Accepted Admissions Consulting Blog http://blog.accepted.com Admissions consulting and application advice Fri, 24 Apr 2015 15:51:56 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2 Catching Up with Dartmouth Tuck Student Dominic Yau http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/24/catching-up-with-dartmouth-tuck-student-dominic-yau/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/24/catching-up-with-dartmouth-tuck-student-dominic-yau/#respond Fri, 24 Apr 2015 15:51:56 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29949 This interview is the latest in an Accepted.com 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 […]

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Read more interviews with student bloggersThis interview is the latest in an Accepted.com 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

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The Increasing Value of Work Experience in Law School Applications http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/23/the-increasing-value-of-work-experience-in-law-school-applications/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/23/the-increasing-value-of-work-experience-in-law-school-applications/#respond Thu, 23 Apr 2015 16:02:42 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=30242 The Harvard Crimson reports that Harvard Law School’s admissions policies over the last few years actively prefer applicants with work experience post-undergrad and pre-law school. In the past, close to 50% of incoming HLS students were straight out of undergrad, but since 2009, that percent has been decreasing steadily. Now, ¾ of each incoming class […]

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Check out the 8 Tips for Law School Admissions Success!

Have low stats? Get a job!

The Harvard Crimson reports that Harvard Law School’s admissions policies over the last few years actively prefer applicants with work experience post-undergrad and pre-law school.

In the past, close to 50% of incoming HLS students were straight out of undergrad, but since 2009, that percent has been decreasing steadily. Now, ¾ of each incoming class has some type of post-undergraduate work experience.

This trend is likely to continue as law schools begin to focus on students who are self-directed and bring value to the law school class beyond a sharp mind.  The Crimson quotes an admissions officer as saying, “[Work experience] is something we actively preference and look for in the application process.” The same admissions officers and professors point out that work experience is an additional asset when looking for post-graduation employment.

What are the takeaways from this trend? First, if HLS actively prefers applicants with work experience, then other top-tier schools will certainly follow (if they haven’t already). Second, it means that candidates with lower GPAs and LSAT scores can bolster their application with meaningful work experience.

If you are waiting to apply to next year, be sure to increase your chance of admissions by finding meaningful work. Furthermore, be sure that your personal essay emphasizes this experience and what you have learned.
8 Tips for Law School AdmissionsJessicaPishkoJessica Pishko graduated with a J.D. from Harvard Law School and received an M.F.A. from Columbia University. She spent two years guiding students through the medical school application process at Columbia’s PostBacc Program and teaches writing at all levels. 

Related Resources:

From Example to Exemplary
• Beware of High-Cost, Low-Value Law Degrees
How I Wrote a Personal Statement that Got Me Into Harvard Law School

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Experiences That Count For Medical School Reapplicants http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/23/experiences-that-count-for-medical-school-reapplicants-2/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/23/experiences-that-count-for-medical-school-reapplicants-2/#respond Thu, 23 Apr 2015 15:32:59 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=30257 In the final section of our Medical School Reapplicant Advice: 6 Tips for Success series, we’ll discuss how reapplicants should improve, and then present, their experiences. One last factor that can seriously hurt your chances is a lack of substantive, ongoing experiences. Medical schools want students who are passionate and committed – to the world around them […]

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Click here for our med school admissions 101 page

Do your experiences speak to your commitment to medicine? 

In the final section of our Medical School Reapplicant Advice: 6 Tips for Success series, we’ll discuss how reapplicants should improve, and then present, their experiences.

One last factor that can seriously hurt your chances is a lack of substantive, ongoing experiences.

Medical schools want students who are passionate and committed – to the world around them as well as to medicine. The AAMC says,

“Most volunteer experiences are valuable and will provide you with well-rounded experiences. Just make sure you have at least one solid health care-related experience, in addition to your non-medical volunteer work, so that your experiences speak to your commitment to medicine.”

It’s hard to convince an admissions committee that you want to pursue a medical career if you haven’t spent time in a clinical environment. Shadowing can give you a peek into that world, and it is a wonderful way to learn about the different specialties. But to demonstrate the kind of ongoing, substantive involvement that will make an impact, you’ll need to go further.

If you’ve identified your clinical exposure as a problem area, the American Medical Student Association’s Pre-medical Access to Clinical Experience (PACE) guide is a valuable starting point.

• Volunteer at your local hospital or free clinic. Some positions won’t offer much patient contact, but some involve providing patients with pre-exam instructions, entertaining sick children, and escorting patients to various areas. Areas like Surgical Recovery Units and Emergency Departments often allow chances for patient interaction. See what’s on offer.

• Work as a Certified Nursing Assistant with a nursing home or home care program. Training takes 6-12 weeks, after which you can help in patient support roles.

• Train and work as an Emergency Medical Technician on campus or in your community.

• Join the staff at a summer camp for children with disabilities or chronic illness. Listings like Summer Camp Staff can put you in touch.

• Intern or volunteer with your county health department. Many opportunities will put you in touch with physicians and public health experts, as well as affected populations.

• See if your hospital offers a Hospital Elder Life Program. They’re often seeking volunteers to work with their elderly patients, as are hospices and nursing homes.

• Find overseas opportunities. Programs like Gap Medics can help organize placements. Before seeking an overseas position, however, take a look at the AAMC’s guidelines.

Gaining substantive, ongoing clinical experience can be challenging, since anything significant requires a medical license. And like improving your GPA, this isn’t something that you can fix quickly. Hopefully any volunteer activities begun before your last application are ongoing – in that case, you’re in good shape to reapply with a stronger application. But it’s important not to rush this step – reapplying before you’ve had time to develop solid experiences in this area could lead you right back to the start.

As you prepare for your reapplication, try to stay optimistic. What you’ve been through hasn’t been easy, but it should have been a learning experience. Now wiser and more qualified, you stand a much better chance at getting into medical school.

Thanks for joining us on our adventure through the med school reapplication process. Please be in touch if you have any questions — we’re here to help YOU get Accepted!

Reserve your spot for the webinar!

Cydney Foote By , Accepted consultant and author of Write Your Way to Medical School, who has helped future physicians craft winning applications since 2001.

Related Resources:

A Window into the World and Life of Medical Scribes
Moving Forward After Medical School Rejection
5 Tips for Aspiring Pre-Med Researchers

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Making Friends with the GRE: How To Overcome Test Anxiety and Perform at Your Best http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/22/making-friends-with-the-gre-how-to-overcome-test-anxiety-and-perform-at-your-best/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/22/making-friends-with-the-gre-how-to-overcome-test-anxiety-and-perform-at-your-best/#respond Wed, 22 Apr 2015 16:13:48 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=30227 “I can’t stop trembling….can’t eat….cry for little or no reason….I am so nervous.”  All of this from Janelle, a prospective graduate student on her response to scheduling a GRE test date.  I was not surprised that Janelle was nervous as almost all prospective graduate students are a bit anxious about admissions’ tests.  However, Janelle took […]

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Click here for more GRE tips“I can’t stop trembling….can’t eat….cry for little or no reason….I am so nervous.”  All of this from Janelle, a prospective graduate student on her response to scheduling a GRE test date.  I was not surprised that Janelle was nervous as almost all prospective graduate students are a bit anxious about admissions’ tests.  However, Janelle took “anxious” to a whole new level.   It was clear to me that I would need to develop a somewhat different plan of action to successfully help Janelle perform at her very best on this exam.

My first step was to listen carefully as Janelle shared all her feelings and fears. She said that she actually felt better just by having someone listen without judgement.  I told her that I would brainstorm some options and we scheduled a follow-up meeting.

I decided to “borrow” some of the techniques I use to deal with speaker anxiety in the public speaking classes that I teach at the undergraduate level. I was planning to use cognitive restructuring– changing the way we think about something.

At our next meeting I told Janelle that I had developed a three stage strategy to position her for success. I asked her to think about the GRE process like the development of a relationship.  In other words going from the acquaintance level to friend level to intimate level.   We were going to “Make Friends with the GRE.”  Here’s how we did it:

STAGE 1: Aquaintance Level—-This is the “getting to know you” stage of the process.

• Understand the GRE Testing program- Research the GRE general test and the discipline-specific subject tests especially in terms of available test administration dates, time limitations on retakes, score delivery options, etc.

• Determine which tests are required by the schools/programs of your interest—Check the admission criteria and the application deadlines to determine which tests are required and the application deadlines so that you can schedule the appropriate exams to meet all of the criteria of the school/programs of your choice. Keep in mind that while the GRE general test has multiple test administration sites and dates, the GRE subject test administrations are often scheduled only 2 or 3 times per admission cycle. Advance and careful planning is necessary to meet these deadlines so that you do not find yourself in a situation where your application is not complete by the deadline date.  Many programs will only review complete applications.

• Learn even more by surveying and requesting feedback from others who have taken the exam.  They may well have some tidbits of advice for you.   They may alert you to specific pitfalls to avoid.  Keep a list for future reference.

STAGE 2: Friendship Level— This is the “let’s become friends” stage of the process.

• Visit the ETS website to learn about the GRE subject tests offered and to access the associated subject test review books which will provide details on the content areas for the test, the weights assigned to each topic, as well as a practice test. This will provide you with a guide on what to study as well as how much time to allocate to specific topics. The subject test practice book can be downloaded from the web free of charge or will be mailed when you register for the exam.

• To prepare for the GRE general test, you should invest the time to diagnose the skill areas that need the most attention by identifying areas of weakness that require intensive review. These may include, but are not limited to, reading for meaning, analyzing and general organization of your ideas in short essay format, general mathematics, algebra, geometry, charts, etc.

• Take advantage of the diagnostic services offered by ETS which includes GRE’s Diagnostic Tests and Score It Now!, the online writing practice. Check out these low cost options on the ETS website.

• Make use of the GRE Powerprep software for reviews of the verbal and quantitative measure sections of the GRE exam.

• Be prepared to write 2 timed essays. One essay will present your perspective on an issue and the second essay will assess your ability to analyze an argument.  You can practice typing an essay response under timed conditions using GRE Powerprep software or you can pay for Score- it -Now! for online writing practice. The analytical writing measure serves as an assessment of critical thinking and the following analytical and writing skills:  articulation of complex ideas, clear and effective examination of claims and evidence, supporting ideas with relevant reasons and explicit examples, preparing a well-focused and coherent discussion, and displaying mastery of standard written English.

• Throughout this entire stage use positive self-talk as a confidence booster.  Place the emphasis on all of the progress you have made and continue to make.

(On a side note, I made sure that I was always available for confidence boosting and positive feedback)

 STAGE 3Intimate Level—- this is the commitment stage of the process.

• Become comfortable taking a computer delivered, timed, online exam by practicing in that type of environment.  If you only practice using a review book, the new delivery format may increase your level of anxiety and, as such, may impact your performance.

• Look back at how far you have come and continue to invest in the relationship you have established.  You may even learn to enjoy the challenge and the rewards that the relationship may bring.

• Last but not least, allow yourself enough time for the relationship to strengthen (prepare and study for the exam) and take hold.

At this point I am sure you are wondering if Janelle was successful.  Yes she was–she handled the stress very well and was accepted to her top choice schools. I was certainly proud to have helped her achieve her goal.

Learn how to use sample essays to create an exemplary essay of your own!Carol DrummerBy Carol Drummer, Former Hofstra University Dean of Graduate Admissions, who for 10 years reviewed and signed off on over 4500 admissions decisions per year and has taught communications and rhetoric since 1991.

Related Resources:

The GMAT, GRE and the Guy Who Knows Them Well
Should You Take the GMAT or the GRE?
Why You Don’t Need a Perfect GRE Score

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The Admissions Team At The Very Center Of Business http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/22/the-admissions-team-at-the-very-center-of-business/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/22/the-admissions-team-at-the-very-center-of-business/#respond Wed, 22 Apr 2015 11:00:44 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=30273 If Columbia Business School is the name you doodle on back of your notebooks, then you’ll want to get to know the folks who hold the key to acceptance. Click here to listen to the recording of our conversation with the CBS admissions team – although they sound more like a family- and find out […]

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Listen to the show!If Columbia Business School is the name you doodle on back of your notebooks, then you’ll want to get to know the folks who hold the key to acceptance.

Click here to listen to the recording of our conversation with the CBS admissions team – although they sound more like a family- and find out what the masterminds who shape the MBA class have to say about the admissions process and Columbia B-School.

00:03:18 – Meet the Columbia Business School Admission Team and hear why they love their jobs!

00:08:00 – An overview of the 2-year MBA Program at Columbia.

00:11:04 – What the J-Term is and who it’s for.

00:14:55 – A preview of the 2015-16 application, and what they’re looking for in this year’s essays.

00:18:07 – No longer a pilot program: No-cosignor loans available for international students.

00:20:58 – Why apply early decision.

00:24:13 – The journey of a submitted CBS application.

00:27:07 – The format and purpose of a CBS interview.

00:30:00 – Great features of CBS that the adcom members wish prospective students would know about.

00:36:47 – Suggestions for waitlisted applicants.

00:39:44  – Rejection does happen. What next?

00:44:27  – Ingredients of a successful application.

00:48:38  – The most common MBA application mistake. (But you won’t do this, right?)

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

Related Links:

Columbia MBA Admissions
• Columbia J-Term
• Columbia JTerm app to be Released Early
• Experiences & Advice from Columbia MBA Student Kendall Miller
• Columbia 2014-15 MBA Essay Tips and Deadlines
• Get Accepted to Columbia Business School – free webinar recording

Related Shows:

Making International Student Loans a Prime Investment
• The Facts About Financial Services
Exploring the Part-Time MBA Options at NYU Stern
At the Nexus of Business & Law: Penn/Wharton’s JD/MBA
• Bruce DelMonico on The Yale School of Management

Check Out Admissions Straight Talk in iTunes! Check Out Admissions Straight Talk in Stitcher!

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An Interview With Our Own: Dr. Rebecca Blustein http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/21/an-interview-with-our-own-dr-rebecca-blustein/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/21/an-interview-with-our-own-dr-rebecca-blustein/#respond Tue, 21 Apr 2015 17:55:40 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29919 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 Accepted.com staff. First up is…Dr. Rebecca Blustein. Accepted: Can you tell us a little about yourself? Where and what did you study as an undergrad? Do you […]

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

Rebecca and Alex Trebek. Rebecca was a contestant on Jeopardy in March 2012. She came in second place!

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 Accepted.com staff. First up is…Dr. Rebecca Blustein.

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

Rebecca: I earned my BA at UCLA (with a double major in English and Comparative Literature). After that, I went to Ireland for my MA in Old and Middle Irish. Then I returned to UCLA for my PhD in Comparative Lit. I’m a California native – I grew up in Oakland and now live in Los Angeles with my husband and two cats.

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

Rebecca: Hmm…that’s tough – there are too many to choose! I read almost constantly. (My Kindle is my insomnia buddy!) For light reading, I like mystery novels. To cheer me up if I’m having a bad day, PG Wodehouse is unbeatable. (I have a shelf full of his books.) And every once in a while I come across a book I think is so good I flip right back to the beginning and read it again as soon as I finish it. (Most recently: Hilary Mantel’s Bring up the Bodies.)

Accepted: How have your travels around the world influenced you as a writer?

Rebecca: In addition to living in Ireland for a year, I spent a summer in Russia and a month in Israel, and backpacked around Europe. I think that studying languages made me a better writer, and traveling made me a sharper observer.

Accepted: Can you talk about the road that led you to becoming an admissions consultant for Accepted? What jobs and experiences led you to this point?

Rebecca: During grad school, I took a job working as a counselor at the scholarship office on campus. That work – leading workshops, coaching students on their personal statements, helping them find funding for school, etc. – made me realize I really love working one-on-one with students to help them improve their writing and achieve their goals.

Accepted: What’s your favorite thing about consulting?

Rebecca: I enjoy working with people who are really excited about their plans for grad school – and it makes me happy to be able to help them through the process.

Accepted: How did funding applications become one of your specialties?

Rebecca: I worked at UCLA’s Scholarship Resource Center for four years before joining Accepted. I also successfully applied for various types of funding myself – so I know, first of all, what goes into the process, and second of all, what a big difference scholarships can make. With tuition rates what they are – across all disciplines and at all levels of study – scholarships are a great way of lowering loan debts and increasing access.

Accepted: What sorts of applicants do you mostly work with?

Rebecca: Master’s and PhD, across all fields. I also often work with medical and dental school applicants.

Accepted: What are your top 3 admissions tips?

Rebecca: Research your options. Plan ahead. And stay organized.

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

Download our free guide: GET YOUR GAME ON: Preparing for Your Grad School ApplicationAccepted: The Premier Admissions Cosultancy

Related Resources:

Graduate School Admissions Consulting and Editing Services
Med School Admissions Consulting and Editing Services
Plotting Your Way to a PhD: 6 Topics in PhD Admissions, a free admissions guide by Dr. Rebecca Blustein

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6 Tips for Applying to Business School with Low Stats http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/21/6-tips-for-applying-to-business-school-with-low-stats/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/21/6-tips-for-applying-to-business-school-with-low-stats/#respond Tue, 21 Apr 2015 16:09:46 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=30160 For most business school applicants, “low stats” are GMATs and GPAs at the lower end of or below the mid-80% range for a given school. It may be difficult to find average GPAs, but if you have a 2.6, you know it’s low for almost any MBA program. Except for the most elite schools, where […]

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Webinar: Get Accepted to Top B-Schools with Low Stats!

Can you show the adcom an upward trend?

For most business school applicants, “low stats” are GMATs and GPAs at the lower end of or below the mid-80% range for a given school. It may be difficult to find average GPAs, but if you have a 2.6, you know it’s low for almost any MBA program. Except for the most elite schools, where the number is higher, a GPA below 3.0 warrants a deliberate effort to counterbalance.

Here are 6 tips for applying with low numbers:

1. Analyze your situation. Which numbers are low – test score (GRE or GMAT), GPA, or both? If your GPA is low, did you have an upward trend that would show the committee you improved during college? Did you have one bad semester that pulled you down? If the problem is your test score, is there one section that is stronger than the other?

2. Address low quant scores (GMAT/GRE and transcript) by: taking additional courses for higher grades; highlighting your quant-oriented achievements in your essays; and asking recommenders to confirm your quantitative ability.

3. Address low verbal scores (GMAT/GRE and transcript) by: writing fantastic essays; taking additional courses that focus on business communication or involve substantial writing; and asking recommenders to comment on your communication skills.

4. Make your essays count! Draw on examples of your accomplishments, leadership skills, and exceptional impact to counterbalance the low scores.

5. Pick the right schools to apply to. Some schools are more focused on numbers, while others are known for a more holistic review.

6. Consider the optional essay. If your scores are below the 80% range, you’ll probably want to acknowledge and provide context for your situation. The optional essay provides an opportunity to briefly explain the circumstances behind your scores. If you write the optional essay, make it short and straightforward. Provide a brief explanation, take responsibility, and focus on evidence of your talents that counters the impression made by the low stats. Also, explain (or, ideally, show through example and anecdote) that either you have dealt with the problem causing the poor grades, or the circumstances no longer apply.

Download our free special report: Best MBA Programs

Accepted: The Premier Admissions Cosultancy
Related Resources:

Navigate the MBA Maze
Do Low Stats Sink Your App?
Should You Retake the GMAT?

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Exclusive Low Stats MBA Webinar Airing Live on Wednesday! http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/20/exclusive-low-stats-mba-webinar-airing-live-on-wednesday/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/20/exclusive-low-stats-mba-webinar-airing-live-on-wednesday/#respond Mon, 20 Apr 2015 17:26:50 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29999 You have just a few days left to register for our upcoming webinar and make time to focus on what we promise will be an enlightening, practical, and helpful presentation on how to get into top business schools despite low GMAT/GPA scores.Register ASAP for Get Accepted to Top B-Schools with Low Stats to reserve your […]

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You have just a few days left to register for our upcoming webinar and make time to focus on what we promise will be an enlightening, practical, and helpful presentation on how to get into top business schools despite low GMAT/GPA scores.Register for the webinar!Register ASAP for Get Accepted to Top B-Schools with Low Stats to reserve your spot.

Grab Your Spot! We’ll see you at 10:00 AM PST/1:00 PM EST on Wed morning (April 22nd).

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5 Things to Avoid in Your Med School Personal Statement http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/20/5-things-to-avoid-in-your-med-school-personal-statement/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/20/5-things-to-avoid-in-your-med-school-personal-statement/#respond Mon, 20 Apr 2015 16:52:15 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29863 1. Don’t write a resume in prose. Medical schools don’t want to see a list of every accomplishment or award. They want specific details and stories that give them an idea of who you are and what kind of physician you will be. 2. Don’t use clichéd language. The admissions committee reads so many personal […]

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Be sure to click here and register for the webinar!

Make sure your personal statement is polished and flawless.

1. Don’t write a resume in prose. Medical schools don’t want to see a list of every accomplishment or award. They want specific details and stories that give them an idea of who you are and what kind of physician you will be.

2. Don’t use clichéd language. The admissions committee reads so many personal statements that cliché language will mark you as someone who didn’t put enough original thought into your personal statement.

3. Don’t talk too much about other people. It can be tempting to talk about mentors or other doctors, but the personal statement needs to focus on you.

4. Don’t make excuses. If you have low grades, don’t over-explain or make too many excuses for your performance. Just admit your mistake and point to other evidence that you know how to perform academically.

5. Don’t be sloppy. Grammar and spelling errors are the sign of someone who doesn’t take the process seriously. Don’t give the admissions committee a reason to put your essay in the “no” pile because you didn’t take the time to proofread.

If you avoid these common mistakes, you will be able to write a med school personal statement that shines. For more, be sure to check out my webinar The 5-Step Guide to Successful Medical School Personal Statements.

Register for the 5-Step Guide to Successful Medical School Personal Statements

JessicaPishkoJessica Pishko graduated with a J.D. from Harvard Law School and received an M.F.A. from Columbia University. She spent two years guiding students through the medical school application process at Columbia’s PostBacc Program and teaches writing at all levels. 

Related Resources:

Ace the AMCAS Essay
7 Reasons Why Medical School Applicants Are Rejected
An Inside Look at The Medical School Journey

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Small San Diego B-School Gets Big Boost http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/19/small-san-diego-b-school-gets-big-boost/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/19/small-san-diego-b-school-gets-big-boost/#respond Sun, 19 Apr 2015 16:39:14 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=30135 On April 9, the Rady School of Management at UC San Diego announced a new $100 million gift from philanthropists Evelyn and Ernest Rady—one of the largest donations ever to a US business school, and especially significant given the small size of the program, which was founded only a decade ago. The Rady Family Foundation […]

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Click here to download a free copy of "Best MBA Programs: A Guide to Selecting the Right One" On April 9, the Rady School of Management at UC San Diego announced a new $100 million gift from philanthropists Evelyn and Ernest Rady—one of the largest donations ever to a US business school, and especially significant given the small size of the program, which was founded only a decade ago. The Rady Family Foundation has previously made several large gifts to the school, including $30 million in 2004, which helped establish and grow the business school at UCSD.

According to Robert Sullivan, the Dean of the Rady School, the new gift will go towards attracting top faculty, endowing scholarships and fellowships to bring in high achieving students, developing institutes, and creating a new master’s program in “Big Data.” The school hopes to continue capitalizing on UCSD’s strengths in innovation and the health sciences.

The Rady School is a small program (only 57 entering MBA students in 2014), with a high proportion of international students. For the most recent class, the median GMAT score was 680 and median GPA was 3.4. Tuition for California residents is $44,000, and $49,000 for out-of-state students. In addition to the full and part-time MBA programs, the school also offers a PhD and Master of Finance, and will soon launch master’s degrees in Business Analytics and Accounting.  The most recent Rady gift will help develop these programs as well.

Evelyn and Ernest Rady are active in the San Diego community and have funded many organizations, including the Rady Children’s Hospital, Scripps Health and the Salk Institute for Biological Studies.

The Rady School has been steadily rising in the rankings—placing 51st overall in BusinessWeek’s B-School rankings in 2014, and 1st for Intellectual Capital. With this substantial gift, the university and the Rady School will have the means to grow their young program and continue to build their reputation.
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Related Resources:

Best MBA Program: A Guide to Selecting the Right One 
Business School Zones for Top Programs
MBA Rankings: What You Need to Know

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Do Low Stats Sink Your App? http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/19/do-low-stats-sink-your-app/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/19/do-low-stats-sink-your-app/#respond Sun, 19 Apr 2015 15:55:28 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=30165 Applicants and Admissions Directors almost always seek the same thing. Applicants want to be desired by Admissions Directors and Admissions Directors want their schools to be desired by applicants. Applicants want to optimize their ability to gain admission to the highest-ranking school that fits their education/career needs, and Admissions Directors want to optimize their ability […]

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Got low stats? Join our webinar, Get Accepted to Top B-Schools With Low Stats!

If you have low stats, you’ll have to be strategic about your application choices.

Applicants and Admissions Directors almost always seek the same thing. Applicants want to be desired by Admissions Directors and Admissions Directors want their schools to be desired by applicants. Applicants want to optimize their ability to gain admission to the highest-ranking school that fits their education/career needs, and Admissions Directors want to optimize their ability to climb in the rankings, so that applicants will continue to find their schools desirable.

Logic has it that if Admissions Directors can change the input of the rankings by increasing test scores and GPA (a metric that fails to take into account the school of origin and the rigor of the curriculum), then the school should climb in the rankings. However, in a year like 2015, where 20% of the schools that consistently see 80% of the applicant pool all had double-digit application increases, we know the schools will stay relatively the same in the rankings. In fact, the USNews ranking hasn’t changed dramatically over the years for this very reason:  the schools move in a group.

It’s a vicious cycle that often leaves incredibly gifted and desirable applicants in the dust. It’s also a vicious cycle that leaves incredibly forward thinking/innovative schools in the dust.

If you are an applicant with high aspirations and low statistics, you need to be strategic about your actions and your application choices but there are also several things you can do to improve your chances of acceptance.

1. Request an assessment: Obtain a realistic assessment from an admissions officer or an admissions consultant.  The assessment should give you an indication of schools that would be stretch for you, schools that match your qualifications, and schools that you should select as safeties.  You would be surprised to learn the number of C-level executives and successful entrepreneurs who attended safety schools.

2. Cast your net widely: Note that the larger the class, the better an admissions director can hide his or her lower statistic candidates. Look at the Forbes wealthiest individuals and aside from the over-proportional number of drops outs (note: I believe in education opening doors and do not condone dropping out of school even if you are Bill Gates, Larry Ellison, Marc Zuckerberg or Sheldon Adelson), you will see a lot of billionaires that attended schools that many prospective students don’t have on their radar.

3. Be proactive:  if your grades tanked, take classes to mitigate concerns before you apply.  If your scores tanked, obtain tutoring you need to bring your score up (tutors have helped my clients increase their scores dramatically in just a few hours of intense study).

4. Show your interest:  Visit the school.  Get to know students and alumni who can go to bat for you on your behalf.

5. Be interesting:  One-trick ponies don’t make for interesting reading. The Art of Admissions is very much like blind dating.  It’s up to you to get the admissions committee interested in eating a 5-course meal with you rather than speeding through a cup of coffee.

6. Make a compelling case of acceptance.  Show fit with the school’s culture, strengths, and values. Reveal leadership, contribution, impact, innovation, and a track record that will cause the admissions readers to say “Wow!”

As an admissions director, I was more likely to invite the person behind an interesting, well-written application for an interview – regardless of stats.  If a candidate could engage me in the interview, I would recommend a well-spoken, witty candidate over someone who had high numbers and offered only one dimension.

Of these lower statistics students whom I accepted, many have become successful business people – and some of the most prestigious alumni.
Download your free copy of Navigating the MBA Maze!
Natalie Grinblatt Epstein By , an accomplished Accepted.com consultant/editor (since 2008) and entrepreneur. Natalie is a former MBA Admissions Dean and Director at Ross, Johnson, and Carey.

Related Resources:

That GMAT Score: Implications for Your MBA Application, a free webinar
Low GPA? Don’t Panic…Yet.
MBA Rankings: Why Should I Care?

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4 Tips for the New MBA Admit http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/17/4-tips-for-the-new-mba-admit/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/17/4-tips-for-the-new-mba-admit/#respond Fri, 17 Apr 2015 16:20:12 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29789 Do you think you’re done with my advice now that you have received that acceptance letter? Not so fast. I still have a tip or two for you. There are a few things you can do to prepare for your MBA studies and enhance your chances of getting a great internship and ultimately post-MBA job. […]

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Download 12 Terrific Tips for MBA Applicants now!

Prepare now and hit the ground running when classes start.

Do you think you’re done with my advice now that you have received that acceptance letter? Not so fast. I still have a tip or two for you. There are a few things you can do to prepare for your MBA studies and enhance your chances of getting a great internship and ultimately post-MBA job.

Take note of the following 4 tips:

1. Consider a pre-MBA internship. Especially if you are a career changer, consider asking your employer if she can give you an internship more related to your post-MBA goals. I know there aren’t too many employers that will do so, but some will. If yours is one of them, take advantage of the opportunity. Your employer will have a motivated employee until the last day and you will have a valuable learning experience…along with a satisfied employer.

2. Use the next several months to explore your intended fields. Set up information interviews with people in your field to find out what courses they found most valuable when they were in b-school. Ask about good internship options and typical career paths. Remember: You are not asking for a job or internship at this point, just information. But I have heard of informational interviews leading to internships and jobs.

3. Allow yourself time to unwind and have some down time before starting your MBA.  Financial reality may dictate that you work until the last minute, but if you can, give yourself time to vacation, travel, or relax.

4. Plan living logistics at business school before business school starts. Set up your apartment, open a bank account, figure out where the supermarket, post office, dry cleaners, and hairdresser are.

Follow these tips to hit the ground running when classes actually start.

Career Strategy for MBA Applicants WebinarAccepted: The Premier Admissions Cosultancy

Related Resources:

CommonBond’s Story: A Revolution in Student Loans
• How to Find the Ideal Internship
• The MBA Family: A Roundup and Overview

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So, Your GMAT Score Isn’t Quite A 780… http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/16/so-your-gmat-score-isnt-quite-780/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/16/so-your-gmat-score-isnt-quite-780/#respond Thu, 16 Apr 2015 19:45:51 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29996 What?! You have a low GMAT/GPA score and still haven’t signed up for the Get Accepted to Top B-Schools with Low Stats webinar? Consider this post your personal reminder to reserve an hour of your time and attend THE webinar that will help you overcome your less-than-desirable GPA or GMAT score and apply successfully to […]

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What?! You have a low GMAT/GPA score and still haven’t signed up for the Get Accepted to Top B-Schools with Low Stats webinar? Consider this post your personal reminder to reserve an hour of your time and attend THE webinar that will help you overcome your less-than-desirable GPA or GMAT score and apply successfully to your top choice MBA programs!

Register for the webinar!The Details:

Date: Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Time: 10:00 AM PT/1:00 PM ET

Registration link: Get Accepted to Top B-Schools with Low Stats (Registration is free, but required.)

Click here to reserve your spot for the webinar!
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Improve Your MCAT Score for Medical School Acceptance http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/16/improve-your-mcat-score-for-medical-school-acceptance-2/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/16/improve-your-mcat-score-for-medical-school-acceptance-2/#respond Thu, 16 Apr 2015 15:39:54 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29630 In the next section of our Medical School Reapplicant Advice: 6 Tips for Success, we’ll move from increasing your GPA to improving your MCAT score. Fortunately, it’s easier to tackle a poor MCAT score than a poor GPA. While you should not retake the exam too many times (don’t bother retaking if you’ve scored above a 32), a better-prepared […]

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Read more reapplying to medical tips

There is no magic formula for MCAT success.

In the next section of our Medical School Reapplicant Advice: 6 Tips for Success, we’ll move from increasing your GPA to improving your MCAT score.

Fortunately, it’s easier to tackle a poor MCAT score than a poor GPA. While you should not retake the exam too many times (don’t bother retaking if you’ve scored above a 32), a better-prepared second or possibly third attempt has always been a sound strategy. While it still is, as yet there is little known about the 2015 MCAT and there is a risk that your score could decrease. As more resources become available, the following information will be more helpful.

Many people find that studying independently or with a group of friends works well. Reviewing your old class notes and introductory tests provides the most solid basis for your test preparation. Scrutinizing old tests remains one of the best ways to identify the areas where you’re weak. And, as Baylor College of Medicine recommends, practice the test questions “until they come out of your ears.”

There are numerous resources available for self-study. The AAMC should be both your first and last stop. Focusing on their practice tests, both at the start of your study and again in the weeks leading up to the exam, can put you in the right frame of mind. Alongside the AAMC guides, the Princeton Review comes highly recommended for studying the physical section, while Examkrackers tops the list for both the verbal reasoning and biological sections. For some people, professional test prep services can give their MCAT preparation a jump start. Taking an MCAT prep class doesn’t guarantee you’ll get a good score – you get out of them what you put in – but they can help by providing structure and keeping test-takers focused and on track. They can also really force you to tackle head-on those areas you’d rather avoid.

Whichever method you prefer, your goals in preparing for the MCAT should be to:

1. Understand why you got each wrong answer. If you understand the material, you may be having issues with the format of the question, and this is something you need to straighten out before test day.

2. Be able to choose right answers even when you don’t know the material. It’s unlikely that you can answer every question, but a keen test taker can read clues in the question that help narrow down the possible answers.

3. Finish every question in your timed practice tests with at least five minutes to spare.

And it’s a good idea not only to focus on what you’re studying but how you’re studying. Your university most likely has a wealth of information on study habits, like these helpful handouts from Princeton University, while sites like Lifehacker collect information about topics such as managing stress and establishing routines. Better time management and more effective study habits will help you not just on this exam but in your later studies.

If you identified test anxiety as one of your obstacles, then you have to address this before tackling the MCAT a second (or third) time. Exercise, breathing techniques and yoga can help alleviate stress for some people; other test-takers might benefit from addressing learning disorders and engaging in psychotherapy, as the Mayo Clinic suggests. College counseling centers, like the University of Washington’s, even offer biofeedback training as an option to combat test anxiety. And putting the books away and relaxing the day before seems to be a pretty standard ingredient for success. But only you can know what works best for you.

So how will you know when you’re ready to retake the MCAT? Again, this is a question that only you can answer, based on your performance in practice tests and your confidence levels. But try to sign up for an early exam so you can get your application to AMCAS in June. By counting backwards from your test date, you’ll be able to determine how much time you have to study, and what arrangements you’ll need to make to be as prepared as you possibly can be. (Some people consider studying for the MCAT a full-time job. This is great if it helps you get in the mindset of intense study, but try to maintain a good work-life balance or you’ll be miserable. If you manage your time well, you’ll also be able to eat healthy meals, exercise, pursue some semblance of a social life, and even sleep!)

In the end, there is no magic formula that guarantees MCAT success. Nonetheless, knowing yourself, including your study habits and needs, will go a long way toward building your confidence.

Next we’ll look at ways your experiences section can be strengthened. If you’d like to know more about formulating a study schedule and sticking to it, our Accepted.com editors would be happy to help

Download Medical School Reapplicant Tips for Succcess

Cydney Foote By , Accepted consultant and author of Write Your Way to Medical School, who has helped future physicians craft winning applications since 2001.

Related Resources:

How to Get Into Medical School with Low Stats
• Advice from A Med School Admissions Director
Presenting yourself to Medical Schools: Your Primary Application

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Exploring Yale’s Top-Rated Physician Assistant Program http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/15/yales-pa-program-and-its-new-online-option/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/15/yales-pa-program-and-its-new-online-option/#respond Wed, 15 Apr 2015 19:15:29 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=30090 One of the fastest growing fields in the country is that of physician assistants. The need for PAs is growing by a torrid 38%. Check out the recording of our interview with Jim van Rhee, Director of Yale University’s Physician Assistant Program, to learn about Yale’s PA program. 00:01:10 – Introducing Jim van Rhee. 00:02:41 […]

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Click here to listen to the recording.One of the fastest growing fields in the country is that of physician assistants. The need for PAs is growing by a torrid 38%.

Check out the recording of our interview with Jim van Rhee, Director of Yale University’s Physician Assistant Program, to learn about Yale’s PA program.

00:01:10 – Introducing Jim van Rhee.

00:02:41 – The million dollar question: What made Jim attend PA school?

00:04:11 – An overview of the Yale PA program.

00:06:03 – What do PAs actually do?

00:07:22 – There is a 3% acceptance rate at the Yale PA program. How do you get in?

00:08:45 – About the new online (blended) program Yale hopes to launch.

00:14:30 – Why Yale sees the need for an online program.

00:16:25 – Comparing the traditional and blended programs: Full Time vs PT, admissions requirements, and class size.

00:19:42 – The importance of research for PAs.

00:22:38 – The best thing for future PA applicants to do right now.

00:26:58  – A last piece of advice for a college student hoping to become a PA.

Click here to listen to the show!

Shortly after this podcast was recorded, it was revealed that the online PA program did not receive the accreditation it was seeking since the accrediting body viewed the new program not as a class extension, but as an entirely new program. Yale will now need to apply for both accreditation for a new program as well as state licensing.  For more details, please see:

Yale Medical School’s Request to Expand Campus Program Online Is Denied
Online PA Program Proposal Rejected

*Theme music is courtesy of podcastthemes.com

Related Links:

Yale Physician Assistant Program
Yale PA Online

Related  Shows:

A Window into the World and Life of Medical Scribes
Where MedEd & Leadership Meet: An Inside Look at AMSA
Medical School Admissions 2015-2016: A Dean’s Perspective

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MBA Admissions A-Z: U is for Undergrad Grades http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/15/mba-admissions-a-z-u-is-for-undergrad-grades-3/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/15/mba-admissions-a-z-u-is-for-undergrad-grades-3/#respond Wed, 15 Apr 2015 18:15:39 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=30105 3 Steps for Handling a Low Undergraduate GPA Grades show whether you previously performed well in an academic setting. If your college GPA is low, then you need to provide evidence that even though you may have faltered back then, now you’ve got you’re A-game and are capable of academic excellence. But how? The following […]

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U_is_for_undergrad_grades3 Steps for Handling a Low Undergraduate GPA

Grades show whether you previously performed well in an academic setting. If your college GPA is low, then you need to provide evidence that even though you may have faltered back then, now you’ve got you’re A-game and are capable of academic excellence.

But how?

The following 3 steps will help you overcome a low GPA and present a solid case to the admissions board that you mean academic business:

1.  Identify.

First, identify the cause of your low GPA.

Is it low because you partied a little too hard your first two semesters, but then buckled down after that and worked to pull up your low freshman GPA? Or did you start out high and then get really lazy and bored with school your senior year and let things spiral out of control? Or is it possible that your low GPA is truly an indication that your workload was too challenging and that you’re not school material? Or perhaps you were dealing with a serious illness or family problems? Or maybe back then you just weren’t motivated to succeed?

Once you understand why you have a less-than-impressive GPA, you’ll have an easier time figuring out what to do next (Step 2) and how to explain the situation (Step 3).

2.  Ameliorate.

Once you determine that you are motivated this time around and are capable and competent academically, then it’s time to take action to improve your profile. (And if after deep introspection you decide that school is just not for you, then consider yourself lucky that you figured that out now and not after you’ve paid $100,000+ on even more schooling.)

Obviously, you can’t go back and raise your undergraduate GPA, but there are steps you can take NOW to show the adcom that your undergrad GPA doesn’t define your current academic abilities:

• Take a few business-related, college-level courses and earn A’s in them.

• Ace the GMAT.

3.  Explain.

There are three places in your MBA application where you may want to address a low GPA: the optional essay, the required portions of the application, and your letters of recommendation.

In a non-whiny, non-defensive tone, you can clearly and straightforwardly explain why your GPA is lower than it should be in the optional essay. Perhaps there was a death in the family one semester or maybe you had emergency surgery that left you on bed rest for three weeks mid-semester. Or maybe you just didn’t realize the importance of grades until halfway through your sophomore year and by then your GPA had taken a serious hit. Or maybe you worked thirty hours a week to support yourself. Let the reader know the context of your grades. Write honestly and write well.

In other parts of the application, show the skills that your transcript hides without drawing attention to the grades. For example, if you did not do well in Econ 101 or college math classes, but now are do some really heavy lifting in terms of financial modeling, then either in your resume or in a required essay, write about a quantitative challenge that you handled with elan.

Regarding letters of recommendation – getting a supervisor to vouch for your maturity and abilities is probably one of the best things you can do to bolster your case. Again, if you had poor grades in classes requiring a lot of writing, ask your boss if she can comment positively on your communications skills. If you had poor quant grades, ask if she can praise your quantitative analysis of a complex project. In either case, your boss doesn’t have to reference the negative you are trying to overcome – just the positives you want to bring out.

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

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Related Resources:

• MBA Admissions Tip: Dealing with a Low GPA
• How to Handle a Low GMAT Quant Score
• How to Handle a Low GMAT Verbal Score

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What Are My Chances? Research Analyst Interested in Luxury Corporate Strategy http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/15/what-are-my-chances-research-analyst-interested-in-luxury-corporate-strategy/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/15/what-are-my-chances-research-analyst-interested-in-luxury-corporate-strategy/#respond Wed, 15 Apr 2015 18:03:27 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=30067 This blog post is part of a series of MBA profile evaluations called “What are My Chances?”  by Michelle Stockman. For this series Michelle, who started consulting for Accepted in 2007 and worked previously in the Columbia Business School admissions office, provides selected applicants with school recommendations as well as an assessment of their strengths […]

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This blog post is part of a series of MBA profile evaluations called “What are My Chances?”  by Michelle Stockman. For this series Michelle, who started consulting for Accepted in 2007 and worked previously in the Columbia Business School admissions office, provides selected applicants with school recommendations as well as an assessment of their strengths and weaknesses.

If you would like Michelle to evaluate your profile at no charge and as part of this series, please provide the  information requested at http://reports.accepted.com/what_are_my_chances.

PROFILE: Akanksha, Indian research analyst at consulting firm seeks future in luxury corporate strategy.

Download Best MBA Programs: A Guide to Selecting the Right One

It’s not enough to be a leader in an extracurricular role.

– PROFESSIONAL BACKGROUND: 20-something Indian female who graduated in 2012 from University of Delhi with a business finance degree. Describes herself as a “quasi-consultant” currently working at a professional services consulting firm in Delhi for a US-based client.

Why do you describe yourself as a “quasi-consultant?”  Either own the full term “consultant”, or drop it. It makes you sound young and whimsical.

From what I can gather, you’re a smart, eager businesswoman. That shows both in the awards you’ve racked up at work and from your go-getter attitude as an entrepreneur.

You’re in a tricky situation as a research analyst, however, as it’s sometimes difficult to describe leadership experiences, and quantify how much impact your work has had.

First of all, leadership. You are a leader in an extracurricular role where you work. But what about the money-making part? Have you ever stepped up to take the place of a manager on a project? Did you ever disagree with a superior on the direction of a project and have to win him/her over as a stakeholder? In your essays, you want to show how you punched above your weight as an effective, yet diplomatic leader on actual client work.  Also, be sure to highlight if you have received any promotions in title in the two years you’ve been at the consulting firm.

Next, your impact. Can you check back with your clients to see if any of your research has been acted upon? Also, in your recommendations, your recommenders need to comment on how you stood out above and beyond your peers in terms of smarts and leadership. You can’t write these letters for them–but there’s no harm in giving them a one-page achievement summary as a reminder of why you’ve won all those awards.

– GOALS: Move into a corporate strategy role at a large CPG or luxury firm.

With your work trajectory and your sideline in jewelry, this appears to be a solid goal. You need to draw a closer connection to any consulting work you have done on consumer products to show experience. Also, try to spruce up the website for your jewelry sales. Right now it doesn’t look very luxury. The pieces are attractive (a bit difficult to see because the photos are so dark), but more of a casual style instead of high end. If you’re going to highlight that as evidence of a trajectory toward the luxury market–it’s not quite there yet.  

– GMAT: Not taken yet. Aiming for 700-720.

Aim for a 720 or above. That will give you more options.

– GPA: 71%. First class honors.

This is a solid, respectable GPA. No worries here.

– EXTRACURRICULAR: Heads the ‘fun’ employee engagement club at her firm, comprising a team of >10 individuals. In October 2012, undertook a 5 day, 55 km trek in Northern India. Also holds a junior diploma in Hindustani Classical Music.

These are great, but nothing truly special or stand out. However, depending on the schools you end up choosing, you could talk about the discipline you developed in training in Hindustani music, and how that drive has bled into other aspects of achievement in your life.

– EXTRAS: Runs a bespoke jewelry business with mother, serving clients in India and overseas.

See above, under goals.

– SCHOOLS:

Because you haven’t taken the GMAT yet, I will only recommend schools that you should research: Wharton, Kellogg, NYU, Tuck, Ross, HEC, Emory.

Overall I find your profile intriguing, and I’d send you on for a second read if you’ve got convincing stories of leadership and ingenuity in your essays.

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Michelle Stockman Michelle Stockman is a professional journalist, former Columbia Business School admissions insider, and experienced MBA admissions consultant.

 

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• How to Show the Adcom that You are a Leader
• What are My Chances? Latina Software Developer Moving to Marketing

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Leaning In While Pursuing Your MBA: The MBA Mama Story http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/14/interview-with-two-on-the-way-to-business-school/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/14/interview-with-two-on-the-way-to-business-school/#respond Tue, 14 Apr 2015 16:37:38 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=30048 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 for a chat with Nicole Ponton and Divinity Matovu… Accepted: We’d like to get to know you! Where are you from? Where and what did you study as an undergrad? […]

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Read more MBA applicant interviews

Nicole Ponton and Divinity Matovu

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 for a chat with Nicole Ponton and Divinity Matovu…

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 favorite non-school book?

Nicole Ponton: Born and raised in Pasadena, CA. I studied International Relations and Religion at the University of Southern California, Class of 2010. If I had to pick one book, it would be 100 Years of Solitude.

Divinity Matovu: I’m from a small town in Wisconsin, and I’m a first-generation college graduate. I studied Political Science at the University of Southern California, Class of 2008. I am a fiery entrepreneur and independent thinker who will begin my MBA at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business in Fall 2015 with a focus on finance and entrepreneurship. I’ve launched four start-ups: a fashion company in Los Angeles, a youth development non-profit in Uganda, a consulting firm with clients in Africa and the US, and now my latest venture, MBA Mama. I am a mother to two wonderful children, Nyah and Shafiq. I’ve lived and worked in Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania and pride myself on being a global citizen and an advocate for women. I am passionate about start-ups, technology, women’s empowerment and African affairs. Interestingly enough, I did not know Nicole during undergrad. We are both 2015 Social Innovation Fellows with StartingBloc. We had instant chemistry when we met in February at SB’s Los Angeles Institute. My favorite non-school book is “The Alchemist.” I’ve read it at least once a year since 2009.

Accepted: Can you tell us a bit about your MBA application process? How did your experience inspire you to develop your new venture, MBAMama.com? And where do you see MBAMama going in the future?

NP: I actually went through the application process twice, back to back, with only the support of friends. It has been a character building experience, to say the least, and when I heard about Divinity’s concept, I knew that I had to help other women going through that process. I know that this platform has amazing potential and it has received an excellent response and support from people of all walks of life. I envision MBA Mama growing into a powerful network, becoming the go-to website for women balancing family planning and career advancement, and becoming the host of an exceptional annual conference.

DM: My MBA application process began Fall 2013 when I applied, and was admitted, to Forte Foundation’s MBA Launch Program and Management Leadership for Tomorrow’s (MLT) MBA Prep Program. Completing both programs in 2014 kept me focused, helped me be strategic, and held me accountable for advancing towards my goal of matriculating to a top-tier MBA program in 2015. I struggled for months with the GMAT, taking the exam 3 times before I received a score I felt confident with. After the recommendation of my amazingly supportive MLT coach, Kendra Crook, I took supplemental courses in Statistics and Calculus to boost my quantitative profile.

While researching MBA programs, I often had to dig deep within school websites to find common-sense information applicable to me as a pre-MBA mama. In my experience, the images many schools project of “students with families” are predominantly male students whose wives are stay-at-home mothers. I know taking care of children is a full-time job, so I certainly respect stay-at-home mothers; however, it was frustrating to not see images of women MBAs who had children. At some moments, I doubted whether my goals were attainable. I reached out to some programs specifically requesting to be put in contact with an MBA mom who could talk to me about childcare options in the area, and I’d be connected with a woman whose retired parents lived in the same city and cared for the child full-time– thereby eliminating childcare concerns. While we certainly both had children, our situations and needs were completely different.

I had my “aha moment” for MBA Mama after receiving a text message from Derek, one of my MLT MBA Prep colleagues. Derek texted me saying he admired my perseverance, and my ability to balance Forte, MLT, GMAT prep, running my own business and being a single mother. I was extremely touched by Derek’s text. As an entrepreneur, I immediately started to think about how I could impact more people like I’d impacted Derek. The concept for MBA Mama was born within 1 week of Derek’s text.

MBA Mama is a dynamic blog featuring exclusive, inspirational content that provides Millennial Mamas with tools and resources to pursue a graduate business degree. As Nicole mentioned, the goal for MBA Mama is to evolve as the premier website for young women balancing family planning and career advancement. While pitching this idea over the past few months, I’ve received overwhelming support from Millennial women – like Nicole – who do not have children yet. Nonetheless, the message that an MBA, career advancement and children are not mutually exclusive resonates with them.

Accepted:  How have you been able to integrate your commitment to social justice into your career?

NP: In addition to running Communications for MBA Mama, I currently work full time for a social justice nonprofit called Life In Abundance, International. We are an African-founded and African-led organization that carries out sustainable community development in urban and rural impoverished areas, empowering the most vulnerable families to become self-sustaining and help others to do the same. It has been an incredible experience to work for this organization and witness the transformation that takes place throughout the 10 countries we work with, and I am fortunate that social justice is a part of my day-to-day life. I also continue to give back to programs in my hometown that promote education initiatives and gang prevention which I volunteered with during my time in California.

DM: As a social entrepreneur, I am always thinking about social impact within the context of my career. Ultimately, I plan to monetize MBA Mama and build equity in this brand. It is a win-win scenario if I can build a revenue model that works, and simultaneously inspire women by sharing stories of MBA mamas, and giving them actionable steps they can take to pursue their MBAs and career goals relentlessly while balancing family commitments. I want to see women’s enrollment in business school on par with men’s enrollment within the next 5-10 years. Admissions officers are missing out big time if they are not targeting, recruiting, and supporting talented women with children to their MBA programs.

Accepted: Can you talk about your experience so far with the Forte Foundation? Would you recommend that other women interested in business check them out?

DM: I recommend Forte Foundation’s MBA Launch Program to any woman who is interested in the MBA. Last Fall, I published a full blog post about my experience on Forte’s Business360 blog titled: ROI on MBA Launch Program Has Had Exponential Benefits.

NP: Though I am not a Forte Fellow (yet) like Divinity, the Forte Foundation has provided me with access to excellent resources and advice during my application process and transition preparation. I highly recommend that other women interested in business check out the site and everything they have to offer.

Accepted: Is there anything else you think we should know about you and your work?

DM: MBA Mama’s blog officially launches April 15, 2015. We’d love Accepted’s network to visit the site, www.mbamama.com – engage with us on social media @MBAMamaDotCom and sign up for our newsletter. We’d also love for your readers to support our ThunderClap campaign which runs through April 15:  Anyone interested in learning more about MBA Mama can contact me at divinity@mbamama.com.

Thank you Divinity and Nicole for sharing your story with us – we wish you loads of success!

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• Forte Helps Women in Business Thrive: Interview with Elissa Sangster

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How Law School And Law Degrees Are Changing [Infographic] http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/13/how-law-school-and-law-degrees-are-changing-infographic/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/13/how-law-school-and-law-degrees-are-changing-infographic/#respond Mon, 13 Apr 2015 16:33:01 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29853 Thanks to WorldWideLearn for this infographic.   Related Resources: • Law School Admissions 101 • How I Wrote a Personal Statement that Got Me Into Harvard Law • Beware of High-Cost, Low-Value Law Degrees Tags: infographic, Law School Admissions, law school admissions

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Click here for Law School Admissions 101

Thanks to WorldWideLearn for this infographic.

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Which B-School Admission Offer Should I Accept? http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/13/which-b-school-admission-offer-should-i-accept/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/13/which-b-school-admission-offer-should-i-accept/#respond Mon, 13 Apr 2015 16:07:36 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29357 You’ve just received the best news ever: Not only have you been accepted to b-school, but you’ve received offers of admission from more than one program. Congratulations! Now you have the delightful dilemma of choosing among suitors. Here are factors to consider when deciding among multiple acceptances: Factor #1: Which institution best supports your future […]

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Click here for career strategy tips.

Good luck with your delightful dilemma!

You’ve just received the best news ever: Not only have you been accepted to b-school, but you’ve received offers of admission from more than one program. Congratulations! Now you have the delightful dilemma of choosing among suitors. Here are factors to consider when deciding among multiple acceptances:

Factor #1: Which institution best supports your future goals and most likely career path? 

This criterion is paramount when you have clear, well-defined goals, for instance, “I want to run an IT consultancy serving financial services firms.” If financial aid is an issue, calculate whether the full tuition program will increase your earning power by more than the amount of the scholarship or whether your preference for the more expensive school is worth the difference in cost.

Factor #2: Which educational approach do you prefer?

Look at methodology, curriculum, and flexibility. For applicants with more general goals, this criterion plays a more significant role.

Factor #3: Where would you rather live for X years? 

Do you want to live in a big city or small college town? What region do you want to live in? Do you prefer a big university or a small college? Urban or rural? Religious or secular? Liberal or conservative?

Enjoy your great options and use these criteria to guide you as you make your decision.

If you would like guidance from any of our experienced, dedicated consultants, please browse our services and contact us for more information.

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Selling Yourself Short? http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/12/selling-yourself-short/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/12/selling-yourself-short/#respond Sun, 12 Apr 2015 16:05:45 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29932 “I founded a small candy company.”  I could see in the faces of my fellow admissions committee members that they were not that impressed with the candidate; none of them had ever heard of “Del Sol Candy,”* and Roberto’s modest description did not make it sound all that impressive an accomplishment. Many times while interviewing […]

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Get advice for writing exemplary personal statements.

Don’t sell yourself short!

“I founded a small candy company.”  I could see in the faces of my fellow admissions committee members that they were not that impressed with the candidate; none of them had ever heard of “Del Sol Candy,”* and Roberto’s modest description did not make it sound all that impressive an accomplishment.

Many times while interviewing international MBA candidates, I have found that some of them sell themselves short, particularly with regards to their work experience. Whether it is because of culture or family upbringing, there is a certain type of candidate who finds it hard to present his or her own professional accomplishments in the best light.

This contrasts dramatically with what is expected from MBA applicants; committee members expect candidates to present their best case and promote their accomplishments. This mismatch between the candidate’s culture and the committee’s expectations can sometimes harm the candidate’s chances of admission. A second layer of complexity also arises for some international students: if an American applicant mentions that he or she is a regional manager at Hershey’s, for example, the adcom would have at least an idea of the size of the operation, the level of responsibility, and the selectiveness of the company. If, on the other hand, you come from abroad and your company is not well known in the U.S., the adcom may have a harder time evaluating your work experience.

Just by chance, I had been to Roberto’s home city the previous year on a recruitment trip, and I happened to know that the company he had started from scratch was not only the biggest candy maker in the country, but that it exported millions of dollars’ worth of goods to international markets as far away as the Middle East. During the interview I asked him a couple of probing questions about it, and once he started talking about specifics (sales figures, market share, etc.) he became more comfortable. More importantly, the committee was able to assess the magnitude of his accomplishments.

If you, like Roberto, feel hesitant to promote your achievements for fear of sounding boastful, you need to be aware of those emotions and make a determined effort to overcome that tendency. It is up to you, the candidate, to provide the school with enough information to evaluate your accomplishments.

A good way to overcome any qualms regarding self-promotion is to be ready to provide the adcom with hard data that will document what you have done. If at all possible, do research and be prepared to provide them with a benchmark, a point of comparison with an American company, or at least some details of the level of the operation, but most importantly, the size of your responsibilities. By preparing yourself with facts, you will dramatically improve your chances of admission and, later on, your employability prospects for internship and beyond.

Learn how to use sample essays to create an exemplary essay of your own!

Esmeralda CardenalBy Esmeralda Cardenal, previously the Associate Director of Admissions at Yale SOM, Director of MBA Admissions at MSU Broad, and consultant at Cardiff Business School in the UK. She is happy to help you showcase your achievements in your MBA application.

Related Resources:

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• 4 Application Strategy Tips: Stand Out AND Fit In
• 4 Ways to Show How You’ll Contribute in the Future

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First HEC Paris Case Study Competition http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/12/first-hec-paris-case-study-competition/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/12/first-hec-paris-case-study-competition/#respond Sun, 12 Apr 2015 14:46:25 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=30040 HEC Paris held its inaugural student-organized international case study competition the weekend of April 10-11, which involved masters students from 33 top universities in a series of business-focused challenges. The HEC Business Game (HBG) was developed by a team of 20 HEC students in partnership with top companies, including Lufthansa, Crédit Agricole Corporate & Investment […]

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HEC ParisHEC Paris held its inaugural student-organized international case study competition the weekend of April 10-11, which involved masters students from 33 top universities in a series of business-focused challenges.

The HEC Business Game (HBG) was developed by a team of 20 HEC students in partnership with top companies, including Lufthansa, Crédit Agricole Corporate & Investment Bank, Crédit Agricole S.A, and Gameloft.

Participating students were selected via online test and competed in five challenges, set by the companies, in fields such as innovation, corporate evolution and strategy. Prizes included tuition fees for HEC’s summer school, as well as the opportunity to be invited to visit the partner company’s offices. The project also provided opportunities for students to network with their peers, meet with top firms and gain hands-on experience of real, practical case studies.

The HBG was organized as part of the Alliance of European Business Games (AEBG), a European network composed of five business schools (Solvay School of Economics, St Gallen, Durham University, Nova University and HEC Paris) dedicated to fostering the creation of new business games across Europe.

More information about the competition can be found at www.hecbusinessgame.com, via Facebook or via Twitter.

Click here for financial aid and health insurance for the international student

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Tips for Applying to European B-Schools
• HEC Paris 2015 MBA Essay Tips

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Insights Of An International Student At MIT Sloan http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/09/insights-of-an-international-student-at-mit-sloan/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/09/insights-of-an-international-student-at-mit-sloan/#respond Thu, 09 Apr 2015 17:09:20 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29969 This interview is the latest in an Accepted.com blog series featuring interviews with current MBA students, offering readers a behind-the-scenes look at top MBA programs. And now for a chat with Christian Marek who is in his final year at MIT Sloan. Accepted: We’d like to get to know you! Where are you from? Where and what did you […]

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Read more MBA student interviewsThis interview is the latest in an Accepted.com blog series featuring interviews with current MBA students, offering readers a behind-the-scenes look at top MBA programs. And now for a chat with Christian Marek who is in his final year at MIT Sloan.

Accepted: We’d like to get to know you! Where are you from? Where and what did you study as an undergrad? Do you hold any other degrees?

Christian: Originally I’m from the scenic Vienna in Austria. There I completed Bachelor’s in Software Engineering and a Master’s in Information Systems Management. Because I wanted to immerse myself even further in the tech industry, I decided to pursue an MBA.

Accepted: Where are you in business school? What year?

Christian: I’m currently a second-year MBA student at MIT Sloan and will be graduating June 2015.

Accepted: Why did you choose MIT Sloan? How is it the best program for you? Which other MBA programs had you considered?

Christian: When I chose my MBA program, the primary factors I considered were quality of the school, entrepreneurial ecosystem of the university, school affinity for technology (and data), class size, and location. This lead me to consider MIT Sloan, Berkeley Haas and UCLA Anderson. All programs were almost equally amazing. However, once I saw the MIT campus I knew this was the place to be for me. The geekiness and culture was impossible to match. Coming from an engineering background this is where I wanted to be.

Accepted: Can you share some advice to incoming first year students, to help make their adjustment to b-school easier? What do you wish you would’ve known when you were just starting out?

Christian: Adjusting to b-school is a great experience but it’s definitely challenging – there are so many variables. Being an international student adds an additional challenge as it takes some time to get used to local communication style and culture. Here are a few things that make the adjustment easier:

Keep reaching out after your acceptance: The MBA years are among the best in your life. Having a rough sense of what you want to get out of the MBA is really helpful. Obviously as an incoming student you do your research online. Additionally, I recommend reaching out to a variety of current MBAs at your school that are doing what you are looking to do. This should be even easier after acceptance. For example if you’re interested in entrepreneurship try to talk to a club VP over the phone. They can tell you if the club a good choice for your, help develop your interest further and intro you the others who might have similar interests.

•  Attend post-admission events: I find that the admission events (weekends, seminars, etc.) I attended really helped me in making my decision. You get to know your potential future classmates. Doing so, let’s you figure out if you’re kind of on the same wavelength and even find roommates. Furthermore the schools will showcase what the programs have too offer in even greater detail.

•  MBA communication classes: These classes are amazingly helpful, especially for international students. As I said communication in the U.S. can seem very different. The communication classes at Sloan taught me a lot about American communication standards in business personal interactions.

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

Christian: I’m a co-president of the European Business Club at MIT Sloan and I really enjoy the experience. However, I think club involvement is a personal choice. I know classmates who are members in up to eight clubs and I know classmates who are in zero clubs. Some classmates are VPs and presidents, others just aren’t. Personally, I think clubs can offer a lot of value in terms of making friends, finding classmates with common interests and taking on leadership opportunities. Just like everything in life it helps aligning your decision on the extent of your club involvement to what you want to accomplish. If you want to be an entrepreneur, joining the Entrepreneurship club makes sense. If you want to do something for the overall community, join a culture club. See if you like it and then you can typically still decide whether or not to go for a VP position.

Accepted: Can you tell us about your internship at Google last summer? What role did Sloan play in helping you secure that position? 

Christian: My internship at Google last summer was amazing. The internship program is run by an amazing team at Google that makes the experience at Google unique. On a weekly basis leaders in the organization gave us their inside scoop on leadership and the tech industry. Google offers a variety of MBA internship roles. Over the summer you take responsibility for executing your very own project. Sloan helped in a variety of ways. First, the internal network at Sloan is extremely helpful to learn about a company. As I was in the internship recruiting process, I reached out to former Googlers and former Google MBA interns at Sloan. They were extremely helpful in telling me about their experiences at Google. Second, the various clubs at Sloan help you with the internship process by doing resume reviews among other things. Coming from Europe, I found this particularly helpful because the U.S. job application process is very different. Third, the MIT Sloan Career Development office collaborates closely with Google to host coffee chats and recruiting events. In that way Sloan MBA students can connect directly to Googlers to learn more about the company and the internship.

Accepted: Looking back, what was the most challenging aspect of the MBA admissions process? How did you approach that challenge and overcome it?

Christian: For me personally the most challenging part getting connected to the schools. I was the first in my network to pursue an MBA. However, from reading online I got the sense that insights from current students are extremely valuable to the application. Even though the notion of writing cold emails was completely foreign to me, I researched Europeans (particularly Austrians) that were attending my target schools. I was surprised how quickly they responded. Even though arranging these chats and conversations was a lot of work, I do believe building those connections contributed to my admission offers. Talking to current students is irreplaceable and it helps you get a feel for the school.

Accepted: Do you have any other advice for our med school applicant readers, especially for international applicants?

Christian:

1. Connect to your target school: Your future school is probably a couple thousand kilometers away. Still connecting to current students is the best way to learn about your school.

2. Make a well-rounded application package: Show who you are personally and professionally. Ideally you’ll be able to tie this to together and paint your future to the reader. Also, use data points to quantify the impact you had. I think for internationals (or at least Europeans) – this is particularly unusual. Still, you need to get over it and do it.

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

You can follow Christian on Twitter and by checking out his blog Producteria.

Thank you Christian for sharing your story with us – we wish you loads of luck!

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IV With an Overrepresented Minority MIT Sloan Admit!

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Boost your GPA for Medical School Acceptance http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/09/boost-your-gpa-for-medical-school-acceptance/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/09/boost-your-gpa-for-medical-school-acceptance/#respond Thu, 09 Apr 2015 16:14:16 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29628 In our last Medical School Reapplicant Advice: 6 Tips for Success segment, we talked about how to best present yourself in your secondaries and interviews. Today we’ll move forward and discuss ways to boost your GPA, another important feature of your med school application profile. Feeling a bit fragile after these first sections? That’s to be expected – […]

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Watch the webinar Get Accepted to Medical School with Low Stats

A low GPA is probably the hardest area to improve. But it can be done.

In our last Medical School Reapplicant Advice: 6 Tips for Success segment, we talked about how to best present yourself in your secondaries and interviews. Today we’ll move forward and discuss ways to boost your GPA, another important feature of your med school application profile.

Feeling a bit fragile after these first sections? That’s to be expected – you’ve just gone undergone a pretty brutal review of your life. But the admissions committee is scrutinizing submissions with the same critical eye. Anticipating the problems so you can correct them is critical for success in your next attempt. And to start out, let’s look at how you can “fix” a poor GPA.

A low GPA is probably the hardest area to improve. This makes sense – it was years in the making, and can’t be undone without time. It can take about a year in advanced level science courses to bump a high 2.x GPA over 3.0. The lower your GPA, and the more classes you’ve taken, the longer it will take to reflect improvements in your academic record.

Fortunately, whether your GPA is just a bit off the mark or well below the competitive level, there are steps you can take.

Apply to an international medical school. Pursuing a medical degree abroad might be a viable option for you. The required GPA is often lower than the U.S. average and in some programs, the MCAT is not required. Courses are often taught by U.S. academic physicians with clinical rotations in the U.S. But if you do decide to attend an international medical school, realize that you will have to contend with many different challenges – from language barriers to culture shock – that could affect your studies.

Probably the biggest challenge for international medical graduates is securing a residency program after completing medical school. Only 50.9% of IMGs match to PGY1 programs, although the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates reports a consistent increase in this number over the past decade. I’ve worked with many successful IMGs over this same time period. What sets them apart is that they make up for any lack in their initial qualifications by working harder than the average medical student. They’re heavily involved in university activities, community healthcare initiatives, and international competitions. And significantly, they’re the ones who can express the advantages of their non-US medical education, including resourcefulness and the deep grounding in diagnoses that comes from doing without modern diagnostic equipment.

If you’re interested in an international program, do your research. Some Caribbean programs such as Ross UniversitySt. George’s University, and the American University of the Caribbean have consistently high placement rates. Israeli programs like Sackler and Ben-Gurion have partnerships with American programs; likewise, the University of Queensland has an attractive option for U.S. students. And Ireland’s Atlantic Bridge program, although quite competitive, is flexible in its approach to the GPAs of qualified American and Canadian students.

Apply to a DO program. If your application is competitive but you just didn’t make the cut, consider an osteopathic medical program. Because there are fewer applicants, you might have a better chance. Doctors of Osteopathic Medicine (DOs) focus on integrating the whole person into the healthcare process, which makes them especially strong in family practice, general internal medicine, and pediatrics. They are fully licensed physicians; they train in the same residency programs, take the same national board exams, and sit for the identical USMLE exams that the MD students do. Your chance of securing a residency might be less – in the 2014 residency match, 77.7% of DOs matched compared to 94.4% of US senior MDs  but the steady rise in DO matches suggests that any stigma against osteopathic physicians is changing.

The good news for borderline candidates is that DO schools have lower GPAs and MCAT requirements: The mean GPA for the 2014 entering class was 3.43, while the mean MCAT score was 26 (American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine). There are a number of programs worth exploring: West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine, Lincoln Memorial (Harrogate, TN), Nova Southeastern (Ft. Lauderdale), Touro (Vallejo, CA, Lake Erie (Erie, PA) and Western University (Pomona) all have strong programs that are less competitive. West Virginia, for instance, had the lowest reported average GPA (3.4) of all medical schools and an average MCAT score of 25. However, 55% of their graduates matched at their top residency program.

If you care more about being a doctor than the letters after your name, the DO route is definitely something to think about. However, getting into one of these programs is still going to require a strong GPA. So what can you do if your grades are lower?

Boost your GPA with post-baccalaureate classes. This is a popular route, especially for applicants who did well on the MCAT but need some help with their GPA. Retaking science classes can show you’ve mastered the material, but a better strategy is to take advanced classes and do well. If you have any doubt about your ability to get an A, then this is probably not the best path for you.

The quality of the institution offering the courses is important – community college won’t cut it. The best option is to see if your own alma mater will allow you to take additional courses; often this can be done at a reduced cost. If this doesn’t work out, Syracuse University has a very useful list of programs that offer post-bac courses in the sciences.

Improve your GPA with a science-based master’s program. This is another preferred route for would-be reapplicants, because it provides opportunities for more independent, self-directed research and demonstrates scientific acumen. It can be especially useful if you don’t have a research background already. Keep in mind though that you need to excel in your coursework and that you will have to finish the entire program; making below-average grades or dropping out before the program ends will do you more harm than good when you reapply to med school.

Master’s programs aren’t right for everybody – you might not want to commit to a multi-year program, or you might not be confident about your academic performance. Or you might not have the minimum GPA required for admittance in the first place. In that case:

Prove your potential in a special master’s program (SMPs). These programs, usually a year long, are often associated with a medical school. Students are immersed in a rigorous science-based curriculum almost identical to what they will face in medical school; often, they are even taking classes or being graded alongside first year med students. Success in these courses can show the admissions committee that you’re ready for medical training, which means that once you’re accepted into a SMP, the odds are very good you’ll eventually get into medical school.

Several programs cater to the lower end of the GPA/MCAT spectrum:

East Virginia Medical School M.S. in Biomedical Sciences: In the past five years, 90% of students have been accepted to med school after completion of EVMS’ program. The program runs for two semesters; the majority of courses are taught by faculty in the medical school. They require at least a 2.75 GPA and a 27 on your MCAT. They recommend applying by April, but applications are accepted through May.

• The Virginia Commonwealth University: Pre-Medical Basic Health Certificate Program: Graduates completing the program with a 3.5 GPA/28 MCAT are guaranteed an interview at VCU School of Medicine. They require a 3.0 GPA and 25 MCAT for admission, and applications are accepted until July 1st.

• Drexel’s Medical Science Program (MSP): The year-long MSP offers graduate-level biological science coursework, formal MCAT preparation, community outreach, and undergraduate review courses in chemistry, physics, and organic chemistry. A 3.0 GPA and either a 17 on the MCAT or 70th percentile on the GRE is required for entry to the program. Success in the program guarantees admission to Drexel’s Masters of Biological Science or the IMS course.

• Drexel’s Interdepartmental Medical Science (IMS) Program: Students spend 18 months in first-year medical school classes. Successful completion of their coursework enables them to continue on for another year to earn the MS of Medical Science. They are also guaranteed an interview at the Drexel School of Medicine. Applications are accepted year-round; a 3.0 GPA and an MCAT score of 27 or better is required.

Because SMPs have a reputation as a more certain path to medical school, they can be quite competitive. If you are still determined to be a physician but don’t have the GPA to get into a program, there’s one more route available.

GPA bump followed by an SMP. This method is a bit circuitous, but it does work. First, you need to get your GPA up – a year of good grades in upper-level science courses might be enough to get you up to a 3.0. At that point, you can apply to an SMP with strong links to a medical school. This will take you a minimum two years, which might not seem appealing at this point. However, look upon it as a way to build your confidence and shore up the science and study skills that will enable you to excel in medical school.

Boosting your GPA is likely to test your resolve to be a doctor. The next year(s) won’t be quick or easy, and you may question whether the effort is even worth it. You might find it’s not, and that is fine – there are many other worthwhile careers you can pursue. But if you keep your eyes on the prize, then in all likelihood you’ll be wearing a white coat someday.

Next, we’ll look at some of the other concrete steps you can take to improve your profile – and your chances of succeeding in medical school. Still have questions? Contact Accepted.com to see how our admissions consultants can help you.

Download Medical School Reapplicant Tips for Succcess

Cydney Foote By , Accepted consultant and author of Write Your Way to Medical School, who has helped future physicians craft winning applications since 2001.

Related Resources:

• How to Get into Medical School with Low Stats , a free webinar
• Applying to Medical School with Low Stats: What You Need to Know, a free guide
• Study Skills: How to Improve your GPA to Become a More Competitive Med School Applicant

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Advice From A Med School Admissions Director http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/08/advice-from-a-med-school-admissions-director/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/08/advice-from-a-med-school-admissions-director/#respond Wed, 08 Apr 2015 16:25:35 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=30028 One of the most popular Admissions Straight Talk episodes this year was our interview with med school admissions expert, Jennifer Welch. Jennifer Welch is Associate Dean of Admissions and Financial Aid at SUNY Upstate Medical University, and a med school admissions director and dean for over twenty years. For MCAT, application and interview advice from an med […]

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Jennifer Welch, SUNY UpstateOne of the most popular Admissions Straight Talk episodes this year was our interview with med school admissions expert, Jennifer Welch.

Jennifer Welch is Associate Dean of Admissions and Financial Aid at SUNY Upstate Medical University, and a med school admissions director and dean for over twenty years.

For MCAT, application and interview advice from an med school admissions insider, check out the recording now!

Click here to listen to the show!

*Theme music is courtesy of podcastthemes.com.

Related Links:

• SUNY Upstate Medical School Admissions
5-Step Guide to Successful Medical School Personal Statements
• Navigating the Med School Maze
 A Second Chance at Medical School: The A-Z of Applying to Postbac Programs
• Medical School Reapplicant Advice: 6 Tips for Success
Elliptical, Meet Med School: Interview with Andrea Tooley
• An Inside Look at the Medical School Journey

Leave a Review for Admissions Straight Talk:

Check Out Admissions Straight Talk in iTunes! Check Out Admissions Straight Talk in Stitcher!

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5 Pointers for a Stand-out Med School Personal Statement http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/08/5-pointers-for-a-stand-out-med-school-personal-statement/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/08/5-pointers-for-a-stand-out-med-school-personal-statement/#respond Wed, 08 Apr 2015 16:05:39 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29861 1. Honestly evaluate your strengths and weaknesses. In order for your personal statement to work for you, you need to think about what qualities you want to highlight. Do you need to emphasize your clinical work? Do you have outstanding research experience? Before you start writing, step back and catalog what the admissions committee will […]

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Stand out.

Make sure to show how you are interesting or different

1. Honestly evaluate your strengths and weaknesses. In order for your personal statement to work for you, you need to think about what qualities you want to highlight. Do you need to emphasize your clinical work? Do you have outstanding research experience? Before you start writing, step back and catalog what the admissions committee will see when they look at your application, and what you want to make sure they know that may not be immediately apparent.

2. Be specific. Most people applying to med school have the same basic profile. In order to stand out, you need to show how you are interesting or different. Give specific instances of how you have displayed the qualities like empathy and teamwork.

3. Give the admissions committee reasons to admit you. Emphasize the positive in your personal statement and try not to over-explain things like bad grades – it sounds like an excuse. Instead show that you were able to turn things around.

4. Get outside advice. It’s helpful to have someone else read your draft and give you honest feedback. Remember: personal statements require a lot of revising.

5. Be picky. Don’t submit a personal statement with grammatical errors or sloppy writing. It makes the reader think that you don’t care about medical school.

If you follow these tips, you will be able to write a med school personal statement that shines. For more, be sure to check out my webinar The 5-Step Guide to Successful Medical School Personal Statements.

Register for the 5-Step Guide to Successful Medical School Personal Statements

JessicaPishkoJessica Pishko graduated with a J.D. from Harvard Law School and received an M.F.A. from Columbia University. She spent two years guiding students through the medical school application process at Columbia’s PostBacc Program and teaches writing at all levels. 

Related Resources:

5 Fatal Flaws to Avoid in Your Med School Essay
Your MCAT Score and GPA
• 10 Tips for Med School Applicants

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Applying to Medical School as an Older Applicant http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/07/applying-to-medical-school-as-an-older-applicant/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/07/applying-to-medical-school-as-an-older-applicant/#respond Tue, 07 Apr 2015 16:21:21 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29866 The average age for medical students has been steadily increasing over the years for several reasons.  Medical schools cannot legally discriminate against applicants based on age. Often, applicants with more life experience make the best medical students as they are already established in their identity, maturity levels and career goals.  As nontraditional students with additional […]

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Advice for non-traditional medical school applicants

Is older better?

The average age for medical students has been steadily increasing over the years for several reasons.  Medical schools cannot legally discriminate against applicants based on age. Often, applicants with more life experience make the best medical students as they are already established in their identity, maturity levels and career goals.  As nontraditional students with additional life experience, they can also bring enormous insight into the field of medicine through the professional expertise and career development they gained before beginning their medical educations.

Older applicants have the advantage mentioned above; however, to be strong candidates for medical school, here are a few pitfalls to avoid:

Applying with coursework that is seven years or older: The coursework that is required to apply to medical school is changing dramatically.  You’ll want to double check the requirements at the schools where you are applying. If you have completed most of your prerequisites or science coursework more than seven years ago, enroll and take classes to demonstrate that you are ready to enter back into school.  Make sure you earn all A’s in your current coursework!

Using expired MCAT scores: There are some medical schools now that will only accept MCAT scores that are two years old or less.  If you haven’t taken the MCAT in recent years, you will need to retake it.  The majority of schools will accept scores that were taken three years ago or less.  A MCAT score expires after three years.  Choose a test prep program and register for a date!

Including weak activities: Many applicants don’t realize how much they have accomplished over the years.  For example, if you are a parent, you can include your leadership role as a cub scout/girl scout leader.  It’s easy to second guess the strength of your activities when you have been busy with family and your career.  Start by updating your resume/CV. List any awards or accomplishments.  Take the time to recall and research everything that you have done— list everything.  If you don’t have the space to include everything on your application, contact us at accepted.com so that we can advise you on how to make sure that all your activities are strategically placed and well represented.

Submitting old letters of recommendation: Selection committee members actually get angry when they see old letters of recommendation.  All of your letters of recommendation should be dated within the year that you are applying.  Anything over a year will actually hurt your application—may even lead to a rejection.  Take the time to meet up with letter writers and to give them a page of highlights with bullet points so that they will know what to update on your letter —make it as easy as possible for them to write you an outstanding letter.

You can even ask them, “Can you write me a strong letter of recommendation?”  If they seem uncertain, ask someone who knows you better or take the time to build those relationships. Allow your professors, supervisors and mentors a chance to get to know you on a deeper level by attending office hours, offering to help or requesting their advice on a frequent basis.

Reusing old essays: This strategy can also be dangerous because you may misrepresent yourself. Rewrite all of your essays.  If you applied years ago, chances are that you have changed dramatically.   It can also be refreshing to take a step back and look at your life in the context of reflective writing. What have you learned over the years?  How have your life goals changed?  Whom do you aspire to be?  You are always welcome to contact me or another Accepted consultant to help you create an outline for your personal statement as well as to support you through the process of creating drafts.  Writing about yourself is often the most challenging topic to cover.

With ten years of experience in medical school admissions, these are the most common mistakes that I’ve seen older premeds make.  At the medical school where I worked, every year we received an application from the same person.  He had applied every year for almost 15 years.  Nothing ever changed in his application.  It was so surprising to see his name, again and again.  If he’d taken the time to build a stronger application the second or third time that he applied, he may already have been a practicing doctor for all of those years.

Avoid easy mistakes and improve as much as you can in your application.  For more guidance, contact us.  I wish you all success!

Download Medical School Reapplicant Tips for Succcess Alicia McNease Nimonkar

is an Accepted.com advisor and editor specializing in healthcare admissions. Prior to joining Accepted, Alicia worked for five years as Student Advisor at UC Davis’ postbac program where she both evaluated applications and advised students applying successfully to med school and related programs.

Related Resources:

Ace The AMCAS Essay
The 5 Step Guide to Successful Medical School Personal Statements
Your MCAT Score and GPA

 

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Prepare for the TOEFL With This Infographic! http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/07/prepare-for-the-toefl-with-this-infographic/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/07/prepare-for-the-toefl-with-this-infographic/#respond Tue, 07 Apr 2015 15:04:02 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29808 There’s a lot to be tense about when it comes to the TOEFL speaking section–you’ll need to show your comfort level with the English language while speaking clearly into a microphone while surrounded by other test-takers who are also speaking into their microphones, and all of this done under a time crunch. That’s enough to […]

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Don't be afraid of the TOEFL.  Check out this infographic and get prepared!There’s a lot to be tense about when it comes to the TOEFL speaking section–you’ll need to show your comfort level with the English language while speaking clearly into a microphone while surrounded by other test-takers who are also speaking into their microphones, and all of this done under a time crunch. That’s enough to make even the most sophisticated test-taker break out in a sweat!

However, all is not lost. There is a lot you can do to practice and improve on this section of the test. And as a first step, you can study this handy TOEFL Speaking infographic that our friends at Magoosh TOEFL put together! It’s complete with info on the structure of the test, useful strategies to keep in mind, and helpful tips to make this section more manageable.

 So take a look at the infographic below and get confident about your TOEFL speaking skills!
Magoosh TOEFL Speaking Infographic
Learn how to use sample essays to create an exemplary essay of your own!
Accepted: The Premier Admissions Cosultancy
Related Resources:

• All Things Test Prep: The Test Prep Guru Speaks
• What is a Good TOEFL Score?
• Studying For GRE Verbal and the TOEFL at the Same Time

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What Are My Chances? Indian Start-Up Refugee Seeking Fresh Start in Consulting or Entrepreneurship http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/06/what-are-my-chances-indian-start-up-refugee-seeking-fresh-start-in-consulting-or-entrepreneurship/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/06/what-are-my-chances-indian-start-up-refugee-seeking-fresh-start-in-consulting-or-entrepreneurship/#respond Mon, 06 Apr 2015 16:48:05 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29898 This blog post is part of a series of MBA profile evaluations called “What are My Chances?”  by Michelle Stockman. Michelle, who started consulting for Accepted in 2007 and worked previously in the Columbia Business School admissions office, will provide selected applicants with school recommendation as well as an assessment of their strengths and weaknesses. […]

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This blog post is part of a series of MBA profile evaluations called “What are My Chances?”  by Michelle Stockman. Michelle, who started consulting for Accepted in 2007 and worked previously in the Columbia Business School admissions office, will provide selected applicants with school recommendation as well as an assessment of their strengths and weaknesses.

If you would like Michelle to evaluate your profile at no charge and as part of this series, please provide the  information requested at http://reports.accepted.com/what_are_my_chances.

PROFILE #10: Tushar, Indian start-up refugee seeking fresh start in consulting or entrepreneurship

Read more profiles here.

The most important thing for you to do right now is to get a job.

-BACKGROUND: 27-year-old Indian male who graduated in 2010 from Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University with an engineering degree. After eight-month search, hired as technical writer for engineering education firm. Switched to multimedia education start-up in 2012, but lost job after company hit cash crisis in 2014. Big impact was leading a social media marketing initiative before being made redundant. Currently looking to start own business.

You’ve been hit by some unfortunate turns in bad luck. You graduated into a still-recovering economy after the 2008 downturn, and got laid off by no fault of your own despite earning promotions along the way.

Right now is not the best time for you to apply to an MBA program. The story you want to tell is: You’re a comeback kid. But you’re currently at the low point of that narrative–the point when you started building toward a better future. Apply when you’re flying high off the rush of a career success. That’s what your competitors will be doing.

The most important thing for you to do right now is to get a job, both for your financial future and for your MBA chances. That can be with an established firm, or in a company that you start yourself as an entrepreneur.

If you eventually want to get into international-level consulting, see what you can do about getting onboard, at a leadership level, with a national or local consultancy dealing with education. Any interaction you have with the national government would be a plus.

You could take the entrepreneurship route, but that’s riskier. Really anyone can start a business. It’s about how successful you make that business, and what kind of wow factor you elicit in the ad comm for the innovation you bring through the product or service you’re bringing to market and how you made that company grow.

-GOALS: Short-term — Consulting. Long-term: Entrepreneurship

You’ve got your work cut out for you in terms of what you can tell consultants that you bring to the table. You do have some good education development skills. Figure out what you can offer on a technical level, then a policy level. Then do your research to find an MBA program that has a specific focus on the business of education.

-GMAT: 590

Ooh. This score is very low. You’ve got to improve this to have any chance, really, of going to a business school that will be worth your time.

-GPA: 72.5%

This is a solid, respectable GPA. No worries here.

-EXTRACURRICULAR: Volunteered for Times of India “Teach for India” initiative, teaching English to underprivileged kids. Also served as volunteer in 2012 Delhi half marathon and in the 2010 Commonweath Games. Just started a state-wide social initiative for women and girls’ safety.

You spoke to another consultant who said extracurricular activities are just “icing on the cake.” The ad comm first wants to see a solid track record of achievement and leadership in work activities.

In this, I would have to agree. You need to extracurriculars to show you are a well-rounded individual. But unless your activities are absolutely extraordinary, they can’t make up for a less than stellar work record.  

-EXTRAS: Studied “Technology Entrepreneurship Online Course” from Stanford University in September 2013.

This is a great MOOC, but I don’t see it having a major impact to make up for other weaknesses in your profile.

-SCHOOLS:

You mentioned Kellogg and Indian School of Business as your target schools. Kellogg has a great education focus that could set you up to enter the type of consultant practice you seek. At IIT you’re sure to get tons of job offers right down your alley. But right now your profile is not competitive enough for either.

Get a job, build your business, increase your GMAT. Orchestrate your comeback, then think about applying. 

Download our free special report: Best MBA Programs
Michelle Stockman Michelle Stockman is a professional journalist, former Columbia Business School admissions insider, and experienced MBA admissions consultant.

 

Related Resources:

Against the Odds: MBA Admissions for Indian Applicants
• Volunteering and Extracurriculars in Your MBA Application
• Indian MBA Applicants: Prepare for Your Job Hunt Now

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Interview with DO Student Dr. Diva: Do What Makes You Happy! http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/06/interview-with-do-student-dr-diva-do-what-makes-you-happy/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/06/interview-with-do-student-dr-diva-do-what-makes-you-happy/#respond Mon, 06 Apr 2015 16:25:27 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29893 This interview is the latest in an Accepted.com blog series featuring interviews with medical school applicants and students, offering readers a behind-the-scenes look at top medical schools and the med school application process. And now, introducing our anonymous blogger, Student Dr. Diva… Accepted: We’d like to get to know you! Where are you from? Where and what […]

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Click here for more medical student interviews!This interview is the latest in an Accepted.com blog series featuring interviews with medical school applicants and students, offering readers a behind-the-scenes look at top medical schools and the med school application process. And now, introducing our anonymous blogger, Student Dr. Diva…

Accepted: We’d like to get to know you! Where are you from? Where and what did you study as an undergrad? Can you share two interesting facts about yourself?

Student Dr. Diva: I’m from a small town in WV of about 2,000 residents. I was a biology major and psychology minor at a small Division II school in WV. Two interesting facts about me: I own a Great Dane and I’m the oldest of 5 girls.

Accepted: Where are you in med school? What year?

Student Dr. Diva: I’m a first year at the West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine.

Accepted: So, you’re a med student and a diva — how do these two things come together? Will you be a very dramatic doctor?

Student Dr. Diva: Honestly I’m just a girly medical student who is obsessed with the color pink and glitter. I guess you could say I’m somewhat dramatic.

Don’t be confused though, I’ve completed a Tough Mudder, ran track all 4 years of undergrad, and played volleyball and basketball as well as gymnastics from the time I was 3 years old until college. So, I’m kind of a tomboy too.

Accepted: Why did you choose an osteopathic program? How is your med school the best fit for you?

Student Dr. Diva: I chose an osteopathic program because of the osteopaths that I shadowed. Not only could they prescribe medications, give treatments, etc., but some could heal with their hands!

A patient came in with complications from a hip replacement. She saw multiple M.D.s and all they did was give her pain medications that she did not want. She finally saw a DO, and he did manipulations on her and she was healed just like that! I knew then that I wanted to impact and influence patients in such a way and more so than just writing prescriptions.

OMT has interested me from the beginning. I had no idea how a physician could impact a patient in so many ways just by manipulating the human body and how it’s all connected!

This medical school is the perfect fit for me because it is in my home state only three hours from home. It has state-of-the-art facilities, a top-notch anatomy lab with ventilation systems and over 50 cadavers, one of the best OPP labs in the country, and has a class size of about 214. I’m extremely happy with my decision to go here. I’ve met lifelong friends here, gotten to truly know myself here, and am about a quarter of the way to my final goal of becoming a physician!

Accepted: If you could change one thing about your program, what would it be?

Student Dr. Diva: I would change our curriculum to PASS/FAIL instead of the letter grades we get now. It’s extremely frustrating and annoying still getting letter grades when most medical schools are pass/fail because honestly in the end, that’s all that matters anyway. You’re not gonna remember that 90.15 you got in a course. It adds so much stress and if you ever get a C on an exam or what have you, it’s still passing, but you feel like a failure and sometimes it can be disheartening if you let it get to you.

Accepted: How many med schools had you applied to? Can you offer our readers some advice on how to choose the best programs to apply to, and then how to choose the best program to accept?

Student Dr. Diva: I only applied to 3, all in-state. I think they should all tour and get a feel for the school, student life, talk to the students that go there. If they’re unhappy and wish they had gone elsewhere – that’s a red flag! The students will be honest about the curriculum, life, etc., while the admissions can sometimes only offer the positives. You should choose where you can see yourself excelling – whether it’s in your home state or 5,000 miles away.

Also, what programs do you want to go into? Do those schools have a great expectancy and do well in the match in those specialties? What is their percentage of students that pass the boards the first time? That’s a great thing to keep in mind – you don’t want to go to a school in which less than 70% of students pass Step 1: another red flag.

Don’t let anyone pressure you in your decision of choosing or the program choosing you; not even your friends, family, boyfriend, etc. They can influence you, yes, but in the end, it will be you attending, sitting in lectures, studying in the library, putting in all of the hours…not them.

Accepted: Do you have any other med school admissions tips?

Student Dr. Diva: You don’t have to major in biology or chemistry, get a 4.0, score a 40 on the MCAT, go on mission trips, or save the world to get into medical school. Sure, it’s difficult to get in – everyone will agree with that or else everyone would try to do it!

I get so many questions of students giving me their stats saying they’re not good enough when they are actually fine! DO WHAT MAKES YOU HAPPY. PERIOD. If you want to major in English, so be it! If you don’t want to volunteer, and want to instruct people on kayak trips, do it! If you want to have adventures, go! BE UNIQUE, BE DIFFERENT! Medical schools are getting harder to get into and they do not want the typical pre-med anymore as it seems. They want standouts that they can remember when they sift through thousands of applications, but it is on you as to how you will stand out!

Accepted: Can you tell us about your blog and Twitter? Who is your target audience? What have you gained from the blogging/tweeting experience?

Student Dr. Diva: I started my Twitter around three years ago as a pre-med. I used to be Pre-med Princess. I loved twitter, loved being a pre-med, and as you can tell, I was girly. I never saw medical students with bedazzled school supplies, sequin backpacks, cheetah blouses, the works – so I thought I’d be the first! I even wear my cheetah blouse with my black dress pants to clinic currently! I tweeted medical jokes, typical pre-med problems, and thoughts and advice I had throughout my entire pre-med experience. I followed a lot of med students and doctors that would shout me out also.

I got accepted to med school and changed my name to Med School Queen. Now I tweet about my medical student problems, solutions, tips and advice on being a medical student, etc. I started the blog recently, probably about 2 years ago. I only have a few blog posts, I don’t blog that often but when I do I make sure they’re worth it. I love the fact that so many people around the world view it!

I’m also now on Instagram: StudentDrDiva – I had this a while ago as medschoolqueen but deleted it and made a new one. Speaking of that, I got sick of my old name as medschoolqueen, I actually recently changed it over Christmas break. I just wanted something new! I didn’t really like medschoolqueen anyway, I’m no queen of anything haha! I love getting called student doctor in the clinic and I’m just a diva at heart with my pink stethoscope so I just decided to change it to Student Dr. Diva.

My target audience for social media are pre-meds, medical students, residents, fellows, doctors, nurses, pre-vet, pre-dental, pre-PA, pre-pharm, basically all science students in general. A lot of random people follow me though I’m not sure why!

I’ve gained SO much from the social media experience. I’ve met wonderful people, made awesome connections, got to have so many opportunities and be a part of activities I’d never get to participate in without my account. I am truly honored and blessed to have so many people follow me and believe in me, and my whole purpose is to influence others in a positive light on achieving their dreams and let them know that it’s all possible and to never give up! I don’t think my life in medical school would be the same without those accounts and all the great people I’ve met and have helped me get to where I am today!

For one-on-one guidance on your med school applications, please see our catalog of med school admissions services.

You can follow Student Dr. Diva’s med school adventure by checking out her blog, Student Dr. Diva, or by following her on Twitter (@StudentDrDiva). Thank you Student Dr. Diva sharing your story with us!

Do you want to be featured in Accepted.com’s blog, Accepted Admissions Blog? If you want to share your med school journey with the world (or at least with our readers), email us at bloggers@accepted.com.

Download your free special report: Navigate the Med School Maze!

Accepted: The Premier Admissions Cosultancy
Related Resources:

5 Fatal Flaws to Avoid in Your Med School Essays
• Where Should I Apply to Medical School
Medical School Admissions: MD vs. Do Programs

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Got a Low GMAT or GPA? Top B-Schools Are Still Within Reach! http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/03/got-a-low-gmat-or-gpa-top-b-schools-are-still-within-reach/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/03/got-a-low-gmat-or-gpa-top-b-schools-are-still-within-reach/#respond Fri, 03 Apr 2015 16:42:55 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29993   Join us live on Wednesday, April 22, 2015 at 10:00 AM PST/1:00 PM EST for Get Accepted to Top B-Schools with Low Stats – a webinar that will teach you how to overcome a low GMAT/GPA and apply successfully to top business schools. Registration is required (and free). Reserve your spot for Get Accepted […]

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Register for the webinar!

 

Join us live on Wednesday, April 22, 2015 at 10:00 AM PST/1:00 PM EST for Get Accepted to Top B-Schools with Low Stats – a webinar that will teach you how to overcome a low GMAT/GPA and apply successfully to top business schools.

Registration is required (and free). Reserve your spot for Get Accepted to Top B-Schools with Low Stats now!

Reserve your spot now!

Accepted: The Premier Admissions Cosultancy

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Experiences & Advice from Columbia MBA Student Kendall Miller http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/03/advice-experiences-from-columbia-mba-student-kendall-miller/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/03/advice-experiences-from-columbia-mba-student-kendall-miller/#respond Fri, 03 Apr 2015 16:38:33 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29954 This interview is the latest in an Accepted.com blog series featuring interviews with current MBA students, offering readers a behind-the-scenes look at top MBA programs. And now for a chat with Kendall Miller, a student at Columbia Business School. Accepted: First, can you tell us a little about yourself? Where are you from? Where and what did […]

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Click here for more MBA student InterviewsThis interview is the latest in an Accepted.com blog series featuring interviews with current MBA students, offering readers a behind-the-scenes look at top MBA programs. And now for a chat with Kendall Miller, a student at Columbia Business School.

Accepted: First, can you tell us a little about yourself? Where are you from? Where and what did you study as an undergrad? Can you tell us three fun facts about yourself?

Kendall: I originally hail from the Midwest, growing up in Cincinnati, Ohio, and attending Indiana University where I graduated with honors in Finance. Afterwards, I spent four years working in Chicago as a management consultant before finally making it to New York!

Three fun facts about me: I have traveled to 30 countries in under 30 years, my favorite films are The Godfather and When Harry Met Sally, and for New Year’s Eve this year I went to a house party in Valparaiso, Chile, where I knew no one.

Accepted: Where are you in business school? What year?

Kendall: Currently I am a second year at Columbia Business School.

Accepted: What is your favorite thing about Columbia so far? If you could change one thing about the program, what would it be?

Kendall: While I have lots of favorite things about Columbia, I can narrow it down to two. First, the core classes last only a semester and you have the option to test out of core subjects. Coming from a degree in Finance and a consulting background, I was itching to get to interesting electives instead of repeating content I already knew. Second, being in New York for graduate school is amazing. The number and seniority of guest lecturers in class is largely due to the fact they just have to taxi up to campus from their office, and I’m able to be constantly networking in the city. At least once a week I am at an event off-campus, meeting people outside of the MBA community.

If I were to change one thing, it would be to have more group work space in the school. However, I do know this is a priority for the new property being developed.

Accepted: Where did you intern last summer? What role did Columbia play in helping you secure that position?

Kendall: Last summer I was lucky enough to live in Milan, Italy, working for a luxury eCommerce company called Yoox. I attribute this internship entirely to Columbia, as the CEO and co-General Manager both went to Columbia for their MBAs, and they used the resume book at school to reach out to potential candidates. My consulting background was also a huge help, as the group I was working in (Office of the CEO) consisted almost entirely of ex-consultants.

More recently I have been interning part time in the city for Moda Operandi, another luxury eCommerce company. Many people at Columbia who are interested in careers in retail, startups, venture capital and private equity do internships during the school year, particularly if they are a career switcher. Again, this is only possible because we are in the city.

Columbia also offers “block week” classes, which are accelerated classes taken at the beginning of the semester, allowing students to free up time during the school year for work.

Accepted: And do you have a job lined up yet for when you graduate? Again, how did Columbia help you during that process?

Kendall: After school I will be returning to Deloitte Consulting, which sponsored my school tuition. However, last year during the internship search I used the career office often, for resume and cover letter reviews, interview prep, and guidance when deciding between offers. The alumni network is also very valuable, and industry-specific alumni career coaches provided some of the best feedback and advice I have received to-date.

And I can’t forget the Executives in Residence! These individuals may or may not be alumni, but they are all veteran executives with expertise in a specific industry and hold weekly office hours to discuss career questions with students. I met with two in my first year when I was exploring options.

Accepted: Can you share some advice to incoming first year students, to help make their adjustment to b-school easier?

Kendall: If you are coming from a non-traditional background, I would suggest brushing up on Excel skills and getting a primer in either accounting or corporate finance. Yes, these are both core classes, but it’s better not to be caught flat footed. Getting back into the swing of weekly (or daily) homework assignments was hard for me, and it does require careful planning because there are so many things vying for your attention, and you constantly feel like it’s the “last and only opportunity” for everything.

Accepted: Looking back, what was the most challenging aspect of the MBA admissions process? How did you approach that challenge and overcome it?

Kendall: Most challenging for me was nailing down exactly what I wanted to do after school, and being able to create a coherent and well-developed narrative that tied in the MBA. It sounded clichéd, when others said I needed to have an exact job in mind. Wasn’t I going to school to figure that out? Once I was able to do that, writing my essays became so much easier, and I was able to seek out the schools that best fit my goals. Many people do change their story, their minds, once they get to school – but two years is only so long, and you don’t want to spend all of it trying to figure out what you want to do post-graduation. At some point, you need to lock that down so that networking, training, and interviewing can be focused and successful.

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

 You can read more about Kendall’s journey by checking out her website, http://www.kendallmiller.co/about/. Thank you Kendall for sharing your story with us – we wish you loads of luck!

Free on-demand webinar: Get Accepted to Columbia Business School!
Accepted: The Premier Admissions Cosultancy
Related Resources:

MBA In Sight: Focus on Finance
• Columbia Business School 2015 MBA Questions, Deadlines, Tips
B-School Student Interviews

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Why Do You Need an MBA? http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/02/why-do-you-need-an-mba/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/02/why-do-you-need-an-mba/#respond Thu, 02 Apr 2015 16:44:04 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29716 Reason for asking the question: The interviewer wants to make sure your reasons for getting an MBA match up with what the MBA degree will provide you. How to prepare: This is hopefully one of the easiest questions for you to answer. Coming from almost any function, the likely answer is that you have a […]

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Click here for step by step interview prep help! Reason for asking the question: The interviewer wants to make sure your reasons for getting an MBA match up with what the MBA degree will provide you.

How to prepare: This is hopefully one of the easiest questions for you to answer. Coming from almost any function, the likely answer is that you have a significant amount of depth in a particular field (marketing, finance, IT, engineering), but in order to break free of being labeled as simply a subject matter expert, you need more breadth.

Most people look to get an MBA in order to move into a management role or to change fields. To succeed in management, you need to have understanding of all functional areas of business, from finance to operations to technology and more. An MBA degree provides the toolbox you need to succeed in management in the shortest amount of time.

For career-switchers, a full-time MBA program provides one of the best opportunities to make that switch. It gives you everything from critical coursework to training in “soft skills” and leadership to the all-important summer internship.

Important things to remember: This is not meant to be a “gotcha” question, and you should in no way feel threatened by it. The interviewer simply wants to ensure that your expectations for the MBA are in line with what the program delivers.  They want to know you are realistic.

Additional things to consider: There is no doubt that adding an MBA degree to your resume will bolster credibility and prestige. You want to make sure you don’t come across as only going after an MBA degree because of the pedigree. That is a big turn off.

Learn how to create a compelling MBA goals essay.

Jennifer Weld worked as an admissions consultant and Former Asst. Dir. of Admissions at Cornell’s EMBA program (4 years) prior to joining Accepted.com. She has an additional 10 years of experience in higher ed and corporate marketing.

Related Resources:

• The 10 Commandments of MBA Interviews
MBA Interview Questions: Walk Me Through Your Resume
Hone Your MBA Goals [Video]

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Presenting Yourself to Medical Schools: Other Communications http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/02/presenting-yourself-to-medical-schools-other-communications-2/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/02/presenting-yourself-to-medical-schools-other-communications-2/#respond Thu, 02 Apr 2015 16:13:10 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29626 In the last part of our Medical School Reapplicant Advice: 6 Tips for Success series we discussed the importance of assessing your dinged application, especially your personal statement. Today we’ll talk about other opportunities for you to shine – not through the personal statement, but through secondary essays and interviews. With the multi-staged admissions process, applicants can make […]

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Want more tips? Click here

Discover where you went wrong then reapply with confidence.

In the last part of our Medical School Reapplicant Advice: 6 Tips for Success series we discussed the importance of assessing your dinged application, especially your personal statement. Today we’ll talk about other opportunities for you to shine – not through the personal statement, but through secondary essays and interviews.

With the multi-staged admissions process, applicants can make an impact at each step – or be weeded out. Your assessment continues by looking at other ways you communicated with the admissions committee, and whether or not they helped you past the next hurdle.

Secondaries: Your secondary essays go beyond the initial introduction and flesh out your application. The questions asked will generally give you a good indication of what the program values. In your review, you need to determine how well the information you provided demonstrates your fit with the values and offerings at that particular program.

• Did you answer the particular questions asked?

• Did your secondary essays offer a new or deeper look at your activities rather than regurgitating your personal statement? Viewed alongside your initial application, do they create a consistent but broader profile or is there a significant divergence from what was presented before?

• Did you research each school to see what made it unique? Did you bring this information into your answers, even if it was not specifically asked?

• If you recycled secondary essays from another program, did you tailor it to fit the new program? And did you make sure to use the right school name?

• Did you integrate their particular strengths and offerings into your skill set and interests?

• Did you return the secondaries in a timely manner?

• Were your secondaries free of typos and grammatical errors?

If you can answer “yes” to these questions, your secondary essays are probably not the source of your rejection. But if you aren’t confident of your answers, this is an area that you should note for your reapplication. Another sign of a problem is being invited to fill out a secondary essay, but not being invited to interview. This is a natural “weeding out” that happens throughout the season, but it indicates that your secondary essays need more punch to move to the next stage.

Interviews: If you were invited to interview at a number of schools, but didn’t receive any acceptances, it’s a pretty good signal that your interview skills need a polish.

• Do you think you practiced enough? Were you comfortable talking about yourself?

• Were you exceptionally nervous at the interview or did you feel at ease? If you were nervous, was it your first interview? If not, was there anything in particular that triggered your nervousness?

• Could you speak credibly about each program and did you know what made each one unique? Were you able to explain why you wanted to attend each program?

• If you had a multiple mini-interview, were you prepared for the format?

• Were there any questions that stumped you? Did you address these either in your thank you notes or in later communications with the program?

If you didn’t get any interviews, you should examine the issues in the sections above – you’re likely to find clues that explain your rejection there.

Finally, there are two remaining issues that have can significantly affect your application success:

Timing: Applying late might not be the only concern in your application, but your chance of admission declines as the season goes on. Those who start the process early tend to have much better results.

• Did you register with the AAMC and/or the AACOM in May and submit your application in June?

• Did you line up your recommenders early? Did you follow up to make sure they sent their recommendations in a timely manner?

• Did you take the MCAT early? Were your scores available when you submitted?

• Did you return your secondary essays in a timely manner?

• After an interview, did you send promptly thank you notes expressing your interest?

Answering “no” to any of these questions could signal a problem. Although some extremely competitive applicants do manage to secure acceptances late in the season, many more are “held,” wait-listed, or just rejected. Those who do apply later must face a larger applicant pool competing for fewer interview slots and, in many cases, fewer seats in medical school.

School Choices: It should go without saying that you need to make sure you meet each program’s admission requirements. But there are other issues to examine:

• How many medical schools did you select?

• Did you choose a spread of schools, including programs both above and below where you think you might be competitive?

• Were your state’s medical schools included in your list?

• Above all, did you consider your fit at these programs or did you just choose schools out of the blue?

The average med school applicant submits applications to 15 programs. Some submit fewer applications – if, for instance, they will only consider a particular geographic area – while some submit 30+. Highly competitive applicants can target fewer schools, but if your profile is less competitive, the number of schools should be higher.

How do you know where you’re competitive? Your basic stats are a good indication. Being within 2-3 points of a program’s mean indicates that you are a strong contender for that program – in other words, if a school’s mean GPA is 3.5, a 3.2 GPA with a strong MCAT score can be competitive. While it’s fine to deviate with a few “reach” schools, these should not make up the majority of your choices.

Also take a look at the percentage of applications accepted. Oklahoma State University accepts one in every 5 applications; Mayo and GWU accept one in 50. If all your chosen schools have a low acceptance rate, your profile will have to be much better than average.

Beyond your chosen program’s requirements, it’s also important to look at their admission preferences. Did you choose a lot of public programs in other states? Many state schools accept only a handful of out-of-state applicants. (And if your state’s medical schools aren’t on your list, this is a serious omission.)

Finally, take a good, hard look at your list of schools. Do you know something about each of them? Are these places you’d really like to attend? If you’ve completed the secondaries for each school and still can’t answer “yes” to these questions, that is a problem – one you can rectify when you reapply.

By now, you should have a pretty good idea of any missteps in your application. Unfortunately, addressing them is rarely a fast process. Often it takes years. Many people, fearing the time is ticking away, get impatient and reapply before they’re ready. Nine out of ten times, this backfires.

Instead, reapply when you are at your strongest. This will take time, but now that you have a good idea of where you went wrong, you’ll be able to focus your energies, enhance your profile, and ultimately submit a successful application.

In the next post, I’ll show you how to enhance your profile. If you want to improve your chances even more, take advantage of Accepted.com’s application review service to get a tailored assessment of your strengths and weaknesses.

Download Medical School Reapplicant Tips for Succcess
Cydney Foote By , Accepted consultant and author of Write Your Way to Medical School, who has helped future physicians craft winning applications since 2001.

Related Resources:

5 Fatal Flaws to Avoid in Your AMCAS and Secondary Essays
• What I Look for When I Interview a Candidate for Medical School
Secondary Strategy: Why Do You Want To Go Here?

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A Wharton Grad Rids the World of Bank Fees http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/01/a-wharton-grad-rids-the-world-of-bank-fees/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/01/a-wharton-grad-rids-the-world-of-bank-fees/#respond Wed, 01 Apr 2015 22:38:31 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29958 BankMobile is bank with a vision, ATMs everywhere, no fees, and no branches. Want to know more, right? For the full scoop, listen to the entire recording of our conversation with Luvleen Sidhu, Wharton alum and Chief Strategy and Marketing Officer at the mobile-only, fee-free bank for Millennials. 00:01:40 – Introducing Luvleen Sidhu and the […]

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Listen to the recording!BankMobile is bank with a vision, ATMs everywhere, no fees, and no branches.

Want to know more, right?

For the full scoop, listen to the entire recording of our conversation with Luvleen Sidhu, Wharton alum and Chief Strategy and Marketing Officer at the mobile-only, fee-free bank for Millennials.

00:01:40 – Introducing Luvleen Sidhu and the many benefits of BankMobile.

00:07:05 – BankMobile is planning to become the “Uber of banking.” True or False?

00:09:09 – Up and coming at BankMobile: The “Can I Buy” feature.

00:10:58 – How BankMobile came to be.

00:13:40 – Did you really learn anything in b-school?

00:17:55 – What Luvleen wishes she knew before b-school: The application process doesn’t end after you are admitted!

00:20:19 – The best and worst about Wharton.

00:26:41 – Advice for Wharton applicants and future entrepreneurs.

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

Related Links:

• Bankmobile
• BankMobile Aims to Become the Uber of Banking
• Wharton 2015 MBA Questions, Deadlines, Tips
Get Accepted to The Wharton School

Related Shows:

• CommonBond: How Two Wharton Grads Revolutionized Student Loans
• The Wharton Executive MBA Program: An Insider’s View
• Entrepreneurship at Stanford GSB: Carlypso Drives Down the Startup St.
• Making International Student Loans a Prime Investment
• An HBS Entrepreneur Promoting Career Flexibility
• Entrepreneurship at UCLA Anderson
• Which Schools are Good for PE/VC and VC-Backed Entrepreneurship

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Future Physicians – Get Your Personal Statement Advice HERE! http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/01/future-physicians-get-your-personal-statement-advice-here/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/04/01/future-physicians-get-your-personal-statement-advice-here/#respond Wed, 01 Apr 2015 18:46:52 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29869 The personal statement is an opportunity for you to show the ad com who you are and what kind of physician you will be. It is not a resume, a list of your failings, or a biography, but rather an opportunity for you to show medical schools what value you will add to their class, […]

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The personal statement is an opportunity for you to show the ad com who you are and what kind of physician you will be. It is not a resume, a list of your failings, or a biography, but rather an opportunity for you to show medical schools what value you will add to their class, school, and the world of medicine.

If you’re seeking step-by-step guidance to get you through the AMCAS personal statement efficiently and successfully, then you won’t want to miss our upcoming webinar, 5-Step Guide to Successful Medical School Personal Statements.

Register for the webinar!

The webinar will air live on Tuesday, April 28, 2015 at 5:00 PM PST/8:00 PM EST and will be presented by one of Accepted’s top consultants, Jessica Pishko, who will teach you the key steps you MUST complete to compose a winning AMCAS application.

The webinar is free but you need to reserve your spot in advance!

Register now for 5-Step Guide to Successful Medical School Personal Statements!

Click here to reserve your spot for the webinar!

Accepted: The Premier Admissions Cosultancy

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Will the Final 4 be Your Top Choice Schools? http://blog.accepted.com/2015/03/31/will-the-final-4-to-be-your-top-choice-schools/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/03/31/will-the-final-4-to-be-your-top-choice-schools/#respond Wed, 01 Apr 2015 02:52:08 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29755 One story-line that pops up frequently this time of year is the idea that a school that does well in the NCAA tournament will see an increase in application numbers, or in the number of students enrolling. This is popularly known as the Flutie Effect, after Doug Flutie of Boston College, whose dramatic game-winning Hail […]

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Click here for the 5 fatal flaws to avoid on your essays

Are college sports more than a game for you?

One story-line that pops up frequently this time of year is the idea that a school that does well in the NCAA tournament will see an increase in application numbers, or in the number of students enrolling. This is popularly known as the Flutie Effect, after Doug Flutie of Boston College, whose dramatic game-winning Hail Mary pass in a 1984 game has been credited with raising the college’s profile among applicants and leading to a dramatic increase in applications.

A 2009 study by economists Jaren and Devin Pope suggested that participating in the NCAA basketball tournament does translate into higher undergraduate application rates the following year: a 1% increase for teams that make the tournament, 3% for teams that make the Sweet 16, 4-5% for teams that make the Final 4, and up to 7-8% for the champion.

A 2013 working paper by Doug Chung at HBS also explored the relationship between college athletics and applications, and found that applications do rise at schools that experience success in basketball and football. Chung regards athletic success as a form of advertising for universities.

Is athletic success a factor in your decision-making process?

If you’re applying to graduate school, are you interested in a field related to athletics, such as sports management or marketing, or sports medicine? Were those interests shaped by your experience of intercollegiate athletics? Let us know!

grad 5 Fatal Flaws

Rebecca BlusteinBy Dr. Rebecca BlusteinAccepted.com consultant since 2008, former Student Affairs Officer at UCLA’s Scholarship Resource Center, and author of the ebook, Financing Your Future: Winning Fellowships, Scholarships and Awards for Grad School. Dr. Blustein, who earned her Ph.D. at UCLA, assists our clients applying to MS, MA, and Ph.D. programs. She is happy to assist you with your grad school applications.

Related Resources:

• Athletic Appeal in Admissions
Preparing for College in High School
• From Example to Exemplary

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Welcome Aboard, Esmeralda Cardenal! http://blog.accepted.com/2015/03/31/welcome-aboard-esmeralda-cardenal/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/03/31/welcome-aboard-esmeralda-cardenal/#respond Tue, 31 Mar 2015 16:40:50 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29823 Esmeralda Cardenal has served on MBA admissions committees for over 10 years—including as Admissions Director at Michigan State’s MBA program. As Associate Director of Admissions at Yale SOM, she led the school’s initiatives for women and underrepresented minorities, recruiting prospective students around the world and reviewing countless applications. Most recently, she has worked as a […]

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Read Esme's bio!Esmeralda Cardenal has served on MBA admissions committees for over 10 years—including as Admissions Director at Michigan State’s MBA program. As Associate Director of Admissions at Yale SOM, she led the school’s initiatives for women and underrepresented minorities, recruiting prospective students around the world and reviewing countless applications. Most recently, she has worked as a consultant for Cardiff Business School in the UK.

After growing up in Nicaragua, she earned a scholarship to pursue her undergraduate degree in the US. She also holds an MBA from Michigan State.

Esmeralda’s extensive experience on the other side of the table has given her deep insight into what makes an application successful—or unsuccessful.

We’re thrilled to have her as part of our team!

Check Out Esmeralda's Profile!

Accepted: The Premier Admissions Cosultancy

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US News Most Affordable Med Schools http://blog.accepted.com/2015/03/31/us-news-most-affordable-med-schools/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/03/31/us-news-most-affordable-med-schools/#respond Tue, 31 Mar 2015 15:32:49 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29771 US News and World Report has released its list of the most affordable private medical schools, based on current data for tuition and fees. Here are their top 10: (* RNP stands for “Rank Not Provided.” U.S. News does not publish the rank of schools in the bottom quarter of its top 100 med schools.) Note: […]

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US News and World Report has released its list of the most affordable private medical schools, based on current data for tuition and fees. Here are their top 10:

Click here for Med 101

(* RNP stands for “Rank Not Provided.” U.S. News does not publish the rank of schools in the bottom quarter of its top 100 med schools.)

Note: Even though Baylor College of Medicine, Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine and University of Miami’s Miller School of Medicine are private schools, they offer discounted tuition for in-state students – the numbers listed above are the out-of-state rates.

As you look at this table, keep in mind a few factors:

1.  When you are choosing where to apply, the marginal difference in cost is what you are going to need to weigh as you decide both where to apply, and if you get multiple acceptances, where to accept.

2.  The figures above are annual tuitions for the current (2014-15) year. Tuition has this habit of going up every year, and most people complete medical school in four years.

3.  Also keep in mind other costs, like the cost of living in a particular part of the country.

Are you misusing the med school rankings? Click here to find out!

Accepted: The Premier Admissions Cosultancy
Related Resources:

Navigating the Med School Maze
U.S. News 2016 Best Medical Schools – Research & Primary Care
• 5 Questions to Help You Decide Where To Apply To Medical School

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MBA School Visits: Start Off Right http://blog.accepted.com/2015/03/30/mba-school-visits-start-off-right-2/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/03/30/mba-school-visits-start-off-right-2/#respond Mon, 30 Mar 2015 16:54:10 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29833 Last season I was often asked, “How should I act during my MBA visits?”  It’s wise to consider, because adcom members start to assess your social intelligence even at this early stage. Having an effective “elevator pitch” will enable you to attend such visits without anxiety, show you to be socially adept, and free you […]

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Check out our tips for researching MBA programs.

A meaningful nugget of information can ripple to great conversation.

Last season I was often asked, “How should I act during my MBA visits?”  It’s wise to consider, because adcom members start to assess your social intelligence even at this early stage.

Having an effective “elevator pitch” will enable you to attend such visits without anxiety, show you to be socially adept, and free you to focus on listening and responding rather than thinking about what to say in those initial moments.  Aim to present a thoughtful, meaningful nugget of information to make a positive first impression and facilitate conversation.  You can use your nugget with adcom members, MBA students, and fellow applicants.  With the latter two groups, you can also follow up with “What is your industry background?” or “What are your post-MBA goals?”

Your elevator pitch should be one to two sentences only.  Its content should usually focus on present and future.  The key is to convey core information in a way that is engaging.   Here are two examples:

• Hi, I’m Mary Liu, a consultant in McKinsey’s supply chain practice.  I hope to develop and lead the next-generation of supply chain innovations in emerging markets.

• Hello, Manish Das here.  I’ve been troubleshooting Bank Paribas’ risk management applications in Eastern Europe during the global financial crisis.  Post-MBA I want to focus on developing new risk management strategies to avert such crises.

If there is something important in your past to add for a clearer picture, mention it.  E.g., a listener would probably assume Manish Das grew up in India.  What if Manish grew up in Kenya, an interesting tidbit: “Hello, Manish Das.  I grew up in Kenya.  I’ve been troubleshooting…”

Finally: practice!  Your pitch should be natural for you to say, and practicing will help you adjust it to make it so.

Enjoy your school visits!

Download your free copy of Navigating the MBA Maze!
Cindy Tokumitsu By , 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.
Related Resources:

• 6 Top Tips for Visiting Schools
• How To Pay an Effective “Virtual” School Visit
Tips for Researching MBA Programs

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A Med Student/Foodie Extraordinaire at Baylor College of Medicine http://blog.accepted.com/2015/03/30/a-med-studentfoodie-extraordinaire-at-baylor-college-of-medicine/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/03/30/a-med-studentfoodie-extraordinaire-at-baylor-college-of-medicine/#respond Mon, 30 Mar 2015 16:26:51 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29828 This interview is the latest in an Accepted.com blog series featuring interviews with medical school applicants and students, offering readers a behind-the-scenes look at top medical schools and the med school application process. And now, introducing Natalie Uy… Accepted: We’d like to get to know you! Where are you from? Where and what did you study as […]

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Click here for more med school student interviews!This interview is the latest in an Accepted.com blog series featuring interviews with medical school applicants and students, offering readers a behind-the-scenes look at top medical schools and the med school application process. And now, introducing Natalie Uy…

Accepted: We’d like to get to know you! Where are you from? Where and what did you study as an undergrad?

Natalie: Howdy! I was born in New York but grew up most of my life in San Antonio, Texas. I went to Stanford University in California (the best college ever in my humble opinion) where I got a dual degree with a BS in Biology and a BA in Art Practice, graduating in the c/o 2012.

Accepted: Where are you currently in med school? What year?

Natalie: I am currently a 3rd year at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas.

Accepted: If you could change one thing about med school, what would it be?

Natalie: There isn’t really anything that I’d change honestly. I really like how my medical education has been structured – here we have 1.5 years of pre-clinics and 2.5 years of clinical rotations.

My least favorite part is studying for boards. I know it’s a rite of passage, but Step 1 is something I’d rather not endure again!

Accepted: What’s been your favorite rotation so far? Do you think this is what you’ll eventually specialize in? 

Natalie: It’s been surprisingly hard to say. I started off with psychiatry thinking I wouldn’t like it, but it was a great experience. My first clinical experience as a young MS2 was interviewing a psychotic patient in the county hospital ER – nothing teaches you the DSMV criteria for schizophrenia better than the patient himself. Similarly, I thought I wouldn’t like surgery but seriously considered it after I had particularly exceptional teachers in vascular and ENT.

I’ve decided to go into Internal Medicine – not because of my specific rotation per se, but because of what I felt was the best fit for me. I think when choosing a specialty it’s important to look at the specialty itself and filter out biases like the hospitals, the attendings, the residents, etc. I knew I needed a lot of interaction with patients and decided to stay with the cerebral side of medicine. I liked the variety of diseases in IM and although I enjoyed a pediatrics a lot, I liked being able to directly converse with my adult patients. I also knew I want to have a family in the future and be involved with raising my kids, so it was also a flexible choice. I will probably further subspecialize in IM, but exactly when remains to be seen.

Accepted: Did you go straight from college to med school? How would you advise others who are deciding between taking a gap year or not?

Natalie: Although many people from Stanford take a gap year, I went straight. I knew exactly what I wanted to do – be a doctor! – so I was ready to start medical school, and I don’t regret not having a gap year.

Taking a gap year is always a personal decision of course. My friends who took gap years did it because they were burnt out from school or wanted to strengthen their applications with research or boost their GPA or have other life experiences first. I don’t know anyone who regretted taking a gap year, so I don’t think it’s ever a bad idea. The only thing to consider is that the longer you wait, the harder it may be in getting back into the habit of classes and exams, as some of my older classmates were 5-10 years out from college.

Accepted: Can you tell us about your food blog? Is there any connection to your passion for medicine in your blog? Can you direct us to your three favorite posts?

Natalie: Oh yes – to take time off from studying, I run a food blog called Obsessive Cooking Disorder (fondly known as OCD). I started it just prior to medical school to document recipes I tried and liked, but it’s definitely grown; all the photography and writing is done by me. The art of food photography – styling to make the food look amazing is always a fun artistic challenge. I’ll write about a variety of topics – history and tips on a particular food, funny conversations with friends and family, and often, stories on my medical journal.

It’s also nice because I can share with other fellow students what life is like – good days and bad – as well as document how I felt on a given rotation. Medical school goes by in a flash, and I want to remember every moment of it – from preclinicals and clinics to studying for boards to Match Day!

Natali - MED IV

Here are a few recipes about my medical journey.
• Crostini
• Black Forest Cake (Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte)
• Ben and Jerry’s Cherry Garcia
• Cinnamon Craisin Walnut Sourdough
• All American Brownies
Mocha Cupcakes with Kahlua Buttercream

Accepted: How have you shared your love of food with your patients / the Medical Center/ the Houston community?

Natalie: I’ve been able to channel my culinary skills with patients as one of the leaders for CHEF (Choosing Healthy, Eating Fresh), our student organization promoting wellness and nutrition. We run an amazing unique cooking elective where trained chefs teach our medical students how to cook (we cook 3 course meals right at Baylor over the course of a semester) and started a Farmer’s Market co-op for the medical center. We also do hands-on cooking classes with adolescents at Texas Children’s Hospital Bariatric program and Rice University’s PAIR refugee program at local high schools. We’ve have cooking demonstrations at numerous community health fairs and wellness races, which people always love.

I’ve been lucky to be incredibly involved with both the student and the greater community through cooking – I love writing up new recipes and educating patients on healthy options! No matter what the age, race/culture, or location of your patients, everyone loves to eat, so it’s a great bond.

Accepted: Looking back at the med school admissions process, what would you say was your greatest challenge? What steps did you take to overcome that challenge? 

Natalie: The most difficult part was doing everything while I was currently a college student. Because I didn’t take a gap year, I didn’t have as much time to get things like research publications on my resume or study as much for my MCAT. I had to study for my MCAT in the midst of applying for research grants, getting my honors thesis proposal ready, and taking an enormous load of courses because of my dual degree (I completed 5 years of courses in 4 years). Time management was definitely key, but it prepared me very well for medical school.

Accepted: Do you have any tips for incoming first year students? What do you wish you would’ve known before starting med school to make your transition easier?

Natalie: The most difficult part of adjusting to med school is realizing that not only is everyone incredibly smart, everyone is also so hard working. Don’t stress if you’re not in the top of your class anymore – just strive to be the best doctor you can be. I encourage people not to see fellow medical students as competition, but as future colleagues and co-workers. After all, you’d want to refer your grandmother to the best doctors in the future – your classmates!

Definitely the most important thing is to have a work-life balance. I make a point to exercise daily, cook/bake with my blog and make artwork. Also remember to have fun and socialize – I could not have made it without my significant other, friends, and family. Medicine is a journey, not a destination!

For one-on-one guidance on your med school applications, please see our catalog of med school admissions services.

You can follow Natalie’s med school adventure by checking out her blog, Obsessive Cooking Disorder. Thank you Natalie for sharing your story with us!

Do you want to be featured in Accepted.com’s blog, Accepted Admissions Blog? If you want to share your med school journey with the world (or at least with our readers), email us at bloggers@accepted.com.

Download your free copy of 5 Fatal Flaws to Avoid in Your Med School Application Essays!
Accepted: The Premier Admissions Cosultancy
Related Resources:

Navigating the Med School Maze
• Insights of an M3 at the UNC School of Medicine
Residency Admissions: What if I Didn’t Match

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Columbia Jterm App to be Released Early http://blog.accepted.com/2015/03/29/columbia-jterm-app-released-early/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/03/29/columbia-jterm-app-released-early/#respond Mon, 30 Mar 2015 05:01:16 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29873 For those of you who can’t wait to move forward with your 2016 MBA applications — especially those of you interested in Columbia Business School‘s January entry option (AKA Jterm)–I’ve got good news: The Columbia Jterm application for the 2015-16 application cycle will be available on April 23, 2015.  You can learn more by registering […]

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Columbia Jterm Releases Application Early

Columbia releases its Jterm application in April.

For those of you who can’t wait to move forward with your 2016 MBA applications — especially those of you interested in Columbia Business School‘s January entry option (AKA Jterm)–I’ve got good news:

The Columbia Jterm application for the 2015-16 application cycle will be available on April 23, 2015.  You can learn more by registering for Columbia’s MBA Virtual Session: January Entry  Experience to be held on April 22.

And you can become an absolute expert on Columbia admissions by tuning into the Admissions Straight Talk April 22 show, when I will explore CBS MBA admissions with a special focus on JTerm by interviewing representatives from CBS’ MBA admissions office.  (Even better: subscribe to AST and then you can’t miss it!)

There will also be an On-Campus Information Session in July for Columbia Jterm applicants. (Registration & exact date TBA).

The application deadline for Columbia Jterm is October 7, 2015.

Can you believe it? The 2014-15 MBA application season isn’t even over, and the next one is beginning. It’s almost like ever-expanding sports seasons. Let the fun begin!

Free on-demand webinar: Get Accepted to Columbia Business School!

Linda AbrahamBy 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.

Related Resources:

MBA Rankings: What You Need to Know
• Columbia Business School 2015 MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines
• MBA Application Timing

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New to The Team: Carol Drummer http://blog.accepted.com/2015/03/29/new-to-the-team-carol-drummer/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/03/29/new-to-the-team-carol-drummer/#respond Sun, 29 Mar 2015 17:34:23 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29817 We’re excited to welcome Carol Drummer to our staff. Carol brings over 20 years of experience in higher education, including 10 years as Dean of Graduate Admissions at Hofstra. She has coached and mentored thousands of prospective MBA, Ph.D, MFA, MA/MS and Pre-Med Post Baccalaureate graduate students through the application, admission, and enrollment process. And […]

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Click here to check out Carol's profile!We’re excited to welcome Carol Drummer to our staff. Carol brings over 20 years of experience in higher education, including 10 years as Dean of Graduate Admissions at Hofstra. She has coached and mentored thousands of prospective MBA, Ph.D, MFA, MA/MS and Pre-Med Post Baccalaureate graduate students through the application, admission, and enrollment process. And as Dean, she reviewed admissions decisions for thousands of applicants. She knows what committees are looking for, and can help you put together the most effective application possible.

Carol is also a professor of communication and rhetoric, and is co-writing an “Admission 101” book for parents.

We’re thrilled to welcome her to our team!

Check out Carols Profile!
Accepted: The Premier Admissions Cosultancy

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Medical Minority Applicant Registry: Who, How, & Why? http://blog.accepted.com/2015/03/29/medical-minority-applicant-registry-who-how-why/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/03/29/medical-minority-applicant-registry-who-how-why/#respond Sun, 29 Mar 2015 16:01:39 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29793 AAMC’s Medical Minority Applicant Registry (Med-MAR) is specifically designed to improve admissions opportunities for students from groups underrepresented in the medical field or who have an economically disadvantaged background. Who: Med-MAR is for U.S. citizens or Permanent Resident Visa holders who identify as economically disadvantaged or who come from the following historically underrepresented ethnic or […]

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Check out our med 101 page for more info

Being a minority can be a major advantage.

AAMC’s Medical Minority Applicant Registry (Med-MAR) is specifically designed to improve admissions opportunities for students from groups underrepresented in the medical field or who have an economically disadvantaged background.

Who: Med-MAR is for U.S. citizens or Permanent Resident Visa holders who identify as economically disadvantaged or who come from the following historically underrepresented ethnic or racial groups in medicine: African-American/Black, American Indian/Alaska Native, Hispanic/Latino, or Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander.

How: Such applicants may opt into the Med-MAR program by either accepting or rejecting participation during MCAT registration.

Why: Med schools use the registry to help them find applicants that will enrich the diversity of their student body. Disclaimer from the AAMC website: “Med-MAR serves only as a means of identifying and communicating the availability of applicants from groups who self-identify as underrepresented in medicine and/or as economically disadvantaged. No attempt is made by Med-MAR to advise students where to apply or to influence any admissions decisions.”

Note: Participating in AAMC’s Fee Assistance Program (FAP) does not automatically put applicants on the Med-MAR registry.

Download your free special report: Navigate the Med School Maze!

Accepted: The Premier Admissions Cosultancy
Related Resources:

How to Write the Statement of Disadvantage
• The Story of an Aspiring Minority Doctor
The AAMC Fee Assistance Program: How & Who Should Apply

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We Found Your Keys… http://blog.accepted.com/2015/03/27/we-found-your-keys/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/03/27/we-found-your-keys/#respond Fri, 27 Mar 2015 16:32:24 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29061 …that is, the keys that will help you unlock the secrets to postbac application success! Once you view the recording of 9 Keys to Postbac Acceptance in 2015, you’ll significantly improve your chances of choosing the right postbac program, identifying the best recommenders, and applying successfully to the postbac program that will launch your future […]

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…that is, the keys that will help you unlock the secrets to postbac application success! Once you view the recording of 9 Keys to Postbac Acceptance in 2015, you’ll significantly improve your chances of choosing the right postbac program, identifying the best recommenders, and applying successfully to the postbac program that will launch your future as a physician.

View the webinar!

You’ve got questions; we’ve got answers. Discover the keys to admission when you view 9 Keys to Postbac Acceptance in 2015 now!

View the download!

Accepted: The Premier Admissions Cosultancy

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How Much Will a Top MBA Earn You? http://blog.accepted.com/2015/03/26/how-much-will-a-top-mba-earn-you/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/03/26/how-much-will-a-top-mba-earn-you/#respond Thu, 26 Mar 2015 16:18:37 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29739 Poets & Quants released some excellent data last week on the value of an MBA, concluding that b-school grads did very well in 2014 in regards to average salary and bonus. Here are some highlights from the article: • In 2014, Harvard and Stanford grads earned average salaries that exceeded pre-recession levels for the first […]

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Do rankings really make a difference? Poets & Quants released some excellent data last week on the value of an MBA, concluding that b-school grads did very well in 2014 in regards to average salary and bonus. Here are some highlights from the article:

• In 2014, Harvard and Stanford grads earned average salaries that exceeded pre-recession levels for the first time. For Harvard MBAs, the average salary was $144,750, compared to $144,261 in 2008. The average salary for Stanford MBAs was $142,834, compared to 2008’s $140,771.

• There were a total of seven b-schools that reported average pay above $140K. Michigan Ross was one of these schools whose salary and bonus package jumped 20.9% in five years to $140,497.

• Washington Foster experienced a huge increase in average salary and bonuses, from $91,593 in 2010 up 36.9% to $125.367 in 2014. Average salary and bonuses also took huge leaps at Rochester Simon (30.6% – from $78,083 to $101,961) and at Emory Goizueta (28.0% – from $100,300 to $128,347).

• In 2010, only 24 U.S. business schools landed job that paid six-figures; in 2014, that number increased significantly to 44 schools.

• The top five schools with the most highly compensated grads were HBS, MIT Sloan, Stanford, Wharton, and Tuck.

• A few schools saw year-over-year decreases, including USC (from $116,011 to $114,129), Boston Carroll (from $96,915 to $94,963), and Minnesota Carlson (from $117,972 to $112,828).

See the P&Q article for more details.

Are You Misusing the B-School Rankings?

Accepted: The Premier Admissions Cosultancy
Related Resources:

MBA in Sight: Focus on Finance
• Does it Pay to Get an MBA?
• PayScale: How Much Can You Earn, and How to Earn It?

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Presenting Yourself to Medical Schools: Your Primary Application http://blog.accepted.com/2015/03/26/presenting-yourself-to-medical-schools-your-primary-application-2/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/03/26/presenting-yourself-to-medical-schools-your-primary-application-2/#respond Thu, 26 Mar 2015 15:49:12 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29385 In Part 1 of our Medical School Reapplicant Advice: 6 Tips for Success series we talked about taking a step back and reevaluating your desire to go to med school, as well as your qualifications and skill. Today we’ll move on to assessing your application to determine what went wrong. The second part of your assessment […]

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Click here to read the full series.

Did your application portray you the way you intended?

In Part 1 of our Medical School Reapplicant Advice: 6 Tips for Success series we talked about taking a step back and reevaluating your desire to go to med school, as well as your qualifications and skill. Today we’ll move on to assessing your application to determine what went wrong.

The second part of your assessment will examine how you presented yourself to the admissions committees. Keep in mind that these aspects of your application are necessarily subjective – there are often no right or wrong answers – but they should be subjected to the same rigorous critique as the previous section. Unlike your MCAT scores or grades, however, applicants have a lot of control over the elements in this section. Did you take full advantage of this to show yourself in the best light? This question is especially relevant when we look at the written portion of your application.

I find the accuracy of an assessment improves when it’s distinct from the remedies. This kind of critical review is not for the faint of heart. Chances are, you poured your hopes and dreams into your application the first time around. Figuring out where you went wrong is painful. For this reason, we’re not going to examine how to address your weaknesses just yet. That will come in future sections. For now, let’s focus on how the admissions committee saw you, based on your interactions.

Personal Statement: There’s no doubt that personal statements are highly subjective – what works for one reader might not work for the next. Nonetheless, it’s important to ask whether, in your honest opinion, you’ve presented the strongest possible personal statement.

• Was it enjoyable and interesting to read? If you were reading this about another person, would they come across strong? Would this be someone you might want as your physician?

• Did your essay begin with a strong lead paragraph that inspired the reader to continue?

• Did it tell a compelling story and describe your experiences instead of just listing what you’d done? Did you support claims about your abilities with anecdotal evidence?

• Did the essay focus on you rather than your projects or mentors?

• Did your stories demonstrate the key qualities desired in medical students: commitment, compassion, leadership, curiosity, critical thinking, maturity, etc.?

• Were there any typos or grammatical errors?

• Did you have anyone else review it for content and style before submission?

Whether you’re a first-rate candidate or a borderline student, your personal statement will make an impression on the med school admissions committee. If you can’t answer “yes” to all the above questions, that impression might not be the one you want.

Experiences: The experiences you choose to include in this section must reflect that you are a multi-dimensional person – one with the passion, curiosity, and integrity to excel in medical school. The experiences section is your chance to include any aspects of your background where you made an impact and showed your commitment.

• Did the activities you described reflect a breadth of activities and intellectual pursuits?

• Did you focus on your responsibilities rather than just describing the experience?

• Did you identify what impact you had on each organization/project?

• Did you identify why each experience affected your commitment to enter medicine?

• How did you justify the choice of your most meaningful experiences? Were your longer essays personal and authentic?

• When writing about the experiences in your primary essay, did you provide additional details rather than repeating information?

The AMCAS application only allows 700 characters to describe each activity, while the AACOM allows 750 characters. Cramming relevant, compelling information into these shorter essays can be awfully challenging. In your review, you need to examine whether you made each character count.

Letters of Recommendation: Although not technically how you represent yourself, recommendation letters are an extremely important part of the application process and your challenge is to find faculty members who can write a compelling letter.

• Did you select recommenders who know you well, preferably beyond the classroom?

• Did your chosen recommenders represent different areas of your life to reflect your diverse pursuits?

• Did you supply them with your CV or a list of activities so they have a better idea of your pursuits?

• Did you advise them of any areas that you specifically wanted them to address to balance the rest of your application?

• If you were asked to write your own recommendation, did you do so in a timely manner so they would have time for edits?

• Did you provide each recommender with clear instructions about submitting them to either the AMCAS Letters service or for the AACOM?

You might be feeling a bit fragile after such a critical review. If so, you’re doing it right. This exercise demands that you be ruthless and identify every potential flaw. Your ego might not like it, but you will when you have a clear roadmap to address your weaknesses.

Next post looks at the next hurdles in the admissions process, and how well you cleared them.

If you feel like you need another pair of eyes on your application, take advantage of Accepted.com’s review service to get a tailored assessment of your strengths and weaknesses.

Download Medical School Reapplicant Tips for Succcess

Cydney Foote By , Accepted consultant and author of Write Your Way to Medical School, who has helped future physicians craft winning applications since 2001.

 

Related Resources:

• Applying to Medical School with Low Stats: What You Need to Know
Med School Kicks Off: Ten Tips to Get You Through The Season
• Get Accepted to Medical School in 2016, a free webinar

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Exploring the Part-Time MBA Options at NYU Stern http://blog.accepted.com/2015/03/25/exploring-the-part-time-mba-options-at-nyu-stern/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/03/25/exploring-the-part-time-mba-options-at-nyu-stern/#respond Wed, 25 Mar 2015 17:32:04 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29767 Not all b-school students are career changers. Not all seeking an MBA want a full-time program that requires them to leave the work force. Enter the part-time MBA, specifically the part-time MBA program at NYU Stern Langone, the option for students who want to keep their jobs while earning a top MBA. Want to learn […]

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Click here for NYU Stern Lagone 2015 MBA Essay Tips & DeadlinesNot all b-school students are career changers. Not all seeking an MBA want a full-time program that requires them to leave the work force.

Enter the part-time MBA, specifically the part-time MBA program at NYU Stern Langone, the option for students who want to keep their jobs while earning a top MBA.

Want to learn more? Listen to the full recording of our conversation with Isser Gallogly, Assistant Dean of MBA Admissions for NYU Stern for a run-down on the flexible MBA programs at Stern.

00:00:54 – Featured Applicant Question: Is finding a home for two stray dogs community service?

00:03:15 – An overview of the part-time programs at NYU Stern.

00:06:12 – How the new Accelerated Program works.

00:13:26 – Admissions requirements/standards for the part-time MBA programs.

00:18:09 – Stern’s Career Center for Working Professionals.

00:21:51 – The Advanced Professional Certificates in Finance, Marketing, and General Business. A non-degree alternative.

00:29:36 – Time management is essential for part-time MBA students. Is the adcom looking for candidates with this skill?

00:31:46 – Great advice for potential applicants.

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

Related Links:

• NYU Stern Langone
• Accelerated Part-time MBA Program with sample schedule
• Advanced Professional Certificates
An Artist at B-School: Interview with an NYU Stern Langone Student
• NYU Stern 2015 MBA Essay  Tips
• NYU Stern Langone 2015 MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines
• Nik’s Comment

Related Shows:

• From Luxury Marketing to Entrepreneurship: A Talk with Daria Burke
• An NYU Stern Grad and Strat Consultant Helping Vets Get Into School
• The Wharton Executive MBA Program: An Insider’s View

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March Madness and Story Time http://blog.accepted.com/2015/03/25/march-madness-and-story-time/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/03/25/march-madness-and-story-time/#respond Wed, 25 Mar 2015 16:38:36 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29749 Is your bracket busted yet? (Probably.) One of the things that draws even casual sports fans to March Madness is the storylines—the last-minute excitement, the players’ personal stories, the upsets, the Cinderella runs deep into the tournament. And during the tournament, absolutely everything becomes a story. As I write, one of the top stories on […]

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Can your application tell a story?Is your bracket busted yet? (Probably.)

One of the things that draws even casual sports fans to March Madness is the storylines—the last-minute excitement, the players’ personal stories, the upsets, the Cinderella runs deep into the tournament.

And during the tournament, absolutely everything becomes a story. As I write, one of the top stories on Yahoo Sports is about the chair that GA State coach Ron Hunter fell out of in excitement when his son hit a game winning shot. Yes—the chair, which is now a treasured object of superstitious reverence. Of course! But another great story (and one of the enduring images of this year’s tournament, even after GA State was eliminated in the next round).

Stories make the game more exciting by giving us a personal connection to it. That’s how we tend to relate to the world around us. And I think it’s a useful thing to remember when you’re writing application essays: stories matter.

Your personal experiences add depth and interest to your application essays, helping you stand out and illustrating the qualities and goals you’re explaining. As you prepare to write, think about the stories you want to tell. It can be helpful to do some prewriting—think through some of the experiences you want to write about and what you learned from them, as well as how they relate to what you want to do in the future. This will give you some good material to draw on in your essay(s).

And…Go Bruins! (If they’re eliminated by the time you read this—better luck next year.)

Learn how to use sample essays to create an exemplary essay of your own!

 

Rebecca BlusteinBy Dr. Rebecca BlusteinAccepted.com consultant since 2008, former Student Affairs Officer at UCLA’s Scholarship Resource Center, and author of the ebook, Financing Your Future: Winning Fellowships, Scholarships and Awards for Grad School. Dr. Blustein, who earned her Ph.D. at UCLA, assists our clients applying to MS, MA, and Ph.D. programs. She is happy to assist you with your grad school applications.

Related Resources: 

• 5 Fatal Flaws to Avoid in Your Application Essays
• Telling Your Story in Your Application Essay
• MBA Application Essays: All You Need is a Story

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It’s about Way More than the Grades at the Ross BBA Program http://blog.accepted.com/2015/03/24/its-about-way-more-than-the-grades-at-the-ross-bba-program/ http://blog.accepted.com/2015/03/24/its-about-way-more-than-the-grades-at-the-ross-bba-program/#respond Tue, 24 Mar 2015 16:56:45 +0000 http://blog.accepted.com/?p=29701 Accepted: We’d like to get to know you! Where are you from? Where and what are you studying? Danny: I am from West Bloomfield. I am a senior at the University of Michigan studying Business. I also have a passion for technology so have taken various computer science and product design classes over the years. […]

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Download: 5 Fatal Flaws to Avoid in your Grad School Statement of Purpose Accepted: We’d like to get to know you! Where are you from? Where and what are you studying?

Danny: I am from West Bloomfield. I am a senior at the University of Michigan studying Business. I also have a passion for technology so have taken various computer science and product design classes over the years.

Accepted: Why did you choose Ross’s BBA program? How is it the best program for you?

Danny: I chose the Ross BBA program because of my interest in business from a young age. Ross was the best program for me because of its flexibility and variety of classes. While I knew I was interested in business, I had no idea what that really meant or what specifically I was interested in. Ross gave me the ability to figure this out.

Accepted: Which other programs had you considered when you were applying to schools a few years ago?

Danny: Computer Science, School of Information

Accepted: Now that you’re about to graduate, can you share some advice with students who are may be starting out their undergraduate careers in the fall? What do you wish you would’ve known before starting the BBA program?

Danny: It’s about way more than the grades. The people you meet and the experiences you share are more important and valuable than any single class or skill you learn.

Accepted: Can you share some job highlights with us? What are some of your most recent jobs?

Danny: Last summer, I worked at Lightbank, an early stage VC firm in Chicago. I did some traditional analyst work but I spent most of my time as a designer-in-residence. 

Accepted: Do you have a post-graduation job lined up yet? What role (if any) did Ross’s career services department help you in this process?

Danny: Yes, I will be working at Trunk Club in Chicago as a Product Designer. Ross Career Services didn’t play any role directly (I recruited only off-campus) but I have done a few mock interviews/career workshops over the years.

Accepted: Do you plan on pursuing additional degrees?

Danny: Not in the near future, but it’s a possibility down the road. In my current field (technology/design), the degree you have is not as important as experience/skills. However, I could see myself going back to school to get an MBA eventually.

Accepted: Do you have any other tips for our applicants?

Danny: Figure out what you really want to do before applying. A genuine and honest application will get you further than anything else.

For one-on-one guidance on your college applications, please see our College Application Packages.

You can read more about Danny’s journey by checking out his website, http://dannyfreed.com/, or by following him on Twitter (@dannyfreed). Thank you Danny for sharing your story with us – we wish you loads of luck!

Download 5 Fatal Flaws to Avoid to learn how to eliminate the most common flaws in your application essays.
Accepted: The Premier Admissions Cosultancy
Related Resources:

• The Quick Guide to Admissions Resumes
Michigan Ross B-School Zone
• An IE Grad Reflects on Spain, School, and Career Searching

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