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Re: Profile Evaluation [#permalink] New post 09 Feb 2012, 12:17
One last thing, since I do get this question frequently re: politics.

Don't be afraid to get involved in politically oriented orgs - it's not going to affect your application negatively. B-school is full of people of all views, both liberal and conservative (although admittedly the overwhelming majority of people in b-school are moderates or centrists - not really far left or far right) and adcoms will respect that. So long as you're not joining like the Nazi/Aryan orgs haha you're fine. There are folks who are involved in Zionist orgs, others who join Moveon.org (and other very liberal orgs), or folks who volunteer for Republican candidates. Or those who are involved in LGBT organizations, religious orgs, etc. What matters is you're involved in something you believe in.
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Re: Profile Evaluation [#permalink] New post 09 Feb 2012, 12:24
Thanks again. I am really pumped.
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Re: THE ELEPHANT IN THE ROOM: RACE AND PRESTIGE [#permalink] New post 11 Feb 2012, 04:36
It isn't different in basketball...

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.c ... D.DTL&ao=2
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Profile Evaluation - Reach, Match and Safety Schools [#permalink] New post 21 Feb 2012, 11:38
Hello, I'm planning on applying for fall of 2013, and am trying to figure out what I should consider a reach, a match, and a safety school. My plan is 1 or 2 reaches and 2-3 matches in EA/R1 and then a few safety schools in R2 if those dont work out.

Work History (At Matriculation)
4.0 years - Analyst IT Security - at a fortune 100 discount retailer. Lots of project management experience, but no management of people. Should be promoted to either Senior Analyst or Project Manager by the time I apply.
0.5 years - Marketing Analyst - Small internet startup
1.25 years - Marketing Analyst - Large international Bank

At each of my positions, although I have not had title changes, the role I was hired on for grew substantially. I have great stories from my current role. I was hired on to aid in a reporting process, and ended up revolutionizing the way we collect, report on, and manage data. Although I do not have anyone under me, I have trained many people on new tools and processes I've developed.

Gmat - 710 45q 42v

College - Graduated 2007 GPA 3.32 Major Marketing/Finance, In major GPA 3.78 - Small school in boston, ranked around 60 regionally. Has a respected business school for the area, but not well known outside of it.

Work/Extra-curricular in College

Worked full time while in school
2 years as a math tutor / Office assistant
2 years e-marketing manager/Assistant Innkeeper at an Inn (help raise sales substantially while there)
Was also a waiter throughout college... not sure if that should be added

Extra
4 years - active member in marketing and finance clubs,
2 years as a college radio DJ

Post College
Helped my fiancee launch a jewelry/photography business, this has taken up a good portion of my time... Not sure if I should include this in anywhere
Have done many events through the years with a local cancer institute (walks/fund-raisers)
Active in my alumni association
Successful Poker/Casino Craps player...

Nothing too impressive I know... I have time to do a bit more and will.


US White Male, will be 27 (almost 28) at matriculation


Post MBA Goal - As you can see in my work history, I started out trying to pursue a career within the quantitative side of marketing. Unfortunately, along the way I pigeonholed myself into a more analytical career within a function that I find a bit dry. I have a strong background in programming, database creation, data analysis, and project management. Although my quant abilities are strong, I have a passion for consumer behavior. My dream would be to work either in Market Research, or Brand Management in the northeast. I know I can write compelling essays about my vision on the uses of the growing amount of data within the consumer industry.
post mba career plan - Work for a CPG or High Tech as a brand manager, or for a retailer or vendor in marketing research. Marketing consulting is also on the table
Future Goal - Start my own database marketing research company, or move up the ladder.

My career will be a bit more focused in my applications, still ironing out the details. All I know is my passion is for consumer behavior and data analysis. I'll be happy as long as I can build a career around this.


Targets -

This list will shrink once I figure out where I rank

Kellogg
Booth
Duke (Fuqua)
NYU (Stern)
UVA (Darden)
Michigan (Ross)
Cornell (Johnson)
CMU (Tepper)
Indiana
Wisconsin
BC
BU

(although I like the curriculum at both Wisconsin and Indiana, I may not consider applying due to fear of not being able to get back to the east coast post mba)
Which do you feel are impossible, stretches, a good match, and safe?
Should I forget about Booth and Kellogg? (I'm thinking I needed to do a bit better on the gmat to have a shot)

Although I know what I'm passionate about, and I know I need an MBA to get where I want in my career (or atleast have an easier road there) I'm just having a tough time figuring out how strong my profile is.

Thank you so much for your time, I really appreciate it!
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Re: Profile Evaluation - Reach, Match and Safety Schools [#permalink] New post 21 Feb 2012, 17:14
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I think you're looking at the right range of schools. You have the kind of background that wouldn't be out of place at a lot of these schools (don't sell yourself too short here).

STRETCH: Kellogg, Booth
SWEET SPOT: Duke, NYU, Darden, Ross, Cornell
SAFETY: Tepper, Indiana, Wisconsin, BC, BU

Stretches are schools where your profile won't be out of place, but that there's way more people of a comparable caliber as yourself than there are spots (more often than not people of a comparable caliber as yourself and who put together strong applications would still get dinged - but there's still some who will be lucky enough to get in). Again, stretches are schools where you have enough of a chance that they're worth applying to 1-2 schools, and in your case Kellogg and Booth fall in that category.

Sweet spots are schools where you have a reasonable shot of getting in. By no means a guarantee (i.e you may not get into every school you apply to) but where you can be comfortable knowing you can get in somewhere. I'd focus on 3-4 from this list - and I'd recommend Ross, Duke and Darden for what you're looking for. NYU and Cornell are also great, but the other three tend to have more students with like-minded career interests as yourself.

Safeties are schools where you should be able to get in. Within your list, I'd stick to 0-1. Maybe look at Indiana or Wisconsin as both have good marketing programs.

So I'd recommend to narrow down your list to: Kellogg, Booth, Ross, Duke, Darden, Indiana, Wisconsin.
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Re: Profile Evaluation - Reach, Match and Safety Schools [#permalink] New post 21 Feb 2012, 17:20
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I would agree with everything that Alex mentioned.

Quote:
Successful Poker/Casino Craps player...


Also, I wouldn't mention this in your application. Successful poker player I could believe since this is a game of skill, but there is generally a bad wrap that gamblers get. I don't believe most schools would consider this very impressive, and may actually look down on it.

Also, there is no such thing as a successful Casino Craps Player. The game is not in your favor, and although you may get a lucky and win, the game is always against you. Being a stats guy myself, reading that made me laugh, no matter how much $ you are up on craps, it's a losing game.

Don't "gamble" with your application.
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Re: Profile Evaluation - Reach, Match and Safety Schools [#permalink] New post 21 Feb 2012, 18:24
AlexMBAApply wrote:
I think you're looking at the right range of schools. You have the kind of background that wouldn't be out of place at a lot of these schools (don't sell yourself too short here).

STRETCH: Kellogg, Booth
SWEET SPOT: Duke, NYU, Darden, Ross, Cornell
SAFETY: Tepper, Indiana, Wisconsin, BC, BU

Stretches are schools where your profile won't be out of place, but that there's way more people of a comparable caliber as yourself than there are spots (more often than not people of a comparable caliber as yourself and who put together strong applications would still get dinged - but there's still some who will be lucky enough to get in). Again, stretches are schools where you have enough of a chance that they're worth applying to 1-2 schools, and in your case Kellogg and Booth fall in that category.

Sweet spots are schools where you have a reasonable shot of getting in. By no means a guarantee (i.e you may not get into every school you apply to) but where you can be comfortable knowing you can get in somewhere. I'd focus on 3-4 from this list - and I'd recommend Ross, Duke and Darden for what you're looking for. NYU and Cornell are also great, but the other three tend to have more students with like-minded career interests as yourself.

Safeties are schools where you should be able to get in. Within your list, I'd stick to 0-1. Maybe look at Indiana or Wisconsin as both have good marketing programs.

So I'd recommend to narrow down your list to: Kellogg, Booth, Ross, Duke, Darden, Indiana, Wisconsin.



Thank you so much, seriously huge help!
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Re: Profile Evaluation - Reach, Match and Safety Schools [#permalink] New post 21 Feb 2012, 18:32
GMATLA wrote:
I would agree with everything that Alex mentioned.

Quote:
Successful Poker/Casino Craps player...


Also, I wouldn't mention this in your application. Successful poker player I could believe since this is a game of skill, but there is generally a bad wrap that gamblers get. I don't believe most schools would consider this very impressive, and may actually look down on it.

Also, there is no such thing as a successful Casino Craps Player. The game is not in your favor, and although you may get a lucky and win, the game is always against you. Being a stats guy myself, reading that made me laugh, no matter how much $ you are up on craps, it's a losing game.

Don't "gamble" with your application.


Ha, I agree about craps, (although if playing correctly, your odds are right around 99%) the only reason I mention poker is because I actually have a failed startup experience. I created a great database tool that aided in analyzing hands vs situations vs pot odds, but right around the time it was ready for release, the online poker industry crumbled....

Either way, agreed, I wasn't seriously thinking about adding either.

Thanks for your help though, it really is great to hear I'm not crazy for still wanting to apply to kellogg and booth
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Re: Building a profile for business school [#permalink] New post 20 Mar 2012, 13:07
Just joined the forum today, but that was a well written post. Thanks.
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Profile evaluation request - 720/Male/Entrepreneur [#permalink] New post 31 Mar 2012, 11:31
Hi Alex,
Thanks in advance for looking at my stats! I am shooting for a fall 2013 intake.

Indian Male, 33 Years old
Undergrad - B.E - Computer Tech (2nd Tier university) - 3.5 GPA
GMAT - 720 (48 Q, 41 V), 5.5 AWA
TOEFL - 118
IELTS - 8.5

Work Ex (11 Years)-
IT Consulting - 5 Years (3 years with IBM in US and Europe)
- Team leadership responsibilities

IT Management - 5 Years (With a top tier Hollywood Movie Studio. I was based out of L.A)
- Selected for management mentorship and promoted twice (next promotion would have been IT Director)
- Led several major organizational transformations
- People management responsibilities

Entrepreneur - Started a tech firm in London, UK in August 2011
- Focused on Supply Chain Tech consulting with client companies
- Developed a few websites and social media products
- Branching out into physical products (home automation)

Post MBA Goals -
Return to my business and build it into a boutique tech firm within the supply chain domain.

Target Schools (MBA) -
Stretch - Booth, Kellogg,
Target - Tuck, Columbia
Safety - Darden, Stern

Target (Non-MBA)
MIT Sloan Masters - At Stanford or MIT-Sloan

My concerns -
1) Age - I realize I am pushing beyond the top end of the range. Is there anything I can do to compensate for it?
2) Recommenders - As an entrepreneur, what are my choices? Customers, vendors, partners?
3) Am I being realistic about the schools and programs?
4) 720 is bang in the middle of the average GMAT scores for most of my schools. Do I need a higher GMAT to compensate for my age and 2nd tier undergrad and to improve my chances?

p.s - I loved your interview help videos!! They were brilliant!!
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Re: Profile evaluation request - 720/Male/Entrepreneur [#permalink] New post 01 Apr 2012, 22:49
So you just started a business less than a year ago, and want to close it down to go back to school? That makes no sense. Or it signals that you've given up on the business already. Or it wasn't much of a business to begin with that it was worth holding on to.

And so you want to close down your business so you can go back to school full-time, only to come back 2 years later to bring it back from hibernation? What kind of business is that? If I were an investor in your business, I would want my money back (and I would be pretty pissed if I heard that you wanted to go back to school), and would have serious doubts about your judgment and ability to lead a company. If you need to leave a business to spend a bunch of money to learn business, then as an investor I would find someone else to run the business in your place, and upon your graduation there may not be a spot for you in the company you founded. Not just investors (if there are any besides yourself). I mean, if I were a vendor or a customer, why on earth would I give you business if I knew that you were just going to leave for 2 years to go to school? How does that give the vendors or customers any faith in your business? And if you're expecting employees to run the day-to-day of your business while you're in school, what makes you think they will welcome you back as their boss once you graduate?

Sorry to be harsh, but if this is how investors, vendors, customers, and even employees in real life would see your decision, what makes you think adcoms would think otherwise?

To be honest, I think you should forgo the full-time MBA. If your business really has promise, focus on it solely. Bring in people to help you with areas you aren't as familiar with. And maybe later down the road should your business stabilize, consider going back to do an executive MBA, or take a la carte classes. As a business owner, the credential is useless for you - especially as you're only getting older, and as you get older, people care more about your experience and contacts (and not the 20-something "contacts" you make in school, but seasoned industry contacts you make in your industry/work).

Honestly, I don't think you have a real shot at any decent b-school at this point because adcoms will question your judgment - why you are going back full-time at this point in your career/life given the responsibilities you have.

And if the real reason is that you are indeed closing your business for good (and going to b-school to pursue something else), then it still begs the question why you never gave the business a fair chance (i.e. you need to give it a few years to see if it's going anywhere).

Again, if this business of yours has promise, you owe it to yourself to stick to it for a while before throwing in the towel so early. I know this is probably not what you wanted to hear or were expecting to get, but I think it's more important than the questions you asked (age, GMATs, rec letters, target schools, etc) because none of that will be relevant in light of what is really the issue: leaving a business you just started.
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Re: What Can I Do To Improve My Chances? [#permalink] New post 15 Apr 2012, 05:28
Very nice summary for all of us noobies on the site. Thanks!
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Re: Building a profile for business school [#permalink] New post 15 Apr 2012, 05:36
Second post I've read from you and this one absolutely nailed it (too)!!

A good summary of how many of us perceive education (degree vs. education and value).
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Profile evaluation: advice needed [#permalink] New post 28 Apr 2012, 12:15
Hi,

I would love to get answers to some questions which have been troubling me no end. First, my profile:

Age: 26
Nationality: Indian
Gender: Female

GMAT: 740

Education: Bachelors in engineering from a decent college in India. Good acads.

Work ex: 5 years at the time of matriculation (applying for fall 2013)
2 yrs of software development.
I started out as an independent consultant in May 2011 (overlapping with my job as an asst marketing manager), and with the addition of a co-founder who shares my vision and a few interns to help out, and over the due course of many sleepless nights, business has started picking up.

Goals: Scaling up my venture to impact organizations globally. I am also interested in non-profit consulting and would like to take it up in a bigger way. Looking to specialise in entrepreneurship and social enterprise while at b-school.

The questions which are absolutely killing me:
1. My target schools list for this year:
Kellogg, Fuqua, Ross, MIT Sloan (maybe), Cornell Johnson (again maybe), Yale
I would appreciate some opinions on my school selection as I think I am probably aiming a little too high.

2. I have an admit from the Indian Institute of Management Bangalore for their 2 year MBA program. While the program may be well-known in India, I am looking for a diverse class and a global network. Which is why I'm about to take a risk and decline the admit. Problem? I can't figure out for the life of me how good/bad my profile is! I'd love to hear honest feedback about how competitive my profile actually is.

Extremely sorry for the long post - I appreciate your patience. Thanks a lot in advance!

Last edited by radically on 29 Apr 2012, 10:27, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Profile evaluation: advice needed [#permalink] New post 29 Apr 2012, 08:22
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Biggest concern with you from an adcom's perspective is the combination of the fact that your work experience has been only in India and your rather non-traditional goals (non-profit).

So from their perspective, here's this Indian gal with no US experience, wanting to spend $150,000 to go into something non-traditional (and not known for being a high paying job) after b-school. Where are you going to get the money? Why are you spending all this money to do all this? From the looks of your jobs to date, you're getting paid presumably in local currency (i.e. much lower than what you'd get paid in the US for a comparable type of job), and you want to spend a crapload of money on an expensive US degree, just so you can go back to working for little money in a non-traditional job - in the US or India (either way it doesn't make sense: you'll have a hard time getting recruited for US-based non-profit type jobs even in consulting given your background, and if you go back to India to do this, you're back to being paid in local currency). Even if your family is wealthy with gobs of money, it still doesn't make much sense.

So the adcom either feels that you are completely uninformed about what b-school is all about (i.e. given your background they may feel that you're in for a huge culture shock), or that you're being disingenuous about your aims (i.e. you are saying non-profit do-gooder stuff because you think it makes for a good story, when in reality you do want to go to b-school to get the high paying traditional corporate jobs like everyone else).

Honestly I don't know either. If you really are focused on nonprofit, you may want to stay in India and take the IIM admit -- getting a nonprofit type of job in the US with your background is going to be tough. If you indeed are looking for a more traditional corporate route (i.e. you simply want to work/live in the US by working a decent business-oriented job at a company whether it's marketing, finance, consulting, etc.) then by all means apply to these US schools, but stick to career goals that make sense for the realities of what you'll be facing.
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Re: Profile evaluation: advice needed [#permalink] New post 30 Apr 2012, 12:09
Alex, as usual talks very smart things.

I am wondering man, how many people have you helped! Goood job!
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Re: Profile evaluation: advice needed [#permalink] New post 01 May 2012, 08:01
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Ha! A lot of people, a lot of people...
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Re: Building a profile for business school [#permalink] New post 05 May 2012, 11:27
Hi Alex, great read! definitely agree with a lot of your advice. Just one thing, I was wondering if you had any examples that exemplified the characteristics you wrote about? I know Steve Jobs and Bill Gates fit these criteria, but was hoping for people who were a little more down to earth in terms of stature :)
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Profile evaluation - Older applicant [#permalink] New post 19 May 2012, 14:55
Hello,

I’m an older applicant who wants to pursue a full time program and I desperately need a reality check.

Basics: 34-year-old Caucasian American male
GMAT: 760 (44V, 49Q, 5.5AWA)
Undergrad: 3.5 GPA from an average state school

Goal: Risk Management / CRO

Work: 8 years at a $12B regional community bank holding company with steady promotions and increased responsibility, 7 months interesting experience at a failed bank, and 3 years as a bank examiner (FDIC)

Community Service: Treasurer of neighborhood association, initiated annual volunteer day attended by 2 state / government regulatory agencies, AARP money management volunteer, Junior Achievement volunteer

Other: Marathon Runner

I’m shooting for top 16 schools (preferably Tuck or Cornell), but I understand that I’m an older average joe.

What’s realistic? What would be a good stretch school?

Any advice would be GREATLY appreciated. Thank you!
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Re: Profile evaluation - Older applicant [#permalink] New post 20 May 2012, 08:55
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To be honest, at your age, why don't you look at EMBA or part-time programs? What are you looking to do after b-school?
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Re: Profile evaluation - Older applicant   [#permalink] 20 May 2012, 08:55
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