Non-Traditional MBA Candidates: How to Get Accepted

by Beat The GMAT, Jul 18, 2012

Earlier this week, we had the pleasure of hosting a live Q&A chat focused on answering profile-specific questions from our community members. Kofi Kankam, co-founder of Admit Advantage, was awesome enough to answer tons of questions from "non-traditional" MBA candidates in our Beat The GMAT community. (By the way, Kofi types at lightening speed!)

Check out some of his answers below and then read the full Event Transcript on MBA Watch!

How do I prove I'm serious...despite my past bad track record

Question:I have a 2.7 GPA and not a good track record for undergrad, how can I show schools I am serious and ready? What can help offset a low-GPA?

Kofi:Take some classes, evlyn - finance, accounting, economics, calc. Probably 2+ of those. Also, hopefully your grades got better over time. If so, point that out. Also, have your recommenders write about your analytical prowess as well.

Also, pick your schools accordingly - you definitely want to have differently-tiered programs for your suite of schools to which you apply.

My dad is my supervisor, should he write my LOR?

Question:I have spent the past eight years since college as a residential real estate agent at my father's company. He is my primary supervisor (and biggest critic), and I'm considering having him write a recommendation. Im applying to top 10 schools, 3.4 gpa from top public school, 750 gmat, very strong leadership. Thoughts?

Kofi:Nope - I love my dad also, but you shouldn't do that. Have someone else - somebody more senior than him, someone at his same level, a service provider (accountant, etc...) write it. It may be hard for adcom to think your Pops is objective enough to take his evaluation seriously enough. I wouldn't do it.

Your profile looks very good though - nice GMAT especially.

What are business schools looking for in the non-traditional candidate?

Question:Could you describe what business schools are looking for from non-traditional applicants from the non-profit sector? I have seen throughout my research the growing emphasis on "social enterprise" and " business impact on society". Given this paradigm shift, what experiences in the the non-profit sector should I emphasize as I craft my narrative? Thanks!

Kofi:That depends on what your desire your future to be. If you're going back into nonprofit/social enterprise, than you can certainly highlight that. But, I would likely focus on the skills, management experience, challenges you overcame in leading your part of your enterprise. Non-profits are still business in the sense of managing people, revenues, and competitors. Stay focused on those topics regardless of what you want to do.

Read more advice from Kofi and therest of the transcriptonMBA Watch.