Harvard | Mr. Captain Mishra
GMAT 760, GPA 4.0
Stanford GSB | Ms. Lady Programmer
GRE 331, GPA 2.9
Kellogg | Mr. Engineer To PM
GMAT 710, GPA 3.9
Yale | Mr. Tambourine Man
GMAT 740, GPA 3.3
Harvard | Ms. Eternal Optimism
GMAT 720, GPA 4.0 (First Class Honours)
McCombs School of Business | Mr. CRE
GMAT 625, GPA 3.4
Ross | Mr. Double Eagle
GMAT 740, GPA 3.77
Wharton | Mr. Rural Ed To International Business
GRE 329, GPA 3.6
IU Kelley | Mr. Jiu-Jitsu Account Admin
GMAT 500, GPA 3.23
Wharton | Mr. Sales From Law School
GMAT 700, GPA 11/20
Columbia | Mr. URM Artillery Officer
GRE 317, GPA 3.65
Stanford GSB | Ms. Eyebrows Say It All
GRE 299, GPA 8.2/10
Harvard | Mr. Air Force Seeking Feedback
GRE 329, GPA 3.2
Harvard | Mr. UHNW Family Office
GMAT 730, GPA 4.0
Harvard | Mr. Certain Government Guy
GMAT 720, GPA 3.3
Stanford GSB | Mr. Hopeful B School Investment Analyst
GRE 334, GPA 4.0
Berkeley Haas | Mr. Stuck Consultant
GMAT 760, GPA 3.6
MIT Sloan | Mr. Mechanical Engineer W/ CFA Level 2
GMAT 760, GPA 3.83/4.0 WES Conversion
Wharton | Mr. Asset Manager – Research Associate
GMAT 730, GPA 3.6
Kellogg | Mr. Community Involvement
GMAT 600, GPA 3.2
Chicago Booth | Mr. International Banker
GMAT 700, GPA 3.4
MIT Sloan | Mr. South East Asian Product Manager
GMAT 720, GPA 3.6
Harvard | Ms. Hollywood To Healthcare
GMAT 730, GPA 2.5
Stanford GSB | Ms. Investor To Fintech
GMAT 750, GPA 3.8
Kellogg | Mr. Structural Engineer
GMAT 680, GPA 3.2
Darden | Mr. Anxious One
GRE 323, GPA 3.85
Ross | Mr. Saudi Engineer
GRE 312, GPA 3.48

Enter The ‘Rank-Climbers’: The Newest MBA Applicants Of The Pandemic

Schools that have stretched the admissions cycle by two months or more have effectively created a COVID-19 round for candidates who had no intention of applying now

ONE ADMISSIONS RULE CHANGE: IT WON’T HURT TO APPLY IF YOU ARE UNEMPLOYED

Another unusual twist due to the turmoil, adds Abraham. “We also may see scholarships awarded much later than usual because of scholarship recipients trading up and releasing funds that had been previously awarded to someone else,” she says.

Meantime, admission directors are looking at today’s candidates differently as evidenced by some of the flexibility they’ve shown on test scores and application deadlines. As Kate Smith, assistant director of admissions at Kellogg, said at a webinar yesterday sponsored by mbaMission: “This might be a time when our typical years of experience change…We are opening the aperture to think differently about the classes we build because we are going to see what happens in this cycle.”

Several others recall the years of the Great Recession when they looked at unemployed applicants differently. To lose a job and then apply to business school often unfurls a red flag of sorts on an application. Not now. “We saw applications from unemployed and furloughed applicants in the Great Recession,” says Bruce DelMonico, admissions director at Yale SOM, in the same webinar. “We adjusted how we looked at work back then. In Round 3 and going forward we will be similarly sensitive to the forces at play.”

‘LITTLE TO LOSE BY SEEING IF YOU CAN GET INTO A HIGHER-RANKED PROGRAM’

Amanda Carlson, assistant dean of admissions at Columbia Business School, recalled that she had lost her job during the 2001 recession. “I was in my 20s, living in New York and had what I thought was the greatest job in the world but the economy fell into shambles,” she told applicants during the webinar. In August of 2001, little more than four months after a promotion, she was laidoff. “It feels so personal. You feel like the world is caving in on you. The world was a really, really scary place just like it is now. It has nothing to do with performance, your work or your value.”

At the time, Carlson says she was going part-time to graduate school and used her credit card down to buy seven more classes. Things turned around and in early 2002, she was given a role in CBS’ admissions office. “I know it feels hard and personal but you don’t know what good things are going to come around the corner,” says Carlson, who adds that a layoff in this environment would not be considered a negative on an application now.

So who should take advantage of the changes? “If admitted clients are thinking of trading up,” adds Abraham, “we advise them to consider their goals and the advantages and costs of going to a higher-ranked program. If they have no scholarship money from their accepting schools, it really makes sense for them to try for that “better” program. If they have a meaningful scholarship offer, they usually want to weigh the pros and cons a little more carefully, but if they have dream programs that they didn’t apply to and that are still accepting applications, they have little to lose by seeing if they can get in. We are also encouraging our clients who were planning to apply next cycle, especially round 1, to consider applying for this year. And several are doing exactly that.”

DON’T MISS: THE NEW COVID-19 MBA ADMISSIONS ROUND or LIVE UPDATES: HOW COVID-19 IS IMPACTING THE BUSINESS SCHOOLS

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