Dinged for HBS Round 2

by Mark Wong on February 16, 2011 · 3 comments

in Admissions

A lot of people are getting their HBS application decisions today, and I guess I ended up in the majority.  ;)  Getting this decision wasn’t that shocking because I knew decisions were already going out for a while, and today was the last day for them to finalize their decision.  Based on that alone, I think I really only had a shot at the wait list.

The email popped into my inbox and I expected to find the actual decision in the text.  However, it simply gave me instructions to log back into my HBS application account and check to see what the decision was.  Another bad sign.  By the time I logged in I was expecting a boiler plate message about why I wasn’t given an interview and for once in this application process, I was completely unsurprised.

I definitely had the stats to justify applying to the school, but I often wondered if I really fit the profile of a Harvard MBA.  Maybe my accomplishments weren’t impressive enough?  Who knows.  It’s tough to stand out when you’re competing against nearly 10,000 other applicants.  While I knew going in that getting an admit from Harvard was going to be a longshot, each ding still inflicts some emotional pain on your psyche.  It’s not just the $250 bucks (I think HBS was more than that) you need to spend to apply, but the countless hours writing the essays, getting them reviewed, asking for recommendations, filling out the online form, etc.

Anyway, the admissions “season” is still not over for me.  I’ll try to keep my head up while prepping for the interviews I do have coming up.  I guess another way to look at the ROI scenario above is that, you can apply to as many schools as you want, but you can only attend one.  Even if you get into all of your schools, only one can be the school you actually “capitalize” on.

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