I remember this time last year, I was getting ready to join LSE. I suppose many of you may have already received your offers and some may be waiting. And for some, the decision to accept or decline the offer is easy whereas, for others, it’s not.
This article addresses that. I’ll be going through certain points that may help you in your decision-making. Particularly, I will be talking about invalid reasons to come to LSE followed by the valid ones.
Without further ado…
Why you SHOULD come to LSE:
- You want international exposure
LSE is truly diverse in all aspects- students, teachers, teaching styles, assessment types, activities, events, etc. Coming to LSE will expose you to a global audience with different perspectives which will ultimately help build your knowledge. It’s not all about studying and books. There are always plenty of cultures being celebrated. You will meet people from different backgrounds with such interesting lives.
- You want to challenge yourself
Another thing about LSE- everybody’s smart in their own way. This means competition is high but it also means you will have a lot of opportunities to develop and strengthen your skills. Note: just because it is challenging doesn’t mean it’s impossible. It isn’t impossible to get a distinction or be an achiever but it is more challenging. If that sounds like something you would enjoy, LSE is your place.
Now that we’ve covered these points, let’s move on to why you SHOULD NOT come to LSE:
- You think coming to LSE is a free pass to a job:
LSE has an amazing brand name and will definitely help you in your career. However, if you’re coming to LSE because you think being at LSE will guarantee you a top-paying job, I would suggest you rethink your decision. Despite LSE’s brand name and Career Services, a majority of the effort required to land a job is YOUR responsibility. In other words, you need to work hard as well. Thus, it isn’t sufficient to just have ‘LSE’ on your CV/resume. You also need to do your part which is making use of LSE’s resources to further your career.
- You’re looking to score an easy distinction:
LSE’s curriculum is designed to academically challenge you. If you’re looking to just score high marks, LSE isn’t the place for you. This is not to say you CAN’T get high marks but rather it means that the system is different; it is designed to broaden your perspective and knowledge, not ensure everyone gets good grades. Therefore, scoring high marks will again be YOUR responsibility, not the schools’.
To illustrate the above, I’d like to share my experience as an example. When I got my offer, there were several factors to think about- the cost (both fee and the opportunity cost), the place (London vs other cities), etc. I went about this by prioritising these features.
- First and foremost, I focused on the program- was it right for me? did it cover what I wanted it to cover? what were the prospective career fields I could enter post-degree?
- Second, of course, the cost is an important factor – how much is the tuition, accommodation, cost of living? Is it worth it?
- Third, what will I get out of the program other than a masters’ degree – will it challenge me? is the class internationally diverse? what about extracurriculars at LSE?
Based on my answers for these questions, for both LSE and other universities, and after receiving inputs from family, friends and certain individuals from the industry, I decided to accept my offer from LSE.
Hopefully, all this has helped you think about your priorities and what you want out of your degree. Ultimately, the decision is in your hands.