There's a lot of ways to get an MBA, but most people agree that there are several clearly defined paths. One is to work for a few years after college and then enter a program. Another is to work at a firm that expects you to get an MBA after two years and will either assist with the tuition or cover all of it, then welcome you back when you've got the degree.
At the top programs, these two traditional paths apply mainly to graduates of Ivy League schools, along with the next educational tier or two down (major state schools and smaller privates). Typically, the professionals returning to school for an MBA have spent their time on Wall Street, at one of the three big consulting firms (McKinsey, Bain, BCG), or at a major multinational firm. But there's a another path.
Business schools like to have former members of the military in, so to speak, their educational ranks. This affection applies to active-duty military, as well as former soldiers, sailors, and airmen who've left the service. These folks often require financial support (pretty much everyone requires financial support to obtain an MBA, unless they saved enough while working to cover the cost).
That's why it's great to see USC announce an increase to a scholarship fund established in 1986, by a USC grad and former Marine. This is from the press release:
USC trustee William J. Schoen BS '60, MBA '63 and his wife, Sharon, have made a $10 million gift to the university in support of military veteran scholarships.
The Schoen Family Scholarship Program for Veterans Endowment was established at USC in 1986. Their recent $10 million gift will increase the endowment significantly and create new funding for veterans who attend USC. The gift provides additional support for veterans studying in the USC Marshall School of Business, as well as the USC Viterbi School of Engineering.
With the most recent gift, the Schoen family has contributed a total of $16 million, and to date the endowment has provided $1.2 million in financial support to 173 students at the university.