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Seeking a Profile Evaluation (for Fall 2016 entry)? Please POST HERE

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Joined: 24 Nov 2015
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New post 26 Nov 2015, 04:39
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In an effort to
(1) reduce the number of posts on profile evaluation and
(2) prevent forum contributors from giving the same information multiple times for each individual applicant,
please post all profile evaluations to this thread. The information given by forum contributors is often overlapping. In preparation for the future application cycle 2015 - 2016.

To help facilitate advice forum members can provide, please provide as much of the information below you feel comfortable sharing. Being more specific will help forum members give you more specific advice:

---------

Test Scores (GMAT/GRE):
(Note: It often helps a lot more if you list the percentiles each of your raw/composite scores are associated with)
Undegrad GPA:
Graduate GPA:
Research Experience:
Teaching Experience:
Work Experience:

Concentration Applying to:
Number of programs planned to apply to:
Dream Schools:

What made you want to pursue a PhD:

Concerns you have about your profile:

Any additional specific questions you may have:

---------

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New post 26 Nov 2015, 10:27
I was being a bit coy, waiting for some others to post their evaluation requests instead of jumping onto my own post. But since nobody has yet, so let me try that elusive initiative and humility, and ask for advice.

Test Scores (GMAT): 770 (IR: 8, 92 percentile; Quant: 50, 87 percentile; Verbal: 45, 99 percentile)
Undegrad GPA: No GPA. Bachelor's in Business Administration. Middling Indian university. Rank #1 in class.
Graduate 1 GPA: No GPA. Master's in Business Economics. Top 5 Indian university. Rank #1 in Information Systems major.
Graduate 2 GPA: No GPA. MBA. Top 20 US b-school. Many "distinction" grades. No Dean's list.
Research Experience: None. RA for a 3-4 subjects during MBA. Acknowledged as RA in a paper published in Marketing Science, and an unpublished paper.
Teaching Experience: 3-4 subjects as TA during MBA
Work Experience: 9 years post-MBA, management consulting and product management

Concentration Applying to: Strategy, Management, or Innovation (depending on school)
Number of programs planned to apply to: 10-12
Dream Schools: Stanford, Harvard, Wharton

What made you want to pursue a PhD: the concept of working on interesting ideas appeals to me

Concerns you have about your profile: Age (38), lack of research experience

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Joined: 12 Mar 2017
Posts: 5

Kudos [?]: 5 [0], given: 2

Location: India
Anup: Patel
Concentration: Strategy, Economics
GPA: 3
WE: Education (Education)
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New post 29 Apr 2017, 15:44
Greetings. Albeit, i am viewing this post late, as i have recently joined the forum. Can you please help evaluate my profile, will be great to hear back on the profile weaknesses.

Test Scores (GMAT): Yet to take the test
Undegrad GPA: Engineering Graduate...2.9 GPA.
Graduate 1 GPA: Masters in Aerospace ... 3 GPA.
Graduate 2 GPA: PGD Industrial Engineering (equivalent to MBA) ... 3 GPA.
Research Experience: 2 years as a Masters student at Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay.
Teaching Experience: None, but a corporate trainer with different Org's that i have worked with, overall 900 hours of teaching experience in Lean and 6-Sigma, a certified Black-Belt and Master Black Belt in Lean & 6-Sigma.
Work Experience: 14 years post-MBA, Consulting, Project & Program Management. International travels to UK, US, Manila/Cebu on Consulting assignments.

Concentration Applying to: Strategy Management, Entrepreneurship, and Innovation
Number of programs planned to apply to: 5-6
Dream Schools: MIT, Stanford, Harvard, HEC Paris

What made you want to pursue a PhD: individual entrepreneurial drive, No Boss, Depth and width of research that can be done

Concerns you have about your profile: Age (40), lesser or few years in research domain

Thanks and awaiting your response.

Best, Anup

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Joined: 03 Feb 2016
Posts: 49

Kudos [?]: 18 [0], given: 1

Location: Brazil
Concentration: Marketing
GMAT 1: 750 Q49 V42
GPA: 3
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New post 02 May 2017, 08:06
Considering the schools you're aiming for, you better have an extremely good GMAT score. About 750, I'd say.

Even for a stellar applicant, odds are not good if you apply to only 5-6 programs. The average number is about double that. Please remember that PhD is much more competitive than MBAs, for example. A school usually accepts only 2 or 3 students for a given concentration.

Your GPAs do not seem great. That by itself may kill your chances at the very top schools. By the way, can you explain why those are your dream schools? It seems you are moved much more by reputation or ranking than by research fit. Ok, I also applied to several of those top schools, but you should check if those schools do the exact type of research you are interested in.

Very little research experience. Most applicants have a Masters. If that's the only result you can show, it will be hard to show you're among the 2 best among hundreds of applicants. Schools like Stanford probably can easily find applicants who have real research experience (paper presentations, work as research assistant).

Your strongest characteristic seems to be work experience. Unfortunately, most PhD programs are not really interested in work experience. For some, it may be held against you. You should explain how your work experience would help with academic research.

You wrote nothing about Letters of Recommendation. Do you think you can get strong letters from professors who can attent to your potential as future academic researcher? That could help to compensate weaknesses.

I don't see why individual entrepreneurial drive is a reason to pursue a PhD. That gives the impression you prefer to work in industry instead of academia, and so it's exactly the opposite of what schools are usually looking for.

Not wanting to have a boss also does not seem to be a good reason to pursue a PhD. Specially if you consider that a PhD is very similar to a job, and that the professor who will be evaluating your profile is probably going to be your boss for 4-5 years if you get accepted. If you want no boss, why a potential boss would hire you to be his/her assistant?

PhD studies are usually much more related to depth than width. Maybe you can explain that in a conving way, but so far it seems you'd have conflicting goals during a PhD. And why depth or width is important to you? And why you couldn't get that depth and width in some other fashion, instead of a PhD?

I don't think your concerns are the biggest issues here.

Ok, there are schools which may discriminate against people of your age. But there are lots of people around your age getting into great PhD programs. I'm 44 years old, by the way.

I applied and was accepted by a PhD program in Marketing, even if my experience was much more related to Finance. So, if you have less years in your desired concentration, that by itself may not be a big problem. But you also should have a great explanation about why you are changing fields now.

Right now, it seems to me that uou don't know much about PhD in general and the application process. It's fine, we all go through the process.

Please check my blog. There I address several issued I pointed here in greater detail.
_________________

http://myphdtales.blogspot.com.br/

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New post 25 May 2017, 06:34
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I'm from India with Bachelor (gpa:8.2/10)and Masters degree in metallurgical engineering and Material science(gpa:8.9/10).
I'm 28 yrs old with 1 year experience in technology excellence department at an integrated steel plant and since last 3 years I have been working as Assistant Professor, teaching undergraduate metallurgy and Material science courses.
I'm appearing for GMAT in October and confident of scoring 720+. I am very interested in pursuing a ph.d in following areas: sustainable management, environmental accounting, business policies, operations management.
I really need to assess my profile in regard to its appeal to admission commities.
Other than few management courses, I don't have any business experience. I've enrolled for few edx courses hoping they would add some appeal and exhibit interest. Kindly let me know what kind of aim I should set and if my profile can persuade commities into admitting me into their business ph.d. programme.
I'll be applying to iim's in india as well as international universities.
Thanks and regards.

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Joined: 03 Feb 2016
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Location: Brazil
Concentration: Marketing
GMAT 1: 750 Q49 V42
GPA: 3
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New post 25 May 2017, 11:06
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Well, you know a PhD is a research program, right? And I see nothing about research in your profile. No experience with research, no research interests and motivation, no letters of recommendation from professors who can attest to your potential as a researcher, and so on.

A GMAT over 720 may help, of course, but at last for good PhD programs in the US a score like that is not unusual to find from applicants. I'm not even from India (a country with many applicants with high scores) and my GMAt score is 750. Even so, I only got one offer out of the 20 applications I sent. GMAT is important, but far from being the most important thing admissions are looking for in a PhD applicant.

First, we really have to know what are your research interests. Writing a list of subjects like "sustainable management, environmental accounting, business policies, operations management" will not help very much. What kind of research do you want to do that is related to sustainable management, for example? Then, we have to know why you want to do that kind of research, how much you do know about that kind of research, how prepared you are to conduct that kind of research. If you did a few edx courses about, for example, some programming language like SAS or R because you've seem that sustainable management researchers use SAS or R, you can try to show the edx courses that you know about that kind of research and is getting ready for it at least.

Of course you don't need to have all that is necessary to be a sustainable management researcher. If you did have, you probably wouldn't need a PhD. But to apply to a PhD without anything about research is really the opposite of what they want.
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New post 25 May 2017, 21:13
BrazilianPhD wrote:
Well, you know a PhD is a research program, right? And I see nothing about research in your profile. No experience with research, no research interests and motivation, no letters of recommendation from professors who can attest to your potential as a researcher, and so on.

A GMAT over 720 may help, of course, but at last for good PhD programs in the US a score like that is not unusual to find from applicants. I'm not even from India (a country with many applicants with high scores) and my GMAt score is 750. Even so, I only got one offer out of the 20 applications I sent. GMAT is important, but far from being the most important thing admissions are looking for in a PhD applicant.

First, we really have to know what are your research interests. Writing a list of subjects like "sustainable management, environmental accounting, business policies, operations management" will not help very much. What kind of research do you want to do that is related to sustainable management, for example? Then, we have to know why you want to do that kind of research, how much you do know about that kind of research, how prepared you are to conduct that kind of research. If you did a few edx courses about, for example, some programming language like SAS or R because you've seem that sustainable management researchers use SAS or R, you can try to show the edx courses that you know about that kind of research and is getting ready for it at least.

Of course you don't need to have all that is necessary to be a sustainable management researcher. If you did have, you probably wouldn't need a PhD. But to apply to a PhD without anything about research is really the opposite of what they want.


I know that PhD is a research program, and I do have decent research background. As said, I have B.Tech and M.Tech in Metallurgical Engineering and Material Science, so I have a research thesis for each degree which involved work at one of the best research labs in India. I have two international publications, plus have been guiding student research projects (as a faculty) since last three years (if that counts). I do have recommendation letters from my professors and research guides.

Regarding my research interests, I am interested in:
1) Sustainable Management or Environmental Accounting in the context of metallurgical industries - iron and steel plants and non-ferrous metal industries. Some of the key research interest areas would be evaluation of alternative technologies, highlighting inconsistencies in current environmental accounting and reporting techniques, impact of environmental policies on global markets (in terms of competitiveness and profitability of operations)
2) Business Policies or Business Strategy with focus on metallurgical industries and their performance in years/decades ahead taking into account continuously changing environmental regulations, and other projected constraints in terms of human and social reforms (especially in developing countries).

Regarding the GMAT score, I sincerely hope I get 750+ score but since I haven't given the exam yet, I am trying not to overreach and evaluating what my options can be with a realistic score 720.

Thanks for your reply, I hope you can suggest options based on these extra details.

Regards

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New post 25 May 2017, 23:12
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All right, now it looks like a PhD application profile.

Most applicants have bachelors and masters degrees, with corresponding thesis. I think what will really set you apart here is that you have two publications. Few applicants have that. Have you presented your papers in any academic event?

The professors who will write your letters of recommendation do research related to the subjects you intend to research? If that's the case, that's also something that could be of great advantage. Because in that case, their letters can be very strong for admissions.

Your interests are very different from mine, so I may very wrong here. But it seems you are talking about several different kinds of PhD. When you say "reporting technics", it looks a lot like a PhD in Accounting. When you say "Operations Management", I think that's a PhD in Operations. When you say "environmental policies on global markets", I think that's not a PhD in any kind of business concentration. Maybe a PhD in Economics, for example. The PhD in Sustainable Development from Columbia, for example, is from the School of International and Public Affairs, not business school.

Given the diversity of interests, I don't know if you plan to apply to different kinds of PhD. If that's the case, maybe you should focus on the GRE instead of GMAT. Because business schools usually accept both the GMAT and the GRE, but other kinds of schools (like those for PhD in Economics) do not accept the GMAT.

Do you already know the names of some of the most important researchers whose work is related to your interests? If you the names, we can see if they really are in business schools or not. And, if they are in business schools, which concentration.
_________________

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New post 12 Jun 2017, 03:25
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kruger1389. I read both your posts and have to say that your second post seems more specific in what you are looking for, but still you need to get more specific. BrazilianPhD has provided some very good feedback. I would like to add some more info that might be of help to you.

Firstly, it is great that you have already identified areas of interest: 1) Sustainable Management or 2)Environmental Accounting or 3) Business Policies or 4)Business Strategy, all of these in the context of metallurgical industries.

Whilst this is a good starting point, you have to realise that these areas are extremely broad in their scope and you need to fine tune your focus area even further.
For example, if you take "sustainable management" in google scholar, you get over 2 million hits of research content. Now imagine how many more research articles you can find if you typed all four topics! Even if you specifically search for areas related to metallurgical engineering, you will end up with 1000s of research literature, so you first need to narrow your focus.

I will use an analogy that one of my PhD supervisors mentioned to me when I started my PhD application process many years ago and hope this can give some context.

Imagine that, for example, you have decided to do a PhD on India. Now you have already shortlisted India from 100s of countries in the world, so this is a good starting point. But this is only level 1 and for a PhD you need to get more specific.
You need to further identify EXACTLY which state (level 2), which city (level 3), which suburb (level 4), which street (level 5) and so on, to focus on your research. Only then then can you clearly state what is going to be the focus area of your PhD.

Currently, the four topics you mentioned are just level 1. Once you read some existing research, and identify your focus areas down to levels 4 or level 5, you will automatically find some gaps in existing research. Then you can identify your research area and can justify to the university how you can add value with your own research.

As a bonus, this process will automatically help you in finding which universities and scholars are more active in the specific area of research. Naturally, you will be more successful by focusing your efforts on those specific universities and focus on their admission requirements (GMAT, GPA etc).

Hope it helps!

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New post 19 Aug 2017, 15:57
My Academic Profile:

Program of interest: Finance

Research interests: Asset Pricing (Theoretical and Empirical)

Schools: I have a list of 28 schools I am applying to. They include good schools such as NYU, Northwestern, Duke, Cornell, high second tier (USC Marshall, Rochester, Washington Foster and Washington Olin, Texas Austin, LSE, LBS) as well as lower second tier (Boston College, Minnesota, Wisconsin, etc). I am not fussy, I would accept top 40 or top 50 but aiming for top 20-30.

My GRE score was:

Q164 (87th percentile)

V163 (93rd percentile)

AW: 5.0 (93rd percentile)

Undergrad: Undergraduate Honours Degree in Finance and Econometrics (2nd in cohort) from a global top 50 university

GPA: First Class Honours (translates roughly to 4.0 in US system)

Grad: MSc in Finance and Economics at London School of Economics (August 2017-June 2018)

Research Experience: Working Paper on asset pricing theory. Expect to publish in next few years. Also worked as an RA for a research institute tied to the university

Teaching Experience: Teaching Assistant for an introductory corporate finance course at undergraduate level. I was an academic tutor for 10 classes a week, performed marking duties and exam supervision when necessary. Teaching evaluation was 5.18/6.00 which is well above average

I am hoping if I get good marks at LSE and hence can get a top reference (I already have 3 referees from my local university), I can make a good fist of my application in spite of grad score. I am happy to go top 40 or top 50 but I will also aim for top 20 and 30. Hopefully I can get a bite somewhere.

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