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mbaMission Admissions Consultant
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Dealing with Long Underlines in GMAT Sentence Correction Questions [#permalink]
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FROM mbaMission Blog: Dealing with Long Underlines in GMAT Sentence Correction Questions
With regard to the GMAT, raw intellectual horsepower helps, but it is not everything. Manhattan Prep’s Stacey Koprince teaches you how to perform at your best on test day by using some common sense.

Many of the more “standard” (and lower-level) Sentence Correction (SC) questions have easier-to-identify “splits,” or differences in the answer choices. For instance, answers A and B might use the word “have,” while C, D, and E use the word “has,” indicating a relatively easy-to-spot singular versus plural issue.

Sentences with longer underlines, however, are more likely to be testing such global issues as Structure, Meaning, Modifiers, and Parallelism. In these questions, large chunks of the sentence move around, the fundamental sentence structure changes, and so on. In one GMATPrep problem, for example, answer A includes the text “the brain growing in mice when placed” while answer B says “mice whose brains grow when they are placed.” This is not just a simple switch of a single word—something more complicated is happening. Take a look at this article for the full example.

To have a chance at answering these correctly, we may need to modify our standard approach to SC. In GMATPrep’s Lake Baikal problem, the entire sentence is underlined, and the answers seem to be changing completely around. Where do we even start? Click the link to try the problem and learn more about how to tackle these types of SCs. Here is another one discussing an organization called Project SETI.

When you are done with this, try this third one: FCC rates. Here, only about two-thirds of the sentence is underlined, but the sentence is unusually long.

When you are starting to feel more comfortable with those, I have an exercise for you. Pull up some long-underline Official Guide questions that you have previously completed. Cover up the original sentence and look only at the answers (in other words, if the entire sentence is not underlined, then you are going to do this exercise without actually reading the full sentence!).

Based on the differences that you see, try to articulate all of the issues that are being tested and eliminate as many answers as you can. (Note: You will not always be able to eliminate all four wrong answers; sometimes the non-underlined portion of the sentence contains some crucial information!) When you are done, look at the full thing and review the explanation to see how close you got and whether you missed anything.

When you are starting to feel more comfortable with those, I have an exercise for you. Pull up some long-underline Official Guide questions that you have previously completed. Cover up the original sentence and look only at the answers (in other words, if the entire sentence is not underlined, then you are going to do this exercise without actually reading the full sentence!).

Based on the differences that you see, try to articulate all of the issues that are being tested and eliminate as many answers as you can. (Note: You will not always be able to eliminate all four wrong answers; sometimes the non-underlined portion of the sentence contains some crucial information!) When you are done, look at the full thing and review the explanation to see how close you got and whether you missed anything.
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Kelley School of Business and Fisher College of Business Offer MBAs in [#permalink]
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FROM mbaMission Blog: Kelley School of Business and Fisher College of Business Offer MBAs in the Midwest

Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business

As the demand for business-savvy health care professionals grows, business schools are taking notice. Leading the way is the Business of Medicine Physician MBA at Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business, which is designed to train practicing physicians to assume management positions and face a changing health care business environment. As the Financial Times reports, the two-year degree program began in the fall of 2013 and presents a new kind of opportunity at the intersection of business management and medical practice.

The degree combines the basic curriculum of Kelley’s full-time MBA with specialized health care courses supported by the school’s Center for the Business of Life Sciences. The Financial Times quotes Idalene Kesner, who was interim dean at the time of the article but has since been appointed dean, as saying, “With this degree, physician leaders will emerge with the full skillset to transform individual institutions, the broad healthcare field and, most important, patient outcomes.” Part of the Business of Medicine Physician MBA program is taught online, drawing on Kelley’s pioneering strengths in distance learning, while the other part entails one weekend residence per month, allowing for a more flexible time commitment.


Ohio State’s Fisher College of Business

Despite the size of its parent institution, another Midwestern business school, the Fisher College of Business at Ohio State University boasts a relatively intimate classroom experience—with approximately 100 students in each incoming full-time MBA class—and a close-knit community. Fisher students consequently benefit from the school’s wider university network (more than 550,000 alumni) and its proximity to major companies based both in Columbus and throughout the Midwest. Bloomberg Businessweek ranked Fisher 37th in its list of top U.S. full-time MBA programs in 2017.

The Fisher curriculum consists of a core sequence spanning the first year of the program and offers ten optional disciplines in which students can major (including a “Make Your Own Major” option). A particularly noteworthy highlight of Fisher’s MBA curriculum is its experiential Leadership Development program, which spans the full two years. The first program of its kind to be offered at a business school, the program organizes various workshops and assessments during the academic year, in addition to connecting students with corporate mentors who offer career guidance and networking opportunities. Also among the offerings are expert speakers, including such leaders as the chairman of Harley-Davidson and the founder and CEO of KRUEGER+CO Consulting, Inc.
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MBA Admissions Myths Destroyed: I Love Your School So Much That I Cann [#permalink]
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FROM mbaMission Blog: MBA Admissions Myths Destroyed: I Love Your School So Much That I Cannot Stop Writing About It
Although admissions officers want to know that you are interested in their school, they do not want to read your repeated professions of love for it. Some candidates mistakenly believe they must include in each essay numerous enthusiastic statements about how they will improve their skills at their target school, regardless of whether the school asks for such information.

For instance, consider this entirely fictitious example of an individual who responds to the essay question “What achievement are you most proud of and why?” by writing the following:

“In starting ABC Distributors, I learned a great deal about entrepreneurship, and I hope to formalize this knowledge at the XYZ School of Management. Only with XYZ’s vast entrepreneurial resources and profound alumni connections will I be able to take my next venture to a higher level. At XYZ, I will grow my business skills and potential.”

We can identify numerous problems with this submission—including that the statements are cloying and have no real substance. However, the most egregious issue is that the school never asked the applicant to discuss how the program would affect his/her abilities. Thus, the “Why our school?” component is just empty pandering.

As you write your essays, always focus on answering the essay questions as they are written—do not try to anticipate or respond to unasked questions. So, if your target school does not explicitly request that you address the question “Why our school?,” do not look for ways to sneakily answer that question in your essay(s).

Of course, if the school does ask for this information, then certainly do your research and provide it. Again, the key is to always respond to the school’s question and give the admissions committee the information it wants.
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Begin Your Essays with Your Strongest Accomplishments and Enliven with [#permalink]
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FROM mbaMission Blog: Begin Your Essays with Your Strongest Accomplishments and Enliven with the Active Voice
When preparing personal statements that require significant information about career progress, many MBA applicants choose to discuss their accomplishments in chronological order. Although the simplicity of this approach makes it an attractive one, we encourage you to consider an alternative to showcase your more recent and thus potentially stronger accomplishments first. By choosing this alternate approach, you may capture your reader’s imagination more quickly and reduce the risk of being lost amid similar candidates.

Consider the examples of a software analyst who is now a project manager managing a budget and leading a team of 20 programmers, and of an investment banking analyst who is now in his/her third year with a company and has been sent abroad to work directly with a CFO:

The Project Manager:

Chronological: “Joining ABC Technology as a software programmer, I…”

Reverse: “Scrutinizing my plan one last time, I waited to present my team’s $3.7M proposal to our client…” 

The Investment Banker:

Chronological: “As an investment banking analyst at Deutsche Bank, I started…”

Reverse: “Arriving in Taipei, I was admittedly nervous to finally meet the CFO of XYZ Co. and lead my firm’s due diligence process…”

In these examples, the candidates immediately present their standout accomplishments and thrust the reader into the excitement of their stories. Although this kind of reverse introduction is not “all purpose,” it can be a feasible option in many circumstances. Still, in choosing this approach, the candidate must also be able to fluidly return to earlier moments in his/her career later in the essay—a task that requires creativity and skill.

Another task that requires skill is determining when to use the active voice. Many writers use the passive voice in their essays, but the best writers know it should be used only rarely, if ever.

The passive voice puts the verb in the “wrong” place in the sentence, thereby removing the “action.” Subjects become acted upon rather than performing actions. Sentences with the passive voice typically include verb phrases such as “was” or “has been” (e.g., “it was determined,” “the project has been completed”).

Consider this example of the passive voice:

“The marathon was run despite my injury.”

In this sentence, the verb (or action) is diminished because the writer says the marathon “was run.” A better way of describing the same activity is to use the active voice, as illustrated in this example:

“I ran the marathon despite my injury.”

Here are two more examples:

Passive: “The contract was awarded to us.”

Active: “We won the contract.”

Passive: “It was decided that I would be in charge of the project.”

Active: “My boss selected me to be in charge of the project.”

Remember—you are the center and subject of your essays. The best way to tell your stories and explain your accomplishments is to make sure that you are the catalyst of the stories you tell. Using the active voice ensures that the admissions committee(s) will see you as an active person who makes things happen.
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Carnegie Mellon University Tepper Essay Analysis, 2018–2019 [#permalink]
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FROM mbaMission Blog: Carnegie Mellon University Tepper Essay Analysis, 2018–2019

In recent years, Carnegie Mellon University’s Tepper School of Business has offered its applicants one required essay question that was in many ways an open invitation to share whatever they felt was most important for the admissions committee to know about them. For this season, however, the school has made a big change in its approach. Candidates still only have to submit one 300- to 350-word essay, but they must now choose from three different essay prompts, and the scope of those prompts is rather  narrow, comparatively. Any applicants who feel they need to share additional information can do so via the optional essay, which is sufficiently broad to accommodate essays about more than just problem areas in one’s candidacy (if executed effectively). Our full analysis of the program’s revamped essay prompts follows.

At Carnegie Mellon University’s Tepper School, we love to tell our story. Below is your chance to tell yours. Please select only ONE of the options below to complete the essay requirement (maximum 300–350 words).

Option #1: Carnegie Mellon University is an institution that never stops looking and moving ahead, pioneering the next way forward with technology, business and research to answer questions big and small. Personally or professionally, in what way have you been a pioneer?

Tepper, like all top MBA programs, seeks candidates who have ambition, a burning desire to move forward and effect change in business and the world. Applying to business school is already a strong indicator of this kind of mind-set and passion, but the admissions committee wants to know that you have more than just a fire in your belly, so to speak, and that this attitude is authentically part of who you are. So to prove this, you need to share an experience from your past that evidences it. Showing that you have already—and proactively—taken steps to forge a new path or uncover a new option in a specific context demonstrates for the school that you possess the personality and drive necessary to identify novel opportunities and to pursue them with determination and, ultimately, success.

As with many application essays, we recommend taking a narrative approach here. Set the stage by introducing the situation you encountered that inspired you to take action. Explain what your new spin on that situation was and your thought process. Where did your idea come from? Why did you believe pursuing it was the right course of action? How did you develop your plan for your pioneering idea? What results did you envision? Then, of course, discuss the actions you took and the outcome of the situation. By clearly outlining the entire situation so that the admissions reader can follow the progression and understand your thinking at each stage, you will establish that you indeed possess the kind of thoughtful enthusiasm and drive the school is seeking.

Although Tepper does not specifically ask you to share what you learned from the situation, showing that you naturally reflect on your actions and achievements in such a way as to educate and equip yourself for future incidents is a good idea, if space allows. Doing so can serve as evidence of your maturity and self-awareness.  Just be sure to restrict yourself to only a sentence or two.

Option #2: Amidst the ambiguous and unchartered nature of change, Carnegie Mellon University students and alumni rise above to envision and create. Discuss how you have anticipated change in your professional life. In what ways did you effectively collaborate to create your desired outcome?

If you choose to respond to this essay prompt, one of your goals will be to show that you are a thoughtful, forward-looking individual who carefully processes information. We will assume to start that you are applying to business school with a plan in mind and not for a shallow reason—not because you think you are supposed to or just to follow in a parent’s footsteps, and definitely not because you do not know what else to do at this juncture in your life! And if that is true, we then also assume that you have considered your options along with potential setbacks and challenges and that you are ready to face them if they arise. You do your research and understand the kind of preparation and investment—time, energy, thought, etc.—that achieving one’s goals requires. And if this is true, then we can assume that this is not a brand new mind-set you just developed in time to apply to business school, so you must naturally approach key moments and decisions in your life with this attitude.

You therefore should have at least a few illustrative stories from your past of times when you knew an inflection point of some kind was in your future and planned to navigate it in a way that would move you in the direction of your professional ambitions. Perhaps you learned that an opportunity for promotion would soon be available at your company, so you spoke with your supervisor about how to best position yourself for consideration for the role. Or you sought out courses that would hone your skills in a certain area because you wanted to target a new job or project. Sharing such moments with the admissions committee will help prove that you can and will do so again in the future, not only in the Tepper MBA program but also in your professional life after graduation.

Note that of the three essay options Tepper offers this year, this is the only one that specifies that you must discuss a career-related story. Also, do not overlook the word “collaborate” in the final line of the prompt. Very often in life—and we would say, particularly in business—success is not a one-man (or one-woman) show. Sometimes the best outcomes require input from and effective teamwork among multiple people. Tepper seems to be making a quiet nod to this idea and inviting you to explain how you have called upon others as you have progressed through your career to date.

Option #3: At Carnegie Mellon University, our difference is what we imagine for the world and how we answer its challenges. What impact have you had on the world around you?

At mbaMission, we of course believe that today’s MBA students will be the individuals leading organizations and spearheading innovation in the years ahead—effectively changing the world with their ideas and decisions. With this prompt, Tepper is interested in learning how much of this instinct and drive you already possess and how you have applied it thus far in your life. The school does not specify whether you should focus on your personal life or your career, so consider all your options from both realms as you  brainstorm, and keep in mind that “world” does not have to be taken literally (note that the exact phrase is “world around you”). You could, for example, have affected one person in a truly profound way, perhaps by teaching an adult to read, which opened the door for him/her to get a better job, gain citizenship, or apply to college. You might have had a meaningful impact on a group, such as by motivating a team of coworkers to overcome an obstacle and achieve an important goal for the company. Or perhaps you affected a community, maybe by arranging a fund-raiser to create or revive a local park or activity center that in turn improved the lives of the area’s residents.  

A narrative approach will unquestionably be a good option for this essay. Introduce the situation you encountered. Explain what (or perhaps who) inspired you to step forward, and describe your thought process as you considered your options. Discuss how you put your intentions/plan into action, and then detail the outcome. Most importantly, clarify the extended results of your efforts. This is the “impact” part of the experience and therefore the most crucial element of your response for the school—demonstrating that the outcome had a sustained effect on others.

Optional Essay: Use this essay to convey important information that you may not have otherwise been able to convey. This may include unexplained resume gaps, context for recommender selection, etc. If you are a re-applicant, explain how your candidacy has strengthened since your last application.

Tepper’s optional essay prompt is somewhat broad in the sense that it does not demand that you discuss only problem areas in your candidacy. That said, the second line of the prompt does seem to imply that the admissions committee expects the essay to be used in this way. If an element of your profile would benefit from further explanation—such as a poor grade or overall GPA, a low GMAT or GRE score, or a legal or disciplinary issue—this is your opportunity to address it and answer any related questions an admissions officer might have. We caution you against simply trying to fill this space because you fear that not doing so would somehow count against you, and do not interpret this as a blank-slate invitation to dump every bit of remaining information about yourself that you feel the school is lacking or to offer a few anecdotes you were unable to use in your required essay. Although no word limit is stipulated, be mindful that by submitting a second essay, you are making a claim on an (undoubtedly very busy) admissions representative’s time, so you be sure that what you have written is worth the additional resources and effort. For more guidance, see our mbaMission Optional Essays Guide, in which we offer detailed advice (along with multiple examples) on when and how to take advantage of the optional essay.

If you are a reapplicant, this essay is pretty straightforward. Whether you have improved your academic record, received a promotion, begun a new and exciting project, increased your community involvement, or taken on some sort of personal challenge, the key to success with this essay is conveying a very deliberate path of achievement. Tepper wants to know that you have been actively striving to improve yourself and your profile, and that you have seized opportunities during the previous year to do so, because a Tepper MBA is vital to you. The responses to this essay question will vary greatly from one candidate to the next, because each person’s needs and experiences differ. We are more than happy to provide one-on-one assistance with this highly personal essay to ensure that your efforts over the past year are presented in the best light possible.
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Professor Profiles: Gautam Kaul, University of Michigan Stephen M. Ros [#permalink]
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FROM mbaMission Blog: Professor Profiles: Gautam Kaul, University of Michigan Stephen M. Ross School of Business

Many MBA applicants feel that they are purchasing a brand when they choose a business school. However, the educational experience you will have is what is crucial to your future, and no one will affect your education more than your professors. Today, we profile Gautam Kaul from the University of Michigan Stephen M. Ross School of Business.

Gautam Kaul, professor of finance and the Fred M. Taylor Professor of Business Administration, teaches both core curriculum courses and electives. In addition to referencing his intellectual capabilities, students with whom mbaMission spoke described Kaul as extremely friendly and having a great sense of humor. He is also known for his willingness to help students both inside and outside the classroom. In 2005, in direct response to student interest, Kaul developed the course “Finance and the Sustainable Enterprise.” In return, students recognized his efforts and awarded him the Sustainability Pioneer Award and a plaque in his honor on one of the chairs in the main auditorium of the university’s School of Natural Resources and Environment. Kaul has been nominated for an MBA Teaching Excellence Award (which is voted on by the student body) numerous times, and he won the award in 1996, 2006, 2009, 2011, and 2013. He is also the 2009 recipient of the Victor L. Bernard Leadership in Teaching Award from the university’s Center for Research on Learning and Teaching.

For more information about Michigan Ross and 16 other top-ranked business schools, check out the free mbaMission Insider’s Guides.
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To Keep or Cancel Your GMAT Scores? [#permalink]
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FROM mbaMission Blog: To Keep or Cancel Your GMAT Scores?
With regard to the GMAT, raw intellectual horsepower helps, but it is not everything. Manhattan Prep’s Stacey Koprince teaches you how to perform at your best on test day by using some common sense.

The GMAT offers various kinds of flexibility around your decision to keep or cancel your GMAT scores—but also some restrictions. It’s important to understand your options so that you make the best decision for you!

How does it work?

At the end of the test, you will be shown your scores (for everything except the essay) and you will then be asked whether you want to keep or cancel your GMAT scores. If you keep your scores, they’ll go on your official record. If you cancel them, they won’t; the school won’t see those scores, nor will the schools even know that you took the test that day.

Right at that moment, you’ll have 2 minutes to decide whether to keep or cancel your GMAT scores. Later, you can change your mind—but you’ll have to pay a fee to change the status of your scores. So let’s first talk about how to make the best decision during that first 2 minutes.

In short, you need to have an idea of what you’d want to do before you even walk in the testing room.

What do your schools want to see?

First, what kind of program do you want? MBA programs generally care only about your highest score. Other kinds of programs, such as Ph.D. programs, may look at all of your scores. So it’s important to find out how your schools are going to use the data.

If you are applying to an MBA program, you can assume that they don’t care if you take the test multiple times. They’re just going to use your best score and that’s that. If you are applying to a Ph.D. program or another type of Master’s program, ask the schools directly whether they care about multiple tests and, if so, how they use the multiple data points.

(By the way, for any school communication, I highly recommend attending one or more of the various MBA tours that travel around the country, giving you an opportunity to meet representatives from different schools. There are a bunch of different ones, some of which are tied to specific groups of people, such as women or other underrepresented groups. Ask your questions directly, make some connections, and get the ball rolling!)

What is your goal score?

Based on where you want to apply and how those schools use GMAT scores, you’ll come up with a goal score for yourself. Broadly speaking, you can classify the programs into one of three categories:

—Safety. I’m almost certain to be accepted to this school.

—Regular. I’ve got a good chance to get in, but it’s not a certainty.

—Reach. This school is a stretch, but hey, if I don’t even apply, I definitely won’t make it, right? So I’ll give it a shot.

Your GMAT goal should be above the average for your safety schools and at least at the average for your regular schools. You may not be above average for the reach schools, but you’d still ideally be within that school’s general range.

For the purposes of this discussion, let’s say that your goal score is a 650.

What is your minimum acceptable score?

Your ideal goal is 650, but let’s say that (based on your research) your minimum score is really a 620. You’d still feel comfortable applying to your schools with that score.

So, first, if you do hit a 620 or higher, you are not even going to think about canceling. You’re good to go!

What if you score a 610? Close enough. Keep it.

600?

580?

560…?

See where I’m going with this? At some point, the decision will switch to, “Nope, I’m going to cancel this one.” Where is that point?

Consider the Worst Possible Scenario

Your ideal goal is 650. Your minimum is 620. But what if you just can’t score above 590? You don’t want to take the test and score 590 and cancel, and then sign up again and get another 590 and cancel again, and then take it a third time and get a 550 because you’re so stressed out…and now you’ve taken the test three times and you have no score on your record at all.

The above scenario is even more likely for those who have really high goals. If someone really wants a 730 and keeps canceling 690 scores…that person might never make it to 730.

(You can reinstate your canceled scores at a later date—but you’re going to have to pay to do so. Let’s minimize your expenditure here.)

Know (More) about What the Schools Want

Remember how I said that MBA programs don’t really care if you take the test multiple times? For those programs, then, you don’t actually have to cancel anything. They don’t care. Just keep all your scores.

I know most students won’t be totally comfortable with this. I’m going to try to change your mind, though.

Anecdotally, we have heard that MBA programs, if anything, consider it a positive to see that you tried again. Let’s say that a school’s average is 650. You first score was a little under 650—say, 620 to 640. That’s probably good enough, but you decide to go for it again because you want to hit that average, if possible. This could play out in a couple of ways:

—You score 650+. Yay! You’re at/above the average for that school! Your hard work paid off.

—You increase your score a little but not all the way to the average. You are closer now, and you’ve signaled to the school that you were willing to try hard to succeed. They like to see that.

—You drop below your initial score. You still keep the score to signal to the school that you were willing to keep trying. Yeah, it did drop, but so what; you still have your original (higher) score locked in.

I would definitely keep the score in the first two scenarios. I also think it’s worth it to keep the score in the third scenario, but I would understand if a student didn’t feel comfortable doing so (particularly if you knew you would take the test a third time).

Final Advice: To Keep or Cancel Your GMAT Scores?

So all of the above leads me to this:

—If you’re applying for an MBA and you’re okay with my recommendation just to keep everything, then keep your score no matter what.

—If that idea makes you uneasy, then keep any score that’s within 100 points of your minimum goal score. If you want a minimum score of 650, keep any score of 550 or higher. (If your ideal score is 650 but your minimum is 620, keep anything at 520 or higher.)

Caveat: if your goal score is crazy high (e.g., you want a 780), keep anything within 150 points of your goal. I know, I know, a 630 isn’t anywhere near a 780. But less than 1% of the testing population hits a 780! That’s super ambitious. Be really happy if you get there, but don’t assume that anyone who just “studies enough” will get there.

I Canceled but Now I’m Thinking I Should Reinstate the Score… (or Vice Versa)

As of this writing, here are the details for canceling or reinstating a score after you leave the testing center. (Note that any details, especially pricing, could change in the future—so check mba.com to make sure that nothing has changed.)

If you keep your scores in the testing center but later decide that you want to cancel them, you have 72 hours to do so; after that, you cannot cancel your scores. You’ll have to pay a $25 fee.

If you cancel in the testing center but later decide that you want to reinstate your scores, you can do so as long as the scores are still valid (they expire after 5 years). This will cost you $50.

It costs less to cancel after the fact, but you have a time limit of 72 hours. If you’re just not sure what to do in the testing center, I would recommend keeping the scores, then using the next day or two to think about what to do (and ask others that you trust for their opinion). Then, if you do decide to cancel, you’ll only have to pay $25 to do so.

One Unusual Circumstance in Which You Actually Should Cancel

This last bit won’t apply to 99.9% of people taking the test, but just in case this happens to you, read on.

If you become ill or otherwise feel that you cannot finish while you are at the testing center, then a weird thing happens if you leave the test before getting to that “keep or cancel” screen at the very end. You won’t have any reported scores (since you didn’t finish) but the fact that you showed up to take the test that day will still show up on your official score report. It’s sort of an in-between case with an odd outcome.

So, if this happens to you, here’s what I recommend you do. If you have to leave the testing room (maybe you feel queasy and have to go to the bathroom), do so. Just let the test keep running. If you decide, when you get back, that you can’t keep going, then click through all of the remaining questions randomly to get yourself to the end of the test. On the Keep or Cancel screen, cancel your scores.

In Sum

Know what your goal scores (ideal and minimum) are.

Know what you want to do before you get into the testing room. (For example, tell yourself, “If I score 530 or higher, I’m keeping my score. If I score 520 or lower, I’m canceling.”)

If you just can’t decide at the end, keep the scores. Know that you’ll have 72 hours to change your mind and cancel instead. Get out of the testing room, clear your mind, decide what to do, and move ahead.
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USC Marshall Essay Analysis, 2018–2019 [#permalink]
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FROM mbaMission Blog: USC Marshall Essay Analysis, 2018–2019

For this application season, the University of Southern California (USC) Marshall School of Business is largely maintaining the same application essay approach and prompts it used last year, with just some small tweaks. For the first (mini) essay, applicants must detail their immediate short-term career goal, with little room for any further discussion. For the second (more standard length) required essay, candidates can choose from three prompt options, two of which were held over from the choices presented last year. Given that one of those choices was “You have been hired by the Marshall MBA Admissions Committee to create an essay question for next year’s application,” we cannot help but be curious whether the new option in the list was the brainchild of one of last year’s applicants! We may never know the origin of the new—rather creative and thought provoking—prompt, but we can still do our best to guide you in preparing to write your essay responses. Our full analysis of Marshall’s suite of questions follows.

Essay 1: What is your specific, immediate short-term career goal upon completion of your MBA? Please include an intended position, function, and industry in your response. (word limit: 100)

Quite simply, Marshall wants to know that you have a specific intention in mind and are not just applying to business school with the expectation of figuring everything out later, once you are enrolled in the program. Many MBA applicants have a long-term vision for their career, of course, but with this prompt, Marshall is asking you to prove you have really given thought to the necessary steps in between. Your goal in this short essay is therefore to demonstrate that you do indeed have a plan, not just broad ambition. The school’s other key concern is whether its MBA program is truly the right one to help you attain your stated goal and that you have done the necessary research to discover and confirm this for yourself. Marshall has very little impetus to admit you—and you have very little to attend it—if you will not ultimately be equipped or positioned to pursue your intended goal once you graduate! For example, if you aspire to work in a field or position for which Marshall is not known to have particularly strong courses, professors, or other offerings, or if you want to work for a company that has no recruiting history with the program, it might not be the best choice to get you where you want to go right away.

At just 100 words maximum, your response needs to be fairly forthright. Avoid any generalities and vagueness. Do your research to ensure that Marshall can indeed position you to attain what you intend, and simply spell things out. Given that this essay involves at least one key element of a traditional personal statement, we encourage you to download your free copy of our mbaMission Personal Statement Guide, which provides further advice (with examples!) of how to effectively craft such essays.

Essay 2: Please respond to ONLY ONE of the following essay topics: (word limit: 500)

1) If you could pack the story of your life in a briefcase with 10 items, what items would you pack and why? Respond in list form.

Marshall is jumping right into the creative essay prompt trend with this option! The first thing to keep in mind as you brainstorm for this essay is that the “items” in your virtual briefcase here do not have to be actual, tangible things. “The memory of my grandfather” could be an one, for example. “My sense of humor” could be another. And we want to stress that a briefcase is more than just a simple container that holds things—otherwise, the school could have said “box” or “closet” or such—and carries with it the ideas of both movement and one’s career. Why would you want to bring the items you have listed with you as you move into the next phase of your professional life? What do they provide you, or what have you gained or learned from them?

Think of the many “things” (experiences, skills, values, character traits, responsibilities, friends and family members, heritage, hobbies, goals, etc.) that make you who you are today, in addition to actual, tangible items that are important to you. You want to choose a variety that presents you as a well-rounded individual with an interesting breadth of qualities, experiences, interests, and abilities, so make sure that the items in your suitcase are not too heavily concentrated in just one area of your life. Although the “briefcase” concept implies, as we have said, that the items in some way relate to your professional choices and aspirations, this does not mean that the individual items themselves must all be from your work background. For example, the “memory of my grandfather” item would not likely be from someone’s career, but that candidate’s grandfather may have instilled in him or her a strong work ethic or an interest that is now part of the person’s career path. You also do not have to present the items in chronological order. Furthermore, if you feel that some of your chosen items are more compelling or representative than others, consider putting a few at the beginning of your list and the others at the very end, so they can make the strongest impact.

If you choose this essay option, your final essay will obviously (we hope!) be more than a simple list of ten items. The school gives you 500 words for this essay, so the expectation is clearly that each thing you list will be accompanied by an explanation as to why you have included it among your ten items—why it is so meaningful to you.

2) You are asked to design a course to be taught at the Marshall School of Business. Please provide a title and description for the course.

To craft an effective response to this essay prompt, you will need to start by doing some comprehensive research. The absolute, number-one no-no in this situation would be suggesting a course that already exists at the school—or, just to be safe, that has been offered within the past year or two. So the first step will be getting some initial ideas for subject areas, but the immediate (and indispensable) second step will be taking some time to thoroughly read through the school’s current class offerings in those areas as well as those from last year and even the year before.

You do not need to be an expert in the subject matter of the hypothetical class you pitch. After all, Marshall is not asking you to teach it, simply to envision it and explain its potential value. Naturally, the course needs to be fitting for MBA-level study/students and be relevant in some way to current or projected business practices. A good route to consider would be to simply think about what kind of class you would like to take and why. What do you want to learn more about while you are in business school? What skills do you feel you need to learn to be successful going forward? Identify this kind of information and imagine what a course that addresses those interests and needs would entail and look like. Then compare your newly envisioned class against what is already available and tweak your proposal as necessary to ensure it is distinct from the school’s existing options.

Be sure to go beyond simply describing the course (and do not forget to give the class an actual title!) and dedicate a few lines of your essay to how the class would be helpful to an MBA student. Perhaps, for example, offer ideas for career paths the course would be well suited for.

3) You have been hired by the Marshall MBA Admissions Committee to create an essay question for next year’s application. Please state the question and answer it.

In a way, the admissions committee seems to be asking you, “What do you want to tell us about yourself and your candidacy?” and hoping to gain an idea of your level of creativity at the same time. A number of top MBA programs have offered some rather clever and innovative essay prompts in recent years—signature songs, six-word stories, random lists, photo selections, tables of contents, etc.—but Marshall may be restricting your creative side a bit in this case by stipulating that you must actually respond to your proposed question, not just imagine it. So if you plan to go the imaginative route, be sure to craft an option that you can then offer a strong essay response to, but keep in mind that you can also just offer a prompt that gets at an important element of your profile that you want to share with the admissions committee, with no special bells or whistles.

That said, because you also have the optional essay, if you want or need it, with which to address any “additional information” you believe the school needs to know to evaluate you thoroughly, we think this essay prompt may be best reserved for applicants who do have a strong imaginative or creative bent. Consider all your options for the school’s Essay 2 to make sure that you are choosing the one that allows you to share your most compelling stories.

Optional Essay: Please provide any additional information that will enhance our understanding of your candidacy for the program. (word limit: 250) 

In general, we believe candidates should use a school’s optioal essay to explain confusing or problematic issues in their candidacy, which this prompt does indeed allow. So, if you need to, use this opportunity to address any questions the admissions committee might have about your profile—a poor grade or overall GPA, a low GMAT or GRE score, a gap in your work experience, etc. Consider downloading our mbaMission Optional Essays Guide, in which we offer detailed advice (and multiple examples) on how best to approach the optional essay to mitigate any problem areas in your application.

However, Marshall clearly leaves the door open for you to discuss any other information about your candidacy that you feel may be pivotal or particularly compelling—that you think the admissions committee truly needs to know to be able to evaluate you fully and effectively. We caution you against submitting a response to this prompt just because you fear that not doing so would somehow count against you, though. Remember that with each additional essay you write, you are asking the admissions committee to do extra work on your behalf, so you must make sure that added time is warranted. If you decide to use this essay to impart information that you believe would render your application incomplete if omitted, strive to keep your submission brief and on point.
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Alumni Generosity and Research-to-Practice at Dartmouth Tuck [#permalink]
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FROM mbaMission Blog: Alumni Generosity and Research-to-Practice at Dartmouth Tuck

The Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth has approximately 10,300 living alumni, and although that figure may sound small compared with a larger school’s alumni base, numerous students and graduates we have interviewed report that Tuck has an active and close-knit alumni community. Through their continued involvement with the school as mentors, visiting executives, recruiting contacts, and internship providers, Tuck alumni maintain an open channel between the MBA program and the business world. The Tuck students with whom we have spoken cannot say enough about the strength of student-alumni interactions, emphasizing that the vitality of Tuck’s close-knit community endures long after graduation.

One second-year student shared that he had had pretty high expectations with regard to the school’s alumni network “but still underestimated how strong the network can be.” He explained, “The connections were instant. I received same-day responses, all the time. There is a strong pay-it-forward mentality and a genuine interest in seeing people from Tuck do well. Alums go out of their way to help with networking, job preparation, anything.”

Tuck alumni also stay connected to the school through its annual fund-raising campaign. The school reportedly boasts the highest giving rate of all U.S. MBA programs. Tuck noted that its giving rate is “more than double the average giving rate of other business schools” in an August 2015 news article on the school’s website, and in an August 2016 article, the school boasted, “More than two-thirds of Tuck’s [alumni] gave to their alma mater this year, continuing the school’s tradition of unparalleled alumni loyalty and participation.” This pattern continued in 2017, when more than two-thirds of the Tuck alumni pool donated to the school, for the 11th year in a row. In fact, the school raised a record $31.1 million in 2017. “I continue to be humbled and inspired by [Tuck alumni’s] deep generosity,” Dean Matthew J. Slaughter said in a July 2017 Tuck news article regarding the new giving record.

Tuck takes pride in not only its active alumni pool, but also its close-knit community and small faculty-to-student ratio. The school’s Research-to-Practice Seminars complement these characteristics and allow incoming students to quickly get acquainted with the Tuck culture. An article on the school’s Tuck Today website explained that “International Entrepreneurship” was the first of several such seminars designed to give students insight into a real-world business issue. The seminars were conceived as a key component of the school’s strategic five-year plan, called Tuck 2012. The courses bring together a small group of second-year students with top faculty for a “deep dive” into a specific topic. Research-to-Practice Seminars that have been offered in the past include the following:

  • “Corporate Takeovers”
  • “Deconstructing Apple”
  • “Management of Investment Portfolios”
  • “Marketing Good and Evil: Consumer Moral Judgment and Well-Being”
  • “Strategy in Innovation Ecosystems”
  • “Time in the Consumer Mind”
For more information on other defining characteristics of the MBA program at Dartmouth Tuck or one of 16 other top business schools, please check out the free mbaMission Insider’s Guides.
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MBA Admissions Myths Destroyed: I Must Have a Recommendation from My S [#permalink]
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FROM mbaMission Blog: MBA Admissions Myths Destroyed: I Must Have a Recommendation from My Supervisor
MBA admissions committees often say they understand if an applicant does not have a recommendation from a supervisor, but do they really mean it? Even if they say it is okay, if everyone else has a supervisor writing, not having one would put you at a disadvantage, right? Not quite so.

We at mbaMission estimate that one of every five applicants has an issue with one of their current supervisors that prevents them from asking for a recommendation. Common issues include the following:

  • The applicant has had only a brief tenure with his/her current firm.
  • Disclosing one’s plans to attend business school could compromise potential promotions, bonuses, or salary increases.
  • The supervisor is “too busy” to help and either refuses the request or tells the applicant to write the recommendation him/herself, which the applicant is unprepared to do.
  • The supervisor does not believe in the MBA degree and would not be supportive of the applicant’s path.
  • The supervisor is a poor manager and refuses to assist junior staff.
  • The candidate is an entrepreneur or works in a family business and thus lacks a credibly objective supervisor.
We have explained before that admissions offices have no reason to disadvantage candidates who cannot ask their supervisors to be recommenders over those who have secured recommendations from supervisors. What incentive would they have to “disqualify” approximately 20% of applicants for reasons beyond their control?

Therefore, if you cannot ask your supervisor for his/her assistance, do not worry about your situation, but seek to remedy it. Start by considering your alternatives—a past employer, mentor, supplier, client, legal counsel, representative from an industry association, or anyone else who knows your work particularly well. Then, once you have made your alternate selection, briefly explain the nature of your situation and your relationship with this recommender in your optional essay. As long as you explain your choice, the admissions committee will understand your situation.
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Professor Profiles: Jeremy Siegel, the Wharton School of the Universit [#permalink]
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FROM mbaMission Blog: Professor Profiles: Jeremy Siegel, the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania

Many MBA applicants feel that they are purchasing a brand when they choose a business school. However, the educational experience you will have is what is crucial to your future, and no one will affect your education more than your professors. Today, we profile Jeremy Siegel from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.

Jeremy Siegel is arguably one of the most recognizable and renowned professors at Wharton, and not just because he regularly appears on CNN, CNBC, and NPR to weigh in on the financial markets. One first-year student we interviewed referred to Siegel as “THE professor at Wharton.” Siegel, who has taught at the school since 1976 and is the Russell E. Palmer Professor of Finance, combines his expertise with a passion for teaching. On the long list of teaching awards he has received is Bloomberg Businessweek’s Best Business School Professor (worldwide) accolade in 1994. What is more, Siegel’s expertise gives him almost unparalleled street cred in the eyes of Wharton students—not an easy lot to win over on the topic of the stock market. At the beginning of each class session for his macroeconomics course, Siegel pulls up live market data and quickly interprets what is going on in the markets that day. Interestingly, even students who are not enrolled in this course commonly stand at the back of the room to watch this summary.

Siegel has been recognized often for his writings, having won numerous best article awards, and is a bestselling author. The Washington Post named his book Stocks for the Long Run: The Definitive Guide to Financial Market Returns and Long-Term Investment Strategies “one of the ten-best investment books of all time.” And in 2005, Bloomberg Businessweek named another of Siegel’s works, The Future for Investors: Why the Tried and the True Triumph Over the Bold and the New, one of the best business books of the year. Also in 2005, Siegel received the prestigious Nicholas Molodovsky Award from CFA Institute, awarded to “those individuals who have made outstanding contributions of such significance as to change the direction of the profession and to raise it to higher standards of accomplishment.”

For information on other defining characteristics of the MBA program at Wharton or any of 16 other top business schools, please check out the free mbaMission Insider’s Guides.
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Convey a Confident Tone and Avoid Fawning in Your MBA Application Essa [#permalink]
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FROM mbaMission Blog: Convey a Confident Tone and Avoid Fawning in Your MBA Application Essays
In your MBA application essays, you must ensure that the tone you use allows the admissions committee to readily recognize your certainty and self-confidence. Being clear and direct about who you are and how you envision your future is vital. Consider the following example statements:

Weak: “I now have adequate work experience and hope to pursue an MBA.”

Strong: “Through my work experience, I have gained both breadth and depth, providing me with a solid, practical foundation for pursuing my MBA.”

——

Weak: “I now want to pursue an MBA.”

Strong: “I am certain that now is the ideal time for me to pursue my MBA.”

——

Weak: “I have good quantitative skills and will succeed academically.”

Strong: “I have already mastered the quantitative skills necessary to thrive in my MBA studies.”

——

Weak: “With my MBA, I hope to establish myself as a leader.”

Strong: “I am certain that with my MBA, I will propel myself to the next levels of leadership.”

The key in all these examples is the use of language that clearly projects self-confidence. Instead of “hope,” use “will”; rather than saying you have “good” skills, show “mastery.” Although you should avoid sounding arrogant, by being assertive and direct, you will inspire confidence in your reader and ensure that you make a positive impression.

Your target MBA programs certainly want to know that you identify with them. However, this does not need to be a running theme throughout your essays or your entire application. Unless a business school explicitly requests this kind of information—for example, by asking what you are most passionate about and how that passion will positively affect the school—we generally recommend that candidates only discuss their connection with their target MBA program via their personal statements (“What are your short- and long-term goals, and how will [our school] allow you to achieve them?”).

For example, in response to a school’s question about leadership or putting knowledge into action, you would not need to discuss how the school will help you further develop your leadership skills or how you will continue to be an active learner when you are a member of the Class of 2021, even though these topics reflect core values that each school embraces. Although we cannot assert this as an absolute, we find that in most cases, such statements come across as insincere or fawning—the very opposite of the effect you want.
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Common GMAT Concerns: Taking the Test Again, and Dealing with Low AWA [#permalink]
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FROM mbaMission Blog: Common GMAT Concerns: Taking the Test Again, and Dealing with Low AWA Scores
When candidates who have already taken the GMAT exam once ask us whether they should take the test again, we always reply with this key question: “Do you think you can do better?” If the individual does indeed believe that he/she can improve, the next question we inevitably get is “What do business schools think of multiple scores?”

Fortunately, most MBA admissions committees do not frown on candidates taking the GMAT more than once. Many applicants feel that they have to be “perfect” the first time and that any subsequent test they take—particularly if they receive a lower score on it—might be damaging to their candidacy. This is not the case. Dartmouth Tuck, for one, anticipates that applicants will take the exam more than once and openly states its willingness to “consider your highest quantitative and highest verbal scores,” if they occur on separate tests. Meanwhile, other programs have been known to call candidates and tell them that if they can increase their GMAT scores, they will be offered admission.

Accepting a candidate’s highest GMAT scores is actually in an MBA program’s best interest, because doing so will raise the school’s GMAT average, which is then reported to rankings bodies such as Bloomberg Businessweek and U.S. News & World Report and could positively affect the school’s position in these surveys. So, do not be afraid to take the test two or even three times. It can only help.

Now, if you took the GMAT and feel like you finally “nailed” the exam but later learn that your score on the Analytical Writing Assessment (AWA), the essay portion, is low, should you panic?

In short, the answer is no. Although we have always encouraged business school candidates to do the best they can on the AWA, the truth is that we have never been told by an admissions officer—nor, as far as we know, has a candidate ever been told in a feedback session—that the AWA score is a factor in a school’s decisions. Generally, the AWA is not used to evaluate candidates but to detect fraud.

If, hypothetically, you had tremendous difficulty expressing yourself via the AWA essays but wrote like a Pulitzer Prize winner in your application essays, the school would get suspicious and begin to compare the two. Not to worry—the schools are not punitive and are not acting as fraud squads. Your AWA essays are expected to be unpolished, so no one will seek out your file if you did your best in both areas. However, if an enormous discrepancy arises between the two, the AWA serves a purpose.

So, if you did well on the GMAT and have a low AWA score, that is unfortunate, but it will not be the difference in a school’s decision about your candidacy. Rest easy—as long as you truly did write both!
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MBAs for Professionals at Villanova School of Business and Krannert Sc [#permalink]
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FROM mbaMission Blog: MBAs for Professionals at Villanova School of Business and Krannert School of Management

Villanova School of Business

In 2013, the Villanova School of Business (VSB) received a $50M gift from alumnus James C. Davis, founder of recruitment company Allegis Group, and his wife, Kim. The donation—part of a $600M capital campaign—was the largest in the school’s history and was reportedly “earmarked to improve academic and career advising, increase internship and study abroad opportunities, perform technology upgrades, and provide scholarships,” according to Bloomberg Businessweek. VSB also planned to use a portion of the funds to “beef up its faculty roster to include more professors focused on teaching as opposed to research.”

With a satellite campus in Center City, Philadelphia, VSB specializes in part-time programs for working professionals, allowing them to enjoy the benefits of a full-time curriculum without leaving their job. In this vein, the school offers an accelerated, two-year, part-time Fast Track degree option, which meets twice a week, as well as the more customizable Flex Track degree option, which typically takes three years to complete and accommodates varying course loads.

One advantage of the accelerated option is the opportunity to partake in the school’s two-part consulting practicum project, which includes the “Social Enterprise Consulting Practicum” and the “Global Practicum” capstone courses—each lasting 14 weeks. In the former practicum, students work with local nonprofit organizations to identify strategies in such areas as branding, funding, and membership retention. Alternatively, the latter practicum entails working with a multinational corporation to gain firsthand experience analyzing market issues. VSB also hosts a variety of elective international immersion courses, through which students may travel abroad over winter break or during the summer.

Purdue University’s Krannert School of Management

Another option for professionals is Purdue University’s Krannert School of Management, whose two executive MBA programs focus on helping professionals gain their MBAs while maintaining a career. Students can choose from the traditional MBA program, which features five residencies at Krannert and one abroad, or the IMM Global Executive MBA program, during which students are divided into cohorts and take part in residencies in each of the six IMM partner schools (in addition to Krannert). Locations for the residencies include Brazil, China, and Italy. Both of these executive MBA programs take place over the course of 19 months and include online learning modules in addition to in-person studies.
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MBA Admissions Myths Destroyed: Why Worry? I Volunteered! [#permalink]
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FROM mbaMission Blog: MBA Admissions Myths Destroyed: Why Worry? I Volunteered!
Some MBA applicants mistakenly view community service as simply a prerequisite for getting into a top program and sign up for volunteer opportunities without considering whether the organization or cause they are choosing is actually a reasonable fit for them. Community service is generally something positive to highlight in your application, given that it demonstrates altruism and frequently indicates leadership skills as well—attributes that may not be revealed in your work experience. However, it is not a panacea or a mere box to be checked. As you contemplate your involvements, be aware that “hours served” are not as important as the spirit of your participation and the extent of your impact.

We encourage all MBA candidates to carefully consider their community experiences in the same way they would examine and evaluate their professional or entrepreneurial opportunities. Although people can sometimes make mistakes in their career path, most gravitate toward areas where they can excel, justifiably to further their own interests. So, for example, if you do not enjoy one-on-one interactions, you likely would not consider a position in sales, because you could never thrive in such a position. In contrast, if working in sales were to bring out the best in you, you just might earn promotions, think of new sales techniques, train others, etc. Success stories develop as a by-product of performance.

This reasoning also applies to community service. For example, if you have always enjoyed a particularly close relationship with your grandmother and want to share this kind of positive experience with others, you might decide to volunteer at a retirement home, spending time with seniors. If you became quite passionate about your work there, you might then get others involved, expand the volunteer program at the home, take greater leadership in the program, and demonstrate your initiative and enthusiasm in other ways. However, if you are not that passionate about spending time with the elderly, but you happen to live near a retirement home, volunteering there just for convenience would probably be a mistake. In such a situation, you would lack the spirit of commitment/adventure necessary to ensure that you make an impact—and therefore have a story worth telling the admissions committees.

Whether you are already committed to an activity or are just considering becoming involved in one, carefully determine whether you have the mind-set and personal interest necessary to truly commit yourself to your chosen cause and make a difference. If putting in hours is the only commitment you can make, you will just be wasting your time.
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How to Build the Ideal Resume for Your MBA Application [#permalink]
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FROM mbaMission Blog: How to Build the Ideal Resume for Your MBA Application
Present Both Responsibilities and Results

In your MBA resume, be sure to showcase your accomplishments, rather than merely stating the responsibilities of your position. When your responsibilities are presented with no accompanying results, the reader has no understanding of whether you were effective in the role you are describing. For example, consider the following entry, in which only responsibilities are offered:

2012–Present Household Products Group, Flocter & Gramble Cincinnati, Ohio

Brand Manager

  • Responsible for managing a $10M media campaign, supervising a staff of five junior brand managers, monitoring daily sales volumes, and ensuring the consistent supply of product from five production facilities in three countries.
The reader is left wondering, “Was the media campaign successful? Did the staff of five progress? Did sales volumes increase? Did the supply of products reach its destination?” When this one long bullet point is instead broken down into individual bulleted entries that elaborate on each task and show clear results, the reader learns not just about the candidate’s responsibilities, but also about that person’s ultimate effectiveness and successes.

2012–Present Flocter & Gramble Cincinnati, Ohio

Brand Manager

  • Initiated $10M television/Internet “Island Vacation” promotion introducing new Shine brand detergent, surpassing first-year sales targets within three months.
  • Mentored and supervised five junior brand managers, each of whom was promoted to brand manager (company traditionally promotes 25%).
  • Analyzed daily sales volumes and identified opportunity to increase price point in Midwest, resulting in 26% margin improvement and $35M in new profits.
  • Secured “safety supply” of vital chemicals from alternate suppliers, ensuring 99% order fulfillment.
By comparing the first entry with the second, you can see how much more effective an accomplishment-driven resume is than one that simply lists responsibilities.

Demonstrate Nonquantifiable Results

Presenting quantifiable results in your resume is preferred, because such results clearly convey your success in the actions you undertook. However, in some instances, you simply cannot quantify your success. In such cases, you can instead demonstrate nonquantifiable or even potential results. Consider the following examples:

  • Persuaded management to review existing operations; currently leading Manufacturing Review Committee, which will table its final report in June 2019.
  • Established divisional continuing education series, noted on review as “crucial” and “game changing.”
  • Initiated biweekly “Tuesday at Five” team social event, resulting in enhanced workplace morale.
In each of these bullet points, the results of the writer’s actions are not measurable, but they are nonetheless important. The accomplishments, while “soft,” are conveyed as clearly positive.

Keep It Concise

Ideally, your resume should be only one page long; admissions committees generally expect and appreciate the conciseness of this format. If you choose to submit a resume consisting of two pages or more, your reader may have difficulty scanning it and identifying (and remembering) important facts. With these space constraints in mind, we offer two fairly straightforward “space saver” ideas:

  • Do not include a mission statement at the beginning of your resume. Your mission in this case is to get into the MBA program to which you are applying—and, of course, the admissions committee already knows this! A mission statement will take up precious space that can be used more effectively for other purposes.
  • Your address should take up no more than one line of your resume. Many applicants will “stack” their address, using four, five, or even six lines, as if they were writing an address on an envelope. Consider how much space an address occupies when presented in the following format:
Jeremy Shinewald

138 West 25th Street

7th Floor

New York, NY 10024

646-485-8844

jeremy@mbamission.com

You just wasted six lines of real estate! To help whittle your resume down to one page, try putting your address on just one line so you can save five others for valuable bullets.

And, while we are discussing the document’s length, resist the urge to shrink your font or margins to make your resume fit on one page. Your font should be no smaller than 10-point type, and your margins should be no smaller than 1″ on either side and 0.75″ at the top and bottom. Rather than trying to squeeze too much information onto the page, commit yourself to showcasing only your most important accomplishments that tell your story best.
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Professor Profiles: Jeffrey Carr, NYU Stern School of Business [#permalink]
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FROM mbaMission Blog: Professor Profiles: Jeffrey Carr, NYU Stern School of Business

Many MBA applicants feel that they are purchasing a brand when they choose a business school. However, the educational experience you will have is what is crucial to your future, and no one will affect your education more than your professors. Today, we profile Jeffrey Carr from New York University’s (NYU’s) Leonard N. Stern School of Business.

Having taught at Stern for more than a decade as an adjunct associate professor (earning him the 1996 Stern/Citibank Teacher of the Year Award), Jeffrey Carr joined Stern’s full-time faculty in 2007 and is now a clinical professor of marketing and entrepreneurship. Carr also serves as the director of the NYU Stern Fashion and Luxury Lab, which was launched in 2017. He served formerly as the executive director of the Berkley Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation and has garnered a reputation as one of the school’s most respected marketing experts, featured by such major news outlets as NBC and the New York Times. Carr is president of Marketing Foundations Inc. and has worked on projects for such companies as Booz Allen Hamilton, IBM, General Electric, Pfizer, Kodak, Time Inc., and Unilever.

As one first year we interviewed said of his experience at Stern, “So far, the most impressive class has been ‘Marketing’ with Jeff Carr,” adding, “He’s super engaging and makes you think more about the consequences of your actions in marketing than simply teaching you the tools. The class structure is very informal, but all of the students are learning a ton.”

For more information about NYU Stern and 16 other top-ranked business schools, check out the free mbaMission Insider’s Guides.
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