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How do I neutralize a low GPA?

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How do I neutralize a low GPA? [#permalink] New post 24 Apr 2007, 07:33
Paul,

IтАЩm looking to apply to a top 15 B-School this upcoming fall, so right now IтАЩm in the process of preparing my application. My edge in getting into a top program is my unique work experience; I work on the business side of fashion and have seen my peers over the past 2 years get into Stern, HBS, Duke and WhartonтАж each of them with LESS impressive responsibilities than I have. There is a demand from B-Schools for non-traditional work experience and I will play this up to my utmost advantage.

Right now IтАЩm studying for the GMAT and plan on getting between 650-700. However, my concern is my low GPA from undergradтАж a 3.0, econ/math major from a top 20 university. To overcome this, IтАЩm looking into taking summer courses (undergrad) from either Hunter College or Baruch here in NYC. IтАЩm wondering if these will take emphasis off my 3.0 given that the courses will be from a less prestigious university. IтАЩve read about people on here taking online courses from UCLA and am thinking if this might be a better route. Also will the courses I select matterтАж IтАЩm planning on taking some applied stats courses and intro to corporate finance. Will it matter if I take the courses from 2 different places?

I also plan on doing some charity/community service work as wellтАж but please advise on how to downplay the 3.0..

Thank you,
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Re: How do I neutralize a low GPA? [#permalink] New post 30 Apr 2007, 11:51
baer wrote:
Paul,

I’m looking to apply to a top 15 B-School this upcoming fall, so right now I’m in the process of preparing my application. My edge in getting into a top program is my unique work experience; I work on the business side of fashion and have seen my peers over the past 2 years get into Stern, HBS, Duke and Wharton… each of them with LESS impressive responsibilities than I have. There is a demand from B-Schools for non-traditional work experience and I will play this up to my utmost advantage.

Right now I’m studying for the GMAT and plan on getting between 650-700. However, my concern is my low GPA from undergrad… a 3.0, econ/math major from a top 20 university. To overcome this, I’m looking into taking summer courses (undergrad) from either Hunter College or Baruch here in NYC. I’m wondering if these will take emphasis off my 3.0 given that the courses will be from a less prestigious university. I’ve read about people on here taking online courses from UCLA and am thinking if this might be a better route. Also will the courses I select matter… I’m planning on taking some applied stats courses and intro to corporate finance. Will it matter if I take the courses from 2 different places?

I also plan on doing some charity/community service work as well… but please advise on how to downplay the 3.0..

Thank you,


baer,

The prestige of the school at which you take the "alternative transcript" courses does not matter as much as the grade you get in them, however, it certainly wouldn't hurt to take them at the best school you can. Given that your GPA is not awful and was achieved at a strong school, I actually think posting a high GMAT score (700+) would be more helpful for you than the classes (though, of course, you could do both). Schools generally like to see you performing well in hard-core "pre-MBA" quant courses like statistics, calculus, or accounting, so I wouldn't bother taking anything too far removed from these core subjects.

No problem taking the classes at different schools. Your fashion background is an asset, I agree, but if you're aiming high you will not want your industry to be the only thing that makes you stand out. Hopefully, you will have some unusual experiences on the family background side or personally such as international experience or difficult challenges overcome. Also, showing high impact and leadership in every aspect of your life will help as well. Try to make the charity work you do be in a *leadership* role.

Good luck,
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 [#permalink] New post 12 Jun 2007, 14:11
Update:

I have taken the GMAT and scored a disappointing 670 (43Q, 40V). I rushed thru a few easy questions in the beginning of the quant section, got them wrong, and couldn't recover. I plan on taking the test again. All my practice scores have been the in 700-720 range.

In my original post, I should have included that I can show fantastic leadership experience in my current job. Leadership that involves only a bit of leading people, but moreso leadership in the form of company direction and ideas. I've been with the same company for the past 3 years, and will have 4 years by matriculation in 2008. I believe my work experience will really set me apart and be my most important asset.

My target schools are Columbia ED (may be able to alumni rec), Cornell, Stern part time, and Duke. What are my chances? What is the minimum GMAT score I'll need to be competitive? I'm also a white male.
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 [#permalink] New post 12 Jun 2007, 15:08
baer wrote:
Update:

I have taken the GMAT and scored a disappointing 670 (43Q, 40V). I rushed thru a few easy questions in the beginning of the quant section, got them wrong, and couldn't recover. I plan on taking the test again. All my practice scores have been the in 700-720 range.

In my original post, I should have included that I can show fantastic leadership experience in my current job. Leadership that involves only a bit of leading people, but moreso leadership in the form of company direction and ideas. I've been with the same company for the past 3 years, and will have 4 years by matriculation in 2008. I believe my work experience will really set me apart and be my most important asset.

My target schools are Columbia ED (may be able to alumni rec), Cornell, Stern part time, and Duke. What are my chances? What is the minimum GMAT score I'll need to be competitive? I'm also a white male.


baer,

Good to hear that your leadership stories are strong. You could conceivably get into all four programs with a 670, but I wouldn't bet money on it. Much better to aim for all 4 with a strong 700. Your "white maleness" is a factor, since a female with your background and a 670 would have better odds. You are smart to take full advantage of the increased odds that ED and part-time programs offer. Keep gunning.

Good luck,
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Author, Great Applications for Business School and Perfect Phrases for Business School Acceptance

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