Profile evaluation request

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Profile evaluation request

by mschling52 » Wed Oct 01, 2008 3:51 pm
Hello,

First of all, thanks to all of the admission consultants who take the time to post on this forum...you provide some great information on the process!

I'm a 26-year-old male looking to apply to b-school this fall for entry to a full time program in the fall of '09. A little about my background:

Undergrad: 3.99 GPA from a small liberal arts school in OH, Valedictorian of my undergrad class, math major, economics minor. Several academic awards including Phi Beta Kappa. Played basketball all 4 years, named Academic All-American, and was selected for an NCAA postgraduate scholarship.

GMAT: 780 (50 Q, 47 V, 5.5 AWA)

Work Exp: Currently 3 years (4 upon entry) at a major insurance company. Started as an analyst in pricing department. No formal leadership title, but became a "go-to" person in the group, mentored newer analysts, led training programs, and was selected after about 6 months on the job to handle pricing analysis for the highest revenue business unit that our group supported. After about 2 years, transitioned into a higher level analyst position providing analytical support and recommendations to management for product, pricing, and marketing decisions within my assigned business unit. In addition to supporting the day-to-day operations, I've led analysis on at least one major project and provided ongoing performance reports on a key product initiative to senior management.

Extra-Curricular: Currently volunteer one night a week at a crisis nursery assisting staff w/ childcare for 3-5 year olds. Have also volunteered at fund raisers and completed over 40 hours of training in child development for the same organization. I took up flying about a year ago and recently earned my pilot's license and have a couple strong EC's from undergrad.

Why MBA: Given my educational and work background, I think I have a strong foundation of skills in quantitative analysis and problem solving. I see the MBA as a great way to leverage and improve upon those strengths while also learning the business fundamentals that are lacking from my formal education to date. I know there is a lot of emphasis on clear post-MBA goals, but I'm admittedly a bit hazy in this area...I think an MBA would be an exciting challenge and opportunity to develop personally and professionally that fits pretty well with my background, but don't have the clear, singular goal that it seems like admissions people prefer to see. If pressed, I'd say I'm probably most interested in finance and general management/strategy, but wouldn't be surprised if this changes as I gain exposure to other disciplines during b-school.

My current plan is to apply to OSU-Fisher, but I'm also looking to add a couple programs to this list that may be a good fit and would love to hear any suggestions that you have. What would my chances be at a "top 10" type program? I think the numbers are there, but I'm not sure how my work/leadership experience stacks up against the applicant pool at the top schools. How much does the lack of a well-defined and detailed post-MBA goal hurt in the admissions process? How vague is too vague in the requisite "what are your goals and how does xyz b-school help you accomplish them" essay?

Thanks again for your time and contributions to the forum!

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by Lisa Anderson » Fri Oct 03, 2008 7:16 pm
Dear mschling52,

I think you have a competitive profile for any school, including the top ten. However, you need to have a reason to be there. As bugmenot said, it is a means to an end. MBA programs are 22 months in length and your internship is critical--that means you have to have a career you are pursuing from basically day one when your internship search starts. Yes, you can change your mind in the program, but you will be expected to present a solid rationale for why business school and why this particular program. Until you have a more definitive career goal, I think you are giving the schools a reason to reject you. Admissions is too competitive to give schools a reason to reject.

2 cents poorer,
Lisa
Lisa Anderson
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Stacy Blackman Consulting

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