You’d be hard pressed to find a more unusual candidate for a full-time elite MBA program.
Jose is 33, having graduated with his undergraduate degree last year with a 2.9 GPA. But while his age and his grades might raise red flags in admission circles, he also has a compelling story of a hard-working, scrappy young professional.
A first generation college grad, he immigrated to the U.S. from Guatemala at the age of nine when his family moved to Los Angeles. On his SAT, he scored in the top 1% of all test takers, earning him a spot at the highly selective Cal Poly. But after a year and one-half as a computer science major, he dropped out to help his family.
Jose ended up taking a job as a bank teller and quickly worked his way up to a personal banker. He joined Molina Healthcare in what was originally a part-time position and climbed his way to a senior corporate finance analyst at the Fortune 500 health care provider. After a seven-year stint with Molina, he landed a plum job as a senior business consultants with EY.
And along the way, he returned to college at Cal State in Long Beach after a ten-year gap to earn his degree in business administration and information systems. He helps to mentor Latino professionals. He has run fundraising events and organized supply shipments to a non-profit that helps underserved diabetics in rural Guatemala, and he
has personally delivered food and supplies to children in his home country as well.
Now he has set his sights on a highly ranked MBA. His target schools: Harvard, Stanford, UCLA, USC or UC-Irvine. What are his chances and how can he tell his story in such a way to overcome his age and his grades?
In this episode of Friday’s With Sandy, HBSGuru.com Founder Sandy Kreisberg and Poets&Quants Editor John A. Byrne assess his odds of admission and offer some critical advice. Sandy being Sandy also provides a dose of tough love to Jose.
If you would like to participate in a future Fridays With Sandy webinar, you can contact Sandy and John here.
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