July, 2009 | Apphelp blog

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Best advise from experts for b school applicants

Writing an Application for B-SCHOOL is the hardest part of the application process. To make it a bit simpler we have some advice from the B-School experts, on what do they expect in an application.

A.keith Vaighn of Marshall School of Business, University of South California, says “The applicants should just be their selves and follow directions. Schools are not trying to trick them, but are trying to know who they are.”

Monika Gray, University of Georgetown advises applicants to be true to who they are. She says “The biggest mistake the candidates make when preparing an application is to try to figure out who we are trying to preview and who we think is the best candidate and leave out lots of important things about themselves.”

According to her, most students fail to understand that B-schools are looking for all-rounded people who are interesting and that doesn’t have to relate to something that seems business school related. “When we ask students about their hobbies and interests , they say following the stock market. It is fine to have such a hobby, if it really is, but if your hobby is playing socker, jogging or mountain climbing that’s perfectly fine to admit, because most people find their creative solutions outside their work space. So it’s important to us that we have students who do interesting things and not solely focus on whatever they are interested in doing professionally, as it helps them balance themselves. So , be honest about who you are and develop that personal profile and not just assume that everything has to go specifically matching your career.”

According to Richard G . Miller, Carey Business School, John Hopkins University. “Make sure you turn the interview into you being the interviewer. Ask the right question.”

Gaynor Jones, Freeman school of Business, Tulane University says “Keep it simple. It is important for the candidate to put across basics about themselves. When we look at an applicant or an application comes in , we try to get an idea about who the applicant is . We don’t want to read the same thing and boring stuff. Make it different and interesting, yet complete and simple.”
Alice Hiang, Hult International Business school agrees and says,” Try to use application to let yourself come through. We get hundreds of applications , those who let their personal story and unique characteristics come through, are the ones who are selected”.
Glenns Burman, Rutger Business school, comments ” When it comes to an application, you have to treat it as an opportunity to get in through the door. It has to represent you to the best of your abilities. Understand that you have one shot to make 1st impression. Make sure its complete, make sure its on time or even early, especially when applying for some finantial aid or scholarship. One should understand that its more than just a piece of paper, it is you. I do not know the person, I can come to who you are at that point is through that application.

How to handle a B school admission Interview : MBA interview preparation

Interview is a critical part of business school application process. This is your opportunity to bring your application to life and connect with the admission committee in a personal way.

Interviews are normally squeezed within 30 min slots. So, you should be able to articulate ideas clearly and concisely. Show evidence of your:

  • Strong communication skills
  • Intellectual curiosity
  • Social skills
  • Self confidence
  • Teamwork
  • Adaptability

The better prepared applicants remain undaunted and answer all questions precisely providing examples and backgrounds to illustrate the responses.

You should impress the interviewer by:

1) Highlighting your unique qualities
2) Expressing your knowledge about the programme

You need to practice and practice. Practice with your friends or family. But if you can get mock interviews conducted by professionals who can actually provide constructive feedback.

Organize information about yourself so that you are not repetitive. E.g. most interviewers start by asking “Tell me about yourself”. This is perfect to plant seeds of your strengths and steer the interview in areas where you are well prepared.

At atleast 2 or 3 points in the interview you need to create a wow moment and impress your interviewer from your responses.

When asked questions like “How will your friends describe you”, present new information and don’t repeat the earlier said stuff. These kind of questions are your chances to again create a wow moment or jump back on track if your interview is not going well.

So, all ready to face the interview committee.

Top Asian B schools – ISB, NUS, HKUST, Nanyang

Many applicants who contact us and enroll for services want to apply to Asian B schools. The main attributes that makes MBA from Asian schools a popular choice are:
1) Lesser expensive MBA < 25 lacs expense
2) India and other parts of Asia are growing economically. So, there are better career prospects.
3) Asian B schools have shorter duration MBA programs : 12 or 16 months

The top B schools in the Asian region are :
AIM manila
INSEAD Singapore

Out of these schools ISB, NUS, HKUST and Nanyang are the top choices whereas other are less preferred because IIMA and C have a minimum requirement of 5 years of work ex, CEIBS is in China and not many aspirants want to go there because of language and food problems. AIM manila was a good B school some years ago but its brand has withered away.

In our opinion, if you want to stay in India in the longer run and are not that finicky about MBA from likes of Harvard, Wharton etc only, then the Asian B schools are a good bet.

Apphelp- India's top MBA admission consulting service

Apphelp- India's top MBA admission consulting service


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