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Profile eval pls

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Joined: 23 Aug 2007
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Profile eval pls [#permalink] New post 23 Aug 2007, 16:05
Here we go:

28 years old, Asian-American male, living in SF Bay Area

GMAT-700 (Q46, V40) - Q - 80% , V - 90%. AWA - 5.5
First try - 670 Q49, V 32


Undergrad-BA liberal arts/Business Minor with a 3.3 GPA and a 3.5 (business class GPA) at UC Berkeley. I took almost all business courses to finish the major. I did not participate at all during school out side of class due to working 10-20 hours per week at various internships and part time jobs which I leveraged to get my 1st job.

After undergrad, took a large number of courses, probably 20-30 either to fulfill teaching cred, suppl teaching credential, learn new skills - all of these classes either As or Bs.
I took a number of math courses at a comm. college after graduating to become a math teacher, I received 3 Cs and 2 Bs - they were upper division / upper level calc & math courses.

Career Progression (chonological) (5.5 / 6 total years of exp)
-My first job was at in investment banking. Due to tech downturn in 2001, was laid off and pondered my career path. Decided to go into teaching, started substitute teaching/taking above mentioned math courses. Spent 1 yr here.

-My second job was working at two marketing firms (PT and FT) - Internet marketing analyst, two things learned/accomplished - analysis led to saving large dot-com 200-300k a year in ad spending, drove sales up 50%. Also initiated/implemented software to automate ad spending. This was a backup in case I wasn't able to get into teaching (which I had spent about 2 yrs working on already).

-My third job - teaching high school for 4 years. Taught at two diff. schools with differing socioeconomic status. Started two different business courses. Various achievements include community involvement, creating consulting projects for students, winning awards at Trade Show. Can also give some stats that show how I improve as teacher (student test scores improving/relative to mean?)

Community Activities-
-Volunteer manager for church small group for 3 years. Led groups of 10-20 volunteers on 10-20 projects at food banks/homeless shelters/delivering food.
-Board member of large local nonprofit - college fund for underpriviledged high school students. Led/execute initiatives to create online communities for our scholars. Worked in team to hire new managing consultant/executive director/determine strategy for ST /LT vision. Mentor to a scholar. Worked in team to plan large event.

Recommendations will be be from two former supervisors at schools I have worked at.

Why MBA, what will I do with it, and why now?
I want to get the MBA to become a nonprofit consultant, learn about nonprofits industry inside and out from strat to fin. to marketing, then work in philanthropy to eval grants and det. operational effectiveness. Why now? Feel like teaching has reached its potential in terms of where I can develop soft skills, want to have impact on larger groups of people.

Also, I am have a girlfriend also applying - her profile competitive as well, was wondering if we should apply together, benefits - pros/cons.



Potential Weaknesses-

Flighty? Coming from I-bank background, why teacher, why non-profit? I always had a service focus, but due to having to work to finance school, didnt really direct this focus into a career until post-undergrad. That's why I am a career switcher so many times.

Poor quant grades after school? 3 Cs on these hard math classes will make a big diff? They won't count on undergrad gpa.



Schools-
Wharton
Kellogg
Yale
Michigan
UCLA

Yale/Michigan both have strong nonprofit focus. Wharton is very comm. service minded. UCLA as backup, though def. wouldnt mind going there. My top choice and most realistic choice IMO is Michigan.

Questions for you

1. Assess my weaknesses. How will those impact me? Are they biggies or things I can explain with little harm? Any other ones?

2. Because of my irregular background, it's hard for me to point out specific accomplishments as a teacher, and it's also hard to demonstrate leadership / teamwork experience outside of the classroom. Any ideas here?

3. Thoughts on applying to same school as girlfriend, pros/cons / process of applying as couple

4. In my essays, how much detail should I go into reg. my exp working at an investment bank and marketing? Are they even relevant at all? I have written a number of essays, and all my ex. of leadership/teamwork/etc. are all coming from my comm service (board membership) and creating/teaching classes (teaching exp.)

5. Eval chances at schools.

Thank you so much for doing this.
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 [#permalink] New post 26 Aug 2007, 13:08
Phew. Lots of good questions... here goes.

1. Assess my weaknesses. How will those impact me? Are they biggies or things I can explain with little harm? Any other ones?

Yes, the job hopping does appear a bit flighty, but you explain it well. As long as you represent it as such (financial need then moved to real areas of interest) as well as outlines your career goals crisply (i.e., send the message that you have focus and aren't just a dilettante) and it should be fine.

The post-graduation Cs aren't great, but since it's not part of your core GPA aren't a show-stopper either. I wouldn't spend any time trying to explain these away unless asked.

2. Because of my irregular background, it's hard for me to point out specific accomplishments as a teacher, and it's also hard to demonstrate leadership / teamwork experience outside of the classroom. Any ideas here?

What do you mean you can't point to specific accomplishments as a teacher? I have a close friend who was a teacher before b-school it was apparent that although he might not launched a multi-millilion dollar product, he could point to the impact on and innovative measures he undertook to educate his students. That's the last time you should imply that and should spend some time detailing how and why you had an impact as a teacher or you'll have a tough time selling yourself. Don't worry about outside the classroom until you get inside nailed down.

3. Thoughts on applying to same school as girlfriend, pros/cons / process of applying as couple

I applied same time as my girlfriend (now wife). We applied to the same schools, but she ended up going to Michigan and I to HBS. If you both get into the same school(s) and both want to attend, then it can be a great experience. A lot of times the chips don't fall that way, so be prepared for that. You'll also have to be prepared for what you'll do if she wants to go to one school and you another. There will likely be some tension as responses come back in, etc. At the end of the day, there's your relationship and your career aspirations. Yes, there's overlap, but you should never make any decision today that we'll make you resent her or yourself tomorrow -- and vice versa from her perspective.

4. In my essays, how much detail should I go into reg. my exp working at an investment bank and marketing? Are they even relevant at all? I have written a number of essays, and all my ex. of leadership/teamwork/etc. are all coming from my comm service (board membership) and creating/teaching classes (teaching exp.)

Didn't you say you didn't have much outside of the classroom? Board membership seems relevant to me. Anyway, you might want to position yourself as a teacher who's passionate about non-profit (future goals), but who completely understands the relevance of the for-profit arena (see past experience). Thus, the majority of your app will focus on teaching and community service with a dash of the for-profit stuff. To more directly, answer your question it's okay if you don't feel like the banking / marketing stuff isn't as relevant. Don't force it.

5. Eval chances at schools.

I think you'd like Michigan. have you looked at Berkeley? I think you'll be competitive if you just take a quick confidence shower and nail down your teaching accomplishments.
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