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Gap on a resume - maternity leave

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Gap on a resume - maternity leave [#permalink] New post 28 Oct 2008, 05:08
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I've been out of the job market for 4 years now due to maternity. I have to submit a resume with my application and have absolutely no idea how to word this. I've been googling, and searching, and looking for the answer, could not find anything. I just wanted to concentrate on motherhood till my daughter starts the school. I think I did a real good job, she is only 4 and already speaks and reads two languages, understands Spanish (can't read or speak , yet), and I've taught her read Cyrillic letters. Those 4 years been a full time job bringing up and educating my kid. Left alone trips to Europe for 3-4 months that she could really learn the language. Anyway, could smb. help me, please! I have my GMAT coming up in 3 weeks, application deadline is in a little over a month and this issue is just throwing me off.
Should I put this on resume? How will admissions office look at the 4 year gap if I don't? There is no other way to explain the gap in the application process of the school I'm applying at. Help :cry:
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Re: Gap on a resume - maternity leave [#permalink] New post 29 Oct 2008, 01:59
Looks like you are in the same boat as i am . For me its about 2 years , but the reason is same. I am going to put it as it is, I think the admission consultants do understand that you wanted to give importance to your personal life and bringing up child, so there should'nt be any problem. The only thing is you should put it constructively, like you have mentioned here, and show that your child has gained some advantage due to that. They will admire your sacrifice of work for homely duties. Dont worry, put your honest answer, that is what i am going to do.
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Re: Gap on a resume - maternity leave [#permalink] New post 29 Oct 2008, 03:00
Interesting topic.

I have personally seen that maternity gap does not have ANY impact on efficiency in workplace. We have a colleague here who joined workforce after a gap of 11 years and she is doing wonderfully.

Since business school is a conservatory for making professionals, I think business school should not view the gap negatively in any way.
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Re: Gap on a resume - maternity leave [#permalink] New post 29 Oct 2008, 06:07
The only issue I see is that you were out of work for 4 years, and by your handle I assume you were born in 1982. So that leaves room for around 1 year work experience? Unless I am wrong that might be a bigger issue.

But other than that I am sure that raising a child is commendable. I admire women who make that sacrifice.
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Re: Gap on a resume - maternity leave [#permalink] New post 29 Oct 2008, 08:13
Maternity leave is one of the most legitimate reasons to have a work gap. It's up there with military service, mormon mission, etc. In and of itself, it has no drawback.

However, it can't replace an excellent work experience. If you are 27 years old and thus have 2 years work experience other outside of maternity leave, it's still only 2 years. That's the only thing you have to worry about.
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Re: Gap on a resume - maternity leave [#permalink] New post 26 Nov 2008, 06:19
To echo what others said, I don't think there is ANY problem with your maternity leave. But there are two things you need to address very well in the application:
- why going straight to business school after the 4 years maternity leave?
- if, as terp mentioned, you are indeed from 1982, you potentially have limited (and distant!) work experience. Who's going to write your letters of recommendations for example, and how recent are they?

Really, don't worry about the leave per se. But the other two related points must be addressed to have a successful application.

My best wishes and congratulations on doing a great job as a parent.
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Re: Gap on a resume - maternity leave [#permalink] New post 26 Nov 2008, 06:41
If my wife heard you call it a sacrifice you'd have to duck because she'd smack the daylights out of you. I've never seen anyone in my life more excited about being a teacher (both my mother and grandmother are teachers) and she was so happy the day she was able to quit and become a mom fulltime. It's a calling for her and better than any career at this point in her life. Not often will you find a woman that does do the fulltime mom thing that sees it as a sacrifice. It's different, but not a sacrifice.

Think of the OP. She wasn't working for a corporation but she was doing plenty of things:
-> Chef (even if it's baby food, hot dogs, mac & cheese, etc)
-> Safety Coordinator - "Get away from that outlet!"
-> Cultural Awareness Instructor - teaching the kid multiple languages

That's just 3 because I don't have more time, but the point is there. It's a job, just not one that corporate american openly recognizes.

terp26 wrote:
The only issue I see is that you were out of work for 4 years, and by your handle I assume you were born in 1982. So that leaves room for around 1 year work experience? Unless I am wrong that might be a bigger issue.

But other than that I am sure that raising a child is commendable. I admire women who make that sacrifice.

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Re: Gap on a resume - maternity leave [#permalink] New post 26 Nov 2008, 08:42
Have you ever had professional work experience? If not, I suggest you work for a few years. They wont hold your age against you as much as they would lacking any real work experience. Even if you do have a year or two, having a four year gap is harder to overcome. You have an interesting story and I dont fault you for your decision, lots of people would love to get to do that. However, there will be a few mothers in many MBA classes who did the traditional 6 weeks to 1 year leave before returning to continue their careers. All things consider they have the edge getting in since they have the full resume.

One thing you really need to consider is that even if you do get in to the school of your dreams, recruiting will be much more difficult lacking recent work experience. Your resume will be much weaker than your classmates, unless you did 2 years at McKinsey or something like that before having your child. There have been studies on female MBAs leaving the work force to have kids too, and though they wouldnt admit it some companies might see a 4 year maternity leave and wonder if you have another kid whether you will up and leave for good again instead of just taking a few months off.

My honest opinion is do yourself a huge favor, find a job and work for 2 years then apply. As competitive as applying is, recruiting is worse because the people you are going against already passed that admissions hurdle too.
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Re: Gap on a resume - maternity leave [#permalink] New post 26 Nov 2008, 17:40
I would say that if you have had some previous experience you should be fine. just be honest about it. and maybe, why not, try a numbers game and see if at least 1 school accepts that situation.
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Re: Gap on a resume - maternity leave [#permalink] New post 06 Jan 2009, 18:58
thanks for the answers! I understand that motherhood is a very good reason to be out of work, but still... I have to put that somehow on my application. I am applying to a third-tier school, I understand that it is competitive, but it's nothing like trying to compete for a place in one of top 10. Before having a child I worked at one of UN agencies back in Europe. In US I worked part time for a year for one of the top real estate agents in the state. Anyway, I do have some work experience, I'd like to have more, but it is not that easy. I have my bachelor's from Europe, but employers do not really care about that too much, maybe unless it's IT. It is really tough. Every job (a lot of jobs) I applied where bach. is required, I did not even get an interview. And a lot of my friens are in the same boat. If your education is not local (i.e US) it means nothing for the employers.
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Re: Gap on a resume - maternity leave [#permalink] New post 07 Jan 2009, 02:56
I agree with the previous posts in terms of work experience being the big issue here.

In terms of phrasing, I think you did a pretty good job in your first post! I would just take that as a basis and work on it. Any parent should be proud of a child speaking already multiple languages and still learning, it's a great accomplishment for the parent - and trust me, your kid is going to thank you a million times later.

Whether you get the spot or not, well done for your kid.
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Re: Gap on a resume - maternity leave [#permalink] New post 05 Aug 2014, 06:21
Hello from the GMAT Club MBAbot!

Thanks to another GMAT Club member, I have just discovered this valuable topic, yet it had no discussion for over a year. I am now bumping it up - doing my job. I think you may find it valuable (esp those replies with Kudos).

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Re: Gap on a resume - maternity leave   [#permalink] 05 Aug 2014, 06:21
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