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Ask Alex @ MBA Apply

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Concentration: Marketing, Strategy
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Re: Ask Alex @ MBA Apply [#permalink] New post 08 Nov 2013, 12:31
Hi Alex:

Please help me evaluate my profile.e
Work experience: 4 years, of which 6 months in consulting (erstwhile Monitor) and rest in Test & Measurement B2B Sales (business development role with a revenue target)
GMAT: 750 (Q:50, V:41), AWA: 4, IR: 8, TOEFL: 112
Extra curricular: very active in the start-up circle: regular interactions with technology start-ups, guiding tech start-ups to break-even
Education: B.E. from a top-10 engineering institution in India (non IIT)...scholarship and diverse volunteer experience, CGPA aroung 3.6-3.7

My target schools are: Tuck, Kellogg, Duke, Cornell, Yale, Darden

A nagging query I have is: as a non-native speaker how do I mitigate this AWA score? should I give GMAT again? and whether this score is a deal-breaker at my target schools. This is a riding concern as I received a Fuqua ding earlier and have been evaluating/introspecting the reasons for that ding.

Your thoughts/insights would be really appreciated

thanks and regards
Ghorkalyug
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Re: Ask Alex @ MBA Apply [#permalink] New post 10 Nov 2013, 10:26
GhorKalyug wrote:
Hi Alex:

Please help me evaluate my profile.e
Work experience: 4 years, of which 6 months in consulting (erstwhile Monitor) and rest in Test & Measurement B2B Sales (business development role with a revenue target)
GMAT: 750 (Q:50, V:41), AWA: 4, IR: 8, TOEFL: 112
Extra curricular: very active in the start-up circle: regular interactions with technology start-ups, guiding tech start-ups to break-even
Education: B.E. from a top-10 engineering institution in India (non IIT)...scholarship and diverse volunteer experience, CGPA aroung 3.6-3.7

My target schools are: Tuck, Kellogg, Duke, Cornell, Yale, Darden

A nagging query I have is: as a non-native speaker how do I mitigate this AWA score? should I give GMAT again? and whether this score is a deal-breaker at my target schools. This is a riding concern as I received a Fuqua ding earlier and have been evaluating/introspecting the reasons for that ding.

Your thoughts/insights would be really appreciated

thanks and regards
Ghorkalyug


Your GMAT isn't the issue. Based on your writing style, I'm guessing that you're based in India (or that the majority of your interaction professionally is with Indians) -- keep in mind that the Indians who have more success getting into the top 16 schools are those who have already been working/living in the US for a number of years before applying to b-school. The prototypical profile is someone who came over the US right after college to do their MS, and then working in the US for a few years as an engineer or consultant. Top 16 schools like Fuqua aren't impossible, but they will be a stretch. Schools that are more in range for someone like you are top 30 schools like Texas, Tepper, USC, Emory, Georgetown, Indiana, Maryland, Purdue, UNC, and so forth.
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Re: Ask Alex @ MBA Apply [#permalink] New post 11 Nov 2013, 12:32
Hey Alex,

I have been exploring your website for the past few days and I am intrigued by some of the points you have made. I have a few questions for you and looking to see if your services would benefit me.

I would like be admitted to the class of the 2017 so I am starting to gather my application materials for next year.

I went to a top 10 public ivy and have a degree in Biology with a minor in Business and Community Health. I was pre-med but did a complete 180 junior year when I realized healthcare wasn't for me. My GPA ended up being not so great, it is a 3.01, for several reasons. I was very actively involved throughout college where I held leadership positions as well as coveted part time roles within the University.

I was recruited to be part of a rotational leadership program for an industry leader in transportation and logistics after graduating. I was there for 2+ years in supply chain/operational capacity. I realized the transportation industry is not for me, and also that I wanted to get into more strategic work. So currently I am a strategy and market pricing analyst for fortune 50 pharmacy retail company for the past few months.

I have taken the GRE and scored a 1390 but I am sure I can improve that score and potentially also take the GMAT.

While I was reading your blog, you emphasized taking extension courses if anyone's GPA was below a 3.1, which mine is. I would like to emphasize that most of my grades in business courses in Undergrad were A's or B's for the most part except finance where I got a C+ but had an A+ in statistics and Computing, and A's and B's in Organizational Behavior, Accounting, Marketing and so on.

I was thinking of taking a couple courses at the HEC(Harvard Extension School) potentially in Finance and Economics since I got a lower grade in those subjects and they would show my quantitative skills. Or would it be acceptable for me to take them a local community college/local university as well? Or should I be taking any courses at all?

I don't have hard core quantitative coursework in college because I took numerous AP exams in high school (calculus, chemistry...) so I had no need to take those in college.

I just wanted quick advice on what can I do to better my general chances of admission in the top 16, ideally Columbia/Stern/Wharton/HBS (which is a dream)

In terms of my career goals, I have a dichotomy between wanting to get into management consulting and/or brand management/marketing in the luxury goods market in NYC, which is at the forefront for both fields. Stern would be a great choice since they have a specialization in luxury goods as well as Columbia since it is in the hub of both the industries I am interested in.
I would love any feedback you have.
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Re: Ask Alex @ MBA Apply [#permalink] New post 12 Nov 2013, 10:34
mahika wrote:
Hey Alex,

I have been exploring your website for the past few days and I am intrigued by some of the points you have made. I have a few questions for you and looking to see if your services would benefit me.

I would like be admitted to the class of the 2017 so I am starting to gather my application materials for next year.

I went to a top 10 public ivy and have a degree in Biology with a minor in Business and Community Health. I was pre-med but did a complete 180 junior year when I realized healthcare wasn't for me. My GPA ended up being not so great, it is a 3.01, for several reasons. I was very actively involved throughout college where I held leadership positions as well as coveted part time roles within the University.

I was recruited to be part of a rotational leadership program for an industry leader in transportation and logistics after graduating. I was there for 2+ years in supply chain/operational capacity. I realized the transportation industry is not for me, and also that I wanted to get into more strategic work. So currently I am a strategy and market pricing analyst for fortune 50 pharmacy retail company for the past few months.

I have taken the GRE and scored a 1390 but I am sure I can improve that score and potentially also take the GMAT.

While I was reading your blog, you emphasized taking extension courses if anyone's GPA was below a 3.1, which mine is. I would like to emphasize that most of my grades in business courses in Undergrad were A's or B's for the most part except finance where I got a C+ but had an A+ in statistics and Computing, and A's and B's in Organizational Behavior, Accounting, Marketing and so on.

I was thinking of taking a couple courses at the HEC(Harvard Extension School) potentially in Finance and Economics since I got a lower grade in those subjects and they would show my quantitative skills. Or would it be acceptable for me to take them a local community college/local university as well? Or should I be taking any courses at all?

I don't have hard core quantitative coursework in college because I took numerous AP exams in high school (calculus, chemistry...) so I had no need to take those in college.

I just wanted quick advice on what can I do to better my general chances of admission in the top 16, ideally Columbia/Stern/Wharton/HBS (which is a dream)

In terms of my career goals, I have a dichotomy between wanting to get into management consulting and/or brand management/marketing in the luxury goods market in NYC, which is at the forefront for both fields. Stern would be a great choice since they have a specialization in luxury goods as well as Columbia since it is in the hub of both the industries I am interested in.
I would love any feedback you have.


Two things to focus on:

1. Crush the GMAT or GRE -- doesn't matter which one you take. Just make sure you get strong score. For the schools you're targeting, you need a 700+ GMAT or else your chances are likely to be slim. Make this your mission between now and next year.

2. Take a few extension classes. 2-3 is fine (no need for more than that). Doesn't have to be at Harvard - there is no prestige factor in these kinds of things. Taking it at your local community college is fine. 100-level (freshman/intro level) classes is all you need: calculus, algebra, statistics, microeconomics, finance, etc. Whichever you find the least boring (if that is possible haha).

These two things (GMAT and extension classes) aren't the most exciting thing in the world and frankly incredibly tedious for just about anyone - but it's essential. Good luck
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Profile Eval EWMBA - Male/Indian/32/GMAT 660/GPA 3.8/Exp 7yr [#permalink] New post 12 Nov 2013, 22:49
Thanks...

Last edited by saintforlife on 16 Feb 2014, 23:43, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Profile Eval EWMBA - Male/Indian/32/GMAT 660/GPA 3.8/Exp 7yr [#permalink] New post 13 Nov 2013, 14:07
saintforlife wrote:
Hi Alex,

I am looking at applying to the part-time MBA program at the Haas School of Business and was wondering if you could provide some feedback on my profile.

tl; dr / cliffs version:
• Male/Indian/32/GMAT 660/UG GPA 3.8/Grad school GPA 3.33
• Tons of extra curriculars
• Worked as mechanical engineer in oil industry for 4 years after grad school. After 4 years wanted a change of industries and found a job in a high-tech semiconductor company in CA and moved west. (Already had a background in semiconductor manufacturing from grad school)
• Current role has lots of exposure to finance related work. Enjoy finance side of things the most at work.
• Want to switch careers from engineering to Finance in the long term, by working in corporate finance division at current company (learn ops finance, P&L, GAAP principles) --> then after MBA work in a boutique investment bank or VC firm focusing on high-tech start-ups/companies (work on M&A, valuations, operations) --> eventually put myself in a position to become CFO of a tech startup in the Bay Area.


Thanks in advance for any feedback.


In short, the only thing standing in your way is the GMAT. With your current score, your chances are slim as the GMAT scores for these top part-time programs are approaching their full-time counterparts. Remember that with Haas given its location, there's going to be a LOT of tech/engineering folks applying to their part-time programs given the local economy in the Bay Area, so you'll be benchmarked against them, and simply put your GMAT will be a major handicap because there will be more than enough other folks of a comparable caliber/profile with stronger scores.

Retake the GMAT. Do whatever it takes to boost that score to at a minimum a 680, and ideally a 700+ for Haas part-time.
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Re: Ask Alex @ MBA Apply [#permalink] New post 13 Nov 2013, 14:44
Edit

Last edited by undecidedonmba on 29 Nov 2013, 14:15, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Ask Alex @ MBA Apply [#permalink] New post 13 Nov 2013, 22:47
Hi Alex,

Can you please provide your feedback on my profile?

Brief profile:
Indian
Mechanical engineer from Pune University
GMAT 700 (Q-49, V-35) AWA 4.5 IR 8
Total work experience: 6.5 years
2 years in engineering services in shipbuilding domain
2 years as a shipbuilding functional consultant in a PLM software development company
2.5 years in a wind turbine company as a mechanical design engineer working with cross functional and cross geographical teams.
International exp: 3 months in Germany
Key professional achievements:
• Developed a task duration framework to effectively estimate time for design related tasks which was implemented in the entire department.
• Prepared a Technical Depth assessment matrix for defining a clear career progression for engineers.
• Developed designs in several critical projects which had direct impact on the cost reduction of wind turbines.
Extracurricular:
• Passionate about running and endurance. Ran in several half marathons. Raised money, created awareness of various social causes through running events.
• Formed a local running group in community which has helped many runners.
• Actively pursuing sports, cycling. Participated in triathlon events.
• Travelled/ backpacked to many places in Western Europe and India.
• Rode more than 2.5k KM in the Himalayas on a motorbike.

Post MBA goal:
Work in a renewable energy (wind/ smart grid) company in a business development/ marketing role and later into corporate strategy. Seeking an MBA from a school with strong focus on general management.

This is brief snapshot of my profile.
Based on the above data can you please suggest me which schools I should apply to?
Kellogg MMM, Ross, UNC Kennan Flagler, McCombs, Duke, NUS, Mannheim.
I am applying in round-2. Given the fact that round-2 is more competitive, can you provide more insights into the school selection and can you suggest some other schools I should apply to?
I am more inclined to get into a school having a no cosigner loan program for international students.
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Re: Ask Alex @ MBA Apply [#permalink] New post 15 Nov 2013, 10:28
undecidedonmba wrote:
Alex,

I took my GMAT twice and I didn't score as I wanted. It is near the mid 600s which is the bottom of the 80% range of GMAT scores of my targeted school. I am not able to take it until mid next month so I will miss the R2 deadline for the school. Should I submit R2 app first and then let them know that I am in the process of making my GMAT score more competitive? What's the best approach in my current situation to not let a low GMAT score automatically ding me? I'm aiming for one school ranked 10-16.


Submit for R2, and write it in the optional that you're planning on retaking the GMAT. That's all you can do at this point.
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Re: Ask Alex @ MBA Apply [#permalink] New post 15 Nov 2013, 10:32
scarecrow wrote:
Hi Alex,

Can you please provide your feedback on my profile?

Brief profile:
Indian
Mechanical engineer from Pune University
GMAT 700 (Q-49, V-35) AWA 4.5 IR 8
Total work experience: 6.5 years
2 years in engineering services in shipbuilding domain
2 years as a shipbuilding functional consultant in a PLM software development company
2.5 years in a wind turbine company as a mechanical design engineer working with cross functional and cross geographical teams.
International exp: 3 months in Germany
Key professional achievements:
• Developed a task duration framework to effectively estimate time for design related tasks which was implemented in the entire department.
• Prepared a Technical Depth assessment matrix for defining a clear career progression for engineers.
• Developed designs in several critical projects which had direct impact on the cost reduction of wind turbines.
Extracurricular:
• Passionate about running and endurance. Ran in several half marathons. Raised money, created awareness of various social causes through running events.
• Formed a local running group in community which has helped many runners.
• Actively pursuing sports, cycling. Participated in triathlon events.
• Travelled/ backpacked to many places in Western Europe and India.
• Rode more than 2.5k KM in the Himalayas on a motorbike.

Post MBA goal:
Work in a renewable energy (wind/ smart grid) company in a business development/ marketing role and later into corporate strategy. Seeking an MBA from a school with strong focus on general management.

This is brief snapshot of my profile.
Based on the above data can you please suggest me which schools I should apply to?
Kellogg MMM, Ross, UNC Kennan Flagler, McCombs, Duke, NUS, Mannheim.
I am applying in round-2. Given the fact that round-2 is more competitive, can you provide more insights into the school selection and can you suggest some other schools I should apply to?
I am more inclined to get into a school having a no cosigner loan program for international students.


You're targeting the right range of schools. Top 8 schools like Kellogg are stretches but where you have enough of a shot that it's worth applying to at least 1 school. Top 16 schools like Ross and Duke are sweet spots where you have a reasonable shot of getting into (maybe add another school here like Darden). Schools outside the top 16 like UNC, Texas, NUS, Mannheim, etc are safeties where you should have no problems getting into -- I don't think you need to apply to so many safeties; maybe 1-2 at most (focus on UNC and Texas since you're looking into staying in the energy sector).

Again, your list is fine. Just focus on putting together strong applications and you should be able to get into a few of the schools on your list. Good luck
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Re: Ask Alex @ MBA Apply [#permalink] New post 15 Nov 2013, 12:04
Hey there ,

Following is my profile . I am a 26year old Indian male .
-Did my B.com(accounting and finance) from University of Madras .
- Have a NCFM certificate in Fundamental Analysis and Financial markets issued by National Stock exchange (NSE)
-GMAT - 700

-worked at a shared service centre of mckinsey&co for 7months .
where for 3months I was the point of contact for their oracle r12 testing .

- after that I left cause I thought i was not really learing anything of use other than MSexcel .
So I joined my dad in his business (small iron sheets trading business and an agency) ; we were able to increase our turnover by 5% from the previous year and we were able to bring in 3 new clients in our agency . Worked for 1.2years and left cause of family problems .

- Then joined a small PE firm as a Research Analyst . Worked there for 3years . Was promoted to Senior Research analyst during my second year . Basically my job is to look at PE firms activities , M&A activities and analyse them and produce reports (rather help produce reports)

Extra-Curricular :
- volunteer at a charitable trust for 2.5years .
- published papers on stock market in a few journals.

Goals:
- I intend to get into investment banking for the short term (5-10years)
- intend to have my own venture capital firm (10+years)


It would be very helpful if you could evaluate my profie and let me know if my profile is apt for the following programs :
1. Warwick Business school
2. ISB
3. Oxford
4. Cambridge .



Thanking and Regards,
Raj
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Re: Ask Alex @ MBA Apply [#permalink] New post 16 Nov 2013, 03:10
> Hello. I'd like an honest assessment of my profile and chances of getting into below mentioned schools.
>
> Preferred Schools
> 1)Harvard
> 2)Stanford
> 3)Wharton
> 4) Chicago Booth.
> 5) MIT Sloan
> 6)Kellogg
> 7) Yale
> 8)Columbia

>
> Safety Schools
> 1) UTexas McCombs
> 2)Darden
> 3)Stern
> 4) Mendoza
> 5) Carlson
> 6) Ross
>
> Detailed Profile
>
> Introduction.
> My name is Salman Qasim and I was born and raised in Pakistan. I did my Bachelor's from UK and am also a member of Association of Chartered Certified Accountants of the UK. I have also cleared the Certified Financial Analyst Exams and have Certificate in Quantitative Finance provided by the Fitch Group. I also have the Financial Risk Manager and Professional Risk Manager credentials. I also have been involved in various extra-curricular activities.
>
> Achievements.
>
> 1)Bachelor's of Science in Applied Accounting awarded by Oxford Brookes University of UK in First Class Honours(US 3.6 GPA as per iGPA calculator of World Education Services)
> 2)Have a two Certificates of Merit awarded by Association of Chartered Certified Accountants for achieving highest marks worldwide in two of the exams.
> 3)Awarded Simpson Scholarship by ACCA on the basis of brilliantly written essays and strong academic history. 6000 applied out of which, 20 were short-listed for the scholarship. Among the 5 winners, I was the one.
> 4)Awarded Bronze medal by ACCA for achieving highest aggregate marks in ACCA exams in the year I graduated.
> 5) Have worked for PricewaterhouseCoopers, one of the big 4 accountancy firm, as an Audit Assistant and recently was promoted.
> 6) Have 750 GMAT score.
> 7) Volunteered for non-profit organization, Community Development Rural Program, which was established by my brother to work for the development of lifestyle in troubled tribal areas of Pakistan and awareness and promotin education. We established more than 5 mobile schools for the children in tribal areas and still working on it.
> 8) Was awarded a Candidate of the Year award by Professional Risk Management Association.
> 9) Completion of Higher Diploma in Accounting accredited by Scottish Qualifications Authority in shortest possible time.
> 10) Devoted to continuing professional education and has several Coursera Verified Certificates with distinction.
> 11) Have played cricket for my college internationally and was a class representative.
>
>
> Experience: 3 years in Audit and Consulting, I performed financial statement audits of companies that carried significant assets and liabilities subject to fair value accounting. I assessed the reasonableness of the valuations and assumptions behind the valuations of those assets and liabilities.
> Age: 24
> Nationality: Pakistan

Also, I'm considering Master in Finance program of Princeton University so please also assess that
>
>
>
>
> So that was a some information about my background. Will please evaluate and determine whether I have chances in any of the aforementioned schools? I am looking forward to hear from you. Thanks
>
> Kind Regards
> Salman Qasim(BSc,ACCA,CFA,FRM,CQF,PRM)
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Ask Alex @ MBA Apply [#permalink] New post 17 Nov 2013, 01:27
Hi Alex,

I'm Asha from India.
I completed my MBA (majored in Marketing) from a top-10 (non-IIM) B-School in India in 2008. I've been working as a consultant with PwC India in their Performance Improvement practice since then.

In short, I have 5.5yrs of consulting experience and am keen on an MBA in the US/Europe (Fall 2014 intake). I hold a 650 on the GMAT.
My goal is to move into brand management and am considering the following schools (in no particular order):

1. Fuqua
2. INSEAD (Fountainbleau)
3. Columbia
4. Haas
5. SDA Bocconi

What would you think my chances are at getting an admit from the schools mentioned above?
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Re: Ask Alex @ MBA Apply [#permalink] New post 18 Nov 2013, 02:46
Got it

Last edited by undecidedonmba on 29 Nov 2013, 14:15, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Ask Alex @ MBA Apply [#permalink] New post 19 Nov 2013, 14:34
Rockstaaa wrote:
Hey there ,

Following is my profile . I am a 26year old Indian male .
-Did my B.com(accounting and finance) from University of Madras .
- Have a NCFM certificate in Fundamental Analysis and Financial markets issued by National Stock exchange (NSE)
-GMAT - 700

-worked at a shared service centre of mckinsey&co for 7months .
where for 3months I was the point of contact for their oracle r12 testing .

- after that I left cause I thought i was not really learing anything of use other than MSexcel .
So I joined my dad in his business (small iron sheets trading business and an agency) ; we were able to increase our turnover by 5% from the previous year and we were able to bring in 3 new clients in our agency . Worked for 1.2years and left cause of family problems .

- Then joined a small PE firm as a Research Analyst . Worked there for 3years . Was promoted to Senior Research analyst during my second year . Basically my job is to look at PE firms activities , M&A activities and analyse them and produce reports (rather help produce reports)

Extra-Curricular :
- volunteer at a charitable trust for 2.5years .
- published papers on stock market in a few journals.

Goals:
- I intend to get into investment banking for the short term (5-10years)
- intend to have my own venture capital firm (10+years)


It would be very helpful if you could evaluate my profie and let me know if my profile is apt for the following programs :
1. Warwick Business school
2. ISB
3. Oxford
4. Cambridge .



Thanking and Regards,
Raj


You should be in range for the schools you listed - the only potentially significant hurdle is based on your writing style, you don't have any experience living outside of India, which can be a concern especially in b-schools outside of India where you will be in a classroom with folks who will be very different than you.
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Re: Ask Alex @ MBA Apply [#permalink] New post 19 Nov 2013, 14:39
salmanqsm4 wrote:
> Hello. I'd like an honest assessment of my profile and chances of getting into below mentioned schools.
>
> Preferred Schools
> 1)Harvard
> 2)Stanford
> 3)Wharton
> 4) Chicago Booth.
> 5) MIT Sloan
> 6)Kellogg
> 7) Yale
> 8)Columbia

>
> Safety Schools
> 1) UTexas McCombs
> 2)Darden
> 3)Stern
> 4) Mendoza
> 5) Carlson
> 6) Ross
>
> Detailed Profile
>
> Introduction.
> My name is Salman Qasim and I was born and raised in Pakistan. I did my Bachelor's from UK and am also a member of Association of Chartered Certified Accountants of the UK. I have also cleared the Certified Financial Analyst Exams and have Certificate in Quantitative Finance provided by the Fitch Group. I also have the Financial Risk Manager and Professional Risk Manager credentials. I also have been involved in various extra-curricular activities.
>
> Achievements.
>
> 1)Bachelor's of Science in Applied Accounting awarded by Oxford Brookes University of UK in First Class Honours(US 3.6 GPA as per iGPA calculator of World Education Services)
> 2)Have a two Certificates of Merit awarded by Association of Chartered Certified Accountants for achieving highest marks worldwide in two of the exams.
> 3)Awarded Simpson Scholarship by ACCA on the basis of brilliantly written essays and strong academic history. 6000 applied out of which, 20 were short-listed for the scholarship. Among the 5 winners, I was the one.
> 4)Awarded Bronze medal by ACCA for achieving highest aggregate marks in ACCA exams in the year I graduated.
> 5) Have worked for PricewaterhouseCoopers, one of the big 4 accountancy firm, as an Audit Assistant and recently was promoted.
> 6) Have 750 GMAT score.
> 7) Volunteered for non-profit organization, Community Development Rural Program, which was established by my brother to work for the development of lifestyle in troubled tribal areas of Pakistan and awareness and promotin education. We established more than 5 mobile schools for the children in tribal areas and still working on it.
> 8) Was awarded a Candidate of the Year award by Professional Risk Management Association.
> 9) Completion of Higher Diploma in Accounting accredited by Scottish Qualifications Authority in shortest possible time.
> 10) Devoted to continuing professional education and has several Coursera Verified Certificates with distinction.
> 11) Have played cricket for my college internationally and was a class representative.
>
>
> Experience: 3 years in Audit and Consulting, I performed financial statement audits of companies that carried significant assets and liabilities subject to fair value accounting. I assessed the reasonableness of the valuations and assumptions behind the valuations of those assets and liabilities.
> Age: 24
> Nationality: Pakistan

Also, I'm considering Master in Finance program of Princeton University so please also assess that
>
>
>
>
> So that was a some information about my background. Will please evaluate and determine whether I have chances in any of the aforementioned schools? I am looking forward to hear from you. Thanks
>
> Kind Regards
> Salman Qasim(BSc,ACCA,CFA,FRM,CQF,PRM)


Readjust your expectations.

As a South Asian Big-4 guy, the top 8 schools are out of reach. Focus on the following:

Stretch: Stern, Cornell, Yale, Ross, Darden, Duke, UCLA - these are schools where you have enough of a shot that they're worth applying to 2-3 schools.

Sweet spot: Georgetown, Texas, USC, UNC, Emory, Maryland, Indiana, Purdue, Oxford, Cambridge. These are schools where you are competitive for and where you should focus on. Choose 3-4 from this list.

Safety: any school outside the top 30.

And for finance, yes look at Princeton's MSF, as that may be your best bet given your background (since you'll have a tough time getting into any top 16 MBA program).
_________________

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Re: Ask Alex @ MBA Apply [#permalink] New post 19 Nov 2013, 14:43
asha2013 wrote:
Hi Alex,

I'm Asha from India.
I completed my MBA (majored in Marketing) from a top-10 (non-IIM) B-School in India in 2008. I've been working as a consultant with PwC India in their Performance Improvement practice since then.

In short, I have 5.5yrs of consulting experience and am keen on an MBA in the US/Europe (Fall 2014 intake). I hold a 650 on the GMAT.
My goal is to move into brand management and am considering the following schools (in no particular order):

1. Fuqua
2. INSEAD (Fountainbleau)
3. Columbia
4. Haas
5. SDA Bocconi

What would you think my chances are at getting an admit from the schools mentioned above?


Since you already have an MBA, the chances are basically slim to none, even if your GMAT were a 700+.

Find another way to further your career instead of getting yet another MBA. That may sound harsh, but don't waste time trying to get another MBA. I'm guessing that you're looking for a way to work outside of India, but you're just going to have to find some other way to do so.
_________________

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alex@mbaapply.com
http://www.mbaapply.com
Follow me on Facebook

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Re: Ask Alex @ MBA Apply [#permalink] New post 19 Nov 2013, 14:44
undecidedonmba wrote:
AlexMBAApply wrote:
undecidedonmba wrote:
Alex,

I took my GMAT twice and I didn't score as I wanted. It is near the mid 600s which is the bottom of the 80% range of GMAT scores of my targeted school. I am not able to take it until mid next month so I will miss the R2 deadline for the school. Should I submit R2 app first and then let them know that I am in the process of making my GMAT score more competitive? What's the best approach in my current situation to not let a low GMAT score automatically ding me? I'm aiming for one school ranked 10-16.


Submit for R2, and write it in the optional that you're planning on retaking the GMAT. That's all you can do at this point.


Thanks, I plan to do R2. However, does it make a difference if I mention that I'll be retaking the GMAT in the optional? I am already addressing my lower than average GPA in there and don't want to bring up another negative. I am scheduled to take the GMAT only a couple of days after R2 deadline so I believe my app won't even get looked at prior to my GMAT retake. If I score better, I will send an update immediately. If I don't score better, I will sign up for another retake (my final shot) and send an email to my app manager that I'm planning to make my GMAT score more competitive. Would I be better off communicating in an email like this at a later point instead of in the optional? Other than my GMAT, I believe that the rest of my application will be competitive.


You are overthinking this.
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Re: Ask Alex @ MBA Apply [#permalink] New post 19 Nov 2013, 21:26
AlexMBAApply wrote:
salmanqsm4 wrote:
> Hello. I'd like an honest assessment of my profile and chances of getting into below mentioned schools.
>
> Preferred Schools
> 1)Harvard
> 2)Stanford
> 3)Wharton
> 4) Chicago Booth.
> 5) MIT Sloan
> 6)Kellogg
> 7) Yale
> 8)Columbia

>
> Safety Schools
> 1) UTexas McCombs
> 2)Darden
> 3)Stern
> 4) Mendoza
> 5) Carlson
> 6) Ross
>
> Detailed Profile
>
> Introduction.
> My name is Salman Qasim and I was born and raised in Pakistan. I did my Bachelor's from UK and am also a member of Association of Chartered Certified Accountants of the UK. I have also cleared the Certified Financial Analyst Exams and have Certificate in Quantitative Finance provided by the Fitch Group. I also have the Financial Risk Manager and Professional Risk Manager credentials. I also have been involved in various extra-curricular activities.
>
> Achievements.
>
> 1)Bachelor's of Science in Applied Accounting awarded by Oxford Brookes University of UK in First Class Honours(US 3.6 GPA as per iGPA calculator of World Education Services)
> 2)Have a two Certificates of Merit awarded by Association of Chartered Certified Accountants for achieving highest marks worldwide in two of the exams.
> 3)Awarded Simpson Scholarship by ACCA on the basis of brilliantly written essays and strong academic history. 6000 applied out of which, 20 were short-listed for the scholarship. Among the 5 winners, I was the one.
> 4)Awarded Bronze medal by ACCA for achieving highest aggregate marks in ACCA exams in the year I graduated.
> 5) Have worked for PricewaterhouseCoopers, one of the big 4 accountancy firm, as an Audit Assistant and recently was promoted.
> 6) Have 750 GMAT score.
> 7) Volunteered for non-profit organization, Community Development Rural Program, which was established by my brother to work for the development of lifestyle in troubled tribal areas of Pakistan and awareness and promotin education. We established more than 5 mobile schools for the children in tribal areas and still working on it.
> 8) Was awarded a Candidate of the Year award by Professional Risk Management Association.
> 9) Completion of Higher Diploma in Accounting accredited by Scottish Qualifications Authority in shortest possible time.
> 10) Devoted to continuing professional education and has several Coursera Verified Certificates with distinction.
> 11) Have played cricket for my college internationally and was a class representative.
>
>
> Experience: 3 years in Audit and Consulting, I performed financial statement audits of companies that carried significant assets and liabilities subject to fair value accounting. I assessed the reasonableness of the valuations and assumptions behind the valuations of those assets and liabilities.
> Age: 24
> Nationality: Pakistan

Also, I'm considering Master in Finance program of Princeton University so please also assess that
>
>
>
>
> So that was a some information about my background. Will please evaluate and determine whether I have chances in any of the aforementioned schools? I am looking forward to hear from you. Thanks
>
> Kind Regards
> Salman Qasim(BSc,ACCA,CFA,FRM,CQF,PRM)


Readjust your expectations.

As a South Asian Big-4 guy, the top 8 schools are out of reach. Focus on the following:

Stretch: Stern, Cornell, Yale, Ross, Darden, Duke, UCLA - these are schools where you have enough of a shot that they're worth applying to 2-3 schools.

Sweet spot: Georgetown, Texas, USC, UNC, Emory, Maryland, Indiana, Purdue, Oxford, Cambridge. These are schools where you are competitive for and where you should focus on. Choose 3-4 from this list.

Safety: any school outside the top 30.

And for finance, yes look at Princeton's MSF, as that may be your best bet given your background (since you'll have a tough time getting into any top 16 MBA program).
I also have 1 year experience in Consulting at Deloitte which is one of the feeders to the top 10 business schools. I am still working at Deloitte but when I will apply next year, it will be a 2 year experience. Are you sure that that won't help me get into the top 8 business schools?
MBA Admissions Consulting
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Posts: 2420
Location: Los Angeles, CA
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Re: Ask Alex @ MBA Apply [#permalink] New post 19 Nov 2013, 22:31
salmanqsm4 wrote:
AlexMBAApply wrote:
salmanqsm4 wrote:
> Hello. I'd like an honest assessment of my profile and chances of getting into below mentioned schools.
>
> Preferred Schools
> 1)Harvard
> 2)Stanford
> 3)Wharton
> 4) Chicago Booth.
> 5) MIT Sloan
> 6)Kellogg
> 7) Yale
> 8)Columbia

>
> Safety Schools
> 1) UTexas McCombs
> 2)Darden
> 3)Stern
> 4) Mendoza
> 5) Carlson
> 6) Ross
>
> Detailed Profile
>
> Introduction.
> My name is Salman Qasim and I was born and raised in Pakistan. I did my Bachelor's from UK and am also a member of Association of Chartered Certified Accountants of the UK. I have also cleared the Certified Financial Analyst Exams and have Certificate in Quantitative Finance provided by the Fitch Group. I also have the Financial Risk Manager and Professional Risk Manager credentials. I also have been involved in various extra-curricular activities.
>
> Achievements.
>
> 1)Bachelor's of Science in Applied Accounting awarded by Oxford Brookes University of UK in First Class Honours(US 3.6 GPA as per iGPA calculator of World Education Services)
> 2)Have a two Certificates of Merit awarded by Association of Chartered Certified Accountants for achieving highest marks worldwide in two of the exams.
> 3)Awarded Simpson Scholarship by ACCA on the basis of brilliantly written essays and strong academic history. 6000 applied out of which, 20 were short-listed for the scholarship. Among the 5 winners, I was the one.
> 4)Awarded Bronze medal by ACCA for achieving highest aggregate marks in ACCA exams in the year I graduated.
> 5) Have worked for PricewaterhouseCoopers, one of the big 4 accountancy firm, as an Audit Assistant and recently was promoted.
> 6) Have 750 GMAT score.
> 7) Volunteered for non-profit organization, Community Development Rural Program, which was established by my brother to work for the development of lifestyle in troubled tribal areas of Pakistan and awareness and promotin education. We established more than 5 mobile schools for the children in tribal areas and still working on it.
> 8) Was awarded a Candidate of the Year award by Professional Risk Management Association.
> 9) Completion of Higher Diploma in Accounting accredited by Scottish Qualifications Authority in shortest possible time.
> 10) Devoted to continuing professional education and has several Coursera Verified Certificates with distinction.
> 11) Have played cricket for my college internationally and was a class representative.
>
>
> Experience: 3 years in Audit and Consulting, I performed financial statement audits of companies that carried significant assets and liabilities subject to fair value accounting. I assessed the reasonableness of the valuations and assumptions behind the valuations of those assets and liabilities.
> Age: 24
> Nationality: Pakistan

Also, I'm considering Master in Finance program of Princeton University so please also assess that
>
>
>
>
> So that was a some information about my background. Will please evaluate and determine whether I have chances in any of the aforementioned schools? I am looking forward to hear from you. Thanks
>
> Kind Regards
> Salman Qasim(BSc,ACCA,CFA,FRM,CQF,PRM)


Readjust your expectations.

As a South Asian Big-4 guy, the top 8 schools are out of reach. Focus on the following:

Stretch: Stern, Cornell, Yale, Ross, Darden, Duke, UCLA - these are schools where you have enough of a shot that they're worth applying to 2-3 schools.

Sweet spot: Georgetown, Texas, USC, UNC, Emory, Maryland, Indiana, Purdue, Oxford, Cambridge. These are schools where you are competitive for and where you should focus on. Choose 3-4 from this list.

Safety: any school outside the top 30.

And for finance, yes look at Princeton's MSF, as that may be your best bet given your background (since you'll have a tough time getting into any top 16 MBA program).
I also have 1 year experience in Consulting at Deloitte which is one of the feeders to the top 10 business schools. I am still working at Deloitte but when I will apply next year, it will be a 2 year experience. Are you sure that that won't help me get into the top 8 business schools?


Yes, I'm pretty sure. Again, Big-4 folks who aren't from certain backgrounds (underrepresented minorities in the US) and regions (Latin America, Africa, Middle East) have a very tough time cracking the top 8, unless they have some truly exceptional or unique experiences, most notably competitive sports at a professional or Olympic level. Furthermore, you're competing against Big-4 consultants at Deloitte who have more than 2 years on the consulting side.

I know what I say may not be what you want to hear and it may sound discouraging, but it's important to go into this process with realistic expectations. Good luck.
_________________

Alex Chu
alex@mbaapply.com
http://www.mbaapply.com
Follow me on Facebook

Re: Ask Alex @ MBA Apply   [#permalink] 19 Nov 2013, 22:31
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