Cornell Johnson | Mr. Healthcare Corporate Development
GMAT 740, GPA 3.5
Chicago Booth | Mr. Mexican Central Banker
GMAT 730, GPA 95.8/100 (1st in class)
MIT Sloan | Ms. Digital Manufacturing To Tech Innovator
GMAT 720, GPA 3.4
Harvard | Mr. Tech Risk
GMAT 750, GPA 3.6
Chicago Booth | Mr. Whitecoat Businessman
GMAT 740, GPA Equivalent to 3(Wes) and 3.4(scholaro)
Columbia | Mr. Developing Social Enterprises
GMAT 750, GPA 3.75
IU Kelley | Mr. Advertising Guy
GMAT 650, GPA 3.5
Wharton | Ms. Strategy & Marketing Roles
GMAT 750, GPA 9.66/10
Rice Jones | Mr. Tech Firm Product Manager
GRE 320, GPA 2.7
Yale | Mr. Education Management
GMAT 730, GPA 7.797/10
Columbia | Mr. Neptune
GMAT 750, GPA 3.65
Darden | Ms. Education Management
GRE 331, GPA 9.284/10
Columbia | Mr. Confused Consultant
GMAT 710, GPA 3.2
Yale | Mr. Lawyer Turned Consultant
GMAT 730, GPA 3.7
Harvard | Ms. 2+2 Trader
GMAT 770, GPA 3.9
Harvard | Mr Big 4 To IB
GRE 317, GPA 4.04/5.00
Stanford GSB | Ms. Engineer In Finance – Deferred MBA
GRE 332, GPA 3.94
Chicago Booth | Mr. Corporate Development
GMAT 740, GPA 3.2
UCLA Anderson | Mr. Second Chance In The US
GMAT 760, GPA 2.3
Harvard | Ms. Big 4 M&A Manager
GMAT 750, GPA 2:1 (Upper second-class honours, UK)
Harvard | Mr. Harvard 2+2, Chances?
GMAT 740, GPA 3.2
Harvard | Mr. Billion Dollar Startup
GRE 309, GPA 6.75/10
Harvard | Mr. Comeback Kid
GMAT 770, GPA 2.8
Wharton | Ms. Negotiator
GMAT 720, GPA 7.9/10
Duke Fuqua | Mr. IB Back Office To Front Office/Consulting
GMAT 640, GPA 2.8
Harvard | Mr. Marine Pilot
GMAT 750, GPA 3.98
MIT Sloan | Ms. Physician
GRE 307, GPA 3.3

Getting Accepted: The Best of Jon Fuller


What’s the most important factor for getting into business school? Take your pick. Your GMAT reflects your academic prowess. Your career progression reveals your potential. And your essays display your spirit and self-awareness. Ultimately, when the big decision rolls around, some adcoms factor in another criterion:

“Are you someone who I still want to hang out with after finishing up a class project at 2 AM?”

That question was posed to a Poets&Quants reader by Jon Fuller, a Clear Admit consultant who spent four years as the Senior Associate Director of Admissions at the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business. While the advice is colorful, it conveys a hard truth in admissions. Schools, like employers, “hire” students whom they like. They may identify with your background and admire your accomplishments. You may even check every box on their wish list. If they can’t picture you as a go-between who can partner with and inspire your peers, you’ll probably end up waitlisted (at best).

Since partnering with Poets&Quants in 2014, Fuller has guided hundreds of readers, offering, advice, options, and empathy for those looking to enter business school. For Fuller, there are no shortcuts to earning an acceptance letter. The process involves mastering key fundamentals: Planning, prudence, practice, and, perseverance. And it requires knowing who you are, what you want…and why.

“A common pitfall,” Fuller tells one reader, “is to not really be clear on why you want to go to a particular program besides the fact that it’s an “Ivy League” school, an M7, a top X program, etc., so be sure that you can fluently articulate why you want to go to any particular school beyond those sorts of superficial dimensions. In the meantime, tackle the GMAT, keep up with being a strong performer at work, and hopefully you’ll be ready to put together quality applications in a few months.”

Jon Fuller of Clear Admit

Jon Fuller of Clear Admit

In recent months, Fuller has helped readers grapple with issues where answers always clear-cut. How do you blunt bad choices that can’t be undone? What can I do to stand out from 3,000 other applicants? What can I do right now to improve my chances? Indeed, with first round deadlines looming in the coming months, many applicants are feeling overwhelmed and unprepared. To them, Fuller counsels being humble and patient enough to act when the time is right.

“I get how this all might seem a bit daunting,” Fuller writes, “so my last piece of advice is to lay out something of a roadmap for yourself for the next few years. Milestones can include prepping for and taking the GMAT, completing some classes, achieving near-term professional goals (new job, or if that’s not possible, secure a promotion or something), researching programs, etc. The overall list can seem huge, but breaking it down into pieces might make it feel more manageable.”

Looking for direction when it comes to your admissions questions? Click on the topics below to read some of Jon’s recent strategies for increasing your shot at being accepted into business school.

(To send Jon a question, click here. Please share your own advice for our readers in the comments below).

Minimizing Damage From Your Past 

Strategies For Impressing Adcoms 

Value of Undergraduate School and Employer Prestige

Navigating Career Change


Round Three Pitfalls

Recommendation Letters

Pursuing Additional Education Before An MBA

Strategies For Older Candidates

Other Questions

To read the first two parts of our series with Jon, click on the links below.