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Columbia

Columbia

FINAL DECISION
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Debrief posted on  Nov 29 2019 [#permalink] Columbia, Full Time MBA
Off Campus with Alumni Interviewed on: Nov 06 2019 Final Decision: Admitted

"Timeline: 1. Applied by ED deadline but put a hold on my application in anticipation of a higher GMAT score. 2. Received an invitation to interview 6 days after submitting my updated score. 3. Interviewed 12 days after invitation to interview. 4. Interview feedback submitted by interviewer 4 days after interview. 5. Received acceptance call 1 week after interview feedback submitted. Match: My first match was a recent grad that works in consulting and had been recently placed far away so I requested a new match and was paired with a very impressive grad from '95. The interview: My interviewer works in risk management and I work in biotech, so I was nervous about the interview. I met him at his work a few minutes early and he took me to a small conference room. He started by explaining the interview process, which was nice. Questions he asked me: 1. Why MBA and not a PhD? (Very expected given my background) 2. Why Columbia? 3. What do I plan to do after Columbia? 3a. Who is the biggest player in this space? 4. What's my leadership style? 5. What's my plan B? 6. What questions haven't I asked you? His final question really caught me off guard! I had plenty of questions for him, but not questions for myself. I rushed into the interview because I felt behind in the process between the delayed GMAT submission and my first match falling through. I ended up doing fine with this question - I turned it to culture fit - but I was at a loss at first. Questions I asked him: I explained my background was very technical in the sciences and asked him what risk management was. I of course had researched risk management and knew the exact amount of risk that was in his portfolio, so I was able to chime in with more educated comments/questions as he explained the basics. The conversation then transitioned to world politics, which was more comfortable for me. We also talked about his daughter, who graduated with the same major as I did and works in a similar industry. I think this was a very lucky connection that helped us understand each other better. I ended by asking him for any advice and was really happy to hear his response. General notes/advice: My interviewer seemed pleased with my honesty - it seems he was used to people playing the interview game a bit too hard. Perhaps it was easy for me to be honest because CBS was my top school and I had really thought about everything before applying. I recommend making a list of all possible questions you think you might be asked and even questions you wish to be asked. I sent him an email thanking him later that day and he has forwarded me events at CBS that he thinks would interest me. He also sent a congratulatory email after I was accepted (I suppose they are notified by the school), and I expect to keep in touch with him moving forward."

rosereeb from United States GMAT 750; Pharmaceuticals and Biotech
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Debrief posted on  Sep 18 2019 [#permalink] Columbia, J-Term MBA
Off Campus with Alumni Interviewed on: Sep 12 2019 Final Decision: Admitted

"Timeline: Interview Invitation: 20 days after application submission Interview: 12 days after the invitation (used to be 9 days but the interviewer requested a last minute change) Interview feedback: submitted the same day after the interview Offer call: 5 days after the interview (incl. a weekend) I worked for a US firm but was in China at the time so I did the interview there. The interview happened at his office and scheduled for an hour. It turned out to be an hour and half (thus I assume we had a great chat)..I emailed my resume to the interviewer when I scheduled the meeting, but he didn't print it out on the interview day. So remember to bring a hardcopy in any case! 1. The interview started with a question about my current company, how its business doing in China, and if I have any business suggestions. 2. Walk me through your resume: he interrupted several times asking for details/follow-up questions. 3. What's my plan after CBS: short term and long term goals. I mentioned that I chose Jterm b/c I already have personal/family network in the industry, he challenged it and asked what are my competitiveness other than network. 4. I have listed several ECs (only the org names) I did back to college time and he also asked about them. So make sure you really know every word you said in resume 5. A little bit touch on why CBS 6. 3-5 adj. words to describe yourself with concrete examples We also chatted a bit about travel, my current company, common acquaintance etc. He mentioned several alumnus he knew in the industry I was interested in. In general, I felt like my interviewer is a serious and straightforward (but still nice) person. Prepared to get challenged and really know the sxxt you are talking about. Obviously I did ok here, and good luck to everyone else."

This user wants to stay Private from China GMAT 720; WE: 36 months; Internet and New Media
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Debrief posted on  Aug 27 2019 [#permalink] Columbia, J-Term MBA
Off Campus with Alumni Interviewed on: Aug 21 2019 Final Decision: Admitted

"Interviewed in New Delhi, India We met in the coffee shop of a centrally located hotel in Delhi. The interviewer had asked me to bring a hard copy of my CV The interview was fairly standard: 1) Walk me through your CV 2) Why MBA? 3) Why now? 4) Why CBS? 5) Which other schools are you applying to? 6) How will you recruit in India while studying in the US (my story involves me coming back to India immediately post my MBA) 7) Short term/long term goals? 8) Plan B? 9)What leadership positions will you take up at CBS 10) Give me your top 3 stock ideas (i work in public/private equity). He had a follow up questions on this 11) Any questions for him? He spoke about his experience at CBS. At the end of the interview he told me that he would recommend (i relaxed a bit after i heard this) The interview last about 30 mins and he took notes while i spoke."

Reprised0901 from India GMAT 740; WE: 80 months; Investment Banking
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Debrief posted on  Aug 28 2019 [#permalink] Columbia, Full Time MBA
Off Campus with Alumni Interviewed on: Aug 20 2019 Final Decision: Admitted

"Standard set of questions: 1. Self-intro 2. Resume questions 3. Why MBA? 4. Why CBS? 5. What are your short term and long term goal? 6. How would you differentiate yourself to achieve your short term goal? 7. What is your leadership style? 8. What are your strength and weakness? 9. How did you familiarize yourself with CBS? 10. Any questions for me? The interview ended in around 40 minutes. And then I asked her questions for another 20 minutes."

dp720760 from Hong Kong GMAT 750; WE: 60 months; Other
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Debrief posted on  Jul 24 2019 [#permalink] Columbia, Full Time MBA
Off Campus with Alumni Interviewed on: Jul 24 2019 Final Decision: Matriculating

"Interviewed today with a CBS's alum in São Paulo - Brazil and got no big surprise at all. You can see below a quick summary: * He asked standard questions: -Introduced himself (5 min) -Tell me about yourself and your career (10 min) -Why CBS/MBA/ and Why now? (15 min) -Plan B - Schools, examples, career goals, ... (10 min) -Any questions for me? - I asked him ~6 questions (15 min) * The interview was very open and casual. I didn't feel pressured at all. I emailed my resume to my interviewer beforehand, and he had printed it out, taken notes, and had a few questions written down that we talked about."

This user wants to stay Private from Brazil GMAT 740; WE: 32 months; Venture Capital
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Debrief posted on  Jun 23 2019 [#permalink] Columbia, J-Term MBA
Off Campus with Alumni Interviewed on: Jun 19 2019 Final Decision: Matriculating

"My interview was with an alumni at his office. It lasted about 40 minutes. It was casual and more of a conversation than an interview. He asked fairly standard questions: -Walk me through your resume/tell me a little bit about yourself -Why CBS/MBA? -Plan B -Any questions for me? Much of the interview was on the last question above, and this gave me a chance to learn much more about the program. We talked about his favorite trips/professors/classes, etc. I emailed my resume to my interviewer beforehand, and he had printed it out, taken notes, and had a few questions written down that we talked about. After the interview, that night I got an email that CBS received the interview feedback and would be sending me a final decision within 2 weeks! My advice for people preparing for an interview is to do your research on CBS and understand how it can help you achieve your goals. I think many CBS interviews are similar to mine (relaxed/conversational), and so don't get too nervous. I actually even enjoyed the experience!"

Zakyfish22 from United States GMAT 740; WE: 74 months; Venture Capital
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Debrief posted on  Mar 03 2019 [#permalink] Columbia, EMBA NY Sat Track
Skype Interviewed on: Feb 27 2019 Final Decision: Interviewed

"It was pretty simple. Done in 40 mins. Was with an admissions AD. Went through my resume and she followed up with questions around why CBS and now and how it will help. She already had reviewed my application so had knowledge of my background. Mentioned that I should hear back in 2 weeks."

EMBAapplicant from United States GMAT 680;
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Debrief posted on  Feb 13 2019 [#permalink] Columbia, Full Time MBA
Off Campus with Alumni Interviewed on: Feb 01 2019 Final Decision: Admitted

"Sharing my experience because I benefited from the debriefs here in my prep. Overall, I think because each interview is with an alum and not adcom, they will vary. Mine felt really low stress. Met my alum at a chain cafe during the week in the afternoon. I went full business dress, he was in jeans and a sweater, but never made me feel overdressed or out of place. We picked a table in the back (Each paid for our own drink, for those who wonder about this) and sat down to chat. The interview was pretty informal - he mentioned at the beginning that it was really just to get to know me and make sure I was normal and would fit in at CBS. He said he thinks CBS has about 90% of applicants figured out pre-interview and the interviews were just to get a real-life opinion. He introduced himself and what he did - a similar path to my goals - and then asked me to walk him through my resume. After that he asked why I wanted to get an MBA and what my goals were. Then he said "Any questions for me while I come up with some more questions for you?" So I asked him questions about his career path after CBS and his time there. His responses felt like a great pitch on the school and we talked about New York a bit. I think he asked me one more question about "why New York" specifically, and then we chatted for maybe 10 more minutes. At the end he told me to be in touch if I needed anything and that he would submit my debrief that night. The interview maybe lasted 30 minutes and only had a few actual questions, the rest was just some talk about my past and his and his time in school. He also gave me some very good recruitment advice and thoughts on where to work in my career. I left with the feeling that it went very well but that it also was almost too easy. I'm glad it worked out in the end and hope he'll continue to be a contact in my career."

This user wants to stay Private from United States GMAT 750; Consulting
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Debrief posted on  Nov 23 2018 [#permalink] Columbia
Skype Interviewed on: Nov 19 2018 Final Decision: Admitted

"As my alumni interviewer was not available, I ended up scheduling a Skype interview with the adcom since we were running out of time. I was a little nervous about an adcom interview, since per my understanding - most CBS interviews are in-person alumni interviews. But, it was nothing to stress over - I had a very smooth experience, and the adcom was very quick and accommodating in scheduling my interview. It started with my interviewer sharing his background, and explaining the structure and time of the interview (i.e., 30 mins). He mentioned that he had gone through my application and may ask some related questions. The questions were fairly straightforward such as tell me about yourself, why MBA, Why Columbia, and example of a time I failed. He also left 10 mins to answer my questions. I received my admit 2 days after the interview via phone."

bizschool123 from India GMAT 720; WE: 48 months;
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Debrief posted on  Jun 17 2019 [#permalink] Columbia, Full Time MBA
Off Campus with Alumni Interviewed on: Nov 16 2018 Final Decision: Matriculating

"I interviewed with an alumna who was my third match. The first two alumni weren't available for a meetup within the specified time window as they were travelling. This was a promising sign for me as to the strength of CBS alumni in the city. I met the interviewer at her office. She works in private equity and happened to know about the firm I worked at as well, so a strong connection was made right at the onset. The interview was as relaxed as I could've hoped for. After a few questions about my goals and why I chose CBS over other top schools, the interview turned into a dialogue between two friends about private equity and data science. The questions that I was asked are below: 1. You seem to be doing great at your current job. Why get an MBA instead of continuing to work for your firm? 2. Why get an MBA now? 3. What is the one professional accomplishment that you're most proud of? 4. Talk to me about a time when you struggled with a project. 5. Did you consider other M7 schools besides CBS? 6. New York City is crowded, expensive, not a college town, etc. How, in your opinion, do the positives outweigh the negatives? We were done with these question within the first 15 minutes of our 40 minute conversation. After that, I asked her about her own experiences at CBS, the cluster system, and how she's leveraged the CBS network through the course of her career. Later, I combined her field, private equity, with mine, data science, and discussed how machine learning could transform private equity the way it has asset management. I also talked to her about an interview of hers that had been published in a local newspaper. So, a tip that I have to share is that one should do thorough research on the interviewer and show them that one's professional experiences can be leveraged in their field as well. At the conclusion of the interview, I was told by the interviewer that she hoped I get admitted, so the conversation ended on a rather positive note - not that it was anything but positive throughout."

This user wants to stay Private GMAT 760;
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Debrief posted on  Jul 13 2018 [#permalink] Columbia
Off Campus with Alumni Interviewed on: Sep 28 2016 Final Decision: Denied with Interview

"Interview for J-Term. I read through all the interview reports here and thought I’d add my experience to this list. I was invited to interview and matched with one alumni (who turned down the request). It wasn’t until I contacted the 3rd alumni that I was finally able to schedule an interview. In total it took 12 days from the interview invite to my interview date. Quite a challenging wait because I was anxious to get it over with as you can imagine. The interviewer started off the interview by asking me: a) Which other MBA programs I had applied to? (None other than Columbia) b) Why was I not applying to Stanford? So in order to answer the second question, I backtracked and covered the standard questions – Walk through of my résumé, Why MBA, Why Now, Why Columbia, and finally why not Stanford. The interview then took a turn away from the question list and we got into a conversation about start-ups (because my interviewer works in one and I am looking to start-up in NYC). Somewhere along the line he remembered that he needed to take some notes and so he scanned through a list that he had on his computer and said that the only question we hadn’t discussed was “What is your 5 year post-MBA goal?” The whole interview was a conversation and so there was a back and forth with me asking him contextual questions throughout the conversation. All in all – quite a relaxed experience. My interviewer also told me that he does tons of interviews and would recommend that I be admitted to Columbia. Of course – I’m very excited about this but the game’s not over till its over. Waiting to hear from Columbia!"

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Debrief posted on  Jul 13 2018 [#permalink] Columbia
Off Campus with Alumni Interviewed on: Sep 11 2016

"Interview was exactly as described here by everyone else. We held the interview at his office in a meeting room. It started off as a normal job interview and slowly changed into a conversation. I also felt that he placed a lot of weight on the time that he gave me to ask questions (remember to tailor your questions to the interviewer – no point asking a interviewer who graduated 20 years ago which class to take or how was his time at CBS). Questions that he asked me: 1. Why an MBA (he asked me to use the opportunity as well to walk him through my CV)? 2. Why Columbia and why New York? 4. Do you have any particular classes or professors in mind? 5. As I am in investment banking he asked me to detail a recent deal that I worked on (he went into technical questions – not valuations but rather what is the driver for the industry, how would x, y and z impact valuation, etc – but they were basic questions nothing compared to a real banking interview) 6. Give me a situation where you worked in a team. 7. Give me a situation where you had difficulty in concluding a deal. 6. Give me a situation where you had difficulty with a team member. 8. How many people have worked for you (juniors), in what capacity and how did you manage them? 9. What are you future plans; both short term and long term? 9.1 What would you do if your plans failed? I told him that I would like to return to my home country post-MBA to which he responded if this was absolute or if I am flexible and willing to relocate and why? 10. Have I spoken to alumni and / or current students and who are they – he didn’t care about names rather how do I know them, etc. After about an hour he gave me about 15 min to ask questions."

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Debrief posted on  Jul 13 2018 [#permalink] Columbia
Off Campus with Alumni Interviewed on: Aug 30 2016 Final Decision: Admitted

"This forum was a great resource in helping me prepare for the interview and get accepted to CBS, and I wanted to submit my experience in order to help others in the future. Where as in previous years, it seemed like the CBS admissions office gives you a list of 6 people to contact. This year, the admissions office only offered one alumnus to contact. We set up the interview in a coffee shop – casual setting, very relaxed format. I wore a blazer, and the interviewer was in casual wear. She started by giving me a bit of background on herself, and dove into questions for me. I was asked: Tell me about yourself. Why MBA, and why Columbia? Why an MBA in the longer context of your future goals? Tell me about a time when you were a leader. What do you do outside of work? What activities do you plan on being involved with at CBS? Why an MBA even though you majored in business for undergrad? What if you don’t get into the career you planned for? Any questions for me? Overall, the interviewer was very encouraging and made sure I was comfortable. She took copious notes, and noted down the details of the classes and activities I said I planned to be involved in at CBS. The conversation lasted about one hour in total."

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Debrief posted on  Feb 01 2018 [#permalink] Columbia
Off Campus with Alumni Interviewed on: Apr 13 2016 Final Decision: Interviewed

"CBS has a very interesting interview model. They do not require or even offer on campus interviews. Their model is about people doing interviews in the community and not trying to burden people with coming to NYC. I liked this approach. They match you with up to 6 alums within a certain distance of your area code and its up to you to choose and reach out to someone. I only got 4 alum matches as theres not many CBS folks in my area. I recommend doing proper LinkedIn and Google searches to pick the person you are most comfortable with and feel would be a good fit with depending on careers interests or other. I chose my interviewer based on their very interesting and strong career history which I felt could make them a great asset to me in the future. But pick based on your own criteria. Often, they may not respond so you may end up emailing two or three of them so don't get hung up on one person. The first alum I contacted responded. We met at his office and he was a very relaxed, easy going guy. Not as intimidating as his resume would suggest. We started off with one big question up front, sort of a why MBA/why now/why Columbia combo, that kicked things off. So have your story and the brand you want to communicate very clear in your head as the questions may not come as you expect. After this big intro question it was an extremely laid back conversational feel. We went off topic a couple times, but stayed within the general themes and never really dug into my resume, although I would be very prepared in the resume department. He ask me very bluntly what other programs I had applied to. Be prepared for this question and have a rational answer as to why you applied to each. Don't be afraid to say CBS is your top pick despite applying to those other schools. Overall the interview went great. Off campus interviews can be tricky as the alums can stray from the script and can ask whatever they want so you have to be a bit more prepared. Outside of the usual questions, I would know what brand and statement you want to get across to the interviewer. They must then submit a review survey back to CBS so ensure they take a positive take away from you as they may be submitting feedback days later."

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Debrief posted on  Jan 31 2018 [#permalink] Columbia
Off Campus with Alumni Interviewed on: Feb 11 2016 Final Decision: Interviewed

"I got my interview at Columbia at the very far end of ED applications. I was already preparing myself for a ding without interview. I am glad and feel lucky to have received the invite for interview. I have given the interview process a 4/5 star as I believe the policy of contacting 1 alumni at a time does limit your options and as these alumni are almost always busy, it becomes very difficult to schedule one. CBS' rolling admission does put a pressure on you to get your materials and itnerviews in as earliest as possible. My first interviewer was out of town and thus could not reply in time to my request for an interview. I was lucky that my second interviewer was very quick to respond back to my request for an interview. I scheduled my interview for 4 days later and the drive to the interviewer's office was 30 minutes long. I arrived at his office at 11 AM and he was very cordial and happy to interview me that day. We started off with the alumnus providing his background, his current and past work experiences and then we moved onto the actual interview. I was told at the beginning that the interviewer already had some questions prepared to ask me as I had already sent my resume with the interview request. It started with some very particular questions and he wanted to understand why I chose a particular path be it my education or my professional experience. After I was also asked the reasons for opting for my field of studies whether it was my UG or Master's studies or my first job or extracurriculars I involved myself with. I was asked the standard why MBA, why CBS, Why NYC, Plan B, what other schools did you apply to and why, why did you apply to CBS in ED round when you applied to other schools etc (all the standard questions that you will get from clear admit's or mbamission's interview guides). The interview lasted 45 minutes and was very conversational. I was taken aback when I was asked about my plan B if I am not able to lets say get courses of my liking or internship/full time offer in the industry of my choice. At the end of the interview, I was asked to talk about any questions I might have for the interviewer. 1 lesson I learnt was to tackle every question in a way that will lead you to talk about how/what are you going to bring to CBS' community. Once you do that convincingly, interview should be easy to navigate. Make sure to have a plan B type of answer prepared so that you can show that you have done your due diligence. The interview feedback was submitted the very same evening Final Result: Ding after interview. Probably I was not able to tackle the Plan B type of questions convincingly or 'diversity' of the class of 2018 played a role, I wouldnt know for sure. Anything different for next time: Probably go over the interview guides by stacy blackman and clearadmit in detail to cover all the possible interview questions and their possible answers."

ENGRTOMBA2018 from India GMAT 750; Aerospace and Defense
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