Interesting timing. Please note that my last post was on last October and your response was 8 months later. Well much has changed for me since then. I'll be beginning my MBA this fall after having received a series of acceptances. My undergraduate GPA was a 3.1 with a Biology major and I took the GMAT twice. The first time was the score I was referring to last October, which was a 550 (atrocious!). I was feeling sick that day. Not a good idea to take a GMAT when you can't stop sneezing by the way. The people at Prometric weren't too happy with me. I took the GMAT again after that posting and got a 680, which was a more acceptable score for me. I applied to six schools in the following order of preference:
6.) Bentley (safety school)
So after months of toiling over my applications, I got into Kellogg, Babson, B.U., B.C., and I'm sure I would have gotten into Bentley but I got my Kellogg acceptance before turning in that application...so I just saved myself the 70 bucks and didn't turn it in. In accord with my order of preferences, I am in the process of giving my deposit to Kellogg. However, I would urge you to consider that my selection criteria is based upon my personal priorities. This might not be the same for you. Babson has always been very high on my list because the level of teaching and the quality of the education at that school is basically Ivy League. The professors I encountered while making my decision were: Dr. Anirudh Dhebar and Dr. Mark Rice. I could sense their approach to teaching, as well as their entrepreneurially oriented methodology. I have to say that I was extremely impressed and for me, its really a toss-up between Kellogg and Babson. I guess the U.S. News rankings made this decision for me. As quoted in the Wall St. Journal, Babson truly is a hidden gem! HBS has a great network but in a class of 900 people and only 4 sections, I didn't feel that I would get the face to face time with the professors necessary to justify the expanded network. Besides, they didn't accept me. Boo Hoo! B.U. and B.C.'s Carroll school of Management I found to be quite "blah blah". If finance is what you want to study, CSOM is probably a good program but I want to learn about marketing, which is something that CSOM doesn't have many resources for. I'm sure they have a good program but the people there didn't seem very enthusiastic or energetic to me. Maybe I just showed up on a bad day though...Marketing is also the reason I Kellogg was my top choice (I wanted to study under Phillip Kotler). And I hope to do so starting in August!
So I hope this helps and good luck in making your decision. If I can offer a couple of pieces of advice, I would say that it is very important to look in the mirror and ask yourself what it is that you want to learn about in business before you start prioritizing your schools. If its finance, CSOM probably is a very good school for though....but only you can answer that. Second, do your lower priority applications first! This is a mistake I made. The thing is that if you do the applications to the schools you care less about first, your writing, sense of self, and ability to elaborate on your goals improves by the time to get to the high priority schools. Generally, these tend to be a little more analytical applications also. So manage your time wisely!