Interviewing At Chicago Booth and Wharton

by MBA Over 30 on

I can finally see some light at the end of this very long tunnel of pre-MBA exam prep, test-taking, app and essay writing, interviewing, waiting, worrying, and just plain ‘ole stress.

So here’s the status of my round 1 applications going into the weekend before Thanksgiving (alphabetically):

Chicago – invited to interview; interview complete

HBS – dinged without an interview

MIT – won’t send interview invites until around December

Stanford – nothing yet

Wharton – invited to interview; interview complete

After being invited to interview at Wharton and Booth within a day of one another, I ‘ve completed both interviews within the past 5 days. It’s been a bit of a whirlwind but I am generally pleased with the results how things have gone (the actual result won’t be apparent until I get final decisions).

Chicago Booth Interview Recap

Chicago Booth gives you two main interview options: to interview on campus with the admissions committee (which includes 2nd year MBA students) or to interview in or near your city with a Booth alum (where available). Living in Los Angeles makes alums from virtually any school that I would ever apply to locally available.

While I would love to visit each school that I’m submitting to, neither finances nor time will permit such a tour. I opt for local interviews whenever possible to be judicious with my finite time and financial resources.

I applied for my Booth interview right away and was paired with an alumnus within 24-48 hours, just as their admissions website promised; +1.  The night prior to my scheduled interview, I got a buddy of mine who is a recent JD/MBA graduate of and alumni interviewer for The University of Chicago to give me a mock interview.

My friend took it kind of easy on me, asking some basic behavioral questions coupled with the standard goals/why MBA/why now/why Booth questions. I wish he had been a bit tougher.

My interviewer chose a fairly laid back meeting place. I blocked out my schedule for that day and made sure to arrive with about a 30 minute lead on our appointment–half of which I burned up finding parking blocks away and then walking to the establishment.

Not a Clear Read

While very polite, my interviewer was not easy to read. They were also quite skilled at the job at hand. I got lots of behavioral questions peppered with interpersonal and “get to know you” probes that came in the midst of deceivingly random small talk as we navigated the meeting place.

I was comfortable with what was being asked of me and did not trip up or get stumped by any of the questions. I did, however, receive some constructive feedback on one of them. It was good feedback.  I also felt that the feedback came more from a spirit of genuine affinity than a “gotcha” sort of thing; yet, you never really know what someone is thinking.

While I generally feel that I did well in the interview, even the slightest hiccup can cast doubts in such a competitive, subjective process as this. I guess we’ll find out how “constructive” that feedback was come mid-December.

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  • Josh

    Do you mind elaborating on the nature of feedback you received during the booth interview; in other words, I’m more interested in what the interviewer said to you. Can you elaborate on that. I’m not interested in the specifics of the interview or what question you were asked. My interest is in regard to what the interviewer shared with you. If you think you can elaborate on that without compromising any confidentiality, I would be quite interested in hearing you do so.

  • http://www.mbaover30.com/ MBA Over 30

    Hey Josh, I wouldn’t be able to talk about the feedback without doing just that.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001984920680 Maria Smith

    Good post about MBA interview

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