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Should I use my optional essay to....

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Should I use my optional essay to.... [#permalink] New post 12 Feb 2007, 06:23
Hello,

Do you think that it would be wise to explain my social-economic background in the optional essay. I have not done this anywhere else in the essays (applying to top ten school). I was brought up in the most deprived area in my country (in western Europe) and attended one of the worst school as a teenager(bottom 1% nationally). I still made it to graduating as a medical doctor.

I also want to explain my below avarage GMAT score 620, and say something to the extent that I don't mind retaking it.

Can I talk about these two areas in the optional essay. Or should I move explaining my deprived background to the first essay about short term goals, where it may make more impact at the beginning. And should I bother explaining my GMAT.

All help is appreciated.

Thanks
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 [#permalink] New post 13 Feb 2007, 18:22
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This sounds like an important patr of your life, so I would recommend integrating it more completely into your application, rather than relegating it to just the optional essay. But the optional essay probably is a good place to explain your GMAT score.

Scott
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thanks [#permalink] New post 16 Feb 2007, 05:30
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 [#permalink] New post 16 Feb 2007, 16:23
Paul, do I need to explain my low gmat of 620 in the optional essay. I'm applying to the ten top schools... verbal is above 80 percentile, but maths about 60 percentile.

I'm not planning to retake it unless the school asks. Should I just leave it alone or will adcom think I'm ignorant if I dont explain it.

Also what types of strategies do people use to explain a poor maths score. I'm a medical doctor, and have great essays and Letters of recomendation.
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 [#permalink] New post 16 Feb 2007, 17:10
sorry to address you as Paul -- mistake occured as I posted the same question in Paul's forum as well
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 [#permalink] New post 17 Feb 2007, 08:55
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> I'm not planning to retake it unless the school asks. Should I just leave
> it alone or will adcom think I'm ignorant if I dont explain it.

Ths is not a good strategy -- they're far more likely to reject you outright than to ask you to take it again. If you think it's a weakness, then try to take it again (if there's time). I can think of very few cases where a school liked someone so much despite their low score that they admitted them on the condition that they took the GMAT again.

If there's no time, then give it a nod in your optional essay, but don't give the adcomms a litany of excuses. Simply showing how your other academic credentials outweigh your low score should be enough.

Scott
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 [#permalink] New post 20 Feb 2007, 05:01
one more question please,

the day that i sat my gmat, the weather was extremeley poor and a tree had fallen down on the road of the test centre and so i had top take a major re-route. should i mention this as a contributing factor for the low gmat. even though i made it to the test centre on time.....i has stressed by it

thanks...

i want to mention it in the optional essay but think that the admissions committee may laugh.

what do you think

thanks.....your help appreciated
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 [#permalink] New post 20 Feb 2007, 05:25
to add i have a news paper article to prove that it did really happen.

thanks
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 [#permalink] New post 20 Feb 2007, 08:31
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This just sounds like you're making excuses (even if it really did happen). Put yourself in an admissions officer's shoes... They're likely to think, "If an MBA is really important to this person and hew knows his score is low, why won' the take the GMAT again?"

Scott
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