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Hey guys, I'd like to introduce myself first. I am coming from a small European country of Montenegro. I played on a basketball scholarship in the US for Penn State University for two years. When i decided to commit more time to academics, i transfered to a smaller, private college called Mercyhurst College in Erie, PA. I graduated in finance with a GPA of 3.8 and 3 Dean's List awards and The Most Outstanding Student of Finance award. I am currently finishing my second and last year of graduate studies in Organizational Leadership, at Mercyhurst College, with the GPA of 3.9. I am taking the GMAT in December, and aiming for 640+ score. The rest of the resume is pretty decent, with good work experience. I will have pretty strong letters of recommendation from the head of graduate studies of Organizational Leadership at Mercyhurst College (PhD in accounting, CPA), professor of economics (PhD in Economics) and the assistant dean of business school (MBA). Finally, i believe my cover and motivational letters are pretty good and convincing. I am looking to apply to 5-7 PhD programs in the US and 5-10 in Europe. I am aware that my resume is not stunning so i am realistic in applying. I am looking at schools such as Pitt or Iowa. I don't want to try applying to Top 10 B schools. I would like to know which schools you think are decent but at the same time would be interested in offering fellowship to a student of my resume (i am ashamed to say that my qualities are better than my resume shows, but i realized my affection towards academics too late)? I would be the most interested in PhD in business administration, followed by finance and finally, accounting. I understand that demand for accounting PhDs is high and it may be easier to get a fellowship for that particular field, but i would like to try my luck with the other two more preferred fields as well.
Also, i forgot to list Finance GPA. Within my major, GPA was 3.98. Took classes such as Accounting I, Accounting II, Tax Accounting, Financial Management, MacroEconomics, MicroEconomics, International Economics, Financial Markets and Institutions, Managerial Accounting, Management, Marketing, Intermidiate MicroEconomics and scored an A on all of them but Tax Accounting (B+). _________________
Your GPA is great, but you graduated from a relatively unknown program, and brand name does play some role in admissions. If you wish to get into a PhD program in the top 50, you will probably want to aim for much higher than just a 640 GMAT score, as 700 is generally accepted as sort of a bare minimum, and 730+ is probably preferred. Many schools will place their official minimums lower than 700 but the reality is that these days admissions is extremely competitive, and unless you have some other things that greatly differentiate you (e.g. awesome work experience, LOR from famous professors, graduate of an Ivy League, etc) will have a hard time getting in with less than 700.
I don't know much about Pitt, but Iowa Tippie is actually a very decent program, and you will likely find it difficult to get accepted with your current profile, and nigh impossible with a GMAT score less than 650. You didn't mention if you have any work experience, as it is something that is preferred (though not absolutely necessary.. again they will evaluate you as a whole).
Another minor red flag that you have raised in your post is the fact that you say that you may be interested in a PhD in business administration, followed by finance and finally, accounting. This shows that you may not have put a lot of thought into the PhD yet. You should be able to communicate exactly why you are interested in a PhD, why you are interested in a specific discipline, what kind of research and research methodology you are interested in, etc. You are probably already aware of this, but the sole reason for obtaining a PhD in business is to conduct academic research.. not to teach at the University level... not to go into industry. If you communicate anything other than that, you would be hard pressed to receive acceptance into most programs. Also, I am sure that you are already aware that there are only 2-3 spots per year per institution and possibly hundreds of applications, so competition is very fierce at any of the top 50 schools.
Re: PhD Schools Suggestions
17 Jan 2011, 17:54