I am 29 year potential applicant to Chicago, Columbia & Wharton. I took the GMAT this June & scored 740 (50/39). I have over 5 years of experience with BASF, GE & Citigroup. I am now working as a sell side analyst at Citigroup in a leadership position. At BASF, I was part of a turn around team.
I already have an MBA & am a CFA level III candidate. I am looking for an MBA from the mentioned schools to move into Investment Management (Buy Side). There are hardly any opportunities for a career in Buy Side in India. Plus the capital markets are still evolving making it difficult for a fund manager to follow any particular investing style.
I have done my fair bit of extra cirriculars / achievements. I was the president of the students council and the founder member of the finance club at my B-School. Won the best all India summer project competition (finance). Represented the country for an international symposium on e-education. I led a project to teach under priviledged childern for 15 months at GE Elfun. I participated in the Jimmy Carter Work Project through Citigroup.
I have a disastrous under grad record. The main reason was that I had to work full time to fund my education. I had to fund my B-school education also. I have, however, tried to mitigate the UG record by enrolling and clearing two levels of the CFA program & doing excpetionally well during my MBA.
Do you think I stand a chance at the mentioned schools?
I think Chicago might be your best shot, Columbia your toughest. Your negatives--age (slight), GPA, existing MBA--are not deal-breakers individually but in aggregation they require you to have some good compensating material. IMO, your GMAT and CFA vanquish the negative of your GPA. The existing MBA will hurt if you fail to make a really strong case for why it is not equivalent to the MBA you seek. Your test, I think, will be making your career progress so far sound coherent and focused and moving in a logical, compelling direction. If you do, you have a modest, decent chance at Chicago, a notch less than that at Wharton, with CBS the longer-shot.
Paul Bodine /
Author, Great Applications for Business School and Perfect Phrases for Business School Acceptance
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