Application Stories That Don’t Get Talked About

For every Roger Federer, there are tens of thousands of tennis players whose games and faces go unrecognized. They don’t get talked about.

For MBA admissions too, tales of glories receive the most eyeballs on GMAT Club and BEAT the GMAT forums, relegating stories of outright disappointment (all dings) and underperformance (admission to not-so-stellar schools) to quick obscurity.

These stories of disappointment get some exposure, but what escapes our attention is that many of these applicants had the potential to avoid an all-ding scenario or get into a better school.

Does Recommender’s English Affect Your Recommendation?

Proficiency (or lack of it) of your recommender in written English has little impact on how adcom evaluates your recommendation. After all, they are not judging your recommender’s communication skills.

As far as recommendations are concerned, adcoms primarily focus on content.

Probably, the best insights in this regard come from Stanford GSB. In response to the following two questions, they say:

Non-Traditional Applicant? Here’s How You Can Strengthen Your Application

If you are a non-traditional applicant to MBA programs, you’re an attractive bet to B-schools, on the first glance at least. However, when they dig deep into your profile, they may have some concerns, which aren’t uncommon among non-traditional applicants.

If you take proactive steps to allay these concerns, you can be – even to your surprise – a strong applicant.

30+ and applying to MBA programs

Are You 30+? MBA Programs May Have 3 Concerns on Your Application

Average age of the class at HBS is 27 years. At Columbia, it’s 28. That’s usually the range for most U.S. B-schools: 27-28 years. Some schools, however, don’t provide average age of their class; instead they provide average work experience, which usually is 5 years (to name a few: Wharton, UCLA, and MIT – 5, Stern – 4.5, and Stanford, a relative outlier – 4). The average work experience too points toward a similar average age.

Though the average age of most programs is not too far from 30, B-schools do have some specific concerns about the candidature of applicants falling in 30+ age bracket, though very few air it openly. (There is nothing sacrosanct about 30; it’s just a metaphor for older applicants.)