I found this forum about a month ago, and since then i've been adicted to it. I agree with other people that the Challanges just rock! I took 16 of them, in 2 weeks. Excellent experience.
Also, get the manhattan Verbal workbook and take as many as you can LSAT tests (RC section especially). Those two thinks raised my verbal from 32 to 46 in a month! And trust me my english sucks (i am not a native speaker)
Anyway, so since most of you guys have plenty more experience with B-School aplications, I would like to ask you for advice.
Even thought I got 750, I am in a hole. Let me start with my profile:
Graduated 2006 from a small college in Midwest with double major in econ/finance and international business, Magna Cum (3.9)..0.01 away from Summa
I have completed two high level internships in DC (in a headquarters of a leading Public Affairs Consulting Firm, and as an intern to the current Polish Minister of Defense at a prominent DC think-tank).
I have also completed a semester long co-ap as a research intern to a fairly known development economist
in American Enterprise Institute in DC (one of the most prestigues think tanks in the world). As part of my internships and co-aps, I did research for two studies/papers that were published, researched and analyzed development economics for six months, attended number of conferences (including one in europe with dozens of presidents, politicians, etc), etc.
I also worked as an independent consultant, helping few companies from Poland, during my senior year in college. As a part of it I helped put together a business plan for a new business venture.
Following this, I was employed by the same firm to go to South America for two months, and developed contacts/conduct market research in wine industry. I also wrote couple reports about the economic/political enviroment in Poland.
In College I was a VP of my fraternity, put together from the basics a new community service/pr program for the entire year, initiated and organized over 20 events, manged group of 50 people, and raised over $10,000. The chapters work and my own was recognized through numeral awards.
I also started a local chapter of a business fraternity PBL, and was placed in (top 10) of two national competition in Business.
I was also a research assistant for a socio-econ publication about central europe.
My family owns a decent size business back home, and I am suppose to come back and take it over in 4-5 years max. Therefore, I would like to complete all my education before that.
1) Should i go for an MBA? What are my chances at top 10, top 15 schools? I cannot get any valuable work experience in the states, because of the visa status, and wouldnt want to be at home longer than a year. So admission in 2007 is my best shot.
2) Master of Finance program. Should I retake my GMAT for it? My Q=48, not very good. For example Oxford MF has an average GMAT 730. Should I retake my GMAT to get a better Quant score (i was nerves the first time, i am sure i can get 50-52, as i did during prep tests)? Even thought my general score may be the same, would it make a difference if my quant was raised to 50? Is it worth the effort?
Finally, what programs in MF would you guys recomend? I am looking into Vanderbilt, Brandeis, Oxford, LSE, Cambridge. I am not interested in financial mathematics, but pure finance/financial economics.
Thanks a lot for all your help. I am really pesimistic about my career outlook, even thought i seem to have good GMAT, GPA, and internship experience.
What schools should i take a shot at? What about retaking GMAT? Will LSE or Oxford care if my Q was only 48, given overall 750?
You guys rock.