall 2021 MBA or MS entry (October 15 and January 5 deadlines), now is the time to open an application and get started. Once you open the application, you can see what is required and budget enough time to put your best foot forward. Additionally, you will also receive timely reminders to ensure you stay on track with important deadlines.

Applying for B-school is a big time commitment, but it is an exciting next step in your career journey. We are excited to partner with you in your plans for graduate study and look forward to seeing your application to one of our full-time MBA or MS programs. Good luck and feel free to reach out to the Admissions team with any questions you have throughout the process!

Advice from the Assistant Dean: Building a Strong Application for Fall 2020

The following blog post was written by Rebekah Lewin, assistant dean of admissions and financial aid

Rebekah.LewinEach year around this time, we begin to hear from applicants wondering if it’s “too late” to apply or worrying about submitting their application after several rounds of applications are already under review. This year in particular, there may be even more uncertainty around your plans and questions you may have about specific elements of the application, such as transcripts and test scores.

Feeling like so many things are up in the air can be intimidating, but here’s my advice: Don’t wait on business school. If this is a goal you’ve set for yourself, now is a great time to refine existing skills and develop new tools that will empower you to make an immediate impact in your next professional role.

Now more than ever, it’s important to choose a business school that will deliver strong ROI. After a bold move to lower our MBA tuition in 2015, Simon tuition has risen just over 2% since that time.  Additionally, more than 85% of MBA students receive scholarship support from the school. The MBA Class of 2019 earned an average base salary plus sign-on bonus of $142,166—up 17% from the previous year—and 91% of graduates were hired within three months of graduation. It’s easy to see why The Economist ranked us No. 3 among private US business schools for ROI, based on percentage increase on pre-MBA salary (2019).

Prospective Simon MS students should consider that our specialized master’s programs offer shorter programs of study, so there is lower opportunity cost and a quicker re-entry to the workforce. Pair that with the fact that all four programs boast employment rates of over 90% within four months of graduation, and it’s clear that a Simon MS degree is a great way to invest in your future career in analytics/STEM-related fields that are in high demand.

We know these are unprecedented times, and we at Simon have continued to monitor the evolution of COVID-19 carefully. As you know from a previous post, the University of Rochester is taking social distancing seriously—our current students have been taking online courses since mid-March and Simon faculty and staff are working remotely. In addition, we’ve made a few adjustments to simplify the application process for our prospective students:

  • Flexing the methods of assessment for some of our application requirements (learn more on our MBA and MS FAQ pages)
  • Waiving our $90 application fee for those applying for Fall 2020
  • Adding a June 15 application deadline for Fall 2020 entry
  • Canceling our Pre-Fall orientation and academic coursework so that the fall semester will begin on Wednesday, August 26

If you’re working through your application to begin business school this fall, I want to offer a few tips that will help you stand out to the Admissions Committee as a competitive candidate:

Be confident. Regardless of your reason(s) for applying in the spring, you should be confident in your talent and work diligently on all aspects of the application. Show the Admissions Committee how you will be an asset to the school not only as a student, but as a member of its alumni community as well.

Do your research. Be thorough in researching your target B-schools so you understand the culture of the schools and can clearly express why you are a “good fit” for the program. Typically, the essay and interview components are good opportunities to express this to the Admissions Committee.

Be ready to interview. The interview timeline will likely be compressed given the time of year, so be prepared to quickly respond if/when an offer is extended.

Here’s one more tip if you’re admitted: Don’t wait to secure your spot in the class. This time of year the deadline to respond to our offer will likely be roughly one or two weeks. Our goal is to give you the opportunity to start career on-boarding activities as soon as possible—make sure you ask critical questions up front so that you are prepared to commit and enroll if you are admitted.

Each year we admit—and award merit-based scholarships to—great students in the spring, and this year we hope you will be among them! Our remaining application deadlines for 2020 entry are as follows (rolling admission occurs in between the deadlines):

  • May 1, 2020
  • June 15, 2020 (deadline added in response to COVID-19)

Most importantly, please accept my best wishes for health and safety for you and your loved ones. The well-being of our Simon community is paramount, so we’ll continue to monitor over the coming weeks and months to ensure we provide an excellent learning experience in a healthy and stable environment. 

In the meantime, we are here to support you as you put the finishing touches on your Simon application and through the entire application process, so please reach out to us if you have any questions.

Our #SimonStrong Community Responds to COVID-19

The following blog post was written by Rebekah Lewin, assistant dean of admissions and financial aid

First and foremost, I hope this finds you well. 

Over the past two months, we have been planning and responding to the impact of COVID-19 within our business school community as it has evolved into a worldwide issue. Though times are uncertain and unprecedented, we are adjusting and innovating in relentless support of the educational, professional, and personal goals of our prospective, incoming, and current students.

Here are a few examples:

  • After receiving feedback from many admitted and confirmed students, we are eliminating our Pre-Fall orientation and academic coursework and shifting our entering date to August 2020 to allow entering students more time to arrive in Rochester. This additional time will also ensure that more students can enjoy a face to face learning experience in a healthy and stable environment.
  • Staff members from every department continue to virtually strategize and reimagine programming that will keep current students on track toward graduation and success in the career search and that will provide a cohesive onboarding experience for our incoming students.
  • On March 11 the University of Rochester announced a move to distance learning for the remainder of the academic year. Our faculty and Simon Technology Services team pivoted in a matter of days to launch our Spring B mini semester courses online last week, and we’ve heard great things so far! We are grateful for the hard work from so many that allows us to provide an excellent virtual educational experience for our students.
  • The entire Simon—and University of Rochester—community is taking social distancing seriously, but thankfully that doesn’t mean we are disconnected from one other. Students immediately found ways to pull together while staying apart, and our Simon Slack channels have been a great resource for sharing Netflix recommendations, offering tutorials on new hobbies, launching fitness challenges, and more! In fact, recently students held the first virtual “Keeping Simon Social” event, during which roughly 35 students connected via Zoom to get a little face time with their Simon family.

We’ve always known our tight-knit community was special, but over the past few weeks it has shone brightly in a new way. We will continue to support one another and work through challenges together—we are #SimonStrong, after all. 

As the COVID-19 situation continues to evolve around the world, please know the Simon Admissions Team has care and concern for you and your family, friends, and all those affected. We’re aware many people targeting 2020 enrollment have questions about application requirements, so we developed COVID-19 related application MBA and MS FAQs to help answer questions that are top of mind for so many.

We wish and your family health and safety, and as always, we encourage you to reach out to us if you have additional questions so we can continue to support you and your graduate business goals.

Learn more about the University of Rochester’s COVID-19 latest resources and updates.