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# Sloan (MIT) Class of 2016 Calling all applicants

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BSchool Forum Moderator
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Re: Sloan (MIT) Class of 2016 Calling all applicants [#permalink]

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24 Sep 2013, 09:56
Jamon wrote:
Just submitted! Without the OPTIONAL essay. I was simply telling you what a friend of mine who is very close told me, so no need to try to prove me wrong.

There is a need - so others have the facts in mind before deciding whether or not to heed your advice.

Good luck.

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Manager
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Re: Sloan (MIT) Class of 2016 Calling all applicants [#permalink]

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24 Sep 2013, 10:07
Well, except my sources are very reliable. We shall see !!

Anyway, my main point was, no- the optional essay is not required and MIT is a "get to the point" kind of school. They aren't fluffy and care about your feelings or personality the way Stanford or Kellogg does

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BSchool Forum Moderator
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Re: Sloan (MIT) Class of 2016 Calling all applicants [#permalink]

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24 Sep 2013, 10:12
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Jamon wrote:
Well, except my sources are very reliable. We shall see !!

Anyway, my main point was, no- the optional essay is not required and MIT is a "get to the point" kind of school. They aren't fluffy and care about your feelings or personality the way Stanford or Kellogg does

It's true that the optional essay is not required, hence the word "optional."

Your second point is incorrect. MIT does care about your personality. That is why they created the optional essay: "...show us anything you believe is essential to know about yourself, that may not necessarily be reflected in the rest of the application. The Optional Information section offers you this opportunity; it’s your time to get creative and distinguish yourself from the other applicants!"

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Sloan (MIT) Class of 2016 Calling all applicants [#permalink]

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24 Sep 2013, 10:14
1
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Jamon wrote:
Well, except my sources are very reliable. We shall see !!

Anyway, my main point was, no- the optional essay is not required and MIT is a "get to the point" kind of school. They aren't fluffy and care about your feelings or personality the way Stanford or Kellogg does
Jamon, we have to agree with missxmelon on this - the MIT adcom has stated publicly (see this video by the adcom http://mitsloanadmissions.com/2013/09/2 ... nal-essay/ ) and in their info sessions over the past year that a) they want to get a fuller picture of applicants, including non-professional stuff like hobbies and interests, and b) that while you're right, the MIT Optional Info isn't "required", the adcom strongly encourages that applicants take advantage of it.

EssaySnark
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Re: Sloan (MIT) Class of 2016 Calling all applicants [#permalink]

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24 Sep 2013, 10:24
If you are a dime a dozen kind of candidate, then yes I agree. The optional essay is a great way to "differentiate" yourself. But if your essay is strong and you have crafted essays that convey both your personality and goals, then I strongly disagree that the optional essay should be put to use. You aren't going to get accepted because you make some PPT about your basket weaving that you do while visiting nursing home on weekends.

Thanks for the input essay snark. I do see the benefits of an optional essay. But I also faile to see your admission chances increasing by trying to impress them with some useless (interesting, nevertheless) hobby that you enjoy.

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Current Student
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Re: Sloan (MIT) Class of 2016 Calling all applicants [#permalink]

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24 Sep 2013, 10:27
Submitted.

Like many others, GPA on 4.00 scale wasn't showing up on the PDF proof.

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Re: Sloan (MIT) Class of 2016 Calling all applicants [#permalink]

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24 Sep 2013, 10:40
Jamon wrote:
If you are a dime a dozen kind of candidate, then yes I agree. The optional essay is a great way to "differentiate" yourself. But if your essay is strong and you have crafted essays that convey both your personality and goals, then I strongly disagree that the optional essay should be put to use. You aren't going to get accepted because you make some PPT about your basket weaving that you do while visiting nursing home on weekends.

Thanks for the input essay snark. I do see the benefits of an optional essay. But I also faile to see your admission chances increasing by trying to impress them with some useless (interesting, nevertheless) hobby that you enjoy.
OMG we so have to disagree with this -- if you are doing basket weaving during your nursing home visits, we TOTALLY hope you'll tell the adcom about it - THAT would be seriously unique!!!!!!!!!!

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BSchool Forum Moderator
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Re: Sloan (MIT) Class of 2016 Calling all applicants [#permalink]

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24 Sep 2013, 10:48
2
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Jamon wrote:
If you are a dime a dozen kind of candidate, then yes I agree. The optional essay is a great way to "differentiate" yourself. But if your essay is strong and you have crafted essays that convey both your personality and goals, then I strongly disagree that the optional essay should be put to use. You aren't going to get accepted because you make some PPT about your basket weaving that you do while visiting nursing home on weekends.

Thanks for the input essay snark. I do see the benefits of an optional essay. But I also faile to see your admission chances increasing by trying to impress them with some useless (interesting, nevertheless) hobby that you enjoy.

I don't even...

Yes, you can be accepted because you differentiated yourself through the optional essay.

Yes, you can increase your admission chances by properly conveying a hobby you enjoy.

Obviously, it is not a guarantee.

Kudos [?]: 92 [2], given: 24

Manager
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Re: Sloan (MIT) Class of 2016 Calling all applicants [#permalink]

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24 Sep 2013, 11:12
Ward, this goes to show we need more of you here. . I have already submitted my application without the additional transcripts. I mentioned it in the optional essay. Hopefully the admissions committee take my word for it.
Deacow. If you have took my word and not submitted the additional transcript I am so sorry for misleading.
Ward2012 wrote:
randomwalk wrote:
deacoW wrote:
I built an alternative transcript, but am not sure where on the application to reflect it. In the education section it gives you extra space for other Degrees earned, so I'm not sure if that is an appropriate place to put it. I've uploaded the transcript but I'm not sure what else to do.

Thanks

Deacow, I don't think you can do that. The instructions clearly mention that you should upload only transcripts that contribute towards a degree. I would mention about the alternate transcript and the grades in the optional essay and leave it there.

I just noticed this post. Actually this isn't right. I agree that the instructions on the application form state that only work counting towards a degree should be listed. But I emailed the Sloan Admissions office, and they told me to list any extra courses I took in the application form and upload my transcripts.

Posted from my mobile device

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Current Student
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Re: Sloan (MIT) Class of 2016 Calling all applicants [#permalink]

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24 Sep 2013, 12:49
randomwalk wrote:
Ward, this goes to show we need more of you here. . I have already submitted my application without the additional transcripts. I mentioned it in the optional essay. Hopefully the admissions committee take my word for it.
Deacow. If you have took my word and not submitted the additional transcript I am so sorry for misleading.
Ward2012 wrote:
randomwalk wrote:

Deacow, I don't think you can do that. The instructions clearly mention that you should upload only transcripts that contribute towards a degree. I would mention about the alternate transcript and the grades in the optional essay and leave it there.

I just noticed this post. Actually this isn't right. I agree that the instructions on the application form state that only work counting towards a degree should be listed. But I emailed the Sloan Admissions office, and they told me to list any extra courses I took in the application form and upload my transcripts.

Posted from my mobile device

And I'm very sorry for not noticing this post before. You may want to email the Admissions office to see if you can add your transcripts to your file (it's kind of MIT's fault for being unclear.) I've interacted with the Admissions office at Sloan quite a bit because I was waitlisted last year. I found that they are very friendly, and will help you if they can.

Of course, it would be best if the instructions on the form itself were a little more clear. I can see why there was confusion. I had the same question, which is why I asked the Office.

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Re: Sloan (MIT) Class of 2016 Calling all applicants [#permalink]

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24 Sep 2013, 13:51
Submitted. First submission this year!

And I did fill in the optional essay, talking about a hobby I have had for the last 8 years.

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Re: Sloan (MIT) Class of 2016 Calling all applicants [#permalink]

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24 Sep 2013, 20:38
Ward2012 wrote:
And I'm very sorry for not noticing this post before. You may want to email the Admissions office to see if you can add your transcripts to your file (it's kind of MIT's fault for being unclear.) I've interacted with the Admissions office at Sloan quite a bit because I was waitlisted last year. I found that they are very friendly, and will help you if they can.

Of course, it would be best if the instructions on the form itself were a little more clear. I can see why there was confusion. I had the same question, which is why I asked the Office.

Ward, you are extremely modest. I wish you all the best with your application.
I have dropped the adcom an email and will repost here if they would let me submit the additional transcripts.

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Manager
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Re: Sloan (MIT) Class of 2016 Calling all applicants [#permalink]

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24 Sep 2013, 20:46
1
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By the way, those of whom applying, the MIT adcom is ok with giving a little bit of leeway, like a few days, for recommenders to submit their letters. One of my recommenders submitted 3 hours after the deadline. They are fine with that. Just had ward mentioned, MIT adcom is really nice and flexible. Check with them directly for extenuating circumstances. They are really warm people.

Last edited by randomwalk on 24 Sep 2013, 21:12, edited 1 time in total.

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Manager
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Re: Sloan (MIT) Class of 2016 Calling all applicants [#permalink]

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24 Sep 2013, 20:54
randomwalk wrote:
By the way, those whom applying, the MIT adcom is ok with giving a little bit of leeway, like a few days, for recommenders to submit their letters. One of my recommenders submitted 3 hours after the deadline. They are fine with that. Just had ward mentioned, MIT adcom is really nice and flexible. Check with them directly for extenuating circumstances. They are really warm people.

Great to know. Thanks for the info, randomwalk ! !

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Director
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Re: Sloan (MIT) Class of 2016 Calling all applicants [#permalink]

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24 Sep 2013, 21:14
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For what it's worth, last year I did submit an optional essay and it was about a personal topic.

Edit: I forgot to mention that the topic of that essay was specifically brought up in my interview, too.

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Current Student
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Re: Sloan (MIT) Class of 2016 Calling all applicants [#permalink]

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24 Sep 2013, 22:56
randomwalk wrote:
Ward2012 wrote:
And I'm very sorry for not noticing this post before. You may want to email the Admissions office to see if you can add your transcripts to your file (it's kind of MIT's fault for being unclear.) I've interacted with the Admissions office at Sloan quite a bit because I was waitlisted last year. I found that they are very friendly, and will help you if they can.

Of course, it would be best if the instructions on the form itself were a little more clear. I can see why there was confusion. I had the same question, which is why I asked the Office.

Ward, you are extremely modest. I wish you all the best with your application.
I have dropped the adcom an email and will repost here if they would let me submit the additional transcripts.

Thanks. I guess, lesson learned: when in doubt, ask the source (i.e., Admissions Office.)

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Current Student
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Re: Sloan (MIT) Class of 2016 Calling all applicants [#permalink]

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24 Sep 2013, 23:07
missxmelon wrote:
Jamon wrote:
If you are a dime a dozen kind of candidate, then yes I agree. The optional essay is a great way to "differentiate" yourself. But if your essay is strong and you have crafted essays that convey both your personality and goals, then I strongly disagree that the optional essay should be put to use. You aren't going to get accepted because you make some PPT about your basket weaving that you do while visiting nursing home on weekends.

Thanks for the input essay snark. I do see the benefits of an optional essay. But I also faile to see your admission chances increasing by trying to impress them with some useless (interesting, nevertheless) hobby that you enjoy.

I don't even...

Yes, you can be accepted because you differentiated yourself through the optional essay.

Yes, you can increase your admission chances by properly conveying a hobby you enjoy.

Obviously, it is not a guarantee.

To be diplomatic, I think both sides of this debate about the optional essay are coming at the optional essay from two different perspectives. One side is saying, you don't need it if your other essays are good. Saying you do some hobby is not going to help.

The other side is saying, yes, differentiating yourself will absolutely help.

To me, I think the real point is that that if you are going to talk something that differentiates yourself whether it's a hobby, a philosophy or whatever it is, you have to convey *why* you are telling the Admissions Committee about the thing that differentiates you. In other words, what does your hobby or whatever the thing is say about you? creative? overcoming adversity? leadership? good with people? quick learner? entrepreneurial compassion? etc.

Now if you do something really truly off the wall that no one else does or something really impressive (like you started \$10M business), then the activity itself may be enough. But so many people say things like "i love to travel" or "i love to cook" or "i love basketball" and that's great and it certainly offers more of your personality to the admissions committee. However, what that activity means to you is the real thing that differentiates you, and if you don't tell the AdCom, you may leave them wondering "why is this person telling me this?"

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Re: Sloan (MIT) Class of 2016 Calling all applicants [#permalink]

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24 Sep 2013, 23:42
Ward2012 wrote:
To be diplomatic, I think both sides of this debate about the optional essay are coming at the optional essay from two different perspectives. One side is saying, you don't need it if your other essays are good. Saying you do some hobby is not going to help.

The other side is saying, yes, differentiating yourself will absolutely help.

To me, I think the real point is that that if you are going to talk something that differentiates yourself whether it's a hobby, a philosophy or whatever it is, you have to convey *why* you are telling the Admissions Committee about the thing that differentiates you. In other words, what does your hobby or whatever the thing is say about you? creative? overcoming adversity? leadership? good with people? quick learner? entrepreneurial compassion? etc.

Now if you do something really truly off the wall that no one else does or something really impressive (like you started \$10M business), then the activity itself may be enough. But so many people say things like "i love to travel" or "i love to cook" or "i love basketball" and that's great and it certainly offers more of your personality to the admissions committee. However, what that activity means to you is the real thing that differentiates you, and if you don't tell the AdCom, you may leave them wondering "why is this person telling me this?"

Yes, that's true. That's why I didn't say that "differentiating yourself will absolutely help." I said that it can help. I also specifically said that "properly conveying" a hobby can increase admission chances (vs. instances you mentioned in your post). And while that may be where Jamon was coming from, I took issue with his absolute statements, which were misleading.

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Re: Sloan (MIT) Class of 2016 Calling all applicants [#permalink]

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24 Sep 2013, 23:49
missxmelon wrote:
Ward2012 wrote:
To be diplomatic, I think both sides of this debate about the optional essay are coming at the optional essay from two different perspectives. One side is saying, you don't need it if your other essays are good. Saying you do some hobby is not going to help.

The other side is saying, yes, differentiating yourself will absolutely help.

To me, I think the real point is that that if you are going to talk something that differentiates yourself whether it's a hobby, a philosophy or whatever it is, you have to convey *why* you are telling the Admissions Committee about the thing that differentiates you. In other words, what does your hobby or whatever the thing is say about you? creative? overcoming adversity? leadership? good with people? quick learner? entrepreneurial compassion? etc.

Now if you do something really truly off the wall that no one else does or something really impressive (like you started \$10M business), then the activity itself may be enough. But so many people say things like "i love to travel" or "i love to cook" or "i love basketball" and that's great and it certainly offers more of your personality to the admissions committee. However, what that activity means to you is the real thing that differentiates you, and if you don't tell the AdCom, you may leave them wondering "why is this person telling me this?"

Yes, that's true. That's why I didn't say that "differentiating yourself will absolutely help." I said that it can help. I also specifically said that "properly conveying" a hobby can increase admission chances (vs. instances you mentioned in your post). And while that may be where Jamon was coming from, I took issue with his absolute statements, which were misleading.

missxmelon--i was not referring to you specifically. I was talking about the corpus of comments from everyone who has commented.

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BSchool Forum Moderator
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Re: Sloan (MIT) Class of 2016 Calling all applicants [#permalink]

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24 Sep 2013, 23:50
Ward2012 wrote:

missxmelon--i was not referring to you specifically. I was talking about the corpus of comments from everyone who has commented.

Sorry - I assumed you were referring to me because you quoted my previous post.

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Re: Sloan (MIT) Class of 2016 Calling all applicants   [#permalink] 24 Sep 2013, 23:50

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