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Polarized candidate. Where to apply?

Figure out where you wish to apply
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Polarized candidate. Where to apply?

by fehrbaseball » Fri Jan 11, 2013 1:37 am
I am completely unsure which schools would consider this candidate. Any help is appreciated.

The quick stats:
- 99% percentile GMAT
- 2.80 GPA (B.S. Physics undergrad from the U.C. system)
- 3+ years work experience (including a good promotion) in predictive analytics for a mid-sized tech company (NASDAQ-listed)
- Patented in predictive modeling
- Strong writer

The low GPA is due to several factors:
- External circumstances when beginning undergrad.
- Having empty units -- ie. classes I signed up for with no intention of attending -- in order to fulfill unit requirements for using certain school resources. Additionally, the physics program I was a part of purposely undervalues the units for upper division physics courses in order to graduate more knowledgeable students. (Admittedly, it was short-sighted to think that my GPA was irrelevant when selecting empty unit courses.)
- Physics program at the school I attended is, arguably, the school's calling card.

As schools (as somewhat of a rule, I've heard,) look to increase their GMAT and GPA averages year-over-year, I feel that a school lagging in their incoming GMAT score may consider me in the final round of application submissions. Am I off base in that assumption? And then, what schools should I consider? I understand that not all interviewees are accepted, but I have a strong personality that may play well provided I get that opportunity. Is it absurd to think some top ten schools would consider me?

Thanks.

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by machichi » Tue Jan 15, 2013 2:52 pm
Not to be rude, but it kind of sounds like you were a bit lazy in undergrad. The approach you might want to take is to explain that you are much more mature now, demonstrated by X, Y, and Z. Furthermore, your GMAT can and will erase any concern about your academic aptitude. Your GMAT will go a long way toward helping overcome your low GPA. There is a whole thread about this on gmatclub, which I encourage you to read. You may want to consider working on an outside transcript by getting A's at a community college.

Your work experience sounds solid, but I hope you're not applying until R1 of next year. R3 is a death march for most people. They will blink once for you in an earlier round, but there's no room for error in the last round. You have a shot at the top 10, especially if you're a strong writer as you say.
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