Your Chances Of Getting Into An Elite Business School


Mr. Military Intelligence


  • 700 GMAT
  • 4.0 GPA
  • Valedictorian at West Point
  • Work experience as a military officer who has led more than 100 soldiers in cyber operations.
  • Extracurricular involvement as captain of his fencing team which went on to capture the national championship; volunteer in Big Brothers and the Special Olympics
  • Goal: To return to the military in a leadership position
  • “What other schools should I consider”

Odds of Success:

Harvard: 60%+

Stanford: 50%+

Wharton: 60%+

Virginia: 70+

Sandy’s Analysis: As a rule, if you are the valedictorian of an Ivy or near-Ivy, that is something business schools respect. This guy is going to get into Harvard Business School. The only way he wouldn’t get in is if he blows the interview.

If you changed a few things on this guy, it would be questionable. If he wasn’t the valedictorian at West Point and if he didn’t have a 700 GMAT and wasn’t captain of the fencing team, this would be a completely different story. What he has going for him is the valedictorian. That is the trump card.

I’m not sure I know what cyber operations is. What i imagine is a bunch of guys in a dark room looking at computers. That is not the iconic leadership that you would expect to see from a military guy.

This guy also says he wants to spend his career in the military. I don’t know how many military applicants say that. I think you want to say you want to work for McKinsey and Goldman because the business schools understand that.

This guy might also feel comfortable at the Darden School in Virginia, but I always say, prestige counts. His odds are so good at Harvard and Stanford, there’s no reason for him to go somewhere else.

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