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# Ask Aringo - if your GMAT is (or might be) below 720

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Re: Ask Aringo - if your GMAT is (or might be) below 720 [#permalink]  01 May 2011, 09:03
Hello Gil. Your story is quite impressive -- thanks a lot for all the insight.

I've asked about my backround before as well, and was wondering if I might throw my profile into this forum too. Link here:

profile-evaluation-another-opinion-112990.html

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Re: Ask Aringo - if your GMAT is (or might be) below 720 [#permalink]  01 May 2011, 14:27
Nationality - Indian , male , 24 years old

Education
Gmat-720
CFA-level 2 candidate
BE ( electronics ) -74% , unknown engineering college

Work experience
- Working with Caritas India ( non profit ) as a project coordinator and have also been a consultant on five different income generation projects so far( total work ex so far 1.5 years) . My job is to do a thorough market analysis , and come up with strategies to create small scale units which employ people from the backward sections of the society. So, that these people can have a sustained source of income.
-Interesting aspect of this job is that I get to deal with politicians too .

Entrepreneurship experience:---6 months
- I have always had a passion to teach . My family has been running a couple of private schools for the last 37 years in the city i live in . I started a private sponsorship program along with a few eminent names in the field of education in my city , where we fund the primary education for children who cannot afford to go to private schools . It is a whole business model( 75% of the earnings are used to sponsor these kids , and rest of it is used for day to day operations ). It would take me a whole page to explain how this thing works , but the bottomline is this model is first of it's kind and is doing quite well . We have been able to sponsor 12 children so far and have raised more than 25,000$in 6 months time. ( indian equivalent is quite high , apparantly you only need 1500-2000$ to sponsor a child's education in india for good 10-12 years )

-won't bore you with a laundry list but i have been involved with quite a few things ( state level singer , sportsmen , and several other entrepreneurship experience ..etc !

My target schools are - UCLA, YALE ( don't know if it's a realistic target !) will be applying for 2013 intake

Post MBA:: HONESTLY i want to work as an advisor to the Government of India and head my own social ventures.
Why MBA ? -A good B-school's name gives you instant recognition amongst the masses and makes your job easier !
( and dismisses the perennial question - "what are you doing with your life?"

So my questions to you are :- You can pretty much see tht i am a jack of all traits sortff a guy i am all over the place !!

1) How do i categorize my work experience?
2) The path i am heading on is non traditional and I would like to know do people get into good MBA programs taking on such paths?
3) General feedbacks on my profile would be greatly appreciated too
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Re: Ask Aringo - if your GMAT is (or might be) below 720 [#permalink]  02 May 2011, 00:44
GilLevi wrote:
Hi Gil,

Thanks for taking out time and reading my profile It’s a relatively longer one

On the basis of the information above, and under the assumptions of strong essays and recommendations, reasonable B.Com. GPA (not with distinction) and a GMAT score of 680, our experience shows that you will be a competitive candidate at IMD and LBS and competitive-to-stretch at INSEAD. You may also want to consider Cornell's 12-month program (competitive), Kellogg's 12-month program (stretch), and the Cambridge and Oxford programs (competitive to strong in both, closer to competitive).

According to our experience, your admission chances are likely to be a bit higher if:
- You have an arrangement with the Muscat company (your current employer) of being appointed to a senior position there after graduation.
- You connect your career plan more closely with the oil & gas business (i.e. with your prior, significant and relatively unique experience).

Do you think my chances would improve significantly at schools like LBS/Insead/IMD if I improve my GMAT by 60 -70 points?
Yes.
How much of my international experience of working in 24 -28 countries coupled with my leadership experience would be of interest to INSEAD and how much will they appreciate it while deciding my candidature,.
It will be of significant importance. Your experience (and demonstrated leadership and "go-getter" skills) are relatively unique and, in my opinion, impressive, especially considering your age.

Thanks a lot Gil for helping me .
Sudhir

You're welcome. Good luck Sudhir!

Gil Levi
Aringo.com

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Thanks for your feedback. Infact I have cleared my Chartered Accountancy and CMA both in First attempt( 0.1% 70,000 odd students) and have distinction in my Bcom as well. I'm currently reporting to the CFO and working on the IPO of the company( First Oil services company in Middle east to go to public).
Do you think I have better chances to get into LBS over Insead? Considering my strong Finance + Oil& gas market experience. I have spoken to you colleague Manish Agarwal and he was very positive on my chances at Insead@ 680 GMAT. Must say , talking with him was a pleasure. A real helpful guy. I promise I wud come back to you guys post GMAT for taking other serivces.

Thanks for helping the students
Sudhir
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Re: Ask Aringo - if your GMAT is (or might be) below 720 [#permalink]  08 May 2011, 22:47
Hi, I was wondering if schools look at when you took the GMAT. I took the GMAT in mid-2007 and scored a 700 (92%) and am planning to apply to schools in the fall. Since I took the exam the average scores at most schools has gone up 10-20 points - today a 92% is in the 710-720 range. How do schools take this into account, if at all?

According to our experience, most admission committee members will not take this into account for the simple reason that it's a bit complicated to notice, digest and remember while they have a lot of other stuff (and other applications) to handle.
However, if you bring this up and explain it clearly in the optional essay (or as a separate note, where applicable) then, most likely, this fact will be noticed and understood and will have a small positive effect on your candidacy.
Good luck!

Gil Levi
Aringo.com
Top MBA with GMAT below 710

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Re: Ask Aringo - if your GMAT is (or might be) below 720 [#permalink]  08 May 2011, 23:01
Nationality - Indian , male , 24 years old

Education
Gmat-720
CFA-level 2 candidate
BE ( electronics ) -74% , unknown engineering college

Work experience
- Working with Caritas India ( non profit ) as a project coordinator and have also been a consultant on five different income generation projects so far( total work ex so far 1.5 years) . My job is to do a thorough market analysis , and come up with strategies to create small scale units which employ people from the backward sections of the society. So, that these people can have a sustained source of income.
-Interesting aspect of this job is that I get to deal with politicians too .

Entrepreneurship experience:---6 months
- I have always had a passion to teach . My family has been running a couple of private schools for the last 37 years in the city i live in . I started a private sponsorship program along with a few eminent names in the field of education in my city , where we fund the primary education for children who cannot afford to go to private schools . It is a whole business model( 75% of the earnings are used to sponsor these kids , and rest of it is used for day to day operations ). It would take me a whole page to explain how this thing works , but the bottomline is this model is first of it's kind and is doing quite well . We have been able to sponsor 12 children so far and have raised more than 25,000$in 6 months time. ( indian equivalent is quite high , apparantly you only need 1500-2000$ to sponsor a child's education in india for good 10-12 years )

-won't bore you with a laundry list but i have been involved with quite a few things ( state level singer , sportsmen , and several other entrepreneurship experience ..etc !

My target schools are - UCLA, YALE ( don't know if it's a realistic target !) will be applying for 2013 intake

Post MBA:: HONESTLY i want to work as an advisor to the Government of India and head my own social ventures.
Why MBA ? -A good B-school's name gives you instant recognition amongst the masses and makes your job easier !
( and dismisses the perennial question - "what are you doing with your life?"

So my questions to you are :- You can pretty much see tht i am a jack of all traits sortff a guy i am all over the place !!

1) How do i categorize my work experience?
2) The path i am heading on is non traditional and I would like to know do people get into good MBA programs taking on such paths?
3) General feedbacks on my profile would be greatly appreciated too

From what you describe it sounds to me like your best bet may be to either run with the non-profit angle or with the entrepreneurial angle (in which case you'd want to focus on the entrepreneurial aspects of your Caritas work and on entrepreneurial stuff you did with your family business even before you started the sponsorship program). My first impression is that the non-profit focus will be easier to convey and present.
As to the non-traditional background and career plan - absolutely. The top programs look to diversify the class. Therefore, often people with unusual background have an easier time getting in.
In terms of your career plan, though, you may want to focus on just one of the two directions you mentioned. Possibly the social ventures one would work better, because it connects well with your background and with the non-profit focus that I mentioned above.
Hope this helps.
Good luck!

Gil Levi
Aringo.com
Top MBA with GMAT below 710

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Re: Ask Aringo - if your GMAT is (or might be) below 720 [#permalink]  08 May 2011, 23:09
Thanks for your feedback. Infact I have cleared my Chartered Accountancy and CMA both in First attempt( 0.1% 70,000 odd students) and have distinction in my Bcom as well. I'm currently reporting to the CFO and working on the IPO of the company( First Oil services company in Middle east to go to public).
Do you think I have better chances to get into LBS over Insead? Considering my strong Finance + Oil& gas market experience.

Yes, I think you have an even better chance at LBS because of your strong financial background (LBS is more finance-oriented than INSEAD) and because LBS is a bit more flexible on the GMAT side.

I have spoken to you colleague Manish Agarwal and he was very positive on my chances at Insead@ 680 GMAT. Must say , talking with him was a pleasure. A real helpful guy. Happy to hear that. Thanks! I promise I wud come back to you guys post GMAT for taking other serivces.

Thanks for helping the students
Sudhir

Good luck Sudhir! Crossing fingers.

Gil Levi
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Re: Ask Aringo - if your GMAT is (or might be) below 720 [#permalink]  12 May 2011, 07:58
Hi,

I have been on gmatclub for a long time and thanks to this wonderful website for giving aspirants all the information.

I want a look at my profile and an opinion on schools I can apply to.

Class 10- 87%
Class 12- 72%
10th and 12th from CBSE, New Delhi, India
Economics (Honours)- 59.9%.... A three year degree course from India
University of Delhi, 2007
1 year with Ernst and Young
Joined as Audit Associate, promoted to Advanced Audit Associate within six months
6 Months as a fashion merchandiser
2 years with State Bank of India as Probationary Officer (Assistant Manager), have worked in Dehradun, Bazpur, currently posted in Agra

GMAT:- 670, QA 46, VA 36, April 2011

Looking for good MBA schools, Europe or Americas, Please suggest where all can I apply... is my GMAT competitive?

Thanks
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Re: Ask Aringo - if your GMAT is (or might be) below 720 [#permalink]  14 May 2011, 11:21
Gil
Could not find them on your site.

thanks
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Re: Ask Aringo - if your GMAT is (or might be) below 720 [#permalink]  14 May 2011, 22:30
Hi,

I have been on gmatclub for a long time and thanks to this wonderful website for giving aspirants all the information.Thanks! Happy to hear.

I want a look at my profile and an opinion on schools I can apply to.

Class 10- 87%
Class 12- 72%
10th and 12th from CBSE, New Delhi, India
Economics (Honours)- 59.9%.... A three year degree course from India
University of Delhi, 2007
1 year with Ernst and Young
Joined as Audit Associate, promoted to Advanced Audit Associate within six months
6 Months as a fashion merchandiser
2 years with State Bank of India as Probationary Officer (Assistant Manager), have worked in Dehradun, Bazpur, currently posted in Agra

GMAT:- 670, QA 46, VA 36, April 2011

Looking for good MBA schools, Europe or Americas, Please suggest where all can I apply... is my GMAT competitive?

Thanks

On the basis of the information above, and under the assumption of strong essays and recommendations, our experience shows that you will be a competitive candidate at schools such as Simon, IE and ESADE, competitive to stretch (closer to competitive) at UNC, IESE, Emory and USC, competitive to stretch at Cornell, competitive to stretch (closer to stretch) at Tepper and competitive to strong (closer to strong) at Babson and RSM.

Good luck!

Gil Levi
Aringo.com

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Re: Ask Aringo - if your GMAT is (or might be) below 720 [#permalink]  14 May 2011, 22:36
Gil
Could not find them on your site.

thanks

Apologies... we'll make the pricing info more easily noticable.

and: http://www.aringo.com/Service1.htm

Good luck with your application process.

Gil

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Re: Ask Aringo - if your GMAT is (or might be) below 720 [#permalink]  17 May 2011, 08:16
Hi Gil,

I have a question that I am hoping you will be able to answer. I have read MBA admissions books and browsed gmat prep/MBA admissions sites with different admissions consultants offering tips. The general consensus seems to be that the GMAT operates on a 'threshold' principle. You don't have enough then you are almost out in most cases (barring exceptions). Of course, the question remains - how much is enough? Generally a 700 for most top schools. To get in with a lower gmat you need to pull something else out of the bag, something special.

So my question is: with a high emphasis on helping low gmat applicants get into top programs is Aringo running against popular perception that you first need to check the box against getting a 700 score and then worry about writing apps? Have your low (I guess scores in the 600s) gmat scorers gotten in because they have something exceptional (military, sport etc.) that has been presented appropriately in the apps or has it been because they were able to construct the app in such a way as to get in without necessarily having something truly exceptional? By truly exceptional I mean some extracurricular prowess that is hard to overlook.

Many Thanks.
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Re: Ask Aringo - if your GMAT is (or might be) below 720 [#permalink]  27 May 2011, 01:34
Hi Gil,

I have a question that I am hoping you will be able to answer. I have read MBA admissions books and browsed gmat prep/MBA admissions sites with different admissions consultants offering tips. The general consensus seems to be that the GMAT operates on a 'threshold' principle. You don't have enough then you are almost out in most cases (barring exceptions). Of course, the question remains - how much is enough? Generally a 700 for most top schools. To get in with a lower gmat you need to pull something else out of the bag, something special.

So my question is: with a high emphasis on helping low gmat applicants get into top programs is Aringo running against popular perception that you first need to check the box against getting a 700 score and then worry about writing apps?
Yes we do. Based on our experience, you can get into the top-10 schools with a GMAT score below 700, and you don't need to be the son of Obama, or a Mark Zuckerberg, to make this happen.
Have your low (I guess scores in the 600s) gmat scorers gotten in because they have something exceptional (military, sport etc.) that has been presented appropriately in the apps or has it been because they were able to construct the app in such a way as to get in without necessarily having something truly exceptional? By truly exceptional I mean some extracurricular prowess that is hard to overlook.

It rarely happened that one of our candidates gets into a top school because of one thing. it was often the cumulative picture. It's a puzzle, and the GMAT is one piece of it. The GPA, the work experience, the strategy/career plan, the recommendations, the essays - are all pieces in this puzzle. Yes, if one piece is weak, then the others have to be stronger. If two pieces are weak, then the others have to be even stronger. According to our experience, it is very rare that only one piece is so strong that all the others don't matter (and vice versa). In addition, when one piece is weak (say that GMAT) there are ways to counter-balance this piece with external or other data (e.g. did you take and IQ test?). At the end of the day, it's the whole picture that matters. And there are many pieces to play with.

Many Thanks.
Hope this makes sense... good luck!

Gil Levi
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Re: Ask Aringo - if your GMAT is (or might be) below 720 [#permalink]  03 Jun 2011, 00:44
Hi Gil,
How should I direct my career/studies in order to boost my admission chances?
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Re: Ask Aringo - if your GMAT is (or might be) below 720 [#permalink]  04 Jun 2011, 21:45

I assume you are applying in several years... What usually helps in respect to your career plan at this stage is to think about a “theme” that is quite closely connected to what you have done thus far, and to continue following this “theme” in your career (as well as at school and in community work) from now on. This theme can be in the form of focus on a specific industry (for example, information security) or professional field (for example, consumer marketing).
Such “theme” is one of several factors that will help boost your candidacy, and you should weigh the various factors against each other when making decisions. For example, if on the one hand you can secure a position that is related to the abovementioned “theme” but where you cannot display leadership (or alternately, you don’t expect to be promoted), while another position will allow you to manage 10 people (or, for example, you expect to be promoted twice within two years), the second alternative is probably stronger.
In addition to wise career choices, it would be good to focus your attention on 2-3 potential recommenders (if there is someone who is very senior or famous and you can perform some work for them it will be excellent) and build strong relationships with them, consider engaging in public/social/volunteer/political activities (if it comes in the context of leadership, or being elected to a position, or entrepreneurship, it will be especially beneficial), build relationships with students and alumni of the programs you are interested in, look into the possibility of establishing something new and successful, at this time or later on (such as an organization, department, etc.), accumulate as many distinctions as possible at school/work/other activities, learn about the schools, visit campuses if you get the chance, and choose 2-3 schools to focus on.
Also see this link for more on the topic: http://aringo.com/PreparationProcess.htm

Good luck!

Gil Levi
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Re: Ask Aringo - if your GMAT is (or might be) below 720 [#permalink]  05 Jun 2011, 13:56
Hello Gil,

Thanks for your effort with providing such valuable advice ; its greatly appreciated!

Mentioned below are details which may give you an insight into my application:

From: India, Age- Will be 29 this July

GPA: 3.28 Babson College, Massachusetts with a Finance major, Bachelors of Science, Business Management Degree in 2006
Started college with a 2.6 GPA freshman year & final semester was 3.9 GPA. Junior/Senior Year GPA was 3.5+and Finance Major GPA was about 3.7

Work Experience: (4 years in all PLUS entrepreneurial projects)
3 years in Financial Services at a small boutique firm in Boston - Financial Analyst, Investments (2006-2007 then 2008-2010)
1 year in Family Business - Manufacturing (India) from 2007-2008 ; then went back to Boston from 2008-2010
Returned to India in 2010 October as my father was diagnosed with cancer so i had to leave and return immediately.

Non Profit:
Im working on a non profit organization at this point but do not have it legally established yet - 125 embroiders/weavers have joined and my goal is to educate them and really market their services to fashion designers & consumers directly - also making sure they are not exploited in any way what so ever. My goal is to grow this to a membership of about 500 people over the next few months. Just thought of mentioning this on my application, for some reason i hadnt though of this earlier .. you think its a good idea?

Entrepreneurship Experience:
Started a Fashion Accessories business while working , designed a collection of scarves and sold to e-commerce websites and boutiques in USA (2007 onwards while in India)
Also started another fashion jewelry brand a month ago (May 2011 ) and selling in the USA again- again handled everything from designing right up to dealing with buyers

GMAT: 700

Passion, Personal Story And Career goals:

Major passion is Textile Design (woven textiles- I also learned to weave myself over these years) of the type achieved during the highest period of the Renaissance in Europe, in Turkey & Iran. Long term goal is to setup a luxury lifestyle brand that has the ability to revitalize those extravagant hand woven textiles by making the designs more contemporary and suitable for Haute Couture and the finest Home Decor. Setting up such a company would be patronizing the work of villages full of weavers and artists in India who have left the trade for other lucrative professions and/or are dying in poverty due to no demand of their work. I feel an obligation to these artisans as patronage of the arts in India stopped around 1950 when the british raj was abolished. I belong to an Indian Royal Family (not anymore though, my grand father was the last ruler---various Family members now are into National level politics- senator etc.) and would like to revitalize this industry but with an approach of running a luxury brand which is why i want to pursue a good MBA.

Keeping my long term goals in mind, I would like to work in the Luxury Industry immediately following the MBA program, on the management side which would eventually prepare me for my longer term goal !

Should i elaborate on family background and this story in my application essays? I dont know where i could stand a chance though im very keen on Columbia (would early action help??) , NYU, Dartmouth (Early action???) , Yale, UVA Darden and the more elite ones-where do you think i should apply... Id like Kellogg/Chicago and Wharton too but there's no change il get in there-

Your help is much appreciated-- Thank You!
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Re: Ask Aringo - if your GMAT is (or might be) below 720 [#permalink]  08 Jun 2011, 08:52
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Re: Ask Aringo - if your GMAT is (or might be) below 720 [#permalink]  11 Jun 2011, 07:10
Hope to hear from you, Gil !!
Thank You
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Re: Ask Aringo - if your GMAT is (or might be) below 720 [#permalink]  11 Jun 2011, 18:41
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Last edited by humphy on 26 Jan 2012, 22:45, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Ask Aringo - if your GMAT is (or might be) below 720 [#permalink]  11 Jun 2011, 22:46
Hello Gil,

Thanks for your effort with providing such valuable advice ; its greatly appreciated!

Mentioned below are details which may give you an insight into my application:

From: India, Age- Will be 29 this July

GPA: 3.28 Babson College, Massachusetts with a Finance major, Bachelors of Science, Business Management Degree in 2006
Started college with a 2.6 GPA freshman year & final semester was 3.9 GPA. Junior/Senior Year GPA was 3.5+and Finance Major GPA was about 3.7

Work Experience: (4 years in all PLUS entrepreneurial projects)
3 years in Financial Services at a small boutique firm in Boston - Financial Analyst, Investments (2006-2007 then 2008-2010)
1 year in Family Business - Manufacturing (India) from 2007-2008 ; then went back to Boston from 2008-2010
Returned to India in 2010 October as my father was diagnosed with cancer so i had to leave and return immediately.

Non Profit:
Im working on a non profit organization at this point but do not have it legally established yet - 125 embroiders/weavers have joined and my goal is to educate them and really market their services to fashion designers & consumers directly - also making sure they are not exploited in any way what so ever. My goal is to grow this to a membership of about 500 people over the next few months. Just thought of mentioning this on my application, for some reason i hadnt though of this earlier .. you think its a good idea?
Absolutely! Makes sense to mention this non-profit initiative because: 1. You already have some traction to show. 2. The fact you haven't been working over the past half a year or so (if I get this correctly) is likely to be a concern. This initiative is likely to mitigate this concern a bit.

Entrepreneurship Experience:
Started a Fashion Accessories business while working , designed a collection of scarves and sold to e-commerce websites and boutiques in USA (2007 onwards while in India)
Also started another fashion jewelry brand a month ago (May 2011 ) and selling in the USA again- again handled everything from designing right up to dealing with buyers

GMAT: 700

Passion, Personal Story And Career goals:

Major passion is Textile Design (woven textiles- I also learned to weave myself over these years) of the type achieved during the highest period of the Renaissance in Europe, in Turkey & Iran. Long term goal is to setup a luxury lifestyle brand that has the ability to revitalize those extravagant hand woven textiles by making the designs more contemporary and suitable for Haute Couture and the finest Home Decor. Setting up such a company would be patronizing the work of villages full of weavers and artists in India who have left the trade for other lucrative professions and/or are dying in poverty due to no demand of their work. I feel an obligation to these artisans as patronage of the arts in India stopped around 1950 when the british raj was abolished. I belong to an Indian Royal Family You mention this as a "by the way" - but, based on our experience, I think it is important that this fact be very noticeable in your application - find a way to bring it, even a few times, in the context of some of the essays/recommendations/resume so that in a way that seems natural, not forced. (not anymore though, my grand father was the last ruler---various Family members now are into National level politics- senator etc.) and would like to revitalize this industry but with an approach of running a luxury brand which is why i want to pursue a good MBA.

Keeping my long term goals in mind, I would like to work in the Luxury Industry immediately following the MBA program, on the management side which would eventually prepare me for my longer term goal !

Should i elaborate on family background and this story in my application essays? Yes, see above. Is there a way to connect this focus with your investment job? To re-focus the presentation of your investment work in a way that emphasizes any investments you did related to the luxury/textile industry? I dont know where i could stand a chance though im very keen on Columbia (would early action help??)Yes, it is likely to help a bit. , NYU, Dartmouth (Early action???) Same here , Yale, UVA Darden and the more elite ones-where do you think i should apply... Id like Kellogg/Chicago and Wharton too but there's no change il get in there-

Your help is much appreciated-- Thank You!

On the basis of the information above, and under the assumption of strong essays and recommendations, our experience shows that you will be a competitive-to-stretch (closer to competitive) candidate at Darden, competitive-to-stretch at Tuck, NYU and Yale (I put Yale here under the assumption that your non-profit initiative will gain a bit more traction by the time you apply), and stretch at Columbia, Kellogg, Chicago and Wharton.

Take a look at application tips and scholarship info for some of these schools here:
http://www.aringo.com/schools.htm

Hope this helps. Good luck!

Gil Levi
Aringo.com

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Re: Ask Aringo - if your GMAT is (or might be) below 720 [#permalink]  12 Jun 2011, 11:42
I am going to assume that you don't currently manage people.

The biotech/pharma focus is impressive and likely to be quite helpful admission-wise. Possibly skip the second sentence, and narrow the industry down even further.

On the basis of the information above, and under the assumption of strong essays and recommendations, our experience shows that you will be a competitive-to-strong candidate at USC (closer to competitive), competitive at UCLA, competitive-to-stretch at Haas, and stretch at Stanford, Harvard, Sloan, Kellogg and Booth. Stretch but not impossible - see also http://www.aringo.com/Results_GMAT.htm

If you believe you can improve your GMAT score (any improvement will get you from the 6's to the 7's - often a significant psychological difference) then yes, I'd go for it, even at the price of delaying submission of one application from the first to the second round (but preferably not at the price of reducing the quality of the applications that you submit in R1).

Good luck!

Re: Ask Aringo - if your GMAT is (or might be) below 720   [#permalink] 12 Jun 2011, 11:42

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