Harvard | Ms. Athlete Entrepreneur
GMAT 750, GPA 3.3
Chicago Booth | Mr. Guy From Taiwan
GRE 326, GPA 3.3
Duke Fuqua | Mr. Enlisted Undergrad
GRE 315, GPA 3.75
Darden | Mr. Stock Up
GMAT 700, GPA 3.3
Darden | Mr. Education Consulting
GRE 326, GPA 3.58
Tepper | Mr. Leadership Developement
GMAT 740, GPA 3.77
Columbia | Mr. NYC Native
GMAT 710, GPA 3.8
Harvard | Ms. Ambitious Hippie
GRE 329, GPA 3.9
Stanford GSB | Mr. Classic Candidate
GMAT 760, GPA 3.9
Stanford GSB | Mr. Unrealistic Ambitions
GMAT 710, GPA 2.0
Stanford GSB | Mr. Equal Opportunity
GMAT 760, GPA 4.0
Tuck | Mr. Over-Experienced
GRE 330, GPA 3.0
HEC Paris | Mr. Indian Entrepreneur
GMAT 690, GPA 2.1
Chicago Booth | Mr. Community Uplift
GMAT 780, GPA 2.6
UCLA Anderson | Mr. Worldwide
GMAT 730, GPA 3.1
Wharton | Mr. LatAm Indian Trader
GMAT 720, GPA 3.5
Wharton | Mr. MBB to PE
GMAT 740, GPA 3.98
Harvard | Mr. Soldier Boy
GMAT 720, GPA 3.72
Harvard | Mr. MBB Aspirant
GMAT 780, GPA 3.7
Harvard | Ms. Finance
GMAT 760, GPA 3.48
Cornell Johnson | Mr. Angel Investor
GMAT 700, GPA 3.20
Rice Jones | Mr. ToastMasters Treasurer
GMAT 730, GPA 3.7
Kellogg | Mr. MBB Private Equity
GMAT TBD (target 720+), GPA 4.0
Said Business School | Ms. Creative Planner
GMAT 690, GPA 3.81 / 5.0
Stanford GSB | Mr. Wedding Music Business
GMAT 710, GPA 3.7
Harvard | Mr. Big 4 Auditor
GMAT 740, GPA 3.55
Harvard | Mr. Software PE
GMAT 760, GPA 3.45

It’s MBA Winter Break: ‘Get Busy!’

Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management at Cornell University

Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management at Cornell University

A multiple-choice question: This winter break, an exhausted MBA student should:

A. Sleep in, play lots of computer games, catch up on a favorite TV series, and try to replenish energies sapped to near-extinction by schoolwork, club duties, and recruiting.

B. Suck it up and take advantage of the free time – woohoo, no school! – to connect with old friends, fight with family members, and drink during the daytime.

C. Fly away to a warm place – after all, it’s winter, and furthermore, this may be the last chance for a tropical sojourn before a new job consumes your life and soul.

D. Get cracking on the job search, lazybones!

Answer: D, but don’t give up entirely on A, B, and C.

Cynthia Saunders-Cheatham, Cornell Johnson

Cynthia Saunders-Cheatham, Cornell Johnson

At least that’s the kind of answer you’d get from Cynthia Saunders-Cheatham, director of the career center at the Cornell University Johnson School of Management. Winter break provides a perfect opportunity for some career planning and forging of inroads into target companies and industries, Saunders-Cheatham says. However, among MBA candidates, such a use of the holiday is far from universal. “A lot of them are not leveraging their time in that way,” Saunders-Cheatham says. “This is a time to really map out a strategy for what you want to do with your off-campus search.”

A SEASON OF PLENTY – TO DO

While it’s true that many businesspeople in students’ networking sights may be out of the office for the holidays, some of those people stick it out till closer to Christmas, and may be reachable, she says. And most potential company contacts will be back behind their desks quite some time before students return to school. Touching base with company and industry representatives, particularly recruiters, during or around the holidays to arrange informational interviews can yield benefits when just-in-time positions are to be filled, she says. “You learn more about the opportunities out there and how you might position yourself for those opportunities, and when those opportunities come around in the spring, you’ll be front of mind with the recruiters and the hiring managers,” she says.