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Profile review, asian male with midium GMAT

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Joined: 08 Jan 2019
Posts: 39
Location: China
Schools: CBS '22 (II)
GMAT 1: 740 Q50 V40
GPA: 3.9
Profile review, asian male with midium GMAT  [#permalink]

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New post 10 Apr 2019, 07:58
Would really appreciate a look at my profile, thx!

Background and nationality: Chinese male, age 26, spent 25 years in China but scored 29/30 on speaking of TOEFL.

Undergrad Information:
-Undergrad: Top2 university in China, double degree: BS in applied mathematics (GPA 2.8/4.0,) and BA in economics (GPA 3.3/4.0)
-Graduate: Top20 east coast graduate school in US, MA in applied economics (GPA 3.9/4.0)

GMAT: 740 (q50 v40 awa5 ir4), will take again soon.

Work experience and leadership: 2.5 yrs at the top investment bank in China, 3.5 yrs at matriculation. I started as a CDO manager and managed securitization projects. Since 2018 my role has been shifting to alternative credit investment. I currently focus on private non-standardized debt investment and CLO equity. It was a good combination for me, because private debt investment trains my soft skills in project management and communication, while CLO equity investment trains my hard skills in quantitative analysis. I also help the macro rates group on investment research projects.
Career highlights are listed as follows:
-Led one of the most complicated securitization deals in the ninth month of my career. Both VP and SVP were taking maternity leaves and the management responsibilities fell on my shoulder. I was in a position to make 80% of all the decisions and to manage lawyers, credit analysts, and interns. I wasn't able to close the deal due to regulation change, but it was still good experience and I learned a lot from it.
-With an intern and a colleague, I developed the investment analytical models and system for consumer credit asset class, opening out group to a trillion dollar market, which is very premature because so few people in China understand the quantitative technology behind it. I made a good impact by replacing traditional investment analytical methodology with 21st century data science. It was a changing point of my career because the project enlightened my ambition in FinTech.
-Did a bunch of digitalization and automation work since I decided to go into FinTech in the future. For example, I built a database wrote a small program to automate the non-standardized debt trading execution and paperwork drafting. It does not involve much leadership experience, but I'd like to think that I made some impact.

Community and others:
-Volunteered at a micro-loan non-profit in senior year of undergrad as a credit analyst.
-Volunteered at a social enterprise that provides consulting service to non-profits. Brokered a large amount of impact investment funding from a tech giant for a small institution based in the poorest town in Yunnan Province.
-Used to be an amateur athlete of 200m sprint.

Post MBA goals:
Long-term: FinTech - robo adviser, hopefully to start my own firm at some point down the road.
Short-term: Either traditional finance or tech firm would make sense in the short term, becasue a solid background in either finance or tech could help a career in FinTech.

Other info:
Low GPA: I'm aware that my undergrad GPA might be a deal breaker. I went to a school that happened to gather all the top mathematical geniuses in China. I enjouyed the challenge, but my GPA inevitably suffered because the courses and exams were specially designed for those guys. I hope my graduate GPA and my work could somehow prove that I'm fully capable of advanced learning.
5 months' gap: I came back to China in Sep 2016 but started working in Feb 2017. The gap was because Chinese firms don't usually do Skype interviews for students abroad and it is very common for Chinese students to attend campus recruitment after they come back from US to China. We actually have a law specifically saying that students who study abroad will maintain legal status of fresh graduates for one more year after they come back.

I'm fully aware that I'm probably in the worst applicant pool of S16, so don't hold back and please strike me with all the hard truth. Thank you!
User avatar
Joined: 30 Nov 2009
Posts: 6449
Location: Chicago, IL
Schools: Brown University, Harvard Business School
Re: Profile review, asian male with midium GMAT  [#permalink]

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New post 10 Apr 2019, 13:17
Honestly, I wouldn't stress too much - the GPA is a challenge but it's not an insurmountable one. A 740 is a solid score that will help compensate. If you can improve your score all the better. Although one the one hand a business-related MA can make it harder to make the argument that you still need the MBA (again, there are ways around this - it's just about making sure you really tell a strong story here), the MA GPA will also help outweigh the undergrad one, as will your work experience. I wouldn't worry too much about the work gap. 5 months is not that long & they know things like that happen. You can just briefly explain it in an optional essay. I'd mention the GPA too - you don't want to just say everyone else was super smart since that will sound like an excuse, but you can mention anything you've improved upon since then (time management, maturity, etc) & point to your MA & your work experience as more representative of your abilities. Some strong LORs will help for sure as well. With a 740 you definitely have a great shot at top 20 US schools - top 10 schools are going to be more in the reach category unless you can improve your GMAT to 760 or 780, but you still have a shot at top 10 for sure. It's going to be critical to ensure your essays are as strong as possible too to differentiate you from a competitive demographic & again to outweigh that GPA. It can definitley be done though! If you'd like to talk through your profile and potential strategy in more detail feel free to reach out to us. Claudia can set you up with a free consultation with one of our MBA consultants! You can reach her at
Jon Frank
Founder, Admissionado


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