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Entrepreneur Application - H/S/W/C

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Entrepreneur Application - H/S/W/C [#permalink] New post 11 Oct 2012, 15:48
I'm interesting in applying to Harvard, Stanford, Wharton, and Columbia. I want to develop my strategy and marketing skills so that I can use them in a C-Suite setting.

Demographic
- White (Canadian)
- Male

Academics
- Graduated with business degree from a top Canadian undergraduate business school (Queen's/Western/McGill)
- GPA: 3.75 (received a departmental prize for graduating as at the top of concentration, received leadership awards, won several national competitions)
- GMAT: 750

Professional
- Summer Investment Banking Analyst at Bulge Bracket in London, UK

- Full-time Investment Banking Analyst at Elite/Well-Known Boutique in Manhattan (fired after 1 year - I was running my apparel company (described below) at the same time as it was my passion/what I was in love with. My senior's found out and axed me. I ended up full-time doing the apparel company afterwards. I have good reviews from the IBD teams I worked with, not sure extent I need to disclose). I also received an offer for a $10bn+ hedge fund to join as an investment associate which was lost when I left my investment bank

- Founder/Chief Operating Officer of an Apparel company that received significant media attention and has earned ~$5m in revenues and has clothing in over 70 stores across Canada. Received several financing offers but turned them down. The company has a significant "philanthropy" twist and has raised a lot of $$ and gotten direct results for environmental causes. Stayed for 1 year, starting immediately out of undergrad and overlapping with my IBD stint.

- Founder/Chief Executive Officer of a Nutraceutical company that received significant media attention an has earned ~$4m in revenues and has over 25,000 customers. We have a strong philanthropy twist and have significantly helped combat child malnutrition through a partner non-profit organization. I've been here for ~2 years. I created it and left the Apparel company because I decided I wanted my own company to look over instead of being 1 of 4 founding members

- Tons of random crap during university (research assistant, teaching assistant, wealth management internships, F100 Corp Finance internships, etc.)

Extracurricular
Post graduation
- Raised over $40,000 and founded a non-profit for underprivileged minorities to educate them on how to put together job applications, interview, etc. [2yrs]
- Founded a non-profit mentoring/teaching students interested in finance/consulting across Canada, with ~200 members and ~50 mentors at professional firms [4yrs]
- Founded an education company tutoring junior and senior students for half a dozen finance/strategy courses and for IBD interviews. Made a bit over $100k

Undergrad
- Founder and President of a large school club [1 year]
- Founder and Vice-President of a large school club [1 year]
- Founder and Vice-President of a large school club [1 year]
- Literally tons of other random crap

Recommendation
Will be able to get strong reqs from CEOs of publically listed $500MM+ companies who I have worked closely with

My main concern is my blemish at my investment bank. Frankly, I was in love with being an entrepreneur and always chased that (as you can see from my track record of founding clubs and a tutoring business and etc. while younger). I guess it caught up to me as a banker! Definitely a cool story in my opinion, though.
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Expert Post
MBA Admissions Consulting
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Joined: 20 Apr 2003
Posts: 4874
Location: Los Angeles CA
Followers: 43

Kudos [?]: 348 [0], given: 64

Re: Entrepreneur Application - H/S/W/C [#permalink] New post 11 Oct 2012, 22:56
Expert's post
CanadianEntrepreneur wrote:
I'm interesting in applying to Harvard, Stanford, Wharton, and Columbia. I want to develop my strategy and marketing skills so that I can use them in a C-Suite setting.

Demographic
- White (Canadian)
- Male

Academics
- Graduated with business degree from a top Canadian undergraduate business school (Queen's/Western/McGill)
- GPA: 3.75 (received a departmental prize for graduating as at the top of concentration, received leadership awards, won several national competitions)
- GMAT: 750

Professional
- Summer Investment Banking Analyst at Bulge Bracket in London, UK

- Full-time Investment Banking Analyst at Elite/Well-Known Boutique in Manhattan (fired after 1 year - I was running my apparel company (described below) at the same time as it was my passion/what I was in love with. My senior's found out and axed me. I ended up full-time doing the apparel company afterwards. I have good reviews from the IBD teams I worked with, not sure extent I need to disclose). I also received an offer for a $10bn+ hedge fund to join as an investment associate which was lost when I left my investment bank

- Founder/Chief Operating Officer of an Apparel company that received significant media attention and has earned ~$5m in revenues and has clothing in over 70 stores across Canada. Received several financing offers but turned them down. The company has a significant "philanthropy" twist and has raised a lot of $$ and gotten direct results for environmental causes. Stayed for 1 year, starting immediately out of undergrad and overlapping with my IBD stint.

- Founder/Chief Executive Officer of a Nutraceutical company that received significant media attention an has earned ~$4m in revenues and has over 25,000 customers. We have a strong philanthropy twist and have significantly helped combat child malnutrition through a partner non-profit organization. I've been here for ~2 years. I created it and left the Apparel company because I decided I wanted my own company to look over instead of being 1 of 4 founding members

- Tons of random crap during university (research assistant, teaching assistant, wealth management internships, F100 Corp Finance internships, etc.)

Extracurricular
Post graduation
- Raised over $40,000 and founded a non-profit for underprivileged minorities to educate them on how to put together job applications, interview, etc. [2yrs]
- Founded a non-profit mentoring/teaching students interested in finance/consulting across Canada, with ~200 members and ~50 mentors at professional firms [4yrs]
- Founded an education company tutoring junior and senior students for half a dozen finance/strategy courses and for IBD interviews. Made a bit over $100k

Undergrad
- Founder and President of a large school club [1 year]
- Founder and Vice-President of a large school club [1 year]
- Founder and Vice-President of a large school club [1 year]
- Literally tons of other random crap

Recommendation
Will be able to get strong reqs from CEOs of publically listed $500MM+ companies who I have worked closely with

My main concern is my blemish at my investment bank. Frankly, I was in love with being an entrepreneur and always chased that (as you can see from my track record of founding clubs and a tutoring business and etc. while younger). I guess it caught up to me as a banker! Definitely a cool story in my opinion, though.


Obviously your academics and GMAT are competitive. Your work experience is also competitive, except for getting fired by the IB.

In terms of how to present that incident and convince the schools to overlook it, the details will make a big difference, and I don't think a forum post is quite the way to go. Do you believe you made a mistake here by moonlighting against the bank's rules. Or was the mistake taking the IB job and ignoring your passions. Or do you think you did everything right and the bank was being a rigid, bureaucratic idiot? You will need to show some self-awareness and reflection when you address this incident. You don't want to come across as brash.

And I think that an element of luck will play here. Some readers will be more understanding and some less understanding.

If you would like help with your MBA application, please let me know.

Best,
Linda
_________________

Linda Abraham
Accepted
310-815-9553

Co-Author of: MBA Admission for Smarties: The No-Nonsense Guide to Acceptance at Top Business Schools

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Subscribe to Accepted's Blog

Intern
Intern
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Joined: 11 Oct 2012
Posts: 14
Followers: 0

Kudos [?]: 1 [0], given: 0

Re: Entrepreneur Application - H/S/W/C [#permalink] New post 12 Oct 2012, 06:54
I think you're exactly right and that this is a story I will need to really focus on and craft. I will also need help from an external party to do this, since it's pretty critical in overcoming my main application weakness.

In brief, I don't think the bank was a "rigid idiot" for what they did. I would never blame anyone else for my own mistakes. I was never passionate about IBD, but I started my career because I needed the money to pay back my student loans and to bankroll a venture of my own. I intended on doing banking for longer than I did (and was even going to go off to a hedge fund), but the truth is that I became very passionate about building the apparel company, to the point where it's pretty much all I would think about and focus on. I was still ranked top bucket in my class for mid-term reviews, but my heart wasn't in the work and the experience made me realize I wasn't going in the career direction that was right for me. It was very hard to admit, since I had worked hard to get my IBD job, but I knew pursuing a start-up was the right decision and I haven't looked back since. As an FYI, the reason the bank found out what I was doing is because I told them. I was trying to seek advice for what I should do, career-wise, with my assigned mentor.

Overall, I take this as a learning experience and know it's part of the unique experiences that has led me to where I am today. I've had a very interesting/non-traditional path, and I certainly wouldn't change that for anything. I hope I can show the MBA admissions team that these experiences (and failures) have made me wiser/stronger and have helped round out my skill set.

What exact sort of help/experience do you have with these sorts of situations and how confident are you that I can salvage it with your help?
Expert Post
MBA Admissions Consulting
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Joined: 20 Apr 2003
Posts: 4874
Location: Los Angeles CA
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Kudos [?]: 348 [0], given: 64

Re: Entrepreneur Application - H/S/W/C [#permalink] New post 14 Oct 2012, 19:25
Expert's post
CanadianEntrepreneur wrote:
I think you're exactly right and that this is a story I will need to really focus on and craft. I will also need help from an external party to do this, since it's pretty critical in overcoming my main application weakness.

In brief, I don't think the bank was a "rigid idiot" for what they did. I would never blame anyone else for my own mistakes. I was never passionate about IBD, but I started my career because I needed the money to pay back my student loans and to bankroll a venture of my own. I intended on doing banking for longer than I did (and was even going to go off to a hedge fund), but the truth is that I became very passionate about building the apparel company, to the point where it's pretty much all I would think about and focus on. I was still ranked top bucket in my class for mid-term reviews, but my heart wasn't in the work and the experience made me realize I wasn't going in the career direction that was right for me. It was very hard to admit, since I had worked hard to get my IBD job, but I knew pursuing a start-up was the right decision and I haven't looked back since. As an FYI, the reason the bank found out what I was doing is because I told them. I was trying to seek advice for what I should do, career-wise, with my assigned mentor.

Overall, I take this as a learning experience and know it's part of the unique experiences that has led me to where I am today. I've had a very interesting/non-traditional path, and I certainly wouldn't change that for anything. I hope I can show the MBA admissions team that these experiences (and failures) have made me wiser/stronger and have helped round out my skill set.

What exact sort of help/experience do you have with these sorts of situations and how confident are you that I can salvage it with your help?


Canadian Entrepreneur,

You are showing self-awareness in your posts, and we would certainly help you present what happened in a way that highlights that quality, allows you to accept responsibility for mistakes you may have made as well as pointing out the benefits of your non-traditional path and the lessons you have learned from both the good and the bad on that path. We have worked with applicants who have been laid off, who have had criminal records, and who have had academic issues so we have experience helping candidates with different challenges. As I indicated in my last post, we would need to get into the details.

You can learn about our MBA admissions consulting and application essay editing by clicking on the link. We would be delighted to work with you. Please let me know if you would like to be put in touch with a consultant or if you have additional questions.

Best,
Linda
_________________

Linda Abraham
Accepted
310-815-9553

Co-Author of: MBA Admission for Smarties: The No-Nonsense Guide to Acceptance at Top Business Schools

Follow Accepted on Twitter
Friend Accepted on Facebook
Subscribe to Accepted's Blog

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