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# Low Undergrad GPA Success Stories

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Current Student
Joined: 16 Jul 2010
Posts: 153
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Schools: UCLA Anderson FEMBA Class of 2014
Followers: 3

Kudos [?]: 17 [0], given: 4

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18 Oct 2010, 06:43
thanks for posting everyone. This thread has been tremendously motivating
Intern
Joined: 19 Jul 2010
Posts: 8
Followers: 0

Kudos [?]: 0 [0], given: 0

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18 Oct 2010, 11:20
Hoping to be a success story:

2.6 GPA BBA in Finance (failed four in college)
Played D1 baseball (scholarship covered tuition/books)
GMAT: 670
Mexican America (U.S. Citizen)
First person to attend college in my family
Took a year off before college to volunteer at my high school coaching baseball and mentoring students in math and economics
Started a non profit scholarship fund in 2002 to help high school students pay for college or vocational school.
Started a conf to educate college students on careers in a hot industry
Worked four years on an trading desk within an investment bank

applying to UT, Rice, Penn and Harvard
Intern
Joined: 30 Apr 2010
Posts: 13
Location: India
GMAT Date: 05-12-2014
GPA: 3.3
WE: Information Technology (Computer Software)
Followers: 0

Kudos [?]: 5 [0], given: 16

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18 Oct 2010, 11:39
My GPAs - UG is 2.9 and PG is 3.27.

The master's GPA can be a baseline. ? or only UG GPA is considered for MBA admission.?

Thanks, Vasu
Retired Moderator
Status: Darden Class of 2013
Joined: 28 Jul 2009
Posts: 1838
Schools: University of Virginia
Followers: 21

Kudos [?]: 314 [0], given: 37

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18 Oct 2010, 11:48
Both your UGPA and Master's GPA will be taken into consideration as you'll fill both out on your application. However, I believe most AdComs will place a bigger emphasis on your undergrad GPA since most of the master's GPAs are inflated.
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Current Student
Joined: 12 Jun 2009
Posts: 1847
Location: United States (NC)
Concentration: Strategy, Finance
Schools: UNC (Kenan-Flagler) - Class of 2013
GMAT 1: 720 Q49 V39
WE: Programming (Computer Software)
Followers: 23

Kudos [?]: 236 [0], given: 52

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18 Oct 2010, 12:13
Seeni wrote:
My GPAs - UG is 2.9 and PG is 3.27.

The master's GPA can be a baseline. ? or only UG GPA is considered for MBA admission.?

Thanks, Vasu

this is freaky because i got almost exact gpa 2.92 and 3.27
_________________

Intern
Joined: 30 Apr 2010
Posts: 13
Location: India
GMAT Date: 05-12-2014
GPA: 3.3
WE: Information Technology (Computer Software)
Followers: 0

Kudos [?]: 5 [0], given: 16

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18 Oct 2010, 15:34
oh.. that's interesting..

somehow GPAs can be same...no wonder..but can i get your GMAT-2 score max. ? .. let me aim for it.

Thank you.!
Manager
Joined: 22 Jul 2010
Posts: 128
Schools: Ross
WE 1: Consultant
Followers: 1

Kudos [?]: 7 [0], given: 1

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28 Feb 2011, 13:20
Is this dead? No more success stories from people who applied this yr to share?
Intern
Joined: 19 Jan 2011
Posts: 4
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Kudos [?]: 2 [0], given: 0

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28 Feb 2011, 13:30
2
This post was
BOOKMARKED
my undergrad GPA was 2.8 from a top-10 private school GMAT 660, I applied to 3 schools:

2. Cornell- Admit with $$3. Rochester- Admit with full-ride Senior Manager Joined: 01 Dec 2010 Posts: 267 Schools: CBS Class of 2013 Followers: 7 Kudos [?]: 16 [0], given: 7 Re: Low Undergrad GPA Success Stories [#permalink] ### Show Tags 28 Feb 2011, 13:51 jordanhendrix wrote: ^^an IVY league UG help tremendously Josie. you have 2 (one with a 3.9, although just a few classes), female and a 720?.....congrats and all that good stuff, but you are a strong candidate....do you have blue chip WE too? if so get outta here....lol haha what is blue chip WE? Current Student Joined: 07 May 2010 Posts: 731 Followers: 14 Kudos [?]: 87 [0], given: 66 Re: Low Undergrad GPA Success Stories [#permalink] ### Show Tags 28 Feb 2011, 13:52 josiebella wrote: jordanhendrix wrote: ^^an IVY league UG help tremendously Josie. you have 2 (one with a 3.9, although just a few classes), female and a 720?.....congrats and all that good stuff, but you are a strong candidate....do you have blue chip WE too? if so get outta here....lol haha what is blue chip WE? like goldman or mckinsey Work Experience _________________ Senior Manager Joined: 01 Dec 2010 Posts: 267 Schools: CBS Class of 2013 Followers: 7 Kudos [?]: 16 [0], given: 7 Re: Low Undergrad GPA Success Stories [#permalink] ### Show Tags 28 Feb 2011, 13:59 jordanhendrix wrote: josiebella wrote: jordanhendrix wrote: ^^an IVY league UG help tremendously Josie. you have 2 (one with a 3.9, although just a few classes), female and a 720?.....congrats and all that good stuff, but you are a strong candidate....do you have blue chip WE too? if so get outta here....lol haha what is blue chip WE? like goldman or mckinsey Work Experience nope. I work in the fashion / beauty sector in finance. Current Student Joined: 07 May 2010 Posts: 731 Followers: 14 Kudos [?]: 87 [0], given: 66 Re: Low Undergrad GPA Success Stories [#permalink] ### Show Tags 28 Feb 2011, 14:03 ^^^ so you have DIVERSE experience too?.....you are forbidden from posting in this thread. haha But on a side note, as we can see GPA isnt everything, but to overcome a low one you better be very strong in everything else for a top tier school. Seriously though Josie, not trying to take anything away from your accomplishments....congrats on CBS _________________ Senior Manager Joined: 01 Dec 2010 Posts: 267 Schools: CBS Class of 2013 Followers: 7 Kudos [?]: 16 [0], given: 7 Re: Low Undergrad GPA Success Stories [#permalink] ### Show Tags 28 Feb 2011, 14:10 jordanhendrix wrote: ^^^ so you have DIVERSE experience too?.....you are forbidden from posting in this thread. haha But on a side note, as we can see GPA isnt everything, but to overcome a low one you better be very strong in everything else for a top tier school. Seriously though Josie, not trying to take anything away from your accomplishments....congrats on CBS thanks i think the most important thing is to have a good story that makes sense. and not to sell youself short. Manager Joined: 22 Jul 2010 Posts: 128 Schools: Ross WE 1: Consultant Followers: 1 Kudos [?]: 7 [0], given: 1 Re: Low Undergrad GPA Success Stories [#permalink] ### Show Tags 01 Mar 2011, 09:26 I will post my story once I find out more in a few weeks. Hopefully it'll be a success story . Thanks for all the contributors! Intern Joined: 24 Aug 2010 Posts: 29 Followers: 4 Kudos [?]: 8 [0], given: 3 Re: Low Undergrad GPA Success Stories [#permalink] ### Show Tags 07 Mar 2011, 14:18 Hi, Just wanted to share my stats a bit, since I finally got an admit today. 1) < 3.0 UG GPA from a State University, Humanities 2) 700 GMAT 3) Am pretty sure I'm about to get dinged from Stanford--it was a big stretch for me (slightly higher age/low gpa), but I just had to try 4) Have been admitted to University Washington Foster and Ross I addressed my low GPA in the optional essay, not making excuses but just being very factual about why I didn’t do well and offered other evidence of my academic abilities (other strong semesters, GMAT, etc.). Hope this helps! Last edited by RuggedIdealist on 19 Apr 2011, 09:40, edited 1 time in total. Intern Joined: 25 Feb 2011 Posts: 10 Schools: Haas, Duke (A), Ross (int), Yale, UVA, UCLA, UNC (A) Followers: 1 Kudos [?]: 3 [0], given: 0 Re: Low Undergrad GPA Success Stories [#permalink] ### Show Tags 14 Mar 2011, 12:20 2 This post was BOOKMARKED I wish I had found this thread prior to applying - it would have been very motivating. Regardless, I consider myself very lucky: Demographics 31 year old, white male UG - 2.67 gpa at univ. ranked ~50th. Economics. Earned every possible letter grade (As, Bs, Cs, Ds, Fs, Pass, Is, Ws, and Zs). Lowest semester 0.75. Wrote a strong essay explaining how this experience of struggling through college made me a better person and better at my job. Discussed personal struggles I overcame. GMAT - 720 41V 47Q 6.0 AWA. WE Worked in education for the leaders in Ed. reform. Been teacher, admin, fundraiser. Strong success in field. Applied to: Duke Fuqua: R1 Accepted Michigan Ross: R2 Accepted with  UNC KF: R2 Accepted Yale SOM: R2 Ding w/o interview Berkeley Haas: R2 Ding w/o interview UVA: R2 no decision; no interview UCLA: R2 no decision; no interview I would credit my success to: 1. Being a non-traditional candidate. I have a demonstrated passion. I was able to demonstrate how an MBA would help me. I think it was convincing to show how I will use an MBA to "save the world." Having worked for a leader in the industry it made up for my poor academic performance. 2. Strong GMAT - with a bad GPA you got to study your a$$-off.
3. Strong essays: Each essay went through 10+ rounds of substantive edits.

Good luck to all low GPA applicants!
Intern
Joined: 22 Feb 2011
Posts: 12
Followers: 0

Kudos [?]: 1 [0], given: 0

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14 Mar 2011, 14:49
tlshields wrote:
I wish I had found this thread prior to applying - it would have been very motivating. Regardless, I consider myself very lucky:
Demographics 31 year old, white male
UG - 2.67 gpa at univ. ranked ~50th. Economics. Earned every possible letter grade (As, Bs, Cs, Ds, Fs, Pass, Is, Ws, and Zs). Lowest semester 0.75. Wrote a strong essay explaining how this experience of struggling through college made me a better person and better at my job. Discussed personal struggles I overcame.
GMAT - 720 41V 47Q 6.0 AWA.
WE Worked in education for the leaders in Ed. reform. Been teacher, admin, fundraiser. Strong success in field.
Applied to:
Duke Fuqua: R1 Accepted
Michigan Ross: R2 Accepted with \$
UNC KF: R2 Accepted
Yale SOM: R2 Ding w/o interview
Berkeley Haas: R2 Ding w/o interview
UVA: R2 no decision; no interview
UCLA: R2 no decision; no interview

I would credit my success to:
1. Being a non-traditional candidate. I have a demonstrated passion. I was able to demonstrate how an MBA would help me. I think it was convincing to show how I will use an MBA to "save the world." Having worked for a leader in the industry it made up for my poor academic performance.
2. Strong GMAT - with a bad GPA you got to study your a$$-off. 3. Strong essays: Each essay went through 10+ rounds of substantive edits. Good luck to all low GPA applicants! Congrats! Did you do anything to supplement your grades like take extra courses? Manager Joined: 23 Aug 2010 Posts: 111 Schools: Fuqua(no int), Darden(no int), McCombs , Kenan-Flagler, McDonough, Smith(w/$$)
Followers: 1

Kudos [?]: 1 [0], given: 0

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22 Mar 2011, 11:08
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Much like others, I consider myself lucky, but was able to overcome an abysmal UG GPA

27 year old white male

UG GPA: 2.6 from top 20 college. Philosophy major (wtf was i thinking ). Addressed head-on GPA in all optional essays and in interviews.
GMAT: 700
WE: 5 years, consulting/sales&marketing. Not for any of the big firms

Applied to:
Duke Fuqua - R2 no interview
UVA Darden - R2 no interview
Georgetown McDonough - R2 waitlist
UMD Smith - Accepted w/ $$UNC Kenan-Flagler - Accepted, but no$$ info yet
UT Austin McCombs - R2 interview, waiting for results

While I got dinged off the bat at UVA and Duke, probably because of my GPA, I think my essays and WE showed the adcoms at the other schools that I have changed significantly since I earned such low marks in undergrad. With a crap GPA like mine, I think you have to make everything else in your package spectacular.

I also tried very hard to put my personality into my essays and make them memorable. My work is traditional and boring, and my stats are not outstanding, so I tried to include other things that would help me stand out.

Dings aside, I feel like getting into a top-20 program (one that I'm thrilled about) with a 2.6 GPA is definitely a success story. I'll re-read my app tonight to see if I can see anything else that may have helped.
Stacy Blackman Representative
Joined: 03 Nov 2010
Posts: 1573
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Followers: 35

Kudos [?]: 114 [0], given: 0

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24 Mar 2011, 08:56
Expert's post
1
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Hope this story is of help. A low GPA isn't something you should be proud, but there are ways to mitigate the damage on your application.

We had a client who was solid in most areas – he had deep extra-curricular interests, average but interesting work experience and some very interesting personal stories. However, he had a below average GPA that could have derailed his entire application (his GPA was below a 3.0).

In his essay, we discussed his pursuit and intense interest in martial arts. That interest actually took him away from school for two semesters and became a distraction that contributed to a very low GPA. But it also helped him develop certain characteristics and unique abilities that strengthened his character, and made him a much stronger leader and team player. In his essays he discussed his renewed commitment to academics and explained how he had developed qualities that would enable him to excel in business school and in the business world.

In the end, he was admitted into both Columbia and Chicago.

Although a low GPA isn't great, there are ways to discuss and frame the story to your advantage.

Hope this was of help.

Cheers,

Conrad and the Stacy Blackman Team
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Current Student
Joined: 01 Mar 2010
Posts: 106
Location: United States (FL)
Concentration: Finance, Nonprofit
GMAT 1: 640 Q36 V41
GMAT 2: 630 Q42 V34
GMAT 3: 640 Q42 V35
GMAT 4: 620 Q42 V34
GMAT 5: 700 Q45 V40
GPA: 2.71
WE: Underwriter (Other)
Followers: 2

Kudos [?]: 13 [0], given: 20

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28 Mar 2011, 11:52
This is still a work in progress, but hopefully it will turn into a success story:

GPA: 2.72 from a top 75 liberal arts college, english major
GMAT: 700 Q45 V40
Race / Ethnicity: White, part Hispanic, (I'm Venezuelan American, born in Venezuela to Venezuelan mother)

My priorities, in order, as an undergraduate:

1) drinking / partying
2) playing division III lacrosse for my college
3) playing videogames
5) drinking / partying

Even worse, my GPA steadily dropped as my academic career progressed, starting off at about a 3.2 my first semester of my freshman year before progressing downward and culminating in a 1.8 the second semester of my senior year, during which I received an F and a no credit for my senior thesis, which I had to return and complete the following semester.

To combat this, years later, I retook the course I failed at DePaul University and received an A. I also took an accounting course through UCLA extension, earning another A. I did not take a single quantitative course as an undergraduate so I wanted to show that I had some quantitative skills.

My work / managerial experience is somewhat limited. For the past 5 years, I've worked for a community bank, where I've held various positions. Currently, I'm in a largely adminstrative position in the bank's loan department. This required a lot of spin in my essays, and personally I think this is more of a turn off than my low GPA.

Some decent volunteer work, but nothing recently.

Applying to:
Ross
Marshall
McCombs
Anderson

I'm also going in during round 3, so it's going to be even tougher. I haven't heard from Ross, so that's not looking good. In the event I receive 4 dings, I think I may take 1 or 2 additional courses to show more of my quantitative abilities, and maybe get involved in some volunteer work.

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