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25 y/o European male, planning to apply 2014 or 2015.
GMAT: aiming at 720+ (assume 720) GPA: 2,92 (7.27/100) GPA is low but mostly because of full-time work during studies (sometimes 60-70hrs/week) in multiple Undergraduate degree in Business Administration & Strategy from leading b-school in the country (TOP 15% of class). Last year was tailored -in cooperation with professors- as an incubation program for the business that i've founded.
Work experience: -Family Business (Aquaculture, Plastics Manufacturing & more). Employs 140 people and grosses around 20,000,000. Has experience in several departments (from accounting to logistics, sales, marketing), currently working in Biz Dev.
-Co-founded Impact Hub in home city, an international network that supports social enterprises by providing Space, Content and Community. Secured funding for the venture and currently working on educational & capacity building programs with large international organisations. Already catalysed seed investment to 4 start-ups.
-3 years full time in AIESEC (the world's largest student organisation). Roles held include national VP CR & Member of AIESEC International Sales Force, based in Rotterdam, NL.
-Speaks 5 languages fluently (English, Spanish, German, Arabic & mother tongue) -Internship with Ashoka (leader in social innovation) in Argentina -Volunteer language teacher for immigrants (english & local tongue) -Community work in Uganda, Bolivia & Spain -Former U-18 National Ski Team Member
Why an MBA (roughly)? To provide me with the necessary resources to restructure the family business, while creating structures (networks, funds etc.), that support Social Innovation in my region.
I'm currently contemplating whether to apply in 2014 or wait another year, when I anticipate having more to show from my work with founding the Impact Hub, as well the family business.
I'd like to know what chances of getting into top schools i stand and shortlist schools where my profile is a good fit and I have good chances of admission.
Thanks for posting. Certainly you have a lot going for you, profile-wise: exposure to many facets of business; your own venture and all that is involved in that; vast international experiences; extracurricular activities.
The GPA is a weakness for you, but also schools will look at it on your own school/country's scale vs translating straight to US GPA, so that may help a little. Biggest opportunity right now is the GMAT! And essays since that is where you can really shine and highlight all of your experiences. Make sure you do hit that 700+ you are aiming for, and then with strong essays/application/interview, you COULD have a shot at most top schools. If the GMAT is not where you want it, then top 10 schools become much tougher to be considered at.
As for what schools to consider, there are so many factors to think about... geographic region (not sure you even mentioned US vs Europe?), class size, curriculum, teaching style, student culture, hiring profiles, specialties and strengths, etc.
In terms of timing, applying in 2014, does that mean asap, to begin this fall? If so, that would be very tough.... the later you get in the admissions season, the more places are already taken, and round 3 is very challenging. If you also think you'll have more strengths and experiences to discuss if you apply later in the year, AND it's getting late to pull it together for right now, I'd suggest waiting. You can still work on apps this summer and get great applications together to submit for R1 this fall, for example.
Good luck and keep us posted with questions and your progress! _________________
Regarding the geographic region, I am focusing primarily (or exclusively) on the U.S., since I believe that is where I have to be, in order to really have an impactfull experience and expand my knowledge, network & of course experience around social entrepreneurship, social innovation & impact investing.
Timewise, I am either applying for the class of 2017 or the class of 2018. My initial thought was to apply during this year for the class of 2017. However, I really feel I shouldn't rush into this, since I see this as a one-time shot. In any case though, I am definitely going for Round 1, either this year on the next.
On more thing I am considering, is applying for a summer "pre-mba" program in the U.S. this summer for two main reasons: One, to compensate for my relatively low GPA & show that, academically, I can cope and contribute to the programs I apply to & two, to get acquainted with university life in the U.S., generally get the "vibe". Of all the programs I've checked, the ones I consider applying to is the Summer Scholars Program at Booth & the Pre-MBA Leadership at Yale SOM. Not sure if there's any other program I should be looking into..
Lastly, when it come to specific MBAs, obviously with my profile & background, Stanford would be at the top of my list, even though I understand it's, a at least, a long shot. I'm generally looking for a program focused on Innovation, Global Impact & Entrepreneurship , flexible and more personal. I am a clear ENFP, so I guess it makes sense.. As to other schools I am considering, I think Booth, Tuck, Haas and maybe Yale & Anderson. But I'm really not sure, so any suggestions on that would be very much appreciated..
Thanks for the additional insight. Certainly your timing/planning ahead sounds good; the earlier you can plan ahead the better. Allows for more time for essays, for researching schools and possibly visiting, to ensure you maximize your work projects/accomplishments, etc. And any opportunity to visit schools, take course work, do the pre-MBA sessions will certainly help.
Re: geographic region, makes sense for the reasons you mentioned to focus on the US. Keep in mind that even within the US there is a lot of variety; for example life at Tuck will be more small-town focused, vs life at Booth in Chicago. Really just personal preference there. Though if you, say, KNEW you wanted to try to get internships or jobs in a specific city, you may want to be sure to apply to school/s in that city since it will be that much easier to network there and do local projects with local companies, apply for jobs etc. Not necessary but again if you KNEW you were interested in something specific. But I know you are overall looking to return to your family company.
Sounds like you've done some research on some good school options. Others you could look into might include Babson, Darden, Duke. But you have a good list as well. For more on choosing schools, you can also check out our free download at http://info.mbamission.com/Selecting-Yo ... ram-E-Book, and we create very in-depth 'Insider Guides' to specific top b-schools that have a lot of great info in them, in case useful.
Consider getting in touch with students or alum at a few of the schools you are interested in too, or ask the admissions office to put you in touch with someone if you don't know anyone (they are happy to).