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Not optimistic after using Consultant - realistic school choices?

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GPA: 3.11
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Not optimistic after using Consultant - realistic school choices? [#permalink]

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New post 23 Oct 2017, 14:51
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Hi,

I signed up for a 3 school package from a highly-rated admissions consulting group that has ended in unexpected results. I've been dinged from 2 out of my 3 R1 schools without an interview because of my GPA (feedback from schools). The schools I used the consultant for were schools ranked 6-10 and were schools that I was told I have a decent shot at given my stats. I was quite clear that I would like to leverage a consultant for schools that I have a good chance at and not at reach schools. However, after two dings without interviews because of a low GPA, I am starting to worry about A: my chances of getting into a top 13ish program and B: was my money not spent well and the schools were out out reach? Although I am aware consultants can't promise admissions to a school, otherwise work experience, GMAT and GPA would be rendered obsolete, and that the admissions process is a crapshoot, I will admit that I have been caught off-guard by the dings without interviews for schools that I had a "decent" shots at. I have two awesome references that are very personalized and I feel as though my ECs are decent, maybe average or slightly below avg. I am sad that I didn't even get the chance to mess up the interviews on my own :-).

In all seriousness, I am willing to try the admission consultant process again for a single R2 school, in case the approach for my R1 applications was part of the problem. I am hoping to get feedback on what Top 13ish schools are realistic for me, if any. Due to my age, I would very much like to matriculate Fall 2018.

I have provided an overview of my background and work experience below:

I am a 30 year old, white male who has a 3.11 combined GPA (will talk more about this in a little) and a GMAT score of 740 (Q50, V40, IR 7, AWA 5). Grew up in the South Carolina and attended a top 75 liberal arts college, always listed as a top 3 school in SC. In hindsight, I probably should have taken a year off before going to school because I was immature and wasn't ready to tackle the challenge of college. I graduated with 2.87 GPA in Business Economics.

After graduation, during the height of the recession, I landed a job at a tech startup in Jacksonville, FL focused on investment reporting. Because I was one of the first 50 employees, I received stock. Within 6 months of starting, I was promoted to a role that had two reports and was responsible of developing a process to integrate new clients on to our platform. After a tenure of 2 years, the company was purchased by a tech giant in San Francisco and I had a decision to make: exercise my stocks or reinvest in the larger company. In the end, I decided to exercise my stock to fund a second bachelors degree in Applied Mathematics.

At the age of 24, I found myself back in the classroom at University of South Carolina, hard to say no to in-state tuition, for a second degree that would only take me 2 years to complete; my credits transferred from my first degree. During my degree, I didn't have much time for ECs because I was taking a full load every semester and during the summer. I ended up graduating Cum Laude with a 3.5 GPA in December of 2013. By January 12, 2014 I had a job offer at Home Depot's HQ in Atlanta, GA working in Supply Chain Finance.

During my time at THD, I was promoted from analyst to sr. analyst, taught myself vba, sql and python, won multiple awards, including an executive award for combining data from numerous subsidiaries, and lead my teams philanthropic efforts to a platinum, highest, award from the CFO. I loved my time at Home Depot but the company was a well oiled machine and when a former colleague reached out to me regarding a position at Newell Rubbermaid (now Newell Brands) that would allow me to own projects for an upcoming merger, I couldn't say no.

My time at Newell has not been the easiest because the sell from the former colleague didn't go as planned; however, in the end, everything has worked out. I have been promoted since joining a year and half ago, actually turned down promotions along the way, and am currently leading a team working on supply chain optimization. The team I lead owns the ideation and business case creation portion of the process as well as any financial tracking of synergies. I have also assisted in organizational designs and owned a portion of a ZBB (zero based budgeting) projects. I truly enjoy my job but I know there is room for me to improve in strategic approach and leadership. I am pursuing an MBA to help me transition into consulting which expose me to a wide variety of strategies and industries. In addition, an MBA will provide me with a holistic view of a business - as I have been mostly focused on supply chain for most of my career - but more importantly an MBA will strengthen my leadership skills, skills I will need for my long-term goal of rolling back into a consumer focused company, such as Home Depot or Newell, as a leader within a strategy group.


Look forward to hearing your thoughts and hopefully working together.


Best,

J

Edit: added clarity to a statement made
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Last edited by Bowtye on 24 Oct 2017, 05:59, edited 3 times in total.

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Re: Not optimistic after using Consultant - realistic school choices? [#permalink]

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New post 23 Oct 2017, 15:43
Wofford09 wrote:
Hi,

I signed up for a 3 school package from a highly-rated admissions consulting group with disappointing results. I've been dinged from 2 out of my 3 R1 schools without an interview because of my GPA (feedback from schools). The schools I used my consultant for are schools ranked in the range from 6-10 and schools that I was not only excited about but were also told I have a decent shot at given my stats (even with a low GPA) and my work experience. However, after two dings without interviews because of a low GPA, I am starting to worry about A: my chances of getting into a top 13ish program and B: how well my money was spent. Although I am aware consultants can't promise admissions to a school, otherwise work experience, GMAT and GPA would be rendered obsolete, and that the admissions process is a crap shoot, I will admit that I have been caught off-guard by the dings without interviews for schools that I had a "decent" shots at. I have two awesome references and feel as though my ECs are decent, maybe average or slightly below avg, and am sad that I didn't even get the chance to mess up the interviews on my own :-) .

In all seriousness, I am willing to try the admission consultant process again for a single R2 school, in case the approach of R1 applications is part of the problem, but I was hoping to get feedback on what Top 13ish schools are realistic for me, if any. Due to my age, I would very much like to matriculate Fall 2018.

I have provided an overview of my background and work experience below:

I am a 30 year old, white male who has a 3.11 combined GPA (will talk more about this in a little) and a GMAT score of 740 (Q50, V40, IR 7, AWA 5). Grew up in the South Carolina and attended a top 75 liberal arts college, always listed as a top 3 school in SC. In hindsight, I probably should have taken a year off before going to school because I was immature and wasn't ready to tackle the challenge of college. I graduated with 2.87 GPA in Business Economics.

After graduation, during the height of the recession, I landed a job at a tech startup in Jacksonville, FL focused on investment reporting. Because I was one of the first 50 employees, I received stock. Within 6 months of starting, I was promoted to a role that had two reports and was responsible of developing a process to integrate new clients on to our platform. After a tenure of 2 years, the company was purchased by a tech giant in San Francisco and I had a decision to make: exercise my stocks or reinvest in the larger company. In the end, I decided to exercise my stock to fund a second bachelors degree in Applied Mathematics.

At the age of 24, I found myself back in the classroom at University of South Carolina, hard to say no to in-state tuition, for a second degree that would only take me 2 years to complete; my credits transferred from my first degree. During my degree, I didn't have much time for ECs because I was taking a full load every semester and during the summer. I ended up graduating Cum Laude with a 3.5 GPA in December of 2013. By January 12, 2014 I had a job offer at Home Depot's HQ in Atlanta, GA working in Supply Chain Finance.

During my time at THD, I was promoted from analyst to sr. analyst, taught myself vba, sql and python, won multiple awards, including an executive award for combining data from numerous subsidiaries, and lead my teams philanthropic efforts to a platinum, highest, award from the CFO. I loved my time at Home Depot but the company was a well oiled machine and when a former colleague reached out to me regarding a position at Newell Rubbermaid (now Newell Brands) that would allow me to own projects for an upcoming merger, I couldn't say no.

My time at Newell has not been the easiest because the sell from the former colleague didn't go as planned; however, in the end, everything has worked out. I have been promoted since joining a year and half ago, actually turned down promotions along the way, and am currently leading a team working on supply chain optimization. The team I lead owns the ideation and business case creation portion of the process as well as any financial tracking of synergies. I have also assisted in organizational designs and owned a portion of a ZBB (zero based budgeting) projects. I truly enjoy my job but I know there is room for me to improve in strategic approach and leadership. I am pursuing an MBA to help me transition into consulting which expose me to a wide variety of strategies and industries. In addition, an MBA will provide me with a holistic view of a business - as I have been mostly focused on supply chain for most of my career - but more importantly an MBA will strengthen my leadership skills, skills I will need for my long-term goal of rolling back into a consumer focused company, such as Home Depot or Newell, as a leader within a strategy group.


Look forward to hearing your thoughts and hopefully working together.


Best,

J

Edit: added clarity to a statement made



Hi. I have a similar GMAT and GPA score, can you please if possible mention which schools dinged you for the low GPA.

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Re: Not optimistic after using Consultant - realistic school choices? [#permalink]

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New post 23 Oct 2017, 19:01
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I think you may have aimed too high with two Top 10 schools. While your GMAT is strong, your GPA is unusually low, and you don't really have work experience in any "sexy" companies that top schools like. Also, the fact that both schools cited your GPA as a factor is concerning, as this is something that could have been identified quite early in the process by a sensible consultant as insurmountable based on your demographics.

Is there any reason why you didn't focus on the Top 17 - 30, eg. a school like Georgia Tech? My understanding of the admissions process is that you have to consider your demographic pool and have a clear-eyed view of where you fit in it. A 30 year old male with a 2.8 undergrad GPA without "blue chip" (I hate that term, but it works here) experience, will have a really hard time getting into a Top 10 - For most people getting into the Top 10 is a crapshoot, but it is even more so for people with low GPAs unless there is something else they are bringing to the table that is both unique and desireable. I'd be curious to know what consulting firm you used because in my opinion they did not advise you well. Instead of signing up for another consultant, I suggest just doing the comprehensive profile review or ding analysis at essaysnark.com . After that you can come up with a plan on next steps.

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Re: Not optimistic after using Consultant - realistic school choices? [#permalink]

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New post 24 Oct 2017, 00:13
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Must say Aaliyah537 has summed up your issues rather very well. I have worked with clients mostly Indian IT males, an extremely high presence in US MBA programs, and therefore the most looked over single group to maintain diversity. The only way we have still maintained success rates of 97% in the top 25 (USNews.com rankings) is by keeping at least two safe schools, and keeping the application targets dynamic.

Strengthen your resume - The importance of Resumes in the application process can't be overemphasized. After your GMAT scores, the achievements and language of your resume will single-handedly make/break your application chances. Your GPA is indeed an important factor, but with a high GMAT (read predictability of academic performance in your MBA course), and good accomplishments at work - easily extrapolated for future work, you will be considered "employable" by the firms which visit. Good work on your profile by an admissions consultant can definitely make a difference.

On the other hand, if you think your resume already showcases your accomplishments in the absolute best manner possible, you should consider including some safe schools, and go to 15-25 ranks for now (Once you have a foothold, you can also go for a few better ones in the last rounds)


Bowtye wrote:
Hi,

I signed up for a 3 school package from a highly-rated admissions consulting group that has ended in unexpected results. I've been dinged from 2 out of my 3 R1 schools without an interview because of my GPA (feedback from schools). The schools I used the consultant for were schools ranked 6-10 and were schools that I was told I have a decent shot at given my stats. I was quite clear that I would like to leverage a consultant for schools that I have a good chance at and not at reach schools. However, after two dings without interviews because of a low GPA, I am starting to worry about A: my chances of getting into a top 13ish program and B: was my money not spent well and the schools were out out reach? Although I am aware consultants can't promise admissions to a school, otherwise work experience, GMAT and GPA would be rendered obsolete, and that the admissions process is a crap shoot, I will admit that I have been caught off-guard by the dings without interviews for schools that I had a "decent" shots at. I have two awesome references that are very personalized and I feel as though my ECs are decent, maybe average or slightly below avg. Ivam sad that I didn't even get the chance to mess up the interviews on my own :-).

In all seriousness, I am willing to try the admission consultant process again for a single R2 school, in case the approach for my R1 applications was part of the problem. I am hoping to get feedback on what Top 13ish schools are realistic for me, if any. Due to my age, I would very much like to matriculate Fall 2018.

I have provided an overview of my background and work experience below:

I am a 30 year old, white male who has a 3.11 combined GPA (will talk more about this in a little) and a GMAT score of 740 (Q50, V40, IR 7, AWA 5). Grew up in the South Carolina and attended a top 75 liberal arts college, always listed as a top 3 school in SC. In hindsight, I probably should have taken a year off before going to school because I was immature and wasn't ready to tackle the challenge of college. I graduated with 2.87 GPA in Business Economics.

After graduation, during the height of the recession, I landed a job at a tech startup in Jacksonville, FL focused on investment reporting. Because I was one of the first 50 employees, I received stock. Within 6 months of starting, I was promoted to a role that had two reports and was responsible of developing a process to integrate new clients on to our platform. After a tenure of 2 years, the company was purchased by a tech giant in San Francisco and I had a decision to make: exercise my stocks or reinvest in the larger company. In the end, I decided to exercise my stock to fund a second bachelors degree in Applied Mathematics.

At the age of 24, I found myself back in the classroom at University of South Carolina, hard to say no to in-state tuition, for a second degree that would only take me 2 years to complete; my credits transferred from my first degree. During my degree, I didn't have much time for ECs because I was taking a full load every semester and during the summer. I ended up graduating Cum Laude with a 3.5 GPA in December of 2013. By January 12, 2014 I had a job offer at Home Depot's HQ in Atlanta, GA working in Supply Chain Finance.

During my time at THD, I was promoted from analyst to sr. analyst, taught myself vba, sql and python, won multiple awards, including an executive award for combining data from numerous subsidiaries, and lead my teams philanthropic efforts to a platinum, highest, award from the CFO. I loved my time at Home Depot but the company was a well oiled machine and when a former colleague reached out to me regarding a position at Newell Rubbermaid (now Newell Brands) that would allow me to own projects for an upcoming merger, I couldn't say no.

My time at Newell has not been the easiest because the sell from the former colleague didn't go as planned; however, in the end, everything has worked out. I have been promoted since joining a year and half ago, actually turned down promotions along the way, and am currently leading a team working on supply chain optimization. The team I lead owns the ideation and business case creation portion of the process as well as any financial tracking of synergies. I have also assisted in organizational designs and owned a portion of a ZBB (zero based budgeting) projects. I truly enjoy my job but I know there is room for me to improve in strategic approach and leadership. I am pursuing an MBA to help me transition into consulting which expose me to a wide variety of strategies and industries. In addition, an MBA will provide me with a holistic view of a business - as I have been mostly focused on supply chain for most of my career - but more importantly an MBA will strengthen my leadership skills, skills I will need for my long-term goal of rolling back into a consumer focused company, such as Home Depot or Newell, as a leader within a strategy group.


Look forward to hearing your thoughts and hopefully working together.


Best,

J

Edit: added clarity to a statement made

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Re: Not optimistic after using Consultant - realistic school choices? [#permalink]

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New post 24 Oct 2017, 01:19
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Sorry to hear about your experience. I feel consultant should have warned you and set your expectations (though it is always a tricky part since nobody ever wants to tell their customer they don’t believe in them). I still feel they should have given some feedback that would have hinted that your gpa and possibly WE were potential weaknesses.


Having said that, I hope you can leverage some of the value that the consultant added and look at the top 20 for the R2. You can apply to 5 schools - 3 within the Top 10-20 and 1 in top 30 and 1 top 10.

Sometimes apps are unpredictable. You have time on your side. However, lately people apply in about 5 schools per round so you shot a bit short by going only with 3.

BB.

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Re: Not optimistic after using Consultant - realistic school choices? [#permalink]

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New post 24 Oct 2017, 12:40
Aaliyah537 wrote:
I think you may have aimed too high with two Top 10 schools. While your GMAT is strong, your GPA is unusually low, and you don't really have work experience in any "sexy" companies that top schools like. Also, the fact that both schools cited your GPA as a factor is concerning, as this is something that could have been identified quite early in the process by a sensible consultant as insurmountable based on your demographics.

Is there any reason why you didn't focus on the Top 17 - 30, eg. a school like Georgia Tech? My understanding of the admissions process is that you have to consider your demographic pool and have a clear-eyed view of where you fit in it. A 30 year old male with a 2.8 undergrad GPA without "blue chip" (I hate that term, but it works here) experience, will have a really hard time getting into a Top 10 - For most people getting into the Top 10 is a crapshoot, but it is even more so for people with low GPAs unless there is something else they are bringing to the table that is both unique and desireable. I'd be curious to know what consulting firm you used because in my opinion they did not advise you well. Instead of signing up for another consultant, I suggest just doing the comprehensive profile review or ding analysis at essaysnark.com . After that you can come up with a plan on next steps.



Appreciate the response. Regarding WE, the opinions seem to be very polar on whether my WE is attractive or not. I may not have provided enough information in the overview above, but some consultants find supply chain strategy for two fortune 500 companies extremely attractive while others have not.

I was also hoping that my upward trend on the 2.9 and my 3.5 would be enough to catch an eye, but I don't think that will be case.

I appreciate the suggestion to use essaysnark.com and will definitely check that out.
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Gmat prep 1 600
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Re: Not optimistic after using Consultant - realistic school choices?   [#permalink] 24 Oct 2017, 12:40
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