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Older, unconventional applicant profile

This topic has 3 expert replies and 2 member replies
islander19 Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
Joined
21 Jan 2017
Posted:
6 messages

Older, unconventional applicant profile

Post Sat Jan 21, 2017 10:27 pm
Hi,

I'm looking for some input on my chances for MBA applications. My dream would be to go to Tuck and I plan to apply Early Action later this year. I would be 32 years old when applying, 33 years old at matriculation. I would also apply to a few other similar schools and likely one or two lower ranked. My goal for having an MBA is to go into management consulting with an international, particularly emerging economies, focus.

GMAT: I recently took a practice test from manhattanprep.com as an initial diagnostic, scored 720 (Q47/V42) rushing through and without bothering to look into how the test is setup or studying. I plan to take the real test in July (that's the closest date that I'll be near a test center) and am certainly aiming for 750+.

GPA: 3.6 from Ivy League, graduated cum Laude, High Honors with a degree in Social Sciences

Work Experience: I'm a U.S. citizen but all work experience is outside of the U.S. in (very) small developing countries, listed chronologically oldest to newest.

1 year volunteer teaching (secondary level, math and social science)
1.5 years paid teaching (secondary and tertiary levels, math, science, social science)
1 year as Director of an NGO (~30 employees)
2 years work for a foreign government agency (policy, developing legislation, community development)
4+ years (by time of application) managing a small export-oriented business (5 employees)

Also some consulting and part-time work including a current position as Program Manager for a development project.

My concerns are:

My age - older than average but hopefully not too out there?

My work experience - it is without a doubt unique and pretty fascinating. Everyone I meet loves to hear about the things I've done and how I've gotten to the point I'm at today. However I'm not sure how beneficial this is when applying to MBA programs, and have read that many prefer a short resume. Mine is not short, and a bit all over the place early on (teaching along with work for the NGO, public, and private sectors - I've done a bit of everything!). There are also some gaps of around 4 months between my first and second, and second and third, jobs though I'm not sure if that's long enough to raise questions? Overall the work experience/resume factor is definitely my biggest concern.

I do love the applicant-initiated interview process for Tuck. I certainly have plenty to talk about and think I would do great in that setting.

Any input on this would be greatly appreciated!

Thanks!

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GMAT/MBA Expert

VantagePointMBA Senior | Next Rank: 100 Posts
Joined
22 Mar 2016
Posted:
38 messages
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Upvotes:
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Top Reply
Post Tue Jan 24, 2017 12:37 pm
That sounds like a good plan! Best of luck to you!

_________________
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We are admissions consulting: reimagined. Click here to learn more!

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GMAT/MBA Expert

Top Reply
Post Wed Jan 25, 2017 8:27 am
islander19 wrote:
Hi,

I'm looking for some input on my chances for MBA applications. My dream would be to go to Tuck and I plan to apply Early Action later this year. I would be 32 years old when applying, 33 years old at matriculation. I would also apply to a few other similar schools and likely one or two lower ranked. My goal for having an MBA is to go into management consulting with an international, particularly emerging economies, focus.

GMAT: I recently took a practice test from manhattanprep.com as an initial diagnostic, scored 720 (Q47/V42) rushing through and without bothering to look into how the test is setup or studying. I plan to take the real test in July (that's the closest date that I'll be near a test center) and am certainly aiming for 750+.

GPA: 3.6 from Ivy League, graduated cum Laude, High Honors with a degree in Social Sciences

Work Experience: I'm a U.S. citizen but all work experience is outside of the U.S. in (very) small developing countries, listed chronologically oldest to newest.

1 year volunteer teaching (secondary level, math and social science)
1.5 years paid teaching (secondary and tertiary levels, math, science, social science)
1 year as Director of an NGO (~30 employees)
2 years work for a foreign government agency (policy, developing legislation, community development)
4+ years (by time of application) managing a small export-oriented business (5 employees)

Also some consulting and part-time work including a current position as Program Manager for a development project.

My concerns are:

My age - older than average but hopefully not too out there?

My work experience - it is without a doubt unique and pretty fascinating. Everyone I meet loves to hear about the things I've done and how I've gotten to the point I'm at today. However I'm not sure how beneficial this is when applying to MBA programs, and have read that many prefer a short resume. Mine is not short, and a bit all over the place early on (teaching along with work for the NGO, public, and private sectors - I've done a bit of everything!). There are also some gaps of around 4 months between my first and second, and second and third, jobs though I'm not sure if that's long enough to raise questions? Overall the work experience/resume factor is definitely my biggest concern.

I do love the applicant-initiated interview process for Tuck. I certainly have plenty to talk about and think I would do great in that setting.

Any input on this would be greatly appreciated!

Thanks!
You sound like a really interesting person... and that's a good thing in MBA admissions. You may, however, find you will get best results by conforming to convention in a few areas- like your resume. No matter how interesting you are, most likely you will still do better with a 1 page resume. Maybe you could be 2 pages- but learning how to distill down to the most important is a skill that will serve you will in this process. It sounds like you are doing everything right. We have some excellent counselors who are Tuck alums and they could be very helpful to you in this process so please keep us in mind- to learn more about how we can help you - here is a link to a free consult: https://stratusprep.com/free-consult/

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GMAT/MBA Expert

VantagePointMBA Senior | Next Rank: 100 Posts
Joined
22 Mar 2016
Posted:
38 messages
Followed by:
1 members
Upvotes:
5
Post Tue Jan 24, 2017 12:37 pm
That sounds like a good plan! Best of luck to you!

_________________
Vantage Point MBA Admissions Consulting

We are admissions consulting: reimagined. Click here to learn more!

  • +1 Upvote Post
  • Quote
  • Flag

GMAT/MBA Expert

Post Wed Jan 25, 2017 8:27 am
islander19 wrote:
Hi,

I'm looking for some input on my chances for MBA applications. My dream would be to go to Tuck and I plan to apply Early Action later this year. I would be 32 years old when applying, 33 years old at matriculation. I would also apply to a few other similar schools and likely one or two lower ranked. My goal for having an MBA is to go into management consulting with an international, particularly emerging economies, focus.

GMAT: I recently took a practice test from manhattanprep.com as an initial diagnostic, scored 720 (Q47/V42) rushing through and without bothering to look into how the test is setup or studying. I plan to take the real test in July (that's the closest date that I'll be near a test center) and am certainly aiming for 750+.

GPA: 3.6 from Ivy League, graduated cum Laude, High Honors with a degree in Social Sciences

Work Experience: I'm a U.S. citizen but all work experience is outside of the U.S. in (very) small developing countries, listed chronologically oldest to newest.

1 year volunteer teaching (secondary level, math and social science)
1.5 years paid teaching (secondary and tertiary levels, math, science, social science)
1 year as Director of an NGO (~30 employees)
2 years work for a foreign government agency (policy, developing legislation, community development)
4+ years (by time of application) managing a small export-oriented business (5 employees)

Also some consulting and part-time work including a current position as Program Manager for a development project.

My concerns are:

My age - older than average but hopefully not too out there?

My work experience - it is without a doubt unique and pretty fascinating. Everyone I meet loves to hear about the things I've done and how I've gotten to the point I'm at today. However I'm not sure how beneficial this is when applying to MBA programs, and have read that many prefer a short resume. Mine is not short, and a bit all over the place early on (teaching along with work for the NGO, public, and private sectors - I've done a bit of everything!). There are also some gaps of around 4 months between my first and second, and second and third, jobs though I'm not sure if that's long enough to raise questions? Overall the work experience/resume factor is definitely my biggest concern.

I do love the applicant-initiated interview process for Tuck. I certainly have plenty to talk about and think I would do great in that setting.

Any input on this would be greatly appreciated!

Thanks!
You sound like a really interesting person... and that's a good thing in MBA admissions. You may, however, find you will get best results by conforming to convention in a few areas- like your resume. No matter how interesting you are, most likely you will still do better with a 1 page resume. Maybe you could be 2 pages- but learning how to distill down to the most important is a skill that will serve you will in this process. It sounds like you are doing everything right. We have some excellent counselors who are Tuck alums and they could be very helpful to you in this process so please keep us in mind- to learn more about how we can help you - here is a link to a free consult: https://stratusprep.com/free-consult/

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islander19 Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
Joined
21 Jan 2017
Posted:
6 messages
Post Tue Jan 24, 2017 3:10 am
Hi,

Thank you both very much for your replies. That is certainly valuable feedback and it's good to hear that my work experience, while it could be a challenge, is not an insurmountable obstacle.

In the near term working on my GMAT is definitely my major focus. Based on the practice test I know that I'm all set with verbal if I slow down as I finished with lots of extra time. I do have areas to work on for the quant but I have a strong background from teaching math after college so I think it should come back easily. The advice to aim for 760+ is well taken and I believe within reach.

I am continuing to research schools to determine others that would be a good fit and while I'm certainly hoping for success with Tuck or one at a comparable level am also looking into Ross, Darden, and others.

I will continue my research and work on my resume and story and may get back at a later date.

Thanks

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