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7 Tips For MBA Applicants From Family Businesses  [#permalink]

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New post 28 Aug 2017, 10:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: 7 Tips For MBA Applicants From Family Businesses
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You work for the family business and are applying for an MBA. Will this background be a net plus for you, or a minus? How can you make the most of this experience?

Whether you work for your family’s tiny startup with headquarters in your home’s basement, at one of your family-owned local grocery stores, or at your family’s multimillion dollar enterprise with hundreds of employees, you definitely have numerous strengths that you can focus on in your essays.

Here are some benefits of working for your family business:

1. You see the forest and the trees.

If you’ve grown up in the business, no matter its size, you probably have gained some valuable knowledge about many aspects of it: sales, production, marketing, product innovation, customer service, perhaps even basic finance. Over the years (some applicants will have started working in the business on weekends as teenagers), and especially if the business is small, you will have the same advantage as other applicants who have worked in startups or other small businesses, which is the experience of filling different roles and gaining a more holistic view of how the business operates. This allows you to show knowledge of and appreciation for the importance of various business functions working together for a common goal.

2. You have an owner’s mindset, not an employee’s mindset.

You can also demonstrate a built-in investment in the success of the business, whether you plan to return to work there post-MBA or not. This added incentive to see the business thrive and grow may have prompted you to work after-hours on projects that you initiated. Additionally, with some level of built-in trust from management, you may also have been given more leeway to innovate, making the potential impact of your contributions that much greater and the lessons learned that much more valuable.

3. You’ve developed communications skills that allow you to influence those senior to you.

You are most likely much younger than your relatives who own and manage the company. Therefore, you may have helped to introduce more tech-savvy innovations or a social media presence, which come more naturally to you. Getting “buy-in” from an “old school” mentality is another opportunity to show your communications skills and savvy.

4. You have a job when you graduate, if you want it.

The school won’t need to worry about your employment prospects, if you want to return to the family business. Having said all that, you still need to prove that you’ve enjoyed the level of responsibility that you claim.

The adcom members may be skeptical that your dad/mom/uncle/aunt really held your feet to the fire in meeting deadlines or proving yourself on the job. The dynamics among relatives who work together can also be tricky, and getting letters of recommendation will be a challenge.

Here’s how you can deal with these issues:

1. Quantify your achievements and offer as much anecdotal evidence as possible.

Yes, this is strategically important even if you are not from a family business background, but it’s especially true here. If you successfully negotiated a new lease agreement for the business saving it $X per month, found a better way to screen job applicants, brought in new customers through the Facebook business page you created that reduced cost per lead by Y%, write about it. The classic rule of “show, don’t tell” is critical here.

2. Demonstrate your ability to successfully navigate the built-in pitfalls of working with family members.

Let’s say you are in a situation where your family members are fighting over the succession plans of the family business after the business owner and patriarch passed away. Things get ugly, and you convince everyone to work with a skilled mediator (whom you had chosen) to help reach an understanding. The mediation succeeds, which arguably saves the business from being eaten up by lawsuits. It also manages to preserve family relationships.

Or let’s say you have ideas to expand the sales territory for your family business, but the management resists change. Through your research, you are able to prove that your idea is a good and calculated risk. You succeed in selling your fresh thinking to your parents, and the business benefits from your ideas.

3. Don’t ask relatives, especially those who share your last name, for your letters of recommendation.

Even if that relative is your direct supervisor and knows your work and capabilities better than anyone, there is simply no way that a letter from a parent, cousin, grandparent, or other family member will seem objective enough to be credible. You may need to approach a supervisor from a previous job who can attest to your maturity, quantitative skills and initiative, and other achievements, or someone who supervised you in another organization – perhaps if you were an active volunteer in a community organization or church group. However, you need to have recommenders who can speak about your abilities in the recent past – within the last two years. If you don’t have these options available to you and you’ve only worked in the family business, perhaps someone affiliated with the business might be suitable: an accountant or attorney, or an important customer or supplier. Remember, your interactions with these individuals must be frequent enough and substantial enough for them to comment intelligently and with some specificity on your work and personal character traits.

All in all, working for a family business has probably provided you with extremely valuable experience. It may also have made you nimble in your abilities to work across different departments, and given you a front-row seat in watching your relatives deal with the ongoing challenges of running a business in rapidly changing times. Not a bad set of experiences with which to apply to b-school!

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Related Resources:

From Example to Exemplary, a free guide to writing outstanding application essays

Your Work Experience and MBA Admissions

• What Your Work Experience Reveals About You in Your MBA Application

Tags: MBA Admissions

The post 7 Tips For MBA Applicants From Family Businesses appeared first on Accepted Admissions Blog.
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

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Sallie Mae: Student Loans with Options and Flexibility  [#permalink]

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New post 29 Aug 2017, 09:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: Sallie Mae: Student Loans with Options and Flexibility
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How are you going to pay for grad school if you don’t get a scholarship? Loans. Let’s learn about Sallie Mae’s student loan options.

One last reminder to beat our sponsor’s price increase! AST is brought to you by Accepted, and Accepted is raising its prices on August 31. You have until August 30 to snag at current rates outstanding individual advising that will help you show that you fit in and stand out. To access that expert guidance, go to accepted.com/services and save.

Our guest today is Charles Rocha, EVP and CMO of Sallie Mae. Charlie had over 20 years of experience at Bank of America, MBNA and NationsBank before joining Sallie Mae in 2009. He’s going to talk about how Sallie Mae can help you pay for your education. Welcome!

Can you provide an overview of Sallie Mae’s options for graduate students? [1:50]

We have a number of specific products for graduate students – med, dental, law, business, and other grad programs.

What distinguishes these different loan programs? [2:29]

In some places, the rates and terms are slightly different. And the repayment terms are different. For instance, for doctors we offer a 20-year term.

We offer both fixed and variable rates.

For doctors, does repayment start after residency? [3:20]

Doctors can defer repayment for at least three years post graduation, so you can complete residency. But it varies based on discipline – you can defer up to five years if you’re doing a fellowship. But if you’ve gone to business school, it’s six months.

For grad admissions, the focus is on getting very specific skills to advance their career. They may go into grad school the same way, but they come out very different, and that’s where we differentiate.

What makes Sallie Mae different from other loan options? [5:00]

The amount of time and energy we invest after graduation.

We have a lot of flexibility. We give students the option to make interest only payments during the first year after graduation when they’re in transition (such as moving to a new city or starting a new job).

We also have the option of forbearance – up to 12 months.

Some folks would rather have a lower payment for a longer period.

Does interest accrue during forbearance? [9:15]

Yes.

Is Sallie Mae affiliated with the US government? [9:35]

No. It was originally a government service. But we’re now a publicly traded bank – it’s just that all our lending is focused on the education industry.

There is virtually no underwriting in the government loan sector, but there is in the private sector.

What are your underwriting criteria? [11:20]

We look at credit history – have they handled credit responsibly. And we look at their overall debt composition.

We will consider you with a co-signer.

The application process only takes 10 minutes and you find out quickly if you’re approved (or approved with a co-signer).

So a college student is better off taking on some debt and establishing credit? [13:05]

Having good credit is important as soon as you graduate.

How much debt is too much? [13:40]

We look at: does the debt you’re bringing to the table look like too much, and how much will the grad program add?

What’s the application process? [14:25]

Everything can be done online at salliemae.com. There’s also a phone number if you prefer to apply over the phone.

The information we need is pretty straightforward – name, address, social security number, work history, etc. With that information (and your permission), we review your credit report and make a decision.

What advice would you give to someone planning ahead, to improve the likelihood they would qualify for a loan in the future? [15:55]

The first step is establishing credit and handling it responsibly.

Research programs and what they’re going to cost. Take advantage of scholarships and federal financial aid first – we’re not trying to make loans in lieu of federal loans, they have good rates.

Look for scholarships, file the FAFSA. Figure how much you have in savings. Then if you have a gap, look at a lender like Sallie Mae.

Are there any academic considerations? [18:15]

We do business with every college and university in America If you’ve got good credit, we can approve you so you can afford that tuition bill.

The differences between fields are really in repayment options. As far as academic requirements, we rely on the schools to make those determinations in the admissions process.

How does outstanding debt level from undergrad affect graduate loan decisions? [20:15]

We will provide up to the cost of attendance for grad school. We will look at your total student indebtedness. If it’s outside the norm, we’ll want to have a conversation with you to make sure you’ll be able to repay.

Could that require a co-signer? [21:20]

Potentially, yes.

Do you make loans to non-US citizens? [21:30]

Yes, with a US-citizen co-signer.

And do you finance US students to study abroad? [21:50]

We will finance international students at US institutions with a US co-signer, and we will fund US citizens at school overseas.

What is the Study Starter Benefit? [22:30]

Everyone who takes a loan can take advantage of online tutoring and study guides through chegg.com.

Part of what we want is to ensure that people are successful. Some banks have incentives for good grades – we want to help you earn those good grades.

Does Sallie Mae consolidate loans? [25:05]

Not at this time. We can recommend services that do.

This is what Sallie Mae does: we help young Americans pay for college and grad school. We’re thoughtful about loan repayment options, and we’re constantly trying to improve our options. We work with financial aid professionals.

How do you recommend students choose between variable and fixed rates? [27:30]

We provide information to help people understand the difference and the pros and cons, and we allow people to make the decision.

Often MBA students prefer the variable rate because they expect to repay it faster, while med students, who’ll borrow for a long time, tend to favor the fixed rate.

When you’re still in school, we encourage people to make payments against the loan when they can – even small payments save money in the long run and reduce the amount of interest that accrues.

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Related Links:

Sallie Mae

Chegg

Paying for your MBA

Related Shows:

The Consortium Can Help You Get Your MBA

Paul & Daisy Soros Fellowship for New Americans: Funding, Community for Immigrants

Will Your Graduate Education Pay?

Saving Money on Your Student Debt: the Common Bond Story

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Tags: Admissions Straight Talk, Grad School Admissions, Law School Admissions, MBA Admissions, Medical School Admissions

The post Sallie Mae: Student Loans with Options and Flexibility [Episode 222] appeared first on Accepted Admissions Blog.
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

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310-815-9553

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MIT Sloan Fellows Essay Tips & Deadlines  [#permalink]

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New post 29 Aug 2017, 10:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: MIT Sloan Fellows Essay Tips & Deadlines
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In my decade-plus of experience assisting MIT Sloan Fellows applicants (successes every year), I have seen that the adcom values applicants who, among other things, demonstrate consistent, outstanding impact and are on track to become leaders in their company and even industry (“high performing” per the MIT SF website). While your application, as a whole, will convey these points about you, the essays are an ideal opportunity to make the case affirmatively, directly, and vividly, with example and detail.

Use your essays to convey fit with MIT Sloan’s enduring emphasis on admitting students who will be proactive, innovative leaders and agents of change – as the Sloan Fellows’ website says, “individuals who aren’t satisfied with the status quo and have demonstrated their ability to effect change.”

The essays all together should create a vibrant, multifaceted view of your candidacy:

• The cover letter serves as a lens and sets the context for understanding your candidacy.

• The essay delves into your experience – it’s a close-up of you in action, so consider what you want to show the adcom in that context.

• The video essay focuses on (for most applicants certainly) a non-work aspect of your life and shows how you engage people personally.

As you select your essay topics and prepare the essays, keep this holistic picture in mind – especially important given the expectation that each MIT Sloan Fellow will contribute substantially and distinctively among highly accomplished peers.

Essays

Cover Letter:

This global leadership development program is a 12-month, full-time executive MBA program designed to prepare an elite group of global mid-career managers with the management skills necessary to magnify their impact as leaders and innovators. Our guiding principles are to help you develop critical skills essential for future leaders; to instill a spirit of innovation through exceptional opportunities at Sloan and across MIT; to foster a deep spirit of community among fellows; to provide a breadth of electives and depth through one-on-one relationships with senior faculty; and to offer flexible curriculum to allow you to tailor the program to meet your specific professional objectives. We accomplish this by maintaining a foundation in our three pillars of: leadership, innovation and global perspective.

Taking the above into consideration please submit a cover letter seeking a place in the MIT Sloan Fellows Program. Please share what are your immediate and long term professional objectives and, how the MIT Sloan Fellows Program will help you to achieve them. Your letter should conform to a standard business correspondence, include one or more examples that illustrate why you meet the desired criteria and be addressed to Mr. Rod Garcia, Senior Director of Admissions. (500 words or less)

Let’s break this question into three parts:

First, your professional objectives. Be specific about position, company/industry, expected scope of responsibilities, and vision for what you want to accomplish. Give more detail for the short-term goals; for the longer-term goals, show direction, but they need not be detailed.

Second, your objectives’ fit with the program. Identify and describe specific aspects of your professional objectives that align with the program’s offerings and resources. Focus on the 2-3 key elements of this fit, and discuss them thoughtfully. Avoid a “laundry list” of fit points.

Third, example(s) that you meet the desired criteria. MIT is always interested in what you’ve done (action, not talk) as evidence of what you’ll do – so forgo the temptation to laud the criteria and instead present 1 or 2 brief, specific examples (at least one fairly recent) of your actions that show how well you meet the stated criteria.

Essay: Please tell us about a time you were recently on a team which had competing priorities. What challenges did you face, how did you approach the challenges and what did you learn from this experience? (500 words or less)

In selecting a story for this essay, keep the focus on the core phrase, “a team which had competing priorities.” Ideally your selected story will be: relatively recent and involving significant stakes (giving strategic benefit), and relatively straightforward and hence not needing much background explanation (given the brevity of the essay, of which the story is only a part). Further, if possible, use an impressive story that shows an aspect of your work that is particularly interesting and/ impactful, and ideally also reveals diversity.

Use a story-based structure, which is both efficient and engaging for the reader. First, set the scene briefly – what, where, when, who – and clarify what was at stake for the team. Next, narrate the story, clarifying your specific role – your actions should be clear; indicate why you did what you did (or didn’t do). Conclude the story with the team’s results.

Using the approach above, the story itself will portray the challenges you faced and how you approached them. After the story, add a short paragraph reflecting on what you learned from the experience. I recommend 1-3 points derived specifically from the story. Avoid generic lessons here. And ideally add a sentence noting how you applied one of those lessons subsequently.

Video Statement: Please introduce yourself to your future classmates via a brief 60 second video statement. (This video will be used for application purposes only and will not be shared.) Videos should be a single take (no editing) lasting no more than one minute and consisting of you speaking directly to the camera. We recommend using an application such as QuickTime or iMovie to record yourself.

This is a chance to round out your profile while also demonstrating high social IQ and communication skills. In terms of content: your future classmates will not know your resume, so you should include a professional sketch, but keep the facts short (as they are redundant of other application info) and leaven them with the “why” behind the story – what propelled you onto this path. Include also a couple of key non-work points, and these topics will vary person to person – they could be a compelling formative experience, unique geographic or cultural background, important avocation or activity, etc. For this latter part, think about (a) what will differentiate and distinguish you, and (b) what will represent a contribution in some way (even of perspective).

If you aren’t accustomed to doing video presentations, practice and expect to put some effort into visual elements like background and lighting. Keep the background simple, clean, and uncluttered. Have the light behind the camera and shining on you. Dress professionally.

Additional Information (optional): You will have the option to provide any additional information you would like the Admissions Committee to know that may be helpful in evaluating your candidacy (i.e. choice of recommenders, areas of concern in your academic record, other extenuating circumstances, etc.). This information should be provided in a written format (200 words or less).

If needed, use this space to address a weakness in your profile or qualifications. You can also use it to explain things that are not weaknesses but still need clarification (lack of recommendation from a boss or gap in resume for a perfectly understandable reason). This question also allows you to discuss a diversity element in your personal background or simply some unique – and relevant — area of interest — succinctly.

If you would like professional guidance with your MIT Sloan Fellows MBA application, check out Accepted’s MBA essay editing and MBA admissions consulting or our MBA Application Packages, which include advising, editing, interview coaching, and a resume edit for the MIT Sloan Fellows application.

MIT Sloan Fellows 2017-18 Application Deadlines:

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***Disclaimer: Information is subject to change. Please check with individual programs to verify the essay questions, instructions and deadlines.***

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Cindy Tokumitsu has advised hundreds of successful applicants, helping them gain acceptance to top MBA and EMBA programs in her 15+ years with Accepted. She would love to help you too. Want Cindy to help you get Accepted? Click here to get in touch!
 

Related Resources:

• Fitting In & Standing Out: The Paradox at the Heart of Admissions, a free guide

• Too Old for an MBA? Check Out 3 Outstanding MBA and EMBA Alternatives, a podcast episode

• 7 Signs an Experience Belongs in Your Application

Tags: MBA Admissions

The post MIT Sloan Fellows Essay Tips & Deadlines appeared first on Accepted Admissions Blog.
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

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No Time to Waste: Admissions Consulting Price Increase Ahead!  [#permalink]

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New post 30 Aug 2017, 09:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: No Time to Waste: Admissions Consulting Price Increase Ahead!
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One of the keys for application success is having a strategy. And a key part of a successful strategy is staying on top of your timeline.

With deadlines for so many programs coming up between October and January, late summer is an ideal time to get serious about your applications. Another reason why there’s no time to waste: our prices are going up on August 31. Contact us now to determine which service best fits your needs!

You’ll work one-on-one with an admissions expert who will be by your side throughout the admissions process. From consulting on school selection, to reviewing statements of purpose and CVs, to prepping for interviews, to helping you choose among acceptances – we’ve coached thousands of students like you to success at elite programs.

With deadlines approaching fast, and our prices increasing at the end of the month, there’s no time to lose! Contact us now to be matched with your consultant.

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Tags: Admissions Consulting, College Admissions, Grad School Admissions, Law School Admissions, MBA Admissions, Medical School Admissions

The post No Time to Waste: Admissions Consulting Price Increase Ahead! appeared first on Accepted Admissions Blog.
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

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Accepted ~ The Premier Admissions Consultancy
310-815-9553

Co-Author of: MBA Admission for Smarties: The No-Nonsense Guide to Acceptance at Top Business Schools

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CBS: Do You Have What it Takes?  [#permalink]

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New post 30 Aug 2017, 10:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: CBS: Do You Have What it Takes?
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An MBA is a serious investment in your future – it’s two years out of your career, sure, but it’s also training, a credential, and a network that you’ll have for the rest of your life. That’s why your application strategy is so important: choosing (and getting accepted to) the right school for your goals isn’t just admissions talk – it can determine whether your MBA experience is amazing or just so-so.

Applying successfully to a top MBA program like Columbia Business School takes organization, effort, smarts – and strategy. With Columbia’s rolling admissions schedule, it’s time to get serious about crafting and implementing that strategy.

To help you do just that, we’ve created our special one hour webinar, Get Accepted to Columbia Business School. Accepted’s founder, Linda Abraham, will show you how to approach the CBS application strategically. You’ll learn what the adcom is looking for, and how you can stand out in the application process – all in just one hour.

Reserve your spot today!

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Tags: MBA Admissions

The post CBS: Do You Have What it Takes? appeared first on Accepted Admissions Blog.
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________

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Accepted ~ The Premier Admissions Consultancy
310-815-9553

Co-Author of: MBA Admission for Smarties: The No-Nonsense Guide to Acceptance at Top Business Schools

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Harvard Business School Announces Certificate in Business Analytics  [#permalink]

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New post 31 Aug 2017, 09:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: Harvard Business School Announces Certificate in Business Analytics
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Many business schools are adding specialized master’s degrees in business analytics. However, Harvard Business School is taking a different approach. Rather than developing a specialized degree program, Harvard will offer a certificate of business analytics starting in March 2018. The cost of obtaining the certificate will be $50,000.

HBS is collaborating with the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) and the Department of Statistics in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences to produce the program. It is also uniting with an outside vendor, 2U, Inc., the online educational provider that is used by UNC Kenan-Flagler to deliver its remote MBA program.

The analytics certificate will take nine months to complete, with most of the coursework being online. It will require 8-10 hours a week to finish, with two two-day immersions on campus. HBS and its collaborators are creating seven new courses in the curriculum, each with three hours of live instruction by faculty, with most of the studying self-paced online by students. The structure of the program will likely look like this:

• No more than two courses at a time in each of the three terms

• Four courses on business analytics and three on analytical foundations

• 90-minute live sessions that will probably occur first thing in the mornings or early evenings

• On-campus immersions that will take place between the first and second terms and at the end of the third term for cohort building and advanced topics

• Learning primarily through case studies

Karim Lakhani, co-founder of the Harvard Business School Digital Initiative, has been working on the analytics project for nearly a year. He says that the program is designed for post-MBA or technical managers who have analytical roles in their organizations or who are expected to get them. According to Lakhani, HBS designed this program so that working professionals and executives would be able to use these materials in a way that exposes them to the best ideas, pedagogics, and faculty without having to take time off from work.

“The uniqueness of this program is that this will really blend the tech and science side with the business side,” Lakhani says. “We see the future of business now as being technology-centric and the best managers, executives, and entrepreneurs will understand both the science and tech side and the business side.”

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Related Resources:

Too Old for an MBA? Check Out 3 Outstanding MBA and EMBA Alternatives, a podcast episode

What Does Harvard Business School Want?, a short video

Harvard Business School MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines

Tags: Grad School Admissions, MBA Admissions

The post Harvard Business School Announces Certificate in Business Analytics appeared first on Accepted Admissions Blog.
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________

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What Does “At The Very Center of Business” Mean for CBS Applicants?  [#permalink]

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New post 01 Sep 2017, 09:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: What Does “At The Very Center of Business” Mean for CBS Applicants?
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Columbia Business School Essay 2 asks you to watch a short video entitled, “The Center” and then use it to answer the question, “How will you take advantage of being ‘at the very center of business’?” The video and the essay question have enabled Columbia to regain its brand and market share.

Over the years, Columbia strayed from its core strength: its geographic location and the access that the school offers its students. As a reaction to New York’s financial industry shrinkage and then, a drop in applications, they began pitching teams, clusters, and close-knit communities. I’m sorry, but those words do not even begin to describe Columbia.

CBS is just like New York: historical, large, gritty, and filled with surprises. It doesn’t coddle its students, and its students don’t expect to be coddled. They are smart, resourceful, and assertive.

So what does it mean to be at the very center of business? Well, you have the usual suspects: access to corporate world headquarters, brown bags with executives, subway rides to everything. But I ask you, where else can you have an accidental meeting at a cultural event with the Morgan Stanley’s CEO, James Gorman, or award winning entertainer and entrepreneur Dr. Dre?

Columbia wants its students to embrace New York and at the same time not allow the abundance of everything to intimidate them. Years ago, I watched a Columbia Business School PowerPoint presentation. The closing slide displayed a world map. The Columbia campus was superimposed on a big red apple that spread over half the Atlantic Ocean and an arrow pointing to the apple as the “Center of the World.” I keep that image in my mind as I offer my Accepted clients my best rendition of the song, New York, New York, “if you can make it there, you can make it anywhere” (High kicks and all. Fortunately they can’t see me when I dance).

As a former admissions dean and director, I would expect to see an answer to that essay that would enable me to identify (and admit) people who thrive in the hustle bustle of New York. I would want my applicants to capture the energy of the city that never sleeps. I would hope that the applicant understands the living laboratory we fondly call, “The City.” At the same time, I would filter out students who would be intimidated by New York. I would want my students to love their NYC experience: rats, roaches and all.

This post is part of our Big Brand Theory Series for MBA applicants.

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By Natalie Grinblatt Epstein, an accomplished Accepted consultant/editor (since 2008) and entrepreneur. Natalie is a former MBA Admissions Dean and Director at Ross, Johnson, and Carey. Want Natalie to help you get accepted to business school? Click here to get in touch!
Related Resources:

Leadership in Admissions, a free guide

Columbia Business School MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines

Podcast Interview with the Columbia Business School Admissions Team

Tags: MBA Admissions

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HBS Reveals Class of 2019 Profile  [#permalink]

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New post 03 Sep 2017, 09:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: HBS Reveals Class of 2019 Profile
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Harvard Business School (HBS) has updated its class profile for the class of 2019. Let’s see how you’d fit in.

• HBS’s application volume blew past 10K applications in a single cycle — rising to 10,351 from 9,759 in the 2015-16 cycle, a 6% increase.

• HBS’s yield climbed a bit: up 1% to 91% from 90% last year as it also grew its class slightly (6 additional students)

• The percentage of women declined slightly to 42% this year from last year’s 43%.

• The average GPA also dropped this year from 3.71 for the Class of 2018 to 3.67 for the Class of 2019.

• The median GMAT remains the same (730).

• The percentage of U.S. citizens remains unchanged. The feared drop in international enrollment in the wake of President Trump’s election and policies hasn’t materialized at Harvard.

• Enrollment from Africa, while still low, increased by 33%, from 12 to 16 students.

• The percentage of the class coming from a business or economics educational background climbed  by roughly 10% (41% of last year’s class to 45% of this year’s). STEM and Humanities each dipped by roughly 5%.

Profile of the MBA Class of 2019:

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My Take:

This is the first time that HBS is displaying the average quant and verbal scores of the admitted students who took the GRE. The ETS School Comparison Tool provides a predicted GMAT Total Score as well as a very wide Predicted Score range for a given GRE score. According to ETS, the Predicted Score for an entering student at HBS with a verbal score of 164 and a quant score of 164 is 710, 20 points lower than the actual average GMAT score at Harvard. This 730 score is well within the predicted score range (650-760) GMAT average of HBS students.

These numbers demonstrate that applicants seem to be getting into HBS with slightly lower GRE scores than GMAT scores. That differential gives those of you struggling with the GMAT a small window to apply with a slightly lower, but still high, GRE. And realize as Chad Losee, Managing Director of MBA Admissions and Financial Aid, says, “You’re much more than a test score.“

Posting the average GRE scores will be very helpful to applicants trying to decide if they’re competitive or need to retake an exam. I hope that more schools will follow Harvard’s influential lead and begin posting their GRE numbers as well.

Some of you may still wonder which test to take. Quoting Losee again, “Choose the one that allows you to best show your strengths, then move on to other parts of your application.” I couldn’t agree more.

Final point, very much in line with Losee’s “You’re much more than a test score“ comment: While HBS certainly isn’t ignoring academic stats, the non-movement in GMAT scores in this era of a GMAT race to the finish and the slight dip in average GPA combined with HBS’s 11% acceptance rate, show that HBS is weighing experience a little more in its process. It is not disregarding academics, but appears to put its thump on the “much more” side of its evaluation scales. Make sure your experience shows that habit of leadership and engaged community citizenship that HBS is looking for.

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By Linda Abraham, president and founder of Accepted.com and co-author of the definitive book on MBA admissions, MBA Admission for Smarties: The No-Nonsense Guide to Acceptance at Top Business SchoolsHarvard Business School MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines

• What Does Harvard Business School Want?, a video

What HBS is Looking For, a blog series

Tags: MBA Admissions

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4 Tips for Explaining Your Status as a Serial Job Switcher  [#permalink]

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New post 03 Sep 2017, 10:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: 4 Tips for Explaining Your Status as a Serial Job Switcher
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It’s your job to demonstrate to the adcom that you stand out from the applicant pool and are exactly the person they want in their next MBA class. In this series, you’ll learn how to dig deep to unearth your unique character traits, experiences, skills, and talents and bring them to the forefront of your application, so that when the adcom pick up your file, they’re hooked from the very first moment.

You’ve got high stats, great skills, and have had awesome jobs…too many of them. You suffer from what we call in the biz Frequent Job-Switching Syndrome (or FJSS). Those who suffer from FJSS don’t have trouble finding jobs; they have trouble keeping them. A resume with 2-3 impressive post-college or post-grad school jobs looks great, but once that number jumps higher than 5-6 jobs in as many years, it doesn’t look good, no matter how impressive the jobs are.

Why does this matter to b-schools? Adcoms are looking for students who will a) make it through their one to two years of school (or longer if it’s a part-time program), and b) be easy to place post-MBA. If you’ve had trouble keeping a job for longer than a year, you’re going to have a hard time showing that you’re capable of a and b above.

So what can you do?

You’re going to have to play defense. Here are some explanations that may work for you:

1. You moved around a lot.

Most positions require you to live within a commutable distance from the office. If you moved across the state or jumped to another state or country, you most likely had to quit one job and search for another. And if you moved many times in the last five or so years, then you had to drop and search for new positions multiple times. You’re going to need to explain why you had to move (a sick parent, a new job or school for a spouse, etc.), but once you provide valid reasons, then your FJSS won’t look as bad.

2. You got laid off.

Listen, it happens. And it could easily happen to really talented and skilled people like you. And while you were laid off, maybe you got a less-than-perfect job to help pay the bills until you landed a better job. And then you got that better job (because you’re so talented and skilled), so had to drop the temp job. Sometimes these things are simply unavoidable.

3. You had scheduling conflicts.

For this one you’ll need to explain why you had to switch from full-time to part-time or day-time to night-time or US hours to China hours, and why your job at the time couldn’t accommodate.

4. You weren’t ready to settle.

Beware of sounding like a commitment-phobe here and tread this line carefully. Sometimes a job just doesn’t work out. You don’t want to focus on things like interpersonal problems or other drama here, but on more substantial “fit” concerns: You weren’t challenged enough or it didn’t provide long-term growth potential. Try to keep your tone positive – ie, you were looking for a new challenge in the new job, rather than badmouthing the old one.

Your reasoning for frequent job switching will probably fall into more than one of these categories. It’s unlikely that you moved five times in five years or that you got laid off after working a single year at five different jobs (and if so, yikes!). But if you moved once, got laid off once, and had some scheduling issues, then you may be able to create quite a compelling and understandable explanation for how you contracted FJSS and how you can be certain that the disease is only temporary. After all, with the right medicine (that world-class MBA and supportive network), you plan on kicking FJSS to the curb, never to be seen again as you settle into that perfect, dream job that you’ve got your mind set on.

Read the complete 9 Secrets to Standing Out in Your MBA Application series for more tips on how to create a compelling application that highlights your unique strengths, character traits, and talents.

For personalized advice tailored just for you, check out our MBA admissions consulting and editing services and work one-on-one with a pro who will help you discover your competitive advantage and use it to get ACCEPTED.

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Related Resources:

5 Fatal Flaws to Avoid in Your MBA Application Essays, a free guide

MBA Admissions Advice for Career Changers

• Different Dimensions of Diversity, a podcast episode

Tags: MBA Admissions

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Columbia Business School’s 2017 Entering Class Profile  [#permalink]

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New post 04 Sep 2017, 09:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: Columbia Business School’s 2017 Entering Class Profile
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Here’s a look at who makes up Columbia Business School’s (CBS) entering class of 2017, taken from the CBS website.

• Applications received: 6188

• Students accepted: 1019

• Students enrolled: 753, divided into 11 clusters

• Women: 41%

• U.S. minorities: 34%

• International students: 43%

• Average GMAT score: 724

• Middle 80% GMAT score: 690-760

• Average undergraduate GPA: 3.5

• Middle 80% undergraduate GPA: 3.2-3.9

• Average work experience: 5 years

• Middle 80% work experience: 3-8 years

• Average age: 28

• Middle 80% age range: 25-31

Breakdown of Undergraduate Majors:Image

Previous Industries of Students:Image

Do you want to be part of CBS’s next class? Join our upcoming webinar, Get Accepted to CBS, on Thursday, September 7th at 10am PT/1pm ET or at 5pm PT/8pm ET to learn what you need to do to GET ACCEPTED!

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Related Resources:

The MBA Menu at Columbia Business School, a podcast interview

Columbia Business School MBA Application Essay Tips & Deadlines

The Applicants That Stand Out at Columbia Business School

Tags: MBA Admissions

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From the Military to Haas MBA [Episode 223]  [#permalink]

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New post 05 Sep 2017, 09:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: From the Military to Haas MBA [Episode 223]
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Military and older student attending the UC Berkeley Haas Full-time MBA program. Let’s hear his story.

Our guest today, David Middleton, graduated with a degree in mechanical engineering from the US Coast Guard Academy in 2003, when many of his classmates were in middle school. He served in different capacities in the Coast Guard, most recently as Operations Officer and Chief Pilot, responsible for over 100 aviation personnel and the management of 6 helicopters protecting 585 miles of coastline.

And he’s a FT student at Haas about to begin the second year of his MBA program. David, welcome to Admission Straight Talk!

Can you give us some background? How did you come to join the Coast Guard? [1:35]

I grew up in San Diego. I used to tell people I didn’t want to leave San Diego, and I didn’t want to join the military.

During a weeklong orientation at the Coast Guard Academy, I realized what a great opportunity it was. Leaving San Diego for CT was a big change… But I decided if I could pursue aviation I would do that.

When I learned how small the Coast Guard is and what their mission is, I was really excited.

What motivated you to get an MBA? [3:30]

It was pretty work-driven. I’ve been an operator for a long time. I’ve been flying helicopters, and I’d been on a ship as an engineer for a while.

I don’t know if most folks really understand the military – I describe it as an up-or-out system. You’re really looking to the next rank to take on greater responsibilities.

I saw education as the way to be promotable. And looking beyond the Coast Guard, I saw the MBA as preparation for whenever I did transition out.

You’ve been a helicopter pilot and chief pilot – so you’ve already done a lot in a managerial role, correct? [4:35]

Yes. In LA I did public affairs. When I was stationed in Alaska, I did a lot of aviation safety, which was good. And when I found myself in San Francisco, I was the instructor pilot – I took on a lot of leadership when my boss (the chief pilot) left unexpectedly.

What did you find most difficult about the b-school application process? [5:50]

Because I was in the job I was in at the time – everything. For context, I was on the last year of my assignment. I put in for a program that the Coast Guard has to send you to grad school. I felt rushed because I didn’t get my approval until October – too late for Round 1 deadlines.

When you interviewed, what was the most memorable or difficult question you were asked? [7:35]

A memorable question was “Have you ever had to make a difficult decision?”

Because of my work experience, it was a good question for me. I could tell a story about a rescue I’d done. In my job you’re making life and death decisions.

You’re at Haas now. What are the best aspects of the program for you? [9:45]

What stood out to me when I was applying – and now I’m living it – is the culture and diversity. People read about it, but it’s palpable.

The culture aspect – people are nice. I was used to a tightknit culture in the military and I wasn’t sure if I’d find that, but I really have.

What could be improved? [11:05]

The thing that stands out: it was challenging spacewise to do group projects. I’m excited to start class this week because the new building is opening.

You mentioned the tightknit collaborative culture in both the Coast Guard and Haas. What are some differences? [12:00]

For me, it’s the first time being a civilian again. Even though I’m still active duty, I’m not in uniform. In the Coast Guard it’s very structured – you refer to people by rank. At Haas, it’s more independent.

You’re older than the average Haas MBA student. Was it hard to be a student again? [13:00]

The average age is about 28, and I came in at 35. It was a little challenging to be a student. I’d initially thought that since I did well in undergrad I would be able to handle it.

I was commuting in because my wife works a couple of hours away – and I found I got behind pretty quickly. The material was tough and the pace was fast.

Was there anything else that surprised you about Haas? [14:35]

I always knew I’d be surrounded by great folks. But people are really unassuming, even people who’ve started their own companies or graduated at the top of their class from Ivy League schools. I’m more and more impressed.

Has the program changed your approach to leadership? [15:40]

The leadership component is a constant work in motion. In the military, you get a lot of leadership and responsibility right away. Now with the academic angle I find myself reflecting on those experiences.

In my Leading People class, we were talking about performance evaluations. In my last role, I did a lot of them, and I thought back about how I’d done them.

What are your plans for after graduation? [18:00]

When I applied to school it was a sponsored program through the Coast Guard – so I’ll return to the Coast Guard. At some point I’ll probably transition into a civilian role.

What will you miss about Haas? [19:30]

The people – but I hope I’ll continue to build on those friendships.

I’ll also miss being a student and having the time to dig into books and articles.

Do you have any tips for MBA applicants, especially those coming from the military? [20:20]

I probably should have started a year out.

If you reach out to the veterans club or active duty club at the program, they’re very helpful.

Have you experienced any special challenges coming from the military? [21:25]

The first thing is just being a student again.

From the military side, being a civilian is different: in the military, the chain of command is so structured.

What’s your favorite class? [22:40]

I enjoyed my core classes. And I really enjoyed my real estate elective. We worked on a great project locally where we designed affordable housing for teachers. It was a really fun problem solving project. I enjoyed the design thinking aspect of it – where you don’t know the answer.

Any favorite professors? [29:42]

I really liked my accounting professor and my real estate professor.

I’ve been blown away by their background and knowledge – and their willingness to meet with you.

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Related Links:

UC Berkeley Haas MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines

Up Close and Personal with Berkeley Haas at the 2017 AIGAC Conference

A Veteran’s Transition to Tuck, an interview

Leadership in Admissions, a free guide

Related Shows:

Exploring the Haas MBA: An Interview with Peter Johnson

An NYU Stern Grad and Strat Consultant Helping Vets Get Into School

Breaking Some HBS Stereotypes: An Interview with Ben Faw

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Last Call! Get Accepted to Columbia Business School  [#permalink]

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New post 05 Sep 2017, 10:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: Last Call! Get Accepted to Columbia Business School
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There are still a few seats available for Get Accepted to Columbia! In this special one-hour webinar, Accepted founder Linda Abraham will share a proven strategy for application success, and guide you through each part of the CBS application.

When you’re applying to a program as competitive as CBS, it’s easy to be intimidated. But you don’t need to reinvent the wheel here! You’ll benefit from our decades of admissions expertise as you learn specific, action-oriented strategies that will help you create a stand-out application.

The webinar is free, but you must register. Hurry – don’t miss it!

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Tags: MBA Admissions

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London Business School MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines  [#permalink]

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New post 06 Sep 2017, 09:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: London Business School MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines
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London Business School boasts one of the most diverse student bodies, with 90% of its 425 students hailing from a total of 69 countries outside of England. If you are looking for a globally focused MBA program in a city bursting with culture, finance, and industry, then LBS is certainly a program to consider. My tips are below in blue.

Essays:

Essay 1. What are your post-MBA goals and how will your prior experience and the London Business School programme contribute towards these? (500 words)

This is a mainstay in the LBS application, a straightforward career goals question. You need to demonstrate in the first paragraph that you know what you would like to be doing after the MBA, and it had better excite LBS. They are looking for applicants with a global outlook, committed to challenging the status quo and making an impact on business.

In general, I find that this essay needs to apply one-third of the word limit to defining your goal, one-third to summarizing what you have gained from your career and how it has prepared you for your goals, and one-third to how the London Business School education will complement that experience to propel you to your goals. Please note:  1/3, 1/3, 1/3 are guidelines, not rigid rules.

Essay 2. (Optional)

Is there any other information you believe the Admissions Committee should know about you and your application to London Business School? (500 words)

LBS has allotted additional space for this essay this year, which is a subtle hint that they are open to hearing more from applicants here. I always advocate writing the optional essay, but in this case I am highly recommending it since the one required essay will leave you little space to share details about your past experiences.

In particular, examples of your leadership, changing the status quo, making an impact, or navigating cultural differences would make great use of this space if you didn’t have room for them in the required essay.

If you would like professional guidance with your London Business School MBA application, please consider Accepted’s MBA essay editing and  MBA admissions consulting or our MBA Application Packages, which include advising, editing, interview coaching, and a resume edit for the LBS application. 

London Business School 2018 MBA Application Deadlines:

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All application deadlines are 17:00 UK time. All Admissions Committee decisions are communicated via email and will be sent on the relevant deadline day by 23:30pm UK time.

***Disclaimer: Information is subject to change. Please check with individual programs to verify the essay questions, instructions and deadlines.***

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Jennifer Bloom has been a consultant with Accepted for 19 years and is a Certified Professional Resume Writer (CPRW). She is an expert at crafting application materials that truly differentiate you from the rest of the driven applicant pool. If you would like help with your application, Jennifer can suggest a number of options that work with any budget. Want Jennifer to help you get accepted? Click here!

Related Resources:

Why MBA?, a free guide to writing about your MBA goals

• Why London Business School Might be the School for You!, podcast episode

• Diversity and International Innovation at LBS

Tags: MBA Admissions

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Oxford Saïd MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines  [#permalink]

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New post 08 Sep 2017, 09:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: Oxford Saïd MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines
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Oxford Said expects its graduates to address the world’s great challenges, such as energy and food and water security. Whether such challenges are one’s actual focus, the work of a business professional will inevitably overlap with such issues. This reality leads the adcom to seek individuals who understand integrity, who value the program’s effort to “burst the business bubble” and bring in non-business perspectives and disciplines, and who are ready to become dynamic leaders into a precarious and uncertain future.

Showing awareness in your essay(s) of these concerns and interests will help you portray fit with the program while highlighting your distinctive attributes.

Essays:

1. Consider a statistic or trend that shocks you. Why it is important to you and how could it be changed for the better? (Maximum 500 words)

You might at first reasonably think that you should choose a statistic strategically linked to your career goals in some way.  Well, maybe.  Or maybe not.  (You are offered a short space in the online application to present your goals.) What’s most important – and it’s appropriate to take the adcom at face value and not project hidden expectations – is to pick a statistic that both shocks and has some genuine meaning to you.  That may be related to your career, or it may be completely un-related.  The key is that it be meaningful to you.

Why?  Think about Oxford’s stated values.  They appreciate people who are engaged in the world, widely, as it exists, not just in their chosen, focused niche.  

This essay also reveals a lot about how you approach issues and situations, it reveals your thinking.  What triggers your shock and dismay? In determining what actions could be taken to address the issue, how do you approach it?  Where do you look for answers, how do you synthesize your findings?  How do you assess the viability of possible solutions?

In structuring this essay, keep it simple.  Start with the statistic and describe why it’s meaningful to you.  The best essays in answer to this question will convey a freshness of inquiry; reveal some aspect of your interests, concerns, and perspective through the choice of topic and why it’s meaningful; and your openness to examining steps that could be taken – you needn’t have the perfect answer wrapped up in a bow; you should share the process of exploration.  

2. Is there anything not covered in the application form which you would like the Admissions Committee to know about you? (Maximum 250 words)

The prompt implies that the adcom wants to get to know you as a person. So, take a holistic review of your application – resume, online form, and above essay – and then consider what other aspects of your life and/or experience would be worth sharing in this essay to further illuminate your candidacy. Your application form will likely include brief references to hobbies, community involvements, etc., along with work details.  You can still write about such things here in more depth – after all, the motivation and the details are not covered in the application. Another possibility would be to describe a pivotal/formative professional experience and really show its influence on you – meaningful reflection, not just the facts of the situation. Keep the essay concrete – but DO present insight and DO reflect.  You need to show that you have something to say, to bring to the table.

If you would like professional guidance with your Oxford Said MBA application, check out Accepted’s MBA essay editing and MBA admissions consulting or our MBA Application Packages, which include advising, editing, interview coaching, and a resume edit for the Oxford Said MBA application.

Deadlines:

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***Disclaimer: Information is subject to change. Please check with individual programs to verify the essay questions, instructions and deadlines.***

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Cindy Tokumitsu has advised hundreds of successful applicants, helping them gain acceptance to top MBA and EMBA programs in her 15+ years with Accepted. She would love to help you too. Want Cindy to help you get Accepted? Click here to get in touch!
 

Related Resources:

Different Dimensions of Diversity, a podcast episode

4 Ways to Show How You’ll Contribute in the Future

• “I’m Smart, Really I Am!” Proving Character Traits in your Essays

Tags: MBA Admissions

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6 Tips for MBA Applicants with a Criminal Record  [#permalink]

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New post 10 Sep 2017, 09:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: 6 Tips for MBA Applicants with a Criminal Record
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It’s your job to demonstrate to the adcom that you stand out from the applicant pool and are exactly the person they want in their next MBA class. In this series, you’ll learn how to dig deep to unearth your unique character traits, experiences, skills, and talents and bring them to the forefront of your application, so that when the adcom pick up your file, they’re hooked from the very first moment.

Your MBA profile is nearly perfect: You’ve got great stats and an impressive resume. You’re friendly, personable, and a fantastic leader. There’s just one little glitch: your criminal record.

A criminal record does work as a strike against you, but it’s not necessarily an insurmountable problem. Here are some points to consider:

1. How severe was your crime?

Not all crimes are created equal, and adcoms will take the severity of your crime into consideration. Did you shoplift from the dollar bin at Target? Did a wild night in college put disorderly conduct on your record? Minor misdemeanors like these are more likely to be excused than more serious crimes like drunk driving, sexual harassment, or tax evasion.

2. When did you commit the crime?

A minor crime committed 5+ years ago (like when you were a dumb teenager or college kid) will be forgiven sooner than a crime you committed last week (as a responsible adult applying to business school).

3. Are you being honest?



You’re doing the smart thing by putting your record out there in the open. Better that you present the information yourself then for the adcoms to stumble upon your dark secret on their own. Background checks happen; if you don’t fess up, you won’t look good.

4. Are you being direct and to-the-point?



Your approach should be direct and succinct. Take responsibility for your actions, express regret, and then discuss what you’ve learned and how you’ve grown from the situation. Don’t be defensive or apologetic. Leave the drama and tears at home, tell your story, and move on. And don’t divulge more details than are necessary – this isn’t Confession and this isn’t your best friend who wants to hear your every move.

5. Are you discussing the issue in the correct spot on your application?



You can address your criminal record in an essay that asks you to describe a personal flaw or weakness, or, if that doesn’t seem appropriate, you can disclose past indiscretions in an optional essay. Once this information has been presented in your written application, I would not bring it up again in an interview unless you are specifically asked about it.

6. Is it a deal-breaker?

If the crime you committed was especially serious, it’s possible that it could lead to rejection, regardless of how pristine the rest of your application is. Violent crimes or money-related crimes, for example, are potentially insurmountable. Marks on your academic record (like cheating) may also pose a threat to your acceptance. You are expected to be a trusted contributor to the b-school environment – and beyond – and such crimes will severely detract from your potential to do so.

Remember, your criminal record may not look good, but it also may not doom your MBA dream. Just make sure you present this information in an honest, straightforward way, and express how you’ve learned and grown from the experience. Don’t overshare, don’t whine, and don’t apologize – we all have pasts, and our pasts don’t always need to define our futures.

Read the complete 9 Secrets to Standing Out in Your MBA Application series for more tips on how to create a compelling application that highlights your unique strengths, character traits, and talents.

For personalized advice tailored just for you, check out our MBA admissions consulting and editing services and work one-on-one with a pro who will help you discover your competitive advantage and use it to get ACCEPTED.

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Related Resources:

5 Fatal Flaws to Avoid in Your MBA Application Essays, a free guide

Can You Get Accepted After Doing Something Stupid?

Resilience in the Face of Failure

Tags: MBA Admissions

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Can a Grad Consultant Help You Succeed?  [#permalink]

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New post 10 Sep 2017, 10:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: Can a Grad Consultant Help You Succeed?
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Whatever your field and interests, when you’re applying for a masters or PhD, the process can be challenging. Top masters programs in competitive fields are extremely selective – and PhD programs might accept as few as two to three people in a given specialty. Your application needs to be both strong and strategic.

A consultant can help guide you and support you in some meaningful ways:

1. Provide guidance on strategy. When you’re targeting competitive programs in competitive fields, having a strong application strategy is crucial. Your consultant can help you analyze your profile – and help you make sure you’re applying to the right programs for you.

2. Reduce your stress. There’s no getting around it – applying to grad school can be stressful, especially since you’re probably balancing a lot of other responsibilities as well (school, work, family, etc). Consultants have been through the application process before and can help you create a workable timeline, stay on track, and keep your anxiety in check.

3. Help you represent yourself effectively. Your consultant can provide coaching to help you put your best foot forward in your application – including your statement of purpose, personal history, and CV.

When you’re looking for a consultant, look for someone you’ll be able to work with effectively. Is the consultant’s style a good match for your needs? How will you be able to communicate – by email, phone, Skype, etc? Has the consultant worked with applicants in your field before?

Accepted has consultants on staff with a diverse range of expertise across grad fields. Each year, we coach applicants to acceptances at top masters and PhD programs in STEM fields, the social sciences, and the humanities. Contact us today to be matched with your consultant!

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Related Resources:

Get Your Game On: Prepping for Your Grad School Application, a free guide

Top Graduate School Admissions Directors Share the Inside Scoop

4 Application Strategy Tips: Stand Out AND Fit In

Tags: Admissions Consulting, Grad School Admissions, Law School Admissions, MBA Admissions, Medical School Admissions

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UNC Kenan-Flagler MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines  [#permalink]

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FROM Accepted.com Blog: UNC Kenan-Flagler MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines
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Are you a team leader? Are you committed to sustainable enterprise? Are you seeking resources and intellectual capital needed to shape both business and government? Are you a motivated, goal-oriented, innovative individual? UNC Kenan-Flagler adcoms are interested in seeing your multi-dimensional personality and capabilities. Your challenge: Prove that your goals mesh with the school’s goals and that your talents will contribute to the program’s collaborative nature.

My tips are in blue below.

The Kenan-Flagler Business School at University of North Carolina has one required essay and three optional essays.

Essays:

Essay 1. (Required)

Please describe your short and long term goals post-MBA. Explain how your professional experience has shaped these goals, why this career option appeals to you, and how you arrived at the decision that now is the time and the MBA is the appropriate degree. Additionally, please briefly address a backup plan should your short-term goal not come to fruition for any reason. (500 words maximum)

What do you see yourself doing immediately upon graduation and what would you like to do ten years from now? Describe why this path attracts you. What experiences have convinced you to pursue it? Why do you need an MBA, especially one with UNC’s approach to business education, to proceed down your chosen path? And then what’s your Plan B? If you are aiming for Goldman Sachs and a career in investment banking, would Plan B be a similar position with, let’s say, Bank of America?  If you are aiming for McKinsey, Bain, or BCG, what would your Plan B be? Perhaps a position in a leadership rotation program? Or would it be working for a company like Deloitte or A. T. Kearney?

Your Plan B needs to be at least as achievable as Plan A – if not more so. It still needs to lead you in the direction of your ten-year goals.

Check out our free guide, Why MBA?, for more tips on writing about post-MBA goals.

Essay 2. (Optional)

What personal qualities or life experiences distinguish you from other applicants? How do these qualities or experiences equip you to contribute to UNC Kenan-Flagler? (300 words maximum)

Everyone has a story. What’s yours? What makes you tick? What would you like the admissions committee to know about you – you the human being, the individual? What hobbies and experiences will differentiate you from the IT guy, consultant, real estate developer, or banker that the adcom just read about? How will your perspective contribute to the classroom and community at Kenan-Flagler? For more on this topic, please see Dimensions of Diversity.

Essay 3. (Optional)

If your standardized test scores are low, or if you have not had coursework in core business subjects (calculus, microeconomics, statistics, financial accounting), please tell us how you plan to prepare yourself for the quantitative rigor of the MBA curriculum. (300 words maximum)

This is pretty straightforward. Just answer it. You may also want to highlight professional preparation that you have already had in quantitative areas.

Kenan Flagler explicitly says that it’s important for its students to have a “working knowledge” of financial accounting, statistics, microeconomics, and calculus.  If you don’t have it, acquire it.

Essay 4. (Optional)

Is there any other information you would like to share that is not presented elsewhere in the application? (300 words maximum)

My favorite: The optional essay. A gift allowing you to give the adcom one more reason to admit you.

If you would like professional guidance with your UNC Kenan-Flagler MBA application, check out Accepted’s MBA essay editing and MBA admissions consulting or our MBA Application Packages,  which include advising, editing, interview coaching, and a resume edit for the Kenan-Flagler application.

UNC Kenan-Flagler 2017-18 Application Deadlines:

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***Disclaimer: Information is subject to change. Please check with individual programs to verify the essay questions, instructions and deadlines.***

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By Linda Abraham, president and founder of Accepted.com and co-author of the definitive book on MBA admissions, MBA Admission for Smarties: The No-Nonsense Guide to Acceptance at Top Business SchoolsWhy Do You Need an MBA?, free guide

Get Accepted to B-School with Low Stats, on-demand webinar

• 5 Elements to Telling an Attention-Grabbing Story

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Learn How To Answer MBA Essay Questions  [#permalink]

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New post 12 Sep 2017, 09:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: Learn How To Answer MBA Essay Questions
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By the time you sit down to work on your b-school applications, you’ve already laid much of the groundwork for your candidacy, and a lot of the pieces of your profile are already set. (There’s no going back in time to change your undergrad record!) But there’s one piece of the application that you have full control over: your essay. That can be intimidating.

<<Get your copy of Top MBA Essay Questions: How to Answer Them Right now!>>

But it’s also exciting. After all, your application essays are your chance to introduce yourself to the adcom – to explain your goals, to show what matters to you. In short, to help the adcom see you as the unique person you are: a person who belongs at their school.

Building on our experience coaching applicants like you to success at elite MBA programs, we’ve created our free guide, Top MBA Essay Questions: How to Answer Them Right. The guide is filled with specific and actionable advice straight from our admissions experts, breaking down each of the essay questions asked by top schools.

With so much depending on your b-school essays, why would you risk a flawed strategy? Especially when you can get our consultants’ expert analysis of each b-school’s questions – for free.

Read Top MBA Essay Questions: How to Answer Them Right today.

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_________________

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Learn How to Answer MBA Essay Questions  [#permalink]

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New post 12 Sep 2017, 12:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: Learn How to Answer MBA Essay Questions
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By the time you sit down to work on your b-school applications, you’ve already laid much of the groundwork for your candidacy, and a lot of the pieces of your profile are already set. (There’s no going back in time to change your undergrad record!) But there’s one piece of the application that you have full control over: your essay. That can be intimidating.

<<Get your copy of Top MBA Essay Questions: How to Answer Them Right now!>>

But it’s also exciting. After all, your application essays are your chance to introduce yourself to the adcom – to explain your goals, to show what matters to you. In short, to help the adcom see you as the unique person you are: a person who belongs at their school.

Building on our experience coaching applicants like you to success at elite MBA programs, we’ve created our free guide, Top MBA Essay Questions: How to Answer Them Right. The guide is filled with specific and actionable advice straight from our admissions experts, breaking down each of the essay questions asked by top schools.

With so much depending on your b-school essays, why would you risk a flawed strategy? Especially when you can get our consultants’ expert analysis of each b-school’s questions – for free.

Read Top MBA Essay Questions: How to Answer Them Right today.

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Tags: MBA Admissions

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Georgetown McDonough MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines  [#permalink]

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FROM Accepted.com Blog: Georgetown McDonough MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines
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One major change to Georgetown McDonough’s application this year: A new essay prompt with a little more focus, but with the same word limit as last year’s question. The video question is basically the same as last year.

About a year ago I interviewed Georgetown McDonough’s Dean of Admissions, Shari Hubert, for our Admission Straight Talk podcast. While the main topic of the podcast is the evolving nature of the MBA job search, Dean Hubert did discuss the application changes and the reasons for them in the podcast. I highly recommend you listen to the entire interview. However, if you don’t have time for the 40-minute interview, make time for the portion discussing last year’s application, which starts at 28:30.

My comments are in blue below.

Essays:

We want to hear your story. When responding to our required essays, be authentic and take time to reflect on your goals and past experiences. Craft a response that explains how these experiences led you to pursue an MBA.

Essay 1:

Please answer the following essay question in 500 words or less: “Describe a defining moment when you were challenged and exceeded expectations.” The moment can be a professional or personal one. If personal, then please also include how it had an impact on your professional development.

This question is looking for an experience where you show resilience and strength of character and where the experience was profoundly influential. Give them what they’re looking for.

Here’s a possible approach to answering this question: Start with the challenge and then describe how you dealt with it and how the results of your actions exceeded expectations. Finally, relate how this experience influenced you in a defining, meaningful way. I’m not talking about a momentary celebration, award, or bonus. If it’s “defining” it had to have long-term and significant impact. Ideally show how you are still learning the lessons you learned as a result of this experience today. And if you chose a personal experience, make sure you describe the experience’s impact on you as a professional.

<< For expert guidance with your Georgetown essays, check out our MBA Application Package!>>

Video Essay:

We ask that you introduce yourself to your cohort in one minute or less. The Admissions Committee would like for you to appear in person during part of your video, and we strongly encourage you to speak outside of the experiences we can read on your resume. Use this video as an opportunity to bring life to your application. Please upload it to an accessible website (such as Youtube, Vimeo, Youku, or Tudou), and submit the direct video URL into your online application. Please note that we cannot accept private or password-protected videos. For more instructions, view our Video Essay Guide.

This is one of those questions when you are not supposed to think about the fact that your essay is being read by admissions people. Address your peers, your professional network to-be, and your future friends i.e. your classmates. And you’re supposed to assume that your peers have read your resume. You certainly don’t want to bore them by telling them what they just read.

What would you want them to know about you?

Your future friends (and the adcom) are looking for more than just spreadsheet skills or professional mojo here, although they might creep in. Balance personal and professional. As Georgetown says, “bring life to your application” with this video. If you used Essay 1 to discuss a professional experience, use the video essay to reveal something that is not work-related. If you used Essay 1 for a personal example of resilience, then I still wouldn’t focus exclusively on work here, because you are addressing your peers and classmates here.

Take the time to sketch out what you want to say in these 60 seconds. I don’t recommend that you write it out and memorize it, but definitely have a plan. And then practice. It’s really strange to speak to a camera. The camera gives no feedback, has no affect, and is completely wooden in responsiveness. You may be tempted to behave similarly. Bad idea. Either practice by yourself and view the videos of your practices so that you improve, or ask an encouraging friend to film you so that at least you have your friend’s reactions to respond to.

What is the Georgetown admissions committee looking for in this video? They are trying to imagine you as a member of their community. They also want to see how you present yourself without going to the trouble and expense of an interview. They want to assess your presence: how will you appear to a potential employer?

Optional Essays:

1. If you are not currently employed full-time, use this essay to provide information about your current activities. (250 words or fewer)

Show them that you are using this period of unemployment to acquire new skills, contribute to your community, or grow in some way.

2. Please provide any information that you would like to add to your application that you have not otherwise included. (500 words or fewer)

Please see “Optional Essays: When and How to Write Them.”

Re-Applicant Essay: Required for re-applicants.

How have you strengthened your candidacy since your last application? We are particularly interested in hearing about how you have grown professionally and personally. (500 words or fewer)

This is a key question (whether asked explicitly or not) for all reapplicants to any MBA program. What has changed? How are you “new and improved” since last year – when you were rejected? Georgetown does you the favor of providing this explicit prompt so you can address this question while retaining the ability to address the main essay.

If you would like professional guidance with your Georgetown McDonough School MBA application, check out Accepted’s MBA essay editing and MBA admissions consulting or our MBA Application Packages, which include advising, editing, interview coaching, and a resume edit for the Georgetown McDonough MBA application.

Georgetown McDonough 2017-18 MBA Application Deadlines:

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***Disclaimer: Information is subject to change. Please check with individual programs to verify the essay questions, instructions and deadlines.***

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By Linda Abraham, president and founder of Accepted.com and co-author of the definitive book on MBA admissions, MBA Admission for Smarties: The No-Nonsense Guide to Acceptance at Top Business SchoolsLearn How to Demonstrate Leadership in Your Application, free guide

What You Need to Know About Finding a Job Post-MBA [Episode 164]

School-Specific MBA Application Essay Tips

Tags: MBA Admissions

The post Georgetown McDonough MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines appeared first on Accepted Admissions Blog.
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________

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Accepted ~ The Premier Admissions Consultancy
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