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# Preparing for Fall 2010 Applications Thread

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SVP
Status: Burning mid-night oil....daily
Joined: 07 Nov 2008
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Schools: Yale SOM 2011 Alum, Kellogg, Booth, Tuck
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28 Mar 2009, 22:19

It's almost April. As a member of "Fall 2009 Bschool Applications" class, I think this is a good time to share with future members of "Fall 2010 Bschool Applications" class the following to-do checklist. After all, it would be a disaster to miss out on a key detail before the new applications come out.

In the next 4 months (from now to late July), you should complete the following tasks before starting your R1/ED applications:

1) Finish up your GMAT prep and take the GMAT exam (Don't wait till July)
This is crucial. You must take the exam and achieve your target score. If you keep on pushing off the actual exam, it might get too late. After all, if you do get a disappointing score - you might get a chance to take another GMAT exam if you have some time left.

2) Identify potential bschools and visit them
Many bschools like to see their applicants to visit their campus and interact/participate. This can be a crucial factor! Therefore, narrow down your list to few bschools and start visiting them. It's also a great way to get a feel of bschool culture and fit. Make sure you come up with a list of schools for the first round, and then the second or third round. After all, if you don't get into a top choice in R1, you might need to prep for R2 or R3 school applications.

3) Draw up a list of candidates for the recommendation letter
You need to contact people around you and ask them if they are interested in writing up your recommendation letters. Be careful. You need to come up with an early contingency plan if your top recommenders fail to come through in time for the application deadline.

4) Be prepared mentally that this can be a 2 year battle, not 1 year
Many qualified candidates fail to land a spot in bschool class every year. There's nothing wrong with this failure. Afterall, many bschools are favorable to re-applicants and in the meantime, you can strengthen your weaknesses. Just be prepared mentally that if you fail to get in this year to one of your top choices, it isn't the end of the world.

5) Read essay questions from previous year
If you want to apply to a specific bschool, it isn't a bad idea to read previous year's essay questions. Some questions repeat and you can shape up your essay early. Brainstorming early can help big! After all, communicating your goals, ideas, and reasons are key to potential interview invitations.

6) Check your resume (and other info that will be on your app) and make sure there's no mistake
Many admitted bschool students get introduced to "Kroll" verification process. Many bschools employ this agency to run student's background check. There are horror stories of admits getting their offers rescinded because they lied about themselves in the application (no matter how small). Make sure you correct any mistake, before submitting your info to the bschool.

7) Visit this forum often, and get to know fellow applicants.
They will be your best buddies in the next few months. You will get to share joy, disappointments, anxiety, and other emotions in this roller-coaster ride that you are about to take.

8) Reserve your vacation days. You will need them later
If you are lucky enough to get multiple interview invites (especially to the campus), then you will need to take off a day or two (or more) and go to bschool interviews.

9) Be aware that your work productivity will drop steeper than a waterfall
You will find yourself glued to this forum and other sites and F5 key will become your best friend.
If you are worried about your work productivity, make sure that you don't EVER enter Gclub chatroom. That place is addictive.

10) Finally, if you plan on sharing your experience in this forum, make sure you learn the forum rules and etiquette. Be respectful to other members. Don't be a tool.

11) Inform your family and friends that they will be seeing less of you (added - buffdaddy)

12) Soul searching (added - billyjeans)

13. Start saving some money now. Between GMAT Prep, Interviews, admitted students weekends, etc, you could easily spend over $5k. We have a poll on this forum somewhere to prove it. (added - domtri33) 14. Mentally prepare yourself for an emotional rollercoaster. Over the next few months, your mood will likely swing wildly between absolute confidence and complete doubt, between elation and dejection. Xanax helps. (added - Jerz) My list is incomplete. Other members are welcome to add any key points (from their personal experience) in this thread. _________________ Director Joined: 14 Oct 2007 Posts: 758 Location: Oxford Schools: Oxford'10 Followers: 14 Kudos [?]: 198 [0], given: 8 Re: Preparing for Fall 2010 Applications Thread [#permalink] ### Show Tags 29 Mar 2009, 15:00 11) Inform your family and friends that they will be seeing less of you Director Joined: 18 Feb 2008 Posts: 798 Followers: 21 Kudos [?]: 107 [0], given: 25 Re: Preparing for Fall 2010 Applications Thread [#permalink] ### Show Tags 29 Mar 2009, 21:55 12). soul searching Check, check, check... Good list.Thanks Current Student Joined: 09 Nov 2008 Posts: 216 Location: Evanston, IL Schools: Kellogg '11 (MMM) Followers: 1 Kudos [?]: 29 [0], given: 2 Re: Preparing for Fall 2010 Applications Thread [#permalink] ### Show Tags 30 Mar 2009, 04:52 13. Start saving some money now. Between GMAT Prep, Interviews, admitted students weekends, etc, you could easily spend over$5k. We have a poll on this forum somewhere to prove it.
VP
Joined: 09 Dec 2008
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30 Mar 2009, 05:01
14. Mentally prepare yourself for an emotional rollercoaster. Over the next few months, your mood will likely swing wildly between absolute confidence and complete doubt, between elation and dejection. Xanax helps.
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30 Mar 2009, 05:42
From our archives: Just to make this comprehensive, here is some advice for fall 08 applicants.

memo-to-all-those-applying-to-begin-fall-44024.html#p310572
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30 Mar 2009, 10:12
15) Take into account that getting waitlisted is very much a potential outcome when applying somewhere. For example, it would be easy to say "Oh even though Wharton's my first choice, I'll apply to CBS early decision. Since I'll know whether I got into Wharton by the time my CBS deposit is due, I'll be able to choose". Wait lists totally throw that logic in the crapper!

In summary, don't assume you'll know where you are going by a certain date.
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30 Mar 2009, 10:36
Bostonsparky, as a triple waitlister, I totally agree with your point. It's totally thrown off my timetable.

The other thing that really surprised me was the (in my opinion, ridiculous) levels b-schools go to in order to get "diversity." As a minority, I certainly appreciate diversity, but b-schools are a little too crazy about it, down to the seat level.

As someone who applied for different graduate programs in the past (PhDs), I assumed that b-schools also just took the "best" applicants as well, based on grades, test scores, recommendations, etc. But in b-schools, you are competing for one of the defined number of slots, based on any number of personal factors, whether that's job industry, geography, gender, race, nationality.

It is especially annoying for people on waitlists. Why the heck do these schools need waitlists of hundreds of ppl for what will probably amount to twenty (in the case of GSB) to maybe a few dozen (HBS, W) slots? It's because you're just needed to plug a hole in the case of a vacancy. So if an African-American in finance turns them down, they'll pull another one from the WL. In the end, you realize that unlike other grad programs, a lot of the b-school admissions process is really out of your control.
Re: Preparing for Fall 2010 Applications Thread   [#permalink] 30 Mar 2009, 10:36
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