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Personal MBA Coach Founder
User avatar
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Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
Affiliations: Wharton, MIT
Joined: 11 Sep 2010
Posts: 1643
Location: United States (NY)
Overall Client Admit Rate: 96%
Should You Apply During Round 3?  [#permalink]

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New post 13 Feb 2019, 10:02
FROM Personal MBA Coach: Should You Apply During Round 3?
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Now that nearly all round 2 deadlines have past for full-time MBA programs, you may be wondering if it is too late to join the class of 2021. Gaining admittance during round 3 can be a challenge. Given this, many candidates ask me if they should apply during round 3 or wait until next year.
If you are wrestling with this decision, I suggest you ask yourself a few questions, largely around WHY you did not submit your application during earlier rounds. The answers to these questions will be a major factor in determining whether you should apply during round 3 or begin to plan for round 1 apps in the fall.
Did extenuating circumstances prevent you from applying during earlier rounds? (Examples may include military commitments or significant personal or medical challenges.) If so, round 3 may be an option. If a candidate was unable to submit during earlier rounds due to circumstances outside of his control, he will not be penalized for waiting until round 3. However, keep in mind that with limited seats left the competition will still be fierce.
Do you have an extraordinary profile? Round 3 is the most difficult round, by far! To succeed, you should have a profile that is well above average in multiple ways. If you do not have a strong explanation for waiting, it is even more crucial that you have an application that will be hard to turn down with above average test scores, grades, professional experience and more! Schools have spaces for round 3 applicants, but the onus will be on you to convince them that you deserve a seat. If you just received a large promotion or sold your company, round 3 may be your friend.
Did you intend to apply during round 2 but did not finish in time? Were you concerned that your application was not yet strong enough to submit? If you answered yes to one or both of these questions, there is a strong chance I would recommend that you wait and plan on applying to business school this fall. Whatever it was that prevented you from completing your best application is not likely to have changed much in the last few months. Further, given the higher standard round 3 applicants are held to, being successful during round 3, particularly when you did not have a good reason for waiting, is unlikely. While we get applicants in during round 3 every year, unless you answered yes to one of my first two questions, I would spend the next few months enhancing your profile and getting a jump start on round 1 applications. It is not too early to begin and we are working with a lot of applicants already for the fall!
Unsure how to get started? Read my January MBA Kick-Start guide. There are many steps you can and should be taking now to ensure success next year!
Were you rejected during earlier rounds? In this case, I would advise you to either broaden your list CONSIDERABLY or wait another year. Applying to similar level or even slightly less competitive schools during round 3, after a rejection during round 1 and/or round 2 is not your best bet. Instead, follow our early planning tips and prepare to win over admissions committee members the second time around!
Founded by a Wharton and MIT graduate, regularly helps applicants navigate their applications each year. Our comprehensive support includes mock interviews with a team of former M7 interviewers and customized GMAT/GRE tutoring with tutors who scored in the 99th percentile.
has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 11 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at +1 617-645-2424 or email for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your MBA dreams a reality!
Sign up now and lock in rates before they increase this spring!
You may also like these other blog articles:
Planning Ahead For The GMAT/GRE
Expanding Your Network For Long-Term Success
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________
Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

Sign up for a free consultation!

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Personal MBA Coach Founder
User avatar
P
Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
Affiliations: Wharton, MIT
Joined: 11 Sep 2010
Posts: 1643
Location: United States (NY)
Overall Client Admit Rate: 96%
Is There Another Degree You Should Consider?  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Feb 2019, 13:02
FROM Personal MBA Coach: Is There Another Degree You Should Consider?
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While the MBA is the most commonly discussed master’s level degree offered at elite business schools, there are an increasing number of other degree options becoming available for those looking for an Ivy League business education.
In fact, 3 of the M7 schools now offer non-MBA master’s level degree programs. These degrees are in addition to the specialized, dual degree and Executive MBA programs available. If you look beyond the M7 schools, there are countless programs available, with more arising each day. For example, just last week NYU Stern announced a new Online Master of Science in Quantitative Management Program.
Below we have listed a selection of options currently available.
Non-MBA Degrees Offered at M7 Business Schools
MIT Sloan
Master of FinanceMaster of Business Analytics
Kellogg
MS in Management Studies
Columbia Business School
MS in Financial EconomicsMS in Marketing ScienceMS in Accounting and Fundamental AnalysisMS in Management Science and EngineeringMS in Business Analytics
Beyond The M7
Berkeley Haas
Master of Financial Engineering
Michigan Ross
Master of AccountingMaster of ManagementMaster of Supply Chain Management
Duke Fuqua
Master of Management Studies: Foundations of BusinessMaster of Management Studies: Duke Kunshan UniversityMaster of Quantitative Management: Business AnalyticsMaster of Quantitative Management: Health Analytics
NYU Stern
MS in AccountingMS in Business Analytics and Business ComputingMS in Quantitative FinanceMS in Global FinanceMS in Risk Management
UVA Darden
MS in Business Analytics
UCLA Anderson
Master of Financial EngineeringMaster of Science in Business Analytics
Carnegie Mellon Tepper
Master of Science in Business AnalyticsMaster of Science in Product ManagementMaster of Integrated Innovation for Products and ServicesMaster of Science in Computational Finance
So, what does the rise of such programs mean for MBA hopefuls?
These degrees are great options suitable for MBA hopefuls who are not quite ready for the academic rigor of an MBA program. There are many reasons for this including:
Weaker quantitative skillsLimited analytical courseworkLower GPA or testing scores
For such candidates, a master’s degree from a leading business school can be a great way to beef up your profile and analytical skills, preparing you to tackle an MBA program in the future or secure the career advancement you are looking for. While such a degree will not provide the same professional boost that an MBA program will, it will offer strong career opportunities, particularly for those looking for a highly specialized position.
These non-MBA master’s programs are also great early career options for those candidates who lack the professional experience necessary for an MBA. If you are looking to get ahead at work but have fewer than 3 years of professional experience, a shorter more entry level program could be a solid option. Upon completion of such a program, candidates can make career leaps positioning them for either long-term success or acceptance into a top MBA program.
Finally, such programs can be attractive for some international candidates. Many of our applicants from outside of the US seek out some of these programs because they may offer a 3 year OPT visa, easing any immigration concerns.
Each year, we help candidates advance their careers by pursuing a variety of degrees. Many will apply to some of these master’s programs and MBA programs before seeing which and how many they get into.
Founded by a Wharton and MIT graduate, regularly helps applicants navigate their applications each year. Our comprehensive support includes mock interviews with a team of former M7 interviewers and customized GMAT/GRE tutoring with tutors who scored in the 99th percentile.
has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 11 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at +1 617-645-2424 or email for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your MBA dreams a reality!
Sign up now and lock in rates before they increase this spring!
You may also like these other blog articles:
A Look At The 2019 FT MBA Rankings
5 Tips For Acing The MBA Interview
Want more MBA Application Tips?
Join our webinar: 8 Ways To Set Yourself Up For Application Success on 2/25 @8pm ET.
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________
Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

Sign up for a free consultation!

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Personal MBA Coach Founder
User avatar
P
Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
Affiliations: Wharton, MIT
Joined: 11 Sep 2010
Posts: 1643
Location: United States (NY)
Overall Client Admit Rate: 96%
Personal MBA Coach’s MBA Decision Making Guide  [#permalink]

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New post 27 Feb 2019, 11:02
FROM Personal MBA Coach: Personal MBA Coach’s MBA Decision Making Guide
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Considering an MBA? There is no shortage of decisions to be made. When should you go? Which program type is the best fit: Full-time? Part-Time? EMBA? Which schools should you apply to?
Naturally, there are no easy answers to any of these questions. Personal MBA Coach is here to help with our free MBA Decision Making Guide eBook, guiding you through 3 key decision making steps.
Below is a preview of what is included in this guide!
Decision 1: When Should I Apply?
If you are just beginning the process and wondering if now is the right time to apply, ask yourself if one or more of these statements rings true for you.
You already have 2-4 years of pre-MBA experience. You have reached a plateau at work. You are ready to switch careers. Your personal situation makes it a good time to become a student.
If so, this can be a good sign that you should pull the trigger sooner vs. later.
Decision 2: Which Program Type Is Best For Me?
Our guide covers 4 key MBA program options and helps you to assess which is right for you:
1) Full-Time MBA – Most common program for mid-career professionals and those who value an internship and/or are looking to switch careers. 2) Part-Time MBA – Perfect for those who are unable to take time off from work and do not require an internship.3) Executive MBA – Tailored towards experienced professionals with strong leadership experience. In some cases, however, applicants with 5-7 years of experience can go to certain EMBA programs.4) Early Action/Deferral Programs – An option for current college students looking to get a jump start on their MBA applications. An increasing number of schools are offering such a program.
Decision 3: Which Schools Should I Apply To?
Arguably the hardest decision you will make, our MBA Decision Making Guide dedicates 3 sections to this very question. Included are our thoughts on how to use (and how not to use) MBA rankings and our 6 tips for MBA program selection:
1) Begin with the statistics – but use them only as a guide!2) Go broad – our average client applies to at least 5 schools.3) Pay attention to culture.4) Look carefully at the curriculum and program – consider core curriculum, flexibility, international opportunities. 5) Explore areas of excellence – while all schools provide strong general management training, consider specific strengths and weaknesses. 6) Consider location – both in terms of on-campus life and ease of recruiting.
Get more details on each of these crucial MBA Application decisions by downloading our MBA Decision Making Guide today!
Need personal support? Founded by a Wharton and MIT graduate, Personal MBA Coach regularly helps applicants navigate their applications each year. Our comprehensive support includes mock interviews with a team of former M7 interviewers and customized GMAT/GRE tutoring with tutors who scored in the 99th percentile.
has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 11 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at +1 617-645-2424 or email for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your MBA dreams a reality!
Sign up now and lock in rates before they increase this spring!
You may also like these other blog articles:
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________
Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

Sign up for a free consultation!

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Personal MBA Coach Founder
User avatar
P
Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
Affiliations: Wharton, MIT
Joined: 11 Sep 2010
Posts: 1643
Location: United States (NY)
Overall Client Admit Rate: 96%
5 Reasons Why You Might Have Been Rejected From Your Dream School  [#permalink]

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New post 06 Mar 2019, 10:02
FROM Personal MBA Coach: 5 Reasons Why You Might Have Been Rejected From Your Dream School
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Were you rejected from your dream business school this year? After getting over the initial disappointment, you likely turned your attention to finding out what went wrong. While there are countless reasons for a rejection (this is why we created our ding report service) we will cover five of the most common reasons here to help you improve the next time around!
1) Problem: A lack of a compelling story.
Your MBA applications must stand out. The reader should come away understanding who you are, what you are passionate about and why. It should be clear how you are unique from your peers. If your application essays could have been written by any other candidate in a similar role, it will be difficult for you to stand out and be memorable. Successful candidates are memorable! But remember, this does not mean you need to save a 3rd world country. It all comes down to story and execution.
2) Problem: Application inconsistencies.
All aspects of your application should tie together. This includes your essays, resumes, extracurriculars and LORs. The strengths you share should match those cited in your recommendations. If your recommenders paint a picture of a detail-oriented candidate while your essays focus on your free-spirited nature, the reader will be confused. Similarly, your activities should align with your passions and expertise and your weaknesses should be consistent. If any two pieces of your application do not fit together this will raise a red flag about your intentions and sincerity.
3) Problem: Low GPA and/or testing score.
This one may be more obvious but no matter how amazing your applications are, if you do not have a competitive academic record and test score, you may not get into your dream school. While there are always outliers on either end, you must set reasonable expectations. As you begin to craft your second chance plan, think about whether there are classes you can take to demonstrate strong quantitative skills if you have a low GPA or how you can better prepare for the GMAT/GRE this time around. In addition, you may need to cast a wider net. My average client applies to 5+ schools including reach schools and some safer options.
4) Problem: An abundance of applicants with a similar profile.
For better or for worse, sometimes it will come down to numbers. While we use compelling personal stories to help our clients from overrepresented backgrounds stand out, diversity is important in the MBA classroom. You cannot fill an entire class with former MBB consultants. This “numbers game” is the second reason why I advise candidates to broaden their school lists.
5) Problem: Insufficient leadership experience.
It should come as no surprise that business schools look for leaders. While this is especially crucial for Executive MBA hopefuls, leadership is important for all MBA candidates. Luckily, there are many ways one can demonstrate leadership. Leading a team at work is an obvious one but taking on informal leadership within a team, stepping up outside of the office or mentoring junior team members are also great ways to demonstrate leadership. As you plan now for next year, think about how you can step up your leadership experience AND better articulate it in your essays.
Need personal support? Founded by a Wharton and MIT graduate, Personal MBA Coach regularly helps applicants navigate their applications each year. Our comprehensive support includes mock interviews with a team of former M7 interviewers and customized GMAT/GRE tutoring with tutors who scored in the 99th percentile.
has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 11 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at +1 617-645-2424 or email for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your MBA dreams a reality!
Sign up now and lock in rates before they increase this spring!
You may also like these other blog articles:
Is There Another Degree You Should Consider
Personal MBA Coach's MBA Decision Making Guide
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________
Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

Sign up for a free consultation!

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Personal MBA Coach Founder
User avatar
P
Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
Affiliations: Wharton, MIT
Joined: 11 Sep 2010
Posts: 1643
Location: United States (NY)
Overall Client Admit Rate: 96%
4 Tips For The MBA Resume  [#permalink]

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New post 13 Mar 2019, 09:02
FROM Personal MBA Coach: 4 Tips For The MBA Resume
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All MBA applications require a resume. You may be thinking, “No problem, I already have a resume.” Unfortunately, it is not that easy. A business school resume differs considerably from a professional one as each accomplishes a different goal. A professional resume shows potential employers that you have the specific skills and experiences they are looking for. You are selling your ability to do the job and should include industry specific terminology and jargon.
An MBA resume, on the other hand, should provide evidence that you have been successful and demonstrated leadership. You are selling your future potential.
After years of detailing your specific technical and industry expertise, you may be wondering HOW you should develop your MBA resume.
To guide you, we have outlined our four top tips, based on the mistakes that we see again and again.
Bonus, by focusing on your resume NOW, you will have one less thing to do when essay questions are released this spring and summer.
1. Do not outline your job description
Too often I read resume bullets that list a candidate’s tasks and responsibilities. This might be great for proving you can do a specific job, but it does nothing to differentiate you from other applicants. Anyone in your role could copy and paste these bullets from the job description. Admissions committee members do not need to know each detail of your job and what specifically it entails. Instead, think about your key accomplishments and highlights. What initiatives did you lead? What projects did you succeed in? How did you go above and beyond in your role? How did you excel, particularly in relation to your peers? Focus on the highlights. It is ok to leave out some things you worked on, especially if they would not sound impressive to someone outside of your company or industry.
2. Include results!
Learnings, takeaways and results are the most important items to include in your business school resume. This can and should include both personal growth over time and your impact on business performance. The more specific and measurable your results are, the better. Think of items such as increased performance 30% over previous year or drove $1M in new business through x, y, z.
3. Focus on leadership and transferable skills
While it may be crucial in your current role that you are an expert in SQL, this will be much less interesting to admissions committee members. Instead of detailing the technical skills you have amassed, focus on the transferable skills you have developed. Share how you have emerged as a leader. Leadership can come in multiple forms so even if you have not managed a team or a project (if you have, include this!) there are many ways to demonstrate leadership. Teamwork and communication are other important skills to include.
As you select professional strengths to share, prioritize those that are relevant to many industries, such as analysis, strategic thinking or research. These will be much more compelling in convincing the reader that you can excel in business school and beyond.
4. Show multiple aspects of your profile
Successful business school students are active outside of work: in their communities, in athletics, within organizations, etc. They have hobbies or specific language skills. They won awards or earned certifications. They got involved on their campuses or at work outside of the scope of their jobs. These details are important to show readers another aspect of your candidacy. However, keep in mind quality over quantity! A laundry list of activities or an organization you volunteered with once will not help (and including such might even hurt your creditability.)
Need personal support? Founded by a Wharton and MIT graduate, Personal MBA Coach regularly helps applicants navigate their applications each year. Our comprehensive support includes mock interviews with a team of former M7 interviewers and customized GMAT/GRE tutoring with tutors who scored in the 99th
percentile.
Personal MBA Coach has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 11 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at +1 617-645-2424 or email for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your MBA dreams a reality!
Sign up now and lock in rates before they increase this spring!
You may also like these other blog articles:
5 Reasons You May Have Been Rejected From Your Dream School
Is There Another Degree You Should Consider
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________
Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

Sign up for a free consultation!

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Personal MBA Coach Founder
User avatar
P
Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
Affiliations: Wharton, MIT
Joined: 11 Sep 2010
Posts: 1643
Location: United States (NY)
Overall Client Admit Rate: 96%
How To Get In When Reapplying  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Mar 2019, 08:02
FROM Personal MBA Coach: How To Get In When Reapplying
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Not to toot our own horn, but guiding reapplicants is one of our specialties. In fact, Personal MBA Coach has a near perfect record with reapplicants.
To increase your chances of success, keep these five guiding principles in mind.
1) Maintain your goals.
In most cases, your goals should remain the same. You want to demonstrate to the admissions committee that you are focused and consistent. Instead of developing new goals, evaluate how clearly you laid out your vision. Was it specific enough? Did you show how you will leave your mark? Did you demonstrate an understanding of the skills needed to achieve these goals?
While it may be necessary to adjust your goals, tread cautiously here. If life or work circumstances necessitate a change, carefully explain how your goals have evolved and the steps you have taken to get closer to them so that you do not appear indecisive.
2) Focus on school interaction and research.
Engaging with schools is important for all applicants and it is especially crucial for reapplicants. One of the reasons you may have been rejected the first time around could have been questionable interest in the target school (read our recent blog for other reasons you may have been rejected). Increased interaction with schools will not only combat any doubts surrounding your sincerity but also show admissions committee representatives that you are committed to and passionate about their programs.
Visit campuses (even if you already have), sit in on classes, meet with current students and attend MBA events. Naturally, there can be too much of a good thing so be careful to strike a balance between showing passion and being overbearing.
3) Look critically at your testing score.
While your test score is not the be all and end all, it IS important. This is particularly true of your quantitative score. If you were rejected, compare your score to the school’s average. Were you on the low end? Keep in mind that if you have an overrepresented profile, you will likely need an above average score. If your score was “borderline” think about developing an improved test preparation plan and retaking the test.
4) Strive for balanced essays.
With limited space to paint a picture of who you are and what makes you unique, it is important that you submit balanced essays. If you dwell too much on one aspect of your profile, you will undoubtedly shortchange another. Similarly, for many schools you also need to strike a balance between talking about you and talking about them. For instance, did you adequately discuss classes that you were interested in? Did you share the specific skills you hope to gain on campus? Developing balanced essays is one area that we work on extensively with all applicants, particularly reapplicants.
If you are unsure whether your balance was right, email us for a ding analysis.
5) Start far in advance.
All of these steps take time! If you were just rejected, do not put your applications on the back burner until the summer or fall. Instead, start now. Develop a calendar for courting your dream schools. Hire a GMAT/GRE tutor (if you are retaking the test). Look at where your essays were weak and think about how you can improve this time around. A rushed application will never be the strongest possible application so be sure to give yourself plenty of time to do it right!
Need personal support? Founded by a Wharton and MIT graduate, Personal MBA Coach regularly helps applicants navigate their applications each year. Our comprehensive support includes mock interviews with a team of former M7 interviewers and customized GMAT/GRE tutoring with tutors who scored in the 99th
percentile.
Personal MBA Coach has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 11 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at +1 617-645-2424 or email for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your MBA dreams a reality!
Sign up now and lock in rates before they increase this spring!
You may also like these other blog articles:
4 Tips For The MBA Resume
A Look At The 2019 FT MBA Rankings
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________
Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

Sign up for a free consultation!

Image
Personal MBA Coach Founder
User avatar
P
Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
Affiliations: Wharton, MIT
Joined: 11 Sep 2010
Posts: 1643
Location: United States (NY)
Overall Client Admit Rate: 96%
Personal MBA Coach’s Look At The 2020 US News and World Reports Best B  [#permalink]

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New post 27 Mar 2019, 11:02
FROM Personal MBA Coach: Personal MBA Coach’s Look At The 2020 US News and World Reports Best Business School Rankings
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With this month’s release of the 2020 US News and World Reports Best Business School Guide, MBA ranking are top of mind for all MBA hopefuls (and even many graduates). Personal MBA Coach would like to share our thoughts on the latest rankings.
Before I cover this year’s big changes, I would like to remind everyone of one of the most important things to keep in mind when evaluating rankings: Average ranking over time is much more important than year to year fluctuation.
So, what is the big news this year?
2020 Full-Time MBA Rankings:
I am proud to say that for the second time in three years, my alma mater, Wharton, secured the #1 position, reclaiming the spot from Booth. Further, unlike in the past few years, this top ranking was not shared between schools. Stanford was ranked #2, a decent improvement from its previous 4th place position. There was a three-way tie for third place between HBS, MIT Sloan and Chicago Booth. Next, Columbia, Kellogg and Berkeley Haas tied for 6th place. This was a good year for Yale SOM, which reclaimed its top 10 position with a #9 ranking. Finally, Duke Fuqua and Michigan Ross shared the #10 position.
Tuck fell out of the top 10 this year, with a #12 ranking, a position it shared with NYU Stern and UVA Darden. Johnson, Anderson, Tepper, Marshall, Kenan-Flagler and McCombs rounded out this year’s top 20.
One should not lose sleep over the fact that HBS is #3 this year, nor do we recommend that every client now apply to Wharton because of its top ranking. As we opened with, the changes over time are most important and these rankings vary from year-to-year and guide-to-guide.
The two 3-way ties in the top 10 demonstrate that it is increasingly difficult to distinguish between top MBA programs. Further, seeing schools shuffle around and move in and out of the top 10 confirms that there are a number of high-quality MBA options available with many applicants looking more broadly than just Harvard, Stanford and Wharton. My average client applies to five or more programs.
Beyond rankings, it is important to look at job placement. You can often land your dream job after graduating from a number of similar schools. Depending on your post-MBA goals, you may also want to pay more attention to some of the specialized rankings that exist. Just because a school is higher ranked overall does not mean that it will do a better job at preparing you for your next job, especially if you are not going for a more standard goal like consulting or banking.
Finally, with the lines blurring between top schools, available financing should be a key consideration. You may be able to secure more substantial funding from one school vs. other - last year my clients earned over $4.5M in scholarships. Often you will be better served selecting a school with a slightly lower ranking yet a more favorable financial package. Some M7 schools are very generous with scholarships and others are not.
As a reminder, do not overreact to these new rankings but do keep an open mind to expanding your MBA list.
Need personal support? Founded by a Wharton and MIT graduate, Personal MBA Coach regularly helps applicants navigate their applications each year. Our comprehensive support includes mock interviews with a team of former M7 interviewers and customized GMAT/GRE tutoring with tutors who scored in the 99th
percentile.
Personal MBA Coach has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 11 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at +1 617-645-2424 or email for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your MBA dreams a reality!
Sign up now and lock in rates before they increase this spring!
You may also like these other blog articles:
A Guide To MBA Rankings
A Look At The 2019 FT MBA Rankings
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________
Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

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Personal MBA Coach Founder
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Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
Affiliations: Wharton, MIT
Joined: 11 Sep 2010
Posts: 1643
Location: United States (NY)
Overall Client Admit Rate: 96%
Personal MBA Coach’s 5-Month Round 1 Success Plan  [#permalink]

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New post 03 Apr 2019, 14:02
FROM Personal MBA Coach: Personal MBA Coach’s 5-Month Round 1 Success Plan
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April is upon us! This means that the first round 1 deadline is likely just over five months away.
While the 2019-2020 MBA application deadlines and questions have not yet been announced (stay tuned for more details on this), last year, the first round 1 application deadline was in early September. If you are applying to Columbia Business School, they will start accepting applications within 4-6 weeks! We expect similarly timed deadlines this year.
Regardless of whether you followed our MBA Kick-Start Plan, it is time to kick your MBA application efforts into high gear.
To help you make the most of your time and avoid last minute cramming (which is never great for anyone), Personal MBA Coach has put together this 5-month plan.
Month 1: April
Schedule campus visits for your target schoolsThis is a great time to visit while classes are still in session
While visiting schools over the summer is ok, it is always best to see campuses in actionDevelop or solidify your GMAT/GRE preparation planMany of you may be well underway here (or even have already completed your testing)

Customize your resume for your MBA applications
Your MBA resume should differ from your professional oneWhile you may need to tweak your resume later this summer, we advise our clients to get most of their resume development work out of the way before essay questions are released

Fine-tune your career goalsPutting pencil to paper (so to speak) on your career goals now will save you time while developing your essays

Month 2: May
Narrow down your school listsYour final list may change (particularly if your GMAT/GRE score is not as you expected), but it is ideal to have an initial idea of your school list by May
Brainstorm essay topicsAs soon as the essay questions are released, get started on brainstorming and outlining!
Prepare your personal storyGive extra thought to your personal story and what makes you uniqueKeep this story in mind as you outline your essays

Begin to identify potential recommenders
Think about who will write the best letters (not just who is the most impressive on paper!) and begin putting out feelers
Continue GMAT/GRE preparation (if you can take the test this month, it is ideal)
Month 3: June
Draft your essaysEssay development should be getting the bulk of your attention this month
Finalize and prepare your recommenders
Nail down your recommenders and schedule time to prepare them appropriately
Take the GMAT/GREIf you have not already done so, try to get your testing completed by mid-summerThis will give you time to retake the test and not be too rushed

Network with current/former studentsSpeak with current students and alumni in your network to learn more about their programsThis will not only help you to confirm your interest, but it will also give you strong material for your applicationsSome schools specifically ask who you talked to, so do not forget this step

Month 4: July
Edit, edit, editEditing should be well underway at this point for most, if not all schoolsHowever, your essays will again take up the bulk of your time in July as you continue editing and developing essays for additional schools

Revisit school lists as neededBased on your score, you may want to critically evaluate and expand your school listMy average candidate applies to 5+ schools

Attend MBA eventsPersonal MBA Coach will be attending and presenting at multiple MBA Tour and Forté Foundation events in July and August. Email us for details
These are great opportunities to speak with admissions committee representatives from your target schools

Month 5: August
Put finishing touches on essaysBy August, you should be wrapping up your essays. We advise clients to lock their essays at least 2-3 weeks in advance of deadlinesLast minute changes are rarely for the better

Ensure LORs are ready to goFollow up with your recommenders and make sure they are on trackAsk your recommenders if they need any additional information from you

Work on short answer questionsAllocate enough time for short answer questionsOften these questions take longer than you might think and are an important part of the application

Proofread, proofread, proofreadALWAYS get someone unfamiliar with your applications to do a thorough reviewWe use a separate proofreader to do final application checks

By starting now and following this plan, you will be able to breathe easy come September!
Keep in mind that while it is great to have the full five months (or more) to prepare, we regularly work with clients who start later in the year and craft custom timelines accordingly.
Need personal support? Founded by a Wharton and MIT graduate, Personal MBA Coach regularly helps applicants navigate their applications each year. Our comprehensive support includes mock interviews with a team of former M7 interviewers and customized GMAT/GRE tutoring with tutors who scored in the 99th
percentile.
Personal MBA Coach has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 11 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at +1 617-645-2424 or email for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your MBA dreams a reality!
Sign up now and lock in rates before they increase this spring!
You may also like these other blog articles:
The 2020 Best Business School Rankings
How To Get In When Reapplying
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________
Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

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Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
Affiliations: Wharton, MIT
Joined: 11 Sep 2010
Posts: 1643
Location: United States (NY)
Overall Client Admit Rate: 96%
What To Expect From The 2019-2020 MBA Application Essays  [#permalink]

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New post 10 Apr 2019, 08:02
FROM Personal MBA Coach: What To Expect From The 2019-2020 MBA Application Essays
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Many MBA hopefuls who have already narrowed down their target school lists are anxiously awaiting the release of the 2019-2020 MBA application questions and deadlines.
While we cannot perfectly predict the future, our 11 years of MBA Admissions Consulting experience and careful analysis of past trends and recent campus announcements can help us to assess what MBA candidates should expect this
year!
To begin, let us take a look at which top MBA programs changed their MBA application essays in the past two years:
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Schools Less Likely To Change
Harvard Business School, Stanford GSB and Duke have not changed their essays in many years. Given this, we would be surprised to see changes from any of these schools this year. If these MBA programs are on your list, brainstorming or even outlining essays now is a fairly low risk endeavor.
Kellogg and Yale SOM are also on our “less likely to change” list.
Kellogg did not change its questions last year and with a new dean starting in August, I would not expect changes this year (though future changes could come).
Yale SOM has been consistent over the last few years and seems to have invested heavily in its unique essay question. SOM has also announced a new dean who will be starting in July, after the expected release of this year’s question(s). A change is less likely for Yale as well.
While not quite making the “less likely” list, we would be more surprised to see changes from London Business School and Chicago Booth. London Business School has not changed its essay in the past few years and Chicago Booth just made a major change last year after remaining consistent for the preceding few years.
Schools Likely To Make More Minor Changes
For other schools, minor tweaks and changes to some questions are more likely based on past behavior.
Wharton has left the first question unchanged for the past few years while making some changes to the second question last year. The year before, Wharton did not make any changes to its essay questions (though did revamp its LOR requirements).
The MIT Sloan cover letter has been a staple for a number of years. However, the school has altered the length in previous years and added additional requirements.
Schools Most Likely To Make Changes
There is a third group of schools which has historically been more prone to frequent changes. This list includes Columbia Business School, Michigan Ross, Dartmouth Tuck, NYU Stern and UVA Darden.
Columbia Business School changed two of its three questions and NYU Stern changed one of its questions last year. Michigan Ross, Dartmouth Tuck and UVA Darden made more detailed changes. All five schools have made changes in each of the past two years.
If these schools are on your list, I would suggest waiting for the release of this year’s questions before putting in major effort into your essays.
However, as I shared in last week’s 5-Month Round 1 Plan, there is plenty you can do now to kick-start your applications.
Keep in mind, the details shared above are predictions only! As soon as this year’s questions are released (which could begin as early as this month) Personal MBA Coach will let you know what has changed and share our advice on how to tackle each question. Join our weekly MBA Tips newsletter to be sure you do not miss anything!
Need personal support? Founded by a Wharton and MIT graduate, Personal MBA Coach regularly helps applicants navigate their applications each year. Our comprehensive support includes mock interviews with a team of former M7 interviewers and customized GMAT/GRE tutoring with tutors who scored in the 99th
percentile.
Personal MBA Coach has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 11 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at +1 617-645-2424 or email for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your MBA dreams a reality!
Sign up now and lock in rates before they increase this spring!
You may also like these other blog articles:
The 2020 Best Business School Rankings
How To Get In When Reapplying
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________
Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

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Personal MBA Coach Founder
User avatar
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Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
Affiliations: Wharton, MIT
Joined: 11 Sep 2010
Posts: 1643
Location: United States (NY)
Overall Client Admit Rate: 96%
Personal MBA Coach’s Guide To Post-MBA Goals  [#permalink]

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New post 17 Apr 2019, 10:02
FROM Personal MBA Coach: Personal MBA Coach’s Guide To Post-MBA Goals
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This month Personal MBA Coach’s blogs have focused on guiding MBA applicants who are ready to get started but are unsure where to begin! As part of our recent 5-month MBA plan, we advised all MBA hopefuls to fine tune and articulate their goals this April.
This is a great way to get a jump start on your MBA applications as you await the release of this year’s questions. (Wondering what to expect this year? Do not miss our recent blog: What To Expect From The 2019 MBA Applications).
With a few exceptions, articulating your post-MBA goals is a crucial part of the application process. Most business schools want to know how you will make the world better when you leave their campuses and what your unique mark will be.
As you begin to reflect upon and articulate your goals, consider these six key pieces of advice.
1) Be decisive.
While no one will hold you to what you write in your business school essays, you should generally be decisive when discussing your career goals. Pick a set of goals and run with them. Candidates should not expect to “find themselves” in business school, though in reality often this happens. If you do have multiple ideas in mind, some schools are comfortable with understanding your thought process and decision-making criteria (we discuss this with our clients on a case-by-case basis). Most schools, however, will want candidates to have clear plans laid out before they arrive on campus.
2) Be consistent.
Your goals should be YOUR goals. This means they should not vary from school to school. Candidates can lose credibility by changing their goals to please the audience and it can be difficult to articulate true passion (per point 6 below) for goals that are not genuine.
3) Your career goals should be ambitious, yet attainable.
As valuable as an MBA is, you likely will not be running a department on the first day out of business school. Do your research and figure out what jobs are realistic for you. You can start by looking at career postings from companies in your target industry. Pay close attention to required industry experience, particularly if you are considering changing careers. This will give you a good idea of what role you might be qualified for immediately post-MBA and allow you to specifically note which position you hope to secure after school.
4) Consider logical career pathing.
With your attainable role as a launching point, set out an ambitious path and long-term goal for yourself. This long-term goal is your opportunity to dream big and show how you will drive change in your future industry. It should flow logically (though not necessarily obviously) from your short-term goals. While you do not need to rise up the standard career ranks at your target firm (though it is perfectly fine if this is your goal) your career path should make sense to the reader and allow you to leverage the skills you will develop during your MBA and throughout your early post-MBA career.
5) Share how you will be unique.
Even if you have a very common career goal, such as becoming a management consultant or an investment banker, you want to share how you will make your unique mark. Perhaps there is a specific area of expertise you intend to develop within the consulting industry or a sector you will focus on. You must go beyond simply stating what position you are hoping to achieve. Think deeper and share your vision for improving your chosen field or company.
6) Articulate passion.
A strong career goals essay will communicate passion for your future field. This does not mean that you need a long explanation for why you selected this career path, but as you provide the context and discuss your future it should be clear to the reader that this is a profession you are excited about. Sharing what drove you to this field and current innovations you are particularly intrigued by is one way to show such passion.
Remember, while there are some overused career goals, there is generally no right or wrong goal. Instead, career essays fail by not hitting on these points.
Need personal support? Founded by a Wharton and MIT graduate, Personal MBA Coach regularly helps applicants navigate their applications each year. Our comprehensive support includes mock interviews with a team of former M7 interviewers and customized GMAT/GRE tutoring with tutors who scored in the 99th
percentile.
Personal MBA Coach has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 11 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at +1 617-645-2424 or email for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your MBA dreams a reality!
Sign up now and lock in rates before they increase later this spring!
You may also like these other blog articles:
The 2020 Best Business School Rankings
How To Get In When Reapplying
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________
Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

Sign up for a free consultation!

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Personal MBA Coach Founder
User avatar
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Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
Affiliations: Wharton, MIT
Joined: 11 Sep 2010
Posts: 1643
Location: United States (NY)
Overall Client Admit Rate: 96%
Candidate Success Spotlight: Wharton, Chicago Booth, Kellogg & Yale SO  [#permalink]

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New post 24 Apr 2019, 07:02
FROM Personal MBA Coach: Candidate Success Spotlight: Wharton, Chicago Booth, Kellogg & Yale SOM Admit With $70K Scholarship
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Some of the most frequent questions I get from applicants are: what does a successful candidate profile look like? and how did X get accepted into so many schools!
Naturally, there are countless answers to these questions, but in response to applicant demand, I post Candidate Success Stories from time to time.
Below I have shared a deep dive into one recent success including a Q&A with the candidate to shed some light on the process that I take with my clients and share lessons this candidate has graciously offered to pass on.
Find out how this candidate was accepted to four top schools and secured $70K in scholarships.
Profile Overview
Schools Admitted To: Wharton (w/Scholarship), Chicago Booth (w/Scholarship), Kellogg, Yale SOM
Scholarship: $70K
Gender/Ethnicity: Female/Chinese
Years of Exp.: 5
GMAT: Low 700s
Pre-MBA Experience: Strategy & Consulting
Education: Large State School
GPA: High 3’s
Candidate Q&A
Personal MBA Coach:What was the hardest part of the application process?
Candidate: The hardest part of the application process is coming up with your story and balancing your work and life at the same time. Together, we had to figure out what stories, experience, and angle to use for specific programs and schools. The process of narrowing down my life experience is daunting yet introspective. It is probably the hardest part of the application process to figure out who I really am and who I want to be with the supporting evidence to tell the story. The other hart part is how to balance work and life during application process and not to go completely “crazy”.
Personal MBA Coach:How did you decide on which schools to apply to?
Candidate: I wanted to obtain a well-rounded management degree with the opportunity to go on global treks and take on “stretch” opportunities through different programming. … I looked into brand reputation, ranking, global outreach, and student programming. I also made sure that I talked to current students or alumni of the programs.
Personal MBA Coach:What was the biggest surprise for you throughout the application process?
Candidate: The biggest surprise was how much the admission committee knows about you when you get invited to the interview stage. I often thought that all applicants are like a number to the committee. However, in my personal interview experience, a lot of my interviewers actually read my resumes and asked pointed questions instead of the more general ones. I am glad that we were prepared accordingly by school, advice I would not have had on my own!
Personal MBA Coach:What key learnings did you take away that you would like to share with others?
Candidate: My biggest takeaway throughout this process is that the admission team conducts a very well-rounded and comprehensive evaluation of a person’s application instead of just focusing on GMAT scores or a singular factor. I was very concerned about my relatively low GMAT score, however, I focused a lot of time on my essays, my resume, and extra-currics thanks to Personal MBA Coach’s strong push. In the end, everything came together and I got good results. Don’t focus too much on one part of your application. Build a well-rounded profile for yourself and stay true to yourself.
Personal MBA Coach:What do you wish you had done differently?
Candidate: I would start taking the GMAT test earlier. I applied Round 1 and I was still taking tests when I was finishing up my essays and applications, which was quite stressful. I would suggest that everyone get that out of the way first. Luckily once I started tutoring with your team, my scores improved. But I should have started that earlier.
Personal MBA Coach:How did Personal MBA Coach help you?
Candidate: Scott was a key piece to my application process. He was very straightforward and honest about evaluating my profile, not giving me false hopes, but also encouraging me to reach higher. Scott was very valuable when we worked on narrowing down my “life stories” and helping me pick and choose what stories to use for what school. Having his help is also a stress-reliever during the hectic application process. I couldn’t have done it without Scott’s help and the team, especially for GMAT prep!
Personal MBA Coach:Do you have any final pieces of advice for perspective candidates?
Candidate: As cliché as it sounds, enjoy your application process. Looking back to it, I think it was a very good soul-searching exercise for me. As we are busy with work and life, I think it’s great to have the opportunity to be introspective about yourself. Best of luck!
Need personal support? Founded by a Wharton and MIT graduate, Personal MBA Coach regularly helps applicants navigate their applications each year. Our comprehensive support includes mock interviews with a team of former M7 interviewers and customized GMAT/GRE tutoring with tutors who scored in the 99th
percentile.
Personal MBA Coach has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 11 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at +1 617-645-2424 or email for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your MBA dreams a reality!
You may also like these other blog articles:
Personal MBA Coach's 5-Month Round 1 Success Plan
The 2020 Best Business School Rankings
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________
Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

Sign up for a free consultation!

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Personal MBA Coach Founder
User avatar
P
Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
Affiliations: Wharton, MIT
Joined: 11 Sep 2010
Posts: 1643
Location: United States (NY)
Overall Client Admit Rate: 96%
Advice For MBA Applicants Looking To Change Careers  [#permalink]

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New post 01 May 2019, 11:02
FROM Personal MBA Coach: Advice For MBA Applicants Looking To Change Careers
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Many candidates pursue an MBA with the hopes of altering their career paths. While this is a valid strategy, applicants looking to change careers should put in some extra work now to show that your desired career is both authentic AND attainable.
Here are some easy actions you can take now and while completing your MBA application essays and interviews to increase your chances of success!
Do your research. Know the role and industry that you aspire to join and understand the skills required for success. All too often we read vague goals statements that show a candidate does not really know his future industry. Look up companies in the industry who are hiring and read the job descriptions. Check LinkedIn to see where MBA graduates are going and talk to friends or former classmates who work in the space. Understand the industry’s career pathing. The more you know about your future industry, the more authentic your essays will sound as you begin to articulate your goals.
Look for extra-curricular work in your target industry. Volunteering in your future industry or function can be a great way to not only solidify your interest, but also to show the reader that you have truly given this future career some serious thought and consideration. This will help add cohesion to your overall story. It is ok to think broadly as you consider related activities as long as you can draw a clear connection for the reader.
Seek out related projects in your current role. In some cases, this is easy to do. For instance, if you are a consultant seeking to transition to the technology space, ask to be staffed on a project in the industry. In other cases, you may have to be more creative. However, even experiences such as working on cross-functional projects or leading internal initiatives can exposure you to related departments, so do not be afraid to think outside of the box.
Make a personal tie to your future career. As you begin to explain your career aspirations, think about whether there is a personal connection you have with this career. Remember your applications should explain who you are as a person and what makes you unique, so your career goals can demonstrate a personal fit, even if the professional one is not immediately apparent. This is the type of one-on-one story telling we work on with our clients.
Point out similarities between your current role and future goals. It is important to show admissions committee members that you are set up to succeed. Even if you are not able to gain experience in your future industry, there are likely to be past experiences you can draw upon. Think about the most important criteria for success in your future role and point out how you have already developed and demonstrated these skills.
We specialize in providing our candidates with tailored advice, helping them to articulate their unique stories.
Need personal support? Founded by a Wharton and MIT graduate, Personal MBA Coach regularly helps applicants navigate their applications each year. Our comprehensive support includes mock interviews with a team of former M7 interviewers and customized GMAT/GRE tutoring with tutors who scored in the 99th
percentile.
Personal MBA Coach has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 11 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at +1 617-645-2424 or email for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your MBA dreams a reality!
You may also like these other blog articles:
Candidate Success Spotlight
The 2020 Best Business School Rankings
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________
Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

Sign up for a free consultation!

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Personal MBA Coach Founder
User avatar
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Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
Affiliations: Wharton, MIT
Joined: 11 Sep 2010
Posts: 1643
Location: United States (NY)
Overall Client Admit Rate: 96%
Personal MBA Coach’s Takeaways from the 2019 AIGAC MBA Applicant Surve  [#permalink]

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New post 08 May 2019, 12:02
FROM Personal MBA Coach: Personal MBA Coach’s Takeaways from the 2019 AIGAC MBA Applicant Survey
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This is a very exciting time of year for me, for Personal MBA Coach, and for the Association of International Graduate Admissions Consultants (AIGAC). This week, as the Chair of the Survey Committee who sits on the AIGAC Board of Directors, I presented the results of our comprehensive 2019 survey to admissions directors of top MBA programs including HBS, MIT Sloan, Chicago Booth, Columbia Business School, UVA Darden, Berkeley Haas, Michigan Ross, Yale SOM, London Business School and others at our annual conference. A special thank you to UVA Darden, Georgetown McDonough and Duke Fuqua for hosting this year!
Each year, AIGAC conducts a survey of over 1,000 current and previous MBA applicants in order to better understand the MBA application process. In so doing, we collect advice for students, schools, and consultants on how to improve the MBA application process.
I was delighted to share valuable insights from this year’s survey yesterday on how to better interact with applicants in today’s digital environment with both fellow MBA admissions consultants and admissions directors.
Given that many of the survey takeaways are equally as valuable for MBA applicants, below I have shared my take on the highlights from this year’s presentation.
1) MBA applicants are applying to an increasing number of MBA programs.
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In 2019, the average candidate applied to 4.5 schools, up from 3.8 in the previous year. 46% of applicants applied to 5 or more programs (up from 36% last year).
This is in line with what I advise my clients, who on average apply to 5 schools each. International schools saw the largest increase in applications, which is unsurprising given the rankings improvements international schools have enjoyed in recent years and the political climate and interest of applicants to hedge themselves across regions.
2) MBA applicants placed an increased value on their future school’s network.
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“Access to a strong network” was tied for the #2 reason students selected a specific MBA program and saw the largest increase, +9% from last year. Access to information was the #1 reason and job prospect access shared the #2 spot. Notably, the desire to have a positive impact also saw a sizable increase this year.
3) While reputation and rank remained the top factors in school selection, culture saw the biggest increase.
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There was a whopping 17pt increase in the % of respondents who cited school culture as a top factor influencing their choice of schools. 50% of applicants also reported career impact as a top factor and just under 50% cited location as a top factor.
4) Admissions consultants most often advise candidates to apply to schools they did not previously consider and to improve their GMAT scores.
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36% of candidates reported applying to a school they would not have considered without their MBA admissions consultants, while 32% sought to increase their GMAT scores. This underscores candidate opinion that the value of an admissions consultant goes beyond supporting applicants with essay development.
For the complete survey results including how students interact with schools and what candidates think about the LOR process check out our press release!
Stay tuned for a more detailed analysis of the AIGAC conference next week!
Need personal support? Founded by a Wharton and MIT graduate, Personal MBA Coach regularly helps applicants navigate their applications each year. As the #4 ranked admissions consultant on Poets & Quants, our comprehensive support includes mock interviews with a team of former M7 interviewers and customized GMAT/GRE tutoring with tutors who scored in the 99th
percentile.
Personal MBA Coach has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 11 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at +1 617-645-2424 or email for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your MBA dreams a reality!
You may also like these other blog articles:
Candidate Success Spotlight
The 2020 Best Business School Rankings
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Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
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Overall Client Admit Rate: 96%
Harvard Business School Class of 2022 - Essay Question & Analysis - Fa  [#permalink]

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New post 10 May 2019, 10:02
FROM Personal MBA Coach: Harvard Business School Class of 2022 - Essay Question & Analysis - Fall 2019 - Spring 2020
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Once again, Harvard Business School was the first to officially kick off the official application season with yesterday’s announcement (as predicted) that its application question will remain the same for class of 2022 hopefuls.
While the application itself officially opens in June, we recommend that you take this opportunity to get a head start on your essay.
The 2019-2020 deadlines are as follows:
Round 1: September 4, 2019
Round 2: January 6, 2020
The HBS essay is arguably one of the most difficult to tackle, given its open-ended nature.
Below we have reiterated Personal MBA Coach’s key tips for approaching the one and only essay: “As we review your application, what more would you like us to know as we consider your candidacy for the Harvard Business School MBA Program?”
I have spent the past week meeting with top admissions directors during the 2019 Association of International Graduate Admissions Consultants (AIGAC) conference. As the Chair of the Survey Committee who sits on the AIGAC Board of Directors, I presented the results of our comprehensive 2019 survey to admissions directors of top MBA programs, including: HBS, MIT Sloan, Chicago Booth, Columbia Business School, UVA Darden, Berkeley Haas, Michigan Ross, Yale SOM, and London Business School, while also gathering key insights from each school on their trends, upcoming changes and advice for future applicants.
Authenticity was one of the key emerging themes. Admissions directors reiterated how they want you to be honest and reflect that you have growth to come. You are applying to business school to learn and develop. Do not write what you think admissions directors want to hear or paint a picture of perfection. As I share my advice for tackling the HBS essay, I cannot stress enough the importance of authenticity.
This essay is an open invitation to show HBS what is truly interesting about your profile. This question allows you to focus and elaborate on what is important to you. Think about this essay as your chance to let them “meet” the real you—the authentic person behind the resume and application questions.
As everyone is likely well aware, HBS educates and admits leaders. It goes without saying that whatever story or stories you choose should show your leadership and demonstrate how you have excelled across disciplines. HBS students will emerge as leaders in the areas they are most passionate about. They will drive change. They are not afraid to stand up for their beliefs. They show courage. You want the admissions committee to see and understand how you personify these traits.
I advise applicants to watch this video on the HBS case method to re-enforce how critical leadership and diversity of thought is to HBS. Keep this in mind, along with Harvard’s other stated values of analytics and community, as you craft your essays.
While we recommend that most applicants show their professional accomplishments, make sure to share enough anecdotally so that the admissions committee can learn more about you on a personal level. Successful essays have included some sort of personal anecdote at a minimum and often a much more detailed personal story, which is often tied to a recurring theme throughout your essay.
Think about what makes you unique and why you made the choices that you did. The most accomplished individuals follow their passions, and these are usually shaped by particular experiences or personality traits. Consider what has had the greatest impact on your choices, who you are today or who you want to be. This will likely give you some areas to expand upon.
But do not just tell this story; as we have said in the past, try to help the reader live it.
Finally, mention your future ambitions and how HBS will fit. This is NOT a why HBS or career goals essay, but you would be remiss not to give the admissions committee a brief glimpse of where you are headed (which should naturally flow from the rest of the essay) and how HBS is uniquely suited to help you on this path.
Key Takeaways:
Make your essay interesting to read. Each year the admissions team receives ~10,000 applications.Differentiate yourself - particularly if you come from an overrepresented industry, such as consulting or banking, or an overrepresented demographic pool. HBS looks to select a well-rounded class, and it will be crucial to show how you will add unique value.Consider this essay as a starting point for an interview conversation. HBS has very detailed interviews that are planned in advance for each applicant and will dive into at least one aspect of your application. Be ready to talk in great detail during the interview about anything you submit as part of your application.Show rather than tell. Essays are much more impactful when they describe something about you, showing it in action instead of just stating the facts. Give details. Add names. Describe your setting. Tell the reader how you felt.This essay will be VERY different for everyone. Do not fall into the trap of trying to write an essay like one you have read in the past or like your friend is writing. There will be a wide range of successful essays this year, and proper execution will be the key rather than simply the content alone.Most essays that work will fall somewhere between 700-1,000 words. However, absolutely consider quality over quantity. If you can write a solid 600-word essay that is powerful and moving, do not feel the need to lengthen it. I have helped many applicants write successful essays on the shorter side.
Need personal support? Founded by a Wharton and MIT graduate, Personal MBA Coach regularly helps applicants navigate their applications each year. As the #4 ranked admissions consultant on Poets & Quants, our comprehensive support includes mock interviews with a team of former M7 interviewers and customized GMAT/GRE tutoring with tutors who scored in the 99th percentile.
Personal MBA Coach has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 11 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at +1 617-645-2424 or email for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your MBA dreams a reality!
You may also like these other blog articles:
Candidate Success Spotlight
The 2020 Best Business School Rankings
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________
Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

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Personal MBA Coach Founder
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Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
Affiliations: Wharton, MIT
Joined: 11 Sep 2010
Posts: 1643
Location: United States (NY)
Overall Client Admit Rate: 96%
Candidate Success Spotlight: Indian Male Engineer With 8 Years of Expe  [#permalink]

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New post 15 May 2019, 08:02
FROM Personal MBA Coach: Candidate Success Spotlight: Indian Male Engineer With 8 Years of Experience Accepted To Wharton, Columbia & Ross
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One of the best parts of my job is successfully guiding candidates who have previously failed! This week, I would like to share how we successfully guided this Indian Male Engineer who had previously applied to 10 schools (independently) and was rejected from all of them.
Candidate Profile Overview
Schools Admitted To: Wharton, Columbia, Ross
Ethnicity/Gender: Indian Male
Years of Exp.: 8
GMAT: 760
Pre-MBA Experience: R&D in Energy Industry
Education: Vishveswaraya Technological University, India
GPA: Strong
Despite a strong GPA and solid GMAT score, this candidate faced an uphill battle with an overrepresented profile and 8 years of pre-MBA work experience. Other roadblocks included his undergraduate university and his lack of business experience.
Find out in the candidate’s own words how Personal MBA Coach helped him achieve success!
Candidate Q&A
Personal MBA Coach:What was the hardest part of the application process?
Candidate: The hardest part for me going through this process all over again and putting forward an application that would highlight my positives and compensate for my negatives. Given that I had been previously rejected unceremoniously without interviews by 10 colleges, my confidence was really low and I had no idea what to do differently. Figuring this part out was the hardest thing I had to do which is why I turned to Personal MBA Coach.
Personal MBA Coach:How did you decide on which schools to apply to?
Candidate: The first time I applied, I looked at the school rankings and made a short list based purely on overall rank, brand name, and odds of getting in – basically, the easiest and least effective approach.
The second time I applied, leveraging Scott’s advice, I actually travelled to the schools and felt the culture and fit for myself. Initially, I considered travelling to the US and journeying school by school quite prohibitive, but I told myself that the expense probably would not mean much in the grand scheme of things.
Personally, travelling to the schools helped a lot. At some schools, I felt completely out of place while at others, I could not wait to spend two years there. For e.g. I was still debating whether to apply to Columbia but after I spoke to the students, who took the time to listen to my story and were super supportive about me applying, I knew that it would be a great fit and became one of my top schools. On the flip side, I dropped a different school that was originally high on my list because I got a seemingly ‘pretentious’ vibe from a majority of the students.
Personal MBA Coach: What was the biggest surprise for you throughout the application process?
Candidate: I knew that the application process (apart from the GMAT) would take a while but I did not realise how much effort I would have to give to it. I thought that the essays would take most of my time and the other components – resume, recommendations, short answer questions in the application – would take much less. I learned through Personal MBA Coach that I could not have been more wrong.
My resume took over 10 revisions before I liked it. Moreover, I had to spend a lot of time with my recommenders to make sure they answered the questions properly. For e.g., Wharton has a set of different questions than the standard LOR questions. Given these unique questions, I talked with them about how I consider myself to be a team player and why I may be a good fit for the Wharton classroom. After this initial discussion, they were able to cater their letter for the school.
Also, with respect to the short answer questions, you will see there is a clear difference between some applications – say, a Harvard and Stanford application. What works for one will not work for the other. All of this takes time. The first time I applied, I hurried through this part of the process in 2 weeks but the second time around, I took a good 3 months.
Personal MBA Coach:How did Personal MBA Coach help you?
Candidate:Scott was great and I am sure I would not have been to get into my dream schools this year without him. I knew that I would need someone who would understand my story properly and help me craft a unique story. After talking to a few of the major consulting firms, I realized that I needed a boutique consultant where I could deal with my consultant directly. Amongst all the boutique consultants I spoke with, I had the best connection with Scott. I liked his calm demeanor, the fact that he seemed to know the programs well, and most importantly that he had worked with many Indians before and knew how to help them. I realized his value while working with him on my first application itself. After we figured out my story, we exchanged a lot of drafts on bringing out the 'why.' Scott adds detailed notes in each draft and he always responds within 48 hours. The final essays were really really good, if I say so myself. They made so much sense and compared to the essays I had written myself during the previous application cycle, these were crystal clear. There was a perfect balance - the essays logically and clearly told the adcom what I wanted to do while bringing out the emotional angle to support why I wanted to do it. Moreover, the last aspect which is so important - the interview prep - is the best part about working with his team (he had former interviewers from top schools who conducted the mocks him). My mock interviews were super important in making sure that I do well on the day! In fact without them I am confident I would not have been nearly as good.

Personal MBA Coach:Do you have any final pieces of advice for perspective candidates?
Candidate:
People will tell you that once you get the same score again, do not take the GMAT once again. I would say go with your gut – if you think you can get a higher score then write the exam again! I took the exam 6 times. I scored 710 4 times, 720 1 time, and 760 in my last attempt even though everyone thought I was crazy to attempt it for the 6th time.Research schools properly and make sure you go to a school that you will like not only academically but also socially.Choose a consultant who has previously got into a top school and has a prestigious MBA under their belt. This is really important.Aim high! Schools are not looking for only students who have come from pedigree schools and blue-chip companies and even those who seem to be ‘average’ on paper can get into some of the best schools.
Need personal support? Founded by a Wharton and MIT graduate, Personal MBA Coach regularly helps applicants navigate their applications each year. As the #4 ranked admissions consultant on Poets & Quants, our comprehensive support includes mock interviews with a team of former M7 interviewers and customized GMAT/GRE tutoring with tutors who scored in the 99th percentile.
Personal MBA Coach has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 11 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at +1 617-645-2424 or email for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your MBA dreams a reality!
You may also like these other blog articles:
Personal MBA Coach’s Takeaways from the 2019 AIGAC MBA Applicant Survey
What To Expect From the 2019-2020 MBA Application Essays
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________
Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

Sign up for a free consultation!

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Personal MBA Coach Founder
User avatar
P
Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
Affiliations: Wharton, MIT
Joined: 11 Sep 2010
Posts: 1643
Location: United States (NY)
Overall Client Admit Rate: 96%
Personal MBA Coach Candidate Success Spotlight: Indian Male Engineer W  [#permalink]

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New post 22 May 2019, 07:02
FROM Personal MBA Coach: Personal MBA Coach Candidate Success Spotlight: Indian Male Engineer With 8 Years of Experience Accepted To Wharton, Columbia & Ross
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One of the best parts of my job is successfully guiding candidates who have previously failed! This week, I would like to share how we successfully guided this Indian Male Engineer who had previously applied to 10 schools (independently) and was rejected from all of them.
Candidate Profile Overview
Schools Admitted To: Wharton, Columbia, Ross
Ethnicity/Gender: Indian Male
Years of Exp.: 8
GMAT: 760
Pre-MBA Experience: R&D in Energy Industry
Education: Vishveswaraya Technological University, India
GPA: Strong
Despite a strong GPA and solid GMAT score, this candidate faced an uphill battle with an overrepresented profile and 8 years of pre-MBA work experience. Other roadblocks included his undergraduate university and his lack of business experience.
Find out in the candidate’s own words how Personal MBA Coach helped him achieve success!
Candidate Q&A
Personal MBA Coach:What was the hardest part of the application process?
Varun (Candidate): The hardest part for me going through this process all over again and putting forward an application that would highlight my positives and compensate for my negatives. Given that I had been previously rejected unceremoniously without interviews by 10 colleges, my confidence was really low and I had no idea what to do differently. Figuring this part out was the hardest thing I had to do which is why I turned to Personal MBA Coach.
Personal MBA Coach:How did you decide on which schools to apply to?
Varun: The first time I applied, I looked at the school rankings and made a short list based purely on overall rank, brand name, and odds of getting in – basically, the easiest and least effective approach.
The second time I applied, leveraging Scott’s advice, I actually travelled to the schools and felt the culture and fit for myself. Initially, I considered travelling to the US and journeying school by school quite prohibitive, but I told myself that the expense probably would not mean much in the grand scheme of things.
Personally, travelling to the schools helped a lot. At some schools, I felt completely out of place while at others, I could not wait to spend two years there. For e.g. I was still debating whether to apply to Columbia but after I spoke to the students, who took the time to listen to my story and were super supportive about me applying, I knew that it would be a great fit and became one of my top schools. On the flip side, I dropped a different school that was originally high on my list because I got a seemingly ‘pretentious’ vibe from a majority of the students.
Personal MBA Coach: What was the biggest surprise for you throughout the application process?
Varun: I knew that the application process (apart from the GMAT) would take a while but I did not realise how much effort I would have to give to it. I thought that the essays would take most of my time and the other components – resume, recommendations, short answer questions in the application – would take much less. I learned through Personal MBA Coach that I could not have been more wrong.
My resume took over 10 revisions before I liked it. Moreover, I had to spend a lot of time with my recommenders to make sure they answered the questions properly. For e.g., Wharton has a set of different questions than the standard LOR questions. Given these unique questions, I talked with them about how I consider myself to be a team player and why I may be a good fit for the Wharton classroom. After this initial discussion, they were able to cater their letter for the school.
Also, with respect to the short answer questions, you will see there is a clear difference between some applications – say, a Harvard and Stanford application. What works for one will not work for the other. All of this takes time. The first time I applied, I hurried through this part of the process in 2 weeks but the second time around, I took a good 3 months.
Personal MBA Coach:How did Personal MBA Coach help you?
Varun:Scott was great and I am sure I would not have been to get into my dream schools this year without him. I knew that I would need someone who would understand my story properly and help me craft a unique story. After talking to a few of the major consulting firms, I realized that I needed a boutique consultant where I could deal with my consultant directly. Amongst all the boutique consultants I spoke with, I had the best connection with Scott. I liked his calm demeanor, the fact that he seemed to know the programs well, and most importantly that he had worked with many Indians before and knew how to help them. I realized his value while working with him on my first application itself. After we figured out my story, we exchanged a lot of drafts on bringing out the 'why.' Scott adds detailed notes in each draft and he always responds within 48 hours. The final essays were really really good, if I say so myself. They made so much sense and compared to the essays I had written myself during the previous application cycle, these were crystal clear. There was a perfect balance - the essays logically and clearly told the adcom what I wanted to do while bringing out the emotional angle to support why I wanted to do it. Moreover, the last aspect which is so important - the interview prep - is the best part about working with his team (he had former interviewers from top schools who conducted the mocks him). My mock interviews were super important in making sure that I do well on the day! In fact without them I am confident I would not have been nearly as good.

Personal MBA Coach:Do you have any final pieces of advice for perspective candidates?
Varun:
People will tell you that once you get the same score again, do not take the GMAT once again. I would say go with your gut – if you think you can get a higher score then write the exam again! I took the exam 6 times. I scored 710 4 times, 720 1 time, and 760 in my last attempt even though everyone thought I was crazy to attempt it for the 6th time.Research schools properly and make sure you go to a school that you will like not only academically but also socially.Choose a consultant who has previously got into a top school and has a prestigious MBA under their belt. This is really important.Aim high! Schools are not looking for only students who have come from pedigree schools and blue-chip companies and even those who seem to be ‘average’ on paper can get into some of the best schools.
Need personal support? Founded by a Wharton and MIT graduate, Personal MBA Coach regularly helps applicants navigate their applications each year. As the #4 ranked admissions consultant on Poets & Quants, our comprehensive support includes mock interviews with a team of former M7 interviewers and customized GMAT/GRE tutoring with tutors who scored in the 99th percentile.
Personal MBA Coach has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 11 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at +1 617-645-2424 or email for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your MBA dreams a reality!
You may also like these other blog articles:
Personal MBA Coach’s Takeaways from the 2019 AIGAC MBA Applicant Survey
What To Expect From the 2019-2020 MBA Application Essays
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________
Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

Sign up for a free consultation!

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Personal MBA Coach Founder
User avatar
P
Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
Affiliations: Wharton, MIT
Joined: 11 Sep 2010
Posts: 1643
Location: United States (NY)
Overall Client Admit Rate: 96%
Columbia Business School Class of 2022 - Essay Questions & Analysis -   [#permalink]

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New post 22 May 2019, 08:02
FROM Personal MBA Coach: Columbia Business School Class of 2022 - Essay Questions & Analysis - Fall 2019 - Spring 2020
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Columbia Business School has just released its application deadlines* and essays for this season. Read below for Personal MBA Coach’s tips on tackling this year’s questions.
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*Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis
Once again, Columbia has three essay questions. Essay 1 has remained unchanged as it has for many years, while essays 2 and 3 are both new this year. These three questions together will prompt candidates to cover a wide range of information about their goals, plans on campus, personal stories and leadership styles. Avoid repeating yourself while ensuring that the three essays work together to paint an accurate and consistent picture of your candidacy.
Essay #1: Through your resume and recommendations, we have a clear sense of your professional path to date. What are your career goals over the next 3 - 5 years and what, in your imagination, would be your long-term dream job? (500 words)
Columbia specifically asks that candidates not repeat their resumes in this career goals question. While some mention of your past is still expected, it should be brief and used as context to further elaborate on why your goals are attainable. This question explicitly asks for both a short-term goal and a long-term dream job so be sure to include both. These goals should show a logical progression from your current experience. If they do not, then a brief explanation is a good idea so that the admissions committee can understand how you will realistically attain your goals. Discussing your long-term dream job is an opportunity to show the admissions committee your true ambitions and what really matters to you professionally. It is important that candidates have lofty goals here but ones that make sense for them and fit with both their short-term goals and overall story. This is a unique chance to show not only how you envision your career unfolding but to give the reader a little more insight into who you are by adding at least a brief mention of why this career interests you. Finally, while not explicitly asked, a bit on how you will prepare for these goals while at Columbia will offer a nice segue into Essay #2.
Essay #2: Why do you feel Columbia Business School is a good fit for you? (250 Words)
This year Columbia is taking a more direct approach to the “fit” question. CBS previously asked candidates about their desire to be in New York City. While Columbia is now looking at fit more broadly, mentioning how you plan to leverage the city would still be advised here.
With only 250 words and a lot to cover, it is important to be focused and specific. Show that you have done your research on what options are available on campus and which specifically interests you. Naturally, a tie should be made between these opportunities and your career goals. This is the time to discuss the classes you hope to take, clubs you will join and other programs of interest to you, such as speaker series or immersion seminars. I would also recommend that candidates consider culture, which as I shared in a recent presentation to admissions directors is becoming increasingly important in the school selection process.
Essay #3: Who is a leader you admire, and why? (250 Words)
This short essay is a loaded one, prompting candidates to think about both their personal stories and leadership styles. To achieve this balance well, I would select a leader that you hope to emulate. Perhaps she comes from a similar background or has a shared career passion. Another option for this essay is choosing a leader with a shared belief. While some context on this leader is important, remember that this essay is about you. This is your chance to show the admissions committee the type of leader you are and will continue to be AND how your experiences and passions have shaped this. Be sure to share the context behind your answer, helping the reader to understand how you developed your leadership style and philosophy.
Finally, Columbia has an optional essay. As I advise for most schools, do not feel compelled to answer this unless you have something specific to explain in your background (i.e. a career gap, an unusual recommender, extreme personal circumstances, etc.) This is not the time to spend 500 words professing your love for Columbia.
Need personal support? Founded by a Wharton and MIT graduate, Personal MBA Coach regularly helps applicants navigate their applications each year. As the #4 ranked admissions consultant on Poets & Quants, our comprehensive support includes mock interviews with a team of former M7 interviewers and customized GMAT/GRE tutoring with tutors who scored in the 99th percentile.
Personal MBA Coach has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 11 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at +1 617-645-2424 or email for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your MBA dreams a reality!
You may also like these other blog articles:
Candidate Success Spotlight
2019-2020 HBS Essay Analysis
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________
Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

Sign up for a free consultation!

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Personal MBA Coach Founder
User avatar
P
Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
Affiliations: Wharton, MIT
Joined: 11 Sep 2010
Posts: 1643
Location: United States (NY)
Overall Client Admit Rate: 96%
Essay Writing 101  [#permalink]

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New post 29 May 2019, 11:02
FROM Personal MBA Coach: Essay Writing 101
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As the questions begin to roll out for 2019-2020 applicants (Harvard Business School and Columbia Business School have already released their questions, and more schools are expected to follow in the coming weeks), many of you may be putting pencil to paper (so to speak) on your application essays. Naturally, there are numerous factors to consider as you draft essays, but this week we are going back to the basics with MBA Essay Writing 101.
Essay Writing Process:
I advise my candidates to follow a 5-step process as they develop their application essays, leaving adequate time for each stage.
1. Brainstorm
Brainstorm each question one at a time. For those applying early decision, start with ED essays first. Otherwise, begin with the easiest essay as your writing will improve throughout the process. As you develop potential topics, consider relevant strengths, hobbies, passions, and experiences.
2. Outline
Before you begin to develop prose, outline the key points you hope to cover. Pay special attention to flow and length here. (Hint: a 250-word outline is too long for a 500-word essay).
3. Draft
Once you have a solid outline, begin to put together your first draft. At this stage, it is ok if your writing is not perfect and most first drafts should and will be a bit longer than the final product. For your early versions, be sure that your points flow well and are easy to follow. Do not worry about grammar, spelling, and other minor errors.
4. Edit Again & Again
This is the longest part of the essay writing process. Edit your essays as many times as it takes to get them right. Finalize general content and flow, then begin to focus on fine-tuning your writing. If your essay is not working, do not be afraid to start over. You may need to repeat steps 1-3 multiple times.
5. Proofread
Always ask someone unfamiliar with your work (and ideally your industry) to read over your essays. You will need a fresh set of eyes to catch all mistakes. Personal MBA Coach uses proofreaders for each MBA application for this reason.
Now that you have the overall writing process down. Let’s look at some key tips to keep in mind as you develop your essays.
Essay Guiding Principles:
1) Answer the question ASKED
It is surprising how often candidates write beautiful essays but do not answer the question. Instead of writing what you think admissions committee members want to hear, answer the question. While thinking a bit outside of the box and considering the why behind an essay prompt is advised, first and foremost you must answer the question.
2) Write authentically
Do not write what you think admissions committee members want to read. There is no one perfect candidate profile. Instead, your uniqueness will be some of your greatest selling points. Your essays should paint a clear picture of who you are, what motivates you, and what you are passionate about. Do not feel compelled to show how you fit in the mold that seemingly makes up the “ideal” candidate. If you have no desire to run a non-profit, that is ok. If you are not motivated by improving the environment, do not pretend you are. Readers will see right through this and you could end up doing more harm than good.
3) Be succinct and avoid repetition
Keep in mind that the essays are just one part of the application. In addition to submitting an MBA resume (unsure how to write an MBA resume? Check out these tips), most schools will have you fill out a detailed application. This means admissions committee members will read about everything you have accomplished, all roles you have held, and the awards that you have won. There is no need to try to fit this all into your essays. So instead of squeezing in as much as you can, focus on sharing a few key highlights and adding the details as well as your voice. This is your chance to explain your choices, show your accomplishment, and share your passions. The fewer things you try to cover in your essays, the more you will be able to achieve this objective.
4) Keep your language approachable
The terms you regularly discuss at the office may be foreign to others, including admissions committee members. When in doubt, do not assume the reader is familiar with everything about your job. Focus on language that is more general and easier to use to compare you to other applicants. Admissions committee members do not need or want all of the technical details anyway.
5) Limit flowery prose
Similarly, I often read complex flowery prose. You are not submitting your essays for a Pulitzer prize or applying to become a professional writer. Instead, you are telling your story. While of course you want your essays to be well written and free from grammatical mistakes and typos, you also want them to be relatable and easy to follow. Everyone, from your grandmother to a professor of microfinance, should be able to understand your essays. They should also convey why you are someone others would want to study with, learn from, and eventually be inspired by. That type of person is human and down to earth. Your essays should show this.
Need personal support? Founded by a Wharton and MIT graduate, Personal MBA Coach regularly helps applicants navigate their applications each year. As the #4 ranked admissions consultant on Poets & Quants, our comprehensive support includes mock interviews with a team of former M7 interviewers and customized GMAT/GRE tutoring with tutors who scored in the 99th percentile.
Personal MBA Coach has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 11 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at +1 617-645-2424 or email for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your MBA dreams a reality!
You may also like these other blog articles:
Columbia Essay Analysis
2019-2020 HBS Essay Analysis
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

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Kellogg Class of 2022 - Essay Questions & Analysis - Fall 2019 - Sprin  [#permalink]

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New post 31 May 2019, 14:02
FROM Personal MBA Coach: Kellogg Class of 2022 - Essay Questions & Analysis - Fall 2019 - Spring 2020
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Kellogg has released its application deadlines and essays for this season. Read below for Personal MBA Coach’s tips on tackling this year’s questions.
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Once again, Kellogg asks applicants to answer two essay questions. Essay 1 remains largely unchanged for the third year in a row while Essay 2 is new this year. These two fairly broad essays give candidates a good opportunity to reflect on and discuss multiple aspects of their candidacy. Below we have shared these essay questions along with Personal MBA Coach’s recommendations on how to approach them.
Essay 1:Kellogg’s purpose is to educate, equip and inspire brave leaders who create lasting value. Provide a recent example where you have demonstrated leadership and created value. What challenges did you face and what did you learn? (450 words)
Personal MBA Coach’s Take: The only change in this first question is the request for a “recent” example. Last year, a time period was not specified. Many candidates are likely to share a professional story to answer this first prompt. However, strong leadership examples in your extra-curricular activities could also work well here, provided they are fairly recent.
Be sure to think of a significant undertaking where you can clearly demonstrate the value you added. This story should also be easy enough to explain that you do not have to waste too many words from this short 450-word limit setting up the situation. Be sure to discuss the actions you took and try to show how these actions required you to demonstrate bravery and leadership.
Equally as important as what you did is what you learned from this experience. Learnings should be specific. Ideally, you would also mention how you have carried them forward to future endeavors. A strong answer here will not only demonstrate leadership but also showcase your strengths and specific skills.
Essay 2: Values are what guide you in your life and work. What values are important to you and how have they influenced you? (450 words)
Personal MBA Coach’s Take: This new essay is a challenging one as it forces candidates to reflect on what is truly important to them. Authenticity will be key when developing your answer to this question. Do not simply discuss the values that you think admissions committee members will want to hear. Instead, write about values that you have repeatedly demonstrated in your life. For each value selected (while I do not advise a laundry list, you should include more than one value), discuss WHY this value is important to you and show HOW you have lived this value. With this question, candidates can and should include some personal detail so that the reader can truly understand how this value has influenced their actions, beliefs, and aspirations. It is particularly crucial that you have someone who knows you well read this essay to ensure it is authentic. (Of course, this is a good idea for all essay questions).
Finally, Kellogg has retained its video essay. Read our tips for handling videos and other application extras here.
Need personal support? Founded by a Wharton and MIT graduate, Personal MBA Coach regularly helps applicants navigate their applications each year. As the #4 ranked admissions consultant on Poets & Quants, our comprehensive support includes mock interviews with a team of former M7 interviewers and customized GMAT/GRE tutoring with tutors who scored in the 99th percentile.
Personal MBA Coach has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 11 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at +1 617-645-2424 or email for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your MBA dreams a reality!
You may also like these other blog articles:
2019-2020 Columbia Essay Analysis
2019-2020 HBS Essay Analysis
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

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scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
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Personal MBA Coach Founder
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Status: Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting from a Wharton graduate - Helping applicants get into top global business schools since 2008
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Overall Client Admit Rate: 96%
Michigan Ross Class of 2022 - Essay Questions & Analysis - Fall 2019 -  [#permalink]

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New post 05 Jun 2019, 08:02
FROM Personal MBA Coach: Michigan Ross Class of 2022 - Essay Questions & Analysis - Fall 2019 - Spring 2020
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University of Michigan Ross School of Business has released its application deadlines and essays for this season.
Ross has delayed its Round 2 and Round 3 deadlines a bit this year. According to the school:
“We’re pushing the Round 2 deadline back a bit so applicants have a little more time after the holidays to finish apps. We’re pushing the Round 3 deadline back by a few weeks to accommodate applicants who get more clarity on their business school plans later in the winter.”
This should be good news for many applicants. This year’s deadlines are as follows:
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As for the application essays, very little changed this year. Ross only altered the wording on the final prompt, leaving the other five untouched.
SHORT ANSWERS (CHOOSE ONE FROM EACH GROUP; 100 WORDS EACH)
Group 1
I want people to know that I:I made a difference when I:
Group 2
I am out of my comfort zone when:I was humbled when:
Group 3
I was aware that I am different when:I was challenged when:
We encourage you to share personal examples in these short answers to allow us to learn more about who you are as a person.
Read below for Personal MBA Coach’s tips on tackling these questions.
With a more traditional career focused essay to follow, heed Ross’s advice to consider your personal background as you answer these short questions. Pick the prompt that resonates best with you as there is no preferred option.
For group 1, think about your most unique attribute or accomplishment. What sets you apart from other applicants? A personal accomplishment or a fond personal success story would work well here. Volunteer or extracurricular stories could also be good to cover.
If you have a unique skill or talent, group 1 would be a good place to share it. If you did something amazing that is not on your resume or that you want to call more attention to, that would also work well for this prompt. Other options for this prompt include examples of passions or values.
For the second group, show the reader a bit about your character. What would working and studying with you be like? This is not the time to sing your praises but instead the time to show you are human. Show what you have gained from this experience and let the reader see that you are someone students would want to be around.
The final group gives you a chance to show the reader how you are unique from your peers. Remember, MBA admissions directors aspire to bring a well-rounded group of students to campus each year. This is your chance to share something about your upbringing or personality that will position you to add another perspective to class discussions.
Alternatively, with the updated prompt: I was challenged when.., candidates have the opportunity to show an area of relative weakness. When meeting with Admissions Directors during the annual Association of International Graduate Admissions Consultants (AIGAC) conference, I learned that authenticity and growth were key hot points for many adcom members. Candidates are applying to business school to grow and are not expected to be “perfect” when they arrive. Discussing a challenge that you have overcome and/or will continue to overcome could be a nice choice here.
Career Goal Essay:
Michigan Ross is a place where people from all backgrounds with different career goals can thrive. Please share your short-term career goal. Why is this career goal right for you? (300 words)
For the short career goals essays, there is a lot to cover in a small amount of space. As advised, be straightforward here. If you need help thinking through your goals, we have published a blog with our general tips. Once you have clearly stated your short-term career goal, you need to explain both why an MBA is right for you at this time and more specifically, why Ross. Be sure to spend some time thinking about the skills necessary to succeed, how you have these skills, and how you will continue to perfect them. Be specific in terms of what you hope to take advantage of on campus and why Ross is a good fit. As always, do your research and avoid vague statements and generalities. No copy and pasting here, sorry!
Need personal support? Founded by a Wharton and MIT graduate, Personal MBA Coach regularly helps applicants navigate their applications each year. As the #4 ranked admissions consultant on Poets & Quants, our comprehensive support includes mock interviews with a team of former M7 interviewers and customized GMAT/GRE tutoring with tutors who scored in the 99th percentile.
Personal MBA Coach has been guiding candidates through all aspects of the MBA application process for over 11 years with a 96% success rate. Call us today at +1 617-645-2424 or email for a free consultation on your profile along with how we can help make your MBA dreams a reality!
You may also like these other blog articles:
2019-2020 Columbia Essay Analysis
2019-2020 HBS Essay Analysis
ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________
Personal MBA Coach
Boutique MBA Admissions Consulting
scott@personalmbacoach.com | +1 617 645 2424
http://www.personalmbacoach.com | http://www.personalmbacoach.com/blog

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Michigan Ross Class of 2022 - Essay Questions & Analysis - Fall 2019 -   [#permalink] 05 Jun 2019, 08:02

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