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700 GMAT+ Applicants who are DINGED from ALL their schools?

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Re: 700 GMAT+ Applicants who are DINGED from ALL their schools? [#permalink] New post 11 Mar 2011, 12:12
I agree that they are in 'sell' mode - but in my case, i got the admission consultant package (not hourly based) and guided me towards schools specific to my strengths. Not being overly confident because obviously something was wrong, but I am definitely a strong candidate - just a few things I could have improved (namely, R1 submittal)
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Re: 700 GMAT+ Applicants who are DINGED from ALL their schools? [#permalink] New post 11 Mar 2011, 14:25
I'm not convinced that R1 vs R2 makes that much of a difference. All I've heard is that R3 is the tough one..
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Re: 700 GMAT+ Applicants who are DINGED from ALL their schools? [#permalink] New post 11 Mar 2011, 14:34
I have heard of people who are 700 and well above who were turned away from schools. You can’t really rely on your GMAT score only to get you in. I hired a well known and very expensive consultant my first year that I tried and struck out. I partially blame the consultant for sucking the life and unique voice out of my essays. The members of the admissions committee who are reading the essays want to read something new and feel convinced that you are something special beyond having a talent for sentence correction. Some students who are very sound academically don’t really exude “future business leader”, they exude “follows rules really well”. Depending on the school you are targeting this could be a negative. Were you a dynamic and engaging fellow in your interview? Did you have a clear career path that called out why you needed an MBA as related to your future career goals how your history has lead you do that career? I really can’t answer why you specifically may be having a tough time, but it is certainly possible someone with even a perfect GMAT score could get dinged.

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Re: 700 GMAT+ Applicants who are DINGED from ALL their schools? [#permalink] New post 11 Mar 2011, 15:15
Like I said earlier- I agree GMAT is only one data point and don't see it as a golden ticket at all.

R1 at CBS makes a huge difference. Same with MIT this year

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Re: 700 GMAT+ Applicants who are DINGED from ALL their schools? [#permalink] New post 11 Mar 2011, 19:28
MIT and CBS seemed tough for engineers in Round 2 this year...I was questioning my applications after getting two dings in a row last week.
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Re: 700 GMAT+ Applicants who are DINGED from ALL their schools? [#permalink] New post 12 Mar 2011, 06:43
i think for some schools like CBS r1 makes a difference, same with schools that border top 15. But I think so many people try to apply R1 these days, it doesn't really help, and if you don't have the perfect profile (730+, 3.6+, 3+ years at MBB/BB), they may be inclined to adopt the "wait and see" strategy.
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Re: 700 GMAT+ Applicants who are DINGED from ALL their schools? [#permalink] New post 25 Mar 2011, 11:21
Boom, just got my final ding from Columbia. Struck out from all the schools I applied to without interview or waitlist. :(

I just threw a chair out the window.
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Re: 700 GMAT+ Applicants who are DINGED from ALL their schools? [#permalink] New post 25 Mar 2011, 11:28
730 gmat, 3.60 ivy league engineering degree. 2 years of IB exp.

ding from 7 schools i.e. Yale, NYU, CBS, HBS, Wharton, Booth and Stanford all r2
4 with interview..
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Re: 700 GMAT+ Applicants who are DINGED from ALL their schools? [#permalink] New post 25 Mar 2011, 12:55
noblepaladin wrote:
I just threw a chair out the window.


Chris Brown is that you???

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Re: 700 GMAT+ Applicants who are DINGED from ALL their schools? [#permalink] New post 26 Mar 2011, 06:11
noblepaladin wrote:
I got 750 GMAT, BS and Masters degree from MIT with 3.9/4.0 GPA. Got dinged by all schools WITHOUT an interview or waitlist so far. Columbia is the only one I am waiting on (but things don't look good, the schools are not that different and if I don't get an interview at any of them with my stats, then something is very wrong). My essays were pretty good. I had 3 current HBS students review them before submitting, and they agree that it was on par with their essays that got them admitted. My only weakness is that one of my managers wrote a really crappy recommendation letter and submitted it before asking me to look it over (he spent like 5 min on it, had typos and other weird comments, he said he would go over it with me first, but he just submitted it). I'm gonna go cry because I can't shake the feeling that if I had asked someone else to write the letter, then I would have succeeded (or at least gotten an interview at ONE of the schools). Now even if I want to try again next year, I would be a re-applicant which makes it a lot tougher and it sucks to have lost a year too.


dude, there is a big chance you are going to be successful in life with or without an MBA, and maybe that's what's the admissions people are thinking?
maybe they are going to let other people have a chance before you.. if i were you, i would NEVER let the dings be a detriment to myself, ever, because i know that i have a lot to offer anyways.

and i dont think Chris Brown went to MIT for undergrad, hehehehe..
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Re: 700 GMAT+ Applicants who are DINGED from ALL their schools? [#permalink] New post 26 Mar 2011, 06:44
reading this thread make me thinking to delay my applications for two more years :(
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Re: 700 GMAT+ Applicants who are DINGED from ALL their schools? [#permalink] New post 26 Mar 2011, 07:13
i guess im the newest member in this club "dinged from all schools". I dont have stellar stats to boast of but i did get an interview from wharton but my interviewer and i didnt have anything in common (he's from healthcare and i run a small investment management/VC firm). got a ding from duke without interview. and yes i applied in R2 for both schools. i was under the impression that there could be many things that could have gone wrong in my case (gmat 650, gpa-3.7, good recos, workex - 11 yrs, age-31) however people whom i have known with similar stats did get into Duke and Wharton!! and then i told myself that may be because im an international student and may be because i havent visited any schools or just may be because i dont fall into that 'younger group' category! they thought my app was not worthy. and no i havent used a consultant, i wrote all my essays. gist of the story im in the same boat! i dont know whether its a good thing or not but i only applied to 3 schools so far in the last 2 years - Yale, Wharton, Duke. so may be i should try my luck at other schools (then again i chose those schools for specific reasons and not just to get into some top school)
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Re: 700 GMAT+ Applicants who are DINGED from ALL their schools? [#permalink] New post 31 Mar 2011, 14:10
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I know I can't speak for myself since I got into one of my top schools. However I had a friend who applied 2 years ago, 750, 3.7 UG Johns Hopkins, Got a masters at Columbia, 4 years in management consulting and great EC. Got dinged from all 5 schools he applied. He got in last year and is at CBS.

The problem with his first app was just was just another profile. There were hundreds of applicants like him, and while everything he had was competitive, nothing stood out. In a realm where almost everyone is competitive as well you need to bring something to the table.

Also, base on all my conversations with friends who are applying this year with me, your voice really needs to come through in your essay. What makes you who you are (i know it's so cheesy and so much "soul-searching" but it's true). Even the adcomm people i've spoken to tell me that is so impt. Good luck for those reapplying...here's hoping 2nd times the charm for you!
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Re: 700 GMAT+ Applicants who are DINGED from ALL their schools? [#permalink] New post 31 Mar 2011, 15:54
ariel wrote:
rouzbie wrote:
That's a serious concern. One of my recommenders always submitted at the last minute and never let me review them. In the end I only got accepted at his Alma Mater so I guess he actually spent time on that one. Perhaps it's best to not even give the recommender the link to submit the reco without reviewing it first.


Did you just say that you're upset that your recommender didn't let you review what is supposed to be an anonymous recommendation?

i think for the letter of rec that you will send to top schools, one should get a letter from some one who is willing to show it to you and even consult with you about the things he will say in it... I actually send all the notes i wanted in my LOR to the recommender, then he sent me the letter, then i send it to a consultant to edit it and gave it back to him to send... these days admission to top schools is so competitive that you gota do what you gota do...
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Re: 700 GMAT+ Applicants who are DINGED from ALL their schools? [#permalink] New post 07 Apr 2011, 09:57
Add me to the list. JD/MBA applicant with 760/176 lsat/3.3 ugpa/3.8 msgpa/7 WE tech consulting. Dinged from HBS, Stanford, wharton, booth, kellogg, and yale. Got interviews at booth, kellogg and yale. Thought the interviews went really well, but something obviously went wrong somewhere. I had very exp/good consultants, and though it didn't put me over the top, my essays would have been that much worse without the help. I might agree with tigerbeck that my essays became rather "traditional" after all the editing. . .maybe I should have sold a more interesting career path? Not sure. Trying to regroup and set a course to reapply, but its been crushing to get ding after ding.
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Re: 700 GMAT+ Applicants who are DINGED from ALL their schools? [#permalink] New post 07 Apr 2011, 12:37
imo it's just getting harder to get into schools. Most people should set their sights on the 10-30 ranked schools. I'm kind of in the same boat, but I'm thankful I at least got accepted into one of the schools I applied to (Marshall). With a 770 GMAT and a solid background I thought I'd at least have gotten an interview from UCLA. *shrug*
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Re: 700 GMAT+ Applicants who are DINGED from ALL their schools? [#permalink] New post 07 Apr 2011, 15:33
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A good GMAT score is just one of many requirements, and far from a golden ticket. It's more of a checkpoint than anything.

760/3.6 in finance at a top 30 public school/working since 2006 in corporate finance for Fortune 500, good work experience/progression and decent EC. 26 now, male, mixed race, US born and based.

This was my 3rd year applying and I finally got in somewhere. The two previous years I was a little short on WE and EC, but mostly I think it was my career goals combined with setting my sights too high on schools (didn't have a "safety" school because I was applying pretty early and didn't mind too much waiting another year). I thought I wanted to go into investment management before, but I wasn't 100% sure and didn't truly know what it took, and I think that came through in my essays and interviews. My previous application years:

Class of 2011, R1:
Ding w/Interview: Booth
Ding w/o Interview: H/S/W, Anderson, Haas

Got some feedback from Anderson, said my academics were great, first essay was good (I consider myself a pretty good writer and others have told me the same), but 2nd-3rd essays could use a little work. Also was encouraged to apply R2 next year since it's just that much more WE to add.

Class of 2012, R2:
WL w/Interview, never got off: Stern
Ding w/Interview: Anderson, Kellogg (they interview everyone though)
Ding w/o Interview: Columbia, Sloan, Haas, Booth

This year I really attacked every possible area of my application. I read books on getting in and applied them to my essays and really everything about my apps. I used my network and got a couple people to write notes to admissions for me where possible. I gave my recommenders a list of accomplishments that they could structure their letters on (and gave different lists to each so they wouldn't overlap too much), and changed one of the writers to someone who could give a more diverse perspective. I focused more on differentiating myself in the essays and having a unique story and voice, rather than listing successes - this was especially important since I'm a very common type of applicant. I also got involved with even more EC's, and took leadership roles. I did hire an admissions consultant, but only for 1hr of work - just had her evaluate me overall, and look at old my essay package for Columbia as well as a draft of a "generic" reapplicant essay.

Most importantly, I did some soul-searching and career research and realized that in the long run, investment mgmt really wasn't for me and my current career in corporate finance was a pretty good place to be, especially in a more exciting industry. My results:

Class of 2013, R2:
Admitted: Ross, Duke (despite by far my worst interview)
Interviewed, still waiting: Stern
WL w/Interview: Booth, Tuck, Anderson (which I was a little annoyed about, since it was my 3rd year applying... just ding me if you're still not sure! I had an outstanding interview as well.)
Dinged w/Interview: Kellogg 1Y (there are only ~80 people in that program, so I blame it on that fact :) )
Dinged w/o Interview: Columbia, although I believe this was due to a dumb mistake I made on an essay from the previous year.

7 interviews certainly is a better result than before, and it feels great to get in somewhere, plus knowing that I was/am close with other schools.

My advice would be to *really* focus on what you want in an MBA program and be honest with yourself about how ready you are. WHEN you are ready, examine and aggressively address every part of your application that you can. There are a lot of very smart and driven people out there, so you have to make sure you're not just one of them, but that you stand out among them. It isn't as hard as it seems once you break down your app into pieces and think about what you can do to address each one.
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Re: 700 GMAT+ Applicants who are DINGED from ALL their schools? [#permalink] New post 07 Apr 2011, 21:30
@kelea
@SeattleMBA2013

both of you thanks a lot. you took time to write and encourage everyone here, yup probably all this is for good and i hope all those who are reapplying make it this time. thanks once again and all the best.
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Re: 700 GMAT+ Applicants who are DINGED from ALL their schools? [#permalink] New post 08 Apr 2011, 05:16
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One thing I've learned from this entire application process is that it's not always fair. And I still can't understand how it works. I have friends who got into Harvard, but were rejected by Wharton and NYU. There's no rhyme or reason sometimes for how the adcom makes decisions. Last year, I should've posted on this board.. dings from Harvard, Stanford, Wharton, Kellogg and Sloan, but with a 740 gmat, 3.2 GPA, 4 years WE at a top Fortune 500 company and a relatively unique profile. I did get interviews at all, though.

It's not easy to "improve" your application when there's no glaring area of weakness, but here's what I figured out and how I improved my application and got into Wharton, Booth, Kellogg and possibly Columbia this year (only ding was HBS and I already knew they don't like re-applicants).

1) Recommendations: My recommenders last time were nice but I never gave them any guidance on what to focus on. This time, I sat down with each of my recommenders to discuss what I'd done in the last few years. First off, I was on the same page as my recommenders on my strengths and weaknesses, so I knew not to tout something they considered a weakness as a strength on my application. Additionally, I also knew how to explain my weaknesses in my essays. Also, by talking with them, I found that they could highlight different areas of my application so that I could have more room in my essays to showcase other facets.

2) Essays: Frankly, I thought mine were fine the first time. For the re-apps, I did edit and add how I'd improved in the last year. But I made sure to first write a list of all of the key stories I wanted to write about, I determined what strengths they described, and then picked applicable stories for each schools, making sure that I'd covered all of the leadership dimensions I wanted. Anyway, make sure you highlight your uniqueness in your essays. There are definitely too many cookie cutter models out there, so anything to show how you are different will make a big difference.

3) Interviews: For those of you who did interview, did you feel like it was your best version of yourself? No? Neither did I. Honestly though, neither were my Wharton and Kellogg interviews this year. I thought they were horrible. Very brief, I felt like I was rambling, etc.. So definitely not my strong area. But, it obviously didn't make a difference. Anyway, I'd still definitely recommend practicing :) Also, last year, people told me that I had to interview on campus. That's not true. I didn't interview on campus this go around (barring Tuck) and if anything, it helped me. If you want to visit the campus, sure, go interview there. But don't JUST interview on campus because you think you'll have no shot otherwise.

4) Relation to the school: This one was huge (in my opinion). Make sure the schools know that you like them. Not just by applying to them or visiting them once or twice (as I mentioned in the last section, not compulsory).. Meet alumni, get to know alumni in your company (perhaps they could become a future recommender), go to events, research the school, be able to talk about specific attributes of the school in your essays / interviews (i.e. how it's too bad that the Manhattanville campus won't be complete for at least another 5 years, but that you'll love going to Uris, etc...) Also, especially if you plan on moving back to the same area post-graduation, find out how you can help your local alumni community. Unless you're going to a huge MBA hub like NYC, San Francisco, Chicago, etc..., most other cities may have smaller alumni chapters so they'd love to bring you back to their area. Just show the local alumni chapters how you can make a difference and that will go a long way.

5) Yourself: Even with all of these areas covered, it doesn't hurt to improve yourself as well. Try to seek out more leadership opportunities, both at work and outside of work. The one good thing about re-applying? It takes much less time! Seriously, I spent ~50% less time this year on applications than I did last year. That means you'll have more time to spend on other activities, so get involved in your community, learn more about your intended post-MBA career, etc..

I seriously wish you all the best of luck. I certainly know how depressing it is when you know you're a solid candidate for these schools and you get rejected outright. But let me tell you.. that makes the happiness so much more intense when you get in the second time :) I know, not much consolation now but I know you all will feel it next year!!
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Re: 700 GMAT+ Applicants who are DINGED from ALL their schools? [#permalink] New post 08 Apr 2011, 06:11
@sratzi, thanks for such a detailed analysis and response and it does help a lot atleast to me. so finally which school are you planning to join? All the very best and have a wonderful time.
Re: 700 GMAT+ Applicants who are DINGED from ALL their schools?   [#permalink] 08 Apr 2011, 06:11
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