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F, Age 31, 2.8 GPA, 680 GMAT -- UCLA, USC, Emory?

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F, Age 31, 2.8 GPA, 680 GMAT -- UCLA, USC, Emory? [#permalink] New post 31 Jul 2007, 00:49
Female, Age 31, White, Born in US
2.8 GPA, Florida State University, average extracurricular experience
680 GMAT (44Q, 39V)
6 years full-time work experience, strong entrepreneurial and stronger than average corporate leadership experience
---3 years trading stocks 2001-2004
---3 years in corporate finance 2004-2007

After completing a BS in Business, I spent 3 years daytrading stocks, managing to eke out, and live off of, ~30-40K gains each year. But the 80-hour work-weeks and stress eventually outweighed my desire to hit it big, so I gave up the full-time trading (I still invest though). I entered the corporate world as a staff accountant. Within 3 months I was 'promoted' to Controller (he was fired) at a small 8M manufacturing company and I ran the entire operation with the help of the plant manager. Unfortunately, the owner, who never came in, was paying himself close to $10,000/week (no kidding) and I felt uncomfortable putting off all the lenders so that he could line his pockets. Luckily, I jumped to a better paying job as Accounting Manager of a small hospital. However, it didn't take me long before I realized what a mistake it was to have a career in healthcare, so in year 3, I changed jobs again and became a Business Analyst for a huge NYSE-traded company. I make 52,000/year and I'm very happy there, and wouldn't mind working another year or two (but I'm already 31 yrs old).

My desire is to pursue a full-time MBA at UCLA, but I would not mind attending USC, Emory, or UT Austin. Should I take a Calculus and Accounting course at my local CC to offset my TERRIBLE GPA? Should I retake the GMAT and aim for a 700?

Thanks so much for any thoughts you have, it's really appreciated!
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Re: F, Age 31, 2.8 GPA, 680 GMAT -- UCLA, USC, Emory? [#permalink] New post 01 Aug 2007, 10:13
NFT500 wrote:
Female, Age 31, White, Born in US
2.8 GPA, Florida State University, average extracurricular experience
680 GMAT (44Q, 39V)
6 years full-time work experience, strong entrepreneurial and stronger than average corporate leadership experience
---3 years trading stocks 2001-2004
---3 years in corporate finance 2004-2007

After completing a BS in Business, I spent 3 years daytrading stocks, managing to eke out, and live off of, ~30-40K gains each year. But the 80-hour work-weeks and stress eventually outweighed my desire to hit it big, so I gave up the full-time trading (I still invest though). I entered the corporate world as a staff accountant. Within 3 months I was 'promoted' to Controller (he was fired) at a small 8M manufacturing company and I ran the entire operation with the help of the plant manager. Unfortunately, the owner, who never came in, was paying himself close to $10,000/week (no kidding) and I felt uncomfortable putting off all the lenders so that he could line his pockets. Luckily, I jumped to a better paying job as Accounting Manager of a small hospital. However, it didn't take me long before I realized what a mistake it was to have a career in healthcare, so in year 3, I changed jobs again and became a Business Analyst for a huge NYSE-traded company. I make 52,000/year and I'm very happy there, and wouldn't mind working another year or two (but I'm already 31 yrs old).

My desire is to pursue a full-time MBA at UCLA, but I would not mind attending USC, Emory, or UT Austin. Should I take a Calculus and Accounting course at my local CC to offset my TERRIBLE GPA? Should I retake the GMAT and aim for a 700?

Thanks so much for any thoughts you have, it's really appreciated!


NFT500,

Quite an unusual story. You mentioned 4 good schools so you will want to have all your ducks in a row. The career progress is a bit zigzaggy and may suggest lack of direction--one weakness. Your age is another weakness, and if you lack leadership/impact on the community/extracurricular side, you have another weakness. A higher GMAT would help allay concerns about your GPA, so consider doing that. Your positives are your gender, your leadership exposure, and unusualness. Even with a higher GMAT I think UCLA might be tough given the weaknesses cited, but perhaps apply as a longshot. USC, Emory, and Texas seem more doable to me. Your essays will be critical in helping the adcoms make sense of your career moves, view it all as positive, coherent process, and see you as a mature leader who knows why she needs the MBA. Very strong reco letters will also help.

Good luck,
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F, Age 31, 2.8 GPA, 680 GMAT -- UCLA, USC, Emory?

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