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profile eval for top tier schools

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profile eval for top tier schools [#permalink] New post 19 Oct 2010, 14:01
Would really appreciate a profile eval:

25 / male/ Chinese (US Citizen)

Undergrad: 3.95 GPA at Ivy League (heavy grade inflation), Econ/Math major
GMAT: 760

Work Experience:
1.3 years at a respected economic consulting firm (e.g. NERA / LECG / Analysis Group)
2.5 years as a developer in the renewable energy sector (helping develop solar energy projects)

Extracurriculars:
Some okay ones during undergrad, nothing special afterwards

Targets: (in order of preference)
Round 1:
Stanford / HBS / Haas

Round 2:
Wharton / Columbia / MIT

Round 3:
NYU

I've really gained an interest in the renewable energy sector and post-MBA i'm either going back into development (maybe a different power source such as wind or geothermal) or VC. I think I'm interested in VC more but I know I don't have the traditional ibd or start-up experience, however during my span in econ consulting I performed a lot of DCF/LBO/valuation models. If I can't get into VC then I'll probably go back into development.

Is my school selection too narrow? Should I add a safety in there? I know NYU shouldn't really count as a safety but I really think i stand a good chance at Haas given their emphasize on sustainable development.

Thanks!
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MBA Admissions Consulting
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Re: profile eval for top tier schools [#permalink] New post 20 Oct 2010, 17:02
Expert's post
Hi, thanks for reaching out. Are you applying this year or did you already apply to HBS? I would not apply to any school round 3, Stern or otherwise. There's little difference between Rd 1 and Rd 2, but the gap between 2 and 3 can be rather large.

Your existing experience in sustainability is huge. It sets you apart from the hundreds of applicants singing that song for long-term career goals without any evidence to suggest that it's a passion or a strength. So that is a big advantage for you. Your career goals need to be sorted out though. VC is nearly impossible. You have to make that a mid-stage play. You can go into Private Equity with your functional expertise and get investment-side experience that way. Then go back into development or operations with a portfolio company specializing in renewable energy. *Then* you can make the jump to VC with both investment and development experience.

The biggest thing for you is bringing this all to life. You have the grades (and who cares if they are inflated - its nearly a 4.0 from an Ivy League school) and the GMAT and also the work experience. But are you ready? Do you know what you want? Do you understand both the power and the limitations of an MBA? What makes you tick? Can you lead? Can you work well with others? Do you have the desire and personality (if not the track record) that suggest you will dive in and get involved?

Wharton and MIT, in particular, are going to test your ability to convey all this information in your essays.

Hope this helps.

Respectfully,

Paul Lanzillotti
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