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Profile Evaluation Request - PT MBA

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Intern
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Joined: 12 Apr 2018
Posts: 7
Profile Evaluation Request - PT MBA  [#permalink]

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New post 12 Apr 2018, 13:35
1
Hello!

I'm a non-traditional applicant and would appreciate your feedback and tips.

Current location: Chicagoland area
Undergrad: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Major/Minor: Molecular Biology/Chemistry
GPA: 3.61 (Graduated early in 3 yrs, while working part-time.)

WE:~ 7 yrs in Pharma as a data reporting/analytics consultant. In between, I took nearly 4 yrs off to be a stay at home mom. I was also married into the military at the time so had to relocate every 2-3 years and therefore was a teleworker for 3 of 7 yrs. I did advance/promote every 2 yrs, but I do believe teleworking limited my networking and advancement opportunities. While I don't regret putting my career on hold to care for my children when they needed me most, I am concerned by how admissions committees may view this (and my older age, 34).

I've been told that my strengths include delivering under pressure, being resourceful, and taking ownership. Being a military spouse taught me that I could handle more than I thought possible, and it encouraged me to dream bigger. I think an MBA is the logical next step mostly due to timing - I've hit the ceiling in my teleworking role and must either relocate to the company headquarters in order to advance or switch jobs. I like my current company, but it makes more sense for me to relocate my job than to relocate my entire family. I don't want to overestimate their resiliency. Despite how dedicated I am to my job and career goals, my family is my biggest priority. When I learned more about the PT programs at Kellogg and Booth, I felt like they were flexible enough for a working mom. It would be a stretch and take longer than I'd like, but I could do it.

I think an MBA would give me the credibility and exposure needed to potentially switch industries/jobs OR convince my current company to break the ceiling for me as a teleworker. I also genuinely enjoy learning and am curious about entrepreneurship. Chicago is home to 2 top programs, and the prospect of being in a program with an amazing, diverse cast of peers is sooo exciting, especially in light of being a teleworker.

Also, not sure this matters, but I immigrated to the US as a child, and I definitely lived the immigrant experience with my parents. However, I didn't mention this anywhere on my app since I've been a naturalized citizen for decades.

Extracurriculars: In college, I did a lot of volunteering but none with leadership/resume quality. I was on the judicial committee for the university, which was a really amazing experience.
Currently, I'm the head of our version of the parent/teacher association in Kg and teach Bible study each Sunday. I've read so many impressive extracurriculars on here that I'm afraid admissions might laugh at mine. However, I chose those 2 bc my faith is central to who I am and also bc it allows me to spend quality time with my kids. Sometimes you can do something that reaches millions but I think there's also value in influencing a handful.

The weakest part of my app:
GMAT: 620. I didn't plan to do it this way but had to take the test cold. I ran out of time in each section except AWA (5). I've since studied and have been scoring 700+ in practice. I used to tutor part time in college for 3 entrance exams so was quite peeved that I did so poorly here. I understand no one likes excuses, so won't share them, but effectively, I plan to retake this soon.

Thanks for reading!
AstroIceCream :-)
Stratus Admissions Consultant
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Joined: 31 May 2016
Posts: 1375
Location: United States
Concentration: Marketing, Organizational Behavior
Schools: Kellogg
GPA: 3.67
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Re: Profile Evaluation Request - PT MBA  [#permalink]

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New post 13 Apr 2018, 07:24
1
AstronautIceCream wrote:
Hello!
@AstronautIceCream, first thanks for your request-- and I am really curious to know why you are Astronaut IceCream! I wanted to say that I think you will find much more support than you think-- or at least you will from me. I totally relate and understand your story-- I have 4 children myself and there were times when they were younger when I prioritized family more-- and I don't think you should regret this choice-- nor do I hold it against you in any way when I think about your future. I hope there will be more people who think this way-- and all we can do is start with ourselves-- so my advice below is to help you 100% and to also let you know I believe in you! See below for details...
I'm a non-traditional applicant and would appreciate your feedback and tips.

Current location: Chicagoland area
Undergrad: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Major/Minor: Molecular Biology/Chemistry
GPA: 3.61 (Graduated early in 3 yrs, while working part-time.)
That's awesome and with my adcom background when I see that it tells me a lot of great things about you.
WE:~ 7 yrs in Pharma as a data reporting/analytics consultant. In between, I took nearly 4 yrs off to be a stay at home mom. I was also married into the military at the time so had to relocate every 2-3 years and therefore was a teleworker for 3 of 7 yrs. I did advance/promote every 2 yrs, but I do believe teleworking limited my networking and advancement opportunities. While I don't regret putting my career on hold to care for my children when they needed me most, I am concerned by how admissions committees may view this (and my older age, 34). MBA programs WANT more women-- and if they want them-- they are going to have to accept that women have children and that some women are going to have some gaps--I believe that the climate for women in business school has never been better-- and for part-time MBA programs 34 is really a sweet spot age-- so I hope I can put that to rest for you in being an issue.

I've been told that my strengths include delivering under pressure, being resourceful, and taking ownership. Being a military spouse taught me that I could handle more than I thought possible, and it encouraged me to dream bigger. I think an MBA is the logical next step mostly due to timing - I've hit the ceiling in my teleworking role and must either relocate to the company headquarters in order to advance or switch jobs. I like my current company, but it makes more sense for me to relocate my job than to relocate my entire family. I don't want to overestimate their resiliency. Despite how dedicated I am to my job and career goals, my family is my biggest priority. When I learned more about the PT programs at Kellogg and Booth, I felt like they were flexible enough for a working mom. It would be a stretch and take longer than I'd like, but I could do it.I think both these are great options-- and I'd love to help you if you decide you want any coaching in this process.

I think an MBA would give me the credibility and exposure needed to potentially switch industries/jobs OR convince my current company to break the ceiling for me as a teleworker. I also genuinely enjoy learning and am curious about entrepreneurship. Chicago is home to 2 top programs, and the prospect of being in a program with an amazing, diverse cast of peers is sooo exciting, especially in light of being a teleworker.

Also, not sure this matters, but I immigrated to the US as a child, and I definitely lived the immigrant experience with my parents. However, I didn't mention this anywhere on my app since I've been a naturalized citizen for decades. This will not be an issue in the admissions process- you will be seen as US for application purposes-- but telling this story helps show your cross-cultural awareness so there may indeed be a good place somewhere to share this.

Extracurriculars: In college, I did a lot of volunteering but none with leadership/resume quality. I was on the judicial committee for the university, which was a really amazing experience.
Currently, I'm the head of our version of the parent/teacher association in Kg and teach Bible study each Sunday. I've read so many impressive extracurriculars on here that I'm afraid admissions might laugh at mine. However, I chose those 2 bc my faith is central to who I am and also bc it allows me to spend quality time with my kids. Sometimes you can do something that reaches millions but I think there's also value in influencing a handful.

The weakest part of my app:
GMAT: 620. I didn't plan to do it this way but had to take the test cold. I ran out of time in each section except AWA (5). I've since studied and have been scoring 700+ in practice. I used to tutor part time in college for 3 entrance exams so was quite peeved that I did so poorly here. I understand no one likes excuses, so won't share them, but effectively, I plan to retake this soon.
I would love to help you be successful! And I know you will be. If you do want a free consult-- please reach out either at this link: https://stratusadmissionscounseling.com ... b-visitor/ or if you want to private message me with your email I can reach out that way too! Your story is why I love what I do-- I want to help people reach their goals and I think being a mom and working in business can coexist together!
Thanks for reading!
AstroIceCream :-)

_________________

Donna | StratusMBACounselor | Stratus Admissions Counseling

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Intern
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Joined: 12 Apr 2018
Posts: 7
Re: Profile Evaluation Request - PT MBA  [#permalink]

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New post 14 Apr 2018, 15:26
Thank you so much for your time and insights! I really hope the Kellogg/Booth adcom folks share the same perspective. I plan on retaking the GMAT next Friday and starting my Booth app then, so may reach out to you in a couple of weeks.

To your point about more women and the conundrum we're in - one of the reasons that I'm interested in learning more about Entrepreneurship is bc I'd like to find a way to improve flexible work opportunities for families with young children or elderly parents, have relocation constraints (i.e. Military), or other contingencies holding them back from traditional work opportunities. Due to my background, I've met so many resourceful people, mostly women, who are interested in working at least part time but lack the opportunities, resources, or support. I have some coding background through work and some early ideas, but I really don't know where to start with building a business. I'm hoping a top MBA can give me that exposure and point me in the right direction.

As for my handle, I just think there's something wonderful about how even serious endeavors such as space exploration can lead to not-so-serious innovations. I used to wonder why they chose ice cream bc it wasn't a necessity and therefore unexpected. I'm glad they did bc not only is it a tasty treat, it kind of helped relate that Astronauts were still human with a shared appreciation for ice cream, despite clearly doing some extraordinary things. The other innovations like meal packs/growing veggies just didn't capture my imagination in the same way as a kid. :-)
Re: Profile Evaluation Request - PT MBA &nbs [#permalink] 14 Apr 2018, 15:26
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