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Profile Evaluation - SE.Asian female|Big4 M&A|700GMAT

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Joined: 22 Oct 2018
Posts: 8
GMAT 1: 700 Q47 V38
Profile Evaluation - SE.Asian female|Big4 M&A|700GMAT  [#permalink]

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New post 17 Oct 2019, 21:42
Profile Evaluation - SE.Asian female|Big4 M&A|700GMAT

Hi I'm a 27 year old Southeast Asian female planning on applying during the R2 window next year.

- Born and bred in Singapore (Chinese ethnicity)
- 4 years M&A experience (valuations/corporate finance/business restructuring) in Big 4 (think Deloitte, PwC, etc)
- Ranked as High Performer in recent performance review
- 4.05/5 undergrad GPA Accounting and Business Law Nanyang Technological University (#12 globally) - WES conversion (3.3~3.7/4.0)
- 700 GMAT Q47 V38 IR4 AWA6 (first attempt)
- Central bank scholarship holder (70% of fees), req to work in the finance sector in Singapore post-MBA
- References from Big 4 Corporate Finance Partner and Previous Big 4 Senior Manager
- Volunteering at YMCA (Vietnam, Myanmar trip), high school math tutoring part-time for 5 years
- No international work experience, but an avid solo traveller and couchsurfing host (hosting travellers/strangers at my place)

Target schools: Wharton, Booth, NYU Stern, Columbia, Yale, UC Berkeley
Backup: Tuck, Cornell, UCLA

-What would be things above I should highlight in my application (that would excite the adcoms)?
-What are my chances at my target schools?
-Will being a Southeast Asian female help/hurt my chances?
-What would be a target GMAT score based on my profile?

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Joined: 30 Nov 2009
Posts: 6500
Location: Chicago, IL
Schools: Brown University, Harvard Business School
Re: Profile Evaluation - SE.Asian female|Big4 M&A|700GMAT  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Oct 2019, 19:16
HI there, thanks for reaching out! Do you mean you don't to apply until fall of 2020? Or that you want to apply this year to start in fall of 2020? Most top schools wants applicants with 3-5 years of experience upon matriculation, and if you apply this year you'll be right at the top of that band when you start -- whereas if you wait another year you're going to start to exceed the average, which will start to put you at a disadvantage (and will also making reapplying extremely difficult if you don't end up getting in since at that point you'd be at 7 years upon matriculation).

In terms of your candidacy, it will help a bit that you are a SE Asian female from Singapore. The adcoms at your target schools get loads of Chinese applicants but not as many from Singapore. Your work experience looks solid & I'm assuming you have some strong accomplishments under your belt. The adcom wants applicants who have driven measurable impact at work, ideally with quantifiable results. It's hard to tell if you have leadership experience from what you shared here but that's a critical component of an application for a top school as well so that will be a factor to consider in gauging your competitiveness. To answer your first question, it's hard to say exactly what you should highlight in your essays without knowing more about you. That's definitely the type of strategic direction we give our clients, but that's after a thorough deep dive into their material so we can really identify & articulate the unique value prop that we want to convey across their apps.

In terms of your chances at your target schools, your GMAT is currently on the low end for all of them so you'd ideally want to improve that to the 720-740 range if possible, especially since a 3.3 GPA is on the low end (wasn't totally sure why you'd named a range of 3.3-3.7). If your work accomplishments, leadership experience & essays/LORs are incredibly strong, these top schools MIGHT be wiling to overlook the below average GMAT/GPA but generally speaking you want to at least hit & ideally exceed the averages. So if possible, I'd invest some more time to try to improve that GMAT score in time for R2 apps.

In terms of LORs, sounds like you've got some good recommenders lined up but honestly the seniority/title of the recommender really doesn't matter all that much. What DOES matter is that you ideally have direct managers (including a current one if possible) who can speak to your work with specifics. The adcom isn't going to take their word for how great you are. Every point of praise needs to be backed up with a concrete example, which is why a very senior person is not always the best choice (since they typically have not worked as closely with you). If these folks can do that, great. If not, I'd keep that in mind in choosing some recommenders who can.

I hope that helps! Definitely reach out to us if you'd like some more targeted direction. If you email Claudia at she can set you up with a free consultation with one of our MBA consultants who can take a look at your resume & give you some more detailed thoughts on the strength of your candidacy.
Jon Frank
Founder, Admissionado


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