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Profile Eval (thanks!)

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Current Student
User avatar
Joined: 26 May 2010
Posts: 693
Location: United States (MA)
Concentration: Strategy
Schools: MIT Sloan - Class of 2015
WE: Consulting (Mutual Funds and Brokerage)
Followers: 16

Kudos [?]: 192 [0], given: 625

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Profile Eval (thanks!) [#permalink] New post 07 Jul 2010, 20:38
Hello,

Firstly, I want to say thanks in advance for taking the time to critique my profile.

I am planning to apply next fall (2011) and would love to hear anything you have to say.

Age: 22 (24/25 at matriculation)
GPA: 3.88/4.00 overall, roughly 3.85/4.00 major GPA

-Only blemishes are:
-First two years, my GPA was about 3.97 and the last two years it was about 3.75-3.80
-Took maybe two-three classes in my minor as pass/fail
-The reason I have for both of these is that I worked full-time to support / pay for my education when during my last two years. Regarding the pass/fail classes, I felt that my workload was almost too much and that taking my minor classes pass/fail would allow me to concentrate more fully my major classes (which I hope is supported by my major GPA)

School/Major: UC Davis, BA Economics, Minor Anthropology, was a Regents Scholar (highest merit scholarship at school), completed incoming freshman honors program, received Department Citation in Economics
GMAT: 730 - 49Q (87%), 41V (91%), 6.0 AWA
Ethnicity/Gender: Caucasian Male

Career: Have spent the last year working as a fund accountant/administrator at a well-respected, large-cap Fortune 500 financial services firm. Assuming everything goes well, I will have 3 - 3.5 years of work experience at matriculation. I anticipate being promoted before I apply next fall and I'm also hoping to take a two to three month voluntary short-term assignment in another part of the country by then as well. If you can speak to how much either of those things would bolster my profile, please do so.

EC's: Admittedly, this is my weakest area. I didn't do much in UG, so I will be spending the next year doing meaningful volunteer work. Moreover, I believe I have lined up an opportunity which will lead to a leadership position in a volunteer capacity.

Future career path: I'm still unsure of this (and this is one of the reasons why I am not applying this fall), but I am considering the following specializations: Human Resources, Health Care Management, and Finance.

Target Schools: Obviously, I need to decide what I want to do before I decide on a few schools, but I have a preliminary list consisting of the following:

HBS, Booth, Wharton, GSB, Sloan, Kellogg, Columbia, Tuck, Haas, Cornell, Ross, Stern, Yale, Fuqua, Anderson, and Emory

If I had to narrow it down to six or seven right now (if you don't have time to evaluate my chances at all of the above), I'd probably go with:

HBS, Booth, Wharton, Haas, Anderson, Emory, and Ross


For what it's worth, my actual GMAT was lower than almost all of my practice tests and I think I could raise it to 750 or higher if necessary. As it stands now, though, I think the requisite study time would be better spent rounding out my profile (working hard towards getting promoted and doing meaningful volunteer work). If my thinking is off-base, please feel free to correct it.

Thanks for taking the time to evaluate my profile and please feel free to be as candid and forthcoming as possible.
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Joined: 22 Apr 2004
Posts: 1094
Location: Southern California
Schools: Kellogg MBA 2004
Followers: 32

Kudos [?]: 205 [0], given: 43

Re: Profile Eval (thanks!) [#permalink] New post 18 Jul 2010, 13:11
Expert's post
Hello,

Wow... That's quite a list of schools. Did you just start reading from the top down in the rankings? :-)

Seriously, you already know this, but you'll definitely need to narrow that list down to no more than 5 or 6 schools in order to make sure you're able to really put enough effort into each app. Even if you narrow it down to 5-6 schools, you may want to apply to 3 in the first round and 3 in the second round, just so that you're not spreading yourself too thin.

Having said that, I think you have the beginnings of a competitive profile. I don't think that the GPA stuff you mentioned will be seen as a weakness at all. You had a terrific GPA. And your GMAT score is just fine; don't waste your time/energy/money on taking it again. A 750 or 760 will NOT help you more than the score you have now.

The two biggest question marks I have about your candidacy are 1) your ECs, which you rightly highlighted as a potential weakness, and 2) your work experience. Sounds like you might just have a pretty mundane cubicle-tytpe job... There's no shame in that, but admissions officers will need to see evidence that you go beyond your job description, identify opportunities/challenges that no one else sees, and otherwise make an IMPACT beyond just showing up at 9 AM and leaving at 5 PM. Taking that new assignment may help you spread your wings and gain new experiences that will help there.

IF (emphasis on "if") you can show some real leadership potential, I think you could be competitive at a top-ten (or even a top-five) school, but you really need to make an impact on the job and in your community over the next couple of years. Fortunately, you're thinking about this stuff now, which puts you ahead of most other 22-year-olds!

BTW, this past year we got a UC Davis alum with some really spotty work experience full rides(!!!) to multiple top-20 schools, and got him into more than one school on your list. So, it can be done!

Scott
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Current Student
User avatar
Joined: 26 May 2010
Posts: 693
Location: United States (MA)
Concentration: Strategy
Schools: MIT Sloan - Class of 2015
WE: Consulting (Mutual Funds and Brokerage)
Followers: 16

Kudos [?]: 192 [0], given: 625

GMAT Tests User Premium Member
Re: Profile Eval (thanks!) [#permalink] New post 18 Jul 2010, 14:07
You hit the nail on the head! I am working now to narrow down that list of schools through careful research. I'm working on setting up some meaningful volunteer work, so I'm hoping that won't be an area of weakness once application time rolls around. Thanks for the R1/R2 recommendation; I will definitely keep that in mind. You are (mostly) correct about my job, however I have definitely gone above and beyond the typical responsibilities for my position and have accomplishments to show for it. I also have people who would definitely attest to my contributions. Would you mind PM'ing me more info about your consultancy services and maybe we can talk about how you would help my profile?
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