Mr. Power Generation
- 740 GMAT (50Q, 40V, 8 IR)
- 3.0 GPA
- Undergraduate degree in mechanical engineering from a Big Ten University
- Work experience includes 40 months at matriculation for General Electric Co. in power generation in a customer facing role, managing maintenance projects with revenue of up to $35 million
- Extracurricular involvement as the president of a competitive athletic club while in school; very little EC’s since graduation
- “I am pretty involved in Free Masonry but I don’t know if that would even help my application”
- Goal: To move into management consulting in the short-term and to later move into corporate strategy
- “Do you think I should take a course or two this summer to remove GPA doubts?”
- 25-year-old white male at matriculation
Odds of Success:
Dartmouth: 30% to 40%
Virginia: 40% to 50%
Cornell: 40% to 50%
Duke: 40% to 50%
Carnegie Mellon: 50%
Sandy’s Analysis: To answer your question, yes, take some courses this summer, not so much to remove GPA doubts but to just undergo some post-grad hazing that schools like, since their ideal applicant is anxious, pliant, well-credentialed, conventional, and employable. You are all that but taking the extra courses will show them you can walk the extra mile–on your knees.
You are almost the mirror image of the woman who works at Deloitte and is the first profile in this batch. She has a strong GPA and lowish GMAT, and you have weak GPA (3.0) and strong GMAT (740). Interesting hypothetical as to which one of you I would prefer to be (controlling for gender). Hmmmm, probably her because while 680 is a low-ish GMAT it is not as low as aÂ 3.0 GPA, even in mechanical engineering.Â Another reason to take some courses.
Your work at General Electric in power generation is a strong suit, made stronger by the comments in the press about GE getting back to its core businesses as part of its sale of GE Capital, which in years past was often the tail wagging the dog. Also, power generation at GE just sounds so basic and “business-y.” Schools have a soft spot for such applicants, both on the merits and as an easy way to rebuff criticism that they have sold out to the finance and consulting industries.
“Target schools: Tepper, Tuck, Darden, Johnson, Fuqua, may roll the dice and apply to Wharton as well.”
You seem like the Tuck type and if not, find out what that is, and pretend to be so when you visit and get interviewed. ‘Fake it, til you make it,’ to paraphrase Harvard Business School’s TED superstar Amy Cuddy.
I think your chances at Tepper, Darden Johnson and Fuqua are solid, you are “meat and potatoes” at those places. With a 3.5 you’d be in walking backwards. You will need a note from your mother about why your 3.0 is not a good predictor of MBA course success.
By the way, what is the reason?
Wharton is an acceptable Hail Mary pass. They may blink at the 3.0 in light of GE and 740.
As to your note, “I am pretty involved in Free Masonry . . .”
Friend, I got no views about Free Masonry, but I’ve seen the ads on TV and I am capable of thinking like an adcom chick. I would not mention it. The upside is small and the downside is potentially significant.
“Fraternal order” is not something adcoms respect after college, and something they in fact only tolerate during college.