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# Alternate Transcript Question

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Intern
Joined: 20 Aug 2009
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20 May 2010, 19:19
Alex,

My GPA is outside the 80% range of most of the schools I am targeting, so I decided to take a Macro class at my local community college, I received an A-. During undergrad, (Finance major) I took Statistics 2, and also received an A-. Will the two A- grades prove my GPA is not representative of my true abilities to the admissions committees?

-Thanks

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21 May 2010, 12:21
If your GPA is out of range, you should still be fine so long as your GMAT is exceptional (i.e. if you're looking at a top 16 school, that means 720+). The coursework and individual course grades help a little, but again if your GPA overall sucked then your GMAT better rock.
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09 Mar 2012, 22:45
Alex,

If I can jump in on this as well, I have a similar question. I have a 3.2/4.0 in history and geophysics from a top 30 school. Not a show stopper by any means but a bit below average for most top schools that I am targeting. I recently decided to augment a few courses as I am about two years out from applying.

Here's the rub: I am an active duty Navy SEAL headed out on a deployment during which I will have intermittent internet connectivity at best. The location is expected to be austere. Excelsior Online University offers a great program called MBA Boot Camp for finance, accounting, and statistics. These classes are "teacher facilitated" which means I could complete them at my pace which is ideal because of the circumstances on deployment. The problem is that the courses are not credited towards a degree. This is part of Excelsior's Professional Development program and there is no formal transcript that is furnished upon completion. I spoke with Excelsior however and they are more than happy to produce a formal letter head with a transcript providing an actual GPA and grades based on my progress. Nonetheless, it is less than a formal transcript. The program is very affordable and they offer excellent support to military personnel.

The classes and the pace is ideal for my situation. It is about all I can do. Should I pursue these courses even though they are not part of a formal degree program?

Thanks!!!
Duff

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10 Mar 2012, 10:48
Duff wrote:
Alex,

If I can jump in on this as well, I have a similar question. I have a 3.2/4.0 in history and geophysics from a top 30 school. Not a show stopper by any means but a bit below average for most top schools that I am targeting. I recently decided to augment a few courses as I am about two years out from applying.

Here's the rub: I am an active duty Navy SEAL headed out on a deployment during which I will have intermittent internet connectivity at best. The location is expected to be austere. Excelsior Online University offers a great program called MBA Boot Camp for finance, accounting, and statistics. These classes are "teacher facilitated" which means I could complete them at my pace which is ideal because of the circumstances on deployment. The problem is that the courses are not credited towards a degree. This is part of Excelsior's Professional Development program and there is no formal transcript that is furnished upon completion. I spoke with Excelsior however and they are more than happy to produce a formal letter head with a transcript providing an actual GPA and grades based on my progress. Nonetheless, it is less than a formal transcript. The program is very affordable and they offer excellent support to military personnel.

The classes and the pace is ideal for my situation. It is about all I can do. Should I pursue these courses even though they are not part of a formal degree program?

Thanks!!!
Duff

Duff, that should be fine. Although while your GPA isn't that great, the adcoms will cut you more slack since you are a military officer (and a SEAL no less). Regardless of whether you enroll in this Excelsior program or not, what will matter more is your GMAT. If you are able to score reasonably well (680+ and ideally 720+), then most adcoms will likely overlook your GPA completely (it's not great but its' not horrible either - "horrible" would be under 3.0). Good luck
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Alex Chu
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14 Mar 2012, 20:23
Alex,

Another question. I will be sending it GRE scores, not GMAT. I am also eying several Military Fellowships and Scholarships and two of which only accept the GRE. I only mention that to assure you it is not because the test is considered by some as "easier." Regardless, I have mulled this over extensively and I decided on the GRE for which I am now prepared. I have spoken to a few admissions reps and they assure me it is equally weighed. What's your take on that given the other aspects of a my profile? Thanks!!

Duff

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15 Mar 2012, 23:30
GRE is fine - don't overthink it.
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Alex Chu
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15 Mar 2012, 23:58
Thats the best advice I've heard yet. Thanks Alex

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25 Mar 2012, 12:45
Alex,
A wanted to put together a more formal profile now that I sat for the GRE for the first time.

Stats up front:
29/m
*3.2/4.0 from a top 30. History Major, Geophysics minor
*Varsity Lacrosse, ROTC
*GRE: 321 (161 V, 160 Q). On the ETS converter that comes to a 680 GMAT

Work Experience : 7 Years Navy SEAL Officer. 5 Deployments to date with combat.
-Consistent leadership in a variety of austere and high profile locations.
-Senior level coordination within DOD
-Excellent lessons learned in terms of personnel management
-Task Unit commander in charge of \$25M in equipment overseas.
-Consistent high performance in my service record. Ranked #1 of 16 peers (also SEAL Officers) on most recent eval period

Extra Curricular: Involved heavily in several charity foundations and recruiting campaigns in support of the SEAL community.
-Repeated visitor to my Alma Mater as a speaker on Leadership for the Athletic Department.
-Volunteered at foundation events for the Wounded Warrior Foundation.

Hobbies:
-Lacrosse
-Soccer
-Golf

Future goals:
I love the experience of leading people and I have a passion for working within small teams. I also feel as if the driving forces of today's global environment are economic in nature. While I think I could find employment within the private sector by separating from the service now, I am looking for a management role. General Management seems like a great fit and I seek an MBA to cross into the private sector in a position that I think is more fitting. As for the timing, I am coming to the end of my operational leadership time and I am at the point in my career where my experience is both relevant and recent. Personally, I am also looking to provide a lifestyle more conducive to a family as opposed to the continuous deployment
My decision to take the GRE is likely to be a question. I chose to take it because I want to remain competitive for several of the fellowships offered in the service. Princeton's Woodrow Wilson School among others only accepts the GRE. This is purely to keep options open.

Summary: I feel I can articulate my leadership experience and I actively stay in touch with fellow members of my community who are now in business school. I also feel that my essays will have tangible examples of what I think ADCOMs are looking for. I will not be making a move to business school for a few years but I have spent some time getting to know the process. I will likely retake the GRE to get to the 90-92% percentile. Given what I have to work with now though, how do I look for the following schools?

HBS
Wharton
Tuck
Darden
Fuqua
Johnson
Owen

Regards,
Duff

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26 Mar 2012, 21:39
Duff,

To be honest, I don't think you need to go beyond the top 16.

As a SEAL (or any officer in the US special forces units), you will be competitive for *any* top 16 school, including H/S/W. In short, don't screw up your application, and you'll have a decent shot of getting in. B-schools have had great experiences with US military vets and particularly special forces guys (they tend to do well in b-school, and employers also covet them), so adcoms will have a pretty favorable impression of you just by virtue of who you are. You probably already know this and you may be trying to be hyper aware about not being over confident, but I don't think that should be an issue.

Finally, the GRE is fine.
_________________

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27 Mar 2012, 22:08
Thank you very much for the positive words up front. It is very encouraging to hear I am competitive.

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29 Mar 2012, 08:55
Ha! Jaded - probably. But it's not far from the reality of what you'll find in corporate life. Simply put, employees don't care to the same degree about their group/company as a military unit does for its own men. And while certain aspects of your leadership experiences are transferable, it still requires a different kind of leadership.
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Re: Alternate Transcript Question   [#permalink] 29 Mar 2012, 08:55
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