Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Reflections on the application process thus far

Hello all. As I relax at home on a wonderful Tuesday night, I thought I'd take some time to reflect on the application process and lift thus far. I'm still a bit tired from this weekend, and hyped up from all the news, so pardon me if I'm a bit delirious.

1) THE WHARTON INTERVIEW: Wow, let me tell you. This was a huge relief off my shoulders. To be honest. although I did not tell anyone, I was internally getting nervous about this one. My application had gone to "Complete" the day or two after the deadline. Last week when people starting getting interviews (including those who had gone to "Complete" many days after me) I thought my fate was sealed. Alas, the interview Gods were looking out for me and I got my invite today via email. This is especially great because I was starting to think that Philly and NYC schools had something against me! (Long story ...) I am really, really looking forward to seeing the campus, meeting with students and checking out a wonderful school!

2) 9 APPS IN 3 WEEKS: I've realized that even though reviewing essays for 3 months works for some people, it does not work for me. I started my MBA journey in late October, and took the GMAT in early November. I then started my apps in mid-late December and submitted Round 2. This was fast, agreed, but it seems to have worked out. I'm proud to have a number of interviews, and to have confirmed that for me, fast and furious is the way to do things. I do my best work under time pressure!

3) DUKE - TO INTERVIEW OR NOT?: I am now confused as to whether or not to interview at Duke. At the beginning of January, I scheduled my interview at Duke (in Durham) at the end of February. I do love Duke, but am unsure if it is in the same league as Wharton, Harvard and Chicago. However, I am nervous that if I do not interview at Duke and don't get in anywhere else that I will regret it. The main reasons I don't want to interivew is because of the time I will have to take time off work, the travel, and the prep. Any ideas?

4) ADVICE FOR ROSS/CHICAGO/WHARTON: So I think I have gotten some great feedback for my upcoming Harvard interview (a HUGE thank you for everyone who has commented and helped out). I now have Ross, Chicago and Wharton coming up as well. I would love to know the experiences of others and hear any advice on what the interviewers focused on and any special tips.

5) THANK YOU: Thanks to everyone who has been supportive and helpful thus far! I am looking forward to starting my interview journey and posting my experiences to help others as well! Yay!

Ok, that is my novel for the night. I still feel like I can't breathe right and a little like I'm going to throw up because I am so excited/nervous. Yay! Have a great day! :)


udybaby said...

Dont be nervous! Just treat every interview like it was the one place you really want to end up at. You would rather juggle admit decisions than interviews alone :)
Congrats and all the best!!

rungee582 said...

Advice for the Ross Interview - I think this was the easiest one I had... it was w/ a 2nd year student and they only had my resume to work from (I chose to interview at the school b/c I had never been there). Everything was straightforward. The only thing that was different than other interviews was that we spoke more about my EC's than in any of my other interviews.

Advice for Wharton's interview - have plenty of leadership/teamwork examples, of course. They only have your resume. I was also asked what I planned to do at the school, gave a few examples, and the interview then asked me for more. It would have been a panic moment if I had not had a lot more to say, but I took the opportunity to show much research I had done and how enthusiastic I was about the school.

I used the wiki on clearadmit and the interview database on accepted.com to get a feel for questions others have been asked and I found that helpful to spot trends. Seems like a distant memory now and it was only 1-2 months ago! Also read the blogs of the R1 applicants who reported out on their interviews to see what they were asked and what to expect. Of course, since we're dealing w/ humans, there is always a degree of the unknown!

Well, those are my 2 cents on Ross and Wharton (I didn't apply to Chi). Hope that is somewhat helpful. Best of luck!

Sudha said...

Hey, congrats on all those interviews. Fast work for sure :)

About the Duke interview, i'd say go ahead and interview. When you know u want to start MBA, the only thing to do at this point is go all out and complete the remaining app process at all schools.

Worrying about which school to go to is the next step in the process. cross bridges when u get there and all that ;)

Iday said...

reg all interviews:

check out experiences of previous interviews from accepted.com and clearadmit wiki. that will give u a "feel" of the interviews in general and also the kind of the questions asked. have a lot of school specific info (dig into their websites), particularly those that are related to ur plans in and after school. practice speaking about u and ur experiences at length. thought this seems the simplest thing to do, it is important to make this interesting :)

since an interview is another of those "pressure situations" i think u will do ur best with ur usual "fast and furious way" :) (if u dont understand this - check ur second point) ;)

Juggler said...

Let me give you a single piece of advice that applies to all your interviews:

Learn how to guide the interview. If you manage to do this you can make the whole interview very conversational. This will help you to do much more than answer the standard questions, you will be able to project quite a bit of your personality apart from just your MBA candidacy. It also helps to not prepare too much, so that you don't sound very studied and rehearsed

All the Best!

Inblue said...

Duke :I'd say interivew. Even if you do not want to go out there. As sudha says, whether to go there or not is a later worry.

For all interviews :
1. Research about your interviewer ( if he/she is an alumus). That way you can have an idea on how to direct the interview. Rest all Juggler says.

2. Be ready for some questions and try to learn more about every school from them - will help later when you have the pain of plethora of admits ;)

I used the clearamit wiki and the accepted.com interivew database. Most interviwes will be conversationsal. If you have a real good interviwer do not expect anything more than Tell me about yourself, why mba? what after MBA ? and some interesting small talks. That's the purpose.

Go by everything that the Wharton adcom blog post. Its very nice.

ALL THE BEST for interviews.

HairTwirler said...

Congrats and good luck! I found all my interviews followed similar patterns, mainly because I was prepared AND effectively guided the conversation. I would recommend having a leadership or managerial anecdote prepared OR if you do not have much managerial experience to prepare an anecdote on a challenging work situation. You don't have to prepare a speech about the event of course, but reviewing the facts and defining the lessons before you go into the interview is quite helpful. Only a few of my schools had this question on the application but almost all asked it in the interview.

Generally- relax, be yourself, and know WHY you want to go to the specific school. Choose something specific. It's common advice but it is a VERY standard question.

Achilles said...

Congrats for all the interview invites....All the Best, convert all of those:)

Btw i m also a B school aspirant for Fall 2008 session, right now doing the searching stuff and preparing for GMAT