Applying To Business School Next Year?

Then you’ll want to check out the recording of our recent webinar, Get Accepted in 2016: 7 Steps to a Strong MBA Application.

In the webinar, Linda Abraham paves the way to acceptance to b-school by exploring the things you can do NOW to increase your chances of acceptance later on. When those applications are released, you’ll be ready to tackle them head-on and complete them efficiently and successfully.

Watch the webinar now!

You’re just 7 steps away from creating your super-strong application (and getting accepted!). Get started now!

view the webinar

Accepted: The Premier Admissions Cosultancy

Jon Medved And OurCrowd: The Remarkable Story Of An Entrepreneur

Listen to our conversation with Jon Medved!Time flies. The Admissions Straight Talk podcast has hit the 100-episode mark! And in honor of our big milestone we invited a  most exciting guest yet.

Want to know what one of the most prominent entrepreneurs of our times has to say about leadership, graduate education, and bodysurfing?

For all this and more, listen to the recording of our interview with Jon Medved – CEO and founder of Our Crowd, venture capitalist, and serial entrepreneur.

00:03:43 – Jon’s solution to having too many shoeboxes: The world’s largest equity crowdfunding platform.

00:08:14 – What really matters to a VC when choosing a company to invest in.

00:10:17 – How a history major made it to the top of the business world with no formal business education.

00:14:09 – Qualities that young professionals need to cultivate. (Is luck quality?)

00:21:08 – Graduate education vs. common sense.

00:22:33 – Exciting new partnership between Wharton’s Social Impact Initiative and OurCrowd.

00:24:02 – A preview of the future of business and the world.

00:27:11 – Why Jon loves his job. (Who helps more people, Jon or Linda? Linda says “Jon.”)

00:28:28 – Entrepreneurs: Here is the best piece of advice you are going to get!

Want to leave us a Happy 100th message? We’d love to hear from you!

Click here to listen to the show!*Theme music is courtesy of

Related Links:

Our Crowd
OurCrowd Partners with Wharton Students to Launch Impact Investing Platform
• Wharton Essay Tips
Jon Medved, OurCrowd CEO, Interviewed (Video)

Relevant shows:

The Stanford MSx Program for Experienced Leaders
Which Schools are Good for PE/VC and VC-Backed Entrepreneurship
• Entrepreneurship at UCLA Anderson
Jeff Reid on Entrepreneurship
• Business, Law and Beyond: An Interview with John Engelman

MBA Admissions A-Z: 26 Great Tips - Download your free copy!

An Interview with Our Own: Robbie Walker

Learn more about Robbie and how she can help you get accepted!Curious about the life and times of our spectacular admissions consultants? Please enjoy our newest blog series in which we interview the fabulous people who make up the staff. Next up is…Robbie Walker.

Accepted: Can you tell us a little about yourself? Where and what did you study as an undergrad? Do you hold any graduate degrees?

Robbie: I grew up in northern Illinois in an area that my mother’s family homesteaded when they immigrated to America back in the early 1800s. We were a multi-generational household, and my six siblings and I shared many childhood adventures.

For college, I chose to attend Northwestern University (Evanston, IL) and studied Political Science. After earning my degree, I joined Real Estate Research Corporation (RERC), a consulting firm which, at the time, specialized in urban economics. I primarily advised governments at all levels (local, state, national) on how to develop and implement projects that would serve as a catalyst for implementing broader objectives. For instance, I led a groundbreaking project for a Chicago suburb that wanted to identify how to equitably assess fees on residential land use developers for the necessary schools, parks, water and sewage use that additional residents would require. I also helped lead a national study to assess the cost-benefit implications of active solar energy usage in residential developments across the United States for the US Dept. of Housing and Urban Development.

While working as a consultant, I found I needed a more structured approach to solve related business and financial issues, so I decided to get an MBA. My choice of an MBA program was predicated on a quite specific and individual calculation. First, since I would continue working full-time, my job tied me to a Chicago area school, which limited my choices. Second, I had already earned one degree at Northwestern and wanted to experience a different academic environment. Result: Chicago Booth was my best option. This is not a decision making process I necessarily recommend to my clients! Nonetheless, after several years of hard work and study, I earned my MBA.

While working at RERC, I met my future husband, a Japanese citizen who also earned his MBA at Chicago Booth and who subsequently moved his career into a different industry. We married, and when his new company asked him to move back to Japan to direct their Tokyo operations, we decided to accept the offer and moved our growing family to Japan. We lived in Tokyo for about 15 years.

During this time, I had to switch my career focus away from consulting, primarily due to language issues but also because I wanted to concentrate on the needs of our young children. I chose to teach English to adults (my clients were primarily career diplomats in the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs and C-level executives of major Japanese corporations) and freelance writing (for whichever publication that accepted my work!). Eventually, my freelance writing expanded to include editing the work of others, with a focus on business and scientific papers. To this day, I continue to write and edit on a freelance basis. I currently write a regular column for two publications, one in Japan and one in Mexico, and contribute to several blogs and news sources.

Accepted: What’s your favorite non-school/non-work book?

Robbie: It’s impossible to identify my favorite book in any context! Since I’ve always loved reading, I am fairly well read, so all I can say is that in the past few years, I’ve preferred non-fiction to fiction, tend to focus my reading on history and science, and have a particular love of biographies. I do have several favorite fiction authors and, if they’re alive, will read anything new that they publish, and I will also typically take a chance with a new author, especially women, whose book descriptions intrigue me.

Accepted: Can you walk us through your journey to becoming an admissions consultant for Accepted?

Robbie: My freelance editing work led me to becoming an Admissions Consultant. It started with a friend who handled applications for Japanese applicants to graduate school. She needed help handling her work load during a family crisis and asked if I’d be willing to assist her. Once I said yes, that was it – I was hooked!

I loved how admissions consulting combined my knowledge of graduate programs with my ability to advise individuals regarding their particular needs. Most especially, I loved how I can help clients zero in on telling their story in a way that made them unique. (In my opinion, that is the key to the success of my clients.) When my friend decided to leave the business, I explored my options at other firms and was fortunate to be “accepted by” In the past 8 years with, I’ve developed my expertise in business, law (including LLM), public policy and PhD programs at universities in North/South America, Europe and Asia, as well as expanding my network among AdCom Directors and fellow consultants throughout the world.

A consultant’s value is measured in part by providing the most informative, comprehensive and detailed information needed by a client. I work hard to offer my clients all the necessary information and insights necessary to their individual needs.

Accepted: What’s your favorite thing about consulting?

Robbie: My clients! (That’s an easy question!) Each is unique, each makes me optimistic about the future of business, and each teaches me something, however small.

Accepted: Do you miss teaching ESL? How do you think your teaching skills contribute to your work as a consultant?

Robbie: When we returned to the US (we naturally returned to the Chicago area, given my close family ties to the area), I taught ESL to adults as an adjunct Professor at a local college. My students came from everywhere in the world; in one class, 16 countries were represented among my 17 students, including the Republic of the Congo, Chile and Bulgaria, to name only three.

We moved to Baja, Mexico, when our youngest entered college, but I still teach ESL, although my teaching is now limited to children who are part of the Baja Scholarship Foundation (BSF). I’ve always believed strongly in giving back to my community, wherever I live, and this volunteer work is part of “acting on my word.” The children I teach weekly are quite poor but academically gifted; the mission of BSF is to help them become active participants in their community through funding of their education costs, and my English language instruction is provided as part of that mission.

It’s a joy to teach bright, motivated children. And that’s where I see one connection with my clients, who are also bright and motivated, albeit older. I would say that both groups (BSF students and Accepted clients) are among the smartest, most motivated people I’ve ever encountered in my life. It’s a real pleasure to work with them.

One major part of teaching is knowing how to draw people out, to get them to experiment with a new idea or concept or way of expressing themselves, so whether it’s with learning a different language or helping people uncover something in their background that is pertinent to a goal they want to achieve, my teaching experience contributes greatly to my work as a consultant (and vice versa).

Accepted: What are some of your favorite business school memories?

Robbie: My favorite business school memories include the day a professor won the Nobel Prize in Economics, a few life-long friends I met in the process of earning my degree, and my satisfaction at earning decent grades in quant-heavy courses given my decidedly non-quant background. I learned that Chicago Booth is truly oriented to the individual and open to giving a chance to those of us who don’t fit their typical profile.

Accepted: What are your top 3 admissions tips?

Robbie: I’m going to sound like an AdCom interview here, but learning the answers to these questions is, to me, key to helping my clients gain admission.

Number 1: I’m a big believer in goals and demonstrating how an MBA suits a career vision. ‘Why do you really need an MBA’ is almost always my first question for prospective clients.

Number 2: Why this school? All of the top schools know what they can do for you, the question is, what can you do for them? Show your fit.

Number 3: Why you? What makes you unique? Everyone has a story, and how you tell that story matters a lot. This is where I think I, as an admissions consultant, can make the biggest difference.

Learn more about Robbie and how she can help you get accepted!

View our catalog of MBA School AdmissionsAccepted: The Premier Admissions Cosultancy
Related Resources:

MBA Admissions Consulting and Editing Services
Law School Admissions Consulting and Editing Services
Why MBA?

4 Things To Do If You Can’t Define Your MBA Goals

Your post-MBA goals should be a guiding light in the application process.

Top MBA programs are looking for candidates who’ve got their heads on straight and have a clear idea of how a business degree will help shape their futures. It’s for this reason that the MBA goals essay is such an important element in the b-school application.

So what do you do if you don’t know what your post-MBA goals are? What should you do if, say, you are a career changer and know you want to acquire the skills that a business program will provide, but aren’t exactly sure which career direction you want to take post-graduation?  And finally, is it worth it to spend time exploring your post-MBA options (trying out different jobs or shadowing people in different professions) so that you can apply with a confident MBA goal, or is it better to try and jump right into a program, even if your goals are undefined?

Whoa. You have a lot of questions! Here are the answers: Yes, your post-MBA goals should be a guiding light in the application process, certainly the school selection part of it. And it’s not only worthwhile to spend time determining a post-MBA direction, it’s mandatory. You need to know why you want to devote time and money to an MBA before you apply. Undefined goals could transform your MBA investment into a painfully large expense.

Consider the following 4 tips to help you sort through the no-goal conundrum:

1. Think about what you like and dislike in your current and past jobs. Make a list of what you would like more of and what you would like less of.

2. Talk to people in positions you find attractive. Talk also to those who work in fields different from your own. Take friends out for coffee and conduct informal interviews or email a list of questions to people you know who have jobs that interest you.

3. Consider hiring a career counselor. (We can send a few names your way if you contact us – just mention that you read this post so we know how you got to us.)

4. Once you have narrowed down the number of possible goals or have some direction, look at the career listings of the larger employers in those areas. Read a few profiles of younger employees hired for those jobs, and see if you can network your way into talking to someone in the positions you find attractive.

In short, having no direction at all will make adcoms wonder why you’re putting the time, effort, and money into pursuing an MBA. They will also be very concerned that you will have difficulty finding an internship and ultimately a full-time position when you arrive on campus, floundering or mystified as to what you want to do. They don’t expect your goals to be carved in stone and they know you may develop new goals, but flexible is not the same as clueless. They want the former, not the latter.

Get clear, practical guidelines for answering the MBA goals essay question. Click here to download our free report.

Accepted: The Premier Admissions Cosultancy
Related Resources:

Why MBA, a free admissions guide
• Hone Your MBA Goals, a shovideo
What You Must Know Before Meeting Admisssions Directors

Catching Up with Dartmouth Tuck Student Dominic Yau

Read more interviews with MBA student bloggersThis interview is the latest in an blog series featuring interviews with current MBA students, offering readers a behind-the-scenes look at top MBA programs. And now for a follow up interview with Dominic Yau, who is about to complete his first year at Dartmouth Tuck. (We first met Dominic last year – you can read our first interview with him here.)

Accepted: Since we last spoke you applied to a bunch of b-schools. Where did you end up getting accepted and where are you currently attending?

Dominic: I ended up being accepted to the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth, and I am currently a first year there.

Accepted: How has it been so far? Is b-school as you expected it to be? Any surprises? 

Dominic: First year has been phenomenal. It has been everything I expected and more. On the academic front, I have definitely been challenged both from a breadth perspective. Tuck is a general management program and therefore the core curriculum covers all the key facets of a general manager’s toolkit.

On the recruiting side, it has been a very intense but rewarding experience. I knew going in that I wanted to go into management consulting but also explore a couple of other things. Tuck has given me the opportunity to explore and understand what I wanted out of my career.

Outside of the classroom and recruiting, I have been involved with a lot of clubs and other events from playing (tripod) ice hockey to hosting a UK table at the international dinner during our Diversity Conference. There is such a wide variety of things to get involved that the hardest thing is to pick and choose what you want to do.

Overall, my first year so far has been fantastic. Looking back, one thing that I am surprised by is some of the non-technical skills that I have learnt. One example is being more efficient at making trade-offs when you have limited time. Rather than waste time thinking about what I could be doing, I have gotten much better at deciding on what I want to do and how to use my time most effectively. I think this will be a valuable lesson in my life and in my career going forwards!

Accepted: Why did you choose Tuck? How is it the best fit for you?

Dominic: I chose Tuck because of its location, size, and community. I did my undergrad at a campus university and I knew I wanted a similar experience. Also coming from a large city like London and most likely working in large cities post-MBA, it was a great way of taking two years and doing something slightly different.

Tuck’s size was also a big draw for me. I know pretty much all of the first years and I have had interactions with a large percentage of the second years. This simply is not the case at some other schools. Tuck’s size also closes the gap between the school and its students. I can drop into our program office with any queries or reach out to meet one-on-one with another of the faculty at very short notice.

Finally, the community at Tuck is very strong. People go out of their way to help each other and support each other. I am surprised by the strength of the community on a daily basis.

Accepted: If you could change anything about the program, what would it be?

Dominic: There is not a lot I would change about Tuck. One area that I think Tuck is addressing and needs to continue to address to focus more broadly on global issues. It is great that the Class of 2017 will now have a requirement to undertake at least one trip or project globally during their two years. I think as globalization continues, it is deeply important to have the cultural sensitivity and the ability to work across borders.

Accepted: Are you involved in any clubs on campus? How central to student life is club involvement?

Dominic: I am a wine aficionado and I will be a co-Chair of the Wine Club next year. I also play tripod hockey. Overall clubs are an important part of the Tuck experience but I find that some of my best experiences are typically more ad hoc. Due to our class size, I know the folks who have similar interests as myself so it is very easy to find others who want to go for a hike, play pond hockey, try out local eateries, etc.

Accepted: Do you have an internship lined up for the summer? What role did Tuck play in helping you secure a position?

Dominic: I will be interning this summer with one of the Top 3 consulting firms in New York. I have had great support during my internship recruiting from the Career Development Office (CDO), my classmates, and the alumni network. The CDO has been instrumental in helping me over the last few months from practising cases and fit questions to more general advice about managing the recruiting process. As for my classmates, the second years have devoted a lot of time to first years in helping them get ready for case interviews.

Finally, I cannot say enough about Tuck’s alumni network. Typically, I get a response within 24 hours of reaching out to an alumni. They are also very gracious with their time. I had a call with an alum during his layover at an airport between flights back from a client. I also had mock interviews with several alums during the Christmas break when they should have been relaxing. I think this speaks volume to Tuck’s alumni network.

Accepted: Now that you’ve successfully applied to and gotten into b-school, you must have some good advice for our readers. What are your top 3 admissions tips?

Dominic: My 3 top tips are:

1. Be yourself

2. Be prepared

3. Find the right fit

For one-on-one guidance on your b-school applications, please see our MBA Application Packages. 

To read more about Dominic’s b-school journey, please check out his blog, Domotron. Thank you Dominic for sharing your story with us!

Download our free special report: Best MBA Programs
Accepted: The Premier Admissions Cosultancy
Related Resources:

The Tuck School of Business and the Global Insight Requirement
• Dartmouth Tuck 2015 MBA Questions, Deadlines, Tips
MBA Student Interviews