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Pls help in researching schools

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Pls help in researching schools [#permalink] New post 24 Apr 2011, 21:21
Hi Alex

How many schools should be ideally applied in one round ? I am giving a brief description of my profile. Could you help me in categorising schools that would fall into the following criteria and also any other tips for the admission process:

- Stretch or dream schools
- Reach schools
- Safe bet schools

Nationality: Indian

Gender: Male
GMAT Score: 760 (v 44/q 49)

Work Ex:
1. 5 years in IBM as an IT consultant, providing technology solutions to my client at&t.
2. Currently a team lead of 7 members.
3. Have almost 2 years of international experience i.e in US.
4. Have won 4 awards in 5 years.

Career Goals: Want to a career in Consulting.

Undergraduate Degree: Mechanical Engineering in NIT Silchar, class of 2006

CPA : 8.5/10 i.e 8.5 in a scale of 10.

Leadership and Extra Curricular Activities:

1. Co founder of organization HOPES to educate underprivileged children during my college days. Unfortunately could not keep the organization alive after college days.

2. Currently a member of a similar organization .viz HELP.

3. Was the prefect in college hostel. Have organised events and provided internet facility in my hostel.
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Re: Pls help in researching schools [#permalink] New post 25 Apr 2011, 09:55
Apply to around 5-6 schools. Once you go beyond that, you'll end up diluting your efforts across too many applications.

Stretch: Haas, Duke, Darden, Michigan, NYU, Cornell, Yale, UCLA -- choose 1-2
Sweet spot: Tepper, Texas, USC, UNC, Georgetown, Indiana, Purdue, Maryland -- choose 3-4
Safety: schools outside the top 30 -- choose 0-1 (you should be able to get in no problem, but if you do, maybe choose the local school in your city rather than applying to a "safety" school where you'd have to pick up and move to a different part of the country)
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Re: Pls help in researching schools [#permalink] New post 25 Apr 2011, 10:20
AlexMBAApply wrote:
Apply to around 5-6 schools. Once you go beyond that, you'll end up diluting your efforts across too many applications.

Stretch: Haas, Duke, Darden, Michigan, NYU, Cornell, Yale, UCLA -- choose 1-2
Sweet spot: Tepper, Texas, USC, UNC, Georgetown, Indiana, Purdue, Maryland -- choose 3-4
Safety: schools outside the top 30 -- choose 0-1 (you should be able to get in no problem, but if you do, maybe choose the local school in your city rather than applying to a "safety" school where you'd have to pick up and move to a different part of the country)



Alex
Thanks for your reply. However it is sad to know that the top 10-20 schools are considered almost out-of reach. Is it because that I belong to an overrepresented pool of applicants i.e Indian IT Male? What can I do to pull in some more tier 1 schools to the "sweet spot" bag?
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Re: Pls help in researching schools [#permalink] New post 25 Apr 2011, 16:25
Put it this way.

10 guys can have virtually identical resumes. 5 of them will blend in, but the other 5 will manage to reveal themselves as individuals - even if they are talking about similar sorts of things as the 5 who blended in.

It's not just about the "facts" of your resume, but about YOU as an individual. Whether it's b-school admissions, job interviews, running your own biz (branding), etc. *HOW* you communicate and convey who you are is what matters.

And how you do that practically speaking is through trial and error. For some folks it comes a bit easier than others, but it's something you're going to have to find a way through a lot of writing and re-writing in the application essays until you're able to strip away as much artifice and bullsh*t and find a way to tell your story YOUR way.

It's analogous to dating in many ways (applicant = man; adcom = woman). You're amongst a sea of guys who on the surface are very similar to you, and you're trying to get the gal's attention. Unless you outright lie about yourself or get plastic surgery and change a bunch of things - the only thing you can go on is your narrative. How you speak to her, how you're able to get her to see you as an individual who is intriguing (because chances are she will reject you not because she doesn't like you, but because she simply can't tell you apart from the billion other guys who look like you).

The challenge is finding a way to convey who you are in an intriguing and compelling way, without resorting to cheap gimmicks - whether in admission or dating haha And there is no systematic way. How you do it is as individual as you.

In many ways, it's no different than what separates one admissions consultant from another I suppose. There's tons of companies out there. Some (many?) provide generic advice that sounds like a corporate robot. Others come across as a bit insane. Some are way too polite. Others can be a bit harsh. A lot of us at the core talk about a lot of the same kinds of themes, but some of us are better at distinguishing ourselves than others (in good ways and bad). And others will just create fake usernames to post gushing feedback about themselves :)
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Re: Pls help in researching schools [#permalink] New post 25 Apr 2011, 18:59
AlexMBAApply wrote:
Put it this way.

10 guys can have virtually identical resumes. 5 of them will blend in, but the other 5 will manage to reveal themselves as individuals - even if they are talking about similar sorts of things as the 5 who blended in.

It's not just about the "facts" of your resume, but about YOU as an individual. Whether it's b-school admissions, job interviews, running your own biz (branding), etc. *HOW* you communicate and convey who you are is what matters.

And how you do that practically speaking is through trial and error. For some folks it comes a bit easier than others, but it's something you're going to have to find a way through a lot of writing and re-writing in the application essays until you're able to strip away as much artifice and bullsh*t and find a way to tell your story YOUR way.

It's analogous to dating in many ways (applicant = man; adcom = woman). You're amongst a sea of guys who on the surface are very similar to you, and you're trying to get the gal's attention. Unless you outright lie about yourself or get plastic surgery and change a bunch of things - the only thing you can go on is your narrative. How you speak to her, how you're able to get her to see you as an individual who is intriguing (because chances are she will reject you not because she doesn't like you, but because she simply can't tell you apart from the billion other guys who look like you).

The challenge is finding a way to convey who you are in an intriguing and compelling way, without resorting to cheap gimmicks - whether in admission or dating haha And there is no systematic way. How you do it is as individual as you.

In many ways, it's no different than what separates one admissions consultant from another I suppose. There's tons of companies out there. Some (many?) provide generic advice that sounds like a corporate robot. Others come across as a bit insane. Some are way too polite. Others can be a bit harsh. A lot of us at the core talk about a lot of the same kinds of themes, but some of us are better at distinguishing ourselves than others (in good ways and bad). And others will just create fake usernames to post gushing feedback about themselves :)


Alex

thanks again...excellent metaphor and very practical piece of advice...but it is easier said than done...i will start working on my essays and see how I can win her heart :)
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Re: Pls help in researching schools [#permalink] New post 26 Apr 2011, 08:54
Yes, it is easier said than done. It's quite hard actually for any applicant -- and it's really a matter of trial-and-error, going through many rewrites, dead ends, and trying different ways to approach it until you discover what *feels* natural and effortless.
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Re: Pls help in researching schools   [#permalink] 26 Apr 2011, 08:54
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