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Split GPA/GMAT Profile Evaluation

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Intern
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Joined: 11 Jul 2017
Posts: 8
Split GPA/GMAT Profile Evaluation  [#permalink]

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New post 11 Jul 2017, 12:38
Thanks in advance for taking a look at my profile - I'm pretty new at the MBA admissions world and am just looking for some advice as to what range of schools I should plan to apply to for Round 1.

High Level:
27 years old, White male, US citizen
Education: Elite US University (Top 7), Double Major in Biological Sciences and American History, minor in Chemistry

Stats:
GPA: 3.25
GMAT: 770 (46V, 50Q), 6.0 AWA, 7 IR

Work Experience:
- 5 years working for a consulting/business process management firm that supports public sector healthcare programs in the US. The firm played a large role in helping to implement health care reform in the US and supports state and federal clients that administer large public insurance and other entitlement programs
- Have been promoted twice and served in a number of different roles. Started out in the operations/consulting unit, working with individual clients to address their operational issues or stand up new programs. Upon last promotion was selected to lead own team (though now only three analysts currently) focused on identifying adjacent markets and new strategic partnerships for the firm's business in the domestic (US) health space
- Have had a number of key accomplishments, including proposing the acquisition of a competitor, pitching the idea to executives at my company, and helping lead the due diligence and integration process once the deal was approved. I received a corporate award for this that's only given to around 15 people a year worldwide out of a total of 18,000 employees

Extracurriculars - was drum major of the marching band at fairly large school (>100 members in band) and also led pep band for all men's and women's basketball games. Was also active in a fraternity, with a couple of minor leadership roles. Currently on alumni board for the group

Philanthropy - was philanthropy chair of my fraternity for a year, and worked for a summer for an environmental protection-focused not-for-profit. After graduation I work with the corporate foundation my company runs, meeting community groups and attending dinners/events to present.

Essays/Recs - this post nonwithstanding I think I can pull together excellent essays, and plan to start writing as soon as applications are available. I also believe that my recommendations will be excellent, based on their feedback on my performance/a draft that one of them let me read.

MBA Goals - move into strategy and operations consulting for the health care sector, particularly for clients/companies that interact with the programs that I've supported in the past (Medicaid, Medicare, etc.)

I imagine my GPA will be a big stumbling block, as I was below the mean at my university (though I suppose the hard science degree might help a bit). I don't have a great way of explaining it away unfortunately, though I do think my strong job performance and recommendations will get across that I can handle the work. I did a lot better on the GMAT than I expected too (though I studied for like 6 months). I'm really just looking to see what range of schools I should apply to - with my GPA are Harvard/Stanford/Wharton out of the question or should I be a bit less pessimistic? Any help at all would be much appreciated - thank you in advance for your time and for taking a look at this
Vantage Point MBA Co-Founder
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Joined: 19 Apr 2016
Posts: 202
Schools: CBS '13 (A)
Re: Split GPA/GMAT Profile Evaluation  [#permalink]

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New post 18 Jul 2017, 09:44
Hi there,

Congrats on getting started with the MBA application process! It’s a long road but one well worth it in my opinion and experience! In general, I think you have a pretty good grasp on the relative strengths and weaknesses of your profile. It sounds like your work experience has provided some pretty unique opportunities for leadership and impact in a rapidly evolving industry. Those experiences will certainly help you stand out in a competitive applicant pool. Now as you think about your career goals and your desire to move into management consulting (vs. implementation) in the healthcare space, the key to your story will be “why”, and more importantly, what you hope to achieve in healthcare in the long-run (i.e. your vision for how you can make an impact). This will be best conveyed in your essays, so plan to spend a lot of time on those.

In terms of your GPA, it is what it is, so your best bet is to focus on how to mitigate it. My co-founder wrote this great article on ways to offset a low GPA, in case you’re up for some further reading: How To Overcome A Low GPA. In general, you’ll want to address it in the optional essay and point to all the reasons why it’s not indicative of your ability to handle the rigor of the MBA curriculum. Your GMAT speaks for itself but you can also consider taking an additional course or two (MBAmath.com offers some great flexible options) if you did poorly in a specific subject in undergrad.

The last thing that stands out to me is your lighter extra-curriculars since undergrad given that the top schools are looking for students who are well-rounded and have exhibited leadership both in and out of work. That’s something that probably warrants a deeper conversation but just something to keep in mind.

So all that goes to say that I don’t think H/S/W is out of the question for you but they will be tough. (Wharton possibly less so since you have a strong story around healthcare and the HCM would be a great fit.) I don’t recommend putting all your eggs in one basket with those 3. I would suggest picking a couple of reach schools that are your dream and then also considering some other top programs that will be a great fit but aren’t such wild cards for you. Bottom line: definitely apply but also hedge your bets.

I hope that helps! Let me know if you have any further questions!

Best,
Melody
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Re: Split GPA/GMAT Profile Evaluation   [#permalink] 18 Jul 2017, 09:44
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