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Top programs with a 710...your help much appreciated

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Joined: 03 Oct 2010
Posts: 4
Top programs with a 710...your help much appreciated  [#permalink]

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New post 03 Oct 2010, 19:47
Hi Paul,

I have read through some posts of yours and really like all of the thoughtful and useful advice you have given some of my peers. I was hoping I could ask for your help in guiding me as well.

Some background:

GMAT: I took the GMAT yesterday (second time) and got a 710 (44 on both). I got a 680 the first time, with a 6.0 AWA. In both cases my quant was lower. I am now struggling with deciding whether to take it again or to focus on the essays, etc. (I am leaning to the former since I work crazy hours and feel my undergrad record and work experience are solid).

Undergrad: 3.99 GPA (4.0 in major). Double-major in finance and international business from a top-30 undergrad business school (14th in int'l business). Minor in political science. Valedictorian of undergrad business school.

EC in college: president of the finance club, mentor to freshmen, business case analysis team, intramural sports, etc.

Work: Joined GE through its entry-level Leadership development program, from which I graduated first in my class. Since then on the company's financial services side in corporate banking (very heavy on financial analysis, modeling, etc)

EC now: Participant in mentorship program for business seniors at my alma mater. Helped start the local alumni chapter for my alma mater. Liaison to my alma mater's finance club.

The schools I like given my background and goals are split between general management and finance-focused programs. For the former, I like HBS, Tuck, and Kellogg. For the latter, I like Wharton, MIT, and Columbia.

What is your advice for me in terms of deciding how to best proceed? I feel like my low quant score is somewhat overcome by the fact that my undergraduate major was finance and that my current job is very analytical as well. Do I have a shot at getting into any of the schools I mentioned or do I need to take the test again?

Many thanks in advance,
Adam
MBA Admissions Consultant
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Joined: 25 Jan 2010
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Re: Top programs with a 710...your help much appreciated  [#permalink]

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New post 03 Oct 2010, 22:47
Hi Adam,

I'll cut right to the chase: for admissions purpose, I do not believe you need to take the test again. For scholarship purposes, it could make a big difference.

For someone with your background, you already have the requisite GMAT score for Adcom to consider you fairly and holistically. Sure, getting a higher score can always help, but you don't *need* it to be competitive.

Your list of schools looks pretty good, although I wouldn't get hung up on the distinctions of general management vs. finance. All of those programs do a good job training well-rounded leaders while also providing great finance courses and faculty. One school that blends them particularly well and that might be worth an add is Yale SOM. Underrated in finance and their raw case method is very impressive. Also, Booth seems like a natural choice. I would think both of those programs would be better fits than Kellogg, just at first blush.

For you, it will be about articulating fit with this programs and making sure to make strong thematic statements in your essays. You have all the raw ingredients and so the application process becomes about mitigating risk and eliminating downside rather than swinging for the fences.

Thanks for reaching out. PM me if you need any additional assistance.

Respectfully,

Paul Lanzillotti
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