Contributed by Shriya Bhambhani
Considering a professional degree? Choosing a renowned name never goes out of fashion.
Pedigree – a term we might associate with a pet food brand, actually has a deeper meaning. The mental impact an influential university tag can have on a person or the society at large is immense – it brings reliability, assures you of the quality and attracts more confidence. In common parlance, the pedigree of a university can be understood as the academic repute it holds from the perception of a student, a potential recruiter or the public in general. It will always be safe to say that the pedigree of a school like the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) is unquestionable. There has been a consistent belief in the top brass of the corporates that it is important to get a professional education, but more important is where you get it from. “Other than the top 10, it really does not matter”, as per a claim by Edward Poll, an acclaimed management consultant.
Presumably, looking at an opportunity to study with a top institute from a student’s angle, the multiplier effect works very simply – invest in quality education, get better prospects, do better decision making, make more out of your career and that investment flows back into your account. Learners who have successfully completed the MIT IDSS Data Science and Machine Learning Program, for example, claim that their visibility on LinkedIn rose by 30%*, with the added benefit of an increase in interview shortlists by 70%**. The learners also credited the ‘MIT alumni’ status to earn them a larger and more meaningful growth in their professional network.
In an era where content is free and easily accessible, “the MIT tag made a difference; the free courses do not cover any of this”, affirmed Yash Patel, an alumnus of the MIT IDSS Data Science and Machine Learning program, who tried several online resources before zeroing in on this program. For another alumnus at a senior management level in the BFSI sector, Tarun Kumar, the decision-making to proceed with the program became easier since he “wanted to do a program from a recognised brand name and within a specific timeline”.
Employers consider many aspects of a possible recruit before selection: personality, interpersonal skills, experience, EQ and IQ, for instance. However, when there are stacks of CVs lined up, the other factors might blur out and the pedigree of the university can make a stark difference. “Will perceive (an MIT certificate holder in Data Science and Machine Learning) as a learner and someone who is aware of the latest thinking. Not a Substitute for the experience though, but everything else being equal, the MIT tag will give an edge”, claims an AI Leader at Accenture Inc. An Executive Director at JP Morgan Chase mentioned, “On the basis of CV, would think of it as a huge positive”.
A simple conclusion to this would be that a certificate from an influential university like MIT can be a win-win for the alumni and recruiters alike – the university would provide best in class curricula, better instructors and bring in more experienced speakers, leading the learners to be equipped with not just better training, but also a greater performance at their jobs.
*5 of 5 people interviewed
**3 of 5 people interviewed