QI’m presently enrolled in the MBA program of a top-five B-school. My interests are the following: Politics, political theory, consulting (media, advertising, political), marketing, and someday entrepreneurship.
I am 100% certain about wanting the MBA. I know that the business education and networking opportunities it will provide will only help me in the long run. And the long-term vision I have for myself is owning my own political consulting/media consulting firm. But it doesn’t end there.
Let’s just be clear that I’m not kidding myself. I want to live comfortably and make decent money. But I do believe it is possible to earn six figures and keep one’s soul. I care deeply about activism and scholarship. I want to contribute to the understanding of political science and philosophy—I want to be the next John Rawls. I want to help shape the local, state, and (someday) the national agenda. I want the whole Don Quixote experience—chasing after windmills like socialized medicine and marriage rights for GLBT partners.
However, I don’t want to be “the guy.” The one that gets elected and lives his life under a microscope. I want to be the guy that helps him, advises him, and perhaps gets a hefty chunk of his ad buy.
For several years prior to the start of my MBA (which begins in a week), I knew I was aiming for a JD-MBA, regardless of whether I earned them in a joint program or independently. I thought a JD was the only option if I was interested in political advising/consulting/media work. I then took a step back and thought about it. I now think a PhD in political science or political philosophy might be better aligned with my interests. I have NO desire to be a corporate lawyer. I would much rather spend sleepless nights toiling over a dissertation (something that will at least create new knowledge) than a client’s case or private equity positions.
My university has excellent dual-degree options for both a JD-MBA and PhD-MBA, so either is a possibility. What are your thoughts? I really need some guidance here, and, thus far, I have found few who can offer any help. I place my faith in you.
AWow, I’m honored you place your faith in me. Especially since you’re way more focused than I ever was. I’m also honored that someone so ambitious and earnest is a Bitter Lawyer fan.
Having said that, here’s my advice: If you really are that committed to political/media consulting and “making a difference,” I’d go for the JD/MBA. First off, it will take less time and cost less money. Second, a law degree is a great tool for political science and social reform. I actually riffed a lot more on this topic before and, instead of rehashing it, refer you to “I’m Deciding Between a JD and a JD/MBA.”
Whatever you do, good luck.
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