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Profile Eval Request - Low GMAT & applying in R3

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Profile Eval Request - Low GMAT & applying in R3 [#permalink] New post 18 Mar 2014, 21:53
Hi - I know I'm a little late in the game, but would appreciate if anyone could kindly review my profile and advise if I should still apply for UCLA Anderson R3 (for class of 2016) or wait till R1 in the coming fall for class of 2017.

GMAT - 1st attempt in Feb 2014 - 610 (Q36/V38); 2nd attempt in Mar 2014 - 640 (Q44/V34)
Undergrads and GPA - Top 25 US college with GPA 3.5; double majored in Business Administration (emphasis in Finance) and Accounting
Credentials - CPA in the US and completed level II of CFA exam
Extra-currculars - an active member at workplace who always organizes social events for colleagues; occassionally participate in different kind of volunteering events but not regularly for any specific organization
Work Experience in detail - Worked as auditor in a regional CPA firm in the US then moved to a Big 4 in HK; later moved to top investment banks and work as product compliance for institutional securities divisions (total work exp 6 yrs - 3 yrs in audit; 3 yrs in compliance)
Short term and long term goals - short term goal is for a career switch into marketing, with focus on brand management in consumer products industry
Preference of area to settle - west coast

I grew up in Asia (lived in two different countries in Asia) and later moved to the US (lived in three different US cities) for college and work. I started off my career as an auditor in the US and moved back to Asia and joined a Big 4. After 3 years of public accounting, I have decided to move into a Product Compliance role in a BB investment bank (HK office) where I could learn something different and be challenged professionally. My work progression has been good and recently been promoted to Vice President. My background is heavily focused in finance/accounting but I've always longed to work in a more creative environment and in an industry that is more relevant to people's day-to-day lives. While my work performance is highly regarded by supervisors and management but I do not see myself doing this forever. Hence the decision to go to a B-school for a career change.

I understand my GMAT score is below the 80th-range published on UCLA website but I'm still hoping I would stand a chance. I suppose what I could offer to the school are my international background and also experience in working at IBs.

I would appreciate any advice/suggestions. Thank you very much in advance.
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Re: Profile Eval Request - Low GMAT & applying in R3 [#permalink] New post 21 Mar 2014, 11:00
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Hi projectmba,

Thanks for your post. In regards to applying to the final round of UCLA, we normally do not recommend candidates apply in the final round. This isn't to say you will not be accepted, however all things being equal a candidate has a better chance in the 1st or 2nd round.

In regards to your GMAT score, we recommend that if a person believes they can improve their score by 30+ points, that they re-take the exam. The reason is that your highest score is self-reported on your application, so admissions teams will focus on your best score.

If you decide to take the test again, we provide free GMAT advice here: http://www.stacyblackman.com/test-prep-hub/

We also provide free 30 minute phone consultations here: http://www.stacyblackman.com/contact/

Cheers,
Conrad and the Stacy Blackman Team
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Re: Profile Eval Request - Low GMAT & applying in R3 [#permalink] New post 21 Mar 2014, 12:11
Hi projectmba,

I would suggest that you wait till next year if you can. Here is my rationale:

1) you raised your GMAT score 30 points in one month, and given the extra time you should be able to do better than you have on the GMAT

2) you will most likely pay sticker price for your Anderson MBA given that you are a final round applicant, if you wait till next year you should be able to compete for scholarships

3) the extra time will give you the chance to craft a better application

All that said, I wish you the best in your MBA journey!
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