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Vet/ADHD/Tufts/JD/Starting Biz Post-MBA... T15?

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Vet/ADHD/Tufts/JD/Starting Biz Post-MBA... T15?  [#permalink]

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New post 28 May 2018, 16:08
UPDATE: Instantly realize how long this is so totally cool if you want to skip to the middle, read the ten wrap up points and hit the questions. Thanks!

Hello community,

New member here and I could use some advice. First I will state my background then questions after. I sincerely appreciate all feedback and I'm very responsive. I look forward to giving back to this community as well. I know top 15 programs have heard all the stories and I am competing against very talented people. Thus, it's numbers mostly, hard numbers. However, I do have uniques circumstances which should help because my numbers will not be the greatest, I fear.

About me:

I am 35 years old. I am applying to Fall 2019 so I would be 36 at the time.

I was beaten until I was 13 and raised my brother and sister. Mother has mental illness and is mentally inept, jailed at one point. Sister went to rehab and I had to get out a little early from the Navy to take care of her. I have really bad ADHD, so medicated and in special classes K-12, and suspended in high school (things like stealing from cops, yelling at teachers, fighting). Got mostly D's and F's in high school too. I went into the Navy after and this changed my life. Leadership vacuums left open I filled them etc. I even pissed off former Sec. Def. Rumsfeld when I confronted him during a Q&A overseas in front of 2,000+ people.

Went to Tufts (so top university) and took super hard classes. Ok poli sci but I pushed to take the hardest classes (ie, if someone said dont take this then next semester I was in it and tutoring it the following type ish), and even took classes at Fletcher. Tried to do my senior thesis at Harvard and they rejected my pitch... but the point is while at Tufts I never took medication or asked for special accomodations and still, with my ADHD brain graduated on time with a 3.04. I do have some D's and W's at Tufts. But given that I went through their program with untreated ADHD at 3.04 and graduates on time I think that speaks volumes. Law school was the same way, same story, and graduated on time with a 2.52 (but have W's and D's). I took really hard electives in law school and even took finance classes.

OK, so now. Ok, I practice for six months and hate it. I love litigating but am so bored and unhappy practicing generally, like the transactional side, so I decide to try different things. I explored a run for Congress and am speaking at both Dem and Repub town halls and living rooms (imagine that), because i really wanted to get a pulse for my district. However, after three months it's no bueno because they are looking for a pornstar and I cannot sell my integrity. Frankly, politicians are some of the worst people our society has created imo. I loved connecting with people and people liked me and what I was saying, but in the end I realized that I actually want to get into business. Hence, I end up in the startup world and manage a digital marketing company for 1.3 years. It's sold, and now I am consulting and applying to other start ups and financial analyst positions frankly. Figure I'll do that for this year before going off to MBA.

The way I see it right now: As an adult I choose to live with untreated ADHD. If given the choice I will choose my brain over a normal brain anytime. My trials and tribulations are different from others. My mother went to jail and my siste rehab etc. I raised my siblings while being physically beaten until my teenage years. In high school I received mostly D and F grades, and I was suspended multiple times. I joined the U.S. Navy to find direction and came back motivated and intellectually curious, which was then strengthened with seven years of rigorous academic coursework. I follow people such as Sir Richard Branson, Seth Godin, and David Neeleman not because of their success per se but because they succeeded despite their ADHD. People like me have a harder time early in life, but people like me can also change the world because of our human nature. I do not want to continue practicing law because the transactional side leaves me unfulfilled. I have decided to pursue my MBA because of the theoretical framework.

I have so many ideas for really good companies. These are legit good companies, address serious problems I have noticed stepping out of Plato's cave lol, and so I will start one of them or all of them one by one. My baby is one where I see that in the vet space only West Point does this particular thing and some Fuqua grads. I am not special but I can really launch this thing and make it successful I know it. Its in the vet space. I need this MBA to be better equipped to launch this company and then assists others we funds with their startups.

It took me 35 years okay, but I have finally learned to weaponized my learning disability. Everyone reading this long thing is good at who you are and what you do. I have weaknesses and faults. I have made mistakes. But I am very good at what I do. I believe I can get 700 with enough practice. I really can get into a top program, launch this company, and succeed. Not all people like me need an MBA to do what I am doing but I want to get one and so it is going to happen. In my heart I know it's the right thing to do. I feel it. I see myself in my section leading colleagues and being led. I see myself cognitive abilities expanding because I am being pushed.

Ok, a wrap up:

(1) Rough upbringing
(2) ADHD bad but still succeeds with it untreated at two nationally and internationally ranked programs
(3) 3.04 at Tufts and 2.52 in law school but still graduates on time (7 years of academic training, 3 at graduate level)
(4) Military Veteran
(5) Talked to Stanford and Tuck they said they want to see that I will take medication and use testing accomodations so ok I will then. Stubborn but it makes sense given the rigors in these top programs. Therefore, I am willing to take my medication and get testing accomodations while in my program.
(6) Work experience = almost 6.5-7 years by the time Fall 2019 hits, but 3.3 of that is before undergrad/grad school 1.
(7) No quant. Took Business law, M&A, and Corporate Finance in law school, B's in all.
(8) Want to immediately launch my veteran focused capital company and need the program to help lay a theoretical learned base/nurture me and train me in your program blah blah... its corny but its the truth and it is very real.
(9) I volunteer as an undergraduate ambassador at Service-To-Schools.
(10) I would be 36

First, thank you for taking the time to read everything thus far.

Questions:

(1)* GMAT or GRE?* I just bought Manhattan GMAT. I would probably get higher score with GRE but feel GMAT demonstrates more to Adcoms. Moreover, I will get testing accomodations for either one regardless, just in case that changes anyones calculus here.

(2) Fulltime or Parttime? For example, at Booth and Kellogg and Haas frankly, I will be applying to both full and part. I would rather work at a startup in the area and go to a higher ranked school. I am in OC, so USC and UCLA are down here, both have fulltime and parttime programs I will apply to but they are outside of top 15. Up north there's Haas, Stanford, and Wharton SF but latter said if work experience is under 7 years forget it.

(3) I am beginning GMAT prep in one week (told myself I had to wait until I get job offers for this year). I think I will take it multiple times this summer then apply round 1 and 2. Should I take any courses online, like Stats or Accounting or Math for MBA's at UCLA extension online? I know it looks better but Id have to take this after I study for the GMAT or GRE and would rather focus all energy on the exam, then take a class online and tell these schools I am enrolled in xyz and can send transcripts if requested etc. Thoughts?

(4) Anything I am missing or anything else to think about? I know these programs (M7, Top15) have to worry about their ranking and its taboo to bring up, fine, but I also believe they would love someone like me in the mix if I can make it in... give them something to hang their hat on. What is that thing? Is it taking the GRE so they dont have to report my score?

(5) If its green light on the GMAT, then I already have a full MGMAT set and Kaplan flashcards to read in the gym. Any other material? I was thinking go on GMAC and get more tests and possibly their main book? Idk, anything that could have out a not math-whiz like bootcamp books? If its GRE, then I should return the MGMAT, get their GRE prep, and what else?

I appreciate everyone reading this. I might be all over the place and tangents in some places but I think the narrative is there, right? T15 get many sob stories and special cases. I am not different from anyone else and can only try my best and see what happens. Last thing I want to do is apply to 15 programs and get 15 rejections.

Lastly, I heard back ways into T15, for me, are two ways: 1. I do their part-time program, an/or two, I do GRE that way they dont have to report my score, mess their rankings up, and still accept me because I see the value I add to that particular incoming class. One friend who finished HBS told me to give them "something to hang their hat on." Idk.

These programs, the top 15, they are going to see my application and say, "we really like this guy, fine, but can he get through our program or are we setting him up to fail???" I want to be able to show them that I can. I can. 7 years of hardcore academic rigor (academic probation to dean's list at Tufts... law school success) tells me yes and should tell you yes too. This is what I offer my classmates.... and this is what I offer your school..... and this is what I offer the business world and veteran space and society writ large upon graduation.... YES, yes I can... maybe I will not get straight A's, okay, but is that the standard? Show us you can get all A's? Or is it instead, "show us you will struggle, but still make it and thrive with your peers who now become your family."

Lastly, I like top 15 because I know what it's like to be around intellectually curious and energetic students and faculty, as well as good curriculum, and I know what its like to be around mediocrity. I have a legit learning disability and just know that in my heart I would be better trained at top 15 programs. Moreover, the opporunties and doors opened for me are better at these schools. I have four friends who did their MBAs, one was at Sloan, other Booth, HBS, and CBS... they all said the same thing who cares about part-time or not, just get into the very top program you can. full stop.

We all have a story. We all have trials and tribulations we faced thus far. There was a time when I believed people like me werent meant to go to Harvard, or Cornell, or Stanford. Now, I really see a crucial need for getting my MBA and I geniunely appreciate the need for my training to come from a top program. Think of someone with my ADHD brain like a Siberian Husky. I am like a Siberian Husky. They are brilliant but need proper training. That's my pitch to these programs. Here is my story, Stanford, so nurture me and train me so I don't rip up the backyard after I graduate. Anything after top 15 I am not well trained and rip up the sofa lol.

Ok, ladies and gentlemen, this has been long and I greatly appreciate everything. Like I said at the beginning, I will be super responsive here and also lend my advice where I can on other forums.

Warmest Regards,

Ray
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Re: Vet/ADHD/Tufts/JD/Starting Biz Post-MBA... T15?  [#permalink]

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New post 14 Jul 2019, 14:50
Wow, there is a lot of stuff here.

My advice, which might be bad but here it is, is to skip the top programs and go to Babson. If you just want to launch a company and don’t want to deal with intermediate steps, you should just go to Babson. It’s the most underrated program in America and it’s focused on entrepreneurs.

The age, the GPA, the circuitous work history, it’s a lot to look past. I don’t think a 700 GMAT and a goal of being an entrepreneur will get it done at a top 20. Maybe at Duke, where 50% of vets who apply get in. Maybe Texas, idk. Darden loves vets but this isn’t polished enough for them. You need perfect execution and better than a 700 GMAT to be in the game anywhere else in the top 20. They don’t actually like you having a goal to start a business right away. They want a realistic shot at a conventional MBA career path. Saying you want to start a business as your goal is bad execution.

But what will absolutely kill this is if your story is that you struggled with ADHD but now you’re taking your pills. No no no.

Your story should be that you were rebellious when you were young and the military taught you to channel your energy and be focused and disciplined. Now, you have a long term goal of starting your own company and a short term goal of a job in X related industry. That and a 730 and you’re in the game.

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Re: Vet/ADHD/Tufts/JD/Starting Biz Post-MBA... T15?  [#permalink]

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New post 14 Jul 2019, 16:32
Btw, are you the guy who got Rumsfeld to say, “You go to war with the Army you have.” by chance?

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Re: Vet/ADHD/Tufts/JD/Starting Biz Post-MBA... T15?   [#permalink] 14 Jul 2019, 16:32
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