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Please Review My Profile and Tell Me What You Think!

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Manager
Manager
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Joined: 03 Jan 2013
Posts: 82
Location: United States
Concentration: Finance, Entrepreneurship
GMAT 1: 750 Q48 V46
GPA: 3.02
WE: Engineering (Other)
Followers: 0

Kudos [?]: 0 [0], given: 0

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Please Review My Profile and Tell Me What You Think! [#permalink] New post 15 Oct 2013, 10:52
So I think I posted a while ago about this but based on my recent activity I'd like some updated opinions. I'm just going to post my entire background, sorry if it's long!

26 year old male (will be 27 when I apply in Fall 2014). I'm currently an engineer and really want to get into private equity.

Prior to College
-I've been doing volunteer work since around 12 years old, when I started participating in an org to get a skatepark built, which succeeded when I was I believe 19 or 20. I worked with the city engineer and one other person to design what was actually built. I was active with this org the entire time.
-I did a variety of volunteer work, from being an assistant to a Village Board member to helping the local historical society relocate a log cabin and volunteering at a local dance held for people with mental disabilities

College Information
-Graduated from an average public university with a BS Civil Engineering and Economics in 2010
-3.0 GPA
-For a time was in the honors college and for the first 1-2 semesters was on the dean's honor roll
-Participated in a few non-political orgs but, aside from a regional engineering competition we did well in, not really to any meaningful extent
-Politically I was very active:
  • We founded our own student anti-war organization that gained popularity extremely fast
  • We organized a student contingent to a city-wide march that was bigger than the whole rest of the march
  • Staged one of the largest rallies in the university's history, at which I spoke
  • Held ongoing smaller events such as film showings and speakers
  • Via a different student org, were able to influence our city to establish a sister-city relationship with a South-American city and organized trips to the city
  • Worked closely with other student and non-student orgs to build coalitions around certain issues

After College Employment
-Worked in a call center, which required FINRA licensing (obtained Series 6 and 63)
-Worked in technical support for a small local software company, at which I was the best employee and obtained all certifications possible in the given software
-Been working for the past almost two years as a mechanical engineer at a small (~20 person) manufacturing firm:
  • Not in a leadership position but I have been very proactive in working on resolving business problems and taking initiative
  • Have been placed as project lead on a few projects, and am attempting to get more leadership roles
  • Working on improving our products to reduce manfacturing cost by 50%, which I believe will significantly improve our business prospects
  • Hoping to have a significant impact on top-line growth of the business between now and when I apply for b-school

After College Other Stuff
-Passed the CFA Level 1 exam
-I participated in an investment banking/private equity case competition, and made it to the finals. Planning on participating again this coming year.
-I took one high-level graduate finance course (received an A) and am planning on taking another in the Spring (and receiving another A, hopefully offsetting my 3.0 ugrad GPA)
-In a week I'm to be elected onto the board of directors of a non-profit organization that has about $1M in assets. I'd like to double our donor base in the next year.
-Myself and some friends have just started working on an ambitious project to start a non-profit gym in one of the lowest income sections of our city.

I haven't taken the GMAT but I'm aiming for 750.

1. Are two courses enough of an alternative transcript, especially if they're high level graduate courses in my target field?
2. I feel that my political organizing experience during ugrad helps explain my low GPA and also shows great leadership/organizational/teamwork skills, but I'm concerned how it would be viewed given its political nature. What do you guys think about that?
3. What do you think for HSW? For top 5 or 10?
4. What else could I do to improve my resume/application?
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Manager
Manager
avatar
Joined: 03 Jan 2013
Posts: 82
Location: United States
Concentration: Finance, Entrepreneurship
GMAT 1: 750 Q48 V46
GPA: 3.02
WE: Engineering (Other)
Followers: 0

Kudos [?]: 0 [0], given: 0

GMAT ToolKit User
Re: Please Review My Profile and Tell Me What You Think! [#permalink] New post 01 Nov 2013, 11:28
bump

anyone?
Manager
Manager
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Status: Admissions Consultant
Joined: 16 Jul 2012
Posts: 147
Location: United States
Followers: 0

Kudos [?]: 11 [0], given: 0

Re: Please Review My Profile and Tell Me What You Think! [#permalink] New post 05 Nov 2013, 18:29
You might have difficulty gaining acceptance to a top MBA school with private equity as your goal, but having no experience. Private equity is among the most selective career paths usually chosen by applicants with prior PE/VC or investment banking experience. If you have similar goals, your application will be piled in with the most competitive applications. It might be strategically more prudent for you to choose a career path aligned with your experience. Then apply to MBA schools that are strong in both finance and whatever you choose your career path to be.

So, assume you scored a 750 on the GMAT. You would be reaching into top 4-7 schools with a sweet spot of Top 8 – 15 schools.

Best of luck,
_________________

Michael Cohan
President
MBAPrepAdvantage
305-604-8178
http://www.mbaprepadvantage.com
http://www.mbaprepadvantage.com/blog
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Follow MBAPrepAdvantage on GMAT Club & https://twitter.com/mbaprepadv and Michael Cohan on https://plus.google.com/u/0/112394163312774253233
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MBAPrepAdvantage offers a free initial assessment to gauge your MBA admissions chances and the strength of your candidacy. Email us a brief description of your goals along with your target schools, resume, GPA, and GMAT score at info@mbaprepadvantage.com.

Manager
Manager
avatar
Joined: 03 Jan 2013
Posts: 82
Location: United States
Concentration: Finance, Entrepreneurship
GMAT 1: 750 Q48 V46
GPA: 3.02
WE: Engineering (Other)
Followers: 0

Kudos [?]: 0 [0], given: 0

GMAT ToolKit User
Re: Please Review My Profile and Tell Me What You Think! [#permalink] New post 08 Nov 2013, 13:02
Thanks for the response! I know that adcoms usually group people together with their "peer group" and choose from that given pile, but I thought the group was sorted based on where you're coming from, not what you want to go into. Am I wrong?

Quote:
So, assume you scored a 750 on the GMAT. You would be reaching into top 4-7 schools with a sweet spot of Top 8 – 15 schools.


I think my score is probably going to be 730, based on my GMATPrep exams. Why would 4-7 be a reach? And why would top 3 be out of reach?
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Re: Please Review My Profile and Tell Me What You Think! [#permalink] New post 10 Nov 2013, 10:14
Devon wrote:
So I think I posted a while ago about this but based on my recent activity I'd like some updated opinions. I'm just going to post my entire background, sorry if it's long!

26 year old male (will be 27 when I apply in Fall 2014). I'm currently an engineer and really want to get into private equity.

Prior to College
-I've been doing volunteer work since around 12 years old, when I started participating in an org to get a skatepark built, which succeeded when I was I believe 19 or 20. I worked with the city engineer and one other person to design what was actually built. I was active with this org the entire time.
-I did a variety of volunteer work, from being an assistant to a Village Board member to helping the local historical society relocate a log cabin and volunteering at a local dance held for people with mental disabilities

College Information
-Graduated from an average public university with a BS Civil Engineering and Economics in 2010
-3.0 GPA
-For a time was in the honors college and for the first 1-2 semesters was on the dean's honor roll
-Participated in a few non-political orgs but, aside from a regional engineering competition we did well in, not really to any meaningful extent
-Politically I was very active:
  • We founded our own student anti-war organization that gained popularity extremely fast
  • We organized a student contingent to a city-wide march that was bigger than the whole rest of the march
  • Staged one of the largest rallies in the university's history, at which I spoke
  • Held ongoing smaller events such as film showings and speakers
  • Via a different student org, were able to influence our city to establish a sister-city relationship with a South-American city and organized trips to the city
  • Worked closely with other student and non-student orgs to build coalitions around certain issues

After College Employment
-Worked in a call center, which required FINRA licensing (obtained Series 6 and 63)
-Worked in technical support for a small local software company, at which I was the best employee and obtained all certifications possible in the given software
-Been working for the past almost two years as a mechanical engineer at a small (~20 person) manufacturing firm:
  • Not in a leadership position but I have been very proactive in working on resolving business problems and taking initiative
  • Have been placed as project lead on a few projects, and am attempting to get more leadership roles
  • Working on improving our products to reduce manfacturing cost by 50%, which I believe will significantly improve our business prospects
  • Hoping to have a significant impact on top-line growth of the business between now and when I apply for b-school

After College Other Stuff
-Passed the CFA Level 1 exam
-I participated in an investment banking/private equity case competition, and made it to the finals. Planning on participating again this coming year.
-I took one high-level graduate finance course (received an A) and am planning on taking another in the Spring (and receiving another A, hopefully offsetting my 3.0 ugrad GPA)
-In a week I'm to be elected onto the board of directors of a non-profit organization that has about $1M in assets. I'd like to double our donor base in the next year.
-Myself and some friends have just started working on an ambitious project to start a non-profit gym in one of the lowest income sections of our city.

I haven't taken the GMAT but I'm aiming for 750.

1. Are two courses enough of an alternative transcript, especially if they're high level graduate courses in my target field?
2. I feel that my political organizing experience during ugrad helps explain my low GPA and also shows great leadership/organizational/teamwork skills, but I'm concerned how it would be viewed given its political nature. What do you guys think about that?
3. What do you think for HSW? For top 5 or 10?
4. What else could I do to improve my resume/application?


H/S/W -- forget it. You have a solid, middle-of-the-road profile, but you're up against too many folks with stronger resumes and pedigree than you who themselves have a hard enough time getting in.

Columbia, Booth, Kellogg, Sloan, Tuck, Haas -- stretch. You have enough of a shot that it's worth applying to 1-2 schools from this list. Again, it's not you - it's your competition.

Stern, Cornell, Yale, Duke, Darden, Ross, UCLA -- sweet spot. These are schools where you are more competitive for and where you'll likely end up. choose 3-4 from this list. If you're looking into finance, focus on Stern, Cornell, Yale.

Top 30 (USC, Texas, Tepper, Georgetown, etc) -- safety. Choose 1-2 from this list.

And this assumes that your GMAT is a 720+ (whether you get a 750 or not isn't going to impact your chances; it's about getting a score that is "good enough" -- a low score can keep you out, but a high score won't get you in).

And don't say you want to do private equity. Most adcoms will roll their eyes because whether it's true or not for you - they will assume it's just a pure money grab and nothing else. If you really want to do PE, you need to work in investment banking first for a few years.
_________________

Alex Chu
alex@mbaapply.com
http://www.mbaapply.com
Follow me on Facebook

Manager
Manager
avatar
Joined: 03 Jan 2013
Posts: 82
Location: United States
Concentration: Finance, Entrepreneurship
GMAT 1: 750 Q48 V46
GPA: 3.02
WE: Engineering (Other)
Followers: 0

Kudos [?]: 0 [0], given: 0

GMAT ToolKit User
Re: Please Review My Profile and Tell Me What You Think! [#permalink] New post 12 Nov 2013, 13:46
Quote:
H/S/W -- forget it. You have a solid, middle-of-the-road profile, but you're up against too many folks with stronger resumes and pedigree than you who themselves have a hard enough time getting in.


From what I've been reading, HBS adcoms (haven't read about other schools) look at the entirety of the admissions profile and not simply the name of the company you work for. Wouldn't the Bain PE guys all be competing against the other PE guys, anyways? And the Goldman bankers against other bankers?

Instead of saying that it's not possible, let's talk about what would make it possible. How about taking over the engineering department of this company as it grows 50%-100% in the next year and having one of my recommendation letters come from my company CEO? This is a real possibility.

Further, wouldn't getting on the board of a non profit with $1m in assets be a big deal? As would starting my own non-profit? Doesn't that show more initiative than someone that worked a couple years in IBD hell before being booted to go get their MBA?

Finally, I'm looking at getting more involved in the startup space around here. I'm actually moving more towards an entrepreneurial interest instead of just PE, which I think would allow me some flexibility on my admissions essay depending on where I'm at, and also look good if I'm starting something up and can make a case for b-school at HSW being a direct contributor to it.

I'm looking for every edge I can get, essentially. Thanks for the response, by the way.
Manager
Manager
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Status: Admissions Consultant
Joined: 16 Jul 2012
Posts: 147
Location: United States
Followers: 0

Kudos [?]: 11 [0], given: 0

Re: Please Review My Profile and Tell Me What You Think! [#permalink] New post 13 Nov 2013, 13:38
Devon,

I am answering your last two posts in the two paragraphs below.

Admissions committees compare candidates with similar backgrounds and candidates with similar goals to one another in an effort to create a diverse class. So, an admissions committee does not want to have too many applicants with similar backgrounds or similar goals.

Stating you have entrepreneurial goals would have you competing with other applicants who have entrepreneurial goals. Gaining relevant entrepreneurial experience or having tangible and feasible ideas for companies you wish to launch would help.

Good luck,
_________________

Michael Cohan
President
MBAPrepAdvantage
305-604-8178
http://www.mbaprepadvantage.com
http://www.mbaprepadvantage.com/blog
Give KUDOS! if a post helps you
Follow MBAPrepAdvantage on GMAT Club & https://twitter.com/mbaprepadv and Michael Cohan on https://plus.google.com/u/0/112394163312774253233
Like MBAPrepAdvantage on https://www.facebook.com/MBAPrepAdvantage

MBAPrepAdvantage offers a free initial assessment to gauge your MBA admissions chances and the strength of your candidacy. Email us a brief description of your goals along with your target schools, resume, GPA, and GMAT score at info@mbaprepadvantage.com.

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Re: Please Review My Profile and Tell Me What You Think! [#permalink] New post 13 Nov 2013, 14:02
Devon wrote:
Quote:
H/S/W -- forget it. You have a solid, middle-of-the-road profile, but you're up against too many folks with stronger resumes and pedigree than you who themselves have a hard enough time getting in.


From what I've been reading, HBS adcoms (haven't read about other schools) look at the entirety of the admissions profile and not simply the name of the company you work for. Wouldn't the Bain PE guys all be competing against the other PE guys, anyways? And the Goldman bankers against other bankers?

Instead of saying that it's not possible, let's talk about what would make it possible. How about taking over the engineering department of this company as it grows 50%-100% in the next year and having one of my recommendation letters come from my company CEO? This is a real possibility.

Further, wouldn't getting on the board of a non profit with $1m in assets be a big deal? As would starting my own non-profit? Doesn't that show more initiative than someone that worked a couple years in IBD hell before being booted to go get their MBA?

Finally, I'm looking at getting more involved in the startup space around here. I'm actually moving more towards an entrepreneurial interest instead of just PE, which I think would allow me some flexibility on my admissions essay depending on where I'm at, and also look good if I'm starting something up and can make a case for b-school at HSW being a direct contributor to it.

I'm looking for every edge I can get, essentially. Thanks for the response, by the way.


Again, you have a solid profile, but pedigree matters. Yes, the Goldman guys are competing against other finance folks, but they have a better chance of getting in.

There's nothing wrong with you and everything you are doing is notable - but you are underestimating your competition. The folks that are in "IBD hell" aren't exactly slouches either. I know most people hate hearing that they can't do something, or that their chances are slim to none -- so by all means, go ahead and apply if you really need to scratch that itch and if you prove me wrong, then so much the better for you.
_________________

Alex Chu
alex@mbaapply.com
http://www.mbaapply.com
Follow me on Facebook

Manager
Manager
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Joined: 03 Jan 2013
Posts: 82
Location: United States
Concentration: Finance, Entrepreneurship
GMAT 1: 750 Q48 V46
GPA: 3.02
WE: Engineering (Other)
Followers: 0

Kudos [?]: 0 [0], given: 0

GMAT ToolKit User
Re: Please Review My Profile and Tell Me What You Think! [#permalink] New post 16 Nov 2013, 13:39
Wow! Just sat for the test for the first time and got a 750 (Q48, V46). Soooooooooooooooo excited!
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Re: Please Review My Profile and Tell Me What You Think! [#permalink] New post 18 Nov 2013, 07:11
Congratulations!!!!
_________________

Michael Cohan
President
MBAPrepAdvantage
305-604-8178
http://www.mbaprepadvantage.com
http://www.mbaprepadvantage.com/blog
Give KUDOS! if a post helps you
Follow MBAPrepAdvantage on GMAT Club & https://twitter.com/mbaprepadv and Michael Cohan on https://plus.google.com/u/0/112394163312774253233
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MBAPrepAdvantage offers a free initial assessment to gauge your MBA admissions chances and the strength of your candidacy. Email us a brief description of your goals along with your target schools, resume, GPA, and GMAT score at info@mbaprepadvantage.com.

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Re: Please Review My Profile and Tell Me What You Think! [#permalink] New post 19 Nov 2013, 23:12
Expert's post
Devon wrote:
Wow! Just sat for the test for the first time and got a 750 (Q48, V46). Soooooooooooooooo excited!


WOW!

there's nothing else to say....
WOW!
_________________

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Re: Please Review My Profile and Tell Me What You Think!   [#permalink] 19 Nov 2013, 23:12
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