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Some school advice please.

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Intern
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Joined: 29 Nov 2010
Posts: 38
Schools: R2: Stern, Yale SOM, Wharton, Columbia, Tuck
WE 1: 3+ Engineer
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Kudos [?]: 8 [0], given: 6

Some school advice please. [#permalink] New post 04 Dec 2010, 14:15
Hi,

Could you please provide some advice for my b-school application process? It would be very much appreciated!

Age: 25 (26 at matriculation).

Ethnicity: White, U.S. Citizen.

Education: B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from a top 75 American liberal arts college that specializes in engineering (Patriot Leage).

Undergraduate GPA: 3.49

GMAT: 740 (Q46 V46) 4.5 AWA (AWA is anticipated score)

Work Experience: 3+ years working as a mechanical design engineer in the energy/manufacturing industry. Served one year as the lead project manager on a $50+ million project as well as serving as an assistant project manager on various other projects. Other responsibilities include performing complex engineering calculations and producing design drawings.

Extra Curriculars : Division I track athlete and team captain during undergraduate years. Currently a long distance runner and triathlete. Member of a fraternity while in college and served as this fraternity's vice president of community service.

Reason for MBA: This is my real story about my reasons for MBA, not necessarily what is going on my application. But, I'm not yet sure what I will be putting on my apps... Went to undergrad for engineering. Halfway through I decided it wasn't for me, but stuck it out b/c my school's engineering program has a much better rep than its business programs. Upon graduation I decided to give an engineering career at least a chance. After being at my company three years, I decided it was time for a career change. I've decided on an MBA with a finance concentration since I've always considered finance and the market hobbies of mine; however, I am still very much an amateur in these areas. This makes it difficult to state concrete 'goals' for my MBA. Also, an MBA will give me the ability to be an upper-level engineering manager if I decide finance isn't for me when I delve further into it. I know these aren't the best reasons and will need much refinement before being put on an application, but they are the truth.

Schools: I am considering the below list of schools to apply in Round 2 for Fall 2011 admissions (ranked in order of current preference). I have very strong ties to my family and friends in the the Philadelphia area and am looking specifically for schools that are within driving distance of Philadelphia (under 8 hours). I also have a very strong preference for Wharton for the same reasons.

1. Wharton
2T. Stern
2T. Columbia
4. Tuck
5. Sloan
6. Yale SOM
7. Fuqua
8. Darden

Questions:

1. I took the GMAT this morning and all of my time so far has been preparing for that, so I have yet to start applications. How many of applications should I send out for Round 2? And should I send any applications for Round 3? I know this is generally a big no no and I wouldn't be crushed if I have to settle for Fall '12 admission.

2. Coming from an engineering undergraduate background, I feel like my skills are better suited for the traditional method of MBA teaching as opposed to case study method. Knowing this, and my geographical preference, could you suggest schools so that I can narrow my applications to the number you answered for question 1? Are there any schools I am not looking at that would fit as well? I'm a little concerned that all of my schools are too similar, but want a top 20 school or bust. And can you evaluate my chances of success for being accepted to those schools?

3. I assume the answer to this will be no, but I'll ask anyway to ease my concerns... Should I think about retaking the GMAT to improve my Quant percentile (currently 75th)? On practice tests, I was able to score a 48 and 50 on the Quant section. However, the real test was the first time I've scored higher than 41 on Verbal, so I'm not confident I could replicate that. I'm hoping too that my engineering background will show AdCom that I have handle the Math.

Thanks!
PeeWee
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Re: Some school advice please. [#permalink] New post 06 Dec 2010, 21:52
peeweeherman wrote:
Hi,

Could you please provide some advice for my b-school application process? It would be very much appreciated!

Age: 25 (26 at matriculation).

Ethnicity: White, U.S. Citizen.

Education: B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from a top 75 American liberal arts college that specializes in engineering (Patriot Leage).

Undergraduate GPA: 3.49

GMAT: 740 (Q46 V46) 4.5 AWA (AWA is anticipated score)

Work Experience: 3+ years working as a mechanical design engineer in the energy/manufacturing industry. Served one year as the lead project manager on a $50+ million project as well as serving as an assistant project manager on various other projects. Other responsibilities include performing complex engineering calculations and producing design drawings.

Extra Curriculars : Division I track athlete and team captain during undergraduate years. Currently a long distance runner and triathlete. Member of a fraternity while in college and served as this fraternity's vice president of community service.

Reason for MBA: This is my real story about my reasons for MBA, not necessarily what is going on my application. But, I'm not yet sure what I will be putting on my apps... Went to undergrad for engineering. Halfway through I decided it wasn't for me, but stuck it out b/c my school's engineering program has a much better rep than its business programs. Upon graduation I decided to give an engineering career at least a chance. After being at my company three years, I decided it was time for a career change. I've decided on an MBA with a finance concentration since I've always considered finance and the market hobbies of mine; however, I am still very much an amateur in these areas. This makes it difficult to state concrete 'goals' for my MBA. Also, an MBA will give me the ability to be an upper-level engineering manager if I decide finance isn't for me when I delve further into it. I know these aren't the best reasons and will need much refinement before being put on an application, but they are the truth.

Schools: I am considering the below list of schools to apply in Round 2 for Fall 2011 admissions (ranked in order of current preference). I have very strong ties to my family and friends in the the Philadelphia area and am looking specifically for schools that are within driving distance of Philadelphia (under 8 hours). I also have a very strong preference for Wharton for the same reasons.

1. Wharton
2T. Stern
2T. Columbia
4. Tuck
5. Sloan
6. Yale SOM
7. Fuqua
8. Darden

Questions:

1. I took the GMAT this morning and all of my time so far has been preparing for that, so I have yet to start applications. How many of applications should I send out for Round 2? And should I send any applications for Round 3? I know this is generally a big no no and I wouldn't be crushed if I have to settle for Fall '12 admission.

2. Coming from an engineering undergraduate background, I feel like my skills are better suited for the traditional method of MBA teaching as opposed to case study method. Knowing this, and my geographical preference, could you suggest schools so that I can narrow my applications to the number you answered for question 1? Are there any schools I am not looking at that would fit as well? I'm a little concerned that all of my schools are too similar, but want a top 20 school or bust. And can you evaluate my chances of success for being accepted to those schools?

3. I assume the answer to this will be no, but I'll ask anyway to ease my concerns... Should I think about retaking the GMAT to improve my Quant percentile (currently 75th)? On practice tests, I was able to score a 48 and 50 on the Quant section. However, the real test was the first time I've scored higher than 41 on Verbal, so I'm not confident I could replicate that. I'm hoping too that my engineering background will show AdCom that I have handle the Math.

Thanks!
PeeWee


Congratulations on achieving a 740 GMAT score. However, I hope your AWA is better than anticipated - for a native English speaker, a 4.5 is on the low side.

1) Round 3 is an option for some of your schools, and you might use this round for your lower ranked schools. Generally speaking, if a school is favorable about re-applications, then you've got nothing to lose by submitting in R3 and taking your chances. Obviously that's not an option for MIT Sloan, so put that one in your January submit file.

2) If your learning style is not suited to the case study approach, then UVA-Darden is not a good fit.

3) It will be a challenge to complete applications for your targeted schools by the R2 deadlines, so with a 740 GMAT, your time will be better spent on your essays.

Your targeted schools are within your reach. The people at these programs do understand that your goals may change during the course of your studies but they want to see direction and how you connect the dots between what you've done in the past, an MBA and your goals for the future. It sounds as if a general management approach is best suited to your needs (e.g., Tuck).

A couple of other schools to consider in terms of geographic location would be UNC Kenan-Flagler or Maryland Smith or BU.
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