The following is my profile:
I'm from South America.
29 years old.
Have enginering degree (mathematical engineering).
awards: schollarship in first year college for being 8th best applicant.
Ranked 8th out of 545 when I graduated (number 8 is a coincident).
When I finished college, I started masters in economics, but di not finish it. I thought I wanted to be in academics, but in the end I hated it...
When studying for the masters degree I worked part time for a professor (consulting project).
I did not finish that degree and started working in local investment bank (mutual funds division) as the first quant analyst hired for the job. Stayed there 2 years.
Now I work in hedge fund in the same holding company (can be interpreted as a promotion), with 2 more years of experience.
My current job includes being a quant analyst/risk officer/trader of a 70million USD fund.
My goal is to eventually start my own hedge fund, so I'm looking at programs that are big in finance.
I have very small amount of extracurricular activity: photography club (four years), volunteered on 2 ocations for building homes for poor people. Plus the usual sports (ski, soccer, squash, golf).
I don't know if there is a big downside on the fact that I have never been the boss of someone else. I now work w/ four other people and they have 12, 13, 20 and 25 years of experience in finance, and before I was the only one in the quantitative studies division. So my "leadership skills" are difficult to show in the workplace and also outside the workplace.
GMAT 740 (Q51 V38 AW4.5)
I already applyed to NYU, Columbia and Wharton all R2. Are they out of my league?
My dream school is Stanford. Should I apply in third round?
Thinking about Berkeley also.
Is my profile too typical?
Thank you very much.
Top schools do look at leadership experience, team work, exposure to managerial aspects (like resource management, scheduling, planning, tracking) et al. Unfortunately all professions aren't pre-designed to give candidates this level of variety.
Some candidates manage this by highlighting areas where they are really strong. For instance, if you had a weak GMAT score but fantastic grades throughout your academic life, then they may consider the GMAT score to be an anomaly and move on to other components of your application.
Your case is similar. There are a few things you could think about:
- Provide an explanation for the gaps in your profile (for instance, why you did not complete your Masters degree). If the regular set of essays doesn't permit you to fit this in, consider submitting an additional essay.
- Think about all the accomplishments at work and outside. What traits do they highlight? An eye for detail, a penchant for picking up difficult concepts, a flair for innovative yet practical ideas? I'm sure you'll find many things to talk about.
For the schools that you've listed, the entry barriers are very high. So I'd say it'll be good for you to have another set of schools for R3, where you will gain similar knowledge (but probably not the same brand value). You'll still build a network of professional contacts within the industry and potential partners who can help you launch your hedge fund.
Let me know if you need further help in your R3 journey.
Good luck with NYU, Columbia and Wharton.