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Advice for an Old/Low GPA/No ECs/Weak leadership Candidate

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Advice for an Old/Low GPA/No ECs/Weak leadership Candidate [#permalink] New post 24 Dec 2009, 04:21
Hi Alex,

I would be grateful if you could evaluate my profile. I'm applying next year.

31/M/Canadian

760 (50Q/42V/5.5 AWA) GMAT

2.8ish GPA Computer Science from a Canadian university

7.5 years experience of IT

EC: completing CFA Level I and studying for Level II now.

I'm interested in career switching into IM.

The schools that I'm considering:
Dream: (Pick 1 of) Chicago, Columbia ED
Reach: (Pick 3 of) NYU, Cornell, Darden, Ross, Duke
Sweet: Wisconsin ASAP

1. Does the list of schools seem realistic given my background and goals?
2. Would it be advisable to say that I'm interested in IB in my essays (higher placement and less career switch risk) and then after I'm admitted, ignore what I said in the essays and go hardcore for IM?
3. Are children viewed as a slight negative by AdCom?

Thanks for reading this post.

Last edited by StevenFaulkner on 11 Jan 2010, 03:41, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Advice for an Old/Low GPA/No ECs/Weak leadership Candidate [#permalink] New post 24 Dec 2009, 11:27
Apply to Columbia ED, Chicago, NYU, Cornell, Yale and Wisconsin. Yale is actually a better bet than Duke, Darden, Michigan in terms of finance (it's closer to NYC, and has stronger historical ties to Wall Street) and your chances at Yale are roughly the same as it would be for Duke/Darden/Michigan/NYU/Cornell.

As for your career goals, you're probably better off talking about banking/research than going straight into IM - especially when you're competing against your fellow MBAs for those IM jobs - and most of them will have pre-MBA finance experience.

As for kids, roughly 1/3rd to 1/2 of the married folks in b-school have children (don't quote me on that - it's just based on anecdotal feedback and experience). Adcoms don't really have an opinion on it - it's your life, and they aren't in a position to judge you as a parent or how you balance kids and career. As a parent, no matter which b-school you end up, there will be a very supportive network for you and your wife and kids - in fact, it's been said that the partners end up becoming more tight knit than the students themselves because they end up babysitting each other's kids and spending a lot of time with each other. So I wouldn't worry about it - b-schools are very good at making sure that your wife and kids are an integral part of the experience.
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Re: Advice for an Old/Low GPA/No ECs/Weak leadership Candidate [#permalink] New post 03 Jan 2010, 18:35
Thanks Alex for the quick response and helpful advice. Assuming well executed applications, what would you say my chances are at the 6 schools that you recommend that I apply to?

I'm just curious about whether I'm dealing with all hail marys here. I'd rather focus on realistic schools than waste too much time on lottery tickets.
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Re: Advice for an Old/Low GPA/No ECs/Weak leadership Candidate [#permalink] New post 05 Jan 2010, 15:25
Based on your profile, you should be competitive. I don't know. Just apply to those schools and find out. It's hard to say because it comes down to your written application and interview. It's about the person behind the resume -- some folks are much more dynamic and compelling than their surface profile suggests; and others have the depth of a pizza box. I mentioned those six schools because they give you a range of schools where you have a realistic shot of getting in.
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Re: Advice for an Old/Low GPA/No ECs/Weak leadership Candidate [#permalink] New post 06 Jan 2010, 06:36
Thanks Alex. If it's going to come down to how well I articulate my story and my goals and how the school helps me acheive those goals then that's all I need to know to move forward.
Re: Advice for an Old/Low GPA/No ECs/Weak leadership Candidate   [#permalink] 06 Jan 2010, 06:36
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