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Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 11:59:05 AM)
Hello! My name is Linda Abraham. I am the founder of Accepted.com and the moderator of today’s chat. First, I want to welcome you all to Accepted.com’s Carnegie Mellon Tepper Admissions Chat today, and congratulate you for taking the time to learn more about CMU Tepper. To make a sound decision and to get accepted you need to know as much as you can about the schools you are applying to. Being here today allows you to ask the experts about this outstanding business school. I also want to welcome Laurie Stewart, Carnegie Mellon's Director of MBA Admissions; Dr. Ken Keeley, Executive Director of Tepper's Career Opportunities Center; and Jaymin Patel, a second-year student at Tepper’s MBA Program. Thank you for joining us today.
LaurieStewartTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 11:59:10 AM)
Hi Linda and everyone!
JayminPatelTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 11:59:13 AM)
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 11:59:18 AM)
Jaymin, could you provide a short bio covering where you are from, where and what you studied as an undergrad, the work you did before coming to Tepper, your concentration at Tepper, your summer internship, and your post-MBA goals?
JayminPatelTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 11:59:33 AM)
LaurieStewartTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 11:59:57 AM)
Thanks everyone for joining today!
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 12:00:24 PM)
For all of you: What’s new at Tepper?
LaurieStewartTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:01:19 PM)
There are so many things happening at Tepper this fall! New student clubs are forming—for example the Energy and Veterans Clubs. Several case competitions—Tepper students recently won an MBA investment competition hosted by UNC. There are lots of great events/speakers on campus this fall. In fact, Tepper has a growing presence on I-TunesU and You Tube where you can find videos and podcasts from various faculty and speakers and a new Tepper video featuring current Tepper MBAs.
JayminPatelTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:01:30 PM)
I am originally from Chicago, IL. I received my Bachelors in Industrial Engineering from Youngstown State and worked in Operations and Logistics with General Mills prior to Tepper. I am focusing on 'strategy' and 'entrepreneurship in organizations', and interned with the management consulting firm Booz & Co. this summer. I just signed two weeks ago and will be joining them full-time in September.
RS (Dec 4, 2008 12:01:47 PM)
Laurie: What resources are offered by Tepper for students interested in entrepreneurship?
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 12:02:12 PM)
sudhir (Dec 4, 2008 12:02:26 PM)
Hi Ken. How do you think the Finance placements would be after the global downturn? Any news on your placements?
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 12:02:54 PM)
Jaymin, What do you view as Tepper's strengths?
KenKeeleyTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:04:17 PM)
Sudhir, good question. Our students who interned in financial services over the summer did very well. However those who came back without an offer from their preferred employer are facing a VERY tough market. I expect it will be a bit better for intern candidates as internships serve as a "pipeline" for full-time recruiting.
JayminPatelTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:04:30 PM)
RS, the best part about the Donald H. Jones Center for Entrepreneurship is that it is widely renowned, and gives you access to real-life entrepreneurs and VC's who regularly come to teach at Tepper. It is a fantastic way to expand your network and meet the movers and shakers in the industry. Outside of Silicon Valley, SW Pennsylvania has one of the highest amounts of funding for start-ups - especially in high-tech, biotechnology, and medical devices.
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 12:04:39 PM)
Ken, how is recruiting going this year? Are there fewer companies recruiting on campus this year due to the market and economy? Has there been a decrease/increase in interviews scheduled?
LaurieStewartTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:05:08 PM)
RS: We have a terrific entrepreneurship center--great faculty--a track within the MBA program--lots of electives. Many of our students/alumni go on to start companies. Tepper students have won the 'Moot Corp' business plan competition two out of three years recently. You can check out the Entrepreneurship website for more details.
jenny (Dec 4, 2008 12:05:12 PM)
Laurie: Hello. What percentage of the applicants for Round 1 are interviewed and what percentage of those interviewed are accepted?
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 12:05:27 PM)
Jaymin, what do you like best at CMU? What would you like to see improved?
KenKeeleyTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:06:30 PM)
Linda, in a presentation I did for current students yesterday, I was able to reveal that the number of schedules in Autumn 2008 was actually several higher than 2007. That was the good news. The bad news is that the # of schedules doesn't count. It is the # of students receiving offers that means something to all involved, and that is down.
mjma (Dec 4, 2008 12:06:35 PM)
Ken: As a follow up to Sudhir's question - is there an uptick in placements in Corp Fin or Corporate Development in industry vs. IB positions in years past?
KenKeeleyTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:07:21 PM)
Linda, we compared our numbers to other leading business schools in North America, and we are very competitive, but a tough job market remains for all students still seeking.
LaurieStewartTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:07:21 PM)
Jenny--thanks for the question. We do interview as many applicants as we can (the majority) and ultimately, everyone who is admitted has been interviewed. Sometimes candidates are invited for interviews pretty quickly after submitting their applications, but others are invited later--up until their decision is released.
maxy (Dec 4, 2008 12:07:24 PM)
Hi Laurie, Are all the Round 1 interviews done? How much weight is given to interviews in the whole admission process? Is it a make or break kind of thing?
JayminPatelTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:07:29 PM)
Linda, Tepper Strengths - The #1 strength is the size. The small size has proven to be so important in exposing me to opportunities I never even thought I would experience in B-school. The strong relationships with key recruiters, the access to administrators to start new things or make changes, and the fact that all your professors know your name, and you know ALL of your classmates truly differentiates it from any other top program. Further, CMU's campus is full of top schools - public policy, engineering, computer science, performing arts - just imagine the interesting people you meet and classes you can take!
sudhir (Dec 4, 2008 12:07:31 PM)
Ken, how do you look at international students and what do you think about the international student loans with a possible US cosigner after all the major banks backed out? What is Tepper doing in this regard?
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 12:07:43 PM)
Jaymin: How do you like the mini-semester system? What do you see as its advantages and disadvantages?
KenKeeleyTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:08:22 PM)
Sudhir, I think the admissions folks can better help you with the financial aid/loan questions.
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 12:08:59 PM)
Ken, are there any particularly active sectors seeking MBAs?
JayminPatelTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:09:45 PM)
The Tepper strengths are what I like about Tepper's program, and most importantly the collaborative culture here. I couldn't imagine B-school any other way. As far as improvements, well all schools can improve on everything - the thing about Tepper is that the students are highly involved in the process, and often lead the change. One example is a fellow student of mine who wanted to see a CSR concentration, and with the support of administrators, was able to bring a proposal in front of the academic advisory committee in just 8 months.
LaurieStewartTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:10:15 PM)
Maxy--we're still doing interviews for Round 1 and will be continuing to do so up until we release decisions on Dec 19th. The interview is important in our evaluation process, just as all the other components are important. We consider everything about a candidate when we make our decision. We use the interview as a way to get to know more about you--and we want candidates to be comfortable asking us questions too.
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 12:10:18 PM)
Jaymin, why did you choose Tepper?
KenKeeleyTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:11:25 PM)
Mjma, it is too early to make a projection about the eventual spread of accepted offers. At the moment, more and more companies are simply "freezing" their hiring activities. If there is any "good" news in this, it is happening now, and we will most likely be over this by the time students who enter Autumn 2009 are ready to compete for internships or to graduate.
JayminPatelTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:11:49 PM)
Linda, once you take a mini-semester course, you will never want to take a 15 week course again! Mini-semesters are wonderful - every class is worth going to, and you learn a lot. It also allows you to take almost twice as many courses as some of the other top schools before the time that you interview for your summer internships. I personally don't see ANY disadvantages, but students need to realize that minis cover a lot of content, and so they have to keep up with their work!
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 12:13:19 PM)
Ken, do you have companies from abroad recruiting at Tepper? If yes, can you give us an example?
mjma (Dec 4, 2008 12:13:30 PM)
Thanks Ken, that's what I'm thinking (hoping for) as well.
JayminPatelTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:14:21 PM)
I chose Tepper for all the reasons I mentioned above - small class size, relationships with my dream companies, the strong entrepreneurship program, opportunities for dual-degrees with other top programs, etc. Additionally, I chose Tepper because I really respected the "management science" approach to business, which they invented about 50 years ago. The biggest reason is probably the fit - I visited campus, met with a LOT of students, and knew that it was the place for me. It's more than just rankings.
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 12:14:43 PM)
Jaymin, What do you enjoy the most about the extra-curricular activities?
LaurieStewartTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:14:50 PM)
Sudhir--all of our loan programs for international students require a US Citizen or Permanent Resident co-signer. We do evaluate every admitted student for merit scholarships and under the leadership of our Dean, Ken Dunn, the amount of scholarships have doubled in the past 5 years. Our merit scholarships range from partial to full-tuition (Dean's Scholarship). This year, 12 of 210 first year MBAs received Dean's Scholarships.
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 12:14:54 PM)
Great answer to my previous question, Jaymin.
MBA2011 (Dec 4, 2008 12:14:59 PM)
Laurie, Have you seen an increase in R1 applicants this year compared to last year? Are you expecting a significant rise in overall applications this year?
KenKeeleyTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:16:45 PM)
Linda, we do not get many companies from abroad that actually come to Tepper to recruit. One who has consistently come for the last several years is Deutsche (London). They also recruit here from their NYC location. We do have job postings (small numbers) sent to us from around the world - they tend to come from the multi-national companies. In addition, a number of the banks and consulting firms with international name recognition set up interviews in the US in specific cities, and our students have the opportunity to compete for those interviews.
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 12:17:39 PM)
Ken, is there anything you recommend applicants do before they arrive at Tepper to improve there chances of landing an internship or post-MBA job?
JayminPatelTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:18:34 PM)
Linda, so many choices! It' hard to say 'no', which turned out to be a great thing for me. I've been exposed to so many great opportunities and experiences by my involvement in different clubs and student organization - both within Tepper and within the entire CMU campus. Additionally, I joined a competitive bhangra (traditional Indian folk dance) team, do community service projects with my classmates, and even get to attend AMAZING speakers who come to campus (CEOs, politicians, etc). I also go to cultural events that are often subsidized by our student government (off-Broadway productions for like $10!), and of course the sporting events with my classmates: I won box seats to see the Penguins, went to the Steelers game, and many Pirates baseball games:).
LaurieStewartTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:19:18 PM)
MBA2011--we've definitely seen an increase in gmat-taking, campus visits, participation in events, requests for brochures and the like. It's really too early to tell what the total application volume will be for this year--our Round 1 volume is typically such a small part of the total and we didn't see a significant change in volume so far.
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 12:19:20 PM)
Jaymin, what are you favorite classes, professors?
sudhir (Dec 4, 2008 12:19:38 PM)
Hi Laurie, are you conducting Hub Interviews in India or Alumni interviews? I think most of the applicants prefer an in person interview as opposed to a telephone interview.
KenKeeleyTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:19:57 PM)
Linda, the key to making the most of your MBA (really any degree) studies at Tepper or any school is to develop a focus before entering. In the ideal world, students would have developed a very clear focus of their ultimate goal before entering, and begun to prepare themselves to pursue a career in that area (including initial networking).
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 12:21:53 PM)
Thanks, Ken. Are there any active sectors recruiting (and hiring) now?
LaurieStewartTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:22:04 PM)
Sudhir--we will be hosting networking/information events for Round 1 admitted applicants and Round 2 applicants with local alumni in India--but we won't be conducting interviews at that time. We do offer webcam interviews in addition to telephone--we've had really positive feedback about that option when we experimented with it last year.
JayminPatelTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:22:56 PM)
Linda, almost all of the classes I take, I love. There are so many classes I want to take, that sometimes I can't fit them all into my schedule! My favorite class by far was an entire mini-semester dedicated to Pricing Strategy with Dr. Sun. It was just amazing what we were learning in there - some really cutting edge research and innovation regarding pricing. The best part was how it overlapped with psychology, marketing, strategy, and communications. One thing that Tepper does really well is to have the coursework really intertwine with other classes, giving you many perspectives and different lenses through which you can look at a problem and find the best solution.
RS (Dec 4, 2008 12:22:57 PM)
Is it necessary for students applying to Tepper to write the TOEFL? If not, how can I get a waiver?
Junaid_S (Dec 4, 2008 12:23:00 PM)
Jaymin, how many courses do students normally take in a mini-semester? And is it required that any course must be completed within the same mini-semester?
LaurieStewartTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:24:28 PM)
RS--we only need the TOEFL if you don't already hold a degree from an institution where the language of instruction was English.
maxy (Dec 4, 2008 12:24:46 PM)
Laurie: Is there any fixed date for the Round 1 accepted candidates to send in their acceptance? Is it flexible?
JayminPatelTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:25:10 PM)
Junaid_S, good question. You start with a core of 5 classes per semester. After that, you can take as many as you like. If you continue with taking 4 per semester, you will graduate with enough credits. I personally have been balancing 6 courses per semester because of the amazing courses being offered. I don't quite understand the 2nd part of your question; could you please rephrase it?
KenKeeleyTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:25:20 PM)
Linda, most industry segments are still scheduled to conduct internship interviews which begin in January. As I look at our current bookings, they are roughly 25% lower than a year ago (approximately 77 companies versus 107 last year). Keep 2 things in mind: bookings are a moving target - they can move up and down every day. Secondly, last years # was computed at the end of the year, and we do not yet have that vantage point.
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 12:25:42 PM)
sudhir (Dec 4, 2008 12:26:41 PM)
Hi Jaymin, How analytical are the finance electives? I am interested in Fin Modeling/ Valuations.
KenKeeleyTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:27:06 PM)
One additional thought. As I said earlier, schedules don't really count. Until the companies conduct the interviews and make offers, we will not know the true health of various industry sectors. I am reasonably confident that companies will continue to fill the internship pipeline, although probably a bit more conservatively.
LaurieStewartTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:27:36 PM)
Maxy--thank you for the question. We typically ask candidates to reply to us about 6 weeks after we offer admission. If someone needs more time, we try to be as flexible as we can--especially earlier in the year. We want to make sure that everyone has time to fully explore what Tepper has to offer and we encourage everyone to attend our annual 'Welcome Weekend' for the entering class. It's fun and informational-- and a great way to meet all of your future classmates!
Kiran (Dec 4, 2008 12:27:47 PM)
Laurie, I am a Mechanical Engineer with 6 years of experience in Design/Manufacturing area. I have had limited exposure to Operations until now, though I aspire to be a product manager in the future. I understand Tepper has a strong Operations concentration. If I want to leverage my product development knowledge while obtaining an MBA, can I take Operations concentration classes and choose the MIPD [Management of Innovation and Product Development] track? Is a concentration and Track combination feasible?
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 12:28:06 PM)
JayminPatelTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:29:23 PM)
Sudhir, I don't know personally, but I have taken some broad finance courses that I can provide perspective on. First off, Tepper is known as being one the most analytical and quantitative schools in the top programs - so prepare yourself to be challenged (in a good way!). The courses I took were appropriately analytical in regard to the nature of the finance topics we covered.
maxy (Dec 4, 2008 12:29:24 PM)
Junaid_S (Dec 4, 2008 12:29:28 PM)
Jaymin, thanks. For the second part I meant can students extend a class beyond a mini to the next mini-semester. But from your response I guess the answer is 'No'.
KenKeeleyTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:29:30 PM)
By the way, the last economic recession was in 2002 &03. During 2002, 92% of our MBA internship candidates reported accepting an internship. In 2003, it was around 97%. Our goal, of course, is 100% (which we achieved the 3 most recent years).
LaurieStewartTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:29:51 PM)
Hi Kiran--that sounds like a great combination and sure, it is possible to do a Track and then a concentration in your remaining electives. Almost half of your coursework at Tepper is comprised of electives--and we offer more than 120 different ones.
Ashley (Dec 4, 2008 12:30:01 PM)
Was there a large increase in the amount of applications received this year? And if so, will that alter the amount of students accepted?
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 12:31:34 PM)
Ken, is your office currently helping recent alumni who have been laid off?
LaurieStewartTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:32:58 PM)
Ashley--we've definitely seen an increase in traffic, test-taking, visitors, brochure requests, etc--but still too early to know what our total application volume will look like this year. We're targeting a similar class size for Fall 2009--around 175.
sudhir (Dec 4, 2008 12:33:04 PM)
Hi Laurie, I am a chartered Accountant with 4 years experience in investment banking. Apart from this, we as Indian CAs have to undergo a 3-year full time Articleship as a part of our curriculum. Would Tepper consider this experience as a part of work experience?
Ashley (Dec 4, 2008 12:33:27 PM)
KenKeeleyTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:33:43 PM)
Linda, the Career Opportunities Center (COC) does provide services (for just about everything except on-campus recruiting) to alumni for life. So when folks are laid off, or just interested in making a change, our number of alumni registrants does increase. As it is a free service, it is a "no-brainer" in my book that they should turn to us for help when they want it.
LaurieStewartTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:33:55 PM)
Sudhir--we sure do. We ask candidates to provide info on all working experience since high school. We're interested in fully understanding your academic and professional profile--the path you've followed.
maxy (Dec 4, 2008 12:34:14 PM)
Laurie: Will the current financial crisis have an affect on the scholarships offered?
JayminPatelTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:34:29 PM)
Junaid_S, there are some courses that are a full semester course - these are typically outside of Tepper. Two classes within Tepper that are full semester courses are (1)Mandarin for Managers and (2)Spanish for Managers. Otherwise, yes most courses are minis and will be completed within that time frame.
sudhir (Dec 4, 2008 12:34:33 PM)
Jaymin, If I want to get into touch with a current student with similar background, how can I do it?
LaurieStewartTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:35:50 PM)
Maxy--no, we don't expect any change in the availability of scholarships this year. FYI--scholarships have doubled in the last 5 years under the leadership of our Dean, Ken Dunn.
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 12:35:54 PM)
Laurie: If you are looking at an application and the numbers and basic profile are in the ballpark for a Tepper student, what distinguishes an application that is accepted from one that is rejected?
Junaid_S (Dec 4, 2008 12:36:00 PM)
sudhir (Dec 4, 2008 12:36:12 PM)
Jaymin: Can you tell me something about the finance clubs at Tepper?
KenKeeleyTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:38:13 PM)
Sudhir, I can add a little about the clubs. A Career Opportunity Center (COC) counselor is assigned as the liaison to each of the functionally oriented clubs. The Graduate Finance Association, and the Alpha Asset Management Club, are both very active. The COC works with each of them to schedule visits to employers in NYC and Boston respectively.
maxy (Dec 4, 2008 12:38:14 PM)
Ken: What are the resources available at Tepper for career-switchers? Is it more challenging for them to get placed?
JayminPatelTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:38:16 PM)
Sudhir, you can search and contact students on our website.
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 12:38:48 PM)
Jaymin, what is the #1 take-away so far from your experience at Tepper? How are you different or how has your perspective changed as a result of your Tepper education?
KenKeeleyTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:39:49 PM)
Maxy, being a career switcher is normal in an MBA program. So since you represent the norm, everything is geared towards you. A tighter job market does put more pressure on a career switcher to be focused, and to network effectively.
Kiran (Dec 4, 2008 12:40:05 PM)
Laurie and Ken: To confirm, would I be customizing my courses in 2nd year to combine a concentration and a track? In regard to regular placements post-MBA in an operations field, I see a lot of manufacturing/product companies listed, but less than 2% of students chose an operations career post-MBA. I am curious to know the type of job offerings in an operations field post MBA.
JayminPatelTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:40:14 PM)
Sudhir, yes I can, what would you like to know? The finance clubs are extremely active at Tepper, and definitely some of the most popular. They have a lot of great events, and spend hours upon hours focusing on resume reviews, interview prep, networking tips, etc. They also bring in a lot of speakers and host training sessions with groups like "Training The Street" (TTS). I attended two of the workshops last year, and became and excel pro!
LaurieStewartTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:40:33 PM)
Linda--one way that candidates can stand out is to really, clearly show why they're interested in earning their MBA at Tepper. The essays (and interview) are the place where you really get a chance to tell your story, share your goals and why you think the Tepper school is the right place for you.
LaurieStewartTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:41:28 PM)
Kiran--yes, you can customize your elective courses to do both a track and concentration.
KenKeeleyTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:41:36 PM)
Kiran, I am happy to see someone actually looks at the statistics beyond the overall salary. My observation is that the consulting firms recruit many of our students with strong operations and technology backgrounds.
JayminPatelTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:41:43 PM)
Linda, I have definitely changed as a result of my experience here. It's hard to really state it explicitly, but it has changed the way I think about problems, how I communicate with people, the perspective I have on how different functions in a company intertwine, how I lead people, how I lead ideas, and how I drive change and be an innovator.
sudhir (Dec 4, 2008 12:41:43 PM)
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 12:41:56 PM)
Jaymin, are you taking advantage of the opportunity to enroll in classes outside Tepper at CMU?
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 12:42:19 PM)
Laurie: Is there an advantage to applying in different rounds?
JayminPatelTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:43:03 PM)
Linda: Yes, once I enrolled, I had an opportunity to pursue a dual-degree with the Heinz School of Public Policy (another top school). I applied and was accepted. I've loved the experience thus far and will be studying over the next semester at the Heinz School campus in Australia.
sudhir (Dec 4, 2008 12:43:07 PM)
Jaymin: How is the life of a student outside academics at Tepper?
Junaid_S (Dec 4, 2008 12:43:50 PM)
Ken: With the current slowdown is the competition for jobs in consulting firms up?
JayminPatelTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:45:56 PM)
Sudhir, we work hard, but boy, do we play hard! To give you some perspective, our student government hosts a Tepper Pub Crawl every Thursday night (we don't have classes on Friday). They choose a location, get us drink specials, and hundreds of us show up and blow off steam. Then, most Fridays we have Tepper B**rs in our courtyard. Students bring their partners and families (even kids!) and they all play together inside. We have a student club sponsor it, and they provide food and entertainment. For example, the South Asian Business Association and the Latin American Student Club hosted the last B**rs and we had Indian food, salsa lessons and bollywood dance lessons!
LaurieStewartTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:46:22 PM)
Linda--great question. The advantage to applying early is that you get your decision sooner! We manage our process so that there is space throughout all of the deadlines and the profile of admitted students is consistent across all of the rounds. We make the most admission offers to candidates that apply in January, simply because that is the largest group of applicants.
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 12:46:30 PM)
Jaymin, what do you wish you would have done before starting your MBA that would have made the beginning/transition easier? Did you do anything especially effective that helped you?
maxy (Dec 4, 2008 12:46:34 PM)
Laurie: Do you see a rise in the number of early-career applicants?
JayminPatelTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:48:18 PM)
Linda, the Tepper School offers a pre-summer program before orientation called QSRP (Quantitative Skills Review Program) that gets students back into the 'classroom mode' with 3 hour lectures every day reviewing calculus and other basic math principles like statistics and probability. I strongly suggest this program - especially for the social aspect of getting to know your classmates before school starts to get busy!
KenKeeleyTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:48:40 PM)
Junaid, Historically, I think firms in all industries are slow to react. As indicated above, our # of schedules this year was actually slightly higher than a year ago. It is still a bit early to have a complete picture of the offers this Autumn. I do believe there will be an impact coming down the road. Whether an industrial firm, or a service firm, one probably has some # of months of orders or contracts already in house. The key is how much new business they can sell, and when will that start happening in volume again. I read the WSJ every day, and I still do not see any consensus about when the economic conditions are thought to begin improving. Stay tuned, I guess!!
sudhir (Dec 4, 2008 12:48:46 PM)
Hi Ken: Coming from a hard core finance background (chartered Accountant) I am very interested in M&As /PE and/or hedge funds. Due to the global slowdown I am sure the companies looking for such students would be less. What do you think a student should do apart from networking to be able to move in this direction?
LaurieStewartTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:48:54 PM)
Maxy--for the past few years, about 5-10% of our entering class has been comprised of individuals with a year or less of experience, including some that join directly after completing their undergraduate degree, but we haven't seen a change in the number of these candidates this year.
Ashley (Dec 4, 2008 12:49:00 PM)
Laurie: How much emphasis is placed on post-undergraduate work experience? If students are able to somewhat "balance" that missing piece of their application with strengths in other areas, is admission still very difficult?
Junaid_S (Dec 4, 2008 12:49:43 PM)
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 12:50:46 PM)
Jaymin: Many students say that time management is one of the greatest challenges of b-school. Do you agree? If so, any tips?
JayminPatelTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:50:52 PM)
Maxy, may I add that I personally have been VERY impressed with my classmates who have <1 year of experience or who come directly from undergrad with internship experience! :)
LaurieStewartTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:51:05 PM)
Ashley--we do admit some candidates with less experience. In general, that means there is more pressure to do well in all other aspects of the application profile to be successful in the admissions process.
Junaid_S (Dec 4, 2008 12:51:13 PM)
Laurie, the notification date for R1 being Dec 19th means that candidates can expect interview call till Dec19th right? Or is that the date for completion of R1 interviews and final decisions?
Ashley (Dec 4, 2008 12:52:52 PM)
Thank you Laurie!
KenKeeleyTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:52:54 PM)
Sudhir, please check with other sources as well, but I honestly believe that very few PE shops or hedge funds looking for newly graduating MBA talent. If you are able to develop that kind of role for yourself right out of B-school, it is most likely a result of working your way through school at such a firm (perhaps working for experience rather than pay). The other way of getting in is to have a high level of expertise in an area in which those firms want to invest, but have no knowledge or expertise - e.g., nano-technology (and I just made up that example).
maxy (Dec 4, 2008 12:52:55 PM)
Thanks for your comment Jaymin. That's quite encouraging! :)
JayminPatelTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:53:23 PM)
Linda, of course it is! You're going to be changing the world, and have so many opportunities and choices to make. You need to balance class-work, job search & networking, and extra-curricular activities all while making the relationships of a lifetime. My approach was to expose myself to everything I could, and then give up on sleeping. I don't necessarily recommend that approach, but it works for some people. Just make sure you have you priorities down in your head before you start school, and learn when and how to say 'no' if you have to.
LaurieStewartTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:53:25 PM)
Junaid--thank you for the question. Candidates can be invited for interviews right up until they receive an admission decision from us!
sudhir (Dec 4, 2008 12:53:28 PM)
I know that all Business school now categorize male applicants from Indian IT backgrounds in a very, very, competitive category. Would the admission committee look differently at Indians with different backgrounds (i.e.- someone with a finance background)?
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 12:54:14 PM)
Jaymin, I guess your advice ties directly into Ken's earlier comments about focus before you get to b-school.
Kiran (Dec 4, 2008 12:54:41 PM)
Thanks Laurie and Ken. For someone like me who is keen on Product Management, and wants to combine my post undergrad experience with an MBA, what kind of opportunities can I expect? My observation so far is that manufacturing firms prefer US citizens for a lot of positions. How do you tackle the issue of internships & placements for International students, specifically in the product development arena?
Junaid_S (Dec 4, 2008 12:54:44 PM)
sudhir (Dec 4, 2008 12:55:11 PM)
JayminPatelTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:57:02 PM)
Linda, you definitely need a strong focus even as you apply. But that doesn't mean that things don't change. The best part about b-school is the exposure to different people and opportunities. So be focused, but also prepared to adjust that focus slightly if need be.
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 12:57:23 PM)
KenKeeleyTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:57:47 PM)
Kiran, there is no easy answer, and without question, it is more challenging for a student on an F1 visa to compete for work in the US than someone who is a citizen or permanent resident. I suspect it is that way across the world. That said, last year (better market of course), we had 45 full-time MBA students on an F1 visa seeking a summer internship. 40 accepted employment in the US.
JayminPatelTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:57:51 PM)
Thanks Linda - great moderating, btw!
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 12:57:57 PM)
LaurieStewartTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:58:25 PM)
Sudhir--the application pool is quite competitive no matter what your background is. Overall--we're looking for individuals with strong academic potential at Tepper, professional potential in the future, a range of personal qualities such as leadership, teamwork, work ethic (and lots more) and finally-their fit for Tepper. Candidates can really set themselves apart by doing their research about Tepper and effectively articulating their fit for Tepper in their essays and interview.
frenchie (Dec 4, 2008 12:58:56 PM)
Laurie: Hi, I know some schools allow candidates to self-report GMAT and transcripts, only requiring the originals if invited to interview. For Tepper, if I understand the requirements correctly, I have to submit the GMAT score from Pearson and the original transcripts at submission time, correct?
LaurieStewartTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 12:59:37 PM)
Frenchie--we need official GMAT score reports and this year, we're asking candidates to submit unofficial transcripts at the time of application.
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 12:59:42 PM)
Thank you again all for participating. Special thanks to Laurie, Ken, and Jaymin for joining us today.
We look forward to seeing you at future chats. On deck:
LBS December 8th
NYU Stern December 15th
MIT Sloan January 5th
USC Marshall January 7th
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Have a great day! Good luck with your applications!
KenKeeleyTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 1:00:07 PM)
Great questions all. Sorry but I have to sign off as I have another scheduled appointment.
LaurieStewartTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 1:00:09 PM)
Thanks Linda for hosting/moderating--and thanks everyone for the great questions! Good luck with your applications this year :-)
sudhir (Dec 4, 2008 1:00:24 PM)
Thanks all, thanks Linda for the opportunity.
Linda Abraham (Dec 4, 2008 1:00:31 PM)
You're most welcome.
JayminPatelTEPPER (Dec 4, 2008 1:00:48 PM)
Thank you all, and best with your future endeavors - and the application process!
Ashley (Dec 4, 2008 1:00:49 PM)
Thank you all for your help and time!
sudhir (Dec 4, 2008 1:01:11 PM)
Hope to see you all in Fall 09!
Junaid_S (Dec 4, 2008 1:01:15 PM)
Thanks all. Have a good day, and a good night to people in my part of the world.
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