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What is realistic?

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What is realistic? [#permalink] New post 01 Apr 2011, 23:09
Hi Alex

I would like an evaluation of my profile to understand what my realistic stretch/match/safety schools should be.

Profile:

Undergrad GPA: 2.92 (3.67 Finance, 3.2 Business Law) from Boston University
UG Considerations: escalating GPA, Deans List in Junior Year, minored in International Relations, received 20 more credits above the minimum requirement; I also took a break after my second year (details below); worked all through UG (ave 20hr/wk) and at one point holding 3 jobs (30hr/wk), including a Research Assistant position with the Finance and Economics Dpt at BU.

GMAT: 720

Work Ex: After UG, 3 years working in Singapore as a Financial Analyst for a global top tier Investment Bank; followed by, 2 years working in India as head of business development for one of 3 business units (40% of Company’s Revenue) for a publically traded pharmaceutical manufacturing firm (promoted 1 year after joining); and currently nearly 8 months in Taiwan working as a business development consultant for the same pharmaceutical firm

Extra Curr: currently studying mandarin at a credited university/language school in Taipei; passed Japanese Proficiency Language Test Level 4 (basic)

UG Break: after an abysmal first 2 years of UG, I took a break from academics and traveled to China for the first time where I was inspired by the people there on how they managed to overcome their own hardships (which paled against my own) and finding the resolve to persevere. After which I interned for a personal financial investment company and discovered my own resolve. After I came back, I demonstrated my newfound interest and dedication to a professor and mentor of mine (ironically one of the same professors where I did less than a good job in his class) in emerging markets and became a RA for him in the F&E dpt at BU.

Post-MBA Plan: Long term is to start my own business management consulting firm in Asia, focusing on small to midcap firms achieve their next level in business from operation to strategy. Short Term is to work as a business management consultant in an existing top tier consulting firm using my collective experience focusing on strategy and general management in Asia.

Interests: traveling (have visited over 30 countries, and lived in 5 countries), economic and social development in emerging markets (Asia Focus)

Personal Details: Born in Seoul Korea, adopted, naturalized US citizen, currently 27y/o (this year), male, raised by single mother and grandparents, one brother

Stretch Schools: HBS, Kellog
Target Schools: Columbia, Fuqua, Haas, LBS, Insead, IMD, IE Business School
Safety Schools: Stern, Anderson, Judge

Do these sound about right or am I completely off base? Is my GPA insurmountable? Considering the above, do I need to take one more year to build an “alternative transcript” to augment my GPA?
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Re: What is realistic? [#permalink] New post 02 Apr 2011, 10:02
Adcoms are willing to overlook your GPA so long as you take 2-3 courses and ace them (as long as it's an intro-level college quant course -- calculus, algebra, stats, accounting, microecon). The only exception to this will be HBS, which I think your chances are going to be slim (not only because they are one of the few schools that really care about GPAs, but also because you're up against too many folks that they'd rather pick which will mean you'll need a lot of luck on your side).

Stretch: Kellogg, Columbia, INSEAD, LBS (choose 2)
Sweet spot: NYU, Haas, Fuqua, Anderson, IMD (choose 3)
Safety Schools: IE, Judge (choose 1)

There are no real safety schools within the top 16 -- this applies to just about any applicant since it's become so competitive to get in.
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Re: What is realistic? [#permalink] New post 02 Apr 2011, 11:19
Great - thanks Alex, appreciate the quick feedback!
Re: What is realistic?   [#permalink] 02 Apr 2011, 11:19
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