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The mbaMission Blog

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Stanford Graduate School of Business Essay Analysis, 2015–2016 [#permalink]

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New post 14 May 2015, 15:01
FROM mbaMission Blog: Stanford Graduate School of Business Essay Analysis, 2015–2016
We hate to read too much into minutiae, but the Stanford Graduate School of Business (GSB) has expanded its maximum word count allowance by 50 words this year, so that applicants now have 1,150 words with which to work. The school suggests that candidates use those additional words for their second essay, though applicants in fact have the leeway to allocate them however they please. We have to wonder whether Stanford did not see the depth of knowledge it had hoped or expected for its “Why Stanford?” essay last year, when fewer words were available. Perhaps the school wanted to give applicants a little more room in which to show that they really know what the GSB is all about. Aside from the slight change in total word count, the school’s essay questions have not changed at all. Here we go…

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Essay A: What matters most to you, and why?
(School-suggested word count of 750)

For this essay, we would like you to:

  • Focus on the “why” rather than the “what.”
  • Do some deep self-examination, so you can genuinely illustrate who you are and how you came to be the person you are.
  • Share the insights, experiences, and lessons that shaped your perspectives, rather than focusing merely on what you’ve done or accomplished.
  • Write from the heart, and illustrate how a person, situation, or event has influenced you.
When candidates ask us, “What should I write for what matters most to me?,” we offer a pretty simple tip: start brainstorming for this essay by asking yourself that very question: “What matters most to me?” This might seem like obvious advice, of course, but many applicants get flustered by the question—often believing that an actual “right” answer exists that they must identify—and never pause to actually consider their sincere responses, which are typically the most compelling.

We therefore advise that you brainstorm in depth and push yourself to explore the psychological and philosophical motivations behind your goals and achievements—behind who you are today. We cannot emphasize this enough: do not make a snap decision about the content of this essay. Once you have identified what you believe is an appropriate theme, discuss your idea(s) with those with whom you are closest and whose input you respect. Doing so can help validate deeply personal and authentic themes, leading to an essay that truly stands out.

Once you have fully examined your options and identified your main themes, do not simply provide a handful of supporting anecdotes—or worse, recycle the stories you used in a similar essay for another school. A strong essay response to this question will involve a true exploration of the themes you have chosen and reveal a thorough analysis of decisions, motives and successes/failures, with a constant emphasis on how you conduct yourself. If you are merely telling stories and trying to tie in your preconceived conclusions, you are most likely forcing a theme on your reader rather than analyzing your experiences, and this will be transparent to any experienced admissions reader. In short, be sure to fully consider and develop your most sincere answer(s), outline your essay accordingly and then infuse your writing with your personality, thoughts, feelings and experiences.

Stanford encourages you to given special attention to why the subject you have chosen to write about is the most important to you. This should be clear in your essay—it should be implied by what you are exploring. If you need to explicitly declare, “And what matters most to me is…,” your essay is most likely not making a strong enough point. A well-constructed essay that is infused with your values and motivation and that clearly conveys why you made certain decisions should effectively and implicitly reveal the “why” behind your chosen topic—and will almost always make a stronger point.

One final note is that you can write about a popular theme as long as you truly own the experience. However, the odds of you writing about a theme that the Stanford GSB’s admissions committee has never read about before are not very high. You can discuss whatever you truly care about in your essay, but you absolutely must support your topic with a wealth of experience that shows how you have uniquely lived it. Therefore, for example, you cannot successfully write about “making a difference” if you have volunteered only occasionally, but if you have truly made a significant difference in someone’s life, then the topic is no longer a cliché—it is true to who you are. So, focus less on trying to choose the “right” subject for your essay and more on identifying one that is personal and authentic to you. If you write powerfully about your topic and connect it directly to your experiences and values, then your essay should be a winner.

Essay 2: Why Stanford? (School-suggested word count of 400)

Enlighten us on how earning your MBA at Stanford will enable you to realize your ambitions.

  • Explain your decision to pursue graduate education in management.
  • Explain the distinctive opportunities you will pursue at Stanford.
One of our favorite admissions quotes is from Stanford’s assistant dean for MBA admissions, Derrick Bolton, who declared, “Resist the urge to ‘package’ yourself in order to come across in a way you think Stanford wants” (emphasis added). What the admissions committee really wants is to know what and/or who you want to be. The school does not have a preferred job or industry in mind and expect to hear that you plan to fill that space—the admissions committee wants to understand your true vision and understand why you feel Stanford is necessary in facilitating this vision. If you try to present yourself as someone or something you are not, you will ultimately undermine your candidacy. Trust the admissions committee on this one!

Because Personal Statements are similar from one application to the next, we have produced the mbaMission Personal Statement Guide, which helps applicants write this style of essay for any school. We offer this guide to candidates free of charge. Please feel free to download your copy today.

And for a thorough exploration of the Stanford GSB’s academic program/merits, defining characteristics, crucial statistics, social life, academic environment and more, please check out the mbaMission Insider’s Guide to the Stanford Graduate School of Business.
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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mbaMission

Website: http://www.mbamission.com
Blog: http://www.mbamission.com/blog
mbaMission Insiders Guides: http://www.mbamission.com/guides.php?category=insiders
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Diamonds in the Rough: Georgia Tech’s Scheller College of Business [#permalink]

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New post 14 May 2015, 19:00
FROM mbaMission Blog: Diamonds in the Rough: Georgia Tech’s Scheller College of Business
MBA applicants can get carried away with rankings. In this series, we profile amazing programs at business schools that are typically ranked outside the top 15.

The Scheller College of Business at Georgia Tech may rival MIT Sloan and Carnegie Mellon’s Tepper School of Business with respect to its focus on the direct application of Internet technology to global business problems. The school’s rather small (approximately 70 students each year) and innovation-focused program was nevertheless ranked 28th among full-time MBA programs by Bloomberg Businessweek in 2014.

Situated in the heart of Technology Square in Midtown Atlanta, Scheller offers students numerous networking and innovation resources within the city’s high-tech business community, including the Advanced Technology Development Center business incubator. Billing itself as “the nation’s largest and most comprehensive university-based program of business and industry assistance, technology commercialization, and economic development” on its Web site, the Enterprise Innovation Institute, or EI2, also provides students with resources for career options at the intersection of business and technology. As an indicator of the school’s overall strengths in information technology and operations management, a large portion of Scheller’s student body tends to come from science, technology, engineering, and math backgrounds (47% of the Class of 2016).
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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mbaMission

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Blog: http://www.mbamission.com/blog
mbaMission Insiders Guides: http://www.mbamission.com/guides.php?category=insiders
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Friday Factoid: Chicago Booth for Marketing? [#permalink]

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New post 15 May 2015, 09:01
FROM mbaMission Blog: Friday Factoid: Chicago Booth for Marketing?
You may be surprised to learn that Chicago Booth is making inroads into an area that its crosstown rival (Northwestern Kellogg) is known to dominate: marketing. Through the James M. Kilts Center—named for the Chicago Booth alumnus who was formerly CEO of Gillette and Nabisco (as well as chair of A.C. Nielsen)—Chicago Booth offers students roughly ten marketing electives. In particular, the school is growing its experiential opportunities in the marketing field, with students taking part in marketing management labs (semester-long consulting projects) at Abbott, Barclays, and Honeywell. Further, professors in the department saw opportunities for increased practical involvement and created “hybrid” classes in “Marketing Research” and “Consumer Behavior” that involve a lecture component but also allow students to work on shorter-term consulting projects. Students can also sign up to be paired with an alumni marketing mentor or can elect to participate in “day-at” visits to major marketing firms and companies such as PepsiCo, Wrigley, and Kraft. Although Kellogg’s reputation for excellence in marketing is firmly intact, we have to assume that the folks in Evanston are occasionally glancing over their shoulder to see whether Chicago Booth is continuing to gain ground.

For a thorough exploration of what Chicago Booth and other top business schools have to offer, please check out the mbaMission Insider’s Guides.
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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mbaMission

Website: http://www.mbamission.com
Blog: http://www.mbamission.com/blog
mbaMission Insiders Guides: http://www.mbamission.com/guides.php?category=insiders
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mbaMission Holds Annual Consultant Conference in Chicago [#permalink]

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New post 15 May 2015, 14:00
FROM mbaMission Blog: mbaMission Holds Annual Consultant Conference in Chicago
Earlier this week, we hosted our annual mbaMission consultant conference, which we always schedule for right before the start of admissions season. During the conference, our consultants share best practices, transfer knowledge, and renew their bonds with one another. Why are we telling you this? We believe this kind of ongoing training and interpersonal connection within our consultant team is important in our clients’ success—and therefore important to you as you consider your admissions consulting options!

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The mbaMission annual consultant conference is something that sets us apart from the other admissions consulting firms out there. Because the consultants at most firms work with MBA clients only part-time while maintaining a separate full-time job, they could not take the time away from their true careers to host or attend such a conference. At mbaMission, however, admissions consulting is our sole job and focus—so we can dedicate this time to gather and ensure that we are at the top of our game, to benefit you.

We at mbaMission are absolutely committed to hiring, training, and continuously educating the best admissions consultants in the world. And we are truly a team—our consultants know each other well, not just because they see each other face-to-face at our yearly conference, but also because they connect at our weekly Tuesday meetings, collaborate on admissions-related presentations throughout the year, and communicate every day via email, Skype, and other media. Our conference is a manifestation of our team approach.

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So, what did we accomplish at our conference this year? Here are just some of the sessions we held:

  • Brainstorming the One-Essay Application
  • Best Practices for Thoroughly Informative Free Client Consultations
  • Social Media Watch: The Details That Elude Applicants and Kill Applications
  • MBA Career Coaches: Integrating Career Planning into Applications
  • M7 Budget Watch: Understanding Where MBA Programs’ Proposed Student Budgets Fall Short
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Over two days, we learned a lot, enjoyed each other’s company, and strengthened our team’s bond—and that last element is a positive for you, too! Because our team members can call on one another with questions and to exchange guidance, you benefit not just from your personal consultant’s experience and knowledge, but from that of our entire company. Our full-time team was on display this week, and it was quite the sight—20+ committed professionals learning, sharing, and enjoying their work!
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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mbaMission

Website: http://www.mbamission.com
Blog: http://www.mbamission.com/blog
mbaMission Insiders Guides: http://www.mbamission.com/guides.php?category=insiders
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Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Sloan) Essay Analysis, 2015–201 [#permalink]

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New post 16 May 2015, 08:00
FROM mbaMission Blog: Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Sloan) Essay Analysis, 2015–2016
We imagine that any applicants to the MIT Sloan School of Management this year who were familiar with the school’s essay questions for last year breathed a huge sigh of relief when they saw that the “write your own recommendation letter” prompt had disappeared. However, after enjoying that sigh of relief, they probably found themselves a little perplexed—what happened to all the essays? Yes, MIT Sloan seems to have made its essays disappear… or did it? In some ways, candidates are still facing the possibility of writing three essays, though one is only required of candidates who are invited to interview, and another is “optional.” Why is “optional” in quotation marks? Well, we expect that with just 500 words in which to discuss a single recent accomplishment, most applicants will feel that they have a lot more to say, and the optional essay is the only place left to say it!

Our analysis follows…

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We have one required essay at the time of submission: Tell us about a recent success you had: How did you accomplish this? Who else was involved? What hurdles did you encounter? What type of impact did this have? (500 words or fewer)


We must start our analysis of this question by focusing on the word “recent.” What does recent mean in this context? We would presume that it generally means within the past year, but given that MIT Sloan does not explicitly say “within the past year,” you can of course use your discretion. The key here is that the admissions committee wants to learn about the contemporary version of you, so you should avoid hearkening too far back in your professional history, because then you would be discussing a version of yourself that you no longer are. In short, Sloan wants to hear about an experience that reflects your current abilities.

With only 500 words to tell your story, you do not have space to “wind up” your narrative by offering a lengthy introduction. Just launch right into your story, and let it do the work for you. From the beginning, focus on explaining what you did rather than offering broad statements about how you were performing. Your job is to make an impression on your reader, and this is directly tied to the reader’s ability to visualize what you have achieved. If your essay is just a collection of declarative statements—“I am an effective leader because I take charge of challenging situations”—your admissions reader will have no proof that you are in fact what you say you are. The details you provide will serve as this necessary evidence.

One of MIT Sloan’s questions within this prompt is particularly crucial: “What hurdles did you encounter?” If you faced no obstacles along your path to success, then your accomplishment was not really much of a success after all, because you did not have to earn it. As you write your narrative, show that you pushed yourself and overcame challenges—that you fought for your win. If your story has no arc, you will not ultimately reveal much about your character. Of course, your story should not be about fighting people but about contending with challenges, whether timing, budgetary, interpersonal, or otherwise. You do not need to have been radical in your approach to overcoming difficulties and setbacks, but showing that you were creative or industrious is recommended. For this essay, the path to achievement is just as important as the achievement itself.

A second (short-answer) question will be asked of those invited to interview: The mission of the MIT Sloan School of Management is to develop principled, innovative leaders who improve the world and to generate ideas that advance management practice. Please share with us something about your past that aligns with this mission. (250 words or fewer)

A word to the wise: carefully consider this question as you write your other essay(s). You do not want to submit your other essay(s), receive an invitation to interview, and then discover that you have no compelling stories left to share for this essay because you have already used them all—perhaps via the optional essay, in particular. Thinking optimistically, you will need to reserve this space for later. In short, you are applying to MIT Sloan with the intention of being accepted, so anticipate that you will get that interview invitation along the way.

Now, you may read this essay question and think, “Can I really provide an anecdote that will lead someone to conclude that I ‘improve the world’ or ‘generate ideas that advance management practice’?” That indeed sounds like a tall order, but this essay prompt is not as daunting as it may seem, because the focus is on the future. Sloan’s admissions committee is asking you to draw on past experience to show that you are prepared to support the school’s mission going forward. Rather than fretting about the latter part of the question, focus on the first part, and provide examples of how you have displayed principled or innovative leadership.

The phrasing of the question is broad enough that your examples can come from the professional, community, or personal sphere. All these areas are equally valid. What is important is that you offer a clear narrative, so that—again!—your reader is able to truly visualize your actions and motivations. The admissions committee wants to learn about you through your stories, not hear platitudes about management. As you share your story, remember to connect it to the school’s mission at the end of your essay, clearly linking your stories to the school’s goal statement. Before your hands even touch the keyboard, really contemplate how your experiences relate to that mission.

We will also continue to ask the open-ended, optional question: The Admissions Committee invites you to share anything else you would like us to know about you, in any format. If you choose to use a multimedia format, please host the information on a website and provide us the URL.

Don’t we all just love a blank page?! (Note the sarcasm.) Answering this question is not absolutely necessary, but doing so is probably wise. How can you know for sure whether you need to? Before you start writing your response to any of the school’s essay questions, brainstorm thoroughly and create a list of experiences and aspects of your candidacy that you believe are important for the admissions committee to know about you. Then, as you contemplate and craft your essays for the first two questions, cross the ideas you choose off your list of potential stories and points. If a few items remain on your list that you believe are crucial to reveal to the admissions committee, then you should most likely write this “essay.”

The admissions committee states that you may use any format for this submission, but do not feel that you must use some form of multimedia—and certainly do not just copy and paste your creative essay for NYU Stern or your Chicago Booth PowerPoint. After you have brainstormed and determined what you want to say as an applicant—what you feel the admissions committee must understand about you—determine an appropriate vehicle that matches your personality and message. That vehicle just might be another conventional essay. The key is to effectively convey additional information that highlights your personality, not to win an Oscar.
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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Jen Kedrowski
mbaMission

Website: http://www.mbamission.com
Blog: http://www.mbamission.com/blog
mbaMission Insiders Guides: http://www.mbamission.com/guides.php?category=insiders
Free Consultation: http://www.mbamission.com/consult.php

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GMAT Impact: Timing on the Integrated Reasoning Section [#permalink]

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New post 16 May 2015, 13:00
FROM mbaMission Blog: GMAT Impact: Timing on the Integrated Reasoning Section
With regard to the GMAT, raw intellectual horsepower helps, but it is not everything. In this blog series, Manhattan Prep‘s Stacey Koprince teaches you how to perform at your best on test day by using some common sense.

As we have discussed in the past, the importance of the Integrated Reasoning (IR) section mirrors that of the essay: we want to get a “good enough” score, but our main focus is on the Quant and Verbal. (Note: this will likely change in the future as the schools figure out how to use IR scores.)

One important aspect of that is, as always, timing. We have 30 minutes total for IR, and there are a total of 12 questions. We do actually have to discuss what a “question” is; this is a little bit confusing on IR, because many of the questions have multiple parts.

One question equals everything that appears on one screen. A question might have one, two, or three parts to it, and all parts need to be answered to gain credit for that one question. Once you have submitted your answer(s) for that question, a new question screen will pop up.

Because we have a total of 12 questions (some with multiple parts), we have an average of 2.5 minutes per question. Some question types will naturally take longer than others, though; for example, Multi-Source Reasoning (MSR) requires us to do quite a bit of reading. MSR prompts also typically include multiple questions, however, so our reading time can be spread across two or three questions (similar to Reading Comp), allowing us still to aim for an average of about 2.5 minutes per question.

How should we handle the overall timing for the section? Glad you asked. You have a choice: you can check your progress by time or by question number. If you are not sure which would feel more natural for you, try out both options and see which one you like better.

Also, you can check either once or twice during the 30 minutes. If you think you can remember to check twice, that is great; if not, checking just once is fine.

Time Check: if, when you check, you are within one question of your target, you are good!

Time left
You have finished Q#

Check Once
15 minutes
6

OR

Check Twice
20 minutes, 10 minutes
48

 

Question # Check: if, when you check, you are within two minutes of your target, you are good!

You have finished Q#
Time left

Check Once
6
15 minutes

OR

Check Twice
48
20 minutes, 10 minutes

 

If you find that you are behind (you have used too much time relative to the question number), then you are going to need to guess immediately on at least one question, possibly more. Do NOT try to spread your remaining time across the remaining questions; that is a recipe for getting them all wrong thanks to careless mistakes.

If you find that you are ahead (you are more than two minutes too fast), slow down a bit. Write down or check your work and make sure you are not losing any “easy” points (meaning, we do not want to make careless mistakes on questions that we actually can answer correctly.).

Finally, remember once again that we do not care as much about the IR score; identifying your weaker areas and simply skipping a couple of those questions as soon as they pop up is perfectly fine!
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

_________________

Jen Kedrowski
mbaMission

Website: http://www.mbamission.com
Blog: http://www.mbamission.com/blog
mbaMission Insiders Guides: http://www.mbamission.com/guides.php?category=insiders
Free Consultation: http://www.mbamission.com/consult.php

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MBA News: UCLA Anderson Receives $100M Gift from Long-Time Supporter [#permalink]

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New post 16 May 2015, 19:00
FROM mbaMission Blog: MBA News: UCLA Anderson Receives $100M Gift from Long-Time Supporter
The UCLA Anderson School of Management announced on Wednesday that Marion Anderson, wife of the late John Edward Anderson, after whom the school is named, has donated $100M to the MBA program. The contribution—the most sizeable in the school’s history—comes almost three decades after an earlier donation from John Edward and Marion Anderson led to the renaming of the school in 1987.

Marion Anderson has remained supportive of the business school since her husband passed away in 2011. “Like my late husband, I take enormous pleasure in furthering the school’s impact on the lives of future global leaders, in advancing the practice of management through faculty research and in facilitating access to a world-class learning opportunity for students from all walks of life,” she said. The donation will be divided into two portions—$60M will devoted to creating an endowment for such expenses as research funding and financial aid, while $40M will lay the foundation for the construction of new campus facilities.

UCLA initiated a fundraising campaign in early 2014 with a $4.2B goal in preparation for the university’s 100th anniversary in 2019. UCLA Anderson has raised $183M to date toward its program-specific $300M goal, and administrators seem understandably pleased with the latest contribution. “I am humbled by this transformative gift,” Anderson Dean Judy Olian commented. Remarked UCLA Chancellor Gene Block, “Marion’s most recent gift will enhance learning opportunities for generations of students and support scholarship by faculty who are leaders in their fields. As UCLA Anderson expands its reach and distinctions, Marion’s gift provides the resources—both financial and physical—to realize an ambitious vision.”
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

_________________

Jen Kedrowski
mbaMission

Website: http://www.mbamission.com
Blog: http://www.mbamission.com/blog
mbaMission Insiders Guides: http://www.mbamission.com/guides.php?category=insiders
Free Consultation: http://www.mbamission.com/consult.php

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MBA Admissions Myths Destroyed: The CFA Is a Liability [#permalink]

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New post 17 May 2015, 14:00
FROM mbaMission Blog: MBA Admissions Myths Destroyed: The CFA Is a Liability
The Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation—a grueling, three-year financial program that hundreds of thousands of people pursue each year—covers many of the subjects included in a “typical” first-year MBA curriculum. A CFA aspirant must study basic economics, accounting, finance, and quantitative analysis—areas that echo aspects of many first-year MBA core curricula. So would working toward a CFA designation actually negatively affect an MBA applicant’s candidacy by suggesting that he/she already has the tools and MBA education would provide and that additional studies would therefore be superfluous? Definitely not!

Pursuing a CFA designation is not at all a negative, and in fact reflects positively on the applicant in that the effort emphasizes his/her abilities to manage a rigorous MBA curriculum and establishes the candidate as a self-starter and a disciplined individual (given that CFA study is intense and requires several months of sustained study for each level). Furthermore, from an admissions perspective, admissions officers want to know that they are admitting individuals who are employable; the CFA charter holder has an advantage in the post-MBA recruiting world, because employers can point to the designation as a differentiator among otherwise indistinguishable applicants.

The CFA can also be a useful marketing tool for candidates to help them during the admissions process. Because the CFA narrowly focuses on financial tools, it does not cover a myriad of other subjects the MBA does address and that are useful to financial professionals, including marketing, operations, international business, human resource management, and entrepreneurship. The CFA is an independent and largely quantitative program and thus cannot provide the elements that the MBA offers through discussion, debate, and measuring qualitative information in decision making.

Together, the CFA designation and the MBA degree are a powerful one-two punch that can be advantageous in both gaining admission to business school and to landing that coveted post-MBA position.
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Monday Morning Essay Tip: Use Humor with Discretion [#permalink]

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New post 18 May 2015, 08:01
FROM mbaMission Blog: Monday Morning Essay Tip: Use Humor with Discretion
Although we often offer a “how to” and a “how not to” example as part of our Monday Morning Essay Tip, we cannot present a simple illustration of our advice this week. This is because our focus this time is on humor, which is nuanced and can be deemed appropriate only with a full understanding of the context in which it is presented. Therefore, we offer merely a strong suggestion: be very careful when using humor in your essays. The line between being funny and coming across as immature, inappropriate, or even careless is a very fine one.

In our view, the writers who use humor best are those who possess the skill to appear clever or witty and are not striving to portray themselves as stand-up comics. Your essays are not the proper venue in which to showcase your latest routine, though a mildly self-deprecating anecdote with humorous undertones could help reveal your personality if well executed. Keep in mind that humor itself is not the goal of your essay but part of a broader story and message to your reader. If you have a strong voice and can use humor with subtlety, then proceed—but even then, do so with caution and ensure that you get an honest, solid critique before you submit your final draft.
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MBA News: Stanford GSB Experiences the Burden of Alumni Concentration [#permalink]

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New post 18 May 2015, 14:01
FROM mbaMission Blog: MBA News: Stanford GSB Experiences the Burden of Alumni Concentration
The Stanford Graduate School of Business (GSB) is generally known for its edge in the technology arena, given its location. Indeed, many Stanford MBAs choose to stay in the San Francisco Bay Area after graduation, in part to take advantage of the school’s vast alumni network there. The Wall Street Journal reported recently that more than 50% of the MBA program’s recent graduates have remained in the sunny state—and that doing so may be putting GSB alumni at a disadvantage.

Madhav Rajan, the senior associate dean for academic affairs at the Stanford GSB, commented to the WSJ, “Once [students] get here, they become pretty enamored of living here.” He explained that the concentration of graduates within the region means that fewer connections are available for the school’s alumni interested in starting or joining companies in other areas. In a possibly related decision, the school is offering up to 13 fellowships this year—each worth more than $140K—to international students who promise to return to their respective countries after earning their degree.

Tracy McCabe, the executive director for alumni relations at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, noted that having a saturation of alumni in one specific area can make a school too “dependent on the success and growth of business of that particular geography.” Yet the lure of the Bay Area tech world might prove too difficult for some to resist. Referring to the value of the exchanges he has had with local business leaders and fellow entrepreneurs, second-year GSB student David Adams told the WSJ, “There’s no place in the world where there’s such density.” Adams is the CEO and co-founder of a short-term apartment rental company. Gayatri Datar, who graduated from the Stanford GSB in 2014, has a very different take on the issue, however, and relocated to Kigali, Rwanda, to operate the nonproft group she cofounded. “I’m so much more excited about the stuff that’s going on the other side of the world,” she said.
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Mission Admission: Keep Your Parents Out of It [#permalink]

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New post 19 May 2015, 12:01
FROM mbaMission Blog: Mission Admission: Keep Your Parents Out of It
Mission Admission is a series of MBA admission tips; a new one is posted each Tuesday.

When you apply to business school, leave your parents out of the process! Although we hope this tip will be obvious to most candidates, those who are a part of “Gen Y” or “The Millennials” may have parents who are accustomed to helping guide their children’s choices, having done so throughout the candidates’ high school and college years. These parents naturally want to be involved in the MBA application process as well and are now leaving many admissions officers across the country shaking their heads.

Of course, having a parent call to confirm whether an important document was received when an applicant is perhaps traveling or working abroad and/or cannot personally make such a call during work hours is certainly not the same as having a parent call to ask why his/her son or daughter has not received an interview invitation yet. Unless the matter at hand is an entirely practical one, candidates have nothing to gain by having their parents act as their agents—quite the contrary. An aggressive parent can reflect badly on an applicant for a variety of reasons, the most obvious being that the parent’s interference suggests that the candidate lacks maturity and perhaps even the ability to make independent judgments and decisions.

Think very carefully before you involve your parents in any aspect of the application process except sitting at home and waiting for great news—successful applicants do it all the time!
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MBA Career Advice: Awesome Informational Interviews [#permalink]

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New post 19 May 2015, 15:00
FROM mbaMission Blog: MBA Career Advice: Awesome Informational Interviews
In this weekly series, our friends at MBA Career Coaches will be dispensing invaluable advice to help you actively manage your career. Topics include building your network, learning from mistakes and setbacks, perfecting your written communication, and mastering even the toughest interviews. For more information or to sign up for a free career consultation, visit www.mbacareercoaches.com.

One of your greatest tools to learn about potential job opportunities, build new relationships, and advance your career is the informational interview. Ideally, you will use your network to get connected directly to people who work in the firms you are interested in. When you are introduced to someone, it makes it much more likely that they will agree to speak with you. Once someone has agreed to an informational interview, there are a few keys to remember to make the most out of your time.

Respect Their Time

Everyone is busy. So keep it brief. Ask for 20 minutes to talk. The phone will work best for most people, so don’t propose coffee or a live meeting to start. Then make sure you are ready to get everything you need in those 20 minutes. If they want to extend the conversation, that is up to them.

Do Your Research

Speaking directly with someone at a target firm is a rare opportunity for primary research. So don’t ask basic questions that you could find on the internet or by reading one of our Career Primers. Do your best to leverage publicly available information to ascertain things such as….

  • Where the firm is located and whether it has offices in different geographies you are interested in.
  • The nature of the position you would be interested in (e.g. entry level analyst, senior consultant, etc.)
  • Any recent news coverage related to the company – earnings releases, mergers, changes in leadership. Etc.
Know What They Have to Offer

Don’t just research the firm, research the individual to whom you will be speaking. Use LinkedIn and the company website to familiarize yourself with your interviewee’s basic information – title, tenure with the firm, career trajectory prior to this role, etc. This is critical to asking great questions. For example, if you are seeking a position in the finance department, and your interviewer is on the marketing team, she will likely not know much about the challenges a finance associate will face. That said, she will know plenty about corporate culture, firm success factors, and the interview process. Leverage the expertise of the person you are talking to and show respect for their time by asking them questions they can answer.

Set the Context

Do not neglect this step. Before you jump in and begin firing off questions, let the person know who you are first. Introduce yourself briefly. Your Networking Opener is a good model to leverage here. Be brief, but let them know a little about your background, where you are in your career, and what you hope to get out of this conversation. People want to be useful to you, and you make it much easier for them to do that when you tell them what you want.

Ask Great Questions

Everyone likes to talk about their experience and most people like to give advice. These are also the two topics that will make your informational interview most valuable. It might even be worth your time to create an interview guide for your conversation. You will get much more valuable information if you ask questions that are easy to answer an require robust answers. So instead of “What is your job like?” Consider asking something like: “Describe what your work life looks like in a typical week.”

Some topics to explore:

Firm Culture

  • How would you characterize the culture of the firm?
  • How do people collaborate and work together here?
  • What values are emphasized in teamwork?
  • What kind of people hae not been great fits at this company?
  • What would you suggest I do to learn more about the firm’s culture?
The Work Itself

  • What does a day in your life look like? What percent of your time do you spend in meetings, on email, on the phone, working on the computer, traveling, etc?
  • What aspects of the job have you struggled with most? What aspects of the (position I am interested in) do people tend to struggle with most?
  • What do you find most rewarding about your work?
  • What problems have you been most passionate about solving?
Success Criteria

  • On what key dimensions are you evaluated in your work? What key dimensions is the (position I am interested in) evaluated on?
  • What are the three core skills without which you could not have succeeded?
  • What are the key development areas you are working on now?
  • Do you have any advice for me on core skills or qualities to develop that would make me a better candidate for the position I am interested in?
This is not an exhaustive list. These are just a few ideas to get you thinking about what you want to know. But notice how most of these questions center on the interviewee’s own work and the “what” of the job. This enables the individual to expand on his or her own experiences rather than just giving opinions, which may or may not be relevant to your own job search.

Give the Connection a Future

This is the important last step in any conversation. Create an opportunity for follow up. This is as simple as asking for something or offering something. For example…

An Ask: I would really appreciate if I could follow up with you in the next several months to see if you have any openings on your team, would that be alright? And if you do think of a position that would be a good fit for me, please let me know.

An Offer: I read an article last week that reminded me of the challenges you described in your job, I will send it to you when I get back to my office.

Then make sure you actually follow up as you promised!
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Professor Profiles: James E. Schrager, The University of Chicago Booth [#permalink]

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New post 20 May 2015, 13:00
FROM mbaMission Blog: Professor Profiles: James E. Schrager, The University of Chicago Booth School of Business
Many MBA applicants feel that they are purchasing a brand when they choose an MBA program, but the educational experience you will have is what is crucial to your future, and no one will affect your education more than your professors. Each Wednesday, we profile a standout professor as identified by students. Today, we focus on James Schrager from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.

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Although he has a PhD from the University of Chicago in organizational behavior and policy, James E. Schrager is not just an academic, but also a practitioner, able to claim that he helped take the first private American company public on the Tokyo Stock Exchange and helped turn around aspects of the Pritzker family holdings, which were ultimately sold to Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway. Students we interviewed noted that Schrager brings his high-level experiences to class but remains entirely in touch with students’ more modest perspectives, adapting his anecdotes accordingly and creating practical learning points that pertain to what students will face early in their post-MBA careers. Schrager is a three-time recipient of the university’s Emory Williams Award for Excellence in Teaching (in 2007, 2001, and 1996). One second-year student told mbaMission, “He is not up in the sky, but very practical, and by the way, his class is always full.” Students’ grades in Schrager’s “New Venture Strategy” class are based in part on the success of a business idea the students present to their peers—the other students act as venture capitalists and give feedback on the idea.

For more information about Chicago Booth and 15 other top-ranked business schools, check out the mbaMission Insider’s Guides.
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Harvard Business School Essay Analysis, 2015–2016 [#permalink]

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New post 20 May 2015, 14:00
FROM mbaMission Blog: Harvard Business School Essay Analysis, 2015–2016
So, the truth is out: Harvard Business School (HBS) applicants like to write essays. How do we know this? HBS Director of Admissions Dee Leopold noted in a recent admissions blog post, wherein she released this year’s sole essay question, that every single applicant last year submitted an application essay, even though doing so was technically optional. HBS typically gets more than 9,000 applicants each year, and not one even accidentally neglected to submit an essay! We have to wonder, then, if everyone feels compelled to complete a task, is it truly optional? Not really. Leopold admitted that by unanimously submitting an essay when they were not required to, the school’s candidates essentially told her that the essay is in fact mandatory, and she is listening. This makes sense to us, because who would want to limit their narrative by not taking advantage of an opportunity to communicate with the admissions committee? We can assure you that we advised every HBS client of ours to write an essay last year to help develop their stories. The school may be changing its approach this application season, but its essay prompt is basically the same. It offers an open-ended opportunity for you to tell the admissions committee whatever you want about yourself—to give the school a sense of your experiences, personality, and ultimately, your likeability. Our analysis follows…

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Essay 1: It’s the first day of class at HBS. You are in Aldrich Hall meeting your “section.” This is the group of 90 classmates who will become your close companions in the first-year MBA classroom. Our signature case method participant-based learning model ensures that you will get to know each other very well. The bonds you collectively create throughout this shared experience will be lasting.


Introduce yourself.

Let us start our analysis with another snippet from Leopold’s recent blog post: “We have no pre-conceived ideas of what ‘good’ looks like. We look forward to lots of variance.”

Read this statement a few times. Internalize it. Inevitably, you will have questions about how you “should” proceed. We can certainly guide you, and that is of course the purpose of this essay analysis, but there is no single right way to approach this essay. Here are some questions that many applicants will agonize over, assuming that they must find the “right” way to respond and that they risk making a major misstep if they do not:

“HBS will want to know that I have goals, right? Do I have to discuss my goals?”

Nope. You actually do not need to discuss your goals. As Leopold herself asserted, HBS has “no pre-conceived ideas of what ‘good’ looks like.” If the admissions committee wanted to know about your goals, this would have been part of the essay question (and such a question probably exists somewhere else in the application). This is not to say, however, that HBS actively does not want to hear about your goals. If sharing your aspirations will help you craft a compelling introduction to your classmates, then do so. Keep in mind that you must own your goals for your essay to be effective. They need to truly define you and your expected contribution to the school. If that is indeed the case, and you can imagine your classmates being really captivated by your ambitions, then discussing them just might be the right choice for you.

“HBS will want me to discuss why I am applying to HBS, right?”

Nope. Again, if you feel confident that your reason for choosing HBS for your MBA would definitely be interesting to an outsider to whom you are introducing yourself, then you should certainly address this topic in your essay. But do not do so just because you think HBS is expecting you to. If the admissions committee had wanted an extensive explanation of “Why HBS?” then the essay prompt would have explicitly asked. Anyone who has ever spoken to Leopold knows that she is a real straight shooter—she has no interest in obfuscating anything, especially admissions issues. Let us repeat, she has “no pre-conceived ideas,” so if explaining “Why HBS?” is an important part of introducing yourself to your future classmates, then proceed.

“HBS has a video about the case method that it suggests applicants watch. Should I relate my essay back to this video?”

Are you sensing a theme in our analysis yet? You can relate your personal story to the case method if it is compelling, but you certainly do not have to, and we would caution against trying too hard to make such a connection. Take a moment and actually imagine introducing yourself to your classmates by repeatedly referencing the case method. Do you think that would seem sincere or be engaging?

Whatever approach or story you ultimately choose, perhaps the most important step of this process is this: when you feel that your essay is done, go to a quiet spot alone and read it out loud. Really listen to what you sound like. The HBS application page notes that “should you enroll at HBS, there will be an opportunity for you to share this with them,” meaning your classmates. So as you read your essay aloud, try to listen to it as a stranger might, and ask yourself whether you would be proud of the impression it makes. Ask yourself whether it reveals information that you want your classmates to have about you. Of course, we can be our own harshest critics, so definitely be kind with yourself. Your essay does not need to read like a work of literary genius or be about rare and incredible accomplishments. It simply needs to sound like… you. Share the experiences that are unique to you, that reflect who you are as an individual. Doing so will reveal a level of sincerity that will compel others to listen. If you are still unsure after reading your essay aloud on your own, try reading it to a family member or friend. If you are comfortable sharing it with them in this way, and if they agree that your essay sounds true to who you are and is interesting to listen to, you most likely have a draft that would be effective for HBS and your potential classmates as well.

Indeed, sincerity is key to showing true ownership of your stories. Arguably one of the most famous comedians in the world right now, Louis C.K., recently received an award from the storytelling organization The Moth and reflected on this concept of ownership:

“I want to thank the people who told their stories, the kids and all these people, because I think stories [are] the only thing you have that’s really only yours. … Your stories are the only things that you’re the only one that has them and then just by telling them, then everybody else has them, so that’s why I think stories are great.”

The nice thing about getting to that sincere level of storytelling is that great stories almost always tell themselves. If a story has stuck in your mind for years, and it is something that you are proud of or that somehow makes you an interesting human being, then you are holding on to it for a reason. Explore those stories, and ask yourself whether any of them are worthy of being shared with your classmates. Consider what the stories say about you. You do not need to have a single theme weaving through your essay—though that can work—so you can offer a few disparate anecdotes or brief vignettes that capture your persona and would be engaging without being cloying or braggy. (Note that we strongly advise against repurposing the essay you wrote for the Stanford Graduate School of Business’s “What matters most?” prompt for this submission. The HBS admissions committee will clearly see through this tactic!)

Once you have identified the stories you believe are worthy of representing you to your classmates, simply write them as they happened. This is the old “show, don’t tell” maxim. Sharing your story as it happened will result in a much more interesting essay than your directly stating what you want your audience to know about you. Consider the following examples to see the difference between these approaches.

Tell: “I am a risk taker. I am willing to try anything—even stand-up comedy—in front of friends and colleagues. I have performed eight times and feel better each time I am out there, though I actually started out a bit shaky with some unintentional jokes.”

Show: “When I took the stage for the first time at Laugh Tracks, I quickly spotted my friends and even some of my colleagues in the audience. With the bright lights shining in my face, I searched for a paper towel to pat down my sweaty forehead—and got my first laughs quite unintentionally.”

These two examples share the same story, so why is the “show” option better? It allows the reader to visualize the scene the writer is setting and provides a sense of the writer’s risk without it needing to be explicitly spelled out. When you take a “show” approach, you lead your reader and compel him/her to stay engaged with the story to see what happens next, rather than simply presenting a conclusion. Sincerity results from the sharing of experiences, not of conclusions. If your narrative is well developed, your reader will arrive on his/her own at the conclusion you desire.

As far word count, we should point out that our essay analysis here is longer than your HBS essay should be. At this point, it is over 1,500 words and counting, if you include the question itself. We recommend that your essay be 600–1,200 words and expect that most applicants will submit essays of approximately 750–1,000 words. Keep in mind that with this essay, you are introducing yourself to your classmates—would you want to listen to a stranger speak about his/her life and experiences for ten minutes (about 1,350 words)? You might if that person had something absolutely gripping to say, but most people’s stories will fall short of gripping. An effective, well-crafted essay will be interesting, reveal the writer’s character, and give a window into his/her “owned” experience, and this can definitely be achieved within our recommended word-count range.

Have the Last Word: The Post-Interview Reflection (conditional on being interviewed)

From the admissions committee: “Following the interview, candidates are required to submit a written reflection using our online application system. This must be submitted within 24 hours following the completion of the interview. Detailed instructions will be provided to those applicants who are invited to the interview process.”

For the third consecutive year, HBS is stipulating a final written task for candidates who are granted an interview. Within 24 hours of interviewing, you must submit some final words of reflection, addressing the question “How well did we get to know you?” As with the application essay, this post-interview reflection is open-ended; you can structure it however you wish and write about whatever you want to tell the committee. HBS urges interviewed applicants not to approach this reflection as a formal essay but instead “as an email you might write to a colleague or supervisor after a meeting.”

Some candidates may find this additional submission intimidating, but we encourage you to view it as an opportunity to reveal new aspects of your profile to the admissions committee. Because your HBS interviewer will have read your entire application before your meeting, you will likely discuss information from your resume, essays, recommendations, etc., during your interview. This post-interview reflection, then, could provide an opening for you to discuss new and different elements of your profile, thereby adding depth to your candidacy. For example, if you could not find a way to include the story of a key life experience of yours into your essays, but your interviewer touches on a similar story or something connected with this experience in your meeting, you would now have license to share that anecdote.

During your conversation, focus exclusively  on your interviewer’s questions and your responses—in other words, do not try to identify possible topics for your post-interview reflection while you are still in your meeting—but as soon as it is over, jot down all the topics covered and stories you discussed. If you interview on campus, note also any observations about your time there. For example, sitting in on a class might have reminded you of a compelling past experience, or participating in the case method may have provided insight into an approach you could use in some way in the future. Maybe the people you met or a building you saw made a meaningful impression on you. Whatever these elements are, tie them to aspects of your background and profile while adding some new thoughts and information about yourself. This last part is key—simply describing your visit will not teach the admissions committee anything about you, and a flat statement like “I loved the case method” will not make you stand out. Similarly, offering a summary of everything the admissions committee already knows about you will not advance your candidacy and would constitute a lost opportunity to keep the committee learning about who you are.

HBS offers some additional advice on the post-interview reflection that we strongly urge you to take seriously and follow:

  • We will be much more generous in our reaction to typos and grammatical errors than we will be with pre-packaged responses. Emails that give any indication that they were produced BEFORE you had the interview will raise a flag for us.
  • We do not expect you to solicit or receive any outside assistance with this exercise.
As for how long this essay should be, HBS again does not offer a word limit. We have seen successful submissions ranging from 400 words to more than 1,000. We recommend aiming for approximately 500, but adjust as appropriate to thoroughly tell the admissions committee what you feel is important, while striving to be succinct.

For a thorough exploration of HBS’s academic program/merits, defining characteristics, crucial statistics, social life, academic environment and more, please check out the mbaMission Insider’s Guide to Harvard Business School.
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Beyond the MBA Classroom: Bring Your Spouse and Kids to UC Berkeley Ha [#permalink]

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New post 21 May 2015, 11:00
FROM mbaMission Blog: Beyond the MBA Classroom: Bring Your Spouse and Kids to UC Berkeley Haas
When you select an MBA program, you are not just choosing your learning environment but are also committing to becoming part of a community. Each Thursday, we offer a window into life “beyond the MBA classroom” at a top business school.

The Partners Club at the Haas School of Business at the University of California (UC), Berkeley, caters to the needs of MBA students’ significant others and children and is reportedly very active on campus. Beginning when students are just new admits, the club helps answer questions on everything from housing issues to community life, and throughout the academic year, the club organizes game nights, dinners, happy hours, and other social events for the partners. Haas partners are also invited to attend all student social events and club activities. Said one second-year student in a November 2010 online student chat, “Honestly, I think partners have the best time in business school—they get all the fun without those pesky classes!”

For in-depth descriptions of social and community activities at UC Berkeley Haas and 15 other top MBA programs, check out the mbaMission Insider’s Guides.
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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Blog: http://www.mbamission.com/blog
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Diamonds in the Rough: Entrepreneurship at Wake Forest [#permalink]

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New post 21 May 2015, 17:01
FROM mbaMission Blog: Diamonds in the Rough: Entrepreneurship at Wake Forest
MBA applicants can get carried away with rankings. In this series, we profile amazing programs at business schools that are typically ranked outside the top 15.

Wake Forest University’s School of Business prides itself on an integrated, leadership-focused curriculum. All students complete required first-year core course work, which establishes a foundation for Wake Forest’s entrepreneurial approach to business problem solving. During the second year, students choose a narrower career concentration, but entrepreneurship remains at the forefront. For students planning to start their own business, Wake Forest provides resources through its Angell Center for Entrepreneurship. Included among these are entrepreneurial internships, for which students receive credit for creating unique teaching cases with the knowledge they gathered via their internship. The school also houses a Family Business Center to offer management training and networking resources to students involved in a family business.
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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Website: http://www.mbamission.com
Blog: http://www.mbamission.com/blog
mbaMission Insiders Guides: http://www.mbamission.com/guides.php?category=insiders
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Friday Factoid: Program for Financial Studies at Columbia Business Sch [#permalink]

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New post 22 May 2015, 12:01
FROM mbaMission Blog: Friday Factoid: Program for Financial Studies at Columbia Business School
Already well known as a finance powerhouse, Columbia Business School (CBS) stepped up its finance game in 2010 with the establishment of the Program for Financial Studies. This umbrella initiative connects faculty who approach financial studies from a variety of disciplines with students, alumni, and external organizations. The program’s main goals are to support research, to enhance the CBS finance curriculum and related resources, and to create opportunities for the exchange of ideas between CBS students and faculty and members of the external finance community. Finance enthusiasts will enjoy the program’s case studies, including “The Norwegian Government Pension Fund: The Divestiture of Wal-Mart Inc.,” written by Professor Andrew Ang, and “Don’t Be Evil: Google’s 2004 Dutch Auction Initial Public Offering,” written by the program’s director, Professor Laurie Hodrick.
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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mbaMission

Website: http://www.mbamission.com
Blog: http://www.mbamission.com/blog
mbaMission Insiders Guides: http://www.mbamission.com/guides.php?category=insiders
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Financing Your MBA: Student Loan Reduction Strategies Webinar [#permalink]

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New post 22 May 2015, 17:00
FROM mbaMission Blog: Financing Your MBA: Student Loan Reduction Strategies Webinar
The elation of “getting in” has now given way to a crucial question: “How am I going to finance my studies?” To help answer this question, our sister firm M7 Financial has created a brand-new, free webinar, Financing Your MBA: Student Loan Reduction Strategies, to help prospective and admitted MBAs understand the myriad of ways they can reduce their dependency on student loans.

During this session on Thursday, May 28 at 7:30 p.m. EDT, M7 Financial Co-Founders Cory Pollock and Jeremy Shinewald will show students where the holes in an MBA program’s recommend budget lies and then discuss the ways to minimize expenses including the following:

  • Scholarship and fellowship opportunities
  • Corporate sponsorships
  • Tax credits and deductions
  • Short-term consulting projects
Additionally, Cory and Jeremy will address the important differences in student loans so that you can make informed choices that serve your needs including

  • Avoiding costly origination fees
  • Variable vs. fixed interest rates
  • Consequences of different repayment terms
  • Loan forgiveness programs
Please join M7 for this informative session and Q&A to follow on Thursday, May 28 from 7:30-9:00 p.m. EDT. Click here to register for free!
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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mbaMission

Website: http://www.mbamission.com
Blog: http://www.mbamission.com/blog
mbaMission Insiders Guides: http://www.mbamission.com/guides.php?category=insiders
Free Consultation: http://www.mbamission.com/consult.php

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GMAT Impact: Analyzing Your Practice Problems [#permalink]

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New post 23 May 2015, 12:01
FROM mbaMission Blog: GMAT Impact: Analyzing Your Practice Problems
With regard to the GMAT, raw intellectual horsepower helps, but it is not everything. In this blog series, Manhattan Prep‘s Stacey Koprince teaches you how to perform at your best on test day by using some common sense.

Did you know that, on any particular problem, roughly 80% of your learning comes after you have picked the answer? Turns out, we do not learn much while in the process of doing a problem, especially when the clock is ticking. We are just trying to remember (and use!) everything that we learned before we started working on that problem.

Afterward, though, we can take all the time we want to figure out how to get better—that is where we really learn. Did I understand what they were asking? Did I know how to do the math or reasoning necessary to get to the answer? Is there a more efficient way to do that work? Did I make any mistakes or fall into any traps? If so, which ones and why? How could I make an educated guess?

In a nutshell: if you are not spending at least as long reviewing a question as you spent doing it in the first place, then you are not maximizing your learning.

Take a look at this article: How to Analyze a Practice Problem. It contains a list of questions to ask yourself when reviewing a problem. Take note of a couple of things:

– Yes, you still ask yourself these questions even when you answer the question correctly.

– No, you do not need to ask yourself every single question for each problem you review; choose the most appropriate questions based upon how the problem went for you.

Want some examples of how to do this? Glad you asked. Below, you will find links to articles containing an analysis of a sample problem for each of the six main question types. Happy studying!

How to analyze the following:

Sentence Correction

Critical Reasoning

Reading Comprehension

Data Sufficiency

Problem Solving

Integrated Reasoning Table
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

_________________

Jen Kedrowski
mbaMission

Website: http://www.mbamission.com
Blog: http://www.mbamission.com/blog
mbaMission Insiders Guides: http://www.mbamission.com/guides.php?category=insiders
Free Consultation: http://www.mbamission.com/consult.php

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MBA Admissions Myths Destroyed: I Must Interview with the Admissions C [#permalink]

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New post 24 May 2015, 13:00
FROM mbaMission Blog: MBA Admissions Myths Destroyed: I Must Interview with the Admissions Committee!
After submitting your MBA application, you endure weeks of nervous anticipation before ideally being invited to interview. You then start to prepare for the interview, ready to prove yourself to the admissions committee. You take your tour, sit in on a class, and head to the admissions office only to find—gasp!—a second-year MBA student waiting to interview you—and he is wearing jeans! You wonder, “This school must not take me seriously as a candidate. I must be in some second tier that it really does not care about!” Take a deep breath and reconsider.

What is the MBA admissions committee’s job? Quite simply, the committee strives to find the best candidates for its program. So whether you interview with a member of the committee, an alumnus/alumna, or a student, your interview will be considered equally . Why would an admissions committee put a huge group of candidates at a disadvantage? What would be the point of interviewing an applicant if the admissions committee did not find its school’s alumni to be reliable interviewers? Why would the committee solicit the help of students if it sincerely believed those individuals were not capable of rendering an appropriate judgment?

So, if you find yourself on campus and are interviewed by someone other than an admissions committee member, do not worry, and maintain your focus. Remember that your story and your ability to connect with your interviewer are what truly matter in your interview.
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

_________________

Jen Kedrowski
mbaMission

Website: http://www.mbamission.com
Blog: http://www.mbamission.com/blog
mbaMission Insiders Guides: http://www.mbamission.com/guides.php?category=insiders
Free Consultation: http://www.mbamission.com/consult.php

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