Current Army Captain from rural Alabama. I am currently the Battalion’s Operations Manager, responsible for the management of 30 Blackhawk helicopters and training of 370 Soldiers. I hope to leverage my leadership and team-building experience and apply both to a future private-sector career.
Undergrad School: United States Military Academy
Undergrad Major: Law and Legal Studies
Age: 27, Ethnicity: White
Extracurriculars: President of West Point Glee Club
Title: Operations Manager
Industry: Government / Military
Length of Employment: 1 yr
Title: Platoon Leader
Length of Employment: 2 yrs
1) Graduated West Point with academic honors. 2) Rated #1 platoon leader in my battalion; ranked in the top 5% of my cohort. 3) As a junior officer, I was entrusted to lead my battalion’s disaster response team in Miami and the Bahamas during the aftermath of Hurricane Dorian.
My goal is to attend a top MBA program in order to continue to develop my leadership skill set and professional network. I would like to work as a consultant for a few years to better determine which industry is the right fit for me. My long term career goals include moving back to my hometown in Alabama and starting my own business.
Target School: Harvard
Considering: MIT Sloan, Tuck, Darden, McCombs School of Business
Hi Mr. Blackhawk Pilot, this is Kristen from MBA Prep School. First, thank you for your service. Military applicants are typically reviewed favorably by MBA programs, as they naturally tend to exhibit the kind of leadership skills that the programs value. It sounds like you are no exception with the platoon leadership you had and your role now in training and oversight of equipment. I also love your academic success at the Academy and your strong GMAT score. One thing you will want to be mindful of is painting a picture of your accomplishments for the Admissions Committee. While you can quantify success through rankings, it will be more powerful to illustrate WHAT you did to earn those honors. It is especially important to showcase …
Hi Mr. Blackhawk Pilot, this is Kristen from MBA Prep School. First, thank you for your service. Military applicants are typically reviewed favorably by MBA programs, as they naturally tend to exhibit the kind of leadership skills that the programs value. It sounds like you are no exception with the platoon leadership you had and your role now in training and oversight of equipment. I also love your academic success at the Academy and your strong GMAT score. One thing you will want to be mindful of is painting a picture of your accomplishments for the Admissions Committee. While you can quantify success through rankings, it will be more powerful to illustrate WHAT you did to earn those honors. It is especially important to showcase the scope and scale of your work in a way a civilian would understand. Lastly, really nail down those post-MBA goals. Consulting is common path for military MBAs looking for broad exposure to the business world, but you still need to make a case for why it is a good fit for you. How does it align with your strengths and the things you enjoy doing in the Army and what industries would you like more exposure to? Same goes for your future entrepreneurial target; do you have an idea of what kind of business you might want to start or is there a problem or need in your hometown you seek to address? Putting some details behind these will go a long way. HBS is a reach for anyone in my opinion so I want to keep my odds a bit more conservative for you there, but I think you have a great chance at the other schools you are considering. Please reach out if you would like to chat further!
Hi Mr. Blackhawk Pilot, Kristen from MBA Prep School here. First, thank you for your service. MBA programs look very favorably upon military applicants, as their jobs naturally tend to require strong leadership skills. You sound like no exception, given your platoon leadership, training role, and oversight of equipment. I also love your strong academic performance at the Academy and on the GMAT. One thing I find particularly important for military applicants is really helping the Admissions Committee understand their work. Be sure to illustrate the scope and scale of what you have done and the impact you have had. Sometimes this can be quantified through performance ratings as you mention, but the Committee would much rather have you paint a picture of the situations you were in and how you rose to the occasion. It can also be tough to showcase an ability to question the status quo in such a hierarchical, lock-step position; if you can do that, you will set yourself apart. Lastly, make sure you know why consulting is the right path for you. It’s a very common one for military MBAs looking to get broad exposure to the business world, but it helps if you showcase how consulting aligns with your current strengths and with industries you want to explore. The same goes for your eventual goal to become an entrepreneur; if you can lay out more details around what that might look like, that will help. HBS is always a reach school in my opinion so I’m keeping my odds for you more conservative there, but I really like your chances at the other programs you are considering.
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