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Balance Your MBA Applications by Conveying Qualitative and Quantitative Impact

Balance Your MBA Applications by Conveying Qualitative and Quantitative Impact

When it comes to conveying your marketing message to the admissions committees at top business schools, it is important to relate your various profile characteristics in a meaningful way.  Often, applicants are naturally very good at doing this in either a quantitative or qualitative way, but it’s actually important to do both.

Veritas Prep Consultant Spotlight: Get to Know Marcus, Wharton MBA

Veritas Prep Consultant Spotlight: Get to Know Marcus, Wharton MBA

Are you applying to the world’s top business schools?  Do you need help crafting the best application possible and standing out to admissions committees?  Veritas Prep has the most stellar MBA admissions consulting team in the industry – we’re talking the Jedi Knights of admissions consulting – and we can help you achieve your MBA goals!

Dartmouth (Tuck) Application Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

Dartmouth (Tuck) Application Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

Dartmouth’s Tuck School of Business recently released its application essays and deadlines for the 2014-2015 admissions season. Like so many other top MBA programs these days, Tuck has eliminated an essay, going down to just two required essay prompts this year. The two essays that remain are taken directly from last year’s application (with just one subtle tweak to the second essay prompt).

The Importance of Innovation in Your MBA Applications

The Importance of Innovation in Your MBA Applications

In addition to being a strong leader, a team player and an all-around impressive contributor to the workplace, business schools are looking for innovative thinkers.  When you hear the word innovation, many think of filing patents or launching products, both of which would certainly go a long way towards demonstrating innovative thinking to be sure, but innovation can be so much more.

Michigan (Ross) Application Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

Michigan (Ross) Application Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

The University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business recently announced its application essays and deadlines for the 2014-2015 admissions season. After dropping from four required essays to three last year, the Ross MBA admissions team decided to shed another one, going down to just two required essays this year. And, the two required essays that remain are entirely new this year. The changes just keep coming!

Craft a Compelling Work History for Your MBA Applications

Craft a Compelling Work History for Your MBA Applications

One of the most important profile characteristics for any b-school applicant is their work history.  Unlike Law School, Medical School and just about every other terminal degree or master’s level program, business school requires students to come with some kind of work experience under their belts in order to “qualify.”   In addition to being unique, therefore it’s also very important to have this credential, since much of what you learn in business school ends up coming from your classmates, and in turn, they learn from your perspective and experience.

GMAT Scores vs. Average Starting MBA Salaries

GMAT Scores vs. Average Starting MBA Salaries

It’s not a stretch to say that the more prestigious the business school you attend, the higher your starting post-graduation salary will tend to be. The more prestigious your MBA program is, the more options you will tend to have in the job hunt, and the higher potential employers will be willing to go to hire you. The more options you have and the more marketable you are, the more you’re probably going to make when you come right out of business school.

Filed in: Business School, GMAT
MIT Sloan Admissions Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

MIT Sloan Admissions Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

The MIT Sloan School of Management has released its admissions essays and deadlines for the 2014-2015 application season. Sloan has actually bucked the trend we’ve seen lately; the school still has two admissions essays, and actually increased the maximum allowed word count for its second essay (which is new this year)! The new question that Sloan added is a good one, but it will present you with some unique challenges, which we discuss more below.

Build a Stronger Application for Business School

Build a Stronger Application for Business School

It’s not uncommon for students to have an academic transgression in their undergraduate experience.  Perhaps you failed your introductory computer programming course as I did, or just never got your mind around all those esoteric English courses or math courses.  Even if you graduated with a decent GPA, unless you had a perfect record, you likely have something you can point to in college that you wish you could do over.  While you can’t go back and literally do it over again, you do have the opportunity now to build what some refer to as an “alternative transcript,” which can help mitigate the poor performance of the past and reassure the admissions committee you now have what it takes to succeed in a rigorous curriculum.

Columbia Business School Application Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

Columbia Business School Application Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

Columbia Business School has released its application deadlines and essays for the 2014-2015 admissions season. Like other business schools, Columbia has done some more trimming to its essays, which we discuss in more detail below.

What Do Top MBA Programs Like Harvard, Wharton, and Booth Look for in Your Application?

What Do Top MBA Programs Like Harvard, Wharton, and Booth Look for in Your Application?

When deciding to go back to business school, the first thing applicants often do is make a self-assessment of their core qualifications.  While things like work experience and career goals can be very subjective, there are two key numbers which like it or not, tend to size up candidates fairly easily, at least from a cursory overview.  It’s no big secret that these metrics are the GMAT score and the grade point average.

The Key to Crafting Your MBA Application

The Key to Crafting Your MBA Application

Business schools receive applications from a wide variety of people from very diverse backgrounds.  Because there are no strict requirements about what you have done (only that you have indeed done something), business schools entertain hopeful applications from just about every career field imaginable.  Still, most applicants to business school come from what’s considered “traditional” industries and functions.  In fact, from the chart below compiled at the Veritas Prep home office, you will see something you may not have noticed on your own.  The overwhelming majority of the accepted applicants to top business schools in recent years (70%) have come from just four professional fields:  Consulting, Finance, Sales/Marketing, and Management.

Wharton Application Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

Wharton Application Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania recently released its MBA admissions deadlines and essays for the 2014-2015 application season. The trend that picked up speed last year has continued: After dropping its number of required essays from three to two last year, Wharton has announced that this year’s application contains only one required essay. We keep asking, “How much lower can they go?” but admissions officers keep finding a way to shed essays and put more emphasis on other parts of the application.

Where Do You Fit into the MBA Admissions Process?

Where Do You Fit into the MBA Admissions Process?

There are traditionally two types of business school students, which I grant you, fall into very broad, generalized buckets: Poets & Quants.  It’s likely if you have begun digging into b-school research already that you have come across these categories and have therefore considered where you might be located.  It’s often fairly obvious who fits in where, and certainly there are exceptions for folks who truly straddle both categories, but by and large, you will identify with either one or the other, and knowing where you come from can often help you in the application process.  It can possibly also help you in other ways as well, such as when you are working on team projects in school, or afterwards, when the time comes to choose your post MBA job opportunity.

AIGAC Applicant Survey Shows that Applicants Are Positive Overall on Video Responses

AIGAC Applicant Survey Shows that Applicants Are Positive Overall on Video Responses

Last week, at its 7th annual global conference, the Association of International Graduate Admissions Consultants (AIGAC) revealed the results of the 2014 edition of its MBA applicant survey. Since 2009, AIGAC’s MBA Applicant Survey has gathered and summarized the perspective of MBA applicants on the admissions process, helping member admissions consultants and business schools gain insights into applicant perceptions of each stage of the admissions process, from tools they first use to research programs and the reasons that they select programs to career and salary expectations. Many consultants and admissions officers consider it an extremely reliable read on the pulse of the graduate business education space.

Filed in: Business School
How to Make the Switch from Engineering to Business School

How to Make the Switch from Engineering to Business School

Having graduated from a top engineering school, I know the vernacular is different in the tech world.  Often, engineers wake up one day after graduation and several years on the job realizing they have been speaking this tech language exclusively and now that they have the inkling to go back to business school, they fear failure in the admissions process for lack of “socialization” with the real world such as their fellow applicants from other industries may have.

How to Get a Hiring Advantage after Business School

How to Get a Hiring Advantage after Business School

Recently, a client and I were discussing their approach to the Harvard Business School application process.  This client was very excited about HBS and like many other applicants, saw himself as the perfect fit for Harvard for a variety of very good reasons.

As we began diving into his backstory and working together to organize an approach, it also came out that this person wanted to work for one of the top five investment banks after business school.  It seems part of his logic in applying to Harvard and assessing his fit for their program was that it would “look good” to these top investment banks who must of course think highly of HBS and enjoy hiring their freshly minted MBAs.

Stanford GSB Application Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

Stanford GSB Application Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

Stanford GSB has released its MBA admissions essays and deadlines for the Class of 2017. Last year Stanford resisted the urge to cut an essay (while many other top MBA programs did reduce their number of required essays), but this year is another story: Stanford now only requires two essays, including its famous “What matters most to you, and why?” question. Plus, the Stanford GSB admissions team made a curious change to what we thought was one of last year’s most interesting application essays.

First Mover Advantage: Start Your MBA Applications Early & Improve Your Chances of Admission into Top Business Schools

First Mover Advantage: Start Your MBA Applications Early & Improve Your Chances of Admission into Top Business Schools

At Veritas Prep headquarters, spring is definitely one of our favorite times of the year!  Not just because of the warmer weather, but also because our admissions consulting clients are letting us know what top-tier MBA programs they’re hearing from and sharing their success stories with us.

Harvard Business School Admissions Essays & Deadlines for 2014-2015

Harvard Business School Admissions Essays & Deadlines for 2014-2015

And just like that, the new MBA admissions season is starting to happen. Harvard Business School has announced its application essay prompt and Round 1 deadline for 2014-2015. Last year we made much of the Great Essay Slimdown, in which many business schools cut their number of required essays or reduced word counts. Harvard went down to just one essay last year (and made it optional!) meaning that there wasn’t much more slimming down the school could do, short of eliminating the essay altogether.

International Business Experience Could Make All the Difference in Your MBA Applications

International Business Experience Could Make All the Difference in Your MBA Applications

There’s no arguing that the world is getting smaller.  Technology has finally connected just about any remote part of the globe which until just a few years ago, still operated in many cases as if in the dark ages.  Even in the remotest villages of Africa, we now find cell phones and smart phones.  Where we once had to fly to client locations to meet “face to face,” we can now meet remotely via telepresence, which has become as easy as finding a mobile connection.

Find Out Why Right Now is the Best Time for You to Apply to Business School

Find Out Why Right Now is the Best Time for You to Apply to Business School

We get lots of questions from applicants about the best time to return to business school.  While this is certainly an individual assessment, and one size does not fit all, from an admissions perspective, there are good seasons and bad seasons to maximize your odds of acceptance.

Six years ago, during a time none of us will soon forget, the air was let out of the economy.  A similar rushing sound was also heard in the country’s top business schools, but it was the sound of people rushing in.  Applications peaked the next year as everyone ran to hide from old man recession for two years in hopes the job market would come back while they were getting smarter and checking the graduate school box.

3 Ways to Get Into the Stanford GSB MSx Program

3 Ways to Get Into the Stanford GSB MSx Program

The Stanford MSx program, previously known as the Stanford Sloan Master’s Program, is the one-year, full time Masters of Science program for experienced professionals.  Ok, so the program is not really new, but is experiencing a huge uptick in interest from business school applicants.

Stanford’s traditional MBA program is the only one in the world with an acceptance rate and average work experience both in the single digits; so experienced applicants have started flocking to this alternative option in droves.  Make no mistake, though, “alternative” does not mean “easy!”

Do You Need More Work Experience before Submitting a Strong Business School Application?

Do You Need More Work Experience before Submitting a Strong Business School Application?

Often clients are confused when trying to determine if they have gathered enough work experience to return to business school.  Certainly it takes a few laps around the proverbial block to gather enough real world knowledge to be valuable in a classroom discussion—this is why B-schools require you to come with work experience.

Can I Get Accepted into Harvard, Stanford, or Wharton with a 650 GMAT Score?

Can I Get Accepted into Harvard, Stanford, or Wharton with a 650 GMAT Score?

Yes you can.

But it becomes statistically less and less likely every year.  One thing is certain:  there are a lot of folks out there who have cracked the code on the formidable GMAT exam and scores continue to rise to stratospheric levels, pushing the average up of course.  Most schools publish the percentages of each level of the GMAT who gain admission every year, but these three schools, often considered the “holy grail” of b-schools, are exceptions.

How to Write the Best Essay for Your MBA Applications

How to Write the Best Essay for Your MBA Applications

Having graduated from a top MBA program as a non-native English speaker, I still remember being quite worried about the MBA application, fearing that my English was not sophisticated enough. So I focused on improving my writing skills by doing just that – writing.

Now as a Veritas Prep School Specialist, I have found working with my clients that there are a few common essay-writing pitfalls.

When Should I Go Back to Business School?

When Should I Go Back to Business School?

Business school is perhaps the most unique of all graduate education opportunities, in part because it is the only one which requires substantial work experience to qualify.  Think about it—law school, medical school, and every Master’s degree you can pursue, all take students directly out of their undergraduate experience, essentially offering a chance to continue your education without ever working in the “real world.”  Business schools on the other hand, rarely (if ever anymore) take students directly out of undergrad, and look instead for applicants who have taken a lap or two around the proverbial block.

Filed in: Business School
U.S. News MBA Rankings for 2015

U.S. News MBA Rankings for 2015

U.S. News & World Report, which maintains arguably the most influential graduate school rankings in the world, has just released its new business school rankings for 2015. It’s far too easy for applicants to get caught up in the rankings, and to obsess over the fact that a school dropped three spots from one year to the next, but reality is that MBA rankings matter. They influence how recruiters look at schools, they serve as a signal to applicants and affect what caliber of applicants each school receives, and they give you an idea of where you stand relative to your target schools. You should never end your business school selection process with the rankings, but the reality is that you will probably start the process by seeing where schools sit in the MBA rankings.

Filed in: MBA Rankings
How to Navigate the Waitlist for MBA Admission

How to Navigate the Waitlist for MBA Admission

Earlier this week, we talked about what it means to be on the waitlist. Today, we’ll go into more detail on what you can do if you’re on the waitlist. Despite the name “waitlist,” there are several things you can do besides simply wait for your dream school to call.  From a strategic standpoint, sitting in a state of limbo gives you the opportunity to improve your profile or status as a candidate, and such improvements can and should be communicated to the admissions committees.

What It Means to Be on the Waitlist for MBA Admission

What It Means to Be on the Waitlist for MBA Admission

This time of year, many applicants find themselves stuck in the waitlist process at one or more schools, which can be a very slow and painful waiting period.   Not only are you competing for fewer and fewer seats, you are doing so against everyone on the waitlist all the way back from round one as well as any fresh, new applicants from the final rounds.

Should I Apply for My MBA in Round 3 or Wait Until Round 1?

Should I Apply for My MBA in Round 3 or Wait Until Round 1?

Round three is commonly thought of as the most competitive round, where applicants vie for the few remaining seats in coveted programs along with some of the most highly qualified candidates of the season.  Because these well qualified candidates know they will be desirable to the adcoms, they often wait until the last possible minute, since there appears to be a correlation between highly successful business achievers and the lack of free time on their schedules to complete applications.

3 Reasons to Wait Until Round 1 to Apply for Your MBA

3 Reasons to Wait Until Round 1 to Apply for Your MBA

Most of the top U.S. business schools accept students in two or three rounds. Applicants are not always sure in which round to apply, and when they make a decision, they usually underestimate the time it takes to put together a solid application.

Applying for an MBA is not like applying for a job. A well-rounded application not only needs quantitative data such as undergraduate grades and test scores, but also needs an accurate depiction of your qualitative traits, which are usually shown through your essays, letters of recommendation, CV and extracurricular activities.

The Symbiosis Between Education and Income

The Symbiosis Between Education and Income

It’s no secret that earning a college degree or a graduate degree can lead to a higher-paying job. But do you realize just how big the difference can be? We’ve broken it down to show you what kinds of jobs — and how much pay — you can expect when you earn a degree. You should never choose a major or a line of work solely for the pay, but keep these stats in mind if you’re wondering whether or not you should go back to school.

How to Overcome the Disadvantages of Applying to Business School in Round 3

How to Overcome the Disadvantages of Applying to Business School in Round 3

If you have decided you will take the plunge and apply to school in Round three, there are a few things you need to know.  First and foremost, you must realize the odds of admission go dramatically down in round three because of the relatively few number of slots that remain.  This is simple mathematics—the lower the seat count, the more competitive it is to get one of them—think of it as musical chairs with way more people than chairs.

Take the 2014 MBA Applicant Survey and Win $500!

Take the 2014 MBA Applicant Survey and Win $500!

It’s that time of year again! The Association of International Graduate Admissions Consultants (AIGAC) has launched the 2014 edition of its business school applicant survey. If you are applying to business school now, or have recently been admitted and plan on starting an MBA program in 2014, you could win $500 just for spending 5 minutes completing this survey!

Applying for Your MBA in the 3rd Round? Check out Our Round 3 Application Guarantee!

Applying for Your MBA in the 3rd Round? Check out Our Round 3 Application Guarantee!

We find that many applicants consider applying for top MBA programs in the 3rd or final round, but hesitate because they feel there is absolutely no chance for them to be admitted. It’s true that 90% or more of the spots in an MBA class are already taken, but Veritas Prep has a proven track record of success for successful Round 3 applications.

How to Select the Right MBA Program for You

How to Select the Right MBA Program for You

Just as the quality of a stage production or musical performance depends on all of the work that went into months and months of rehearsal before the performance, how successful you are in your business school applications depends a great deal on all of the work you do before you ever start drafting an essay. Remember that your application is a mere snapshot of who you are (and how well you can present yourself) at one point in time. How well that message will be received will partly depend on whether you’re targeting the right schools, and how well MBA admissions officers at those schools see a good fit between you and their institution. And this comes down to knowing how to select the right MBA program for you.

Is Applying to Business School in Round 3 a Good Idea?

Is Applying to Business School in Round 3 a Good Idea?

The final round of the business school application process is often referred to as “no-man’s land,” with scarce slots still left for b-school hopefuls and time literally running out.  Still, there are many who end up applying in round three, some who simply put off the process because they were busy in the fall, or perhaps others who were rejected in round one and are trying one last time.   But is it a good idea?

Average GMAT Scores for the Top 30 MBA Programs

Average GMAT Scores for the Top 30 MBA Programs

There are a number of criteria by which you can rank MBA programs: Average starting salary after graduation, average undergrad GPA of incoming students, acceptance rate, student satisfaction, and academic reputation among peer schools are all measures that publications use to try to sort the schools and create a definitive ranking.

Filed in: GMAT, MBA Rankings
How Much Time Should You Spend on Your MBA Applications?

How Much Time Should You Spend on Your MBA Applications?

Inevitably there are applicants each season who decide rather late in the game to apply to business school.  While it’s hard to believe for those who spend months or even years preparing themselves specifically for a run at top schools, due to career focus or simple procrastination, some applicants find themselves with a short window before due dates pass.