Thanks for reaching out to me. I'm not sure what to tell you about your law school acceptance, but I've never met a lawyer that was really excited about their career. In fact, I have met quite a few who wanted to exit the business. One final thought on law school - can you defer for a year?
Now with respect to possible MBA plans, I can help you out there a little bit more. You can take the GMAT, but I really do not think that you need to. I have had plenty of applicants accepted with high GRE scores. Why roll the dice and take the GMAT – a completely different tests that you may or may not get a higher score on? It could be a boondoggle. Better yet, ask someone from the admissions committee about your predicament and see what they have to say. They should be rather straightforward about this type of question.
So your GPA is excellent, that of course is good news. I would not discount your work experience though. Really, what is the fundamental difference between what you're doing and what somebody else would be doing in some sort of "business"? You're still running project work, dealing with budgets, supervising people, sucking up to your boss, and putting out fires. All of this you do before lunch. Let's get real – this is the same type of activity that someone working at IBM, Bank of America, or General Motors would be doing. You just happen to work for a governmental entity – so perhaps there's more politics involved – but it's all the same shit. So you definitely have examples that you can write about for business school, and to be honest with you they are probably more interesting than what somebody from Deloitte or Accenture would have to say. I just hope to God they are not IT related projects – because everyone seems to have that kind of story!
With respect to any type of joint degree program, I would examine how competitive it is to get into one of these joint degree programs. If there are only a few spots, then you may want to just apply for the MBA. However, if you ask an admissions person may tell you that no one ever applies to such and such program, then that should be a green light to apply. However, with the HKS programs – you can bet your bottom dollar that they are competitive. You need to reach out to someone in the program already, set up a rapport and have a few phone conversations with them. It really is a different animal – from the biographical resume that they require, to their social mission.
Do all of the above and then report back to me!
I've only recently started considering for a rather drastic career transition (although honestly don't have much career to start with), and so far the forums have been greatly helpful. Please let me know what you think.
So here's where I stand.
-Graduated from UPenn UG (political science, Summa Cum)
-Have been working 2 years in foreign government (but has no "business-related" work experience)
-Initially wanted to go JD/MPP dual degree. Applied and recently been accepted to a CCN law school and Harvard Kennedy School MPP.
Although I was admitted to a top law school, I'm not really excited about the prospect of becoming a lawyer. I'm trying to make a transition to consulting and I'm thinking a MPP/MBA joint (concurrent degree) is perfect for what I want to do in the future (public sector-related consulting).
I have a fairly high oldGRE score (Q800, V780, AW4.5), and from what I know they are accepted in all the top MBA programs (ETS's GRE-GMAT conversion table says it's equivalent to 780 GMAT but I doubt it's that high). Should I still take GMAT?
To sum it up,
-Fairly high GPA but poli-sci major and no background in econ or business (reason being that I've only recently realized what I really wanted to do and that I need a econ/business degree to pursue it)
-Able to sell JD/MPP or MPP/MBA options to differentiate myself from classic applicant pool (which of the two do you think is better for raising my chances?)
-rather weak work experience (2 years in foreign government). Planning to gain some private sector experience (possibly in consulting) over the summer and fall.
-High GRE score (but still take GMAT?)
So given my situation what are my chances into H/S/W, Sloan or Tuck? These are the only schools that HKS has concurrent degrees with, and HBS and Sloan is my dream/first choice due to their closeness to HKS.
Please give me your realistic advice on how I should go about doing this. If my chances are reasonable I am willing to throw away a decent option of attending a top law school, and I do want to make the shift to MBA.