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Eight Tips to Making the Most of Forté MBA Forums

Forté MBA Forums are a valuable resource for business school research. These in-person (and virtual) MBA fairs are a great opportunity to connect with admissions reps at high-ranking business schools, hear from successful MBA women who have been in your shoes, and expand your network. If you’re attending a Forum — or other in-person MBA recruitment event — we can help you prepare to make the most of your experience.

Before You Attend

1. Come prepared — and with a goal

MBA fairs like the Forté MBA Forums can be large, busy, and sometimes overwhelming. But you got this!

The first step (and maybe the most important one) is to come to the MBA Forum prepared. Ask yourself why you are attending the Forum and what you hope to walk away with. Knowing your goal will ensure you are able to maximize your experience.

You may want to get a better understanding of the degree and its impact — don’t miss our alumni panel. You may want to meet with a specific school to get your questions answered face-to-face — check the list of schools that will be in attendance at the Forum. Or, you may be most excited to get tips on the application process — attend our admissions panel.

2. Know your why

Business school reps will ask why you are interested in an MBA. Use this opportunity to be your authentic self. If you’re still in the exploration phase, be honest. Let schools know this is your first step to learn if the MBA journey is right for you. If you know you want to level up to a leadership role in a specific industry, share that too. Reps can tell you which courses in their programs can help you get there.

Event Day

3. Dress for success

Some candidates will be in professional attire, coming straight to the Forum from a formal workplace. Others will be dressed more casually and that’s okay too. You can expect most business school reps to be in business casual attire.

You will get a name tag — wear it! Admissions reps want to remember your name if you have a great conversation.

4. Make business school connections

If there is a specific school you want to talk to, don’t wait until the end of the event. Visit early to ensure you have time to get all your questions answered.

Don’t know where to begin? Attending sessions like the alumni or admissions panels is a great way to hear many perspectives and learn about a variety of schools. After the sessions, you can visit a business school’s table to learn even more.

Another great thing about the Forté MBA Forums is that they are open fairs and you can talk to anyone. If you need a starting point, talk to a school in an area you live/have lived, where you went to undergrad, or where you are from. When in doubt, visit a school that isn’t busy. Admissions reps are there because they want to meet you.

5. Don’t forget to network

The other Forum attendees may be your future classmates, so start building those relationships now. When waiting in line to talk to a business school or grabbing a drink of water, introduce yourself to those around you.

After the Event

6. Reflect on your conversations

Think back on all the conversations you had with different business schools at the Forum. Generally, MBA fairs, like the Forté MBA Forums, with a lot of school exhibitors are a way for you to add options to your interest list rather than eliminate them. Don’t let one person or tough interaction remove a school from your list. Conversely, one great interaction is not the only reason to add a school to your list. By reflecting on your experience, you’ll be able to stay true to what is most important to you.

7. Follow up with your new connections

If you had a great conversation with an admissions rep or MBA alum, send them a thank you email. After 10 years in admissions and traveling to over 20 countries to recruit candidates, I can tell you I still remember the great conversations. Also, a thoughtful follow-up email stands out. The Forum is as much about building relationships as it is about exploring programs, and sending a follow-up will keep the conversation going.

8. Be confident

There is a place for you in business school. Forté has nearly 60 full-time MBA partners throughout the U.S., Canada, the U.K., and Europe. I can assure you there are many amazing MBA programs out there looking for candidates just like you!

Start Your MBA Journey at a Forté MBA Forum

We are excited to visit 10 cities across the U.S. and Canada for free in-person MBA Forums this month. If you can’t be there in person, attend one of our free virtual MBA Forums this fall. If you live in the U.K., we just announced our MBA Forum in London in October 2023.

Register today to join Forté — and hundreds of attendees — to kick off your MBA journey!

Want more tips to maximize your experience? Watch our virtual session to hear from MBA admissions reps.

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