Thanks for your posts. I read both and will respond inline here.
I would like to pursue a MBA but my background seems to be totally out of track considered for most MBA aspirants. I am 24 years old. I did my BA in Architecutre, Masters in City Planning. And I am now purusing a PhD in City Planning with a concentration in Real Estate/Urban Development.
I would like to go back to my home country in Asia and set up a research and civic institute. I see research as the foundation for my future pursuit. Instead of doing academic research which end up only on the library self, I want to take a humanistic approach to my research and parlay my own findings into the actions by myself. Mere being a research doesn't satisfy my dream of being an active changer in the society. In order to that, I would like to gain a whole set of management skills and biz skills from a MBA Program. // Another thing is if I get into top 5, I might be the first one from my home country. My country is pretty isolated and stagnant, and I have never heard of anyone attending one of those top schools.
1. Could you please give me any suggestions on how to position myself and what should I do to prepare to get into top MBA programs?
I was skeptically thinking "degree chaser" until I actually read why you want all these degrees. Then I thought, "hmm...plausible." However "plausible" won't necessarily get you accepted.
The best preparation would be relevant work experience. If you were to achieve your dream of starting an institute in your home country, what work experience would prepare you to achieve your dream? Consulting? Working in a city planning department? Working for an NGO?
Some form of work experience tied to your long-term goal would help you get into an MBA program.
2. Is there any points I should focus on so that I don't appear as a degree collector?
Leadership in on-campus activities. At some point getting a job preparatory to your long-term goal.
3. How should I integrate the fact that I might be the first ever MBA student at top 5 schools into my profile?
Many schools ask for a background essay, that would be a great place to say it. Others give you an optional. It really depends on the application and the questions, but you should be able to work it in. However, first confirm. We have had clients from a lot of places in Asia that you wouldn't think send people to US MBA schools.
4. I think I would take GRE again to apply to schools. What kind of GRE score should I shoot for?
I don't mean to be flippant, but you should shoot for the highest score possible and then deal with the results.
Your help would be appreciated!
Accepted ~ The Premier Admissions Consultancy
Co-Author of: MBA Admission for Smarties: The No-Nonsense Guide to Acceptance at Top Business Schools
Follow Accepted on Twitter
Friend Accepted on Facebook
Subscribe to Accepted's Blog