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Older Students' Experiences in Full Time 2 Year Programs

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Older Students' Experiences in Full Time 2 Year Programs [#permalink] New post 24 Jul 2012, 11:57
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Hi,

I am very familiar with most top MBA programs' bias again applicants who are 30+ in age. As a 35 year old applicant, I've been told time and time again that I have a slim chance of being accepted. I'm not even sure I want to do a regular two-year program. As such, I'm applying to a few two year programs and one or two EMBAs to give myself options.

I'm more interested in the actual experience that older students in two-year programs had. For those who are/were "older" in regular full-time programs, I'd like to hear about what your experience was like being with mid to late 20 year olds? Did you start to feel like the "old person" in class or when doing activities? Did you ever wish you were with more people your own age?

I'm definitely interested in getting this perspective if anyone has anything to share.

Thanks.
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Re: Older Students' Experiences in Full Time 2 Year Programs [#permalink] New post 25 Jul 2012, 11:25
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I am 32 and will be starting at Booth in September. I have already interacted with my classmates and incoming students at other schools a great deal. Thus far I would say that the age gap isn't that noticeable. You will meet a person here or there that makes you feel like, "Wow! You're young," but for the most part I think that being a working professional evens out the age differences in people in their 20s and 30s. Also, you will be surprised by the number of 30+ students in 2 year FT programs. It's not as uncommon as some would have you believe.
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Re: Older Students' Experiences in Full Time 2 Year Programs [#permalink] New post 27 Jul 2012, 00:26
Ward2012 wrote:
Hi,

I am very familiar with most top MBA programs' bias again applicants who are 30+ in age. As a 35 year old applicant, I've been told time and time again that I have a slim chance of being accepted. I'm not even sure I want to do a regular two-year program. As such, I'm applying to a few two year programs and one or two EMBAs to give myself options.

I'm more interested in the actual experience that older students in two-year programs had. For those who are/were "older" in regular full-time programs, I'd like to hear about what your experience was like being with mid to late 20 year olds? Did you start to feel like the "old person" in class or when doing activities? Did you ever wish you were with more people your own age?

I'm definitely interested in getting this perspective if anyone has anything to share.

Thanks.


Hi, I face a similar dilemma - m 36 and aspire to a global MBA (a second one) ... would like to hear about others experiences here.
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Re: Older Students' Experiences in Full Time 2 Year Programs [#permalink] New post 27 Jul 2012, 08:25
cheetarah1980 wrote:
I am 32 and will be starting at Booth in September. I have already interacted with my classmates and incoming students at other schools a great deal. Thus far I would say that the age gap isn't that noticeable. You will meet a person here or there that makes you feel like, "Wow! You're young," but for the most part I think that being a working professional evens out the age differences in people in their 20s and 30s. Also, you will be surprised by the number of 30+ students in 2 year FT programs. It's not as uncommon as some would have you believe.


Thanks for the info cheetarah
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Re: Older Students' Experiences in Full Time 2 Year Programs [#permalink] New post 28 Jul 2012, 13:03
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Hey there.

I was 35 when I entered Kelley, and now entering my 2nd year I'm 36. The mean and median age in my class is about 28 (maybe a year older than some programs?), and there are a couple of students older than me. We do have a slew of 24-26 students (most actually from India). I don't feel old at all during the process. I think part of it will depend on how involved you are. I'm not married, and even being an introvert, i've really tried on being one of the social organizers of our class and that has really helped. I am also a student-elected executive board member in our class and really try to help everyone become more engaged.

I feel like my experiences have really allowed me to get more out of both the in class and out of the class MBA activities.

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Tom

Ward2012 wrote:
Hi,

I am very familiar with most top MBA programs' bias again applicants who are 30+ in age. As a 35 year old applicant, I've been told time and time again that I have a slim chance of being accepted. I'm not even sure I want to do a regular two-year program. As such, I'm applying to a few two year programs and one or two EMBAs to give myself options.

I'm more interested in the actual experience that older students in two-year programs had. For those who are/were "older" in regular full-time programs, I'd like to hear about what your experience was like being with mid to late 20 year olds? Did you start to feel like the "old person" in class or when doing activities? Did you ever wish you were with more people your own age?

I'm definitely interested in getting this perspective if anyone has anything to share.

Thanks.
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Re: Older Students' Experiences in Full Time 2 Year Programs [#permalink] New post 19 Oct 2012, 13:08
Well being in 30s is one thing. Being an Asian, a IT guy makes the chances even slimmer. Just a thought.
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Re: Older Students' Experiences in Full Time 2 Year Programs [#permalink] New post 22 Mar 2013, 09:20
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Hi Ward,

I'm 33, not quite 35 but still up there. I recently got into Tepper at CMU, and had quite a few cards stacked against me (Theater undergrad, GPA wasn't great, 680 on GMAT, work history was definitely "untraditional"). I'd say that my saving grace was that I had a great story, and some nice extracurriculars. So I wouldn't necessarily count yourself out simply due to age. I know that was one of my major concerns in applying, but I got into nearly every school I applied to. Just shore up the positive aspects, don't fret about the negatives, make connections everwhere you can on campus ahead of time (current students, clubs, admins, alumni - LinkedIn is great resource for this). Learn everything you can about the program, what you love about it, and talk about it with as many people as possible (MBA conferences, campus visits, etc.) I know that this not only helped me out in my networking, but also really helped me to hone where I wanted to go and why.

BTW, I'm chronicling my GMAT studies, pre-matriculation woes, etc. in a blog in case you might be interested.

http://www.takingontepper.blogspot.com

Good LUCK!!!

Best,
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Re: Older Students' Experiences in Full Time 2 Year Programs [#permalink] New post 31 Mar 2013, 07:01
Thanks for the reply. I got waitlisted at four schools and was able to get feedback from all the schools. It was frustrating to hear from all my schools the same message: "there's nothing really wrong with your application, except we think the emba would be better for you." No school would ever outright say that age was the reason to deny admittance but that was the underlying message to me.

But hopefully something will work out for me.
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Re: Older Students' Experiences in Full Time 2 Year Programs [#permalink] New post 01 Apr 2013, 06:50
Ward2012 wrote:
Thanks for the reply. I got waitlisted at four schools and was able to get feedback from all the schools. It was frustrating to hear from all my schools the same message: "there's nothing really wrong with your application, except we think the emba would be better for you." No school would ever outright say that age was the reason to deny admittance but that was the underlying message to me.

But hopefully something will work out for me.



Hey Ward2012,

It may have had more to do with your approach on your essays and application than your actual age. Although I'm sure your age may have been part of the issue, it probably had to do with the way you presented your future goals along with your current place in life/career. An EMBA would be great if you are looking to stay within the same company but looking to advance within that company. My approach (I'm currently 35) is that I need a full time MBA program in order to change careers and move from a technical role into a business position.
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Re: Older Students' Experiences in Full Time 2 Year Programs [#permalink] New post 01 Apr 2013, 07:02
Electrichazard wrote:
Ward2012 wrote:
Thanks for the reply. I got waitlisted at four schools and was able to get feedback from all the schools. It was frustrating to hear from all my schools the same message: "there's nothing really wrong with your application, except we think the emba would be better for you." No school would ever outright say that age was the reason to deny admittance but that was the underlying message to me.

But hopefully something will work out for me.



Hey Ward2012,

It may have had more to do with your approach on your essays and application than your actual age. Although I'm sure your age may have been part of the issue, it probably had to do with the way you presented your future goals along with your current place in life/career. An EMBA would be great if you are looking to stay within the same company but looking to advance within that company. My approach (I'm currently 35) is that I need a full time MBA program in order to change careers and move from a technical role into a business position.


Thanks. I had the same message as well of changing from a technical role into a business position. I also expressed entrepreneurial goals in my essays.

I'm not saying it's impossible, and the fact that I got waitlisted shows that there's no automatic bias. but older candidates get more scrutiny and skepticism in my opinion.
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Re: Older Students' Experiences in Full Time 2 Year Programs [#permalink] New post 01 Apr 2013, 19:42
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On a side note, European schools are a lot more encouraging towards the older candidates. I have met a "current" student at Manchester Business School who was 36 at that time.
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Re: Older Students' Experiences in Full Time 2 Year Programs [#permalink] New post 02 Apr 2013, 12:00
I forgot that the other nugget of feedback I got from schools when I asked what I could do to improve my waitlist chances is that they want to make sure that older candidates will feel comfortable socially with everyone else in the class and not feel out of place or awkward.

So I discussed how I felt about this in my essays.
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Re: Older Students' Experiences in Full Time 2 Year Programs [#permalink] New post 02 Apr 2013, 12:22
Ward2012 wrote:
I forgot that the other nugget of feedback I got from schools when I asked what I could do to improve my waitlist chances is that they want to make sure that older candidates will feel comfortable socially with everyone else in the class and not feel out of place or awkward.

So I discussed how I felt about this in my essays.


Do you feel out of place in social situations involving people from the 25-30 age group?
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Re: Older Students' Experiences in Full Time 2 Year Programs [#permalink] New post 02 Apr 2013, 12:23
ISSOKireloaded wrote:
Ward2012 wrote:
I forgot that the other nugget of feedback I got from schools when I asked what I could do to improve my waitlist chances is that they want to make sure that older candidates will feel comfortable socially with everyone else in the class and not feel out of place or awkward.

So I discussed how I felt about this in my essays.


Do you feel out of place in social situations involving people from the 25-30 age group?


Nope. I have never felt that way.
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Re: Older Students' Experiences in Full Time 2 Year Programs [#permalink] New post 02 Apr 2013, 12:27
It seems strange that schools will see 30 something applicants as feeling out of place with people in their mid to late twenties on a social level.

I think (huge assumption here) it has more to do with how far gone you are in your career and whether your post MBA goals are realistic and attainable. They don't want people who are rocking up to B School to find themselves after being unhappy with how the last ten years of their career has gone.
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Re: Older Students' Experiences in Full Time 2 Year Programs [#permalink] New post 02 Apr 2013, 12:44
ISSOKireloaded wrote:
It seems strange that schools will see 30 something applicants as feeling out of place with people in their mid to late twenties on a social level.

I think (huge assumption here) it has more to do with how far gone you are in your career and whether your post MBA goals are realistic and attainable. They don't want people who are rocking up to B School to find themselves after being unhappy with how the last ten years of their career has gone.


To clarify, the admissions officer who gave me this feedback wasn't automatically jumping to the conclusion that 30-something mba students feel out of place. She was just saying she's seen it happen before with past "older" students who didn't gel well with the social aspects of business school. She gave me examples of past students who were 37, 38, etc and told me both those who did the clubs, parties, etc, and others who were more withdrawn.

I think older students with more work experience can either become mentors to others and be humble enough to learn from others, which is definitely my view or feel like they're superior and at a different level than their classmates. The latter is what business schools do not want.
Re: Older Students' Experiences in Full Time 2 Year Programs   [#permalink] 02 Apr 2013, 12:44
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