A Lonely MBA Thanksgiving

by Mark Wong on November 24, 2010 · 0 comments

in Admissions

I’ve already blown off a couple of social obligations.  And I felt bad about turning down close friends so I could spend time working on my business school apps.  But given the time crunch I’m in, and the number of schools I intend to apply to, I don’t think I have a choice.  I need to put my head down and make significant progress these next four days.

Somehow I have a really bad feeling that my Christmas post is going to be along the same lines.  :(  However, I’ve promised myself that I will take time off in January when all my apps are done and visit my family then.  And hey, hopefully by then, they will have reduced the number of “aggressive pat downs.”

My Thanksgiving plans are as follows:

  • Finish my resume
  • Finish my Haas app
  • Finish 2 essays for Stanford
  • Finish 2 essays for Wharton
  • Complete my research on Stanford
  • Complete my research on Wharton
  • Preview all of my application forms
  • Prepare my Recommenders for my remaining apps
  • Refresh Contact List, prepare intro emails: EC, PC, VM
  • Find more Essay Review contacts (family members?)
  • Catch up on sleep
  • Clean my apartment

Maybe I’ll grab a turkey sandwich.  :P  Oh the sacrifices we make…

I’m nearly finished with my Haas app.  I’ve realized it’s a good idea to preview your application form and not leave this task just for the last week before the deadline.  For example, Stanford requires you to calculate your class rank.  My undergraduate university never provided a class rank with its grading.  I had to call my school to get this figure.  Haas requires you to calculate your third and fourth year GPA.  Not a difficult thing to do if you have your transcript, but it still takes time.  I think I’ll spend Thanksgiving making sure I can at least fill out all the information on all of my apps.

Last night I spoke to a contact at Wharton.  He went there a while ago and didn’t have current knowledge about the school, but he was still able to give me some really good pointers.  He also suggested that I hire an admissions consultant.  That one piece of advice made me think long and hard about whether or not it was worth it.  People throw out numbers such as “half the people who get admitted used consultants,” but there are no numbers to back it up.  Even if there were, I’d probably still be skeptical.

I’ve decided that I’m still probably not going to get an admissions consultant.  However, I might purchase some essay review time from MBA Prep School.  Their site seems to offer consulting services at a less personal level, but at a much more reasonable price.  Given that I already spent $1,000 for a GMAT prep course, “premium prep” as I like to call it, I feel I can pull more of the weight myself this time around.

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