Joined: 27 Apr 2014
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What career change should I make to increase my chance? [#permalink]
01 May 2014, 09:18
I have been working for a mid-sized (~20,000 employees) IT consulting company for a bit over a year. I actually applied for various Financial Engineering programs last year and got admitted to Columbia University. I debated whether I should pursue this opportunity for weeks, but I decided that MBA will allow me to follow my dream in the long-run. I plan to apply for MBA schools in two to three years, but wanted to gauge where I stand currently. I want to improve my candidacy as much as possible to get into top 12, or even M7. My profile is shown below.
UGPA: 3.93/4.00, Top 5 engineering school, mechanical engineering, management minor
Graduate GPA: 3.55/4.00, same engineering school, mechanical engineering
GRE: Took the old GRE, 720/800/4.0 V/Q/AW
GMAT: Have not taken it yet, but I am aiming for 750+
Internship experience: Three summer internships at a top 10 Fortune 500 company. Each role was very different from one another (engineering, operation, IT).
Work experience: Have been working as an IT consultant for enterprise voice/business intelligence for a year. Mid-size IT consulting firm with 20k employees. Promoted once. Currently managing three people for the project.
Certification: CFA Level 1 Exam, FRM Level 1 Exam, Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate (MCSA): Server 2012
Language spoken: English/Korean, both fluently
Future goals (prior to MBA): I am debating if I should go work for a smaller software consulting firm to take more responsibilities and hopefully move up the ladder more quickly. I don't plan to move to a bigger consulting firm as of now, but I am open to suggestions.
Career goals: There are three possibilities. First option is to join a startup company. I like to learn business from bottom-up and grow a business at an exponential rate (hopefully). More details on why I would like to join a startup company is explained in Speical Note section below. Second option is to join management consulting. I am interested in giving strategic advice to various clients. Lastly, I am willing to join technology firms such as Google and Facebook.
EC: I like to tutor people. I used to serve as a teaching assistant for a long time (for 9 consecutive semesters) while in school. As of now, I am not doing anything in that sense, but I want to get involved in voluntary tutoring. Also, I have been involved in some leadership roles at church.
Hobbies: Nothing spectacular. Running, working out, reading, and writing. One thing I plan to do is finish a half marathon before I submit my application. This will be a significant achievement because I received an ACL reconstruction surgery one year ago. My injury was so severe that I could barely walk for first two months and I could not exercise at all for six months. I want to deliver positives messages that everything is possible with determination to those people who suffer from major injuries.
Special note: One of biggest personal accomplishments I had was losing 110 pounds of weight in less than a year. This required serious determination and I managed to maintain healthy weight for more than six years. I am looking for a way or an idea to share my stories and impact other people's lives in some way.
Stretch: H/S/W, Kellogg, Booth, Columbia, and maybe MIT
Target: Haas, Stern, Tuck, Darden
Besides these schools, I am open to suggestion for schools. In fact, I am joining an online conference on 5/14 to see which schools will be a good fit for my background.
Do I have any chance? What do I need to do to improve my candidacy? My main concern is that I do not have as solid work experience as other candidates do (a random IT consulting firm). Would I be better off by moving to a smaller consulting firm where I can have more impact or should I try to join a big consulting firm? I think Deloitte or Accenture is within the reach, but I am not sure how long it will take me to join either. I would sincerely appreciate your evaluation. Thank you so much.