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HBS R2 Admit - Class of 2022

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HBS R2 Admit - Class of 2022  [#permalink]

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New post Updated on: 24 May 2020, 20:04
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Hi everyone! I was accepted from R2 to HBS. I’ve done a lot of reflecting both during the application process and after my admittance, and I’m happy to share some insights from my application experience.

GMAT Prep

I spent waaaay too much time and money on what ended up being ineffective study methods (~2 years on and off and several thousand dollars). I tried most of the name brand programs, including in-person classes, private tutoring, and online programs. I ended up taking the GMAT four times: 1st time – 620; 2nd time – 680; 3rd time – 670; 4th time (literally two days before HBS’ R2 app was due) – 710.

In the end, I could have severely cut my time and money investment down by using MathRevolution.com from the start. My verbal score was always in the 40-43 range, but my quant struggled for a long time to get above the low 40s. The strategies I learned from MathRevolution.com were extremely effective, and the types of problems shown in the program were almost exactly the same types that showed up on test day. I would highly recommend Math Revolution to anyone struggling with quant.

Figuring Out a Narrative

This was an area that I feel I excelled in. I spent a lot of time mapping out inflection points in my childhood, high school years, college years, and in each of my professional roles. I then made an exhaustive list of narratives that connected the inflection points with my post-MBA short-term and long-term goals. Next, I filtered the list based on which narratives I felt would be the easiest to understand by an adcom. Finally, I ran the remaining narratives by my closest friends and family, and I made the final cut based on their reactions. (For the narrative that I ended up choosing, my family members all basically said, “Duh, that makes perfect sense.”) I really feel that nailing my narrative down and making sure that it was consistent all throughout the application process was key.

Building Confidence

I came into the application process being pretty self-aware of my chances. I didn’t come from a top undergrad program, I’m not an ethnic URM, my GMAT was below the average for my target schools, etc. In fact, I nearly convinced myself several times not to apply because I thought that I wouldn’t be competitive enough. After doing a thorough, no-BS self-evaluation, I identified a list of things about myself that I felt were unique and exemplary, and I focused on bringing those out as much as possible in my applications.

Being Strategic

I feel that the schools (at least the ones I applied to) make it clear what they’re looking for. HBS, for example, has three qualities that they specifically seek out. I made sure that my essays, resume, short answers, and interview responses all highlighted those qualities. I was also quite strategic with my recommendations. I reached out to my recommenders (my current supervisor and former direct supervisor) for their blessing about a month before my first application deadline. Then, I put together “recommendation packages” for each recommender with projects that I had completed, results of those projects, and submission deadlines to make it as easy as possible for them. The projects that I included for my recommenders were ones that displayed key qualities that weren’t as apparent in other parts of my application. Long before I reached out to my recommenders, though, I had built strong relationships with them to ensure their support come MBA application time.

Final Piece of Advice

If there was one thing that I would change about my MBA application approach (other than my GMAT study methods), it would be the stupid amount of time I spent on message boards and live feeds after I submitted my applications, scouring for the latest admissions rumors. Admittedly, it was pretty horrible for my mental health. My advice for future applicants would be to disconnect as much as possible from the application process in between application submissions and admissions decisions. That way, even if you get waitlisted, you will be in the right frame of mind to put your best effort into your waitlist materials if that time comes.

I hope you found this debrief useful, and best of luck to future applicants!

Originally posted by Synchrony on 17 May 2020, 15:16.
Last edited by Synchrony on 24 May 2020, 20:04, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: HBS R2 Admit - Class of 2022  [#permalink]

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New post 18 May 2020, 09:29
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WOW! Congratulations. That's insane you got your GMAT score 2 days before the deadline. I could see how schools may frown upon people who take the GMAT just shortly before the admissions deadline (indicating unpreparedness) or adcoms frowning upon retakes - you have proven it does not really matter or perhaps does not matter enough!

P.S. Awesome job on the Quant improvement too!
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Re: HBS R2 Admit - Class of 2022  [#permalink]

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New post Updated on: 18 May 2020, 12:31
1
Synchrony wrote:
Hi everyone! I was accepted from R2 to HBS. I’ve done a lot of reflecting both during the application process and after my admittance, and I’m happy to share some insights from my application experience.

GMAT Prep

I spent waaaay too much time and money on what ended up being ineffective study methods (~2 years on and off and several thousand dollars). I tried most of the name brand programs, including in-person classes, private tutoring, and online programs. I ended up taking the GMAT four times: 1st time – 620; 2nd time – 680; 3rd time – 670; 4th time (literally two days before HBS’ R2 app was due) – 710.

In the end, I could have severely cut my time and money investment down by using MathRevolution.com from the start. My verbal score was always in the 40-43 range, but my quant struggled for a long time to get above the low 40s. The strategies I learned from MathRevolution.com were extremely effective, and the types of problems shown in the program were almost exactly the same types that showed up on test day. I would highly recommend Math Revolution to anyone struggling with quant.

Figuring Out a Narrative

This was an area that I feel I excelled in. I spent a lot of time mapping out inflection points in my childhood, high school years, college years, and in each of my professional roles. I then made an exhaustive list of narratives that connected the inflection points with my post-MBA short-term and long-term goals. Next, I filtered the list based on which narratives I felt would be the easiest to understand by an adcom. Finally, I ran the remaining narratives by my closest friends and family, and I made the final cut based on their reactions. (For the narrative that I ended up choosing, my family members all basically said, “Duh, that makes perfect sense.”) I really feel that nailing my narrative down and making sure that it was consistent all throughout the application process was key.

Building Confidence

I came into the application process being pretty self-aware of my chances. I didn’t come from a top undergrad program, I’m not an ethnic URM, my GMAT was below the average for my target schools, etc. In fact, I nearly convinced myself several times not to apply because I thought that I wouldn’t be competitive enough. After doing a thorough, no-BS self-evaluation, I identified a list of things about myself that I felt were unique and exemplary, and I focused on bringing those out as much as possible in my applications.

Being Strategic

I feel that the schools (at least the ones I applied to) make it clear what they’re looking for. HBS, for example, has three qualities that they specifically seek out. I made sure that my essays, resume, short answers, and interview responses all highlighted those qualities. I was also quite strategic with my recommendations. I reached out to my recommenders for their blessing about a month before my first application deadline. Then, I put together “recommendation packages” for each recommender with projects that I had completed, results of those projects, and submission deadlines to make it as easy as possible for them. The projects that I included for my recommenders were ones that displayed key qualities that weren’t as apparent in other parts of my application. Long before I reached out to my recommenders, though, I had built strong relationships with them to ensure their support come MBA application time.

Final Piece of Advice

If there is one thing that I would change about my MBA application approach (other than my GMAT study methods), it would be the stupid amount of time I spent on message boards and live feeds after I submitted my applications, scouring for the latest admissions rumors. Admittedly, it was pretty horrible for my mental health. My advice for future applicants would be to disconnect as much as possible from the application process in between application submissions and admissions decisions. That way, even if you get waitlisted, you will be in the right frame of mind to put your best effort into your waitlist materials if that time comes.

I hope you found this debrief useful, and best of luck to future applicants!


Hi Congratulations on your admit!
I think that's some journey you had. I find your advice of disconnecting post submition to be very prudent. I have experienced the mental stress first hand and wholeheartedly second that point.

Posted from my mobile device

Originally posted by elPatron434 on 18 May 2020, 09:34.
Last edited by elPatron434 on 18 May 2020, 12:31, edited 1 time in total.
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HBS R2 Admit - Class of 2022  [#permalink]

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New post 18 May 2020, 12:25
bb wrote:
WOW! Congratulations. That's insane you got your GMAT score 2 days before the deadline. I could see how schools may frown upon people who take the GMAT just shortly before the admissions deadline (indicating unpreparedness) or adcoms frowning upon retakes - you have proven it does not really matter or perhaps does not matter enough!

P.S. Awesome job on the Quant improvement too!
Thank you!

Touching on retakes a bit — based on what I've heard from adcoms, applying with a score below the school's average/median and no retakes tends to be frowned upon. Even if you get the exact same score a second time, they want to see that you tried to improve.
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Re: HBS R2 Admit - Class of 2022  [#permalink]

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New post 24 Jun 2020, 11:29
Hi! Congratulations for your admit! You must be feeling on the top of the world currently.

You mention this in your post -
Quote:
HBS, for example, has three qualities that they specifically seek out


What exactly are these three qualities? Curious. :-)
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Re: HBS R2 Admit - Class of 2022  [#permalink]

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New post 24 Jun 2020, 11:57
rahulbiitk wrote:
Hi! Congratulations for your admit! You must be feeling on the top of the world currently.

You mention this in your post -
Quote:
HBS, for example, has three qualities that they specifically seek out


What exactly are these three qualities? Curious. :-)

Thank you! The three qualities can be found here.
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Re: HBS R2 Admit - Class of 2022  [#permalink]

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New post 26 Jun 2020, 18:17
Congrats buddy, on the buzzer beater GMAT, just two days before due date. lol
I think we all that problem of doubting ourselfs. Goodluck to you mate! would love to have a chat with you
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Re: HBS R2 Admit - Class of 2022  [#permalink]

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New post 07 Jul 2020, 20:05
hero_with_1000_faces wrote:
Congrats buddy, on the buzzer beater GMAT, just two days before due date. lol
I think we all that problem of doubting ourselfs. Goodluck to you mate! would love to have a chat with you

Thanks! I'm happy to chat with whomever has questions (or just wants a good pep talk :) ).
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Re: HBS R2 Admit - Class of 2022   [#permalink] 07 Jul 2020, 20:05

HBS R2 Admit - Class of 2022

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