I am currently in my last year at a top 50 world ranked (top 2/3 in Canada) university . I am studying Electrical Engineering with a specialization in Nanotechnology/Microsystems.
Average: Cumulative 75% (No idea what the conversion is to a 4.0 GPA, but 80% is dean's list). I had a terrible second year, and actually ended up failing the year. During the year I was taking 21/22 credits a semester and Captaining a Junior Hockey team 3 hours away from my school. A typical day for me started at 5:30 am (I live 2 hours from my school, leave at 6am for an 8am class) and ended at 1 am (practice until 12). Obviously this is a huge blemish on my application, but I hope the mitigating circumstances, coupled with how I have used the experience, will alleviate some of the damage. Third Year average was 87%, and so far my Fourth year average is 90%.
GMAT: 730 (50Q 38V). Would you recommend retaking this, if I were to have a shot at 2+2/GSB? I have scored in the range of 720-780 on prep, with the prep exams closest to my actual test date >750. I've heard that a small increase in the GMAT wont really affect my application, so if there is a better use of my time, I am open to suggestions.
Extra Curricular: As I mentioned before, I had been a fairly high level hockey player. Played for regional teams, captained a Junior team (was also 2nd in the league for points). I have also traveled to Japan to play hockey as part of a program that chooses a team of top Japanese-Canadian hockey players. Aside from that, I have played Sr. B Lacrosse (second highest amateur level, although the majority of the highest level are pro players that play Sr.A in the offseason), played regional rugby in highschool (is this relevant?) and I am now a fairly avid rock climber. I'm also a fairly dedicated weightlifter, and would have qualified for nationals (if my application didnt screw up
) Aside from sports, I am a volunteer with the YWCA. I am responsible for leading a group of boys through discussions and activities aimed at increasing their understanding of self-awareness, self-esteem and social responsibility. We will be teaming with a group of girls to tackle a community project that will be completed in April.
Recs: Have three options at the moment.
1. Research Supervisor. I'm very confident I would get a solid rec from him, as I've had him for a professor before (scored 99% in his class) and subsequently was offered a pretty interesting/unique research opportunity.
2: Volunteer Supervisor. Also think this rec would be strong. I'd like to stress my soft skills a lot, as I believe they differentiate me from the majority of STEM majors. My volunteer work definitely stresses a skill set that is not taught/practice as often in my EE studies.
3: Mentor. Successful Entrepreneur, now involved in a Fortune 200 company (I believe he is Director of Marketing). Was also accepted into Stanford, but turned them down to pursue his venture (is this relevant?). My interaction with him is limited, so I'm leaning away from using him as a rec.
Goals: I originally decided to specialize in Nanotech because I felt that it was the future, but after exploring the academic side, I realize that the majority of people in this field are focused solely on research. I would like to be able to use my knowledge/interest in Nanotech, alongside the skills/resources gained at a B-school, to bridge the gap between the research into Nanotech and the consumer possibilities. My focus would be in either my own entrepreneurial venture or other high tech startups.
Well, its a mouth(or page?)ful. Any insight would be greatly appreciated. Do you think that I should apply for 2+2 or GSB, or wait until I have some experience under my belt.