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Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog

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HEC Paris Creates New Series of MOOCs for 2015 [#permalink]

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New post 18 Dec 2014, 07:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: HEC Paris Creates New Series of MOOCs for 2015
Capitalizing on the success of its first massive open online courses, HEC Paris has announced it will launch a series of new MOOCs in 2015. They begin with courses on understanding organizations, social entrepreneurship, technology-based start-ups, and corporate finance. The first four are already open for registration, and others will follow later in the year.

Professor Rodolphe Durand teaches ‘Time to Reorganize’, an integrative approach to understanding organizations (termed ‘orgology’ by Durand). It explores how organizations can act strategically to protect or renew a sense of belonging in individuals. This course is offered on Coursera on January 13, 2015.

The second Coursera-platform MOOC  is dedicated to social entrepreneurship, and aims to inspire and help aspiring entrepreneurs who want to make a difference in society. It begins February 24, 2015.

On April 1, 2015, a course co-developed by HEC Paris Affiliate Professor Etienne Krieger and Romain Beaume from École Polytechnique engineering school focuses on how to set up a technology-based start-up. This program will also be offered to Master’s students from HEC Paris and École polytechnique.

Finally, HEC Paris will open the first online Executive Education Certificate program on Corporate Finance, in partnership with First Finance Institute. This certificate offers a comprehensive and practical curriculum in corporate finance targeted to a wide audience, including executives from different backgrounds and sectors.

Two sessions, led by HEC Affiliate Professor Pascal Quiry, will be available: one in French, and another in Mandarin in partnership with Tsinghua University School of Economics and Management.

One year ago, HEC Paris was the first business school in France to launch a massive open online course (MOOC) on Coursera. The success of the 2014 programs has affirmed HEC’s commitment to this innovative educational format.

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

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Interested in a free 30 minute consultation with the Stacy Blackman Team? Sign up here: http://stacyblackman.com/contact

Stacy Blackman | Stacy Blackman Consulting Inc | http://www.StacyBlackman.com | +1 323.934.3936
MBA blogger, US News and Author, The MBA Application Roadmap

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R1 Decisions from Michigan Ross [#permalink]

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New post 19 Dec 2014, 12:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: R1 Decisions from Michigan Ross
Moved by the holiday spirit, Soojin Kwon, MBA admissions director at the University of Michigan Ross School of Business, tapped into her inner poet for her latest blog post announcing the Round 1 admitted student calls she and her team completed Thursday. All decisions are now posted online.

The Michigan Ross MBA admissions officers plan to issue Round 2 interview invitations on January 19th, with interviews  taking place from January 22 to February 23, 2015. Kwon also notes team exercises will happen on campus during that period every Friday and Monday, and a few Saturdays, beginning on January 30th.

For those who cannot make it to campus in Ann Arbor, the Ross School will hold team exercises in Sao Paulo and Delhi on February 7th; Seoul on February 8th; and Shanghai on February 10, 2015.

For applicants planning on submitting in Round 2, the admissions director had some advice to share. The winter break is an ideal time to set up a Café Chat with a current Ross student near you, and Kwon says students are eager to share their experiences with prospective candidates.

Also, she recommends applicants review the admissions webinar from earlier this week, which, in addition to talking about the program, included last-minute application tips and answers to burning questions.



Finally, Kwon urges applicants to make time for doing things they enjoy with the people they care about in the coming weeks. “This will give you better perspective to review your app in early January (before the January 5 deadline) and see if it really reflects who you are and what’s important to you,” she says.

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

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Interested in a free 30 minute consultation with the Stacy Blackman Team? Sign up here: http://stacyblackman.com/contact

Stacy Blackman | Stacy Blackman Consulting Inc | http://www.StacyBlackman.com | +1 323.934.3936
MBA blogger, US News and Author, The MBA Application Roadmap

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Stacy Blackman’s B-School Buzz [#permalink]

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New post 19 Dec 2014, 13:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Stacy Blackman’s B-School Buzz
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Welcome to the end-of-year edition of Stacy Blackman’s B-School Buzz, our periodic check-in with some of the MBA blogosphere’s applicant and student contributors. There was much to celebrate this week as multiple bloggers shared the great news of  getting in to one or more of their Round 1 schools. Congratulations to all, and for those who are waitlisted, don’t lose hope! You’re still in the running, and there are definitely things you can do to manage the waitlist experience.

Two down, one to go—Based in Madrid, Under Prescription was on pins and needles as the time zone difference caused considerable angst while decision calls and emails started coming down. The results so far: in at Tuck School of Business and with a scholarship to boot; and also admitted to MIT Sloan School of Management! A decision from Duke Fuqua is pending, but whatever the case, this is one applicant who feels great knowing he won’t have to worry about Round 2.

Three for threeMy Journey to Business School is about to have the best weekend ever as she celebrates admits to Tepper School of Business, Kellogg School of Management, and UCLA Anderson School of Management. Now it’s decision time, made more complicated by the fact that both Tepper and Anderson are offering scholarships.

A yes and a maybe—If being waitlisted by University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School stung a little, that was surely mitigated by  Top Dog MBA‘s acceptance offer at MIT Sloan School of Management. Since this is his second time at the rodeo—the first included five dings—we can only imagine how fantastic it feels to begin to close this chapter of the journey to b-school.

Another TrifectaFinance Furry is over the moon after receiving admissions offers at all three of the schools she applied to in Round 1: Wharton School, Kellogg, and Chicago Booth School of Business. She says she plans to spend the coming weeks making pros and cons lists, consulting alums and students, and praying for guidance.

To stay waitlisted or no?Naija MBA Gal is facing a tough decision as she contemplates whether to remain on the MIT Sloan waitlist or fully embrace the acceptance from Chicago Booth. Since she admits Booth is her “first love,” is it safe to call it for Chicago? By Monday all should be revealed.

When nerves set inPulling that MBA Trigger is full of good cheer for her fellow MBA bloggers this week as many on the same journey have already received good news. It’s time to focus on that GMAT next week, and keep up the positive energy for the Round 2 deadlines coming up.

Do you have an MBA-centric blog? Want it featured in an upcoming B-School Buzz post? If so, email me at buzz@StacyBlackman.com.

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________

Interested in a free 30 minute consultation with the Stacy Blackman Team? Sign up here: http://stacyblackman.com/contact

Stacy Blackman | Stacy Blackman Consulting Inc | http://www.StacyBlackman.com | +1 323.934.3936
MBA blogger, US News and Author, The MBA Application Roadmap

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Addressing Academic Strengths On MBA Applications [#permalink]

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New post 22 Dec 2014, 07:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Addressing Academic Strengths On MBA Applications
This post originally appeared on Stacy’s “Strictly Business” MBA Blog on U.S.News.com
Hard data points such as test scores and GPAs carry significant weight as business school admissions committees attempt to determine whether an applicant has the chops to handle the quantitative requirements of an MBA program.

While you’ll often hear advice on how to mitigate poor academic performance when applying to business school, it’s also important to take a look at the academic strengths in your undergraduate record and how you might play up those qualities in your application.

[Know how to convince MBA programs you’re a good fit.]

If a candidate had a quantitative-heavy undergraduate course load, obviously he or she should throw the spotlight on that. But business schools don’t want to fill their classes solely with economics and business majors.

Those applicants do fill a fair share of seats, but today the emphasis on diversity of thought means the schools are working hard to attract applicants from a wider variety of academic backgrounds. Often candidates coming from the humanities such as sociology, psychology or political science, are more attractive to the admissions committee than the typical business background peer.

A good application strategy is to show the connections between seemingly unrelated college courses and note how those classes shaped your current career goals.

[Check out three exercises to help MBA applicants develop a personal brand.]

For example, perhaps a history class sparked an interest in a different part of the world, which led to international business pursuits. Or maybe your psychology major prepared you for working well in groups and managing the diverse personalities of a team, as it did for one client of mine who parlayed those characteristics into a strong MBA admissions essay for Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management.

Perhaps all of those science courses fueled a desire to lead a start-up in health care. Dig a little and you may be surprised at how the connections fall into place.

With business as globally focused as it is today, MBA admissions committees are on the lookout for candidates who are fluent in a second or third language, or who have had study-abroad experiences.

We coached one applicant who had double-majored in Spanish so that she could finally have a conversation with her grandmother, who had emigrated to the U.S. from Chile as an adult and had never learned English. That’s something we knew admissions committees would like to hear more about. Business schools are very interested in these qualities, as they indicate a certain level of comfort working with an international cohort.

[Avoid these surprising application mistakes of prospective MBAs.]

Applicants who participated in several extracurricular activities while in college and still managed to maintain a high GPA exhibited excellent time management skills and a dedicated work ethic. And, if a candidate held a leadership position in any of those activities, that shows initiative with a long leadership track record. Admissions committees are impressed if you can commit to something over a long period of time, no matter if it’s a sport or hobby.

MBA programs seek to attract applicants who show curiosity about the wider world, whether through academic, extracurricular or life experiences. As you start thinking about your MBA application strategy, take note of any compelling connections from your college days you can mine from. You never know if those years on the water polo team, the minor in game design or those articles you published in the school newspaper are just the ticket to creating a standout application.

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________

Interested in a free 30 minute consultation with the Stacy Blackman Team? Sign up here: http://stacyblackman.com/contact

Stacy Blackman | Stacy Blackman Consulting Inc | http://www.StacyBlackman.com | +1 323.934.3936
MBA blogger, US News and Author, The MBA Application Roadmap

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Wharton’s Social Impact Initiative Welcomes New Senior Fellow [#permalink]

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New post 22 Dec 2014, 09:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Wharton’s Social Impact Initiative Welcomes New Senior Fellow
Jonathan Greenblatt, founder of Ethos Water and currently Special Assistant to the President and Director of the White House Office of Social Innovation and Civic Participation, will serve as a Senior Fellow at University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School starting in January, the school announced late last week.

A serial social entrepreneur, Greenblatt is considered one of the leading experts in the country on social innovation and shared value. Ethos Water, the premium bottled water that helps children around the world get clean water, was  acquired by Starbucks Coffee in 2005.

While working with the Wharton Social Impact Initiative, Greenblatt is expected to lecture on a number of topics for the remainder of the 2014-2015 academic year, including impact investing, shared value, social entrepreneurship, cross-sector leadership, and nonprofit management and strategy.

Last month, Greenblatt was named as the new national director of the Anti-Defamation League, where his service will begin in July 2015.

“We are delighted to welcome Jonathan to Wharton,” says Geoffrey Garrett, Dean of the Wharton School.  “He brings a unique perspective on innovation and leadership, enriched by a rare combination of experiences at the highest level of government, business and the nonprofit world.  We are excited to have him on campus to work with our students and faculty.”

Jonathon was a classmate and friend of mine at Kellogg School of Management, so I’d also like to extend my personal congratulations to him for this latest recognition his important work has received.

 

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________

Interested in a free 30 minute consultation with the Stacy Blackman Team? Sign up here: http://stacyblackman.com/contact

Stacy Blackman | Stacy Blackman Consulting Inc | http://www.StacyBlackman.com | +1 323.934.3936
MBA blogger, US News and Author, The MBA Application Roadmap

Kudos [?]: 125 [0], given: 0

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First Year HBS Student Debunks 3 Common Preconceptions [#permalink]

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New post 23 Dec 2014, 12:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: First Year HBS Student Debunks 3 Common Preconceptions
People have a lot of preconceived notions about what Harvard Business School is like, much of it good but some of it not so great. I came across an article written by MBA candidate Philip Blackett, which does a bit of HBS myth-busting that I think current and future applicants will appreciate reading.

Myth #1 HBS is Cutthroat
Blackett’s imagination ran wild before he came to Cambridge in August, imagining his future classmates would go out of their way to sabotage the success of their peers. “What I found was the exact opposite,” he writes. “I was most surprised by how tight my 93-person section became and how much we genuinely cared for one another after only a few months.”

This sense of collaboration and closeness extends beyond the section to the whole study body, he adds, noting how touched he felt when fellow students reacted to the Mike Brown and Eric Garner incidents by holding a candlelight vigil. Attending Harvard doesn’t mean you can’t relate to life outside of campus, says Blackett.

Myth #2 You Can’t Learn Finance from Case Studies
He wasn’t the only incoming student feeling apprehensive about learning finance through reading cases. With textbooks and practice problems for reference, Blackett says he was able to learn NPV, dividend growth model and EV/EBITDA valuation multiples just fine.

“These concepts that we learned in finance (and accounting) helped my classmates make better decisions when we put ourselves in the shoes of each case protagonist,” Blackett writes. “This simulation practice will help prepare us for similar decisions to be made once we’re back in the real world with real problems to solve.”

Myth #3 The Only Thing You’ll Learn at Harvard is Leadership
While Harvard Business School is nicknamed the “West Point of Capitalism,” Blackett writes that in addition to leadership skills, he was surprised to discover an unexpected lesson during his first semester.  In these few short months, he has learned a great deal about both time and priority management at HBS.

With something new and exciting to do every day of the week both on and off campus, many incoming students become overwhelmed by FOMO (fear of missing out). “Each day, I had to make tough decisions on which activities to participate in after school, while considering the tradeoffs of each decision,” he writes, knowing full well that managing his commitments will only become more challenging during the two-year program.

Perhaps the best way to learn whether an MBA program is a good fit for you is by finding out how current students and alumni feel about their experience. To read more of Blackett’s thoughts on his HBS journey so far, please follow the link above for the full article.

You may also be interested in:
HBS Students Fight Stereotypes with Food Bank Fundraiser

Harvard Business School 2014-2015 MBA Essay Tips

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________

Interested in a free 30 minute consultation with the Stacy Blackman Team? Sign up here: http://stacyblackman.com/contact

Stacy Blackman | Stacy Blackman Consulting Inc | http://www.StacyBlackman.com | +1 323.934.3936
MBA blogger, US News and Author, The MBA Application Roadmap

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Use Time Off Wisely [#permalink]

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New post 24 Dec 2014, 07:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Use Time Off Wisely
Next week, 2014 draws to a close. Less than two weeks from today marks the first Round 2 deadline. Are you ready? If you’re not a “list person,” it’s time to become one—at least until the rest of your applications are in.

We’ll help by giving you this outline for your Round 2 To-Do list:

  • Assuming your recommenders have not yet submitted their letters, touch base with them again if it’s been more than two weeks since you last checked in. Remind them that it would be great if they could upload their responses a few days before the deadlines to avoid any last-minute system-crash drama. And thank them again for their time!
Ensuring your recommenders are on-track is your top priority because this is a tough time of the year for people to be pulled away from family obligations. You know you’ll get everything in, but this isn’t consuming their lives like it is yours.

  • Make sure you have all of the documentation each school requires—things like test-score reports and undergraduate or exchange-program transcripts. If you’re missing something at this point, you’ll probably have to hustle to secure what you need.
  • Finalize your resume. Many schools have cut down on essay requirements, so resumes are playing a larger role in deciding prospective students’ fates. It’s critical that your resume tells the full story of your professional, educational and extracurricular achievements.
  • Complete the applications/data forms for each school. Why do this before working on your essays? Because when left to the ultimate last minute, applications fields are extremely easy to screw up. There’s no spellcheck available on these forms, and if you’re rushing through them you are likely to make a mistake. Don’t risk having the very first thing the adcomm sees be riddled with typos!
  • And now . . . the essays. We’ll be honest: we hope you aren’t just starting your essays this late in the game. But it certainly is possible to pull together quality responses within two weeks. Have a few friends or family members on standby to help you firm up your themes and cut down extra words.
  • Take a little time off to enjoy the holidays!
Remember:

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________

Interested in a free 30 minute consultation with the Stacy Blackman Team? Sign up here: http://stacyblackman.com/contact

Stacy Blackman | Stacy Blackman Consulting Inc | http://www.StacyBlackman.com | +1 323.934.3936
MBA blogger, US News and Author, The MBA Application Roadmap

Kudos [?]: 125 [0], given: 0

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Stanford GSB Expands Course on Female Entrepreneurship [#permalink]

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New post 26 Dec 2014, 08:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Stanford GSB Expands Course on Female Entrepreneurship
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Stanford Graduate School of Business‘s course on female business leaders has become so popular it has a lengthy waiting list. According to a recent profile in Fortune, “Entrepreneurship from the Perspective of Women,” taught by Professor Fern Mandelbaum, will now be offered as a full, quarter course, beginning in 2015.

The idea for the course came ten years ago, when Professor Garth Saloner, currently dean of the Stanford GSB, created a two-week seminar on female entrepreneurship with the simple goal of exposing business students to a multitude of entrepreneurship examples.

According to the current course description, this seminar shows how successful women entrepreneurs navigated finding an idea, forming and building a team, being an effective leader, raising money, overcoming setbacks, and assembling a board. It also explores some of the unique challenges women face when approaching entrepreneurship.

“Something that we talk a lot about [in the class] is, ‘how do you use your differences as strengths?’” Mandelbaum tells Fortune. “And [these feelings] could come from being an Asian or African-American person or an introverted male. It’s not just women, but the fact of the matter is, 50 percent of the population is women, and many of them view their differences as weaknesses.”

Female enrollment at the Stanford GSB currently stands at 42%, and perceptions are evolving so that participants no longer view the topics covered in the course as women-specific issues; rather, they are simply people issues, and are important for anyone who wants to be successful in today’s diverse business environment.

“Everything in the class is as important for men as it is for women,” Mandelbaum says.

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________

Interested in a free 30 minute consultation with the Stacy Blackman Team? Sign up here: http://stacyblackman.com/contact

Stacy Blackman | Stacy Blackman Consulting Inc | http://www.StacyBlackman.com | +1 323.934.3936
MBA blogger, US News and Author, The MBA Application Roadmap

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6 Tips for Acing Your MBA Interview [#permalink]

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New post 29 Dec 2014, 07:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: 6 Tips for Acing Your MBA Interview
There is no mute button in an admissions interview to get into a top business school, and since this is one of a handful of opportunities for face time you’ll have with someone from the AdCom team, you’ll need to do all that you can to make the time count.

Keep in mind, the interaction in an MBA interview speaks volumes about what kind of teammate you will be when you are in the program, so make sure the right message is coming across loud and clear.

Here are six interview tactics that will leave them wanting more of you.

1)    THERE’S NO PRIZE FOR ANSWERING THE FASTEST! Business school interviews are as much about getting to know you as they are about getting to know how you think.   The interviewer isn’t going to endorse you based on how fast you answer a question, but they are going to hold it against you if you answer a question without understanding it. So if you’re stumped by a question, ask for clarification. And don’t be afraid to take a moment to ponder your answer.  A well-thought answer is never a bad thing!

2)    BE A BROKEN RECORD.  What’s the best way to get to Carnegie Hall? Practice. The same can be said for your business school interview, PRACTICE!  Once you’ve thought of the stories and anecdotes you want to highlight in your interview, practice them out loud and for an audience. Sure, your roommate may roll her eyes when asked to hear the “Peace Corps” story again and your brother may plug his ears when you tell him the “What I Learned From Being Fired” story again, but all that practice will make sure your Interviewer isn’t the one plugging his ears and rolling his eyes.

3)    IT’S AN INTERVIEW, NOT A MONOLOGUE.  The point of the interview is to get to know you, but you don’t want to bore the interviewer in the process. Remember, they may interview dozens of candidates. That means a lot of eager future-moguls talking about the same thing: themselves. So whenever possible, make the interview a conversation, not a monologue. By including the interviewer in the conversation, you’ll keep them interested and engaged in the most important topic of all: YOU.

4)    DON’T MISS THE OPPORTUNITY TO GET TO KNOW AN ALUM.  If your interviewer just happens to be an alum, take the opportunity to get to know a bit more about their experiences with the school.  Not only will you learn more about your potential business school, but by asking thoughtful questions your interviewer will get another opportunity to see your savvy thought process and insightful way of thinking. Believe us – MBAs love to talk about themselves!

5)    PROFESSIONAL IS AS PROFESSIONAL DOES.  Be on time and be professional.  That means, be on time if not early. Dress professionally, turn your cell phone off and present yourself as you would at work.  Not sure what that means? Ask your friends who have gone to business school, or a trusted professional.  Still not sure? Just think of what your mother would say to do, don’t be late, sit up straight, spit out your gum and for goodness sake, turn off your cell phone!  Nothing screams unprofessional like the beeping of an iphone text because all your buddies and family members want to know how it’s going.

6)    DON’T BE A ROBOT. Easier said than done, but RELAX and realize you are speaking to a real live human being.  If your interviewer wanted formulaic answers without the addition of your personality and charm, they’d read your resume and application package and that would be that.  They’re interviewing you because they want to get to know you. Your personality is as unique as your experiences. Share your story and share who you are, that’s why they’re there after all!

Basically, if you can get from point A to point B in a clear, logical way; maintain an open, friendly, and professional demeanor; dress appropriately; and have an inquisitive attitude about the school and all it has to offer students, you stand a very good chance of coming out of the interview with flying colors.

*     *     *
A version of this post by Stacy was originally published on the MBA website Poets & Quants.

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________

Interested in a free 30 minute consultation with the Stacy Blackman Team? Sign up here: http://stacyblackman.com/contact

Stacy Blackman | Stacy Blackman Consulting Inc | http://www.StacyBlackman.com | +1 323.934.3936
MBA blogger, US News and Author, The MBA Application Roadmap

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Stacy Blackman’s Top MBA Stories of 2014 [#permalink]

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New post 30 Dec 2014, 07:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Stacy Blackman’s Top MBA Stories of 2014
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How is it possible that we’re already in the final days of 2014? Once again, the time is upon us to make new resolutions, push ourselves to learn and grow, and rededicate ourselves to our personal and professional goals. My goal with this blog has always been to bring MBA applicants the latest news from the top business schools, insightful application and essay tips, and to explore major trends affecting the future of management education (I’m looking at you, MOOCs!)

With that in mind, here are some of the most popular topics we’ve covered in 2014:

Before signing off, I’d like to share with you a quote by best-selling author and motivational speaker Denis Waitley that is absolutely perfect in the context of the MBA admissions process. I hope you’ll remember and allow it to buoy your spirits whenever you feel fatigued, face that dreaded writer’s block, or start to notice your eyes glazing over during a marathon GMAT study session.

“Success is almost totally dependent upon drive and persistence. The extra energy required to make another effort or try another approach is the secret of winning.”

Thank you so much for making the Stacy Blackman Blog a top destination for your b-school research. Wishing all of you success, health, joy and continued growth and learning in 2015!

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So Long, 2014! [#permalink]

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New post 31 Dec 2014, 07:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: So Long, 2014!
As we prepare to welcome 2015 this week, it’s a time for both reflection and anticipation. But odds are if you’ve been working on MBA applications, you’ve already been doing a lot of both over the past several months.

Updating your resume, brainstorming the most intriguing stories for your essays and reminding your recommenders of everything you worked on together is about as intense a walk down memory lane as it gets. You’ve spent weeks upon weeks reviewing your life’s accomplishments and navel-gazing in order to ensure your materials will show admissions committees who you really are.

Now we encourage you to take a break (even if it’s just for a day) and focus on looking forward.

If you already know where you’ll be heading in the fall—or are in the envious position of deciding between programs—then there’s no doubt 2015 is going to be a banner year. You have much to be excited about!

If you’ve been waitlisted, are putting the finishing touches on your Round 2 applications or are just beginning the application process for Round 3, we understand how nerve-wracking it is to have a good chunk of 2015 up in the air. But your future plans will all fall into place in due time. And once your materials are in, there’s no harm in testing out the power of positive thinking, right?

You could also make it a New Year’s resolution to look forward to bigger and better things in 2015—no matter what ends up happening with business school.

Or you could take this slightly more cynical approach:

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Happy New Year,

The team at Stacy Blackman Consulting

*     *    *

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What to Do When Waitlisted by Your Dream B-School [#permalink]

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New post 02 Jan 2015, 07:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: What to Do When Waitlisted by Your Dream B-School
If you were a Round 1 applicant this season, over the last few weeks you may have received great news, upsetting news or a mix of both— otherwise known as placement on the waitlist. First of all, the waitlist is great feedback. It means that you are qualified to attend the program, and that the school was interested in your application and your profile. Unfortunately, it was a competitive year and they couldn’t offer you a solid place in the class. No matter the reason, the waitlist is still a tough place to be.

Will I get in?
There is almost no way to know if you will be admitted off the waitlist. It certainly does happen, often, yet you have little information about the ranking of the waitlist, how many people are on the waitlist, or whether the school will reach the yield they are looking for with regular applicants. Therefore, being on the waitlist means a certain comfort with ambiguity. Hopefully you were admitted to another school and can decide whether to remain in limbo or not.

Should I stay on the waitlist?
The decision to stay on the waitlist depends on your interest level in the MBA program you have been waitlisted for. If it is your top choice, you may be willing to remain on the list until school begins, especially if you are willing to move quickly and give up a deposit on a school that has offered you firm admission.

If the waitlisting program is not your first choice, or you would like to settle your MBA plans before school starts, you may choose to remove your name from the list. It is a great service to another applicant if you do so promptly, allowing someone else a chance at their MBA dream.

Can I improve my chances of admission from the waitlist?
You may be able to improve your chances. The number one rule of waitlists is to follow directions. The school provided you with instructions about how to handle the waitlist process, and you must follow these directions to avoid having a negative impact on your standing with the admissions committee. If the school tells you that no additional materials are required, no additional materials are required, and you should not submit any under any circumstances.

If the MBA program does provide the option of submitting additional materials, apply consistent application strategy to the task. The AdCom may welcome letters of recommendation, improved GMAT scores or additional essays/letters from you. Carefully consider your strengths and weaknesses and what may be most beneficial in your situation.

Letter/Essay
If you have recently been promoted at work, have accomplished a personal goal, or have completed an academic class with a strong grade, it may be worth writing a letter to update the admissions committee with your news. Try to keep your essay or letter factual, and do not repeat information that was already included in your original application.

Recommendations
A supplemental recommendation may add information about you to strengthen your position on the waitlist. If you have been involved in an extracurricular activity, know someone associated with the school, or can use a letter to strengthen a part of your application, the letter may be the right direction to proceed in. Make sure your additional recommendation is brief, focused and adds significant additional information to your overall profile.

GMAT scores/Transcripts
Factual information like improved GMAT scores or transcripts from successful business related classes could go a long way towards bolstering your chances.

While the waitlist may be frustrating, it is a positive indication for your application, and you may be fortunate enough to receive final admission from your chosen program.

Good luck!

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Are You Applying for B-School in Round 2? [#permalink]

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New post 05 Jan 2015, 07:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Are You Applying for B-School in Round 2?
Today is the Round 2 deadline at several top programs—Wharton School, Michigan Ross, Harvard Business School, Duke-Fuqua, Georgetown McDonough, London Business School—with several more in the coming week, and we want to congratulate all MBA hopefuls who, despite the distraction of the holidays and end-of-year festivities, have managed to organize their time and efforts to get their applications in during this highly competitive round.

Whether you found yourself rushing for Round 2, or haven’t quite gotten your application together and are wondering whether Round 3 attracts onlymavericks and super-humans, keep in mind that only you know when the time to apply is right. However, if you’re aiming at a highly competitive program, we advise you to hit submit only once you’ve put together your absolute best, strongest application package.

There is still work to be done as you begin preparing for your MBA interviews and, if you haven’t already, planning your campus visits to coincide with your interview. But first, take a few moments to relax, recharge, and bask in the glow of the major accomplishment you’ve just achieved. The journey to business school is often arduous, but with any luck your considerable efforts will soon be rewarded.

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Round 2 Deadline at Harvard Business School [#permalink]

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New post 06 Jan 2015, 05:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Round 2 Deadline at Harvard Business School
Today is the Round 2 deadline at Harvard Business School, and Director of MBA Admissions and Financial Aid Dee Leopold updated her blog with a brief re-cap of what will happen.

As a reminder, the deadline is at noon EST, and you can expect traffic on the server to be heavy around that time, so don’t panic if it takes time to successfully submit, Leopold urges.

While the deadline for applications and recommenders is officially the same, Leopold explains that the admissions team will keep the system open for a few days to allow recommendations to arrive. Once there is one recommendation letter in the file, the AdCom will begin to review your application.

By mid-day Wednesday, AdCom will have a handle on the size of the Round 2 applicant pool, and Leopold expects her team to have a good idea of when interview invitations will go out.

Off-campus interviews will take place in Shanghai, Tokyo, Dubai, Mumbai, London, Paris, Menlo Park, and New York City, she says.

As soon as we hear additional interview details, we’ll share them here. Good luck HBS applicants!

You may also be interested in:
MBA Trends at Harvard Business School and Beyond

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Last-Minute Round 2 Tips [#permalink]

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New post 07 Jan 2015, 07:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Last-Minute Round 2 Tips
Before this week is over, more than a dozen of the top MBA programs will close out their Round 2 application periods.

If you are targeting one of those schools and haven’t hit “Submit” yet, here are some last-minute tips for you:

  • Ensure your recommendation letters are in. We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: you know you’ll get your materials uploaded in time, but you simply can’t be as confident about your recommenders. If you haven’t received confirmation that they’ve submitted their letters, stop everything and do what you can to help them finish this critical task. Seriously. Right now. Go call them.
  • Give both your resume and your essays to a family member or friend to review for typos. At this point, it’s not wise to change much about the content itself, so be clear that you are not looking for their thoughts on whether there’s a better story to use or example to discuss. Their concern should be your spelling and grammar, not making you second-guess your strategy.
  • The application itself—or, the “data form”—also needs a careful review. Here are specific things to look for before you hand it over to someone else with fresh eyes:
    • Spelling errors, missing letters/words, stray punctuation. There’s no spell-check feature in most applications, and if you’re in a hurry, it’s easy to make a mistake.
    • Consistency. Ensure you’ve remained consistent in everything from titles to organization names to date ranges across the data form, your resume and your essays. If something doesn’t match up across your materials, it may raise a red flag to the AdCom.
    • Redundancy. While you want your background to presented consistently across each piece of your MBA application, if you simply copy and paste your resume bullets into data-form fields such as “Most significant accomplishment,” you’re wasting an opportunity to tell the AdCom something new. Even if time is tight, you should be able to describe an achievement in a fresh way or give additional details that didn’t fit on your resume.
    • Correct program name. The “optional essay” or “additional information” field in particular can be a dangerous one if you re-use the same content across applications—ensure you don’t have School X’s name in School Y’s materials.
Best of luck in getting everything in!

And remember:

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Do you want to stay on top of the application process with timely tips like these? Please subscribe to our weekly newsletter and you’ll receive our expert advice straight in your mailbox before it appears on the blog, plus special offers, promotions, discounts, invitations to events, and more.

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Strong Job Market Predicted for 2015 B-School Graduates [#permalink]

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New post 08 Jan 2015, 08:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Strong Job Market Predicted for 2015 B-School Graduates
What turned out to be a strong job market for business school and management degree graduates in 2014 should continue into 2015, according to the Graduate Management Admission Council‘s (GMAC) Year-End Poll of Employers, released Wednesday.

This year’s hiring outlook holds steady for 2015 graduates as nine out of ten employers planning to hire business school graduates expect to maintain or increase the number of job openings for these hires compared with 2014.

“The solid job prospects for b-school talent seen over the past several years and again reflected in this poll, give prospective students good reason to consider pursuing these degrees as part of a strategy to drive their career goals,” says Rebecca Estrada Worthington, GMAC’s Survey Research Manager.

The poll of 169 employers in 33 countries, conducted in late 2014, serves as an early view into the 2015 job market for MBA, master of management, accounting, finance, and other specialized business master degree-holders.

The greatest hiring demand for b-school talent remains recent MBA graduates, while the largest increase in hiring demand is projected to be for Master in Management talent, as reflected in the eleven percentage point increase in firms who hired this category of graduates in 2014.

“Our data show that even in the depths of the recession, business and management degrees can provide a measure of job protection and opportunity. Today, in a recovering global economy, management degrees can be a powerful driver of confidence and provide fuel for an individual’s career growth,” Estrada Worthington says.

The annual Year-End Poll of Employers provides an early look at hiring plans. For a copy of the poll report, go to gmac.com/employerpoll.

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Stacy Blackman’s B-School Buzz [#permalink]

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New post 09 Jan 2015, 13:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Stacy Blackman’s B-School Buzz
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Welcome back to Stacy Blackman’s B-School Buzz, our periodic check-in with some of the MBA blogosphere’s applicant and student contributors. This was a busy week as multiple bloggers submitted Round 2 applications, and the new year sparked reflection and shifts in goals that better reflect the current reality. As a reminder for those who have been waitlisted: Don’t lose hope! You’re still in the running, and there are definitely things you can do to manage the waitlist experience.

Setting goals for the new yearPro GMAT offers many congrats for those who have recently submitted their Round 2 applications, as well as commiseration for applicants who were not admitted in R1 and will likely postpone their MBA dreams until next season. In addition to taking on additional work responsibilities, Pro GMAT has also set an annual goal of walking for 315,000 minutes. Here’s to reaching your objectives in 2015!

5 changes that made a difference—After going through multiple rejections last year, Scott Duncan used that learning experience to improve his MBA applications this season—to remarkable success. In this post, he talks about five things he did differently this year that earned him an acceptance at a top MBA program. This post is a must-read for anyone feeling down about their admittance status so far.

Going all in for Round 2—Four applications submitted in two days is a killer, but that’s just what Pulling That MBA Trigger did this week. She readily acknowledges some of the issues that may have affected her chances during Round 1, and is feeling much better about the changes she made during this latest round—and her chances, as well. Regardless of the outcome, she has a great attitude, saying, “MBA this year or no MBA this year, I’m gonna be okay!”

Shifting gearsMBA on My Mind has done some soul-searching and come to the realization that her business school dreams must be put on hold—temporarily. With a start-up that needs nurturing and attention, funding issues that must be resolved, and a GMAT score that could use a boost, revising the timeline to apply in the 2015 cycle just makes more sense on all fronts.

Decisions, decisions—Ah, the enviable position of deciding between multiple top-notch MBA programs! Hugo has whittled down the candidates to MIT Sloan and Tuck School of Business, both excellent schools and equally guaranteed to advance his career. Seems the decision, at least in part, will come down to physical environment and what kind of experience he wants to have for the next two years.

Do you have an MBA-centric blog? Want it featured in an upcoming B-School Buzz post? If so, email me at buzz@StacyBlackman.com.

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Build an Effective MBA Application as a Female Candidate [#permalink]

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New post 12 Jan 2015, 07:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Build an Effective MBA Application as a Female Candidate
This post originally appeared on Stacy’s “Strictly Business” MBA Blog on U.S.News.com
It’s tempting to dismiss the idea that female MBA applicants can benefit from targeted tips when applying to business school as out of touch or old fashioned. But the reality is that women are still considered a minority on campus and sometimes gender stereotypes can impact their applications.

Female enrollment continues to trail behind men, and despite gains in recent years, the latest Graduate Management Admission Council application trends survey reveals that the proportion of woman applicants dipped slightly in 2014 for full-time, two-year MBA programs. The number dropped to 37 percent in 2014 from 39 percent in 2013.

In business school, as in the working world, a woman might find herself in a position where she is the only woman at the table or in the minority. So, you need to do all you can to feel comfortable and confident in those situations. Obviously, this information won’t apply for every female applicant, but having an awareness of some of the differences that exist can be very helpful.

A frequent issue I’ve had in my consulting work with female clients relates to the admissions committee doubting whether the applicant has enough moxie to contribute to the classroom discussions that form a crucial part of the MBA learning experience.

Several clients have reported that their recommenders received phone calls from admissions officers with questions such as, “Is she confident?” or “Will she speak up in class discussions?” I can’t recall a time when a male client experienced a similar problem.

In the application process, female candidates have to make sure that they exude confidence. Essays, interviews and letters of recommendation need to indicate a comfort level with speaking out, defending points of view and collaborating with all types of people.

In an interview scenario, female candidates often begin their answers with a disclaimer that reveals their insecurities and detracts from any positive information that follows or are too modest about their accomplishments for fear of appearing arrogant. Ideally, you started cultivating your personal brand early on in your application process, so tap into those bullet points and broadcast your accomplishments and skills with pride.

Business schools have made significant efforts to increase female enrollment over the last decade, and the numbers are much higher than when I attended Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. Some male-dominated post-MBA career paths, such as finance, are hungrier for women as well, so a woman targeting those fields may have an advantage over one pursuing a role in brand management. This is true in the MBA admissions process as well as in the job search.

Another upside is that by tapping into storytelling skills and the emotions behind an event or experience, we’ve found that female clients generally have an easier time coming up with compelling essays. The admissions committee doesn’t favor women over men outright, but the subjective nature of this part of the application process often gives females an edge.

If you are a woman planning on applying to business school in the future, I encourage you to connect with Forte Foundation and Catalyst, two widely respected organizations dedicated to expanding opportunities for women in business. Forte’s mission is to educate women on the value of an MBA degree, and holds events throughout the year to help prepare female applicants to become the best candidate possible.

Also, look for MBA blogs written by female students and applicants, such as Defying Gravity–The MBA Journey, My Life of Bliss, and Pulling that MBA Trigger, for advice from those who have walked the path before you.

The array of opportunities for women on campus is another important aspect of business school that you can consider as an applicant. Be sure to research what options your target programs offer, and think about how you could help contribute to them.

The Huffington Post featured a great article last year written by a student at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business who believes being a woman MBA candidate is a beautiful thing, the best part being that you have the ability to affect change. Showing schools that you are aware of their networking opportunities for women and have ideas for how to build upon them is a great way to convince the admissions team that you are a perfect fit.

Earning an MBA degree opens doors all over the business world, so make sure to evaluate all of your options and take advantage of the numerous resources available to help you reach your career goals.

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UV Darden School Names Scott Beardsley as Dean [#permalink]

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New post 12 Jan 2015, 19:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: UV Darden School Names Scott Beardsley as Dean
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The University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business has appointed Scott Beardsley as its next dean, effective August 1. Beardsley succeeds Robert F. Bruner, who is completing his 10th year as Darden’s dean, and last year announced his intention to return to the faculty at the end of his second term.

Currently a senior partner of McKinsey & Company, Beardsley leads learning and leadership development for all McKinsey professionals. He has been based for most of his 26-year career in its Brussels, Belgium office.

Beardsley received a Bachelor of Science in electrical engineering magna cum laude from Tufts University and an MBA from MIT Sloan School of Management, where he received highest honors as a Henry S. Dupont III Scholar and served as editor and marketing manager of the MIT Sloan Management Review. He is a candidate at the University of Pennsylvania for an executive doctorate in higher education management, expected in May.

“The Darden School of Business is moving from strength to strength,” says U.Va. President Teresa A. Sullivan. “Scott Beardsley’s knowledge and vast experience will help guide the school to greater heights of excellence. We are very fortunate that Scott will build upon the strong legacy of Bob Bruner, who, along with his team, achieved recognition for Darden as the world’s best graduate business education experience.”

A frequent author, speaker and media commentator, Beardsley has presented at the World Economic Forum at Davos and teaches as a faculty member in McKinsey’s programs. Previously, he lectured in the MBA program of the Belgian business school Institut d’Administration et de Gestion. He chairs the board of directors of the American Chamber of Commerce in Belgium.

In a press statement, Beardsley expressed great enthusiasm for this new role, saying, “I believe deeply in Darden’s values and its clear and focused mission to improve the world by developing responsible leaders and advancing knowledge. I am very excited to be part of the University of Virginia family, and its Jeffersonian commitment to excellence.”

You can learn more about Darden’s newest dean, Scott Beardsley, here.

You may also be interested in:
Darden’s Dean Bruner Plans Return to Faculty Position

Darden’s Dean on the Value of International MBA Students

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Should You Consider Applying in Round 3? [#permalink]

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New post 14 Jan 2015, 08:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Should You Consider Applying in Round 3?
You tried your best, but you just couldn’t pull together all of your business school materials before Round 2 deadlines hit. Now what should you do? Isn’t Round 3 where MBA applications go to die?

Not always.

In general, it is tougher to earn a spot at most top MBA programs when you apply in Round 3. Admissions committees have seen thousands of qualified applicants throughout Rounds 1 and 2, have pulled together a fairly good idea of what the incoming class will look like, and have also compiled a waitlist of additional candidates.

Before Round 3 closes out, a certain percentage of people who were admitted in Round 1 and 2 will have already committed to a program. In short, there will be precious few spots left when the adcomm finally turns its attention toward final-round applications.

So where does that leave you? It depends. If it’s been more than five years since you graduated from college, you should seriously consider applying in Round 3. While every situation is different, time could start to work against you at programs that tend to focus on younger applicants.

Plus, the odds of your candidacy significantly improving over the next eight months after you’ve already been in the workforce for so long are probably slim. If this is your situation and all you need to do is put the finishing touches on your materials, go for Round 3.

There are also other circumstances that make Round 3 a perfectly fine option: you’re in the military and recently received your release papers; you are going through a job change or rolling off of a major project; you had extenuating circumstances that prevented you from applying earlier (and which you can reference in the optional essay); or you are most interested in MBA programs outside of the “top 20.”

However, if you’re only two or three years into your career, it may make sense to wait until next season’s Round 1. Focus on building more leadership and community service/volunteer experience in the meantime and make your application even stronger.

And remember:

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Stacy Blackman | Stacy Blackman Consulting Inc | http://www.StacyBlackman.com | +1 323.934.3936
MBA blogger, US News and Author, The MBA Application Roadmap

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Should You Consider Applying in Round 3?   [#permalink] 14 Jan 2015, 08:00

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