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Calling all US Military Fall 2009 applicants!

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Calling all US Military Fall 2009 applicants! [#permalink] New post 31 Jan 2009, 16:11
I'm in the US military applying in round 2 and was wondering if I had any peers out there applying to top schools. I'm the only one in my cohort that I know of that is getting out of the military this year. The rough economic times has made many think twice about walking away from the financial stability the military offers.

So is there anybody else out there?
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Re: Calling all US Military Fall 2009 applicants! [#permalink] New post 31 Jan 2009, 17:22
I am prior military but I actually got out a little over a year ago. Can't really speak for the numbers of military folks applying for bschools this year, though I will say I met a few when I visited both Kellogg and Darden.

What schools are you applying to?
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Re: Calling all US Military Fall 2009 applicants! [#permalink] New post 31 Jan 2009, 17:29
I updated my profile to show my school applications. I'm applying to HBS/Wharton/MIT/Yale round 2. Admitted to Georgetown in round 1.

Every school I've applied to has a real strong military club and presence. Just hoping to connect with other applicants... also trying to keep myself busy as I wait for any potential interview invitations.
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Re: Calling all US Military Fall 2009 applicants! [#permalink] New post 31 Jan 2009, 20:46
Matterhorn,

I'm also applying to business schools for the fall of 2009. I'm currently in Iraq (2nd tour) on a transition team assignment. My buddy and I are the only ones I know of applying to b-school. He already received an EA admit from Duke so he's thrilled.

I've applied to Michigan and Michigan State R2; received an interview invite from Mich St so far. Planning to submit an app to Texas later this week and still on the fence on whether to submit a R3 app for Duke. My biggest weakness right now is the GMAT. The plan is, if I get waitlisted to my top choices, I will retake the GMAT this summer to improve the score and hopefully that will seal the deal. If not, I'll get cracking on apps again this fall.
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Re: Calling all US Military Fall 2009 applicants! [#permalink] New post 01 Feb 2009, 07:56
I plan on applying for Fall 2010. Originally, I planned on applying to H/S/W/Haas/UCLA, but it's getting harder and harder to decide whether I want to give up the steady paycheck (and an ever increasing one at that). Might just throw out a hail mary to H/S this fall. I'm really leaning towards staying in til 2012 because I'll be eligible for the 9/11 GI Bill then. Nice thing is H/S's age jihad doesn't apply to military applicants (or so I hear from the BW forums).
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Re: Calling all US Military Fall 2009 applicants! [#permalink] New post 01 Feb 2009, 10:48
Applying for Fall 2010 here - US Navy jet pilot on exchange duty in Europe. Naval Aviation brings a rather stout service commitment, so I will be 32 when I start B-school - the earliest I can leave the service. I plan on taking the GMAT late this Spring, then again in late fall when I return from flying in Afghanistan.

I am doing H/S/W/Columbia and Tuck in round 1 next year - I honestly do not know a single fellow Naval Aviator who is applying to top schools next year (oddly enough, I know three who are thinking about law school). As an unscientific hunch, I think more military will be staying put - things are winding down in Iraq and the economy is scaring a lot of people away from private life. I think it is a great time to be a military MBA applicant (especially now that Service Academy grads can get the 9/11 GI Bill).

Good luck to all of you with the apps this year, let us know how it goes!
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Re: Calling all US Military Fall 2009 applicants! [#permalink] New post 01 Feb 2009, 11:27
I'm in the Navy and getting out this summer. I know of a few others that are applying to some of the UE's and doing well (admits to Kellogg and another to Harvard). I guess the bonus for us is I don't think this downturn really affects military applicants. We're only being compared to each other, not the bankers, etc. Every school wants at least some military contingent, and I even think they're wanting to bulk up right now. If there's less of us getting out because of the economy, than it might actually be easier right now. Plus if the economy picks up in 2010 (god only knows), then all of us could be having the best run of luck ever.

I really hope the best for all of you! As for my part, I'm glad to be done. If you're like me, there's nothing more painful than waiting.
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Re: Calling all US Military Fall 2009 applicants! [#permalink] New post 01 Feb 2009, 16:11
So I was looking at the benefits for the post 9/11 GI bill and its a really sweet deal, especially the BAH part. Said that benefits begin August 1, 2009. I guess this caused two questions to come to mind. 1. Will the financial aid offices at schools automatically assume that you will be getting GI benefits and adjust whatever loan/scholarship package they offer. 2. How do you go about applying for these benefits, and will they be available for students starting in the fall?
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Re: Calling all US Military Fall 2009 applicants! [#permalink] New post 01 Feb 2009, 19:38
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domtri33 wrote:
So I was looking at the benefits for the post 9/11 GI bill and its a really sweet deal, especially the BAH part. Said that benefits begin August 1, 2009. I guess this caused two questions to come to mind. 1. Will the financial aid offices at schools automatically assume that you will be getting GI benefits and adjust whatever loan/scholarship package they offer. 2. How do you go about applying for these benefits, and will they be available for students starting in the fall?


1. The Montgomery GI Bill already exists, so the fact applicants may be using a GI Bill is nothing new. If you fill out the Federal Aid form (FAFSA) then there is already a block to check for whether you will be using the post 9/11 GI Bill or the Montgomery GI Bill, so I assume aid based on the Federal Expected Family Contribution (EFC) will be adjusted accordingly. So if you're talking about merit scholarships, the answer should be no. If you're talking about post-acceptance aid applications, all sources of income are considered, so yes.

2. While the new GI benefits have been passed into law, the VA has not yet implemented a method to apply or enroll. When the details are finally worked out, it should be announced here first: http://www.gibill.va.gov/. According to the law, the funds should be available for this Fall... but only if you have faith in the system.

The new GI Bill is definitely a great deal. There is also something called a "Yellow Ribbon program" where the VA will match any funds the school puts up to close the gap between the GI Bill and their tuition. The VA has not released the list of schools that will participate in this program, if any, and to what extent. Just keep checking that GI Bill web site for updates. That's all I can do anyway.
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Re: Calling all US Military Fall 2009 applicants! [#permalink] New post 09 Feb 2009, 16:07
Any military guys get a HBS invite today? My inbox laid devastatingly silent during the mass email invitation blast. Very disappointing, but life goes on. Wharton's invite came in a couple of hours later, making it a very bitter-sweet day overall.

Just curious what kind of military personnel are having success this year? I also wonder how much influence age has in this category. I will have 10 years military experience (mostly in Special Operations) and be 32 years old at time of matriculation.
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Last edited by matterhorn762 on 10 Feb 2009, 05:11, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Calling all US Military Fall 2009 applicants! [#permalink] New post 10 Feb 2009, 01:28
Sorry about HBS, but congrats on Wharton!

Everyone I know who is applying from the military has done really well. One of my fellow officers is around your age and just got accepted to Tuck and Fuqua. I think Wharton is very friendly to people your age. Given your experiences, you'll probably have more stories to share than the average applicant.

The interview should be a walk in the park. Let us know how it goes.
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Re: Calling all US Military Fall 2009 applicants! [#permalink] New post 10 Feb 2009, 07:22
Kellogg and Darden are both very military friendly. I think in general, age is less of an issue for us military folks (I will be 29 at matriculation).
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Re: Calling all US Military Fall 2009 applicants! [#permalink] New post 21 Mar 2009, 13:10
Not really a bump, but..........

How far out did you guys wait to ask for recommendation letters from military sources this year? I imagine you went with people who would write a "walk-on-water" recommendation as oppposed to going for big rank? Any other tips you have found helpful?
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Re: Calling all US Military Fall 2009 applicants! [#permalink] New post 21 Mar 2009, 13:25
You are definately better off going with quality of recommendation over rank, unless you served as a general office aide or something like that. I asked my brigade commander (I was on brigade staff) who could speak from a position of comparing me to my peers, and I asked one of my fellow captains that I deployed with twice that could personally speak to my total military career. On a side note, I wouldn't necessarily press your recommenders to write a total walk on water recommendation. I mean they need to speak well about you, but an adcom reading may be a bit skeptical if there is absolutely nothing that you can improve on.

If I remember correctly, I think I approached them around August. Gave them my resume and an outline of some of the themes that I was trying to highlight in the rest of the application. I checked in with them a couple times a month just to keep the ball rolling and answer any questions.

Hope this helps.
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Re: Calling all US Military Fall 2009 applicants! [#permalink] New post 21 Mar 2009, 13:47
RonMexico wrote:
Not really a bump, but..........

How far out did you guys wait to ask for recommendation letters from military sources this year? I imagine you went with people who would write a "walk-on-water" recommendation as oppposed to going for big rank? Any other tips you have found helpful?


I agree that rank is not as important as quality. The most important thing is that your recommender can first write well (not using military jargon), and second that he can quantify you... "I have rated 50 captains in my career and this guy is in the top 10%." If your rater hasn't rated as many people, or can't make that claim, it takes out some of the meat in my opinion.

I had my current O-5 and my previous O-5 Commanders write my recommendations. There is a lot of advice out there on how to maximize your recommendations, but in a military setting, it felt unprofessional. I really just did a fire-and-forget on the request (but that is just what I felt was right in my command). I also gave them a list of useful notes as to what business schools look for in an applicant, and later on I followed up on some of the themes I was writing in my essays (once I figured that out). Recommend you give them at least 4-5 weeks before the deadline, and follow up as needed. Nearly all my recommendations were turned in on the deadline day and I usually had to write uncomfortable reminder notes 24-48 hours out. One of them was turned in at 11pm when it was due at midnight.

Another thing to consider is that if you can get one military and one non-military letter then that would most likely be better (especially for Harvard which asks for 3). If you are involved in any outside military organizations or professional clubs try to get one there. Most of us have a hard time pulling that off, but I think showing well roundedness is a big advantage here. I'm guessing one military recommendation looks just like every other to a AdCom, and therefore two are redundant, and a letter from a non-profit or something would really highlight your recs.

Also, those in private business often buy their recommenders a thank you gift. That also seemed inappropriate in a military setting.
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Re: Calling all US Military Fall 2009 applicants! [#permalink] New post 22 Mar 2009, 10:36
matterhorn762 wrote:
RonMexico wrote:
Not really a bump, but..........

How far out did you guys wait to ask for recommendation letters from military sources this year? I imagine you went with people who would write a "walk-on-water" recommendation as oppposed to going for big rank? Any other tips you have found helpful?


I agree that rank is not as important as quality. The most important thing is that your recommender can first write well (not using military jargon), and second that he can quantify you... "I have rated 50 captains in my career and this guy is in the top 10%." If your rater hasn't rated as many people, or can't make that claim, it takes out some of the meat in my opinion.

I had my current O-5 and my previous O-5 Commanders write my recommendations. There is a lot of advice out there on how to maximize your recommendations, but in a military setting, it felt unprofessional. I really just did a fire-and-forget on the request (but that is just what I felt was right in my command). I also gave them a list of useful notes as to what business schools look for in an applicant, and later on I followed up on some of the themes I was writing in my essays (once I figured that out). Recommend you give them at least 4-5 weeks before the deadline, and follow up as needed. Nearly all my recommendations were turned in on the deadline day and I usually had to write uncomfortable reminder notes 24-48 hours out. One of them was turned in at 11pm when it was due at midnight.

Another thing to consider is that if you can get one military and one non-military letter then that would most likely be better (especially for Harvard which asks for 3). If you are involved in any outside military organizations or professional clubs try to get one there. Most of us have a hard time pulling that off, but I think showing well roundedness is a big advantage here. I'm guessing one military recommendation looks just like every other to a AdCom, and therefore two are redundant, and a letter from a non-profit or something would really highlight your recs.

Also, those in private business often buy their recommenders a thank you gift. That also seemed inappropriate in a military setting.


I had my deployed Squadron Commander (O-5) write my LOR as well as a fellow O-3 write the other one. The O-3, though, was actually one of my instructor pilots from back in the day, so he could give both a peer and supervisor flavor to his rec. All said, I would say I am proof that the rank of your respective recommenders is not at all an important data-point in your application. My profile is in the profile page if you're curious as to who/what military are getting in this year.

Cheers :P
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Re: Calling all US Military Fall 2009 applicants! [#permalink] New post 05 Aug 2009, 20:54
I'm revisiting this older thread to see if any of the previous posters might still be around to share advice and/or success stories. If there's enough interest from previous and current applicants, maybe we can start a new Fall 2010 applicants thread. Best of luck to those former military personnel starting school!
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Re: Calling all US Military Fall 2009 applicants! [#permalink] New post 05 Aug 2009, 21:12
gregarious wrote:
I'm revisiting this older thread to see if any of the previous posters might still be around to share advice and/or success stories. If there's enough interest from previous and current applicants, maybe we can start a new Fall 2010 applicants thread. Best of luck to those former military personnel starting school!



Navy guy here. Just returned from deployment and I'm neck-deep in GMAT preparation and school research before we turn around and deploy again next year. I would definitely be interested in following a military-specific app thread.
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Re: Calling all US Military Fall 2009 applicants! [#permalink] New post 06 Aug 2009, 19:04
gtg450g wrote:
Navy guy here. Just returned from deployment and I'm neck-deep in GMAT preparation and school research before we turn around and deploy again next year. I would definitely be interested in following a military-specific app thread.


Great to have you onboard, I think that you'll find most of the people on the forums here to be very helpful. Since there probably won't be too much activity on this thread (I think most of the posters have moved on), I'll start a new on in a few days for this application season. Good luck with studying and school research!
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Re: Calling all US Military Fall 2009 applicants! [#permalink] New post 27 Aug 2009, 09:08
gregarious wrote:
I'm revisiting this older thread to see if any of the previous posters might still be around to share advice and/or success stories. If there's enough interest from previous and current applicants, maybe we can start a new Fall 2010 applicants thread. Best of luck to those former military personnel starting school!


still here and kicking. Was two for two with applications last year at Darden and Kellogg. Will be starting Kellogg in a couple days. Would be happy to help in anyway.
Re: Calling all US Military Fall 2009 applicants!   [#permalink] 27 Aug 2009, 09:08
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