Here we go.
I did my part of my undergrad degree (economics) from a Canadian University. I took a semester off and finished with a general business degree at another Canadian university. But actually I didn't finish. I came within a single course of graduating, but I had just barely made it though a bought of depression, and couldn't stomach finishing. So I went to work.
I paid for my university the whole way through by working more than part time and attending school, mostly full time. My GPA reflects my outside responsibilities as I believe my undergraduate GPA comes out to a 3.2.
I had always worked in the Bar / Restaurant industry and the job opportunities were at my beck and call. I was a manager at an 8mil/year restaurant and also a bartender, I worked every job within the industry and took a GM position at a college nightclub. After feeling like I had mastered that position, the next logical step was ownership.
In my first year of operation my small business grossed just shy of a million dollars. Paid off some of that non-bankruptable debt. Got approved for our investor treaty visa's, fired the third cancerous partner and feel fairly good about what we were able to accomplish. When my applications are submitted, I will be approaching my year two marker of being in business.
Now I want more, I want it all, I want a top masters education, at a top institution on the planet. No question. I've been to the edge of hell, I've had every opportunity imaginable to take an easy route out, to quit, and I've persevered.
Community involvement: I employ students, staff of 30, I have a manager that I have trained, someone who I've taken personal pride in elevating their leadership skills. I interact with a current landlord, a dozen suppliers, some 2000 customers per week, numerous city held professionals including police and fire, and numerous charity's, teams and clubs that we support and work with to help elevate their causes. All that could write me a letter of reference at the drop of a hat.
Back to the school part. I graduate this june. 8 years after beginning my undergraduate process. My final class is half done and I will clear the stage with my full degree. Regardless of business school, finishing was important to me and a must do.
GMAT: Will begin studying shortly. I will likely take the Veritas prep
class, as they have a large amount of class hours, which provides the structure that allows me to study best. I imagine that a high grade is attainable through a large amount of studying.
I would like to apply to the OCT 9th first round due date in the fall for Harvard. I will also apply to Wharton, Stanford and possibly Yale.
So the question is, what will a top tier school think of someone like myself. Do the top schools like entrepreneurs? I've never had it particularly easy, and it seems I have to crash hard, pick myself up and learn through a school of very hard knocks.
Now why do I live in a dorm? Apparently because my ssn is only 6 months old, I have no credit. Without any credit, nothing short of a %40 down payment is needed for real estate. And the spot is actually only a half mile from work, great amenities, fast internet and the monthly rent keeps the shower hot Plus, though at times I feel old, I'm not old enough where I look at all out of place.