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Incoming MBA/M.S. Graduate Students
As you prepare for your arrival at Rensselaer, here are answers to some frequently asked questions, information on what to pack, a pre-arrival checklist, and a link to our events page. As more details become available, they will be shared with you.
Frequently Asked Questions
Click here for answers to questions frequently asked by Lally MBA/M.S. prospective graduate students.
- Confirm your admission status, click here.
- Pay $500 deposit on your application portal page, click here.
- International Student VISA process, click here.
- Find housing.
- Arrange for travel to Troy, New York. The closest airport to Rensselaer is Albany International Airport.
- Send your recommenders and mentors a thank-you note and let them know you are attending Lally.
- Check on cell phone service, banking, and change of address.
- See the resource section below for prep work on your MBA or M.S. program.
- Complete required health forms, click here.
M.S. in Business Analytics:
- In preparation for the M.S. in Business Analytics program, please brush up on your math background, especially Linear Algebra. Find supporting material at: Khan Academy or Coursera.
- R, Python, and SQL will be introduced in the Fall semester, but if you get a head start you can reduce some of the load and focus on other aspects of the courses. Find supporting material at: YouTube and Code School.
- Excel is still one of the most widely used tools and will be used in our program as well. The “Exploring Microsoft Office/Excel” series from Prentice Hall publishers is great to get you up to speed on Excel basics. For more information: Pearson (books for older Excel versions also exist).
- Note: If you have a Mac computer please be aware that not all software packages run on Macs, and software versions may have different functionality on PCs and Macs. In our courses we assume people are using a PC. Mac users are expected to adjust to the software used in class.
- Math Modules on Differential Calculus
- Math Modules on Linear Algebra
- How to Download R
- Basic Tutorial on R (Registration is free; R does not have to be installed to take the course)
- Additional R Tutorials (#8 on Reading Data from Files is recommended)
- Get Help/Experiment with R Functions
- R Programming Course
- Database Mini-Courses
M.S. in Quantitative Finance and Risk Analytics:
- In preparation for the M.S. in Quantitative Finance and Risk Analytics program, please brush up on your quantitative background, including multivariate calculus, linear algebra, partial differential equations, numerical analysis, statistics, and probability. For supporting material: websites like Khan Academy or Coursera.
- Matlab will be introduced in the Fall semester. If you have little or no programming experience, then you should practice some basic coding. If you do not have access to Matlab, you can get a version of Octave (essentially a free watered-down version of Matlab).
- Excel is still one of the most widely used tools and will be used in our program. The “Exploring Microsoft Office/Excel” series from Prentice Hall publishers is great to get you up to speed on Excel basics. For the most recent version, click here. (Books for older Excel versions also exist.)
- QFRA students should have good understanding of economics (both micro and macro-economic), finance, and investments. Economic topics include resource allocation, price determination, monetary and fiscal policy. Finance topics include time value of money, project evaluation, capital structure, corporate governance, and markets for financial assets and the structure of yields. Investment topics include sources of and demand for investment capital, operations of security markets, determination of investment policy, and procedures for analysis of securities. You can read any entry-level economic, finance, and investment books if you have no such background.
- QFRA students should be excellent in writing, speaking, and presentation skills (in English). YouTube has many free videos about how to improve your English skills. Please use the summer to practice your English as much as you can.
M.S. in Management:
- In preparation for the M.S. in Management program, please brush up on the latest business news, including items such as the selection of the new CEO of General Electric and the company's leadership succession plan.
- In preparation for the MBA program, please read, "No, Management Is Not A Profession," from the Harvard Business Review.
- In preparation for the M.S. in Supply Chain Management program, please brush up on your basic statistics and analytical modeling background. You can use websites such as Khan Academy or Coursera to find supporting material on basic statistics. You can brush up the basic operations research you might have done in your undergraduate.
- It would also be useful to get oriented towards supply chain management as a profession and the career paths available. Check out the APICS website for this.
- In preparation for the M.S. in Technology, Commercialization, and Entrepreneurship program, please read about and familiarize yourself with emerging technologies such as CRISPR, AI, robots, nanotechnology, internet of things, neuro-enhancements, genetically modified organisms, designer babies, reproductive technologies, transplants, synthetic biotechnology. Use the popular press like The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Economist, Financial Times, etc., as introductory material.
- Additionally, it would be good to consider reading "The Innovators" by Walter Issacson.
Steps for Career Success
To make the most of your time at Lally and maximize your career success, it will be helpful if you can accomplish the following before you arrive:
- Update your resume to include summer activities and add your pending degree and Lally to your “Education” section.
- Follow @LallyCareers on Twitter.
- Bookmark the Center for Career and Professional Development (CCPD) and the Lally Careers web page.
Once on campus, make the following your weekly career habits at Lally. Be prepared to block out time in your schedule and pursue these with purpose:
- Identify the internship and full-time opportunities that you wish to pursue.
- Sign into JobLink to check new job and internship postings.
- Attend all Professional Development Workshops (PDW), employer information sessions, and alumni/ae networking opportunities.
- Use your @rpi.edu e-mail address; that’s where we send job and internship opportunities.
- On that note, please look for e-mails from Tammy C. Bolduc.
Lally MBA/M.S. incoming graduate students are encouraged to register for Lally Connect - a voluntary, three-day pre-orientation on campus to experience life in the Capital Region and surrounding campus areas. Lally Connect is followed by a two-day required graduate school orientation.
International Student Arrivals
Timeline: Plan to be on campus ready to check-in at the International Office by August 18 at the earliest. It’s the first thing all new students must do before they can get their student ID, their email set up, register for classes, etc. This will give you time to participate in all the RPI events we’ve planned:
Lally Graduate Orientation
A required two-day orientation that includes events, student advisement, academic integrity education, and activities fair.
Lally Graduate Student Information and Mentor Agreement Form
Each Lally School graduate student is expected to fill out a student information and mentor agreement form at the beginning of the program.
To complete the form, click here.
Program Curriculum and Hours
Learn more about the academic curriculum and class hours for the Lally graduate programs.
Utlize the key resources and guidelines below to help you navigate your graduate student experience.
Code of Conduct and Academic Integrity
Rensselaer Campus Resources
- CDTA Bus: RPI Shuttle, Albany/Troy/Rensselaer, or Hudson River Express
- Department of Motor Vehicles (Change of address, licenses, residency, etc. Please also consult the International Services for Students and Scholars (ISSS) for additional information.)
- Local Restaurants
- Postal Service
- Rensselaer SEFCU (Credit Union)
- Student Campus Housing
- Student Off-Campus Housing
- Student Organizations and Service
- Taxis: Black and White Cab System (518) 272-6961, Capitaland Taxi (518) 270-8294, Acme Taxi (518) 233-8294
*For additional student life and campus resources, click here.