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Joined: 30 Nov 2009
Posts: 4639
Location: Chicago, IL
Schools: Brown University, Harvard Business School
Followers: 60

Kudos [?]: 777 [0], given: 42

No Extra-Curriculars...No Problem! [#permalink]

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New post 17 May 2011, 06:46
Expert's post
Hey gang. Jon Frank here, HBS MBA class of 2005, and your friendly neighborhood MBA consultant at your service.

Soooo I just got off the phone with a friend of ours from China. As we discussed his profiles, we got to the part of the conversation where I reminded him (as we do all our first-time clients) that "Schools accept people, not profiles." What does this mean? Well, in this case, it meant that homeboy needed to do some COMMUNITY SERVICE. He needed to do something, well, beyond just work.

So that got me to thinking--if you guys dont have any REAL community background to speak of, no real extra-curriculars, how can we work around this in the essays?

In fact, it's easy. I'll tell ya how. Here are two ways to make it seem like youve been doing extra-curriculars...even if you havent been.

1) Look back into your past. Are there any organizations that you used to be involved with? Did you volunteer with Habitat for Humanity (even if only once) while at college? Well...that is your ticket. Now, go BACK to Habitat, and volunteer there again. And voila! You can now say that youve been "volunteering with Habitat on and off" for the past five or six or so years.

2) What if the last thing you did community-wise was at college, but...there is no way to call that organization again? Like for example, in college you ran a Toy Drive once, during Christmas. Well, again, use the same idea. Volunteer for something now (you still have a few months) that is SIMILAR to the work that you did in college. Now, you will have a coherent story in your apps. "For the past 5-6 years, I have been helping young children enjoy Christmas with their families," etc. Keep your activity in the same general vicinity, and it wont seem random (or that youre blatantly just trying to get into bschool) when you sign up for something to do in the coming 5-6 months.

Hope this helps gang, AND GOOD LUCK!

Jon Frank
Founder, Admissionado

Admissionado | Packages | School Guides | Team

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