I needed some advice on my business school plans. I am currently doing well professionally and believe that an MBA in Strategy only from a top school in the U.S (maybe Europe) will significantly benefit me. My biggest fear is my undergrad GPA. It is about 2.7 in Industrial engineering at a Canadian University which isn’t that bad for engineering but it is under the 3.0 threshold.
A quick background about myself. I was born in Zambia but mostly raised in India. Moved to Canada on my own with no family/relatives/friends when I turned 18 for university. I worked to pay my way through school as an international student. I even became an independent sales rep for a major online retailer. I studied and networked enough in school to get prestigious coop internships and focused on graduating in 4 years. But I spent a lot of time working and getting involved with various student bodies and got elected for various positions in many organizations. I believed that this was important for a complete university experience. Working and extra curricular activities did affect my gpa but it mostly trends upwards. I interned at companies such as Siemens and Scholastic and upon graduation worked for one of the 3 American car makers for about 2 years. I currently work for the government as a national project lead with million dollar budgets among other things.
But to set me apart from the hundreds of other engineering applicants, what can I do?
I know I can get an 700+ score on the GMAT? Do I need a higher score such as 740+ to mitigate the effects of the 2.7 gpa?
I am also planning to sit for the CFA level I and II exams before I apply for b-schools.
I am currently volunteering at an AIDS foundation and am also enlisted as a reservist in the armed forces where I spend time on weekends.
I am currently studying for an Operations, Logistics and Production certification to expand my knowledge.
The plan is to write the GMAT spring next year and apply for b-school starting Fall 2013.
I am looking for absolutely any insight and advice on preparing and deciding on b-school. Your help is deeply appreciated. Thank you!
Regarding the GMAT
, just go in and get the highest GMAT you can. Aim for 800 and then deal with what you get.
The CFA certification and the engineering certification are all good. However, if those are not directly related to your long-term career goals, the best way to address a low GPA
is to earn a high one. Go take graded business related classes and earn A's in them. If you took them previously and did poorly, retake. If you haven't taken them yet, look into accounting, statistics for business, and econ. I'm sure you have had calc.
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