The one with the MIT application

I know, long time no see… but July has been a very busy month: studying for the GMAT, writing essays and all dose days on-call at the hospital.

Good news is I have almost finished my MIT application. Of course there is one last essay that I have to polish, and I have somethings still to complete on the online application form, but the hardest part of the job is done.

It has been as difficult a process as I had been told. Difficult in that it´s a lot of effort and time that you have to put in to finally come with a satisfactory, compelling essay… let alone three. First you have to fin the time, then try to remain focused when you are hearing all those people outside having fun around the pool, try to think of the stories you want to tell and how… My first draft of an essay was a complete disaster, in conclusion. But with practice comes improvement. Bottom line, it requires some dedication.

I have almost completed my first two essays for MIT  and, even better, according to my recommenders, LORs are close to be ready too, so it seems I will meet the september 23rd deadline. Now I have to decide what to do for the optional essay/presentation/video. I want to take my time before deciding what to do and what “format” to use, because I would really like for it to stand out, or at the very least, being something that is not so typical. That kind of freedom is both exciting and daunting.

With MIT so advanced, I plan to move to Tuck´s application this week, since I would like to have it “almost ready” also by the third week of the month. I like to think that the process will be smoother this time, with the experience I have already gained.

Then, of course, I have to balance everything so I can get some quality time to keep preparing  the GMAT. I will tell you how it goes on a different post, when I have alreayd taken the first prep exam.

Enjoy your summer…those of you who are not applying to BSchool!







Round 1 is underway

MBA 2014-2015 application season has started.

Last week I begun drafting my first essays (it was hard and painful, but beginnings are never easy), and so my application process officially started.

Finally, I have decided that I will apply to four schools: Tuck, Kellogg, Duke and MIT. Nevertheless, it is true that the fact that Kellogg only offers loans for international students with a co-signor, American or otherwise, is something that could still change my decision in the end, because. As much as I would like to be optimistic about scholarships and alternative funding, I want to remain realistic and keep all the options open, therefore, this is a disadvantage. In any case, I love Kellogg, so I will most likely apply anyway.

Tuck and Duke, on the other hand are sure choices, as any frequent reader of this blog should know by now. MIT has been the last to make the list, taking the place of Haas. This has been a difficult decision, because Haas is a top 10 school, with an almost-unbeatable location and very strong in Healthcare, so it may appear as an obvious choice. However, MIT is just as amazing, also very strong in healthcare (they offer a certificate now), being Boston one of the main hubs for pharma and biotech, and with a very social and collaborative community. Besides, for personal reasons, I am now more inclined to choose East Coast over West Coast. That has tipped the scales in favour of MIT.

There is another school that could join that group. This seems to be the week in which I have to go back on some things I had previously stated, as I will most likely retake the GMAT, and now I am also considering HBS an option after ruling it out very early during the process of selecting schools. Why? First of all, because in spite all of I had considered is still true  (huge class, only case-method…), recently I attended a presentation they hosted in Madrid, and there I got to meet several former and current students, and was amazed by how humble they are and the things they told us about HBS, its culture, campus… Besides, I have had the opportunity to share some mails with  members of the healthcare club and definitely stroke me as a very active community and full of opportunities. Awesome to put it in one word. Therefore, HBS could be in the mix and, in that case, improving my GMAT a little bit would definitely help me, for average score for HBS is around 730.

As I said, I have already started writing, and I decided to start with MIT application. IT´s two essays, one of them quite innovate, as you have to write your own recommendation, pretending to be your supervisor. That will require careful thought. I hope both can be ready by the first 10 days of july, if not in their final version, at least in a very advanced one.  Let´s not forget I have to prepare for the GMAT too, so mixing all that with my job at the hospital, there is no doubt I will have to manage my free time very wisely.

I will tell you how they are coming along.

Enjoy your summer!



The importance of starting early

It is that time of the year again. Soon I will be drafting essays, pursuing my recommenders and trying to get all the documents I will need to submit my applications next fall ready.

Luckily, I realized I wanted to do an MBA kind of soon, over a year ago, and started researching about GMAT, reading other applicants blogs and attending events hosted by several business schools. Everything so I could be ready to apply in fall 2014.

But I have realized that is not the common thing, at least not as common as I would have expected. One of the things that stroke me as surprising when meeting other fellow applicants last year was the fact that many of them hadn´t taken GMAT or TOEFL or decided to which schools they wanted to apply by mid-summer (and they wanted to apply in R1).

Of course, it is completely possible to achieve success with little time to prepare, and an early start does not guarantee a letter of admission. Nevertheless, I truly believe that anyone who intends to apply to a top business school would benefit from starting as soon as posible, for it is a very long and demanding process filled with uncertainty, and there are so many things that are out of our control. At least, every prospective applicant should get over with GMAT as soon as he realizes an MBA is what he wants to do, as GMAT is one f the main soures of stress when it comes to business school applications. That would avoid situations like not having enough time to retake if the score is not that good. I´ve seen that happening several times.

Moreover, considering the number os essays that every applicant has to write and the work that each one of them may require before being ready, it is advisable to always give yourself some extra time. Not all of as are as fast when it comes to select the best stories and putting them on paper on a compelling way. I think that there is already enough pressure without having to also rush your applications. Besides, all of us have other things to do aside from writing essays… don´t we?

Thus, I plan to start drafting my first essays some time around mid-june. I will most likely apply to four schools in the first round and considering the amount of work I will be facing this summer, the sooner the better. That will give me time to work carefully in each essay and application, and keep reseraching schools (you never know and R2 is around the corner).

I will tell you how it goes.