The 25 Most Popular MBA Watch Applicants

It’s been a month since MBA Watch debuted at Poets&Quants. In that time, more than 90,000 different users have participated in the social platform for MBA applicants which has racked up well over a quarter of a million views.

That’s not surprising. After all, it’s a safe place to share your profile and get immediate expert advice on how to improve your odds of admission to the top MBA programs. In just four weeks, nearly 300 current MBA candidates have shared their details on MBA Watch.

Altogether, it’s a revealing portrait of who applies to the top business schools and how they’re currently faring on waitlists, rejections and admits. The profiles show a remarkably diverse and highly accomplished group of candidates. Would-be applicants can gain a sense of the kind of competition they are facing at each of the leading business schools in the world.


The expert commentary–provided by consultants at mbaMission, Stratus Admissions Consulting, The MBA Exchange, HBS Guru Sandy Kreisberg, and P&Q Founder John A. Byrne–has included lots of insightful opinions on what admission directors are looking for in an ideal admit. Our experts are suggesting ways that candidates can improve their chances, along with much-needed tough love at times. And they are also providing realistic odds of getting into their first-choice school.

All the top schools are well represented. It will surprise few that Harvard Business School and Stanford Graduate School of Business are the first choice schools of the largest number of MBA Watch players. Roughly 14% of the applicants say that either HBS or the GSB is the No. 1 MBA program they’ve targeted for admission. Wharton is next, with nearly 10% of the candidates making the school their first choice, followed by Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management (8%), Dartmouth Tuck (5%), MIT Sloan, Chicago Booth, and Duke Fuqua (4.6% each).

The most popular international school is INSEAD, followed by London Business School, HEC Paris, Cambridge Judge, and SDA Bocconi.


The odds-on favorite candidates currently at Harvard, Stanford, and Wharton? Our experts (you can search by school to see expert and community odds) give Ms. Software Accessibility, a college senior applying to Harvard’s 2+2 deferred admissions program, the best chance for an admit at HBS. The 22-year-old Duke University undergrad is majoring in computer science and has a perfect 4.0 grade point average and a 770 GMAT. She also has a three-month internship as a software engineering intern at a global tech company on her resume. Super impressive. Even though HBS admits just 12% of its applicants, MBA Watch experts give her a 70% chance of admission.

The favorite of experts at Stanford GSB, meantime, is also a young woman. Ms. Test Engineer has nearly five years of experience at two Fortune 500 companies. Originally from Austin, Texas, the 26-year-old woman now lives and works in Seattle. And her stats are in nosebleed territory: A 750 GMAT with a 3.74 GPA in mechanical engineering from the University of Texas. While Stanford GSB boasts the most selective prestige MBA program in the world, with an admit rate of under 7%, our experts give her a 45% chance of getting in.

For the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, the candidate attracting the best odds right now is yet another woman. Ms. General Motors is a systems analyst at a Fortune Top 10 company, with five years of work experience, a 330 GRE score and a 3.2 in computer science from Northwestern University. Her goal: To pivot to product marketing management at a FAANG-level firm, continuing her woman-in-tech representation work. “I want to sell apps to real people, not just fellow geeks,” she says. Our experts say she has a 53% chance of getting accepted into Wharton’s MBA program.


So which profiles are getting the most attention? At the very top of the list is a candidate who reflects a frequent challenge applicants face when applying to a highly selective school with a low-grade point average. Viewed by more than 1,200 P&Q users, Mr. Low GPA Product Manager may sport a 3.1 GPA but it is in a difficult subject–computer science–at a public Ivy–UCLA. More importantly, perhaps, he offsets his transcript with a jumbo GMAT score of 780. An aspiring venture capitalist and current product manager at a tech company in San Francisco, he’s hoping to get into Harvard Business School. What do the experts and the community think? You’ll have to find out.

Most Popular 25 Candidates On MBA Watch

Candidate First Choice GMAT/GRE GPA Major College
1. Mr. Low GPA Product Manager Harvard 780 3.1 Computer Science UCLA
2. Mr. Investment Manager Harvard 750 4.0 Economics Univesity College London
3. Mr. AI in Asia Harvard 760 3.25 Engineering University of Toronto
4. Mr. Jumbo GMAT INSEAD 770 3.7 Humanities Top 10 Australia
5. Ms. MD MBA MIT Sloan 307 3.3 Biology HKUST
6. Ms. Indian Quant Harvard 750 7.54/10 Industrial Engineering IIT Kharagpur
7. Ms. Sales & Trading Harvard 730 3.5 Finance University of Mumbai
8. Mr. M7 Aspirant Chicago Booth 760 3.79 Commerce Christ University
9. Mr. Marine Corps Stanford 600 3.9 Fire Administration Liberty University
10. Ms. ELS Duke Fuqua 318 3.8 Romance Languanges New York University
11. Ms Teaching To Tech Virginia Darden 326 3.47 Creative Writing UNC-Wilmington
12. Mr. Asian Veteran Chicago Booth 315 3.14 Urban Planning Arizona State
13. Mr. Low GPA Duke Fuqua 323 2.4 International Relations West Point Academy
14. Ms. Mechanical Engineering Columbia 610 3.72 Mechanical Engineering Savitribal Phule Pune
15. Mr. 770 Dreamer Northwestern Kellogg 770 8.77/10 Engineering Gujarat Tech University
16. Mr. Corporate Monster Wharton 750 9.12/10 Mechanical Engineering Anna University
17. Mr. Naval Submariner Wharton 760 3.83 Physics U.S. Naval Academy
18. Mr. Small Nation Applicant Duke Fuqua 700 3.3 International Relations National Univ. of Mongolia
19. Mr. Indian Consultant INSEAD 720 3.0 Engineering IIT Kharagpur
20. Mr. Project Management Yale SOM 310 3.3 General Studies University of Louisiana
21. Mr. Food & Beverage Wharton 720 3.75 Economics Georgia Institute of Technology
22. Mr. Long Shot NYU Stern 303 2.75 Finance CUNY-Baruch
23. Ms. Scientist Businesswoman Emory Goizueta 328 3.5 Biology/Physics Texas-Austin
24. Mr. Federal Civilian Dartmouth Tuck 780 3.4 Mechanical Engineering University of California
25. Mr. JD to MBA Stanford 326 3.01 Sociology Wake Forest


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