Sasha played professional rugby for nearly six years in Europe before landing a job with a privately-held renewable energy company in the U.S. With a 710 GMAT score and a 3.63 GPA from Rutgers Business School, this 32-year-old program manager would now like to take the next step in his career with an MBA.
A first-generation college graduate, he’s aiming high, even though he is not from either a feeder undergraduate school or a feeder employer to an elite program and he would not matriculate until he’s 33 years old, outside the 26-to-28-year-old sweet spot for the most highly selective business schools. His targets: Harvard Business School, Wharton, the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business, Northwestern Kellogg School of Management, and Yale School of Management. His post-MBA goal is to become a consultant with MBB, ultimately to return to Eastern Europe to help the region in some way.
The big question: Can he overcome those obvious downsides in his application by playing up the fact that he is a first-gen candidate who played professional sports and has racked up two promotions at a company that has employed him for five and one-half years? His raw scores, after all, are slightly below average for Harvard and Wharton. Should he retake the GMAT? Should he apply to a wider range of business schools?
In this episode of Friday’s With Sandy, HBSGuru.com founder Sandy Kreisberg assesses his odds at the top schools and offers some valuable advice and pointed questions to sharpen Sasha’s candidacy.
If you would like to participate in a future Fridays With Sandy webinar, you can contact Sandy and P&Q Founder John A Byrne here.
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