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Any shot at Duke??---and a few other questions

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Any shot at Duke??---and a few other questions [#permalink] New post 30 Dec 2010, 13:13
I just took the GMAT today and scored a 730 (Q48, V41). I am hoping to have my applications out in the next few weeks. I know that is fast and from reading on here it is recommended to take your time. But I would really like to start my MBA this upcoming Fall if possible, and I am obviously already behind. I plan on doing a lot of research in the next week or so on possible schools, as well as on figuring out my potential area of concentration and future career plans. I would like to pursue a career that can combine my engineering knowledge and future business knowledge. I am thinking something like project managment, general management, or operations logistics for a top construction company or land developing company. I would really like to get involved in a land development company that develops sustainable, "green", LEED certified communites. But I will hammer all that out in the next week hopefully. Here is my profile as of now:

24 years old--Male
Undergrad--Georgia Tech--Civil Engineering-- G.P.A--2.9
GMAT--730 (Q48/V41)
Work experience--about 2.5 years as a Structural Engineer for a smaller company (~300 employees, ~90 million in sales a year) in Birmingham, AL. I have worked directly under the Chief Engineer the entire time and I suppose I am second in command regarding overseeing engineering and work performed by draftsmen.

So finally to my main questions:

1) I know my GPA wasn't very high, but not to sound arrogant, engineering school at Georgia Tech is extremely difficult (#4 ranked engineering school in the nation). Will B-schools take this fact into great consideration or not really?

2) Since I didn't work for a large or top notch fortune 500 company will that hurt my applications?

3) At this time I would say Duke is my top choice for B-school. What are my chances of being accepted into Duke?

4) The University of Alabama is probably my back up school right now. However it might could be my choice if I were to get a full scholarship. What would you say my chances of a full ride to UA might be?

Thank you to everyone for any advice and opinions!!
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Re: Any shot at Duke??---and a few other questions [#permalink] New post 30 Dec 2010, 13:45
Well written post which makes it easy to respond.

1) Schools will know that GTech is tough, and more than it being tough (I went to MIT undergrad, also pretty tough) but the grades overall are lower there than at MIT for instance. They should know that, but that said, GPA still won't help you (at best)....

2) Yes - I would say overall this will hurt your apps, and this is partly because it makes them harder to figure out what you really did and how impressive it was. Also the # yr of experience won't help. Not to discourage you from applying now, but why the rush to go now? Most people in industry have a bit more experience. Consultants can go with 2-3 years of exp but its harder for industry.

3) This will depend a lot on your essays and how strong your story is overall. Your GPA hurts, your experience hurts, but GMAT is good, Ugrad school good, and hopefully essays good

4) This will depend of course on other students and how you compare. How did you pick this as a back up, it is quite a jump from Duke down to Alabama.....I would say you can do better probably if you applied to a few.

Once you think a bit more, contact me if you have any more questions or want professional help as you put your applications together. You have enough time to get your apps together if you start now and are focused. Nice work on the GMAT and good luck!

Thanks

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Re: Any shot at Duke??---and a few other questions [#permalink] New post 30 Dec 2010, 14:21
Thank you for the response Scott.

I left off a couple details that may be a factor.

My race is White. From reading on here apparently being Indian is somewhat of a disadvantage. I would have not guessed that. I am assuming being White is basically the same deal as well though. But just thought I would clarify.

Also I have passed the Fundamentals of Engineering Exam if that matters at all.

The rush for me to go now is because I am not all that happy at my current job and have realized that I do not want to be a design engineer for the rest of my life. I am pretty sure that is what they have planned for me, as well as taking over my boss's job when he retires in a few years. If I have to sit behind a desk staring at computer programs and performing calculations/designs by hand all day long for too much longer I might go insane....

To go a little more in depth as to what my company does: we basically design/manufacture/install heavy industrial equipment. Basically anything that makes a paper mill, power plant, steel mill, factory, etc. run and operate. Our main focus is in the South East but we perform jobs all across the nation and also in Central/South America and even some in Europe.

The reason I picked Alabama as a back up was becuase of the following:

1) The absolute main reason I picked it is because I figured I have a good shot at scholarship which would be really nice. Obviously if I were accepted into Duke and went, that will be what? 80,000+ in student loans??

2) I was born and raised and as stated currently live in Birmingham which is only 45 minutes from Tuscaloosa. So I would still be close to my family and friends. Not a huge factor, but something to consider.

3) Finally I recently purchased a house in the last year. Obviously this can can be rented out and not really a big deal. But perhaps I would commute from Birmingham. I kind of doubt I would but again it is something to consider.

Again the main reason is for scholarship. If you think I would have a shot at a scholarship from a better school please feel free to share.

Thanks again!
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Re: Any shot at Duke??---and a few other questions [#permalink] New post 30 Dec 2010, 14:54
That makes sense, certainly those advantages are good if you just want an MBA and would rather not pay, and be close to home. Duke will be more than 80k, think more like 100K, though it depends what you consider, cost could rise once you take housing into account, etc.

To get a full ride at B school is pretty tough....I don't have other thoughts off the top of my head for a full ride for you, but certainly you could apply to other schools if you wanted to pay and didn't mind not being near home.

The key is to nail your essays, so reach out if you want my help. Have a good one.

-Scott
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--Insider tips and mock interview preparation
_________________

Scott Edinburgh
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Re: Any shot at Duke??---and a few other questions [#permalink] New post 07 Jan 2011, 16:07
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Re: Any shot at Duke??---and a few other questions   [#permalink] 07 Jan 2011, 16:07
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