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my chances at Insead, Wharton, MIT, HBS

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my chances at Insead, Wharton, MIT, HBS [#permalink] New post 24 Feb 2006, 10:57
Hello there,

I just bought your book (MBA game plan). It is awesome !! I am going throught the chapters.

my stats (33 years old, french vietnamese engineer living in the USA, GMAT 730 48q, 42v) .. got my diplome d'ingenieur (equivalent somehow to MSc) at age 22.

Why Mba: Passionated by entreneurship. I have strong and broad technical skills, a solid understand of the software life cycle .. want to get managerial skills and better understanding of how to run a business now.

Jobs: Sofware Engineer with 10 years of experience. Works at a Startup. will get strong recommendations from VP of engineering (who worked very close with me for 10 years). Got "above & beyond", "teamwork", "enthusiasm" awards at my company.

Passionated about many many things ...

Teamwork/Leadership: Competitive Bridge player. Founded a Bridge Club in College. Team won a France College Championship in 1994.

Community Service: Mentored asian immigrants children in Washington DC. Turns out that the lady who run the organization is the wife of a Wharton (and future Insead) professor.
Misc: Competitive Amateur Boxer. Took auto mechanics, german, japanese classes etc etc

My weaknesses:
i feel that i am good at my job but not excellent.
My oral skills are not great (shyness) but I always try to overcome that (volunteer for presentations, singing classes, will join toastmaster soon).
I am an older applicant.
I am not a great english writer.

Would you evaluate my profile?

thanks!

Last edited by ludwigvb on 01 Mar 2006, 07:26, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: 22 Apr 2004
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Location: Southern California
Schools: Kellogg MBA 2004
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 [#permalink] New post 28 Feb 2006, 17:42
Expert's post
Thanks for the kind words about the book! Sorry for taking so long to reply. Here are my top-level thoughts...

I don't think you placed too much emphasis on your extracurricular activities at all. These are key to helping yo uset yourself apart from other applicants. Things like putting your brother through school, starting a club, helping immigrants, and being an amateur boxer are all GREAT ways to differentiate yourself from the rest of the applicant pool, and to help break some of the science/engineering stereotypes that we discuss in Your MBA Game Plan.

Regarding your work experience, how good you are at being an engineer is less important than what you've accomplished on the job, whether you've led teams (it's not terrible if you haven't, but try to get this experience), how well you've coached and managed others, etc. Adcomms won't ask, "Is he a good engineer?" but they will ask "How did he make a real difference at his job?"

Your age won't be a huge liability, but you will want to think about he question of why you want an MBA now, and why you waited a long time (relative to others) to get it.

I don't think mentioning that professor's name will help very much. I have noticed that your written English could use some help. Consider getting help for your essays in this regard (maybe even just a native English-speaking friend).

Overall, I think your professional experience is average, but your extracurriculars can set you apart.

Re: timing, I see your logic, but I think it will be hard for you to put together a strong application for a school like INSEAD this year. Their last deadline for a Sep. '06 start is March 22. If you are willing to start at INSEAD in Jan. '07, though, then you can aim to apply by their May deadline.

Scott
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 [#permalink] New post 28 Feb 2006, 20:37
thanks a lot Scott.

Ok I should empathize on my work experience too ...
I got 3 promotions and my salary is almost reaching the 6 digits figure. I also work with the same people but 3 different companies. That team is always bringing me on board when they move to another company ...
Is it good enough?

also what do you feel about putting a alumni/professor name in an application? I want to show them that I did my research and interviewed people ..
I will probably use your services (website) to review my essays :-D

Thanks a lot

C.

Last edited by ludwigvb on 01 Mar 2006, 07:26, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: 22 Apr 2004
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Location: Southern California
Schools: Kellogg MBA 2004
Followers: 37

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 [#permalink] New post 01 Mar 2006, 06:15
Expert's post
The promotions are good, and it;'s clear that your managers value you, but have you led others? Have you led any big initiatives? This is the stuff that adcomms look for.

Definitely visit a school if yu're interested in it. If it feels like too much trouble, just remind your self of how competitive the applicant pool is. Mentioning that professor's name probably won't help all that much. It won't hurt, but don't expect it to make a big difference.

Scott
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Scott

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