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Trying to get into top b-school... what are my chances?

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Trying to get into top b-school... what are my chances? [#permalink] New post 05 May 2010, 10:51
Hello all,

I am graduating in a few weeks with a BBA and I am now focused on getting into a top business school (Harvard, Wharton, Sloan, etc)--I will be applying in a few years after get some work experience. I would like to know what my chances are and I think some of you could give me helpful feedback.

___________________________________________________________________________________
My Backgroud

School: Univ. of Texas, McCombs School of Business

Majors: Business Honors and Finance (for those not familiar with the Business Honors Program at McCombs, it is a very selective program--only top students can get in)

GPA: 3.97

Honors: Summa cum laude, Distinguished College Scholar

Relevant Work History: (1) Teaching Assistant at McCombs, (2) Structured Finance Intern at Big 4 , (3) Risk Management Analyst at a bulge bracket bank (I will be starting this position in a couple of months)

Volunteer/Leadership: This is the area in which I am lacking. I have some volunteer experience but didn't really take on any formal leadership roles in college. I am concerned this is really going to hurt my chances.

GMAT: I will be taking the test this year and I am confident I can get a 700+
____________________________________________________________________________________

Although I have a strong academic background, I am concerned that nothing differentiates me from other candidates. So, what are my chances? I know it's really hard to say, but any feedback would be appreciated!

Also, what are some things I could do in the next few years to increase my chances??

Thanks!
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Re: Trying to get into top b-school... what are my chances? [#permalink] New post 05 May 2010, 11:45
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You're dead on when you say it's really hard to say. You have no work experience. Is the risk management analyst job analytical or operational? Like do you determine risk measures (as in are you a credit analyst or, if you're in some buy-side role at the BB, VaR for a portfolio)? Or is it a job where you take data from an outside vendor, repackage it, and then give it to someone? That makes a huge difference.

If you can stay front office (which I consider a risk/credit analyst to be) at a BB for ~3-4 years and grab a 720+ on the GMAT you should be in good shape. You have time to volunteer in the next half-decade, so just find things you like and be a normal person. That's what schools want to see: someone that takes leadership but does it doing things they enjoy and take real interest in - not someone doing it to pad a resume. The difference is generally easy to spot.

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Boston College MBA '12

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Re: Trying to get into top b-school... what are my chances? [#permalink] New post 05 May 2010, 11:52
hypermeganet wrote:
You're dead on when you say it's really hard to say. You have no work experience. Is the risk management analyst job analytical or operational? Like do you determine risk measures (as in are you a credit analyst or, if you're in some buy-side role at the BB, VaR for a portfolio)? Or is it a job where you take data from an outside vendor, repackage it, and then give it to someone? That makes a huge difference.

If you can stay front office (which I consider a risk/credit analyst to be) at a BB for ~3-4 years and grab a 720+ on the GMAT you should be in good shape. You have time to volunteer in the next half-decade, so just find things you like and be a normal person. That's what schools want to see: someone that takes leadership but does it doing things they enjoy and take real interest in - not someone doing it to pad a resume. The difference is generally easy to spot.


It's a credit analyst position, so it's very analytical. From speaking to current analysts, it is legitimate work (nothing like ops). I plan on staying for two or three years, depending if I can land a private equity or hedge fund position after my second year.
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Re: Trying to get into top b-school... what are my chances? [#permalink] New post 05 May 2010, 19:55
Are you familiar with Jeffrey Chiang? Just follow that path and you're golden.

Seriously there are no secrets. Do well on the GMAT, get some good work exp, have a logical plan for what you want to do with an MBA (probably the most important of the 3) and you'll be fine.
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Re: Trying to get into top b-school... what are my chances? [#permalink] New post 05 May 2010, 20:09
merkin wrote:
Are you familiar with Jeffrey Chiang? Just follow that path and you're golden.

Seriously there are no secrets. Do well on the GMAT, get some good work exp, have a logical plan for what you want to do with an MBA (probably the most important of the 3) and you'll be fine.


Haha... yah, I'm familiar with Jeffrey Chiang--he was in BHP until the whole "Bank of Ameria" incident.

Anyways, when you say "have a logical plan for what you want to do with an MBA," you are talking about the type of job I want to get after my MBA? If so, I want to stick with Finance and hopefully will be able to land a private equity or hedge fund position.

Also, if my goal is to get a job in Houston, do you think I would be better off staying at McCombs for my MBA?
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Re: Trying to get into top b-school... what are my chances? [#permalink] New post 05 May 2010, 20:10
merkin wrote:
Are you familiar with Jeffrey Chiang? Just follow that path and you're golden.

Seriously there are no secrets. Do well on the GMAT, get some good work exp, have a logical plan for what you want to do with an MBA (probably the most important of the 3) and you'll be fine.


BTW, are you the same merkin from WSO????
Re: Trying to get into top b-school... what are my chances?   [#permalink] 05 May 2010, 20:10
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