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Meet Dr. Nadia Afridi, Plastic Surgeon, Recent Columbia EMBA, and Mom  [#permalink]

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New post 08 May 2018, 09:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: Meet Dr. Nadia Afridi, Plastic Surgeon, Recent Columbia EMBA, and Mom
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Our guest today, Dr. Nadia Afridi earned her bachelors and MD in Canada and then did a residency in plastic surgery at Dalhousie University. She also earned her Executive MBA from Columbia in 2017.

Can you tell us about your background?  Where you grew up? What do you like to do for fun? [1:09]

I was born and raised in Canada, the only child of physicians who immigrated to Canada in the 1970s, so I have been surrounded by medicine my whole life. As a result, I knew a lot about medicine and decided to pursue it and did most of my training in Canada. Once I did my residency I wanted to do my fellowship training with a doctor I admired, so I moved to Nashville, TN and worked for a year there, and then did another fellowship with a non-profit, traveling all over the world doing cleft lip, cleft palate, and burn reconstruction surgery for children. That was a hard year emotionally, but so satisfying to be able to help so tangibly.

You did your undergrad and medical education including a residency in plastic surgery in Canada. You then did you one year of sub-specialty training in the U.S., focusing on reconstructive and aesthetic breast surgery. You are now a member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons and associate fellow of the American College of Surgeons. Was it hard professionally to move to the U.S. from Canada? [2:56]

Compared to what many people who immigrated to the United States go through it was relatively easy. Almost all of my education was already recognized when I came south of the border. So it wasn’t like my MD wasn’t recognized. I didn’t have to redo any training, but anytime you make a major move to a new place without an established network it is somewhat challenging, but it was doable. It was more the practical, business aspects as opposed to the regulatory and educational ones.

What was hardest aspect of your medical education? [4:28]

That you spend so much time before you become even remotely employable, which is a bit daunting. A lot of people get exhausted just thinking about the path ahead of you. I just tried to take it step by step, and with staging, there is initially more classroom and then progressing to a clinical environment. Another one of the hardest parts is choosing your specialty and then of course getting into it.

Let’s turn to your experience as an EMBA student. Why did you want to add an MBA to your MD? [5:50]

I had been in practice here awhile in New York and it was going relatively well. In some ways I had reached a professional plateau, and yearned to learn something new and completely different from medicine, so I decided to see if I could meet the standards of admission to Columbia. I knew for sure I would be able to extract an ROI from the MBA degree by streamlining the way I ran my business, but also I thought long term I would be ready to move onto a different phase of my career, and the skills, network, and contacts from the MBA would serve me well at that point.

CBS offers 3 NY-based EMBA options (EMBA-NY Saturday, EMBA-NY: Fri/Sat; and EMBA Americas) Why did you choose what you chose? [7:47]

I chose the Fri/Sat program and probably wouldn’t have done the program if not for that option. Every second weekend you go to school all day Friday and Saturday. What I liked about that schedule was that I knew I would have to compromise other aspects of my life (family and professional), and with the Fri/Sat schedule I would be compromising a little bit of both, but not compromising either completely.

What did you find most difficult in the EMBA application process? [9:48]

Having to take the GMAT, which I just found out is now optional. It really forced my brain to move back into a different mode. The other thing I found was the essays are really challenging, but helpful and enlightening, since they force you to take a personal inventory on what you’ve done and what you want to do. The essays help you analyze your successes, where you’ve gone astray, and where you want to go in the future. It was very empowering.

What did you like best about Columbia’s program? [11:32]

Columbia is an amazing world-class institution, and as a result there are world class professors who truly are inspirational, and make a lot of effort to ensure we are inspired in the process, and the other thing is that a great institution attracts great candidates, so your cohort is exceptional. It really is about who you go to school with.

What can be improved? [14:10]

It would be nice if it was a little more affordable and accessible. All of these excellent institutions come at a premium.

How did you manage a full-time practice, the EMBA program, and being a mom? [14:57]

I chose the Fri/Sat program so I still had every other weekend with my family, and would often find ways to put kids to bed and stay up and take advantage of the quiet time to study. I would also find opportunities in the work day to let’s say pull out stats to prepare for the tests. It was always at the back of my mind to find ways to study. I was a mature student, so I found I was productive and effective with my time. I was also particular about attending all the classes and really being present. Knowing you don’t have time to waste makes you more efficient.

Are you glad you did the EMBA? [17:17]

Absolutely. It was a fantastic experience, and opened my eyes to a lot of things in the world I didn’t know about coming from a medical home and doing a medical education. Learning how the business world works was really enlightening.

What are your plans for the future? [17:54]

I joke and say I am currently working on three startups (my three children!!), but have decided that for now I am focusing on making sure they are doing well and supported through school. Once I feel I have helped them out, we’ll see where things go. I see something entrepreneurial in my future.

Any tips for MBA or med school applicants? [19:17]

For med school applicants, put your nose to the grindstone and make sure you pursue it for the right reasons and that it will truly make you happy. I think some people see medicine and don’t pursue it for the reason for loving the profession, which can make for difficulties and burn out long term. If it is your passion, work really hard.

With the EMBA application, some professional and life maturity is very helpful. Having a little more experience in the work environment can be very valuable when you go to business school since you have more to contribute and can apply what you learn.

What would you have liked me to ask you? [20:50]

The most valuable lesson I had from my MBA. In business school we talked a lot about assets, and one of my professors emphasized the importance of one particular asset, which is time. How you manage your time is critical, since it is very finite, limited, and precious, and so I learned to allocate my time to things I value and cherish. Surprisingly it was the best lesson from business school.

I maximize my return on time by constantly taking inventory in my mind of what is important. Sometimes those things get shuffled around. There are always certain tasks that have to get done, so prioritize, allocate and be attentive. Prioritize constantly. If you find a roadblock, you need to reverse, which is critical. Being able to be flexible with the big picture goal of priorities is the best way to make sure you apply time effectively to things you care about.

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Related Links:

Dr. Nadia Afridi’s site

Columbia Executive MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines

Ace the EMBA: Expert Advice for the Rising Executive, a free guide

MBA Admissions Services 

Related Shows: 

The MBA Menu at Columbia Business School

Pediatrician and Social Entrepreneur: Meet Dr. Anne Steptoe

Meet Dr. Akshat Kumar, Wharton MBA ‘19

The Importance of Teaching Management in Medical School

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

The post Meet Dr. Nadia Afridi, Plastic Surgeon, Recent Columbia EMBA, and Mom [Episode 258] 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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Co-Author of: MBA Admission for Smarties: The No-Nonsense Guide to Acceptance at Top Business Schools

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What GMAT Score Do I Need to Get Accepted to Top MBA Programs?  [#permalink]

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New post 10 May 2018, 09:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: What GMAT Score Do I Need to Get Accepted to Top MBA Programs?
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Do you need a perfect score on your GMAT to gain acceptance to a top-tier business school? No. But you definitely need your score to be high enough so that your application is seriously considered and so that the rest of your application isn’t fighting an uphill battle to overcome a sub-par GMAT score.

So, is your GMAT score good enough? To figure this out, you’ll need to ask yourself the following questions:

1. What MBA Applicant Group Am I Part Of?

Who you are matters because admissions decisions don’t follow a strict formula or algorithm based entirely on numbers. You need to evaluate your score in the context of your demographic profile.

For example, if you’re a guy from India in the IT field who just spent the last five years sitting at a desk coding and crunching numbers, then you’re going to need a more competitive GMAT score than if you’re a gal from Chile who spent the last five years working for a energy-related non-profit that shuttled back and forth between Tierra del Fuego and Antarctica.

Again, even our Chilean social enterprising world explorer will need a score high enough to get her application looked at, but once she makes it past that point, she’ll have no trouble keeping their attention.

2. What Does the Rest of My MBA Application Look Like?

It is possible to recover from a not-so-ideal GMAT score, but that is if the rest of your application is compelling and as close to flawless as is humanly possible.

If you have a stellar GPA, stunning application essays, amazing letters of recommendation, and a resume that shows that you’ve worked hard and served as a leader of impact and consequence, you’re on your way to overcoming a low GMAT. Then you’re in a position to prove to the adcom that you’re a fantastic candidate and that the GMAT is just not your thing (again, it still needs to be good enough to get your app looked at).

3. Which MBA Programs Am I Applying To?

It goes without saying that some GMAT scores will be highly competitive at some programs and not even close to competitive at others. To see if your score is “good enough,” you need to visit your target schools’ websites and see what their GMAT range is. Don’t just look at the average; the range will give you a better idea of how low they’ll go before weeding out an application based on GMAT score alone.

4. What is My GMAT Score?

If you scored above the 80th percentile on both the verbal and quant sections of the GMAT then you should consider yourself “good to go” to apply to highly ranked MBA programs (assuming that the rest of your application is top-notch as well). If you received lower than that, your score doesn’t necessarily mean that you need to retake the GMAT, but it does mean that you need to look at your GMAT in the larger scheme of things and consider retaking if you feel your profile needs it and you are aiming for those top programs.

Once you’ve asked yourself these questions and done some serious soul-searching, you’ll have a much better idea of what your next steps should be – going ahead and applying to your target b-schools this year, waiting and applying to your top choices next year (or even the following year) while you work on improving your profile, or applying this year, but to lower ranked programs, etc.

Last but not least, be in touch if you need help analyzing your stats and determining where and when you should apply to b-school. We’re here to help!

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Related Resources:

• 5 Killer GMAT Prep Tips, a free webinar

Should You Retake The GMAT? [Short Video]

• How to Choose Between the GMAT and GRE and Start Preparing

Tags: MBA Admissions

The post What GMAT Score Do I Need to Get Accepted to Top MBA Programs? 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

_________________

Linda Abraham
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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4 Qualities Top MBA Programs Seek  [#permalink]

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New post 11 May 2018, 09:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: 4 Qualities Top MBA Programs Seek
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Business schools aren’t looking for intelligent robots!

There are four main qualities that top b-schools look for when reviewing MBA applications. If you’re aiming for the top 10, then you’ll want to make sure not only that you possess these 4 qualities, but that you’ve highlighted them in your application.

1. Leadership/Management Capabilities

Demonstrating general interpersonal impact isn’t enough: top candidates need to show strong evidence of leadership experience and potential. Did you take on leadership positions in clubs, sports teams, and service organizations? You need to express that you are the type of person who will earn the respect of those around you so that they’ll be eager to follow your lead. In your application, resume, and interview, come up with concrete examples that show how you wielded authority with skill and integrity.

2. Drive/Ambition

Applicants must show evidence of longstanding drive for success in their applications, resumes, and interviews. Did you push yourself to succeed inside and outside the classroom in college? Do you have an ambitious vision for your career path? B-schools want students who will succeed in the business world once they graduate – if you prove that you have drive/ambition, then you’ll stand out as someone who they want in their classrooms, and beyond.

3. Interpersonal Impact

“Brains on a stick” just won’t cut it at business school and then later on in the business world. You also need to be dynamic and likable. You need to be able to work well on a team and gain the respect of your teammates, not to mention later on, your employers and employees. You can show the adcoms your interpersonal impact by highlighting your involvement in teams at work as well as in clubs, sports, or other socially driven activities. Additionally, choose recommenders who know you well and who will attest to this attribute.

4. Problem Solving Skills

This is probably the most important quality, at least initially. Schools want the types of students that exclusive consulting firms like McKinsey would take interest in, and that type of student is an expert problem solver. Everyone working in firms like McKinsey needs to be adept at solving a range of “problems” – top schools recognize this and seek out students who would eventually be an excellent fit at these top firms.

Do you need help highlighting these essential qualities in your MBA application? We’re here to help! Contact us so we can provide the one-on-one counseling you need to put together the highest-impact b-school application.

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Related Resources:

Leadership in Admissions, a free guide

“I’m Smart, Really I Am!” How to Prove Character Traits in Essays

MBA Applicants: How to Get Accepted in 2018-19

Tags: MBA Admissions

The post 4 Qualities Top MBA Programs Seek 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

_________________

Linda Abraham
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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Not Sure If You Should Retake the GMAT?  [#permalink]

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New post 13 May 2018, 09:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: Not Sure If You Should Retake the GMAT?
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There’s still time to register for our upcoming webinar, The GMAT: Low Scores, Retaking & Strategies for Success, and learn how to view your scores from the adcom’s perspective and to answer that painful, nagging question: Should you retake the GMAT?

But time is running out – register now.

Register Now:

 

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Tags: MBA Admissions

The post Not Sure If You Should Retake the GMAT? 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

_________________

Linda Abraham
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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MIT Sloan Fellow, User Experience Expert, and Busy Mom  [#permalink]

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New post 15 May 2018, 09:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: MIT Sloan Fellow, User Experience Expert, and Busy Mom
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Show Summary
Katie Luby will be graduating this spring from the MIT Sloan Fellows program, and can’t say enough good things about the experience. Coming from Salesforce, and with an anthropology and design educational background, business school was a whole new animal. Katie feels her experience at MIT Sloan Fellows will uniquely enhance her work as a human-centered design practitioner, especially in the areas of technology implementation, innovation, and leadership. While she has gained many tools to help her in her work, the most meaningful aspect of her time at MIT Sloan has been the relationships she has developed with the other Fellows. With a diverse cohort from all around the world, the exposure to new ways of thinking and working has been unparalleled. Add in the fact that her 8 ½ year old daughter has been with her throughout the experience, and she wouldn’t change a thing.

Show Notes
Our guest today, is Katie Luby, MIT Sloan Fellow, MBA student, and Innovation and Transformation Director, Design Architect at Salesforce. Katie started out studying movies, earned her master’s in design from the Illinois Institute of Technology, and worked in tech for companies like Motorola, Sapient, and Razorfish before landing at Salesforce, where she has been since 2013, except for her current stay in Boston as an MIT Sloan Fellow.

Can you tell us about your background? Where you grew up? What do you like to do for fun? [2:10]
I am from Chicago, born and raised in Evanston. It is a great city to be in, with lots of swimming, bike riding, great culture and museums. During most of my free time I try to get outside and enjoy some of the cultural offerings. In Boston there is also great culture, and a little smaller city which is nice, and I am really looking forward to spring right now since the weather has been “interesting.”

You started out studying film and cinematography and then did a Masters in Design. How did you go from the movies to design? [3:17]
I feel like I have a pretty windy path, but also feel like everything I have done really has built on itself. In undergrad I studied anthropology, so I’ve always been interested in the study of people and behaviors and culture. Coming out of school, applied anthropology didn’t really exist in the field – you really had to go to a tribe to study, we really couldn’t study ourselves, and between the time I graduated and then got a masters suddenly ethnography was being used as a tool with all sorts of design problems, business problems, cultural problems – so that fell into place. Between my undergrad and masters I worked on documentary films and film production. I spent some time in San Francisco and then came back to Chicago, working with a lot of really smart creative people in advertising. I worked in teams to make advertising ideas come alive, sourcing materials, building things, conceptualizing ideas in real form, dealing with budgets, and problem solving. I never considered myself a creative, but loved the idea of design and art direction looking to solve a problem. When I found the institute of design, one of just a few programs in the country that accepts people in their masters program without an undergrad degree in design, I learned theory and practice around how to solve problems with a design perspective. A hot topic now is design thinking, and it is really the perspective of who the users are and what the issue at hand is. Are we looking at the right problem? Coming up with creative and elegant solutions to meet that need? With technology, we think about what’s feasible, with a lens of why and how we should implement technology, which is important for businesses to consider. We always hear, “We need an app,” but what do they need an app for? Is that what their customers really want? So what I do is help businesses understand what the problem is, redefine it, and help them look at things more broadly.

Let’s turn to your experience at MIT Sloan. Why did you want to add an MBA to your MS? [13:39]
When I think about my first degree from IIT it was looked at kind of as a business school for designers, who wouldn’t normally know how to present their ideas in a business sense. So I loved that, but as I’ve spent more time in the world of tech I realized I am now immersed in the world of business and wanted to get a wider view, on different industries, on how businesses are looking at problems today, and on leadership. So I came to MIT Sloan Fellows Program specifically to immerse myself in their leadership program. Also MIT because the way they look at technology and how business processes and technology and organizational planning fits in to how we look at business today. I matured into wanting to have a better vocabulary and better way to inquire about some of these broader issues in business.

Why did you choose the full-time, one-year MIT Sloan Fellows option, as opposed to the more common, part-time EMBA program? [15:36]
I am super impressed by the EMBAs because of the ways they can come in bursts on campus and continue doing everything with their jobs. I feel really privileged and supported by my company to immerse myself here. One reason I chose Sloan Fellows was about being in the MIT and Boston ecosystem of innovation. I really wanted to plant myself here. There are a lot of things that happen here that are not on your schedule, and you need to be here and available for all of it. I really wanted the whole experience.

I also don’t know if I’d be able to do a full-time job and this. I didn’t think about it that way. I am also a single mom, and really wanted to do this with my daughter as an adventure. With an EMBA Program I was concerned it would be one more thing taking my time, whereas if we’re here together we’re experiencing it together. There is a huge community with families. Our cohort of 109 has 130 children, with 10 children born since we’ve been here, and that family we’re building together in this unique situation has been a huge part of being here. I thought of this as a full immersive experience, and don’t think I would do it differently.

What did you find most difficult in the MIT Sloan Fellows application process? [17:58]
I can’t recall anything feeling difficult, but if I think about it from an advice perspective, you really need to have a point of view on what you want. It really felt like you needed to say, “I know why I am doing this and know what I am in pursuit of,” so you definitely need to have some direction. That was the compelling part of the application for me. You can’t just fill in the boxes, you need to say why you want this as part of your journey. Knowing how to articulate your own vision can be a challenge, but I don’t remember anything tactically being very difficult.

The year is almost up. Have you gotten what you wanted out of the Sloan Fellows experience? [19:34]
MIT is unique in that we are in the business school, but have amazing exposure to what’s outside of it. There are incredible things going on, in science, engineering, computer science. The exposure has been really amazing and has changed some of my perspective. Coming from the user experience and application side of technology and working at a company out of Silicon Valley, the whole mindset is, “Can you build an app and a company?” Here I am surrounded by people working on really compelling ideas and science. Making a business around an idea is a second thought, and I don’t think I could have gotten that anywhere else. So being exposed to innovation has provided a whole new view. The leadership part has also been really interesting. Obviously I’ve been exposed to entirely new methods and practices and thought leadership, but here you are put in positions to be a leader – teambuilding, challenges you face on projects, and then they bring in amazing people – leaders from organizations to tell you what is difficult about being a leader, and they are not always success stories.

What did you like best about the MIT Sloan Fellows program? [22:38]
There are a million different layers to what I like about being here. We are a very international group from a lot of different industries, so the perspectives in the room are really diverse. With cases in the Global Markets class, there is someone from that geography in the room, or with discussions about a particular industry, there is someone from that industry in the room. There is incredible access to people here, professors and research, as well as adjacent programs. There is a concerted effort to get people in the business school out of the business school, working in other departments as well. There is big amazing stuff going on here, and I am constantly reminded why I am here.

What can be improved? [24:16]
I think there is an element of how prepared one can be. If I could go back in time I would have done work before I got here, immersing myself in things that were new, like math, which I hadn’t prepared for. I kept my head above water, but relearning how to be a student again is nontrivial. While the administration mentioned this, I didn’t hear the call as loudly as I should have.

I think there is just a lot you can do here, and I am pretty sure that there is more I could have done. Perhaps some frameworks on how to approach things would be helpful – “if you are in pursuit of this, here’s a path you can take.” So ways to highlight certain things such that you are not making decisions all along the way, mapping the curriculum a little bit, to cut through how much content there is here. So maybe it is an onboarding problem? I do think they do the best they can, especially with such diversity. I got to do all the things I wanted to do but not in an organized way.

Was it hard to go back to being a full-time student? [27:14]
Studying is challenging – especially just relearning how to study. At work even if you are learning new things you turn them around quickly and are broadcasting back. Here you are really absorbing – you are in a constant state of absorbing, and the pace is really fast, moving quickly from new concept to new concept. Another thing that is esoteric – at work you are moving towards a goal, and you get closure. Here you move on. You don’t get the sense of reward. So many of us have said, “I am used to being really good at stuff,” and you need to open yourself up to not being good at stuff here. It is a funny stretch of your ego. So the pace, the way you focus and feel about what you are doing is very different than work, but it is so much fun and super worthwhile, and a good practice to relearn how to learn. This experience is changing the way I engage when trying to learn something.

What does your daughter think of your going back to school? Do you ever do homework together? [30:05]
I think she is proud of me, which is sweet. With work I would sometimes have homework, but the first few months I was here it was summer and you are really in class all day every day getting through the core, and then with the teamwork, it’s very time-consuming. She was aware I was mentally less present. I think that was interesting for her to watch – how hard I was working, so I think she is proud, and she has really benefited being around a university, and being exposed to people from all over the world. I think it will turn out that she will look back on the experience and remember it fondly.

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Your year at MIT Sloan is almost over. When do you graduate? [31:54]
June 8th. We have four more weeks of class and then a trip to DC, and then graduation. There are three modules throughout the year, one in New York, one in Boston, and one in DC, which involve meetings with leadership in the areas and innovation. These trips are well-curated time away from campus. From Sloan there are also a bunch of treks – China, India, or Israel labs, a Silicon Valley trek, Morocco trek – essentially students organize around an interest and geography and put together a curated trip to investigate. There are tons of opportunities to focus on immersing.

What will you miss the most about MIT Sloan Fellows? [33:49]
The people. We came from everywhere and are here together for just one year. Some of us will be near each other after graduation, but with people coming from all over the world, the temporal part won’t exist after June 8th. There will be a different way to be connected.

What are your plans for the future? How do you intend to use your MBA? [35:18]
I am going back to Salesforce, and the MBA will influence how I work and approach things. There is a lot of work here around operations research, so that translates to more tools for a more qualitative researcher like myself. I have more tools about how businesses make decisions to talk about with my clients. Also, the behaviors and culture it takes to be innovative – that’s another layer of what it means to be innovative and transformative. I hope to weave this learning into the practice I was doing before. It has also made me think more about what my career looks like and what leadership looks like, so I can look ahead at what type of leader and what type of organization I want to be in.

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Related Links:

• Purpose, Possibilities, Passion and Letting Go

• MIT Sloan Fellows Program

MIT Sloan Fellows Essay Tips & Deadlines

• How This Leader Knew MIT’s Sloan Fellows Program Was Right for Her

MBA Admissions Consulting Services

Related Shows:

Meet Dr. Nadia Afridi, Plastic Surgeon, Recent Columbia EMBA, and Mom

Meet Dr. Akshat Kumar, Wharton MBA ‘19

All the Details About the Full-Time MIT Sloan MBA Program

Too Old for an MBA? Check Out 3 Outstanding MBA and EMBA Alternatives

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

The post MIT Sloan Fellow, User Experience Expert, and Busy Mom [Episode 259] appeared first on Accepted Admissions Blog.
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Accepted ~ The Premier Admissions Consultancy
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Must-Know Tips for Getting into B-School with Low Stats  [#permalink]

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New post 17 May 2018, 10:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: Must-Know Tips for Getting into B-School with Low Stats
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If you’re planning to apply to b-school next year and are worried about your GPA, GMAT, or any other potential weak point in your application, we have great news for you: How to Get Accepted to B-School with Low Stats is now live for on-demand viewing!

Choosing the right schools to apply to is so important – if you misjudge based on your profile and get rejected, you risk an expensive and frustrating reapplication process, or not going to business school at all. We understand that applying to b-schools is a stressful process, especially when you’re anxious about any part of your application. That’s why we created How to Get Accepted to B-School with Low Stats. If you missed the live webinar, or if you’d like to see it again for review, you can now watch it anytime.

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Tags: MBA Admissions

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Accepted ~ The Premier Admissions Consultancy
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Co-Author of: MBA Admission for Smarties: The No-Nonsense Guide to Acceptance at Top Business Schools

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What Does Your Work Experience Reveal About You in Your MBA Applicatio  [#permalink]

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New post 18 May 2018, 09:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: What Does Your Work Experience Reveal About You in Your MBA Application
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“What Does Your Work Experience Reveal About You in Your MBA Application” is excerpted from MBA Admission for Smarties: The No-Nonsense Guide to Acceptance at Top Business Schools, by Linda Abraham and Judy Gruen.

Work experience is important because of what it reveals about you in terms of your character, maturity, and abilities. Even if your GPA and GMAT/GRE scores are spectacular, your work experience still needs to impress the admissions readers.

Post-college employment reveals that you have “grown-up” experience in taking direction, meeting deadlines, and working in teams. These are all highly relevant in a program where group projects are the norm. Developing a baseline track record in your field also gives you industry knowledge and the ability to contribute your insights to class discussions. Finally, recruiters prefer MBAs with work experience.

When thinking about your work experience, ask yourself the following questions:

1. How much is enough? Too much?

Most applicants for two-year, full-time MBA programs have from 3-8 years of experience. (If you have been working longer than that, you should probably consider an EMBA or other program geared for the more experienced professional.)

Unless a program actively courts younger applicants, such as Chicago Booth’s Early Career Candidate options or NYU Stern’s Berkley Scholars, two years of work experience is usually the effective minimum you will need to prove that you can contribute to and benefit from the program. Stanford also appears to be more open to younger applicants. Its class profile shows an average of four years of work experience at matriculation, which is somewhat below most other programs that typically are closer to five years of work experience at matriculation.

2. Can you show impact?

It isn’t only the quantity of work experience that is significant – it’s the ability to show how much you have contributed and what impact you have had. If you have the focus, determination, stick-to-it-ness, collegiality, initiative, and maturity that MBA programs prize, chances are you will have found an opportunity to have an impact on the job by applying those skills and traits. And this is true no matter what sort of role you performed, or whether you worked for a large company or fledgling startup.

For example, if you worked for a large company, such as Infosys, Google, Goldman Sachs, or Bloomberg Financial, the adcoms will understand that you were a small fish in a large pond. They will appreciate that you had to work harder to stand out, but they will also look for signs of your talent.

Advancement in large companies is often highly structured, bureaucratic, and possibly slow, with less room to dazzle supervisors with distinctive skills and abilities. The schools are familiar with the typical path, and if your talents were recognized in such a large organization and you were given a project normally given to someone above your pay grade, or if you were fast-tracked for a promotion, this will add stature to your application. Additionally, the fact that a large company with a valued brand name hired you in the first place is another indication that you probably have at least some of what your MBA program is looking for.

On the other hand, if you joined a startup or launched an entrepreneurial venture, you will have the opportunity to show how you survived and perhaps even thrived in those risky, exciting, uncharted waters. In a small company, you would have had more occasions to display your adaptability and versatility. You may also have handled more responsibility with less supervision.

Most applicants who joined startups or launched entrepreneurial ventures have learned invaluable lessons on a faster track than if they had worked in established firms, and wouldn’t trade those experiences for anything, even if their entrepreneurial ventures were short-lived. Not only did they have to toggle among many disparate kinds of tasks, ranging from sales to public relations to product design, but they also learned – sometimes the hard way – fundamental rules of business planning and formation.

If you write about being an entrepreneur, however, you will have to demonstrate that this was not a euphemism for “unemployed.” Your business may or may not have succeeded, but showing how you planned and executed it will speak volumes about you. It will show how you strategized, how you determined the need in the market for your product or service, and the logical sequence you applied in launching and managing your enterprise.

Bottom Line

The kind of work experience you have, as well as your career progression, will help the adcoms get to know you better. Furthermore, even two years of full-time, professional employment can lend credibility and substance to your stated career goals. They will not be based on a youthful, fuzzy, naive dream, but on some real-world business experience that has tested and refined those goals, clarified where you are heading, and how you will get there. Finally, work experience puts you at a competitive advantage to snag the best jobs after earning your MBA.

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:

• Leadership in Admissions, a free guide

• Work Experience in Your MBA Admissions Profile

• What Qualifies as “Good” Work Experience to an MBA Admissions Committee?

Tags: MBA Admissions

The post What Does Your Work Experience Reveal About You in Your MBA Application 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

_________________

Linda Abraham
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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International Students: How to Finance Your U.S. Education  [#permalink]

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New post 22 May 2018, 09:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: International Students: How to Finance Your U.S. Education
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Summary
Brian Hoffman started Nomad Credit to primarily work with international students in helping them find and secure student loans, car loans, health insurance, and more. What many don’t realize is how difficult it is to secure credit in the United States if you don’t already have U.S.-based products, many of which you don’t even have access to until you physically move to the country. Brian’s company provides a matching service based on the unique needs of his customers. For example, if you are in India looking to secure a student loan, Nomad helps you narrow down your options and find the best choice. As his business grows, he looks to expand in other countries, both with schools and lending partners.

Show Notes
How can Nomad Credit help an international student navigate the complex credit system in the United States?
Our guest today is Brian Hoffman, founder and CEO of Nomad Credit. Brian earned his bachelors in finance from Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business in 2012. He began his full-time professional career in trading for about two years and then became an analyst for a company dedicated to helping clients optimize the value of data assets. In late 2015 he founded Nomad Credit, a financial marketplace for those underserved by other marketplaces, specifically non-permanent U.S. residents.

Let’s start with the basics. What is Nomad Credit? What services and/or products does it provide? [2:22]
It’s a platform for international students to help them obtain credit, find insurance products, etc. We don’t provide the loans, but we connect them to partners of ours who do. We also help them with some admissions questions.

How did you come up with the idea behind Nomad? What’s the back story? [3:01]
We wanted to get into traditional student lending like SoFi, but realized we needed to have a competitive advantage or niche to compete, so we decided to transition away from traditional student lending to this niche business. What we realized is that someone coming to the U.S. for the first time needs all the credit products – student loans, credit cards, car loans, insurance, and we decided to go that route.

What’s been your biggest challenge in launching Nomad? [4:30]
There are two. The first is cultural – there are different ways of doing business with lenders in other parts of the world. The second is technology, both for consumers who have never seen an online loan application, and also for lending partners who have never put their loan application online.

What is the biggest or most distinctive benefit of getting a loan through Nomad as opposed to just searching the internet or getting one in their home country? [6:49]
For a long time that’s how students got loans – in their home countries. What people don’t realize is that interest rates are often drastically higher in other parts of the world. In India, for example, student loans are going out at 12-13%, and in the U.S. students can get interest rates in the 4-8% range. Also, if you get a loan in India, it has to be transferred, and there are big FX fees on that, so with a loan from here you don’t have those fees as well, so it tends to be much more cost effective to get the loan here.

What are some of the challenges faced by international students when they try to get student loans? What about those on H-1B visas? [8:23]
Financially it is a very expensive journey. It is very interesting working with people to get loans. Many are looking at getting a $100,000 loan over the course of their education, which in many cases is more than their family has made in the last decade. It is a massive investment. Those on H-1B visas probably have a more difficult time. There are a lot of lenders that focus on international students, so it’s a fairly well-developed market. Visa workers moving here have practically no loan options with no credit and just having gotten their first bank account. We have been talking to the biggest lenders in the U.S. about this – the fact that just because they don’t have any credit doesn’t mean they aren’t worth lending to, so we’re working to solve that issue. Unfortunately the U.S. system works around underwriting, and there are many laws that need to be adhered to. Many countries are drastically more innovative than the U.S. around their loan products because they don’t have the compliance and regulatory environment that we do.

How do applicants go about applying for a student loan at Nomad? [11:24]
We don’t source the applications. Students will come to our site and fill out a one minute loan search – where they are from, what they want to study, where they are going to school – and then we can filter to partners that we have across the world to show some options. From there the actual loan application is very different by geography. In India, for example, it is an actual sheet of paper that you turn in; here you go to a website and get a loan approval in minutes. 95% of our business is with student loans.

Do you ever deal with domestic students? [13:10]
Yes, we’ve had some come to our site by chance, but if we are not marketing/targeting them they won’t show up, but we’d love to have them.

Let’s say I’m a college senior and I’m thinking I want to go for a graduate degree straight from college or a year or two later. What can I do to increase the likelihood of getting a decently priced loan? [13:45]
Study really hard for entrance exams (GRE, GMAT, TOEFL, MCAT, LSAT), and try to get the best score possible. Test scores can influence the ability to get a cheaper loan as well as the rank of school in certain countries.

Not having a balance on your credit card or outstanding fees is also really important. While some people think a credit score is a terrible thing, in this instance when there’s smoke there’s often fire. If you aren’t paying your credit card on time, you probably aren’t going to pay your student loan on time. Those blemishes do matter. The premise is that past behavior predicts future behavior.

Are co-signers required for some of Nomad Credit’s loans? [15:50]
We have a couple of lenders who don’t require a co-signer. Those partners are really interested in where you are going to school and what program you’ll be studying, which is why it’s really important to get into good schools to qualify for the best loan options.

Are there preferred fields of study? For example, is there a preference for STEM fields over liberal arts? [16:29]
I would say generally STEM is really popular especially on the grad side due to the demand. There are also lots of opportunities to work here after graduation in the STEM fields. With Optional Practical Training (OPT), you can stay here as long as three more years with extensions.

What about the other services that Nomad Credit offers, like health insurance, car loans, credit cards, etc? Can you touch on those services? [17:46]
It’s a similar process. We connect students to insurers or credit card providers, and we can do a filter for them. You can’t get a credit card until you move here, but you can get health insurance, so a lot of what we do is advisory. We have so much customer service on a daily basis that it is unbelievable. A lot of it is helping folks through the process – never having seen an online loan application, explaining that no one will steal your info, you will get your money, etc.

What do you see going forward for Nomad Credit? [19:34]
We talk with lots of customers in other countries like Canada, Australia, New Zealand, etc., so we’re working on relationships in those countries, looking at schools or partners. India will also be a bigger market for us in the future, too, and we’d also like to partner with lenders in the Middle East

How did you get from your background to a financial marketplace? [20:24]
I tried to be the lender myself, and I realized that as an options trader you are pretty risk-seeking. You can get one trade right and the other 99 wrong and if it’s big enough, it is still reason to celebrate. In lending if you get more than a few out of a hundred wrong, you’re in trouble, so there is huge liability risk you engage in as a lender – it’s like, “let’s roll the dice.” So I decided to take my knowledge and work with lenders who were better off making credit decisions than I was.

I’d like to ask a question about your path. My guess is that you are in your late twenties, a time when many are contemplating an MBA. You have a Bachelors in Business from Indiana, experience in trading and as an analyst. Did you ever consider going for a graduate degree, including an MBA, and why did you decide to start Nomad instead? [23:45]
I fondly remember my college days and would love to do that again. I have contemplated it, but I will say that running a company is a daily learning experience. I would like to get an MBA in the future, though.

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Related Links:

Nomad Credit

Grad School Admissions Consulting Services

Related Shows:

Sallie Mae: Student Loans with Options and Flexibility

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 Loan Debt: The CommonBond Story

Making International Student Loans a Prime Investment

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

The post International Students: How to Finance Your U.S. Education [Episode 260] 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 Eliminates Third Application Round  [#permalink]

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New post 23 May 2018, 09:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: Harvard Business School Eliminates Third Application Round
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In keeping with the trend of more and more MBA candidates submitting their applications in the first and second rounds (September and January), Harvard Business School (HBS) recently announced that it will be eliminating its third and final application round. However, the third round will remain in place for its 2+2 program for college seniors seeking deferred admission.

Estimates are that less than 5% of Harvard’s incoming MBA classes apply in R3. Students who are rejected by HBS usually accept offers from other top MBA programs.

Harvard’s decision will definitely have an impact on other programs that leave spots open for those students not accepted to Harvard during R1 and R2. Additionally, candidates will not have to wait until the spring to be notified of their waitlist status. This will allow applicants to give earlier notice to these other programs.

HBS Admissions Director Views Change as Positive for Incoming Students
Chad Losee, HBS’s managing director of MBA admissions and financial aid, sees this decision as a positive one for incoming students. “Getting a decision earlier will give admitted students better access to on-campus housing, more cohort options for HBX CORe, and more time for visa processing,” he says. He also states that the decision was made to give the Class of 2021 a head start on the R1 and R2 deadlines, announcing that these deadlines will be September 5, 2018 and January 4, 2019. The application for R1 will open in early June 2018. Harvard is striving to make the admissions process as smooth as they can for incoming students.

According to Losee, when students interview on campus, a whole day of events is planned with students and faculty to give candidates a real feeling of attending HBS. But when applicants would come for R3 interviews, they wouldn’t get a complete picture of HBS since students and faculty were already well into the swing of final exams.

HBS acknowledges that timing has traditionally been a problem for students admitted in Round 3. They recognize that is takes a lot of time to finish up a job and move to a new city and feel that the extra time will be helpful in these and other areas.

MBA Admissions Consultants Share Their Perspective
Accepted’s MBA admissions consultants see the Harvard Business School application deadline change as a positive one, given the few non-2+2 students who were actually accepted during the third round. Accepted Senior Consultant Jennifer Bloom notes “Frankly, I appreciate the honesty. It’s nasty to make people think they have a real chance when there are so few (or no) spots left.”

Accepted consultant Karin Ash adds, “It also once again reveals how the elite schools are spoiled with an abundance of over-the-top applications.”

Linda Abraham, Accepted founder and CEO, believes “This change may actually slightly increase applications round 3 for other schools. “People rejected to HBS (and elsewhere) will apply to other programs round 3.”

Need help creating a strong, competitive application for Harvard Business School? Check out our MBA Admissions Consulting Services for more information on how we can help you get ACCEPTED.

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Related Resources:

Best MBA Programs: A Guide to Selecting the Right One, a free guide

• What’s The Rush? Round 1 vs. Round 2 For MBA Applicants

Harvard Business School MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines

Tags: MBA Admissions

The post Harvard Business School Eliminates Third Application Round 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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Tips for Your Stanford Knight-Hennessy Scholars Program Application  [#permalink]

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New post 24 May 2018, 09:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: Tips for Your Stanford Knight-Hennessy Scholars Program Application
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Do you aim to improve the world? Would you like to earn your graduate degree at Stanford tuition-free? Then you will be happy to hear about the new 2018-19 Knight-Hennessy Scholars program at Stanford, a program that will cover 100 Stanford graduate students’ tuition for up to three years, plus provide a stipend for room and board, travel, and personal expenses, while offering complementary opportunities to develop as a change leader. The inaugural class of 49 Knight-Hennessy Scholars – selected from 3,601 applicants – will enroll in the fall of 2018, and the application for the second set of Knight-Hennessy Scholars is now open.

Applicants apply to their Stanford graduate program and the Knight-Hennessy Scholarship separately; admission to one does not guarantee the other.

What kind of candidate is this exciting program seeking?
Stanford is seeking graduate students who will attend Stanford in the fall of 2019 and who completed their undergraduate degrees in the past five years (that is the class of 2014 or later). If you graduated in 2013 or earlier, you are no longer eligible for this program unless you are a US military veteran.

In addition to being recent graduates, applicants must demonstrate a pattern of independent thought and dissent, ambitious and tenacious leadership with purpose, and civic action and kindness.

That’s a lot to demonstrate! The good news is that Stanford does offer several application components to do so. Below are the prompts for that material and my suggestions in blue.

Stanford Knight-Hennessy Scholars Program Essay Questions
Essay 1: Connect the dots. How have the influences in your life shaped you?

You may find it helpful to review the 2005 Stanford Commencement address delivered by Steve Jobs.

This essay is the ideal space to share how you became an independent thinker, courageous dissenter, ambitious and tenacious leader, and kind civic activist. Do not describe your actions alone: go in depth about your fears, your frustrations, your doubts, and the voice that ran in your head to guide those actions. These are the keys to revealing how you have been shaped and making a deep impression on the admission committee.

Essay 2: How will you pursue your life’s calling? How will your Stanford education and your Knight-Hennessy Scholars experience support this?

Last year’s application phrased the question differently but pointed applicants to the Designing Your Life work of Stanford Professors Bill Burnett and Dave Evans. I still think that suggestion is relevant since Burnett and Evans’ work guides people through the process of thinking about and pursuing their callings to achieve fulfilled lives.

This essay can reveal much more than pipe dreams for the future if you share the ways in which you have already made inroads in some of your fields of interest and the passion that drove you in each. What risks did you take? What preconceived notions did you have to throw out so that you could pursue these passions? What failures pointed you in better directions? What creative solutions have you devised that effected lasting change? How will Stanford and the Knight-Hennessy Scholarship help you build on these experiences to even larger impacts?

Note that the combined word limit for Essays 1 and 2 is 1,750 words.

Stanford Knight-Hennessy Scholars Program Short Answer Questions
Short Answer 1: Please tell us eight improbable facts (things that are unlikely but true) about you.

For your eight improbable facts, you may write a total of 150 words (an average of around 18 words each). Since the application form offers you space to discuss your three most meaningful activities and three most significant awards (see the next question), this space is best dedicated to more unique aspects of your background. If you’re having trouble with this one, you may find it helpful to kickstart your brainstorming process by talking to your friends and family about things they find unusual about you.

Short Answer 2: Please list three goals/objectives that you are working toward right now. (No, being admitted to Stanford and/or being selected as a Knight-Hennessy Scholar can’t count as one of those goals.)

All three current goals/objectives can only total 75 words, so you’ll need to be brief in your descriptions. Ideally, you will be able to illustrate your ambition, tenacity, purposeful leadership, civic action or kindness with each of these. If you’ve been perfecting your Cruyff Turn in soccer, building your fluency in Mandarin, or driving civic engagement among a disaffected community, then you have great material for this short answer question.

Stanford Knight-Hennessy Scholars Program Video Submission
Teach something to your cohort or fellow Knight-Hennessy Scholars.

You can certainly write a script for this video in advance of recording; however, you must record it live within the online application. Don’t worry, you can re-record your video up to nine times if you stutter or lose your place. Your video may last up to two minutes, but you can press Stop Recording earlier if your script does not fill the entire allotted time. Your topic can be anything, but the best lessons will share something you know well and are passionate about: anything from guitar or Tai Chi to the engineering of bridges. The point is to give the admissions committee a sense of your voice, your verbal communication, and, if possible, your personality.

Stanford Knight-Hennessy Scholars Program Additional Information Section
You may feel free to use the space below to share essential information not conveyed elsewhere in your application (e.g., a factor affecting your academic performance).

If there is something important that just didn’t fit anywhere else, you have 750 characters to share it here. That’s approximately six sentences.

Stanford Knight-Hennessy Scholars Program Deadline
September 12, 2018: You need to submit the Knight-Hennessy Scholars application by 1:00pm Pacific Time on September 12, 2018.

Autumn 2018: You must submit your Stanford graduate application during Fall 2018. However, different Stanford graduate programs have different application deadlines. Check with the individual graduate program for details and your program’s due date.

Stanford Knight-Hennessy Scholars Program Notification Dates
January 16, 2019: On this date applicants will be notified if NOT chosen as a Knight Hennessy Scholar. If applicants are among the 150 fortunate finalists invited to attend the Immersion Weekend they will also hear the good news on this date.

February 9-11, 2019: The Immersion Weekend for those lucky 150 finalists. Stanford brings them to the Stanford campus at Stanford’s expense for the weekend. The Immersion weekend gives attendees a glimpse into life at Stanford and gives Stanford a chance to become more acquainted with the applicants.

Mid-February 2019: Stanford informs the Immersion Weekend participants if they are selected (or not) as one of up to 75 Knight-Hennessy Scholars in the 2019 cohort.

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

Do you want professional guidance with your Knight-Hennessy application? Check out Accepted’s Admissions Consulting which can be used for strategic guidance, essay and resume editing, and interview coaching for the Knight-Hennessy application.

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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 are looking for an admissions consultant that understands what Stanford and the Knight-Hennessy Scholarship are seeking and will guide you with a combination of great personal attention and insight, then you will be happy working with Jennifer. Want Jennifer to help you get accepted? Click here!

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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:

Stanford GSB MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines

Understanding Stanford GSB’s Core Value of Intellectual Vitality

Stanford Takes Top Spot in 2018 Financial Times MBA Rankings

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

The post Tips for Your Stanford Knight-Hennessy Scholars Program Application 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

_________________

Linda Abraham
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

Follow Accepted on Twitter
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Why Extracurricular Activities Make a Difference in Your MBA Applicati  [#permalink]

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New post 27 May 2018, 09:00
FROM Accepted.com Blog: Why Extracurricular Activities Make a Difference in Your MBA Application
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Don’t underestimate the value of extracurricular activities in your b-school application! Use the following Q&A to help you prioritize and then write about your extracurricular activities.

What are extracurricular activities?
An extracurricular activity is a non-academic, non-professional activity that you participate in. These activities include hobbies, sports, the arts, and volunteering or community service.

Why are extracurriculars important?
Extracurricular activities play a critical role in your MBA application. Here are five reasons why:

1. Extracurricular activities add color and texture to an otherwise one-dimensional application.

They help the adcom get to know YOU – not just the you that works nine to five (or six to ten) crunching numbers at the desk, but the YOU that also has ten state-wide blue ribbons in figure skating or that has quilted the largest quilt east of the Mississippi with the help of your town’s local special ed school.

2. Extracurricular activities prove your commitment.

You’ve taught piano (pro bono) to the same kid for eight years straight? You must be a committed, reliable, and dependable person. Admissions committees like that.

3. Extracurriculars demonstrate creativity and passion.

Extracurricular or volunteer commitments don’t need to be typical soup kitchen or Big Brother/Big Sister experiences, although those are valuable too. Think beyond run-of-the-mill examples to other things you’ve done – like all those winter breaks you spent running a camp for your autistic little brother and two other kids from the neighborhood, or that summer you traveled to India to help run a vaccination clinic. These examples don’t specifically relate to business, but creativity and passion can easily be seen in each experience. If you share your passions, you’ll inspire your readers!

4. Extracurricular activities allow you to demonstrate initiative, as well as leadership and organizational skills.

Let’s look back at our examples from above and ask a few questions: What steps did you take to set up your backyard camp? Whose idea was it? What sorts of activities did you plan and execute with the kids? And about the clinic in India: What role did you play in running the vaccination clinic? Did you just sit around and do what you were told to do? Or did you take initiative to present your own organizational ideas? Did you fundraise? Get others to commit too? In both of these cases, it shouldn’t be hard to demonstrate that you are the type of thoughtful, inspirational leader who transforms an idea into reality.

5. Extracurricular activities can tip the scale in your favor when you’re up against an otherwise equally competitive candidate.

Extracurricular activities and community service can make the difference between acceptance and rejection when adcoms are sizing up two applicants with similar competitiveness. A fundamental assumption of admission is that past behavior predicts future behavior. Admissions committees are proud of their schools and know that to thrive, these communities constantly need new, active, involved members. Furthermore, they want people who will also be involved as alumni and community leaders after business school. If two applicants have the same scores, equally persuasive essays, impressive letters of rec, and similar professional experience, AND if there’s only one more seat to be filled, then the adcom members will choose the applicant who has served her community or shown commitment, leadership, and all those other good things we’ve discussed above, through an extracurricular activity, over the guy who’s focused only on furthering his career.

What should you do if you don’t have long-term extracurricular or volunteer commitments?
This is a common question I’m asked, and a good one. If you don’t have much (or any) extracurriculars to write about, then is it better to start an activity, pick up a new hobby, or resume participation in a past activity or hobby just before applying to b-school so that you have something to write? Will the adcom view this as a shallow or phony move? Is it better to not mention any extracurriculars and hope that the adcoms just don’t notice, rather than highlight the fact that you have just a few, or none at all, worth mentioning?

My answer: You should start now! Here are four reasons why:

1. A little volunteering or a new extracurricular activity is better than no volunteering/extracurriculars at all.

The impact you can make in even a short period of time can be great. Involvement in an extracurricular activity or in community service can dramatically affect you as a person, and therefore can significantly affect your MBA candidacy as well.

2. A little commitment is better than no commitment at all.

Obviously a commitment that’s lasted only a couple of months will not be as effective as one that’s lasted years, but it’s still better than no commitment at all. Think of it this way: If you don’t show that you’ve been committed to a non-academic, non-professional activity, then the adcom may think that you’re incapable of doing so.

3. Even a little extracurricular activity will liven up a flat application.

See #1 in the first list. You don’t want to come off as a workaholic who has no time or interest in anything non-work related. Demonstrate your humanity and liven up your application – a little could go a long way.

4. What if you’re waitlisted or you need to reapply?

Obviously we hope for the best, but it doesn’t hurt to think ahead and make room for Plan B, which is: You may be waitlisted or you may be rejected and need to reapply. If either of those are the case, then won’t you be glad that you started your extracurricular/volunteer experience as early as you did? What looked like a brief volunteer encounter during your first application effort now looks like an impressive long-term experience. By now your endeavor is more impressive and has had a greater impact – on you and on others. The same goes for people who plan on applying this year, start volunteering, and then change their minds to apply next year.

To sum up: If you’re not already involved in an extracurricular activity, take the time NOW to find an activity that you feel passionate about. Then, follow your passions and DO something.

What else can you do to boost your competitiveness and submit an application that will get you accepted? Work one-on-one with an expert advisor who will help you discover your competitive advantage and use it to create a successful, admit-worthy application. Explore our MBA Admissions Services here.

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Related Resources:

9 Secrets to Standing Out in Your MBA Application, a free guide

• 4 Tips for Writing About Last Minute Extracurricular Activities

MBA Admissions: Does Extracurricular Equal Extra Credit?

Tags: MBA Admissions

The post Why Extracurricular Activities Make a Difference in Your MBA Application appeared first on Accepted Admissions Blog.
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A Second Chance for GMAT Success?  [#permalink]

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New post 29 May 2018, 09:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: A Second Chance for GMAT Success?
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Our recent webinar, The GMAT: Low Scores, Retaking & Strategies for Success, was a huge success – Linda Abraham demystified the GMAT and provided loads of helpful advice.

Missed it live? No worries – the recording is available now!

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Tags: MBA Admissions

The post A Second Chance for GMAT Success? appeared first on Accepted Admissions Blog.
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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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5 Elements to Telling an Attention-Grabbing Story  [#permalink]

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New post 30 May 2018, 09:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: 5 Elements to Telling an Attention-Grabbing Story
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Ready to write your personal statement? Then it’s time to conjure your inner storyteller. The best way to distinguish yourself from other applicants is to tell the admissions board a good story, a tale of your greatest achievements, dreams, and challenges.

How do you tell a good story?

It’s not about lifting plots from Harry Potter or hoping you suddenly gain magic storytelling powers. It’s about tying together the following five key elements:

Storytelling element #1: Creating a killer opening

To get the admissions reader to keep reading – and even better, to keep reading enthusiastically – start with something attention-grabbing. Usually that something is a scene or a moment in the middle of the action. If you started an essay with “One day I decided to watch TV,” then your readers probably wouldn’t really care what happened next. It may be that you were watching TV when you found a worrisome lump, but your bored readers likely won’t get to that point because of the snooze-inducing opener. On the other hand, an opening like “The moment I found the lump, I suspected my life was about to change – in a big way” will do a much better job of drawing in your readers.

Storytelling element #2: Setting context

It was mid-May 2011. I was a busy consultant in McKinsey’s Chicago office, the proud father of a boy about to turn one, and a generally happy guy in his mid-20s.

This part immediately places the killer opening in context. Context (person, place, time) is important because readers want to understand the story’s circumstances; it helps them relate to the story, even if they’ve never been in that situation.

Storytelling element #3: Introducing the stakes

The above line also shows the reader what’s at stake. Stakes further help the reader relate to a story – if there’s little for the main character to lose, then the reader won’t care much about what happens next. Luke Skywalker had to destroy the Death Star to prevent Darth Vader from taking over the universe, which would have meant a lot of suffering for everyone. If Dorothy couldn’t navigate Oz’s Yellow Brick Road past the Wicked Witch, she never would have gotten back home to Kansas. If you had never figured out the source of the lump and treated it (if needed), then you wouldn’t have been able to continue your life as a busy consultant, proud father, and generally happy guy. You don’t need gargantuan stakes for people to relate to your story; but effective stakes are something most of us would fight for, like health, a job, our community’s welfare, and the like.

Storytelling element #4 and #5: Outlining the obstacles AND Demonstrating strength of character

It was tempting to wish the lump would just go away, and for a few days that was my strategy. I didn’t even tell my wife. But soon I recognized that knowledge is power, and made an appointment with my doctor. Within a week I had a diagnosis: cancer.

This keeps the reader interested because it brings in two new elements: an obstacle (cancer) and character (your personality traits).

By this point in the story, your readers will know that you are the main character – you’re the consultant, father, etc. But the text above shows your reader what kind of character you are: one who is human (tempted to wish something bad away) but also one who takes action in adverse circumstances (going to the doctor).

Character isn’t only about positive traits though. Many essay questions ask you to discuss a time you failed or made a mistake. For those, you need to highlight negative traits upfront (e.g., Luke Skywalker’s lack of faith in himself and the Force), but in the context of how you gained insights and ultimately more positive attributes from dealing with their consequences.

Do you need help writing your attention-grabbing story? Check out our 1-on-1 Admissions Services for more information on how we can help you use story elements to write effective essays.

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Related Resources:

5 Fatal Flaws to Avoid in Your Grad School Statement of Purpose, a free guide

4 More Elements to Telling an Attention-Grabbing Story

What 3 Essential Ingredients Must You Include in Your Statement of Purpose?

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

The post 5 Elements to Telling an Attention-Grabbing Story 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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5 Factors to Consider When Assessing Your MBA Profile  [#permalink]

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New post 31 May 2018, 09:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: 5 Factors to Consider When Assessing Your MBA Profile
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An MBA application is like a mosaic. Each element contributes to create a full picture of who you are. Some pieces will be brighter or more colorful than others. For those less sparkly components (like your weaknesses), you can either polish them to hide their dullness and to highlight the brilliance that surrounds them, or you can reevaluate your school choices and apply to programs where you’ll be more competitive.

Here are five factors to look at when assessing your profile – examining and weighing your strengths and weaknesses so you can narrow down your list and apply to the best schools for you.

1. GMAT/GPA

If your score is more than 30 points below the average listed at your target school, then you can either adjust your list of target schools and aim for MBA programs that have lower GMAT averages, or you can keep your list and retake the GMAT.

That being said, it’s only one factor in your application. If you scored low on the GMAT, you may be an outlier in another area, which could mitigate your score.

Your undergraduate GPA is another factor the adcom considers. Those with a 3.6 and above are generally fine at top schools. If you had a wobbly semester or two, use the optional essay to provide context and discuss what you’ve done to address those weak areas. Perhaps you retook a few classes, or later enrolled in a continuing ed course to brush up your skill set.

2. Work experience

Top business schools are generally looking for folks with between 3-7 years of work experience.

Certain professions are highly represented. For example, at Harvard, the top professions pre-MBA are consulting, financial services, VC/PE, and “high tech/communications.” At Wharton, it’s consulting and military/government/non-profit. At Stanford it’s consulting, VC/PE, and military/government/non-profit.

If you’re not a consultant, in finance, or a government wonk – that doesn’t mean you’re not competitive! MBA programs are also looking for diversity to bring differing viewpoints to class discussions. What you need to communicate is how your achievements are extraordinary and how your background will add to the school’s diversity.

That’s what will make you stand out.

3. International considerations

International applicants need to show work experience + international exposure. Or work experience + extraordinary accomplishments. (For that matter, non-international applicants would also do well to show their international exposure!)

Take a look at the profiles of students who head up international clubs at top US and UK b-schools. More likely than not they have one or two of the following boxes checked.

• They have significant international experience working outside of their home country, often with a multinational company or recognized global organization.

• They’ve done something truly extraordinary in the context of their profession.

If you have never traveled or worked outside your home country, then your accomplishments should stand out anywhere around the globe. And not just with high test scores, but by introducing significant innovation at work, developing a skill, creating a business, or founding a socially-oriented activity that’s unique and interesting.

Are you networking for international assignments at work? If not, start doing so now. Would you consider what you’ve done, extraordinary? If not, stop dreaming and start doing it now.

4. Goals

Your goals need to make sense based on your past experience. They should draw a clear connection from your past to your future.

Thinking about switching careers? That’s fine – just show the admissions committee that you’ve already gained some exposure to the industry, and why your past experience will be an asset as you move forward.

Bear in mind that the adcom will likely assess your employability. Will your background plus an MBA make sense to recruiters? Are you an international student? You may have a harder time getting hired by a firm outside of countries where you are already permitted to work. It’s best to show in your application that you’re flexible – you’re willing to return to your home country, get some more experience, then branch out based on your own networking.

5. Fit and familiarity

Have you taken a summer session course on campus? Are you an alum of the undergraduate program? Have you worked in the city where the school is located? If so, then you can then make a better case for being familiar with a program’s curriculum and community.

Your post-MBA plans also play a role when assessing “fit”. Do you have experience in a school’s specialization? Do you have family in the area, or previous business connections that would lead you to happily settle in the school’s locale after graduation? Are you a big city kind of person, or do you enjoy the strong connections forged in smaller communities?

Be HONEST with yourself. If a school ticks your boxes on paper but you can’t get a feel for how it would be to study there, then you should definitely plan a campus visit if you can afford it. Rankings and name recognition are a place to start, but ultimately, an MBA is a HUGE investment. Don’t make it the worst two-year vacation you went into debt for and will spend a lifetime paying back. Make it a transformative experience. Find an environment where you will thrive.

Do you need help assessing your profile and determining which b-schools are best for you? We can help. Explore our MBA Admissions Consulting Services and work one-on-one with an expert advisor who will help you get accepted.

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Michelle Stockman is a professional journalist, former Columbia Business School admissions insider, and experienced MBA admissions consultant. Want Michelle to help you get accepted? Click here to get in touch!
 

Related Resources:

7 Steps to MBA Acceptance, a free webinar

Are You a Good Fit for Your Target MBA Programs?

Are You Targeting the Right MBA Program for You?

Tags: MBA Admissions

The post 5 Factors to Consider When Assessing Your MBA Profile 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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How Your Top Choice MBA Program Ranks in Accepted’s Selectivity Index  [#permalink]

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New post 01 Jun 2018, 09:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: How Your Top Choice MBA Program Ranks in Accepted’s Selectivity Index
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This year’s Selectivity IndexImage
is here!

Two years ago, Accepted developed the MBA Selectivity Index to help you apply realistically and effectively to business school. The index takes the most recent U.S. News rankings data and reflects the schools’ average GPA, test scores, and acceptance rates so that you can assess the relative difficulty of acceptance. You can also order the schools by average test score, GPA, or acceptance rate.

We chose to focus on these key metrics not because they are solely determinative (because they are not), but because they do illustrate how difficult it is to gain acceptance to a school. These particular metrics also suggest which schools may be focusing on a certain aspect of an applicant’s profile and which may not.

Average GMAT and GPA for Top MBA Programs
Here are some stats we found when analyzing the U.S. News data this year:

Stanford GSB is #1 on the Selectivity Index again (and also 4th again on the U.S. News rankings), with the highest average GMAT score (737), highest average GPA (3.74), and lowest acceptance rate (5.7%) of all schools on the list.

Harvard is #2 on the Index (ranked #1 in the U.S. News rankings), with negligibly lower GMAT scores and GPA, but with a significantly higher acceptance rate at 9.9%.

Across the top 10 schools in the Index, the average GMAT score is 721, GPA is 3.60, and acceptance rate is 14.8%.

Exactly 20 schools had average GMAT scores 700 or above, compared to 16 schools last year.

23 schools had average GPAs of 3.5 or higher this year, compared to 28 last year.

Why did we develop the Selectivity Index? Because we noticed that our clients tended to:

Apply exclusively to schools where they were not competitive.

They were basing this decision on the stats and available information (which was inadequate – the Selectivity Index just wasn’t there yet).

Focus on the one metric where they were either very strong or very weak.

Focusing on the one number that either makes you feel great or makes you feel terrible means that you fail to choose schools realistically, and consequently “invest” poorly in your overall application effort.

Ignore weaknesses.

This generally results in a failure to address or mitigate the weaknesses. If you’re going to ignore them, you’re not going to fix them!

At Accepted, we don’t routinely discourage our clients from pursuing their dream schools – all you have to lose is the time spent putting together the application and the fee to submit, and at the end of the day you never know what might capture the attention of an admissions committee. That said, it makes sense for you to realistically assess your competitiveness at your target schools by comparing your test scores and grades as well as the non-quantitative factors in your profile to the known stats and stated criteria of the schools you want to attend.

How to Use the Information in the Selectivity Index
You can’t apply to b-school in a bubble. You must evaluate your qualifications in parallel to the average stats for your target schools. Here’s what we recommend you do:

Apply to a few dream schools, but mostly to programs where you are competitive.

Assess your weaknesses and strengths in the context of your overall application so that you neither obsess over a weakness nor fail to provide positive reasons for acceptance.

Work to mitigate weaknesses before and during the actual application process while highlighting strengths and creating a strong case for acceptance beyond the stats in your application.

A few of you may be thinking:

“I know my chances aren’t great at my target schools. But I’m working and making good money. It doesn’t pay for me to apply to any but the most prestigious schools.”

There are some applicants in this situation, but very few. If you’re one of them, you are applying rationally. If you aren’t one of them and you could achieve your goals at programs where you are competitive, then chances are you are relying too heavily on reputation over fit.

Weaknesses in the MBA Selectivity Index
While we feel this is a useful tool for anyone considering business school when it comes to just stats, there are some things missing.

1. The Selectivity Index doesn’t reflect non-quantitative information, which does play a significant role in the holistic admissions process, and can allow those with non-quantitative strengths to get in despite lower-than-average stats.

2. It doesn’t reflect the schools’ desire for diversity in their classes and community. Depending on your demographic profile, you may have a lower or higher bar to hit to be considered competitive for admission.

3. It doesn’t reflect the importance of showing fit with an individual school’s strengths, mission, and values. It is up to you to do the appropriate research, including (if possible) visits to the school, attendance at admissions events, and/or connecting with current students or alumni. At the end of the day, the results of that research are much more important in helping you determine where to apply than stats could ever be.

4. It does not measure or reflect ROI, educational quality, or career opportunity, which are all things you should factor into your decision-making process.

Finally, while the Selectivity Index does reveal the relative level of competition at different programs, it doesn’t excuse you from making sure that the schools where you are competitive will also help you achieve your goals. It does you no good to get into a program that won’t help you go down your chosen path and realize your dreams.

Get an Admissions Consultant’s Help with Your MBA Application
Looking for an additional way to improve your odds? Work with an Accepted admissions consultant to be sure that you are getting the best advice possible to position yourself well at your schools of choice. Don’t find yourself disappointed at the end of the admissions cycle – work with Accepted, sharpen your competitive edge…and get accepted!

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Jen Weld worked as an admissions consultant and Former Asst. Dir. of Admissions at Cornell’s EMBA program (4 years) prior to joining Accepted. She has an additional 10 years of experience in higher ed and corporate marketing. Want Jen to help you get Accepted? Click here to get in touch!
 

Related Resources:

Best MBA Programs: A Guide to Selecting the Right One, a free guide

Are You a Good Fit for Your Target MBA Programs?

Are You Targeting the Right MBA Program for You?

Tags: MBA Admissions

The post How Your Top Choice MBA Program Ranks in Accepted’s Selectivity Index 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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Stand Out or Fit In? 4 Application Strategies to Help You Do Both  [#permalink]

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New post 03 Jun 2018, 09:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: Stand Out or Fit In? 4 Application Strategies to Help You Do Both
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It can be confusing: Half of the advice you read urges you to stand out in your application, while the other half advises you to explain how you’ll fit in. So which is it? Should you stand out or fit in?

The answer, unsurprisingly, is BOTH. You need to show your distinction and demonstrate fit simultaneously.

Here are some tips to help you juggle the stand out/fit in dichotomy:

1) Highlight unique interests, hobbies, or activities.
You can safely assume that there will be other applicants in your professional/social/economic/geographic group. Whether you’re an IT major applying to b-school or an English major applying to law school or a Prep student applying to an Ivy League college…you’re probably (okay, definitely) not alone. In these cases you’re going to need to highlight your individuality. You’ll need to prove to the adcom that while your profile lands you smack in the middle of their “Typical” file, you’re actually an incredibly distinct and unique person. For example, you play the harp professionally. You started your own moving company when you were 19 years old. You won the regional juggling competition six years in a row. Now you’ve got their attention.

2) Connect your “stand out” factor to your goals to create a coherent overall message.
Distinguishing your personality through your unique interests is one way to stand out, but it’s not the only way, or even the most effective way. You should also distinguish yourself by expressing your unique goals. Maybe most psych majors who apply to med school go into psychiatry. Your motivation for becoming a doctor, however, wasn’t the psychology courses you took in college, but your summer job in an orthopedist surgeon’s office. You want to combine your passion in psychology with your interest in the human skeleton to become a geriatric orthopedist. Congratulations – you’re no longer the typical psych-major-turned-med-student!

3) Demonstrate fit for balance.
For those who fit snugly into an overrepresented profile group, demonstrating fit should be a piece of cake – after all, so many of you are attracted to Top School X probably because it’s the best school for people like you to pursue their goals. Conversely, those who have no trouble distinguishing themselves (like, say, a coffee farmer), may need to tug at their creative strings to make the “fit factor” happen. How do you convince the adcoms that you’re a good fit for their program? By explaining the ways in which you and the program are MFEO – how the program will help you achieve your goals and how you, in turn, will contribute to the class and to the school’s overall goals and missions.

4) Envision a mosaic.
A good way to both demonstrate fit and distinguish yourself is to think of a mosaic. Each tile is distinct – with its own shape and color combination – yet when pieced together with the other tiles, becomes part of a large, beautiful, cohesive picture. You want the adcom readers to think that they’ve stumbled upon the missing tile in the mosaic that will become the next Top B-School, College, Law School, Med School, or Grad School Class: YOU. You in all your differentiating glory and unifying power. You who both stands out and fits in perfectly.

Do you need help demonstrating how you’ll both fit in and stand out in your application? We can help! Work one-on-one with an admissions consultant to create a stand-out app that shows just how perfectly you’ll fit in. Learn more here.

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Related Resources:

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

• Stand Out! A Critical Goal for Your Application, a podcast episode

Focus on Fit, a podcast episode

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

The post Stand Out or Fit In? 4 Application Strategies to Help You Do Both 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

_________________

Linda Abraham
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 MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines  [#permalink]

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New post 04 Jun 2018, 09:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: Harvard Business School MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines
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The big news about the upcoming 2018-19 application cycle at Harvard Business School is that it is dropping its third round for all MBA applicants except 2+2 applicants.

This past MBA application cycle all 2+2 applicants were reviewed after the Round 3 deadline but non-2+2 MBA applicants could also apply. For this upcoming cycle the last deadline will be the exclusive 2+2 deadline, unless Harvard changes something. In 2018, that deadline occurred on April 2.

Ironically, MIT Sloan, Harvard’s neighbor in Cambridge, only added a third round a couple of years ago. Until then MIT had only two rounds.

Harvard Business School, ranked #1 by US News, is, according to Accepted’s B-School Selectivity Index, the second hardest MBA program to get into, following Stanford GSB. That status reflects HBS’ second lowest acceptance rate (11%), the third highest average GMAT for accepted students (729),  and second highest GPA for accepted students (3.67). However, that second-place status is misleading. The Harvard brand is matched perhaps only by Stanford, and the second-place standing is probably accounted for by class size more than anything else. Harvard’s class is more than double Stanford’s, and Harvard simply accepts more people so its acceptance rate is higher  (Data is from the US News 2019 Rankings for the class that entered in 2017).

On to the Harvard MBA application and essay question itself:  HBS clearly likes the responses it has received to the last two years’ excellent essay question because this year’s question is identical. Indeed there is little change in HBS’ application this year, period. The essay is again required, and there is NO word limit.

The round 1 and round 2 deadlines are only slightly different from last year. The Round 1 deadline is Sept. 5, 2018, one day earlier than last year.

Harvard Business School Application Tips
There is one question for the Class of 2021:

As we review your application, what more would you like us to know as we consider your candidacy for the Harvard Business School MBA program?

There is no word limit for this question. We think you know what guidance we’re going to give here. Don’t overthink, overcraft and overwrite. Just answer the question in clear language that those of us who don’t know your world can understand.

Before you begin to write I have two suggestions for you:

1. Review Harvard’s criteria for admission.

2. Watch the embedded video on the case method at HBS.

[youtube2]p>

For expert guidance on your Harvard Business School application, check out Accepted’s MBA Application Packages, which include advising, editing, interview coaching, and a resume edit for the HBS application. We’ve helped hundreds of applicants get accepted to the Harvard MBA program and look forward to helping you too!

Harvard Business School 2018-19 Application Deadlines:https://blog.accepted.com/resources/mba-admissions/mba-essay-tip-posts/

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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 and co-author of the definitive book on MBA admissions, MBA Admission for Smarties: The No-Nonsense Guide to Acceptance at Top Business SchoolsWhat Is Harvard Business School Looking For?

• HBX CORe: Teaching the Language of Business, a podcast

Harvard Business School Eliminates Third Application Round

Tags: MBA Admissions

The post Harvard Business School MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines appeared first on Accepted Admissions Blog.
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_________________

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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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Society of Women Engineers: The Community for Women in Engineering  [#permalink]

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New post 05 Jun 2018, 10:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: Society of Women Engineers: The Community for Women in Engineering
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Summary
The Society of Women Engineers (SWE) is 40,000+ members strong worldwide, and provides a sense of community to women who may feel isolated in their engineering studies or career due to a lack of gender diversity. Karen Horting is the Executive Director & CEO of the organization, and shares a lot of great information on the engineering field, the services provided by SWE, and how members and affiliated employers can benefit from being a part of the organization.

How the Society of Women Engineers is Empowering Women
I’m so pleased to have on the show Karen Horting, Executive Director & CEO of the Society of Women Engineers. Karen worked in marketing after earning her bachelors in biology at Northern Illinois University, and she earned her MBA from the Johns Hopkins’ Carey Business School in 2000. She served as Marketing Director of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and Director of Strategic Planning for the New York Academy of Sciences before coming to the society of Women Engineers in 2004. She became Executive Director and CEO in 2014.

What is the Society of Women Engineers, and can you give me a little background as to its founding and history? [1:28]
It is a professional organization for women in engineering. Our mission is to empower women to achieve their full potential in careers as engineers and leaders, expand the image of engineering and technical professions as a positive force in improving the quality of life, and to demonstrate the value of diversity and inclusion. We have been around since 1950, helping women succeed and advance in their careers. We have a little over 40,000 members worldwide, and that includes girls pursuing engineering careers, seasoned professionals, and women in retirement.

The organization came about because women were very much the minority in the workplace and engineering school, and didn’t have a voice, so forming their own organization was a great way to support each other, have a network, and help each other learn and grow and succeed in the profession.

Why do you think women are still under-represented in the STEM fields and in engineering? [5:08]
Research shows us the #1 factor is unconscious bias. A study we did in 2016 that focused on the workplace found that almost 40% of women engineers leave the engineering workforce by mid-career, and the #1 factor was the unconscious bias that affects things like hiring, promotion, and compensation. A lot of the work we do with our employer partners is talking about that and what they can do to make managers aware of unconscious bias and also best practices to be bias interrupters, to let women and other under-represented minorities succeed and advance in their organization. This bias exists in K-12 education and at university level as well, where it’s perceived that engineering is not a career for women, or women are not interested in things that involve math and science, and that just isn’t true. Women do exceptionally well in AP courses in math and science, and well through middle school show interest in innovation. I can’t think of a career that is more impactful than engineering, because it touches almost everything in our daily lives – it’s problem solving, and math and science are some of the tools used in that, but it’s really about improving lives. The more we can do to break those stereotypes the better, so we work with educators, parents, and girls to break them.

I noticed the benefits of membership fall broadly into these categories: community, learning and professional development, and scholarships/awards. What does community mean at SWE? [8:03]
It’s really about the community of support. I’ve been with the organization since 2004, and have never been out talking to members and not heard, “Until I found SWE I thought I was the only one.” It’s so important for women to know they are not alone, and that SWE is a place to turn to for advice, an ear to listen, to understand what you are going through, and talk about technical things you’re working on. Also, role models and mentors are so important – the number of female faculty in engineering fields is still pretty low, so connecting with other women in these roles, being able to “see it to be it” (successful women doing really phenomenal, interesting, and impactful work) is critical. Having that place you know you can connect is so important.

SWE is international and engineering is a very broad field. How does SWE support someone located in North Carolina, for example, and working in aerospace engineering? [10:27]
One of the great things about SWE is that our members come from all over the world and all technology disciplines. We have a lot of face-to-face events both in the US and outside. We have sections and affiliates like some organizations have chapters, and that is where a lot of the activity really takes place. You can connect with people in your local community, and even if they are from a different discipline they know the field and can talk about work/life challenges. If you are looking for someone in your own discipline we have a robust directory, or you can meet people locally with this type of expertise, or we also have online forums and social media. Our members and stakeholders are very good at finding each other, but we do strive to support local activities so women have a place to connect face to face.

Is there any kind of formal mentoring program offered through SWE? [12:10]
We haven’t had a formal mentoring structure to this point, though we’ve recently formed a group in one of our committees to look at formalizing it a bit more. Some parts of the country are doing it, and we are looking at best practices and how can we share that across the organization. What I have seen in a lot of my work with corporate partners is that informal mentoring seems to be more successful than formal programs – people finding each other as opposed to some elaborate matching system. So we are looking at a hybrid of that – figuring out how people find each other and how you have those successful mentor/mentee relationships.

Does SWE help its members find jobs and with professional development? [13:15]
Yes. First with finding jobs, at our career fair at our annual conference, we have 300+ employers from all sectors of engineering looking to hire everyone from interns to seasoned professionals. We also have an online job board, and the last 3-4 years we have had a virtual career fair as well for women with at least three years of experience. We find also the SWE network has been effective in helping others find their next career opportunity.

In terms of professional development we have an online learning portal, as well as face to face conferences and workshops to provide leadership skills needed in addition to technical expertise.

One other thing I’d like to mention is our STEM re-entry taskforce, for women who’ve had a career break. We worked with a company called iRelaunch, who previously had worked with women primarily in the financial services industry and had real success. They talked with SWE about whether we’d be interested in piloting something, we got with some employer partners about doing a pilot, and now we are going into our third year of running the program, with employers bringing women back to the workforce in “returnships.” Experienced professionals are offered paid positions from eight weeks to six months with potential fulltime employment at the end. We are having phenomenal success with this, from women with a few years break up to 20 years. It has been really groundbreaking for organizations and our members to tap into that talent pool. It is a win-win – a chance for a returner to see if it’s time to return, and for the organization to see the talents and skills a person brings. With the three cohorts there have probably been about 300-400 women.

What kind of support does SWE offer college and graduate students or applicants? [18:38]
We have Grad SWE, which is a community of graduate students with a lot of virtual activities. We also have sections on most university campuses for women to connect with each other, and the women in academia committee, for mentoring and role models. We also do an annual academic workshop for women in engineering for junior faculty or more experienced faculty looking to move into department chair or dean roles and helping them get the leadership skills they need in addition to technical expertise, like financial acumen or other skills needed when managing budgets, employees, and other things.

Can we dive into the topic of scholarships offered through SWE? [23:45]
We have a robust scholarship program. This year we will award approximately $750,000 in scholarships to women pursuing undergraduate and graduate engineering degrees. Local sections often have scholarships as well. A big part of what we do is work with employers and foundations to raise money to support those scholarships because we know financial barriers can be huge. Some scholarships provide SWE membership, some internships with the organizations who sponsor, and there are a lot of resources once you become a SWE scholarship recipient that you have access to that are very beneficial.

Do you have any SWE sections for high school students? [25:19]
We do. We call it SWE Next, which is our pre-college program. We have all sorts of virtual programming as well as events for girls to do hands on engineering activities, to meet engineers and engineering students, and to learn about scholarship opportunities and proper education preparation. We also do concurrent things for parents and educators. Once you are a senior in high school you are eligible to apply for scholarships. I encourage anyone considering an engineering career path to get involved with SWE Next to educate yourself.

Can you tell me about the upcoming SWE conference in October? [26:42]
It’s going to be October 18-20 in Minneapolis, and we are anticipating 14,000-15,000 women engineers and engineering students to be there. There is unbelievable programming, and tracks for all career stages. We have things relevant for a junior in college, a woman moving into a leadership role, and everything in between. We have workshops, poster presentations, keynote speakers, plenary panels, everything you can imagine. You’ll learn all about the skills you need to advance your career, interact with employers from all sectors, and have a chance to build your network. I don’t know of another place where you can have access to women at all career stages. I encourage anyone in the field, considering the field, looking for their next career opportunity, or any employer looking for diverse talent to attend.

Where do you see SWE going from here? [28:50]
There is still so much work to be done. For us we want to see parity in the profession. We want to see women equally represented in all career stages and in all industries, so for us we’ll be continuing the work we’re doing, expanding the community, working with more employer partners, and expanding what it really means to have an inclusive environment. Women are currently about 12% of the engineering workforce, and 19% of engineering bachelor’s degrees, so we still have a long way to go.

What would you like listeners to know that we haven’t discussed? [30:03]
The career opportunities there are for women who pursue the profession. I don’t talk to an employer in any sector that is not looking to increase their gender diversity. I think we are finally past the conversation about why diversity in the workforce is important – most have seen diverse teams perform better, and come up with better solutions. So what I would say to women and girls is this is a profession that wants you, has opportunity, is well-paying, and has lots of job security. We have women in aerospace, biomedical, automotive, energy, all things that improve our lives. When we think about the planet and how we make sure everyone has food, water, and energy, we need diverse talent to solve these issues.

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Related Links:

• Applying to Graduate Engineering Programs: What You Need to Know

• Society of Women Engineers

• SWE Grad

SWE Next

• SWE Podcast About Bias Story

Related Shows:

• International Students: How to Finance Your U.S. Education

• MIT Sloan Fellow, User Experience Expert, and Busy Mom

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16 Grad School Application Mistakes You Don’t Want to Make

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

The post Society of Women Engineers: The Community for Women in Engineering [Episode 262] 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

_________________

Linda Abraham
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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4 More Elements to Telling an Attention-Grabbing Story  [#permalink]

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New post 06 Jun 2018, 09:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: 4 More Elements to Telling an Attention-Grabbing Story
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In our last post, we illustrated 5 key story elements with these opening application essay lines:

The moment I found the lump, I suspected my life was about to change – in a big way. It was mid-May 2011. I was a busy consultant in McKinsey’s Chicago office, the proud father of a boy about to turn one, and a generally happy guy in his mid-20s.

It was tempting to wish the lump would just go away, and for a few days that was my strategy. I didn’t even tell my wife. But soon I recognized that knowledge is power, and made an appointment with my doctor. Within a week I had a diagnosis: cancer.

These seven lines contain the first 5 of our important story elements:

• Storytelling element #1: A killer opening – entering the story in the middle of an intense scene

• Storytelling element #2: Context – mid-20s consultant, Chicago, 2011

• Storytelling element #3: Stakes – life and death

• Storytelling element #4: Obstacles – cancer

• Storytelling element #5: Character – fear and determination

You should include these key elements in all your story-based essays. Note that this does not mean your stories need to be as life changing as the one in our example; we’re talking about structure and storytelling technique here.

And now we’ll jump into the next 4 of our key storytelling elements:

Storytelling element #6: Adding a twist

So what happens next in our tale? (Incidentally, a well-told story uses these elements to make readers ask that question again and again, pulling them through the story.)

Once I got past the initial shock, I discovered an unexpected challenge: choosing among major surgery, two rounds of chemotherapy, and “surveillance” (i.e., regular testing to see if the cancer was spreading). The options had the exact same survival rate (very high), but very different side-effect profiles. For example, the surgery was associated with potential nerve damage, while the chemo could have resulted in lower lung capacity.

This part of our story includes a twist and further obstacles. Twists, or surprise turns in stories – in this case, the challenge of choosing treatment – are not essential for grad school essays, but they can certainly make them more engaging: a teammate with a secret, a client’s abrupt shift in expectations, etc. In this story, the unexpected challenge also represented an obstacle, in that our courageous subject had to choose from three very different treatments with similar levels of effectiveness.

Storytelling element #7: Detailing the process

Here’s what happened next:

It was time for some deep research: with my wife’s help and inputs from my oncologist and other doctors, I pored over journal articles and other materials to understand my treatment options and their risks. For example, we learned that the surveillance course could take over five years before one could consider themselves cancer-free.

Here we have more evidence of character (how our guy took a methodical approach, rather than just picking a treatment impulsively or based on one doctor’s opinion), along with process, or the exact steps he took to approach the obstacle. Too many applicants leave out their process, skipping from “My team faced several major hurdles” to “The client loved our solution, and I got a raise.” You need to tell the adcom what you did, how you did it, and ideally how you engaged others to overcome the challenge as well. Even our cancer story here includes a team element (the wife and doctors).

Storytelling elements #8 and #9: Sharing the outcome AND Talking about lessons learned

After weeks of research and deliberation, I opted for two rounds of outpatient chemotherapy. I said goodbye to my hair and hello to needles and nausea. The first week went well. But as I neared the second, my doctor called: the chemo had pushed my white blood cell count too low, compromising my immune system. I would have to wait. For two weeks I avoided raw fruit and vegetables and stayed inside as much as possible. My white blood cell count rose, and I completed the second week of chemo.

Now, over eight years later, I’m considered cured, a survivor. The only physical residue of my treatment is slightly wavier hair. But the experience reinforced the importance of a proactive approach (I found out most men wait over six months to get lumps checked), of careful due diligence in health and other matters, and of never giving up. I carry those lessons into everything I do. So I was right: the lump changed my life in a big way; but I never could have guessed how positive those changes would be.

The last part of our story brings more process (how our survivor made a decision) and another twist (his low white blood cell count), along with the outcome and lessons learned. These last two elements typically tie together: the outcome (surviving cancer) reinforced multiple lessons, as noted above. It’s easy to spend too little (i.e., none) or too much (i.e., paragraphs) time on lessons learned; generally 1-3 lines gets the job done.

It’s also always recommended to wrap up your story by returning to your opening, to end with a killer ending with a broader theme or key realization or glimpse of the future.

Our story is just over 400 words, but it has all the important elements.

Do you need help writing your attention-grabbing story? Check out our 1-on-1 services for more information on how we can help you use story elements to write effective essays.

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Related Resources:

5 Fatal Flaws to Avoid in Your Statement of Purpose, a free guide

3 Tips for Highlighting Your Strengths in Your Application Essays

• How Personal is Too Personal?

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

The post 4 More Elements to Telling an Attention-Grabbing Story 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

_________________

Linda Abraham
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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How to Research MBA Programs  [#permalink]

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New post 07 Jun 2018, 10:01
FROM Accepted.com Blog: How to Research MBA Programs
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There is a sea of information out there: Make sure you’re not swimming in circles.

You’ve defined your goals and assessed your qualifications. Now it’s time to move on to the program research stage of the MBA admissions process. There is a sea of information out there: rankings, books, MBA program websites, MBA fairs, Poets & Quants, newspaper and magazine articles on MBA programs, student and adcom blogs, school open houses, etc.

Let’s dive right in!

Here is some advice to help you add structure to the process so you’re not swimming in circles after you dive in.

Use the Rankings… Sort of.

If you’ve read our blog posts, vlogs, etc., you know we caution against relying exclusively and uncritically on rankings to decide where to go (so that means no – “I’m just gonna apply to the top 5”). Well, here we’re going to suggest the opposite: use the rankings…at the beginning of this research phase. They’re helpful at the start.

Below you’ll find 6 key steps for doing MBA program research in a way that a) yields meaningful info for decision-making and list-making, and b) is efficient and focused – conserving and respecting your precious time.

Step 1 – Look at Rankings

With your competitive profile in mind, look at several broad MBA rankings. Determine what levels/ranges of programs for which you’re competitive generally (taking into account reasonable reaches, on-pars, and maybe safeties). Note the plural – rankings – as each has its idiosyncrasies (U.S. News, Financial Times, Bloomberg Businessweek, etc.). Sometimes a program will be below or above your target competitive range, but it still might make sense to apply for some reason (it’s in the following steps that you’ll gain the additional info needed to make this decision).

Step 2 – Talk to People

At this point it’s good to start talking to people with MBA experience – colleagues, friends, mentors, etc. – and add a qualitative dimension to the above step. Ask about their impressions and experiences, and assess how their views align (or not) with what you gleaned from the rankings vis-à-vis competitive fit.

Step 3 – Search Industry/Function-Specific Rankings

Research industry- and/or function-specific rankings in your area(s) of interest. Identify programs from these rankings that overlap with those from Step 1 (and factoring in any learning from Step 2).

There may be programs in your competitive range that do meet your academic needs but don’t show up on specialization rankings (e.g., Kellogg isn’t known as a finance school but offers much in this area and might be great for someone in PE who will be doing a lot of managing; Columbia doesn’t often appear on entrepreneurship rankings but is quite strong in it). So indulge in some unstructured exploring, to “see what you might see.”

Step 4 – Start Digging Deeper

Go to the source – the websites of programs that interest you. Look for specifics that you care about (structure of curriculum, flexibility, strong concentrations, students from a given industry or geographic region, etc.). Listen to your gut as well as an objective response; does it feel like a good fit?

Step 5 – Go to MBA Fairs and Visit Schools

What better way to understand your fit with a school than to see the students, professors, and administrators in action? You will get the most out of MBA fairs, school information sessions, and school visits at this point in your research, after you already have a good idea of what each program offers and how you’d fit in competitively.

Step 6 – Putting the Puzzle Pieces Together

You’re narrowing and refining a list. Now you can spend time meaningfully (i.e., with informed focus) on adcom and student blog posts, searching the web for articles and information, and attending school information sessions, and of course continuing to talk to people with MBA program experience and insight. You should now have a finalized or near-finalized list of programs to apply to. You can continue refining the list and deciding on other programs to add later.

NOTE: This is a guideline, not a rigid process. Always stay open to discovery – maybe you’ll come across a school in a blog or a respected colleague suggests a program you hadn’t considered. Maybe you thought you wanted to stay in the U.S. but got seduced by INSEAD…Who doesn’t love a pleasant surprise?

Do you need help discovering the MBA programs that are the best fit for you, or assistance on any other element of the application process? Review our MBA Admissions Services and work one-on-one with an expert advisor who will help you get ACCEPTED.

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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:

Best MBA Programs: A Guide to Selecting the Right One, a free guide

Are You a Good Fit for Your Target MBA Programs?

Top 6 Tips for Visiting Business Schools

Tags: MBA Admissions

The post How to Research MBA Programs 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

_________________

Linda Abraham
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

Follow Accepted on Twitter
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