Category: Posts by Rebekah

Update from the Senior Assistant Dean: Plans for Fall 2021

The following blog post was written by Rebekah Lewin, senior assistant dean of admissions and programs

I wanted to share an update on our plans for Fall 2021 based upon information available to us today. We expect to continue offering in-person instruction and co-curricular and social activities, with a hope to expand these opportunities to the extent that it remains feasible and safe to do so. We have learned a lot about how to offer these activities this past year, and this information will guide our decisions and plans. This will likely include mandatory mask wearing on campus and using larger classrooms where we can continue to spread out students to ensure lower density in classrooms.

Because the timing for global vaccinations and travel remains a bit uncertain, we also expect to offer a hybrid learning option with online classes that allows students (regardless of location) to study online if needed. Although the hybrid format will accommodate students with health concerns, we strongly encourage physical class attendance both to enable the advantages of in-person learning and to help build our community through the informal interactions that naturally arise before and after classes. We, of course, expect those interactions to adhere to social distancing guidelines.

Similar to this year, we will continue to proactively collaborate with the International Services Office to understand the impact of our policies and practices so our international students remain “in status” and fully understand the impact of their decisions and options. We are committed to helping each student complete their Simon degree, and we realize in some cases that there are circumstances outside of a student’s control that impact location or study format preferences.

Please keep in mind that the CDC, New York State, and the University have made a number of updates in their guidance and requirements over the past year, and we will continue to adjust our plans if required.

If you have additional questions about our plans for the fall semester—or about your candidacy or the admissions process in general—please feel free to reach out to the Admissions Office. We are here to support you every step of the way!

There is still time to apply to begin your full-time MBA or MS degree in 2021! We have two remaining application deadlines for 2021 entry (March 31 and May 1), and merit-based scholarship is always available for qualified candidates. Don’t wait—apply today!

Reflections from the Assistant Dean: The Value of a Graduate Business Degree

As we “zoom” into 2021 (literally and figuratively), I wanted to take a few minutes to reflect on the past few months and also illuminate the road ahead for candidates who are preparing for graduate business school. Although the global pandemic has changed so many aspects of our lives (some temporarily and others permanently), the value and ROI of a Simon graduate business degree remains unchanged. 

  • Throughout the Fall 2020 and Spring 2021 semesters, we have operated in a hybrid learning model with a combination of on-campus and virtual classes and have hosted programming that prioritizes the health and safety of everyone at Simon while creating connections within the community.

  • Despite some challenges in the economy, the hiring outlook for many corporate partners is stable (and in some cases even growing) with 2020 MBA salaries higher than in 2019 and employment rates comparable to the prior year. It’s clear that companies desire candidates with a STEM-designated degree who possess an analytical mindset, along with the management and leadership skills to add immediate value to their organizations.

  • Our commitment to the importance of equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) remains unwavering—beginning with joining The Consortium for Graduate Study in Management more than 50 years ago—through present day, where we hold the No. 1 spot for the diversity of our student body among the top-50 business schools as ranked by U.S. News & World Report.

  • The Economist ranked Simon No. 25 overall and No. 16 in the US among the world’s top full-time MBA programs. Simon was also ranked No. 3 for percentage increase on pre-MBA salary, which is an excellent indicator of the return on investment your degree from Simon will provide. In addition, our faculty teach and our staff support across all programs, so MBA rankings are a strong signal of the value you can expect while studying at Simon—no matter which degree you pursue.

I can personally attest to the ROI a graduate business degree from Simon offers. My time at Simon spans more than twenty years of my career and also includes pursuing my MBA along the way. In two weeks I will transition to an expanded role, where I will oversee admissions for all full-time and part-time programs, along with the Office of Student Engagement, the Benet Career Management Center, and our school’s Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion efforts. I look forward to working to further build on our existing strengths as we invest in the student experience (international immersions, experiential learning, student clubs and organizations, leadership, and more) and partner with our students to achieve their career goals. 

My Simon degree has given me the tools I’ve needed to be successful at every stage in my career, and I’m confident it will do the same for you. Now is an amazing time to apply to Simon Business School. In fact, if you apply by our Round 3 deadline on February 15 at 11:59 p.m. EST, your application fee will be reduced to $50 (originally $90)!

We look forward to supporting you throughout the admissions process—don’t hesitate to reach out to the Admissions team with any questions you have.

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!