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Older candidate Profile Eval Request

This topic has 1 expert reply and 0 member replies
comebackkid Junior | Next Rank: 30 Posts Default Avatar
05 Feb 2009
19 messages
Test Date:
GMAT Score:

Older candidate Profile Eval Request

Post Thu Feb 05, 2009 1:31 pm
Age: 39 (turn 40 10/23)

GMAT: 770 Q49 V47 (first attempt)

UGPA: 3.1 - Indiana University - Bloomington, Economics 1992: mitigating factors = managed a family owned car care center (full service car wash, meineke muffler, jiffy lube) in Chicago full-time throughout entire undergraduate as a result of a family tragedy - commuted 4 hours to Chicago Thurs-Sun every week

W/E: nontraditional career tract ~ 160 months as small business entrepreneur: successfully started and operated multiple successful small businesses in two sectors: retail and financial services (mortgage banking) - multiple patents pending related to technology mentioned below

Plans after MBA: start a vertically integrated mortgage company, leveraging proprietary software and a low-cost pricing model made possible by technological advantages to disenfranchise the dominant mortgage broker (think hybrid of Carmax and Dell).

Alt Transcript: currently taking calculus and stats - will have As in both




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Graham MBA Admissions Consultant
18 Sep 2008
270 messages
Followed by:
17 members
35 times
Test Date:
August 1998
Target GMAT Score:
GMAT Score:
Post Fri Feb 06, 2009 1:57 am
Dear Comebackkid,

Thanks for your post!

You clearly have a non-traditional profile as an MBA applicant. My basic thoughts are as follows:

1) I am not terribly concerned about your ugrad GPA of 3.1. For starters, this took place 16+ years ago. Second, you have a good reason for the lower marks (running a business/family tragedy). Third, the GMAT result of 770 should mitigate any concerns about your academic aptitude.

2) In terms of your career path to date, things get a bit fuzzy here. Have you bounced around extensively or are we talking about a pair of 8-year stints in retail and financial services? Also, what is the nature of the retail work you've done? Are there any gaps in your employment? I know these questions may seem odd, but if you are going to start b-school at age 40, the last thing you want to do is come across as meandering (lest the adcom preumse that your interest in the MBA is merely your latest project).

3) In terms of your career goals, they sound interesting as well as logically related to your past experiences in the mortgage business. Having said that, I can't help but wonder if the adcom may have some hesitation about the concept of a 40-year old coming to business school to go $100K in debt and then attempting to launch a entrepreneurial venture in a collapsing housing/mortgage market. I recognize that the housing market may recover by the time you would graduate, but you have to think about what issues are 'top-of-mind' from your admissions reader's standpoint, etc.

4) You didn't comment on your activities/community work. These items are important (perhaps more important than your alternative transcript) if the schools are going to get a sense as to how you might contribute outside of class.

5) Age. As you may have gathered from my comments above, I do have some concerns about your age. As you know, you are more than 10 years older than the average admit for the programs you've targeted. Admissions committees worry about older applicants for a number of reasons. Here are a few of the fears they have:

-Will recruiters hire older graduates? [note: even if you indicate you have entrepreneurial plans, they need to assume that you may do some recruiting anyway.]
-Can you 'teach an old dog new tricks'?
-Will older students be as active on campus as younger students?
-Will older students fit into the community and still gain from their peers who have far less experience?

Beyond the admissions aspect of this (e.g. it's hard for a 40 year old to get into the full-time programs on your list), I wonder if you've thought about a part-time or executive offering. If you really are trying to get a business off the ground, it could be smart to take part-time courses as you develop your business plan, seek funding, etc.

Feel free to send your resume to info@clearadmit.com if you'd like to have a chat with one of our counselors and discuss your plans further. I wouldn't rule out full-time entirely, but I wanted to put some of the key concerns on the table at the outset here, since you are clearly an unorthodox candidate.

Best of luck,


Graham Richmond
Clear Admit, LLC
215 568 2590

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