During the webinar, 9 Keys to Postbac Acceptance in 2015, Accepted consultant Alicia McNease Nimonkar will discuss…
• How a postbaccalaureate program can launch your medical career.
• Tips for identifying and selecting the best postbac program for you.
• Advice on how to strengthen your candidacy and submit a solid postbac application.
Alicia will also leave time at the end of the webinar to answer your questions.
The webinar will air live on Wednesday, March 18, 2015 at 5:00 PM PST/8:00 PM EST. Register now to reserve your spot!
It’s not even spring yet. So why am I nagging you to get moving on your MBA application prep?
Not just because those Round 1 deadlines creep up with wicked stealth and speed. But also because there is so much you can still do between now and then to improve your candidacy (sometimes a lot, sometimes on the margins, but margins matter). Also, preparing now will enable you to apply to more programs earlier, and therefore to adjust strategy in Round 2 if necessary.
So, what should you be doing NOW?
First, two obvious things.
GMAT: I’ve seen too many people leave the GMAT till late summer or early fall, get a lower score than they expect, and have to recalculate their plans. If you don’t have a GMAT score yet, NOW is the time to prepare and take the GMAT, ideally by end of spring. Then, if your score isn’t realistic for your schools of choice, you have time to retake the test, reconsider your target schools, or both. And you will have it behind you when you focus on the applications.
SCHOOL RESEARCH: It’s best to visit schools when classes are in session. So NOW is the ideal time to research schools for a preliminary list. I developed an easy-to-use resource, Best MBA Programs, A Guide to Selecting the Right One, to walk you through this process. This effort will also get you thinking about your profile strategically.
Then there are the less obvious things.
ACADEMIC RECORD: Is your academic record a potential weakness? There is time (not much), NOW, to take a relevant course or two, complete it, and have an A or two to report to the adcom as evidence of your ability to excel academically.
RECOMMENDATIONS: Not sure whom to ask for recommendations? Sort it out NOW, while there’s time to weigh the pros and cons of various options, to possibly broach the issue (directly or indirectly) with people, and adapt as needed. You do know whom you’ll ask? NOW is time to enhance your positive visibility to them, so they can’t help but write a scintillating letter.
LEADERSHIP: You can improve – deepen, broaden, refine – your leadership NOW and every day before your application. Whether or not you have a formal leadership role, you can always find ways to exercise informal leadership. And you can’t have too much leadership in an MBA application. If there isn’t space to write about it in essays, portray it in your resume.
GOALS: Naturally, since you’re planning to apply for an MBA, you know what your goals are. But what are you going to say about them of interest? About your planned industry, company, function? Read. Books, journals, company reports, not just the WSJ. And do informational interviews (use your undergrad alumni network). An interview needn’t be longer than 10 minutes with two good questions to be illuminating! Interesting, informed perspective on your goals will make your essay jump out from the sea of merely competent essays. But do this research NOW, to digest and integrate it well.
RESUME: NOW is also the perfect time to prepare or adapt your resume for business school. You can get it at least 95% done, and adjust as needed for any new developments later. This way, if you have a chance to visit or school or meet with an adcom member earlier than you planned, you’re ready.
Six months and counting to round 1 deadlines…
By Cindy Tokumitsu, author and co-author of numerous ebooks, articles, and special reports, including Why MBA and Best MBA Programs: A Guide to Selecting the Right One. Cindy has advised hundreds of successful applicants in her fifteen years with Accepted.com.
I’ve been working in graduate admissions for almost 20 years so I have witnessed this trend firsthand: Parents are playing a much larger role in the application process these days than they used to.
This isn’t necessarily a bad thing – parents can provide a lot of much-needed support (financial, practical, emotional) for their kids during the admissions process; but I cringe when I see parents overstepping their bounds, attempting to control their children’s actions and outcomes.
How much involvement is TOO MUCH involvement for parents of applicants? Check out these 3 tips:
• Make Sure Your Child’s in the Driver’s Seat. – When you take the lead in the admissions process, you’re essentially telling your child: “I don’t think you have what it takes to manage this process yourself.” And what you’re telling the school is: “My kid isn’t competent or ambitious enough to apply to school himself.” You can help your child apply, surely, but make sure that’s what you’re doing – helping them, and not the other way around.
• Your Child’s Voice Should be the Sole Voice of this Operation. – All communication with the school should be between your child – not you, the parent – and the school. Likewise, the voice your child uses to write her application essays should be her voice – and not yours. And it should go without saying that this advice relates to interviews as well. Help, guide, coach, and edit, but please never speak for your child.
• Help Your Child Deal with Disappointment. – Be it a rejection or a poor score, a parent needs to understand the role they play here. First, your child is the one experiencing this distress, not you. By showing your disappointment, you will only make your child feel worse, not to mention potentially preventing your child from continuing to move forward. Instead, allow your child time to express disappointment, provide the appropriate amount of comfort (you know your child best), and then encourage your child to persevere. Suggest that your applicant explore alternatives and examine the factors he or she can change to improve the outcome in the future. Play the role of the motivational coach; don’t play the blame game.
Not sure you can effectively guide your child through the grad school admissions process (in a balanced, non-pushy way of course)? Browse our catalog of services to access professional guidance today!
By Linda Abraham, president and founder of Accepted.com and co-author of the definitive book on MBA admissions, MBA Admission for Smarties: The No-Nonsense Guide to Acceptance at Top Business Schools.
This interview is the latest in an Accepted.com blog series featuring interviews with MBA applicant bloggers, offering readers a behind-the-scenes look at the MBA application process. And now…introducing our anonymous blogger, “John Thunder”…
Accepted: We’d like to get to know you! Where are you from? Where and what did you study as an undergrad? What is your current job?
John: I’m from the midwest and went to an Ivy League to study economics and mathematics. I was a former investment banker and currently work in investment management.
Accepted: Congrats on your recent acceptance! Can you tell us where you applied and where you got accepted/rejected/waitlisted?
John: I got accepted at Sloan. Waitlisted at Wharton and Booth. Rejected at Kellogg/HBS/Stanford GSB.
Accepted: And if you get more acceptances from the waitlists, how will you decide where to go?
John: I’m fortunate to receive an acceptance to one of my preferred schools. If I get off the waitlist at other schools, maybe I will reconsider.
Accepted: Can you share some admissions tips as an “overrepresented minority”? How would you advise others who are trying to stand out from the crowd?
John: This is the tough question. If I had to re-do my 2-3 year plan for MBA, I would do 1 year of international development in the “motherland” and/or get involved with organizations in those countries. I did not do anything different to standout, except I demonstrated that sure I have similar stats and background to others but coworkers ranked me as the top analyst each year out of the whole class. Instead of thinking about other “Asians,” I saw my application holistically with the applicant group.
Accepted: Do you have any other admissions advice for our applicant readers?
John: This is a stressful process. I took my GMAT in Fall 2013 to apply for Class of 2017. Get started early and have set goals. If you are targeting HBS/Stanford only, I recommend applying to only one of those round 1 and the other round 2 and go all-out to visit and hustle. I’ve seen success from those who did that.
Accepted: What is your post-MBA plan?
John: Finance has lost its luster. Please hire me Google.
Accepted: Can you tell us about your blog? When and why did you start blogging? What have you gained from the experience?
John: Kudos to the community created at GMATClub. I used it religiously to study for my GMATs. I just wanted to give back to that community. I was stressed out throughout the whole application process and it was helpful to see other applicants’ experiences. It’s important to pay-it-forward, and that’s what it’s about in business school.
For one-on-one guidance on your b-school application, please see our MBA Application Packages.
You can read more about John Thunder’s b-school journey by checking out his blog, John Thunder MBA. Thank you for sharing your story with us – we wish you loads of luck!
That’s right – we’re already talking about 2016 MBA applications! You may feel like you’ve got loads of time, but believe me…you’ve got loads to do!
We’d like to help you start out on the right foot by inviting you to our upcoming live webinar, Get Accepted in 2016: 7 Steps to a Strong MBA Application, in which Linda Abraham, Accepetd.com CEO & Founder, will outline the steps you can take NOW to increase your chances of a successful application next year.
Let me repeat this point: It’s NOT TOO EARLY to get started!
Remember, the early bird gets the worm – those who are prepared to hit the ground running once those apps are released are the ones who will stand a better shot at getting accepted.
Date: Wednesday, March 11, 2015
Time: 10:00 AM PT / 1:00 PM ET
(Spaces tend to fill up quickly, so grab your spot now!)