2010 London Business School MBA Chat with Mary Ferreira & Oliver Ashby

2010 London Business School MBA Chat with Mary Ferreira & Oliver Ashby

Please feel free to let us know if you would like to be informed of future chats by sending e-mail to chat@accepted.com. We would also be interested in knowing if you would prefer a different format or different topics.

Linda Abraham (Dec 7, 2009 12:00:00 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 all applicants to the London Business School chat today, and I want to congratulate you for taking the time to learn more about London Business School. Whether you are working hard on your application for London Business School’s Round 2 deadline on January 6th , preparing for your London Interview or doing research with the intention of submitting later this year, to make a sound application decision and gain acceptance to the school of your choice, you need to know as much as you can about the schools you are applying to. Being here today allows you to ask the London Business School experts about this outstanding business school.

I also want to welcome the impressive team London Business School has assembled to answer your questions today:

  • Oliver Ashby, Recruitment & Admissions Manager, MBA Programme. Oliver looks after candidates who are based in continental Europe and Latin America.
  • Phillipa Hain, Recruitment & Admissions Manager, MBA Programme. Phillipa looks after candidates who are based in the Middle East, Africa and Asia.
  • Mary Ferreira, Recruitment & Admissions Manager, MBA Programme. Mary looks after candidates who are based in Australia, New Zealand and the UK
  • Hannah Smith, Marketing Manager, Career Services.
  • Erik Wilterding, MBA 2010 student. Erik is also an MBA student ambassador who is in the second year of his MBA. Erik is from the United States where he studied Mathematics and Philosophy at undergrad. Before joining the MBA, Erik was based in New York City where he worked with IBM Global Services. Erik is involved with several student clubs and he is current President of the Consulting Club. For his internship, Erik was selected to be one of the eight person London Business School Summer Consulting team. (Details are available online )
  • Gabriel Mas, MBA 2011student. Gabriel is a first year MBA student ambassador and is a dual national of Spain and the United States. Gabriel attended Tufts University where he studied Quantitative Economics and International Relations. At London Business School he is involved with several of the student clubs and is on the organizing committee of the Global Social Venture Competition. He is also a member of the China Club and is co-leader of the upcoming student trek (which includes many company visits) to Shanghai this December. Prior to the MBA he worked as Senior Strategy Consultant at The Cluster Competitiveness Group in Barcelona.
  • Damien Staples, MBA 2011student. Damien is a first year MBA student ambassador and is an Australian national. At undergrad he studied Information Management at Monash University in Melbourne. At London Business School, Damien is a member of several of the student clubs and he plays a particularly active role with the Australia New Zealand Club and the Cycling Club. Prior to the MBA Damien worked as IT Manager in Corporate Systems, GE Capital (Commercial Finance) in the United States

Welcome to our chat new-comers and veterans. Thanks to everyone for joining.

LBS Fan (Dec 7, 2009 12:02:15 PM)
Oliver: Thanks for the opportunity. Besides my main focus on business, I am interested in public policy. What initiatives at LBS or the University can a full-time LBS MBA student look forward to?

Doctor Manhattan (Dec 7, 2009 12:02:47 PM)
Phillipa: In a previous Accepted.com chat (early last year with Peter Johnson and Zoë McLoughlin), it was mentioned that as a rough benchmark, you will call about 30% of all applicants for interviews and then accept about 70% afterwards for final offers. This translates into a rough rate of about 21%. Since this chat, my research into other transcripts has indicated that you do not actually set rough targets, but drift with the strength of the applicant pool. Can you please clear this up by indicating, in general, the percentage of those who get called for interviews, the percentage of those accepted after interviewing, and what your general acceptance rate is? Thanks!

Linda Abraham (Dec 7, 2009 12:03:32 PM)
Hannah, how is recruiting going for the class of 2010?

Linda Abraham (Dec 7, 2009 12:04:19 PM)
Damien, Gabriel & Erik: What do you like best at London Business School? What would you like to see improved?

OliverAshbyLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:04:52 PM)
LBS Fan: We have an active Business in Government Club who organise a number of events on campus and also provide opportunity to network across the London Business School Community with individuals also interested in public policy.

HannahSmithLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:05:27 PM)
Linda: It's still very early to report anything on the MBA2010 recruitment, but there has been a lot of interview activity during this past autumn term and offers are being made.

Linda Abraham (Dec 7, 2009 12:05:49 PM)
Hannah, That's great to hear.

Fehride (Dec 7, 2009 12:06:03 PM)
Oliver: I have heard that on average, consulting candidates have a higher GMAT score than applicants with other sector backgrounds. What is an average GMAT score for applicants with a consulting background and/or career goal?

PhillipaHainLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:06:46 PM)
Doctor Manhattan: The statistics change depending upon the strength of the applications, that is correct. We look at the strength of the individual, not the number of applications. My suggestion to any applicant it to put forward the strongest profile possible including GMAT, undergraduate, work experience and your essays – why you want to come to London Business School and why an MBA? For more information on this please visit our website.

KingNothing (Dec 7, 2009 12:07:17 PM)
Phillipa: I will have 4.5 yrs of experience by the time the course starts. Is this considered par for course? And how important is actual international travel? I work daily with multiple teams from across the world...does that count?

GabrielMasLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:07:48 PM)
Linda: What I like best about the London Business School is most certainly the people. This is what has impressed me the most. What could be improved: I sometimes feel that I could go in more depth in some of the core courses, but I know that in the second year I will be able to take those electives that interest me most, and go into more depth in those areas.

OliverAshbyLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:08:04 PM)
Fehride: Our average GMAT score for the class of MBA2011 is 697. I wouldn't associate a particular level of score with any particular industry. All London Business School students require a competitive GMAT score (above 600) to be admitted.

Fehride (Dec 7, 2009 12:08:12 PM)
Oliver: It’s more of a technical question: Does the server have any history of playing up towards the deadline?

DamienStaplesLondon (Dec 7, 2009 12:08:48 PM)
Linda, The diverse student body, fantastic clubs, strength of the faculty and the fact that we have a pub attached to the campus are all wonderful aspects of studying at LBS! Classes have been challenging and insightful, I've met many very talented people and have had a great deal of fun. Opportunities for improvement - little more flexibility in term 1 schedule would have been great!

Linda Abraham (Dec 7, 2009 12:09:28 PM)
Hannah, do you see any industries as being particularly active in recruiting LBS graduates and interns this year?

OliverAshbyLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:10:07 PM)
Fehride: Historically we have not experienced difficulties, but we would recommend submitting your application in good time for the deadline in case you experience any IT-related issues.

Niranjan (Dec 7, 2009 12:10:30 PM)
Hi Oliver & team, I would like to know about the opportunities for entrepreneurial studies and entrepreneurship at London Business School. Specifically: 1) Networking Opportunities (in terms of industrial networking) 2) Help provided by the school post-MBA in start-up 3) Success stories of past from the school.

Linda Abraham (Dec 7, 2009 12:11:11 PM)
Erik: Could you tell us a little about your Second Year Consulting Project? I understand you actually get paid for this work?

PhillipaHainLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:11:34 PM)
King Nothing: Your work experience will be evaluated by quality, not the number of years. On average our students have just under 6 years, but the range begins at 2 years. It is important to point out international experience, but it is not a requirement. As you would be studying in a multicultural environment it would be wise to use this experience in your essays.

Doctor Manhattan (Dec 7, 2009 12:12:02 PM)
Phillipa: Can you indicate what role the alumni interview plays in the application process? Is it to confirm the quality of the applicant’s image on paper? Is it to determine how well an applicant performs under stress? Is it to ascertain fit for the London Business School community? Or is it to discover any red flags that would lead the Admissions Committee to ultimately deny an applicant a spot in the programme? Will an average interview hurt an otherwise stellar application? Will a strong interview boost a below-average application? What are your thoughts?

Tania (Dec 7, 2009 12:12:25 PM)
Damien, Gabriel & Erik: What electives are the most popular at LBS and which professors do students consistently recommend?

GabrielMasLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:13:26 PM)
Tania: I am still in my first year. But I'm sure Erik can elaborate...

ErikWilterdingLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:13:57 PM)
Niranjan: In addition to Oli's response, you also have one core course geared towards entrepreneurship, Discovering Entrepreneurial Opportunities. Although I'm looking to pursue a career in Strategy after LBS, this was one of my favorite courses and was principally about how to identify the needs of a given market.

Shivani (Dec 7, 2009 12:14:38 PM)
Erik: I am interested in learning more about the Entrepreneurship Summer School. In particular, I know the summer is quite important for doing internships. Do most people taking part in the Entrepreneurship Summer School do summer internships as well?

HannahSmithLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:14:41 PM)
Linda: The intern recruitment for MBA2011 really kicks off in January, so it is too early to tell for them. In terms of the internships that the MBA2010 class did, they were across all sectors - Finance, consulting and industry. There was an increase with those going into internet/technology companies such as Google and some interesting internships with the Olympic games organising committee. 38% of internships for the MBA2010 class were in Finance.

ErikWilterdingLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:15:29 PM)
Linda: Per the Second Year Consulting Project, I'm still looking for a company with whom to work. A few friends and I have formed a team, and we have contacted several firms that we'll be following up with next week. All-in-all, however, this should be a great opportunity to work with an external company.

PhillipaHainLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:15:58 PM)
Doctor Manhattan: All of the above. We use the interview to ascertain all of the areas you mentioned. And yes, someone with an excellent profile on paper may not be the right fit for London Business School and vice versa, someone who did not seem as impressive on paper may well deliver in person. It is important to be yourself and remember that the interview works two ways, this is also the candidate’s opportunity to learn more about the School and the alumni network.

OliverAshbyLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:16:08 PM)
Hi Niranjan: Entrepreneurship is an extremely important element of the London Business School experience. We have a Centre for Entrepreneurship, bringing top faculty to School. Our alumni network consists of a huge range of entrepreneurs like Tony Wheeler, the founder of the Lonely Planet, who recently gave a multi-million pound donation to the School for a dedicated Entrepreneurship Chair. The School hosts frequent entrepreneurial competitions on campus including the recent Global Security Challenge for Start-ups in the military arena.

Fehride (Dec 7, 2009 12:16:12 PM)
Oliver: In my country, only a couple of LBS alumni are represented and one of them is my co-worker, which I am not sure will be un-biased, if he is to interview me. Is there any way I could let the admissions committee know about this circumstance so that I am interviewed by an impartial alumni?

KingNothing (Dec 7, 2009 12:16:39 PM)
Thanks a lot Phillipa. I was trying to understand whether having international experience in the form of actual travel to other countries is a prerequisite. Also, will it make or break an otherwise strong application?

ErikWilterdingLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:16:40 PM)
Shivani: The ESS is very popular, and you need to formally apply and be accepted into it. That said, some people that are accepted also do an internship, although this is a relatively small population given the amount of course work that you will have to do.

ErikWilterdingLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:17:47 PM)
Tania: some of the more popular electives are: Managing Corporate Turnarounds, Project Management, Financial Statement Analysis, Corporate Strategy, New Venture Development, and Advanced Corporate Finance.

OliverAshbyLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:18:35 PM)
Fehride: If shortlisted to interview, in order for the process to be entirely fair, the Recruitment & Admissions Team ensure that the interviewer and interviewee do not know each other. We will check this before arranging the interview.

PhillipaHainLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:18:42 PM)
King Nothing: Some of our students have experience from a number of different countries but there are also students who have only studied and worked inside their home country. Both profiles can add significant value to class discussion. The quality of the work experience is what we look for.

Tania (Dec 7, 2009 12:18:46 PM)
Oliver: I hold dual-citizenship from a Caribbean country and Canada. Are there any students from the Caribbean? If so, in the past two years, about how many students on average hold citizenship from an English-speaking Caribbean country? How about Canada?

Doctor Manhattan (Dec 7, 2009 12:19:13 PM)
Phillipa, we’ve got 9 gut-wrenching days left to final Stage 1 decisions! You were kind enough to let us know about short-listed (interview) decisions a day early. Will you adopt the same practice for the final decision and begin sending out notices on Tuesday, December 15th? What is the earliest time we can expect to hear our final decisions? What is the absolute latest time on Wednesday, December 16th (London time) we can expect to hear back? Just wanted to add that I thoroughly enjoy the more humane process London Business School adopts by releasing all decisions on one day, as opposed to other processes that roll them out over a month or even longer! I interviewed for Stage 1 and am anxiously awaiting the final decision! Thanks!

KingNothing (Dec 7, 2009 12:19:47 PM)
Thanks Phillipa. That was really helpful and encouraging!!

Linda Abraham (Dec 7, 2009 12:20:09 PM)
Damien, Gabriel & Erik: The school web site touts the London Advantage. What does that mean to you as a student at London Business School?

DamienStaplesLondon (Dec 7, 2009 12:21:08 PM)
All, while waiting for the next round of questions I thought I'd tell you all about last Saturday evening. Each year at LBS the Student Association organizes a Santa Pub Crawl around London. This basically involves ~450 current students from a broad range of London programs roaming around London dressed in Santa costumes. For an hour and a half last Saturday I was standing in Piccadilly Circus with 150 of my Santa colleagues singing Christmas carols to an audience of more than 200 people. It was a sight to see! All part of the London experience!

Linda Abraham (Dec 7, 2009 12:21:34 PM)
Thanks Damien! Were you on key?

DamienStaplesLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:21:56 PM)
I have perfect pitch, of course! :)

KingNothing (Dec 7, 2009 12:22:02 PM)
Hannah: With so many football clubs in London, I am really interested in perhaps working for one of them post my MBA. What are the chances of this? Have any previous students landed such jobs?

KingNothing (Dec 7, 2009 12:22:35 PM)
Hahaha -- wonderful Damien! It just makes me want to go to London Business School even more!

PhillipaHainLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:22:39 PM)
Doctor Manhattan: Congratulations on making it to interview, and I am glad to learn that you have enjoyed the process. We would aim to have all decisions sent out at the latest by midnight Wednesday, 16 December. Unfortunately, I cannot give you an exact time.

samiurtalukder (Dec 7, 2009 12:22:56 PM)
Phillipa: I would like to know if LBS has exchange partnership programs with U.S. Business Schools, for example, Yale,  or NYU, among others. I would also appreciate if you could share a little bit more about such opportunities - do most students return to the U.S. after the exchange program, or do they pursue employment opportunities in the UK? How feasible and practical is the latter if that's the case for international students?

OliverAshbyLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:22:57 PM)
Tania: We currently have 12 Canadian students on MBA2011. While we do not currently have Caribbean students, we have admitted students from the Caribbean in the past.

Fehride (Dec 7, 2009 12:23:04 PM)
Oliver: How important is it to mention it in the essays that I have talked to LBS alumni and am particularly interested in a particular professor’s class?

MaryFerreiraLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:23:28 PM)
Niranjan: I know that Oliver and Eric have outlined some of our entrepreneurial opportunities which run through student and alumni life from things such as student involvement in the Global Social Venture Competition (London Business School is one of the organisers) through to work carried out by Sussex Place Ventures which helps provide seed capital and access to development finance. We have a helpful link on our website which outlines just some of the entrepreneurial activity across London Business School.

GabrielMasLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:23:47 PM)
Linda: Being in London has many advantages. On the one hand, we continuously get excellent speakers across a range of industries on campus. Being in London is definitely a reason for this. Similarly, I am confident that being in London, close to potential employers, helps in recruiting. Finally, and no less important, London is just a great city to live in! It's fun and full of cultural activities.

Doctor Manhattan (Dec 7, 2009 12:24:24 PM)
Thanks, Phillipa! Hopefully, I can last till the 16th!

Doctor Manhattan (Dec 7, 2009 12:24:44 PM)
Hannah: When top firms, whether from Finance (like Goldman Sachs), Consulting (like McKenzie), and Industry (like Google), recruit on campus, is it true they weed out applicants in their initial screening by automatically eliminating those with GMAT scores below 700? I’ve heard credible instances of this on numerous occasions in American Schools (some even say 720 is a benchmark for getting in the door at these firms!) and wondered if this experience was true at London Business School?

ErikWilterdingLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:24:52 PM)
KingNothing: Just a quick note that one of my very good friends, and fellow Student Ambassador, Parminder Basran, is formerly a professional footballer and is looking to move into a sports-oriented private equity fund. Although it's an unusual post-MBA destination, he's made some great connections in this area, and it's looking like he'll be successful.

KingNothing (Dec 7, 2009 12:24:57 PM)
Agree with Doc Manhattan.....the wait is excruciating!

OliverAshbyLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:25:42 PM)
Fehride: We always stress that it is vital to pick the right school for you. At London Business School we are looking for students who really want to come to our School specifically. Research like you mentioned shows a commitment and also means your choice to apply was made carefully.

KingNothing (Dec 7, 2009 12:26:05 PM)
Oliver: Regarding scholarships, can a student qualify for multiple scholarships? What is the maximum amount a student has managed to get from London Business School scholarships?

OliverAshbyLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:26:19 PM)

Linda Abraham (Dec 7, 2009 12:26:22 PM)
Damien, Gabriel & Erik: What attracted you to London Business School? Has your experience met your expectations?

DamienStaplesLondon (Dec 7, 2009 12:26:28 PM)
Linda, the London Advantage = Diversity, Fun, Exceptional Learning, Doorstep access to Fortune 500, access to internships and exchange programs with top institutions all over the globe. It means, Rugby, Cycling, Rowing, Tennis and just about every other sport you'd want to play! Bottom line, the London Advantage is what you make of it!

Linda Abraham (Dec 7, 2009 12:26:44 PM)
Thank you!

KingNothing (Dec 7, 2009 12:26:52 PM)
WOW - thanks Erik! That's encouraging. I am no professional, but am a huge Manchester United fan. Working at a football club would hence be a dream. (Even it happens to be Chelsea! I draw the line at Liverpool!!)

HannahSmithLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:26:54 PM)
KingNothing: We have had students in the past that have done projects with Arsenal football club and the career services team holds relationships with organisations from many different industries.

Mihir (Dec 7, 2009 12:27:26 PM)
Hannah: How is the CleanTech activity at LBS - activity clubs, internships & recruitment, etc?

PhillipaHainLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:27:31 PM)
Samiurtalukder: We exchange with around 30 schools worldwide and most of the top US schools, including NYU Stern. I am not sure about how many of those return, but our graduating students pursue opportunities all over the world. We have a very strong alumni network in the US, so many do move back across the pond. I think the chances will depend upon the individual. Hannah will be able to add more about the recruitment efforts in the US.

GabrielMasLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:27:54 PM)
Let me tell you about my study group: We are a Brazilian consultant, an American who worked at a pharmaceutical company, a Mexican Banker, an Indian who worked at a private equity house, an Australian entrepreneur, and myself. At the beginning it took some time to learn to work for each other. I have to say though that we have become good friends, and I think we’re doing good work as well. This is a great part of the MBA program.

ErikWilterdingLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:27:54 PM)
Linda: I came to LBS for several reasons, although chief among them were the opportunity to work internationally after business school and the opportunity to strengthen my understanding of accounting and finance.

dana (Dec 7, 2009 12:28:45 PM)
Could you speak more about the finance courses offered at LBS? I really want to do portfolio/ asset management and I was wondering how strong LBS is in that area. Thank you!

ErikWilterdingLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:28:56 PM)
KingNothing: Glad to see that you have such good taste in football. I went to a few Man U games last year, and they were fantastic!

britt (Dec 7, 2009 12:29:04 PM)
Phillipa: Hello! I'm currently enrolled in a full-time MBA program in the US, however I'm interested in participating in study abroad program with LBS. What options are available to current MBA students? How would I go about applying to the study abroad program?

OliverAshbyLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:29:09 PM)
KingNothing: A student can apply to multiple London Business School scholarships, but can only take one. If offered two awards, the student may choose which they would like to receive. Our largest award is the MBA25 award, donated by the Class of MBA 25 and provides £50,000.

Niranjan (Dec 7, 2009 12:29:13 PM)
Thanks Oliver, I will check about the entrepreneurship center. Does someone with a family business background stand an extra-edge over others in his application?

HannahSmithLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:30:02 PM)
Doctor Manhattan: There are certainly occasions when people have been hired by these firms from London Business School with GMATs of less than 720.

DamienStaplesLondon (Dec 7, 2009 12:30:03 PM)
Linda, the people and the culture attracted me to London business school - students here represent more than 60 nations providing us with an exceptionally global network after graduation. The community is also very 'real', and the people are genuine which makes it a pleasant learning environment!

KingNothing (Dec 7, 2009 12:30:10 PM)
Thanks Hannah. I did read about a student's Arsenal auditing project. But is anything non-finance?

OliverAshbyLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:30:38 PM)
Niranjan: Not necessarily, it very much depends on the individual experience. We do value family business experience and have an active Family Business Club on campus.

dana (Dec 7, 2009 12:30:43 PM)
Oliver: How important is it to have seen the school or spoken to alumni/recruiters from LBS?

PhillipaHainLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:30:48 PM)
Britt: The best thing to do is contact the programme management team at your current school. They will be able to tell you whether they have places at London Business School and how you can apply.

Doctor Manhattan (Dec 7, 2009 12:30:53 PM)
Phillipa: Have you confirmed what the fees for the August, 2010 intake will be? I know they currently stand at 45,500 GBP, and are subject to review.

arun (Dec 7, 2009 12:31:27 PM)
Damien, Gabriel, Erik: I am visiting London Business School on December 15th. Can you give me some tips how could I enrich my visit as much as possible? I am in London just for the day though.

Doctor Manhattan (Dec 7, 2009 12:31:43 PM)
Hannah, how about scores below 700? Is this rare or not reported to your knowledge?

PhillipaHainLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:31:48 PM)
Doctor Manhattan: The fees have not been confirmed but we will have this information by 16 Dec - D Day.

OliverAshbyLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:32:35 PM)
Dana: We very much recommend doing as much research as possible into the School. We have regular Information Sessions and an informal Drop-in that you can attend. Research demonstrates a commitment to London Business School. For more information, please visit our information events page.

Doctor Manhattan (Dec 7, 2009 12:32:35 PM)
Phillipa: When students undertake exchange programmes with your partner universities, during what term/quarter of what year do the majority of these take place?

samiurtalukder (Dec 7, 2009 12:32:47 PM)
Oliver: How has the financial landscape, in terms of loan opportunities, affected international students' interests? Are there new loan programs now, or anything specific that international students should take into consideration prior to applying to LBS?

Doctor Manhattan (Dec 7, 2009 12:32:55 PM)
Great, thanks Phillipa! In general, are these expected to increase by a lot or by some small inflation-adjusted margin?

ErikWilterdingLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:33:09 PM)
Arun: I'd recommend that, if possible, you visit on 14 December when there will be an official MBA Drop-in session. By taking part in this, you'd get the opportunity to listen to a professor speak, tour the campus, and speak to someone from Admissions.

HannahSmithLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:33:10 PM)
King Nothing: I am not sure if they were all in finance, but be assured that there are new and interesting opportunities that come up each year.

OliverAshbyLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:33:53 PM)
Samiurtalukder: We have a bespoke loan scheme with HSBC, and more details are available online.

GabrielMasLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:34:14 PM)
Arun: the 15th is a quiet time here, as most people have finished exams and are gone for the break. That being said, I would recommend that you take a tour of the school, try to speak to students and professors, and also walk around the neighbourhood, especially Regent's park.

PhillipaHainLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:34:15 PM)
Doctor Manhattan: This is dependent on a few different factors like the exchange school's term dates and also the student's preferences for electives, but most exchanges take place in the Autumn and Spring terms.

Linda Abraham (Dec 7, 2009 12:34:19 PM)
Damien, Gabriel & Erik: Have the events in the financial markets and the recession affected London’s coursework? How have they entered the classroom?

Niranjan (Dec 7, 2009 12:34:40 PM)
Oliver: I read about the average GMAT score, but is there any minimum cut-off GMAT Score (say 650 or so) and in case of multiple GMAT attempts, which score do you consider?

Doctor Manhattan (Dec 7, 2009 12:35:31 PM)
Phillipa: Do you have a rough window of when you expect the first deposit for successful Stage 1 applicants? I believe for the last class it was 1,500 GBP on the 25th of January and then a larger sum later on in June. Can you provide a detailed schedule of your deposits (how much each deposit is) and when each is due? Thanks!

OliverAshbyLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:35:48 PM)
Niranjan, regarding multiple GMAT scores, we only consider the best score and the minimum is 600.

Tania (Dec 7, 2009 12:36:20 PM)
Hannah: I'm in the process of preparing my application for Round Two so I really appreciate the opportunity to ask these questions. I worked in France last year and hope to have French as my second language, possibly taking up Spanish as a third language. With regards to the professional benefit of the language requirement, do you have any statistics on the number of graduates who go into markets where the primary language is their chosen second language (non-native speakers)?

HannahSmithLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:36:24 PM)
Doctor Manhattan: A higher GMAT is definitely good to have but is not the only thing that the recruiters look at. The average for the MBA2009 class was 690 and 67% of them went into either finance or consulting. We do not report on specific GMAT scores for individual organisations.

arun (Dec 7, 2009 12:36:56 PM)
Thanks Erik & Gabriel. Unfortunately my flights are booked and have taken a day off from the office. Is it possible to talk to someone in the admission office that day?

dana (Dec 7, 2009 12:37:32 PM)
Oliver: I live in New York and it seems like there are no other info session available in New York before the deadline in January.

PhillipaHainLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:37:55 PM)
Doctor Manhattan: Stage 1 commitment fees will be due on 29 January, but please be aware that as the fee details have not been confirmed the amounts could be subject to change. The reservation fee will be due on 24 June.

DamienStaplesLondon (Dec 7, 2009 12:38:23 PM)
Dana, I'm still in my first year so I haven't had the chance to take any finance electives yet, but the finance core is very strong - I'm not from a finance background, but after three months, I'm a resident expert in pricing bonds, valuing projects and companies, assessing risk and return and market trading strategies... and this all from one core course! I'm also planning to take the Capital Markets elective, which goes into more depth. From there the finance faculty offers a broad range of finance electives in the second year - examples include Financial Analysis of M&A, Entrepreneurial Financing, Global Currency Markets, PE & VC Finance. You can also check out more on the core subjects online.

Linda Abraham (Dec 7, 2009 12:38:30 PM)
Oliver & Phillipa: We are a few weeks away from London Business School's next application deadline (January 6th ). What advice would you have for applicants aiming to submit then?

ErikWilterdingLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:38:39 PM)
Arun, try emailing mbainfo@london.edu to ask them if someone could meet you on 15 December.

OliverAshbyLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:39:02 PM)
Dana: While we regularly hold information sessions/events in New York, I am afraid there are none before 6th January.

Niranjan (Dec 7, 2009 12:40:11 PM)
How about information sessions in Hyderabad/India, I couldn't find any either. Do you plan to hold something in near future?

KingNothing (Dec 7, 2009 12:40:21 PM)
Why doesn't London Business School send its representatives to India for information sessions? I have noticed that there have been no such sessions for some time now?

MaryFerreiraLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:40:31 PM)
Mihir: In connection to CleanTech, I suggest having a look at some of the activity linked to the student organised Responsible Business Club . There is a great elective that our degree programme students can sign up for too. This is called Sustainability – Implications of Environmental and Demographic Change and will be taught by members of our Strategy and Economics group. In addition, just today I heard from two MBA alumni, one (Ishani), whose start-up business, Arctic Holdings, was featured in the papers this weekend. Another, (Gabrielle Weybrecht) has recently written a book that stemmed out of a project she undertook whilst an MBA student at London Business School. Her book is called "The Sustainable MBA: The Manager's Guide to Green Business".

DamienStaplesLondon (Dec 7, 2009 12:41:57 PM)
Linda, Regarding the recent recession, I don't believe there have been any official changes to the core subject material as yet as the core subjects generally look more at broad fundamentals using examples for which there is a beginning and an end...as yet we don't know the full story as to what the repercussions of this recession will be. However the recession has come up in a number of impromptu classroom discussions - for example, we had a debate with our accounting professor regarding the role accountants might (or might not) have played in contributing to the crisis!

arun (Dec 7, 2009 12:42:02 PM)
Thanks guys, any chance one of you are from the Public Speaking Club? If so, anything going on the 15th December?

Linda Abraham (Dec 7, 2009 12:42:38 PM)
Damien, that sounds like an interesting discussion.

Doctor Manhattan (Dec 7, 2009 12:42:59 PM)
Hannah, in your opinion from what you've witnessed, what score would you consider to be a GMAT cut-off for students looking to recruit in top firms across Finance, Consulting and Industry?

ErikWilterdingLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:43:25 PM)
All: For anyone interested in the Consulting Club, feel free to check out our new website (although, please note that it is still a bit of a work in progress!):  We host a lot of companies on campus, provide interview skills training, and sponsor students to take part in international case competitions.

OliverAshbyLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:43:42 PM)
KingNothing: We attended fairs in New Delhi and Mumbai last week as part of the QS Tour. We may revisit again in the future.

Doctor Manhattan (Dec 7, 2009 12:43:45 PM)
Oliver and Phillipa: Can you comment on the strength of this year's Stage 1 applicants? Are you excited about the pool?

ErikWilterdingLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:44:08 PM)
Arun: No luck here, but you should put that in your note to mbainfo, and they may be able to help you.

britt (Dec 7, 2009 12:44:23 PM)
Phillipa: My University isn't a partner University with LBS. In that case, is there still a chance for me to study abroad with LBS?

PhillipaHainLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:44:26 PM)
Linda: Applicants should ensure they have met all admission requirements and if there are any grey areas please do provide an explanation. GMAT range is 600-800. CV, just one page please. Make sure you have a trusted friend or colleague proof read your essays. Also, make sure you have clearly identified why you want to go to London Business School and what you hope to do with your time here, as well as providing a clear explanation of your post-MBA goals.

HannahSmithLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:44:49 PM)
Tania: We don't have data on how many actually go into a job where they are using their second language but the job placements are certainly global: UK 51%, USA/Canada 8%, Europe (outside UK) 24%, Asia 7%, Latin America 4%, Middle East 3%, Australasia 2%, Africa 1%

Linda Abraham (Dec 7, 2009 12:44:54 PM)
Great advice. Phillipa. Thanks.

GabrielMasLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:45:05 PM)
Let me talk about some of the best moments of my first term: I would have to say that going to Madrid to play a football tournament against other business schools was great. Unfortunately we didn’t win this time, but I'm sure we will in February when we go to Austin to play some US schools. In addition to having a great time playing football, it was also a chance to network with students from other schools.

PhillipaHainLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:45:27 PM)
Britt: No I am sorry, the best thing you could do is feedback to your Programme Management team.

OliverAshbyLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:45:27 PM)
Doctor Manhattan: So far we have received very strong and diverse applications suggesting another bright Admissions year. We are extremely excited about bringing another Exceptional MBA class onto campus in August.

Rachel (Dec 7, 2009 12:45:29 PM)
Phillipa: How does this year's Stage 1 compare in quantity and quality to last year's Stage ?

Mihir (Dec 7, 2009 12:45:44 PM)
Oliver: How do you treat an MBA applicant who is a PhD? A person with a PhD might be towards the upper age group (32-33) and yet have fewer work-experience (4-5 years).

Linda Abraham (Dec 7, 2009 12:46:30 PM)
Damien, Gabriel & Erik: You’re all active in a number of different extra-curricular activities. How do you find the time, and could you tell us a little about them?

arun (Dec 7, 2009 12:47:05 PM)
I have been in touch with mbainfo. It seems I am out of luck :) I am trying to meet some students through personal contacts. I am sure it would still be fun.

OliverAshbyLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:47:28 PM)
Mihir: We very much look at a candidate's academic background in the context of the rest of their application. We would certainly take notice of a PHD if that meant a candidate had fewer years of work experience as a result.

MAA (Dec 7, 2009 12:47:41 PM)
Oliver, after having an interview and applied with a strong application, would you still recommend to try to improve a 680 GMAT score for being below average? would that be convenient for the recruitment process afterward?

PhillipaHainLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:47:48 PM)
Rachel: The quality in both years has been very high and I am sure that the students in the chat can testify to the exceptional peer group on the MBA.

DamienStaplesLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:48:17 PM)
Linda, time management is everything on the MBA. There are so many clubs, so many events & activities, the challenge is deciding what to attend given there are only 24 hours in a day! Best advice is to sacrifice sleep--catch up on that in 2 years! :)

Linda Abraham (Dec 7, 2009 12:48:30 PM)
Phillipa: How does application volume compare this year to last year? Many schools are reporting flat or lower application volume.

ErikWilterdingLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:48:30 PM)
Linda: It's tough to manage everything, but definitely possible. I'm most active in the Consulting Club, although I am also in the North American Club, Sailing Club, and the Turnaround Management Club. Additionally, I also try to enjoy London and its many pubs. Ultimately, students just need to make sure that they take classes seriously and then plan around them regarding Club and outside activities.

HannahSmithLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:48:36 PM)
Doctor Manhattan: I wouldn't give a cut off for GMAT across the sectors as we are not given this information by the recruiters. In addition to the support sessions offered by Career Services, students will increase the chances of getting an interview through attending the recruitment events and company presentations, networking, and speaking to alumni at the organisations they are interested in etc.

GabrielMasLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:49:07 PM)
Linda: This is definitely the biggest challenge of the MBA! My recommendation would have to be to prioritize, but always find time to go to Sundowners on Thursdays!

OliverAshbyLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:49:10 PM)
MAA: I would bear in mind that the average is 697 for the current class. Also a GMAT score is never assessed alone, the Admissions Committee will always examine this in the context of the rest of the application.

Linda Abraham (Dec 7, 2009 12:49:19 PM)
Two related questions on the goals essay for Oliver.

RS (Dec 7, 2009 12:49:22 PM)
While writing the goal essay, can I mention about my plan B? Say investment banking (plan A) and consulting (plan B). This will be to mitigate present economic conditions. How specific do you expect the goal mentioned in the essay to be?

dana (Dec 7, 2009 12:49:25 PM)
What is your opinion on writing two goals in your essays? I am interested in portfolio management and I currently work in finance. On the side though, I have filed for a patent which I also want to work on etc.

arun (Dec 7, 2009 12:50:24 PM)
Are one of you from the Pharma sector? If so, could you share some experiences? I am working in Pharma too.

PhillipaHainLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:50:26 PM)
Linda: It is really too early for us to tell, we have only had our first stage of admissions. We had an increase in the last admissions year, similar to that of our competitors. And it is likely the applicant pool for MBA2012 will increase again. But as always, we are only interested in quality not quantity.

Doctor Manhattan (Dec 7, 2009 12:50:48 PM)
Phillipa: Certain speculation exists about the number of places offered per stage in the London Business School application process. If they are to be believed, the Admissions Committee fills about 35% of the class from Stage 1, 35% from Stage 25% from Stage 3, and 5% from Stage 4. Again, this is speculation, but could you please clear this up for us?

PhillipaHainLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:51:44 PM)
Doctor Manhattan: I am not sure of your source, but I can confidently say that is incorrect.

Linda Abraham (Dec 7, 2009 12:51:56 PM)
Damien, Gabriel & Erik: 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?

naveen (Dec 7, 2009 12:52:02 PM)
Phillipa: Could you please explain a bit about the accelerated MBA options LBS offers - 15, 18 or 21 months? Do all get the same MBA degree and which one is the recommended for a career switcher?

Shivani (Dec 7, 2009 12:53:08 PM)
Oliver: I am in the process of building my own business. I would like to continue building my business while attending business school. While I know a full-time program does not allow for students to have jobs on the side, would it be expected that I set aside my business, if I were to be accepted and attend London Business School?

ErikWilterdingLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:53:22 PM)
Linda: By far, I wish that I would have traveled more. I actually left work on a Friday, and arrived in London the following Monday to look for a flat, and I really would have enjoyed a few weeks off exploring the world. Otherwise, there isn't really any academic pre-work that someone would need to complete.

Linda Abraham (Dec 7, 2009 12:53:42 PM)
That does sound a bit pressured, Erik. Good advice.

PhillipaHainLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:53:50 PM)
Naveen: That is correct, all graduates receive the same degree regardless of which duration they select. If you are looking to switch careers then you may want to take advantage of the leadership opportunities in the Student Clubs, which would require you to complete in either 18 or 21 months.

GabrielMasLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:53:51 PM)
Arun: None of us are in the pharma sector, but I think you are referring to the person from my study group that I mentioned earlier. As I’ve worked with him for quite some time, I’ve learned a lot. In fact, just today I submitted a marketing plan for a competition organized by Novartis. Generally speaking, I know of several people in my class from the pharma sector.

Linda Abraham (Dec 7, 2009 12:55:19 PM)
Mary, Oliver, and Phillipa: Any tips for waitlisted applicants? Do you want to know about recent accomplishments, promotions, and other events that may reflect on a candidate’s qualifications and occurred after they submitted their application?

OliverAshbyLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:55:58 PM)
Linda: The waitlist is provided to give applicants a further chance to join the programme. It is ongoing and therefore a candidate may be removed from the waitlist at any time and given an offer or rejected. We recommend waitlisted candidates only provide updates if their professional situation has changed significantly from their original application. All updates should be as succinct as possible.

OliverAshbyLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:56:19 PM)
Shivani: The full-time MBA is an intense experience, especially in the first year, you should be prepared to spend your days (and often) nights on campus. We would not recommend running a business as it may mean that you don't get the most out of your MBA experience.

MAA (Dec 7, 2009 12:56:20 PM)
Phillipa: In case of being put on a waitlist in round 1, does that mean that the candidate would wait until the end of the application process to receive a final decision?

DamienStaplesLondon (Dec 7, 2009 12:56:21 PM)
Linda, if I could have my time again, I'd have left my previous job a little earlier to allow myself some time off prior to starting the program - I literally left my job, moved to London and hit the ground running. First term is heavy--going to a break before starting would have been great!

Niranjan (Dec 7, 2009 12:56:44 PM)
Damien, Gabriel, or Erik: is it possible to connect with alumni or present student ambassadors of London Business School, who are from India or based in India?

PhillipaHainLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:56:54 PM)
MAA: Not necessarily. The waitlist is reviewed at various periods throughout the admissions year.

Shivani (Dec 7, 2009 12:57:13 PM)
Oliver: As a quick clarification, it is an online business, so it would not require travel or being at a different location to run the business.

GabrielMasLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:57:50 PM)
Niranjan: I would recommend that you contact the India Club.

DamienStaplesLondon (Dec 7, 2009 12:57:53 PM)
In addition to my comment above, I would also recommend that all admits try to attend the Admits Weekend hosted at the school in June - this is a great way to get to know the campus and to meet potential future flat mates - also a great opportunity to explore the local area which enables you to make a start looking for flats.

Linda Abraham (Dec 7, 2009 12:57:58 PM)
Thank you again all for participating today. Special thanks to Phillipa, Oliver, Mary, Hannah, and Damien, Gabriel & Erik for answering all these questions.

Upcoming chats:

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Good luck with your applications!

Mihir (Dec 7, 2009 12:58:23 PM)
Thanks a lot, Oliver!

Tania (Dec 7, 2009 12:58:26 PM)
Thank you!

KingNothing (Dec 7, 2009 12:58:29 PM)
Thanks everybody. I really appreciate it!

Niranjan (Dec 7, 2009 12:58:31 PM)
Thanks Gabriel! Thanks everybody!

MAA (Dec 7, 2009 12:58:34 PM)
Thank you!!!

Fehride (Dec 7, 2009 12:58:37 PM)
Thanks a lot!

Shivani (Dec 7, 2009 12:58:45 PM)
Thanks Oliver.

Doctor Manhattan (Dec 7, 2009 12:59:00 PM)
Thanks a lot guys, this was a useful conversation as expected!

naveen (Dec 7, 2009 12:59:17 PM)
Thanks everybody!!

MaryFerreiraLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 12:59:32 PM)
Hi Everyone. This is your chance to ask a final question that might be really important to you in terms of your own preparations for business school. FYI: This is their last week at campus before they head off for holidays. Students have now sat exams and this week they can sign up for a great choice of practical skills courses. These include Negotiating and Influencing, Accent and Voice Coaching and Speed Reading. We have several guests coming to campus this week also including George Soros, who many of the students have signed up to listen to.

dana (Dec 7, 2009 12:59:57 PM)
Thank you!

OliverAshbyLONDON (Dec 7, 2009 1:00:39 PM)
No problems, thank you for your questions.

DamienStaplesLondon (Dec 7, 2009 1:01:11 PM)
Look forward to seeing you all at the Windsor!

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