Is there a typical MO PhD Student?
No. We have a wide variety of backgrounds and interests, which makes our PhD program so vibrant. One student was a physician before coming to Michigan, others have relevant Master’s degrees, some have a decade of work experience, and a few have no formal work experience. What unites the students is their passion for high quality, impactful research and their genuine interest in contributing to the research community in the department.
What do MO PhD students do in their free time? Do they have free time?
The first two years of the program are extremely time consuming, but our students make time for hobbies and interests from day one to keep balanced. A couple of students are regulars at yoga, one is an avid tennis player, another is a swimmer, and one enjoys basketball. Additionally, students participate in various musical activities, knitting, and hiking. There is a PhD Student government in Michigan Ross (The PhD Forum) which puts on various social activities for students throughout the year. These activities include kayaking, bowling, karaoke and happy hours. The Ann Arbor community has all sorts of cultural events and eateries as well. Some of our students are also regular attendees at UM football games. Go Blue!
Where do MO PhD students live in Ann Arbor?
Our students live all over Ann Arbor. Some opt for off-campus housing downtown or on the outskirts of Ann Arbor, while others choose on-campus housing. When it comes to housing in Ann Arbor, you can find anything you would like. Some students joke that in the first two years they live in Ross, but we encourage all students to spend some time away from the school.
Is it difficult to get financial support for my own research?
We are very fortunate at Michigan Ross to have several funding sources to support doctoral student research as well as collaborative research with faculty members. Our students regularly apply for and receive small and large grants to conduct their work. Additionally, the University of Michigan has many mechanisms in place to support our research.
Are there any interactions with the MBA program at Ross?
Most of our students do not interact regularly with the MBA students, but occasionally they take classes together and we see each other in the Seigle Café daily. The MBA students have many clubs and activities which some of our students participate in as well. These interactions range from sports clubs to professional development groups and the Wolverine Wine Club. The MBA student body has been quite welcoming to our students.
Do you have any advice for increasing my chances of admission?
The expectations for the qualifications of our applicants are quite high. We regularly receive more than 100 applications for two-three slots in the program. However, one way to really stand out in the application process is to explain why you want to pursue a PhD in the department of Management and Organizations at Ross. We put a premium on fit with our department, in terms of both related research as well as our collaborative culture. An understanding of how you fit with our department will emerge from learning about our students and faculty.
What types of jobs do the graduates of the program land?
As you can see from our recent graduate page, students go on to careers in business schools around the world following the completion of our program. Some doctoral programs send their alumni to consulting firms and think tanks – our program generally does not prepare our students for these kinds of careers. We are looking for applicants who are dedicated to long-term careers in business academia.
Are there certain faculty members who are better at mentoring doctoral students than others?
We are very fortunate to have several faculty members who regularly work with doctoral students. They all have many things to teach our students, which is why many of our students will rotate and work with several faculty members during their time in the program. Our faculty members enjoy their time and interactions with doctoral students, which leads to strong research productivity and high quality professional connections.
Are there any mechanisms for mentorship or development within the program?
In our department, the students have created a formal mentorship program where each incoming student is paired with a more senior student in a mentoring relationship. These pairs meet several times a year to discuss progress in the program and all types of questions, which arise. Additionally our students meet monthly as a group to discuss different aspects of scholarship and professional development. These meetings prepare students for the Academy of Management meetings as well as program milestones (the 2nd year paper, prelim exams, etc.).
How can I learn more about the MO PhD program?
Please explore the various aspects of our website to learn more about the program. Specifically you can see the types of research projects our faculty are currently working on as well as our doctoral students. You can also learn about our recent alumni and their research. If you still have questions following your explorations, feel free to email one of our current doctoral student ambassadors or alumni ambassadors to learn more about the program. If you are in the Ann Arbor area, you are welcome to attend one of our weekly Brown Bag seminars to meet some of the department members in person.