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-5yrs solid work experience including one year in Chevron, graduate engineer 2 years Systems Engineer and currently (close to 2 years) in a top government petroleum regulatory agency(a very prestigious job in my country, manage a lot of people, so lots of leadership), working in a technical representative, ensure oil/gas companies' compliance to countries regulatory framework, regulatory guidance and monitory, technical safety control
-GMAT scheduled next month, circa 700 score guaranteed, solid GRE scores though (153V, 160Q)
-low undergraduate GPA from a Nigerian University (B.Eng Chemical Engineering, 2006) -around 60% average... had to support myself during... -very high grade on the masters from a top ranked U.K university (MSc Process and Systems Engineering) - just a percentage point shy from finishing with the top degree. I had a 69% average and a 70% average makes a 'distinction', which is the highest grade.
-deeply involved in volunteer mentoring and basketball coaching, high school kids, held a few leadership position Class Representative of my MSc class(a diverse, multi cultured group of pple)
Others: -got a few scholarship awards especially a much vaunted postgraduate scholarship award for my masters study. -have started a couple of successful business endeavors in the past, currently involved in one, a very sustainable business that helps rural farmers find a market for their produce(really excited about this one)
Would really appreciate constructive feedback.... Thanks a lot
Hey there my friend, You have some really GREAT stuff in your profile, dude... stuff that will help you stand out and present yourself as a unique candidate, and if you can land that GMAT as you hope, I think you can do quite well. Let's have a closer look:
PROS: 1. You come from Nigeria. The schools do NOT see a lot of Nigerian candidates 2. You come from a very strong industry 3. You have lots of real leadership 4. AND international experience 5. AND good volunteer work 6. AND you have some business endeavors in your background (love to hear more about these)
CONS: 1 GPA 2. A bit on the older side. 3. Goals.
Since your advantages are your advantages, for the moment we don't need to discuss those tooooooo much... just use them!
Instead let's focus on what you can DO to counteract your disadvantages: 1. GPA - like you wrote, but you should explain this in an optional essay also pointing to your success in your Masters and hopefully also your fantastic GMAT! ) You want to firstly give them the reason why you did less well than you could have, and secondly SHOW that you can do even better (like you did in your Masters) 2. Age - Just put lots of emphasis showing how useful the MBA will be to you, and how useful it will be to you NOW 3. Goals - This one is easiest: change them. Going into finance as a goal first of all makes little sense given your experience, and secondly IMHO it makes your profile more boring. Finance is what EVERYBODY wants to do... but it seems to me like you have a more unique profile, with lots of leadership, with these interesting endeavors, etc.... and I think you want to come up with goals with both a) make sense given your past experience b) are as interesting and unique as you can propose....
So those are some things to think about as you approach your application strategy. Hope this helps you out!
LOW GPA: I will definitely write an optional essay to detail how I didnt perform at my best during my undergraduate years, but I am just going to be brutally honest(self supporting, plus a little immaturity)...
GOALS: You mentioned I should change my goals?
Let me clarify my goals better so you would help advice me better. Short term: I want to get in finance/consulting or business development, not just in any industry, but only energy/clean tech industry. I want to switch functions within the same industry. From being an engineer in the regulatory industry to business development/consulting in the same industry. My reason is, I have seen so many opportunities that aren't being taken advantage of and I yearn to have the skills to do something about it. With the knowledge in operations, finance, marketing and even entrepreneurship etc that the MBA offers, I feel I would be in a position to learn how to better take advantage of these.
I have also seen licenses granted arbitrarily to companies to develop projects, which I believe are ill-advised. I want to eventually (long term) be in a policy making position in my country.
Another reason is because the technical side has a very flat learning curve(after the 1st year) in the regulatory industry that I happen to be in currently. Not so many dynamic changes going on here, not a kind of place for 'young', exuberant person like myself to stay long in. Job becomes repetitive too soon. For job security? Yes... Long term renumeration benefits? Yes... But innovation, change, personal development? Not sooo much.
Yes, you're right, not so many people go for the MBA where I'm from. In fact, I'm getting so much flak for wanting to do this. I just dont want to settle for mediocrity, I am just so passionate about the things that I want to do.
Do you think being from my 'underrepresented' group can give me a shot in a Stanford or a Wharton? Stanford seems to be big on African applicants lately.
My target programs now: UCLA Anderson, UC Berkeley, Vanderbilt Owen, Georgia TEch. Let me know about these also.
NOW your goals make a LOT more sense! Just make sure you EXPLICITLY build this connection between your past and your future.
As for being an underrepresented candidate, yes it helps a lot. It helps especially if you have a specific idea to go back and contribute to your country (rather than just go make a whole bunch of money). IS it good enough to get you into Stanford? In of itself, probably not. And given your age, your probably a long shot. Can you try anyways? Sure! Everybody should have at least one 'impossible' dream school in their list. Because you never know.
Finally, given your goals, you should REALLY think about applying to McCombs.... I will copy some links from you about energy programs: