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Dear Hjort

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Joined: 15 Jan 2008
Posts: 17
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Dear Hjort [#permalink] New post 16 Feb 2008, 02:17
Hello, Hjort,

I posted this same message to Paul Bodine, but apparently he must be really busy with his other work.

While I was eagerly waiting for his feedback, I came across a couple of your posts (actually more than a couple), and I came to realize that perhaps your constructive evaluation would provide me with some sort of soothing guidance in this whole process.

For your information, I applied to Wharton in 2004, but I was eventually denied in the first round after getting invited to interview.

Now four years have passed by with significant career progress and increased awareness and maturity on everything, but I still feel insecure whether I have the profile that MBA programs are willing to "take risk" on.

So here we go, and I hope that you provide the most genuine feedback on my profile. Scathing and harsh as your comments may be, I would nevertheless highly appreciate your honest comment.

Age: 30

Undergraduates: UCLA Business Economics, 3.25 GPA in 2001 (with one failed grade in Business Law for not having been able to take the final exam, I eventually received B in the subsequent quarter. Decent quant and finance related courses grades with A, B, B+, A- in multivariable calculus, Managerial Finance, Public Finance, and Money and Banking)

Graduated in 2001.

GMAT: 610 in the first time, 710 in the second time (95 percentile, Q: 90%, V: 85%)

Employment:

In college (since most of them were on a full time basis)

1. small real estate finance
2. small mortgage broker company entrepreneurship (supervised young early 20's sales staff of ten)
3. A very well known Sales and Trading Institution (sales and trading assistant on the desk)

After college:

1. Top Real Estate Consulting Firm in LA; Financial Aanalyst; only four months (got laid off due to the heavy downsizing for Sep 11th attacks)

Good: a well recognized top consulting firm in real estate industry
Bad: obviously getting laid off part with only four months of WE

2. Another multinational full service real estate consulting firm in KOREA, Associate Consultant

Good: many enriching experiences of working directly with high level executives at multinational corporations in Korea, led a team of older consultants for a couple of projects.

Bad: resigned only after 10 months after realizing that I don’t want my life to be defined in terms of “associate consultant, financial analyst”

** major turning point of life, something I still take pride in for drastically altering my professional path landscape and by taking risk on something I believe that I would be good at - teaching.

3. A Boutique Test Prep Private Academy, Writing Teacher

Good: promoted to Head of Faculty managing six people in less than six months
Bad: it is what it is: a small, unrecognized “test prep” academy.

3. A very well known test prep or private academy company (there are only a few, and the company is one of them. I am sure you can come up with the name in no time.), Academic Director in charge of four people staff

Good: academic director in charge of the first office expansion project. Did very well in terms of exceeding target revenue and feedback.

Bad: quit only after one year after coming to term with my decision to found my own private academy.

4. Finally, my own current entrepreneur private academy.

Good: doubled the revenue in every year for the past three years. Expanded and moved to the current 3000 sq office in the most premier educational district in Seoul, Korea.

I was hired as a de factor college counselor for one government sponsored international school and helped students to fulfil their goal of getting into top U.S. colleges. With limited resources and finances, we, together, literally made the program to work. Students, as a result of their hard work, received an award from school upon graduation.

Bad: didn’t have too much money to begin with, so I started on a very modest fashion with less than 600 sq. office.

Again, no matter how I put it, it is what it is: a small, still emerging private test prep company (although I want to label it more as private full educational institution)

Why NOW?
- I am in the critical juncture of delegating some of the teaching responsibities to cope with the increasing need to oversee, plan, manage, and execute the impending growth period for the company.

Why MBA?
Professionally: the private education, especially the English-focused education, has experienced the most robust growth in the past six years among all the industries in Korea.

The web-like network backing and relationship with some of the well established private academic educations and conglomerates in Korea epitomizes the untapped potential, sophistication, significance, and opportunities in the industry.

Thus, I would like to ensure the continued future success by being exposed to an array of general management/entrepreneurship tools and by preparing for the potential strategic alliances with some of the active conglomerates.

Personally: In all honesty, I am scared. Over the years, as I have aged, there is nothing more scary than experiencing success without being able to really articulate the underlying reasons for it.

LT Goal: establishing a liberal arts college in Korea where the demise of the liberal arts-focused college has been really an alarming phenomenon.

Why NOT EMBA?
Given my extensive working experience of spending time with youngsters, I do believe that I would be much suited for learning with diverse people from various walks of life.

MBA, I believe, is another process of self-affirmation. As such, it should be a give and take (obviously). Thus, I would like to learn in an ideal environment in which I would be able to give back to my immediate community, my classmates and students who may be a bit younger than me.

Extracurricular Activities:
In college:
1. Director, ethnic based organizations with over 80 members. Now the number of alumni and members has grown to 200.

2. political group, Director of Research; appointed for the position of Director of Research. Did extensive work with this political group for some emerging politician in Korea. The politician whom I had reported directly to became the President of Korea.

3. community service volunteer work for two years.

Post College:
A professional network; founder, set up, arranged, and provided presentations to help students increase their awareness on penetrating main stream corporate jobs.

Juvenile correction institution, volunteering tutor for two years.

Amateur Baseball League, for three years.

Personal: stayed on welfare for five years from age 13 to 18 for my mother’s struggle with diabetes and multiple sclerosis. My mother eventually died in my freshman year. (not that this would matter greatly, since this happened so many years ago)

So here is my profile.

I know the information is really long, and I really apologize for having to force you to read all of this.

So the final question is given my age, job hopping in my early career, and less than stellar company name (well, it is not a blue chip company for sure) of my business, do I even stand chance for H/S/W and Columbia?

Which school would my profile fit in nicely, and vice versa?
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Dear Hjort   [#permalink] 16 Feb 2008, 02:17
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Dear Hjort

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