Business School?

  1. Hi everyone,

    I was wondering how likely the chances are of getting into a top 20 business school (i.e. Columbia, NYU) straight out of college? Does limited work experience work very much against you? I haven't done much in the field and am going to be working "seriously" for the first time this summer. And how important are GMAT scores...what cutoff would you recommend for those schools?

    Also, almost all interviews are by invitation only. If you get invited for one, is that a good or bad sign? Does it mean that you are a top candidate and they want to get to know you better, or does it mean you're borderline and the interview makes/breaks your application?

    Lastly, about recommendations, does it have to be from a professor in your major, or can profs from other classes give them?

    Thank you so much!
  2. Do you mean business school MBA programs or Ph.D. programs?
  3. it's really hard to get into a good mba program outta college... the bf had a near 4.0 from caltech and he got into ucla only (he only applied to top schools). he also got into mit but they wanted him to do a joint phd/mba program which he didnt want to do so he opted for ucla.
  4. Hi foxy - I meant an MBA program.

    Ally - Woah! That's harsh! I don't have anywhere near a 4.0
  5. Hi shu!

    You know I know too many MBAs... lol!

    As far as the kids I know, not a single one of them went to an MBA program out of college. In fact, its your work experience that's a big boost when you're applying to a MBA program. Chances seem slim of getting in at the top 20 without any work experience... even if you are coming from an awesome undergrad, like yourself!

    Currently a best friend of mine is doing his MBA at Harvard... he says the span of work-before-MBA-time is 2-6 years for his class.

    Sorry, that's as much advice I can offer, and I know it's only from personal perspective. But I'd be happy to put you in contact with some friends who can probably be of better service to you. Let me know!
  6. Some schools require some work experience first. I believe UPenn's Wharton requires you to have 2 years work experience before you can try to get in. That's what I've been told before when I was thinking about going there straight after college. I have a 4.0 and unless I score really good in the GMAT, there's no exception at all. Needless to say, I decided to wait on it as I am fine where I am right now and would not know what to do with my MBA (I am not kidding, I have no idea what I can do with it as I learned that what I learned in college has not much of a connection with what I do at work right now).
  7. As a general rule, the top B-schools prefer to take invidivuals who have significant work experience. For example, Kellogg's most recent stats show that the average candidate came into their program with anywhere from 8 to 20 years, with the average being about 12 years. As far as GMAT scores, Wharton's average was right around 700. Because many applicants to the top-tier programs have these qualities, the emphasis on undergraduate performance is significantly less than it would be if you were attempting to enter it directly out of university.

    I've found that if you can get an interview, you're in like Flynn, but it's definitely the application that makes or breaks you. Although I was accepted into 3 out of the 4 programs I applied for, I decided to take a slightly different route and get an MA in my field along with a PMP certification. It's a rare combination that's well sought after, I've found! :biggrin:
  8. Thanks for the advice everyone! I've been looking at the stats too and they're discouraging, with average age of 27-8 and average work experience of 7-8 years. However, when I was browsing through, many schools like Harvard and Columbia seemed to be really interested in seeing apps from recent graduates. Harvard has a whole page encouraging people to apply direct out of college. I know the chances are definitely slim to none for me though. On the other hand, most of these schools will waive the application fee for you if you apply as a college senior, so I'm thinking I really have nothing to lose right? Except the fee for taking the GMAT, but that can last five years so it won't be a bad investment (allowing for the fact that I actually do well!).

    On that topic, about how much time should I spend prepping for the GMATs? I know it's hard to compare, but if you had to, how would you rate it compared to the SATs?

    Again, thank you so much!

    P.S. - IntlSet, I'm at school right now, but I'll def. IM you later! Thanks buddy! :biggrin:
  9. On a side note, the reason for my initial (and sudden!) interest in going for an MBA is that I'm worried that I just don't have the work experience to obtain a job at a top firm. How likely would these large firms hire someone whose experience only came from tiny, no-name companies?
  10. WOW, I did not know that! Best wishes with your decision... I agree, you really don't have much to lose. You *know* you're going to rock the GMAT, don't even give me that poo-pahing "if I actually do well..."
  11. With an MBA degree and no work experience, it will work against you as well when you compete for top jobs after the MBA program. Why would a top company hire you over someone with years of experience and practical knowledge?

    A lot of school encourage people to apply, they bank on the application fee. From what I know, work experience is very heavily weighted.