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One of "those" threads, please give your opinion!

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One of "those" threads, please give your opinion! [#permalink] New post 10 Jun 2013, 17:58
Hi all,

I'm hoping for some general insight, maybe an assessment of my candidacy, really any comments you feel like giving.

*27 y/o white male
*710 GMAT (44q/42v)
*BSBA, Strayer University, 3.9 gpa
*5 yrs work experience (consumer products, retail management, financial services)
.. most recently 2.5 yrs as an Information Systems Analyst with a top 10 US consumer bank

Community involvement,
*Volunteering with my church youth group for ~ 1 yr.
*Stephen Minister in training (this is a lay extension of pastoral care, basically helping ppl who are experiencing hardships).
*As of last month, accepted a position as Upward League Manager ie coordinating a faith-based youth soccer league, including organizing coaches, balancing budget, etc (this is actually a paid position .. barely).

"Hurdles" that stand out in my mind:
*Weak undergrad school.
*Unfortunately, I have a DUI conviction from 5 years ago.
*Had a dry spell employment wise ~ 4 yrs ago, out of work for 6 months. I was an Analyst at Circuit City, well you all know what happened there. And times were tough in early '09 ..
*EDIT: Almost left out what may be the most important. Ages 18-19, 1.5 semesters, I attended VCU (local state school) as an undeclared undergrad. Left in 2005 on academic suspension with a 1.2ish gpa. What can I say, my priorities were elsewhere. Chronologically, this occurred before everything else in my application.

I love my current role "at the intersection of business and technology". I am passionate about using complex technologies to solve business problems. However, I think my technical skills have taken me to their limit. I want to move into strategy & leadership, but stay in the same or a similar field. Short term I could see a management role in IT consulting, long term dream CIO/CTO in the financial services/consumer banking industry (think JP Morgan, BOA, Wells Fargo, Cap1).

I am not interested in fulltime, as I am not able to leave my job or relocate due to family commitments. I am not really fit for EMBA either. So, I am looking at top 20 schools that have distance/online options.

Kenan-Flagler - This is probably my top choice. I like the platform and there is something electric, exciting about the program. My Dad is a UNC undergrad alum too so this would be a family tradition.
Tepper - Information Systems concentration fits me very well, and the school's general reputation for technology.
Kelley - I do like the dual degree options.

I am not holding my breath for fellowships, rather just praying for admits. So, money is definitely a factor. The only other thing I can think to mention, regarding recruitment, is that my options will be more limited due to not being able to leave the Richmond, VA area right now. Anyway, would love to hear everyone's thoughts on my profile and my school choices. Thanks!
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Re: One of "those" threads, please give your opinion! [#permalink] New post 11 Jun 2013, 12:16
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I'm not sure how adcom would view your story... Stats wise, you're solid. Work wise, you seem fine. (btw, I also had a 6mo employment gap 4 years ago, adcom will understand)

It seems like all of your missteps are pretty far in the past... I think you'll be fine. Also, online MBA admission seems to be a bit more lax.

Just to warn you though, adcom will see your past issues, I wouldn't ignore them, but wouldn't highlight them either. I'm not sure exactly how I would go about this though...
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Re: One of "those" threads, please give your opinion! [#permalink] New post 11 Jun 2013, 12:46
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Your gmat is fine, gpa is good. not sure what adcoms would make of for-profit education such as strayer. The 6 months unemployment isn't a big deal in my mind considering the company was floundering, and it was a while back. The vcu dropout might be the biggest ding but then again you are aiming for online programs which are less selective than full-time programs.

I'm kinda scratching my head to be honest. I don't really know how adcoms would view you. Though I'd say you've probably got a good shot just because you have good grades and a decent GMAT. It sounds like the VCU thing and DUI were a while ago, so maybe write a short optional essay just talking about how you went through a rough patch, but then focus on your growth. Just be brief on the negative aspects of your past. It's a tough balance, you can't really sweep them under the rug (like highwyre said, they will ask about those things on the application), but you also don't want to dwell on them or make it seem like you're full of excuses.

The point is to really focus on the positive aspects of your application and talk about what you are passionate about. Make the positive things what they remember. I'd say you have a good shot.
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Re: One of "those" threads, please give your opinion! [#permalink] New post 13 Jun 2013, 03:23
Thank you both for the feedback! You are not the first to tell me my VCU experience is my biggest problem. Which is surprising to me given how long ago it was, my young age, not to mention the fact that I have graduated from college since then with excellent grades. At any rate, would it make a big difference if I took 2 classes at VCU next semester (maybe accounting & finance), aced those, and came back to apply for MBAs afterward?
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Re: One of "those" threads, please give your opinion! [#permalink] New post 13 Jun 2013, 11:43
matogl0396 wrote:
Thank you both for the feedback! You are not the first to tell me my VCU experience is my biggest problem. Which is surprising to me given how long ago it was, my young age, not to mention the fact that I have graduated from college since then with excellent grades. At any rate, would it make a big difference if I took 2 classes at VCU next semester (maybe accounting & finance), aced those, and came back to apply for MBAs afterward?


no need to go back and take those classes. previous posters were just saying make sure to address those issues in your app and show that you've learned from them and point to your performance since. they weren't recent incidents and you've done a lot to rectify them. just make sure you address them briefly.
Re: One of "those" threads, please give your opinion!   [#permalink] 13 Jun 2013, 11:43
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