B-Schooled Podcast Episode #126: Things You’re Scared to Talk About (and Why You Really Should) Part 2

by Stacy Blackman Consulting, Oct 24, 2022

In this new episode of B-Schooled, Caryn Altman rejoins us for more real talk. Today’s topic: the complicated question of sharing something in your application of which you are not proud. This might mean explaining anything you wish you’d handled differently… from a low GPA to a lapse in judgment to something like a DUI.

The key to approaching these topics effectively is often LESS about the incident itself and much MORE about how you respond to and explain the topic in your application. Admissions officers want to understand how you handled the situation, what you learned from the experience, and/or how you have grown and changed.

In last week’s episode, we discussed:

• A low GMAT
• A mistake you made or something you regret (such as a DUI or an honor code violation)
• The need to *stand out* from the crowd (especially if you come from an overrepresented demographic)

And this week, we will tackle three additional topics with even more candor:
• Failing grades or low GPA
• Being a candidate that is significantly "older" or "younger" than other applicants
• A sneaking suspicion that your school selection is way out of reach

To be clear, this conversation is not just for people who’ve encountered these specific situations. The real takeaways from this episode focus not on the situation but an approach. And–let’s face it–who doesn’t have at least one part of their application they are nervous about?

Our special guest Caryn Altman worked as an Admissions Officer for the Kellogg School of Management, where she read and evaluated countless applications. Caryn also holds an MBA from Kellogg and has been a longtime admissions consultant with SBC.

This B-Schooled episode can be found here, or take a listen on any of the major podcast platforms below.

B-Schooled is available on most major podcast apps, including:

Apple Podcasts

Please be sure to subscribe to B-Schooled so that you don’t miss a thing. Also, if there’s something you’d like for us to cover in a future episode, please email [email protected]. We’d love to hear from you!


Stacy Blackman Consulting is the only MBA admissions firm with a complete panel of former Admissions Officers from every M7 program and the elite European MBA programs. If you are looking for guidance on your MBA application, we can help with hourly and comprehensive consulting services. Contact us to learn more.