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I am thinking about applying to an MBA program. I really want to go to HBS, Wharton, or U of Chicago. Let me know what you think are my chances. Here is my story:
I have a 3.4 undergraduate gpa with a major in History and a Business Management minor from a top 100 university. I have a gmat score of 710. I have lived in El Salvador for several years and speak Spanish fluently. I have worked as a financial services professional for a large life insurance company for the last three years. I have had quite a bit of success at work and have received several professional designations such as: CFP, ChFC, and CLU. I am also involved in a community organization in the which business professionals donate time to teach high school and jr high school students business topics.
Let me know what I need to improve to have a better chance at HBS, Wharton, or CHicago.
I don't see anything in your profile that might prevent you from getting into a top school. Your essays would be a crucial component. A few questions to ask yourself: Do you have post-MBA goals that are clearly-defined in your essays, how do those relate to your past experience? Why that particular school and what would you contribute if you got in? Have you presented the adcom with details about your personality via personal stories and anecdotes, how do you stand out and what makes you unique?
I may add that it is a common pitfall for international applicants (myself included) to just go with the big-5 b-schools without a clear strategy. Developing and articulating your short and long term goals as noted above will help you to determine fit at the three schools that you have mentioned, and potential others.
Also, admission to a top-5 program has a lot to do with you essays and "profile branding" and to a certain extent luck. I would encourage you to research further and have a few safe schools on hand.
Hi, Your profile looks good. However, something you can not change, your GPA, may be an obstacle at HBS. You do not come from a top undergrad school. If you can, you should try to increase your GMAT score to shun any doubts about your academic ability.
Another factor is your age. The top programs you are thinking about have some age preferences. Check out their class profiles. If you are too old, you should aim for the schools for which your age is less of an issue. I think Chicago does not care much about your age.
Besides very clear short term and long term goals, you also need to have solid extracurricular/community service activities. With not outside of work involvement on anything you will have a tough time portraying yourself as high energy, intellectually curious, well rounded applicant.
Your experience abroad sounds interesting. Wharton will probably like that. You should exploit your exposure to a foreign culture in your essays.
Re: MBA admissions to top 10 school
07 Apr 2010, 10:53