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Advice needed for international school selection

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Advice needed for international school selection [#permalink] New post 06 Jun 2009, 10:42
PLEASE I NEED YOUR ADVICE.

LBS R3 - Waitlisted

INSEAD R1 - Waitlisted

IE - Admitted

Oxford - Admitted

My first choice is INSEAD. 2nd choice is LBS. Oxford and IE are the 3rd choices. What should I do? If I keep on waiting I miss Oxford. If I choose IE, I can wait as the admission is good for 2 years.

My main dilemma: Is IE a better choice than Oxford?

I am an American, interested in working in a multinational in an international environment. Have no knowledge of Spanish, thus cannot work post-MBA in Latin America or in an exclusively Spanish speaking envirinment. My second working language is French and am currently working as a Sr. Product Manager in Montreal. Graduated from McGill in 2004 in Business.

Second question is if there is any chance of waitlisted students getting admitted at INSEAD or LBS? How can I improve the odds?

Would appreciate your input.
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Re: Advice needed for international school selection [#permalink] New post 06 Jun 2009, 16:02
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Hi buddy, firstly welcome to gmatclub, here, you do not need to post everywhere to get a response. One post here in the main schools thread is more than enough. I had to learn about deleting merging and splitting before I could rejig your post here :oops:

Secondly - many many congratulations on your IE and Oxford admits + all the waitlists. Such success in an application season is pretty uncommon.

To compare the schools we use the following thread :
ranks-and-clusterings-of-various-international-b-schools-78320.html

As you can see here, we consider Oxford an Elite school and IE a near-elite due to various factors (such as perceived brand, placements etc.). We have a strong contingent of Oxford folks at gmatclub who have done a wonderful job of advertising their school here :
sajid-business-school-university-of-oxford-78371.html

I have some experience with the LBS waitlist and I will talk about it further. From my experience, LBS rarely admits waitlisted candidates till the very end (i.e. July/August). However, LBS is one of the rare ultra-elite schools that looks at you seriously if you stick with the waitlist till the very end (i.e. you show that you really really want LBS). If you don't withdraw, by August, you will either be :
a) Admitted (tougher this year than others because of the high volume of applications)
b) Deferred (if they think that you were good enough to admit, but they couldn't because they filled the class already)
c) Special consideration for 2010 (if they think that you were close and with some minor improvements, will make the cut).

I had to deal with option c last year. For special consideration, I sent out an updated CV and a letter and I was admitted by September 2008 for class of 2009.

To choose you should look at your situation closely. The most important thing to consider would be when do you want to graduate ? Realistically, LBS in 2009 will be tough, simply because by the time they decide in 2009, it might be too late to attend Oxford. There is a strong chance that you might get admitted to LBS for class of 2010 (but then there is a slight chance that you wont - if that happens you still have IE in the bag). If you join class of 2010, you study further into the recession and perhaps graduate at a much better job market. On the other hand, if you want to attend a school and graduate ASAP, then Oxford and IE already present fantastic options.

Good luck.
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Re: Advice needed for international school selection [#permalink] New post 06 Jun 2009, 16:06
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Oxford definitely.

I don't know much about spanish schools and they don't have much coverage in this forum. From what I've heard in this and other forums, and heard from some people interested in Euro schools more than I am, IE has the weakest reputation among spanish schools. IESE seems much more reputable and it seems that spanish employers look more favourable to ESADE than IE.

What I've seen recently - and didn't like at all - is that IE had established online MBA program. Degree selling definitely is not something reputable school should do.

On the other hand, you have Oxford. I have no idea of your goals and career objectives, but I am sure Oxford brand would be stronger and stronger in the next couple of years. I doubt IE would open any door that Oxford won't. In the end of the day, with Oxford you will be proud of yourself as a member of one of the most prestigous alumni in the world. Uhhh, after all this advertising in Oxford's favor, I'm asking myself - should I pick Cambridge over Wharton anyway? :wink:
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Re: Advice needed for international school selection [#permalink] New post 06 Jun 2009, 23:18
Thankd bsd_lover and pathfinder_77 for your replies. Can you also shed some light on INSEAD waitlists? I have an admit from McGill as well, but I am more interested in international programs in Europe as I already have my undergrad degree from McGill.

I am sure you already know that a large majority of applicants at LBS R3 either got waitlisted or dinged. Hardly any admits.

I have to make the Oxford decision by June 28. IE admission is good for 2 years so I am not worried. If I plan to wait out for LBS and INSEAD waitlist, I might have to forego Oxford. Do you know if Oxford allows delay in making payment or defer the admission for next year? After your reply, I feel like waiting out.

Will appreciate any input.

Last edited by asadkiz on 07 Jun 2009, 01:18, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Advice needed for international school selection [#permalink] New post 07 Jun 2009, 00:31
Expert's post
asadkiz wrote:
Do you know if Oxford allows delay in making payment or defer the admission for next year? After your reply, I feel like waiting out.
Is it a deposit or full tuition payment? If deposit, what is the cost of the the Oxford "option"?
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Re: Advice needed for international school selection [#permalink] New post 07 Jun 2009, 01:14
It is a deposit of 5000 British Pounds. How much to follow, I am not sure, may be an Oxford admit might be able to shed more light.
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Re: Advice needed for international school selection [#permalink] New post 07 Jun 2009, 01:40
That is a pretty serious amount to have a mere "option". Perhaps if you shed some more light on your aims and priorities in terms of what you want from the b-school experience we might be able to go through your options in more depth.

As a guide line, try answering the following :
When do you want to graduate ?
What are your post MBA aims ?
What is your post MBA work location preference ?
What kind of recruiters would you require access too (try to name a few firms if you can)?
How much do you value the UE brand when compared to the E and NE brands ?
What is your b-school "budget" ?



asadkiz wrote:
It is a deposit of 5000 British Pounds. How much to follow, I am not sure, may be an Oxford admit might be able to shed more light.
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Re: Advice needed for international school selection [#permalink] New post 07 Jun 2009, 03:01
Hi Asadkiz,

And congrats with your admits. In my opinion, Oxford is a better choice than IE (especially if you are not planning to take agvantage of IE connections in Spain and Spanish-speaking countries). As for comparison to LBS and INSEAD, Oxford is not there yet: it has some pretty strong areas, but for traditional MBA industries LBS and INSEAD are better choices. Still, for some people with specific career aspirations (like myself) Oxford (or Cambridge) might have advantage even here.

I completely understand your desire to take all possible chances to get to your dream school. And I also know that Oxford deposit of 4650 GBP is quite large to pay it 'just in case'. So perhaps my experience could be of help. I was R1 Oxford admit, and got my decision when my financial situation was very, very poor. I simply had no money to pay that deposit in time. So, I wrote to SBS and explained my situation, and they were kind enough to grant me an extension - and I can say that without it, I wouldn't have now this nice blue avatar :)

So, as you see, the adcom is quite friendly there - perhaps they could give you the time you need. But you still will need to understand if you will play this INSEAD waitlist game till the end (Bsd-lover's experience with LBS was fascinating... but it indeed requires a very strong commitment to the school).
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Re: Advice needed for international school selection [#permalink] New post 07 Jun 2009, 05:35
Well, here is further information about me:

I would like to work for an MNC or an international MC firm. Other choice could be an international organization like World Bank etc.. Would like to travel and work in different countries. I was aiming for INSEAD so the UE will always be the first goal. Although I can live with E. It is not that I would mind working in Spain or Latin America, but it would have to be in a position or a company where I do not need to know Spanish like a native tongue, as post-MBA, I know that there is no way for me to master Spanish even if I study in Spain.

As most of my MBA budget will be borrowed money from banks and other organizations, I cannot comment on budget. Post-MBA in a year or two, depending upon the economic conditions, I would like to work in Dubai, as that will be my favourite place to work. I am 26, and although my heart is set on finishing my MBA by the next year, but if I were to wait for another year (if guaranteed a place) to go to INSEAD or LBS I would do it.

Last edited by asadkiz on 07 Jun 2009, 10:06, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Advice needed for international school selection [#permalink] New post 07 Jun 2009, 06:18
Haha that doesn't quite narrow it down too much (at least it doesn't help us eliminate anything). Lets start with Oxford vs IE for now. I wouldn't cause too much controversy by suggesting that between these two, Oxford should be the easy pick. It will cover most of your priorities :
- Superb International Brand (it doesn't really get much better than Oxford)
- Placements in multinationals in roles that will allow lots of travel (perhaps an Oxford admit can confirm whether World Bank hires there or not)
- Great international / diverse class

So I think it will really be a toss up between - how badly do you want that UE brand (LBS/INSEAD) and the uncertainty of WL vs the certainty of Oxford. You should probably also factor in that LBS will cost you appx 90K GBP (when you add up living and fees). Out of this you can realistically only borrow up to 40K GBP via the HSBC plan. The rest will come out of internships + other sources such as savings, personal loans and bank heists. So, is it worthwhile waiting a whole year (LBS class of 2010 will only start next august more than 15 months from now) for LBS ? Additionally, For LBS, I can give you some internal figures that I have access to in the LBS accepted students portal, via pm (believe me those numbers will not please you as a waitlister for 2009).

INSEAD is different. I don't know too much about the school as I was never interested in going there, but it has two intakes - one in January and another in September. So, in theory there should be more movement with the INSEAD waitlist (due to the larger overall class size). However, it might be best to check with an INSEAD admit / student (Nerdboy ?). Because you are prepared to wait, would be worthwhile asking INSEAD for a deferred place in its September intake ? Or would this require a full reapplication ? Even in this scenario you will need to wait nearly 15 months before you can start. Whereas at Oxford, you will be finished with the MBA by then.

So perhaps as greenoak suggested, you could ask Oxford to push out the deposit deadline for you so that you can buy some more time. OR, since you have made it clear that time of graduation is not the biggest priority, you could ask Oxford for a deferral of your place till next year (I know someone who got his LBS admit successfully deferred). This way you will have ALL your options open for next year and you can keep playing the waiting game with the UEs. I can assure you that LBS will definitely reward your patience with special attention next year.
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Re: Advice needed for international school selection [#permalink] New post 07 Jun 2009, 06:26
If you are keen on going to school this year, than go to Oxford. It is fine school at one of the best universities in the World and I'm sure it will play the game for you much better than IE, considering your international experience and goals.

On the other hand, your statistics work for you. Since you are 26, waiting for one more year wouldn't be bad at all for you. That way, you can work on some acpects of the application you find week, although you don't have much weaknesses being WLed at INSEAD and LBS. Maybe you should spend forecomming year in some interesting extraculicular or you could improve your GMAT (if you haven't, of course, scored something like 770 already :) ). Next year, besides reapplying to LBS and INSEAD, you could consider some USA ultra-elites. Some of them will do the trick in your post MBA international career for sure.
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Re: Advice needed for international school selection [#permalink] New post 07 Jun 2009, 09:14
So, as you already know, INSEAD is a great fit for your career goals - multinational employer, job that involves a lot of travel. Your work experience looks awesome (much better than mine in fact) and probably you were waitlisted due to a large number of applicants with a profile similar to yours. I don't really know, just speculating.

There is movement on the INSEAD waitlist, or so I've heard. A friend of mine was admitted last year from the waitlist in R3 - here's your anecdotal evidence. Yield is between 70 and 80 per cent and like bsd lover mentioned, the class size is large. According to rumours and random people on the Internet, many Americans with good profiles get admitted to INSEAD and UE schools in the US, sometimes they choose the other schools, you should have a good chance playing the waitlist game. I have no idea about how long waitlisted applicants have to wait for the final decision though. Furthermore, I honestly have no idea about the proper waitlist etiquette, meaning what info to send to the adcom, how often to call, etc.

Just to give you a fuller picture: INSEAD gives deferrals only in truly exceptional cases. The adcom decides on deferral requests and they expect to be impressed with a great story about the unexpected challenge that prevented you from attending. The same goes for re-applications: you need to have a compelling story, which explains why you are applying again and how you have improved since you last applied.

Finally, it is up to you. You may have a good chance with the waitlist and INSEAD is not deferral-friendly and not re-applicant-friendly. If this year is the year you need to start your MBA, go for Oxford. If INSEAD is your first and only love, then sit on the waitlist, because re-applying may be tough.
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Last edited by Nerdboy on 07 Jun 2009, 22:32, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Advice needed for international school selection [#permalink] New post 07 Jun 2009, 09:33
Thanks nerdboy. I would appreciate any info you give me regarding the movement in the waitlist at INSEAD.
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Re: Advice needed for international school selection [#permalink] New post 07 Jun 2009, 09:38
asadkiz wrote:
Thanks nerdboy. I would appreciate any info you give me regarding the movement in the waitlist at INSEAD.


For R1 admits, the deposit is due on the 26th. After that date, I will be able to report on the first movements, as some people will not pay the deposit for whatever reason and I will see them disappear from MBA connect and new people, presumably from the waitlist, should come up in their place.
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Re: Advice needed for international school selection [#permalink] New post 07 Jun 2009, 10:07
Thanks nerdboy, will appreciate your input.
Re: Advice needed for international school selection   [#permalink] 07 Jun 2009, 10:07
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