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INSEAD evaluation (how can I address leaving IB early?)

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Joined: 15 Aug 2011
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INSEAD evaluation (how can I address leaving IB early?) [#permalink]

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New post 11 Jul 2014, 10:49
I’m looking to apply for INSEAD for September 2015 intake, my profile is as follows. I will also be hiring an admission consultant in order to maximize my chances and address the weaknesses in my application, how much does that cost for one application to INSEAD (only school I’m interested in).
- 29-year old white male
- Dual citizen (Austrian and Danish)
- B.Sc. in Economics from University of Indiana; GPA: 3.9/4.0
- 4-year varsity athlete at university and member of U-22 national team for relatively „small“ sport during university
- Besides sports (purely as a hobby) no extra-curricular activities after university due to workload
- CFA charter holder
- GMAT: >700 (will take GMAT in two weeks, will a 750 make a large difference compared to a 750, if yes, I might push harder)
- Languages: Native in German and Danish, fluent in English, basic in Spanish (aiming to be fluent at the start of INSEAD, see below)
- Work experience (oldest first):
o Various internships in Chicago, New York and London
o 2 years in middle-market investment banking in London as analyst (tier-2 firm), top-ranked the first year
o 3 years in middle-market private equity in Frankfurt (tier-2 firm), promoted after 2 years from associate to VP
- Motivation:
o Want to move into a general management role at a corporate
- Weaknesses:
o Will leave private equity firm in August in order to travel the world for one year and learn Spanish fluently, no other activities planned besides enjoying life (I’ve never had opportunity to travel for a prolonged period of time due to commitment to sports)
o Left investment banking 6 month early in order to join a private equity fundraising company, was a big mistake, luckily I was able to get into private equity after 6 months

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mbaMission Admissions Consultant
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Re: INSEAD evaluation (how can I address leaving IB early?) [#permalink]

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New post 12 Jul 2014, 19:59
Hi Olaf,

Thanks for your post. Good luck on that upcoming GMAT! The GMAT can certainly make an impact one way or another. I'm not sure if there was a typo when asking about scores as you mentioned a 750 vs a 750? But certainly a 750 is rare and would help you stand out for sure! Not sure if you've score that on a practice test or close to it? In any case best wishes for that test and keep us posted on how it goes!

It sounds like INSEAD could be a good fit for you given your background and interest in international exposure. You've got the multiple language fluency which is important; you've got excellent grades; and solid/extensive work experience. You're just a touch over the average # of years of work experience for incoming INSEAD students but within range. Your involvement in and dedication to sports over the years shows dedication and drive and helps to show a personal passion/interest in addition to your professional experiences. The CFA and your international experiences will also help.

I don't know as much about what you feel your main accomplishments were, both professional and personal, and what leadership experiences you may be able to describe. I also don't know if you have any community experiences to cite. But overall it sounds like you have a good start for a solid INSEAD profile, and it may come down to how well you can tell your story and showcase who you are and what you'd contribute to the program. It's also important that you do make a compelling case for WHY you need this MBA, so see if you can dig deeper into your goals and make sure it's clear that you do indeed NEED this degree and why, and how you'll use it in both the short and long term.

Since you are only interested in INSEAD, your passion for their program will hopefully come through and that is a 'plus' as well. Be sure you really illustrate how well you know the school and how you know that INSEAD is a great fit for you and why. Make it personal--- why is their school the best one for YOU (i.e. reasons that aren't generic). If you haven't already, visit if possible; sit in on classes if possible; get in touch with current students and alum (the admissions office will usually put you in touch if needed); read blogs; read the website etc.

In terms of dealing with mistakes, it's best to briefly address it (when needed/appropriate) and mention what you learned from it, what you'd do differently at this point in time, and focus more on what you've done since then and your certainty that this is the right path for you.

In terms of taking a year to travel now, that could be a bit of a challenge to overcome, that is true. It's a bit more risky in that it depends upon the admissions committee and how they review it and it could be more subjective... some may definitely appreciate that world travel can be a hugely educational experience, and focusing on the language study will help too. It's possible some will question why, or whether not having recent work experience would shift your perspective in the MBA class. Just trying to analyze it from all angles. I definitely know of many who go traveling for the summer before b-school; or even after acceptance :)... not sure how tied to August you are, but a personal decision to think about.

As for admissions consulting, we would be happy to assist you with your MBA application. We can help you brainstorm to dig deep and come up the key aspects of yourself you'd like to get across in your applications, and provide feedback on your essays, resume, and application; do interview prep and answer any questions you may have. Here's a link to info on all of our services.
The Complete Start to Finish package is our most popular option.

To get started, the best recommendation I'd give is to sign up for a free 30 minute consultation. This is a chance to speak one-on-one with one of our qualified admissions consultants and ask any questions you'd like during that time; dig deeper into a profile review; and really focus your time as you prefer for the 30 min. You can register at

Let us know what other q's you have and good luck! INSEAD is a great program (and I personally enjoyed studying for the MBA in Europe and all of the global connections it led to).

Jen Kedrowski

mbaMission Insiders Guides:
Free Consultation:


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