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Applying with less than average work experience

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Applying with less than average work experience

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Hi there,

Guys, I have roughly 2.5 years of work experience (will be one year more in matriculation) and I'm thinking to apply on 2nd round (early January). Since in most schools average work experience of classes is 5 years, is it disadvantageous to apply with less than average WE? Please note that I need full scholarship, so simply getting into the school isn't enough for me. Also, could anyone please suggest me specific schools to target where I can get a full scholarship based on my profile below?
25 year-old male from Azerbaijan
- Bachelors in Industrial Engineering and Management (courses were heavily on economics and management rather than technical) from a well-known auniversity in Azerbaijan.
- GPA 82/100
- GMAT working on
- IELTS - after GMAT
- WE: 3 months internship at Central Bank during undergrad, 5 months of international experience (Central Europe) as a trading and operations consultant at a brokerage firm, and its been 2 years that I've been working at Central Bank as a risk management specialist.
-extra curricular and leadership: I don't know whether it can be considered as an extra curricular-1 year of military service. During this period I've been promoted to unit commander position, I had a couple of soldiers in my unit. I thought it can be critical considering Azerbaijan is in harsh military situation. Also, I've conducted a pilot project single-handedly which encompassed several departments at the Central Bank. Now i'm team manager of the real project (I think it can be counted as a leadership experience as well)
- No community service. But I have a reason, I didn't have a such a luxury and time to work for free because at the age of 19 I lost my father, so I had to take care of my family and my studies.
-My goal is to switch to management consultancy.

Cheers.

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GMAT/MBA Expert

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Hi Mahammad,
There are a lot of reasons why someone with ~3 years of work experience at matriculation would be an appealing candidate for top business schools. You've got a terrific story to tell, and you come from a relatively under-represented country; all you need is a strong GMAT (i.e. at or above the median of your target schools), in my opinion, to be a competitive candidate for high-ranking MBA programs.
The lack of community service could be an issue, but given your family's needs, an optional essay would go a long way towards addressing that. Military service is a plus; it's considered community service of course depends on how voluntary it is, but military leadership experience is always an asset for MBA applications.
If you decide to apply next year instead of this year, community engagement would be something you might want to work on a bit. But I see no reason you shouldn't take a shot at applying now, if you have a good outcome to your GMAT.

You sound like a really interesting guy! I'd love to see you go for it.
Good luck,
Margaret Strother

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Margaret Strother wrote:
Hi Mahammad,
There are a lot of reasons why someone with ~3 years of work experience at matriculation would be an appealing candidate for top business schools. You've got a terrific story to tell, and you come from a relatively under-represented country; all you need is a strong GMAT (i.e. at or above the median of your target schools), in my opinion, to be a competitive candidate for high-ranking MBA programs.
The lack of community service could be an issue, but given your family's needs, an optional essay would go a long way towards addressing that. Military service is a plus; it's considered community service of course depends on how voluntary it is, but military leadership experience is always an asset for MBA applications.
If you decide to apply next year instead of this year, community engagement would be something you might want to work on a bit. But I see no reason you shouldn't take a shot at applying now, if you have a good outcome to your GMAT.

You sound like a really interesting guy! I'd love to see you go for it.
Good luck,
Margaret Strother
Dear Margaret,

Thank you very much for your comment and review.

Unfortunately, military service itself is mandatory in my country, but selecting units to serve, in my case Defense Against Air Attack, and hence fighting on the frontline was voluntary which I chose. If possible, could you please suggest me a couple of schools where I can get a full scholarship?

Cheers.

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Hi Mahammad,

Most MBA candidates at the top MBA programs have around 5 years of WE, but it doesn't mean you can't get accepted with less WE. Also, you should mention your military service since some programs will count it as WE.

Candidates with less WE are advised to compensate for it in other areas, such as strong academic background and strong GMAT. If you think that right now your profile is not strong enough for the programs you are aiming at, consider waiting a little longer before applying, or consider these programs for less experienced candidates: https://aringo.com/deferred-enrollment-mba-for-candidates-with-little-experience/, or even Master in Management programs: https://aringo.com/masters-in-management/.

Good luck!

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