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Columbia: Calling all applicants - Class of 2016

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Re: Columbia: Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 06 Aug 2013, 06:13
mgh234 wrote:
I heard Columbia cares a lot about GPA, I'm a 26 year old white male and have a 3.4 from undergrad at NYU Stern, and 750 GMAT (49q/44v). 4 years work experience doing project management work at BB IB's. Is my below average GPA going to be problematic if I apply early decision to Columbia? Hoping to get into management consulting in the financial sector.


You're looking at a 2.9 GPA here that got in, I wouldn't worry too much about your GPA!
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Re: Columbia: Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 06 Aug 2013, 07:49
mgh234 wrote:
I heard Columbia cares a lot about GPA, I'm a 26 year old white male and have a 3.4 from undergrad at NYU Stern, and 750 GMAT (49q/44v). 4 years work experience doing project management work at BB IB's. Is my below average GPA going to be problematic if I apply early decision to Columbia? Hoping to get into management consulting in the financial sector.


Just make sure you highlight your work experience as being unique. You want to make sure that you don't get lumped in with the thousands of other white males in finance with super high GMAT scores just because you work at a BB bank. Your story will need to shine but again I'm another low GPA admit to CBS so I wouldn't stress about it too much. Go write some great essays.
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Re: Columbia: Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 06 Aug 2013, 11:52
Quick Q for everyone:

How important do you think applying ED is? CBS is tied for my top choice but I would much prefer to stay in California if my long shot to Stanford works out...(very unlikely). I think I'm a fringe candidate and applying ED would help tremendously.
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Re: Columbia: Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 06 Aug 2013, 12:14
ricecake wrote:
Quick Q for everyone:

How important do you think applying ED is? CBS is tied for my top choice but I would much prefer to stay in California if my long shot to Stanford works out...(very unlikely). I think I'm a fringe candidate and applying ED would help tremendously.


If you're applying ED, then you're committing to go to Columbia if they say yes - regardless of whether Stanford says yes as well. If you are applying to Stanford and would choose them first, then that indicates you should not be applying to Columbia Early Decision. Doesn't matter how "important" ED is; it's whether you would stick to the commitment that you are making with ED or not. If you wouldn't, then don't do it.

Regular Decision is completely viable for strong candidates. It's not like Columbia compromises on their standards for ED people.

EssaySnark

PS: Sorry if this sounds harsh, we're not trying to be the Ethics Police - but it's really a simple call to make.
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Re: Columbia: Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 06 Aug 2013, 13:36
essaysnark wrote:
ricecake wrote:
Quick Q for everyone:

How important do you think applying ED is? CBS is tied for my top choice but I would much prefer to stay in California if my long shot to Stanford works out...(very unlikely). I think I'm a fringe candidate and applying ED would help tremendously.


If you're applying ED, then you're committing to go to Columbia if they say yes - regardless of whether Stanford says yes as well. If you are applying to Stanford and would choose them first, then that indicates you should not be applying to Columbia Early Decision. Doesn't matter how "important" ED is; it's whether you would stick to the commitment that you are making with ED or not. If you wouldn't, then don't do it.

Regular Decision is completely viable for strong candidates. It's not like Columbia compromises on their standards for ED people.

EssaySnark

PS: Sorry if this sounds harsh, we're not trying to be the Ethics Police - but it's really a simple call to make.


Hey EssaySnark,

It really isn't harsh at all. :) I appreciate your candor. If I could I'd put my chance at Stanford at possibly less than 2% so it was more of a "mathematical" question in my mind. Do I even bother applying to Stanford at all? Or not and just focus on CBS ED.

I have heard that it's "more competitive" during regular rounds, for what it's worth, from current students (as in all things being equal you'd be more likely to get in). So not sure. But I do understand the ethics part of it!
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Re: Columbia: Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 06 Aug 2013, 14:00
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ricecake wrote:
I have heard that it's "more competitive" during regular rounds, for what it's worth, from current students (as in all things being equal you'd be more likely to get in). So not sure. But I do understand the ethics part of it!
Yes, it's more competitive in Regular Decision - as it is with all schools in Round 2. If someone is coming from an oversubscribed candidate pool or has a marginal blemish on the profile, then ED is 'easier' (if there is such a thing!) than RD. The fallacy is when people think that a flawed profile can make it in through ED - that's not what you're asking about but we hear it all the time and that's where the logic breaks down.

And on Stanford and 2%... the entire applicant pool sees a 6% admit rate. That's not the same as a probability of outcome but still, not sure where you're getting your 2% figure. :-) For everybody it's a stretch - but if you're going for the stretch goal, then it's really ruling out Columbia ED. If you're strong enough to get in through Columbia ED then you'll be strong enough in RD, generally speaking.

Here's the big risk in all of it - something that people never ever consider until after the fact:

If you get in through Columbia ED and you don't even apply to Stanford, then you'll almost definitely be kicking yourself with the whole "I wonder...?" thing. We see it happen all the time. People get accepted to one school "too easily" and then they assume they could've gotten into a higher-ranked school. We wrote about it on the EssaySnark blahg a long time ago 'cuz it comes up All. The. Time.

If you feel that you'll be kicking yourself later if you do Columbia w/o Stanford... then start off with Stanford w/o Columbia. If Stanford doesn't pan out, Columbia will be there for Regular Round.

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Re: Columbia: Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 06 Aug 2013, 20:44
essaysnark wrote:
ricecake wrote:
I have heard that it's "more competitive" during regular rounds, for what it's worth, from current students (as in all things being equal you'd be more likely to get in). So not sure. But I do understand the ethics part of it!
Yes, it's more competitive in Regular Decision - as it is with all schools in Round 2. If someone is coming from an oversubscribed candidate pool or has a marginal blemish on the profile, then ED is 'easier' (if there is such a thing!) than RD. The fallacy is when people think that a flawed profile can make it in through ED - that's not what you're asking about but we hear it all the time and that's where the logic breaks down.

And on Stanford and 2%... the entire applicant pool sees a 6% admit rate. That's not the same as a probability of outcome but still, not sure where you're getting your 2% figure. :-) For everybody it's a stretch - but if you're going for the stretch goal, then it's really ruling out Columbia ED. If you're strong enough to get in through Columbia ED then you'll be strong enough in RD, generally speaking.

Here's the big risk in all of it - something that people never ever consider until after the fact:

If you get in through Columbia ED and you don't even apply to Stanford, then you'll almost definitely be kicking yourself with the whole "I wonder...?" thing. We see it happen all the time. People get accepted to one school "too easily" and then they assume they could've gotten into a higher-ranked school. We wrote about it on the EssaySnark blahg a long time ago 'cuz it comes up All. The. Time.

If you feel that you'll be kicking yourself later if you do Columbia w/o Stanford... then start off with Stanford w/o Columbia. If Stanford doesn't pan out, Columbia will be there for Regular Round.

EssaySnark


+1 kudos. you're awesome :) thanks a bunch for the kick in the you know what.
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Re: Columbia: Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 08 Aug 2013, 12:47
Hey guys,

A question thats been bothering me for quite some time:

I work in the predictive analytics space- I apply statistical techniques (segmentation, logistic regression, cluster analysis etc) on large quantities of data, discover and predict patterns of behavior of people etc and use them to advise on Strategy and devise campaigns for banks to implement those strategy.
I work for IBM but in their Strategy unit and consult for banking and financial firms.

Would you think I would be grouped into an Indian IT male category or consulting in finance category?
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Re: Columbia: Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 08 Aug 2013, 12:51
My guess is it all depends on how you present yourself. With a unique job in a hot sector you can probably avoid getting lumped in any cluster if you spin it right.
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Re: Columbia: Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 08 Aug 2013, 13:19
What chains1910 said. :-)

At least, somewhat.

You still look like an "IT guy" to us. It's because of the IBM thing, and it's also because - pure guess here - your educational background and the entirety of your profile. If you have the very stereotypical Indian engineering college experience on the resume then that's harder to break out of.

"Consulting in finance"... maybe... except that you're at IBM and not Deloitte or E&Y or another that's a little more horizontal, at least in perception.

It's still up to you to take control of your messaging, exactly as chains1910 stated.
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Re: Columbia: Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 08 Aug 2013, 16:23
Thanks Chains,essaysnark.

Essaysnark, perception is exactly what I am talking about since people tend to make snap judgements- I worked in a startup and joined IBM through acquisition... if I look for a job, the companies that would be most eager to take me: Accenture, Mckinsey, Deloitte, etc. or any of the Banks ( for their strategy/marketing/campaign/analytics teams and not their IT or tech teams)

And well I did not fully understand what you meant by 'typical engineering college experience', but I did civil engineering from IIT and joined an analytics startup immediately after that.

(Btw, I worked in 2 startups, the second got acquired by IBM)
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Re: Columbia: Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 08 Aug 2013, 17:20
giusippe wrote:
I did civil engineering from IIT and joined an analytics startup immediately after that.
That is exactly what we mean by 'typical engineering college experience' - your profile puts you in a certain category.
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Re: Columbia: Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 08 Aug 2013, 19:17
essaysnark wrote:
giusippe wrote:
I did civil engineering from IIT and joined an analytics startup immediately after that.
That is exactly what we mean by 'typical engineering college experience' - your profile puts you in a certain category.


got it. essaysnark, thanks!

so I have a bigger demon now- Indian engineer in IT because he works in IBM, but potentially he might be doing something else if I look more closely.

Guess that part will depend on messaging.

However, that will bring another big problem for me - since IBM is a famous Technology firm, and he seems to be doing something else, he might not be doing a first rate, but some second rate job.

Any thoughts on that?
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Re: Columbia: Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 08 Aug 2013, 19:40
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Re: Columbia: Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 08 Aug 2013, 20:39
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essaysnark wrote:
Thoughts on that are, "Now you're overthinking things." ;-)


Truer words have never been said! ;)
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Re: Columbia: Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 09 Aug 2013, 14:15
Have a 3.8 GPA [Ivy] and a 327 GRE [165 V // 162 Q]. Will it be difficult with Columbia in particular to apply with GRE scores? Also, I've had 3 jobs [very large, well-known companies] since graduating college four years ago -- will this be difficult to spin? The first was a contract position.
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Re: Columbia: Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 09 Aug 2013, 14:27
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clint845 wrote:
Have a 3.8 GPA [Ivy] and a 327 GRE [165 V // 162 Q]. Will it be difficult with Columbia in particular to apply with GRE scores? Also, I've had 3 jobs [very large, well-known companies] since graduating college four years ago -- will this be difficult to spin? The first was a contract position.

The grades are great and Columbia loves good students. They traditionally have preferred the GMAT but your GRE is competitive. Don't see any problems there. The 3 jobs / 4 years might need to be explained (we prefer that to 'spinning') but you should have space in the main essay to do so. It depends on the execution.

No showstoppers from what you've shared here.
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Re: Columbia: Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 12 Aug 2013, 11:21
Wow Columbia - a new website! Finally!!! Apparently it's all the same content but now in a prettier skin, e.g., this Class Profile is same as they've had published for awhile. But it looks way better.

http://www4.gsb.columbia.edu/mba/admissions/classprofile
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Re: Columbia: Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 13 Aug 2013, 05:42
Has any of international applicants here received an interview invitation already?

In CBS's rolling-basis system, when would I expect to hear the interview invitation?
BTW, I submitted my app two weeks ago.
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Re: Columbia: Calling all applicants - Class of 2016 [#permalink] New post 13 Aug 2013, 06:14
At this time of the season, interview invites can come quite quickly; we often see them within a couple weeks of app submission - and in past years, some of our clients have been invited within a week of submission when they submitted in early August! But there's no fixed rules on it. Not sure what the timetable has been for that one GMAT Club person who got the invite, maybe they'll pipe up to say.

FYI, your location has no bearing on it, that's not a relevant factor in the equation.
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Re: Columbia: Calling all applicants - Class of 2016   [#permalink] 13 Aug 2013, 06:14
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