2005 MIT Sloan MBA Admission Chat with Rod Garcia

2005 MIT Sloan MBA Admission Chat with Rod Garcia

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.

Chat Transcript:

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 10:11:31 AM)
First I want to welcome you all to Accepted.com's MIT admissions chat.

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 10:11:42 AM)
I also want to welcome Rod Garcia, Director of MBA Admissions; Jon McLaughlin, Assistant Director of MBA Admissions; and Mark Hendy, a second-year . Mark could you tell us a little bit about your background?

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 10:11:58 AM)
Thanks to everyone for joining.

RodGarciaMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:12:12 AM)
While Mark is typing, do you have other questions for us?

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 10:12:14 AM)
In the past, we have enjoyed the spontaneity of unmoderated chats at Accepted.com. However, the increasing popularity of these chats meant that spontaneity occasionally turned into chaos. So today, we are going to use a moderated chat format.

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 10:12:29 AM)
In a moderated chat, all your questions go to the moderator (me). I will choose the questions that have the broadest application and those questions will appear in the main window for our MIT guests to reply to. You will only see your question in the main window if and when it is chosen. You will not see your question on the screen if it is not picked.

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:12:41 AM)
OK. I am British and I have a PhD in Chemistry. After that I worked for McKinsey & Co for 2 years.   After that I worked for Tony Blair in the UK Government for a year before coming to Sloan.

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 10:12:44 AM)
Please post your questions, and I will choose as many as possible from the ones you post and our guests will respond. You can also post follow up questions.  Final request: We would like to avoid the brief summary of qualifications (or even the long laundry list) followed by the question, "Can I qualify?" Or "What are my chances?" This isn't the forum for that kind of analysis.

Other than that limitation, this is your chance to ask questions about Sloan's program and admissions policies. Please post your questions.

Eric (Sep 23, 2004 10:13:38 AM)
Why does MIT not have a 3rd round deadline?

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 10:13:53 AM)
MIT Sloan's deadline is roughly one month away. Any advice for applicants at this point in time?

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 10:14:36 AM)
I also want to introduce and welcome Paul Bodine, an Accepted.com editor.

Syn (Sep 23, 2004 10:14:47 AM)
From the outside, it seems that MIT is the perfect fit for any would be entrepreneur in the IT industry ... first would you confirm the assessment? And, if true, why this reputation?

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:15:25 AM)
Linda--I would hope if you are applying for the first round you have learned as much about the school as you can: visit, web, TALKING TO STUDENTS to see about fit. And of course you are probably hunched over a computer doing the 19th revision of your essays :)

vincent (Sep 23, 2004 10:15:26 AM)
Do you actually have a quota for each country?

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 10:16:04 AM)
Thanks Jon :-)

TW (Sep 23, 2004 10:16:14 AM)
For reapplicants, do you look at last year's application as part of the process, or do you just focus on the current app? Or does it depend?

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 10:16:39 AM)
Mark, given your extensive education and excellent work experience, why did you think you need an MBA? AND why Sloan?

RodGarciaMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:17:43 AM)
Eric: we used to have third round (back in the late 80s) but we were putting the same amount of effort that we put in in Round 1 and 2 and only to find a handful of stars. We would rather use that time in the spring to make ourselves available to admitted candidates who are deciding among schools.

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:17:59 AM)
TW--We have access to last year's application but the primary mechanism is this year's. So we encourage people to look at their experience anew, tell us what has changed, but some overlap in subject matter is ok, because hopefully you chose to write about meaningful experiences that are still meaningful.

RodGarciaMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:18:29 AM)
Vincent: No.

TW (Sep 23, 2004 10:18:35 AM)
Thanks, Jon.

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:18:40 AM)
MIT is well known and respected for Entrepreneurship, in high tech as well as other industries. It has this reputation for many reasons: 1) strong faculty, 2) the MIT $50K entrepreneurship competition 3) the scientists and engineers on the main MIT campus who have lots of great ideas.

jwbluefly (Sep 23, 2004 10:18:42 AM)
I've heard that Sloan is trying to get away from an over-technical image, does this have a detrimental impact on the acceptance of applicants from technical professions?

mychoicesloan (Sep 23, 2004 10:18:54 AM)
Why does MIT have different deadlines for recommendations and other application materials?

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:19:25 AM)
Linda, Good question.

Syn (Sep 23, 2004 10:20:07 AM)
Thanks Mark.

teejaay (Sep 23, 2004 10:20:10 AM)
I have had only one direct supervisor for the last two and half years, I used to report to another person in terms of responsibility but not hierarchy (dotted line) so I am planning to take a recommendation from him. Does that create any problems ? Any advice ?

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:21:35 AM)
I think an MBA is a great place to learn things about business that are hard to do on the job. It is also a great place to meet great people and build a network. Finally it provides an opportunity to take a break in your career to review what you have done and decide where you want to go.

Paul_Bodine (Sep 23, 2004 10:21:51 AM)
Do you have any reaction to WSJ's brand-new rankings, which ranked MIT #1 in IT and Operations Management and the #5 top *international* school?

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:21:57 AM)
jwbluefly--not sure what you mean exactly but we are very proud of how our students do in all sectors, and technology is particularly rich for us given our relationship to MIT. We also try to make sure everyone knows about the ground breaking work in finance, the organizational leadership work that goes on here and the new strategic marketing work that is changing industry. We find sometimes people know us through the prism of MIT strength in technology before the others, so we make sure to talk about them too.

william (Sep 23, 2004 10:22:05 AM)
MIT accepts a huge percentage of people from technical backgrounds, more than any other school I believe. When you are reviewing the applications, what makes one technical application stand out from another? Do technical accomplishments weigh more heavily than well-roundedness? Or is that a loaded question :-)

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:22:39 AM)
I chose Sloan, because it is a small school - which is great to get to know a lot of people and it also fits my scientific background well.

RodGarciaMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:22:40 AM)
mychoicesloan: it's less stressful for candidates to know that their recommendations have already been submitted before they submit their application. Try managing two deadlines: recommenders and your application. Now that's a crisis.

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 10:22:58 AM)
Thanks Mark.

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:23:13 AM)
teejay--that sounds like it could work well. Make sure they describe the relationship clearly. I could see a "cross functional" perspective being very useful.

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 10:23:25 AM)
Mark did you have a summer internship? If so where? What do you hope to do after your MBA?

vinimac (Sep 23, 2004 10:24:01 AM)
Hi! I'd like to know how much weight does MIT give to community service done by a candidate or the lack of it ?

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:24:57 AM)
Yes - I think almost all of my class got internships this summer. I worked for Novartis (a pharmaceutical company) in Basel Switzerland, in Strategic Planning.  After Sloan I have the option to go back to McKinsey and I am also looking at other options.

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 10:25:34 AM)
Thanks Mark.

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:25:50 AM)
william--our dominant industries of people coming into Sloan are finance and consulting. We have a fair amount of people who studied engineering in college (34%) which is on the high end of our peer schools, but not substantially different.

RodGarciaMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:26:20 AM)
Vinimac: we will look at your community service experience--if you have it. But you won't be prejudiced if you don't have it.

TW (Sep 23, 2004 10:26:37 AM)
For the essays, I immediately thought of examples for each essay, but all from the work environment. Would you recommend making at least 1 essay non-work related, or are you most interested in relevant professional examples?

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 10:26:58 AM)
What are the acceptance rates for the two different rounds?

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:27:25 AM)
william--when describing technical accomplishments (or any accomplishments really) it is helpful to look at them as applying in a broader context. MBAs need to be leaders and broad based, so how did you leverage different skills?

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 10:27:35 AM)
For those of you who just joined ... In a moderated chat, all your questions go to the moderator (me). I will choose the questions that have the broadest application and those questions will appear in the main window for our MIT guests to reply to. You will only see your question in the main window if and when it is chosen. You will not see your question on the screen if it is not picked. Please post your questions, and I will choose as many as possible from the ones you post and our guests will respond. You can also post follow up questions.

teejaay (Sep 23, 2004 10:27:52 AM)
Thanks John.

manish (Sep 23, 2004 10:27:57 AM)
Hi, I would like to know if the candidate's prospect of getting a job after completing MBA has any role in admission ?

anand (Sep 23, 2004 10:28:06 AM)
MIT is ranked 9th in the most recent ranking from WSJ survey from recruitment perspective.  Any comments on that?

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:28:18 AM)
vinimac--also about CS, we look at the depth of your activities, so we might be more interested in things you have developed a passion for than just a list of activities.

jwbluefly (Sep 23, 2004 10:28:52 AM)
How receptive is the current job market to grads? I've heard many stories from the past few years that the market for MBAs has cooled.

RodGarciaMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:30:31 AM)
Linda: I don't have the acceptance rates available for Round 1 and Round 2 applicants but I can tell you from experience that, because of the number of candidates applying in Round 2, the chances of someone applying in Round 1 are twice as good. But it's a function of the number of people applying.

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 10:30:57 AM)
Thanks Rod.

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:31:00 AM)
jwbluefly: The current job market seems to be picking up nicely. As far as I can tell the bulk recruiters (banks & consultancies) are looking to hire a lot this year after a few lean years. The industrial companies are also looking for people.

obai (Sep 23, 2004 10:31:09 AM)
Hi Rod, is there a word limit on the recommendations? One of my recommenders has informed me that his recommendation will be detailed and lengthy.

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:31:12 AM)
anand--As far as employer info, I would look at where students go after graduation, what the jobs are and if you want to work at places like that. We publish all of that on the web. As far as how we do relative to others, we are always right at or near the top of all our peer schools.

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 10:31:53 AM)
Mark, are you glad you chose an American MBA and specifically Sloan?

RodGarciaMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:31:56 AM)
Manish: we will of course look at your employment prospects but it's not a critical factor in admissions. After all, we have admitted candidates directly from college and also admitted fresh PhD graduates.

vinimac (Sep 23, 2004 10:32:21 AM)
Thanks Rod and Jon! I work as a software engineer. I work in an organization which lets people into managerial position after almost 6 years. Till then I have no direct reports to me. Will the lack of direct reports affect my candidacy?

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:32:28 AM)
There are already a lot of companies on campus looking to recruit and several of my friends are actually complaining about the number of invites they have to recruiting dinners etc. because it can take up a lot of time.

RodGarciaMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:32:46 AM)
Vinimac: no.

ingenuity (Sep 23, 2004 10:32:51 AM)
What is the difference in the profile of applicants between your two year full time MBA program vs. the one year Sloan-Stanford EMBA?

anand (Sep 23, 2004 10:32:53 AM)
Thank you Jon.

teejaay (Sep 23, 2004 10:33:12 AM)
Mark, John - How much interaction have you had with alumni? How receptive/responsive have they been ? Are alumni a channel for internship positions? Does MIT have a formal structure to support this interaction ?

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:36:02 AM)
obai--let me take that one. Sounds like a good recommender! There is no limit on recs, and we encourage people to be thorough. Content, not length is important though.

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:36:03 AM)
teejaay--I just came back from Charlotte NC where we had alums from Loh's, CEO of a venture capital firm and a consultant who drove 2 hours for the presentation to help. We have a formal alumni mentoring program with CDO, and almost a hundred alumni come on campus to help prepare students for industry specific interviews and general career advice. They also help us set up trips like NY Banking Day, etc.

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:37:34 AM)
I have had some interactions with alums. I have an alumni advisor at Genzyme who was very helpful in giving me her insights into the healthcare industry. I have also contacted many alums to come and speak at events on campus.

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:37:50 AM)
teejay--a lot of our alumni come back as recruiters as well.

tobschool (Sep 23, 2004 10:38:31 AM)
could you tell me how Sloan weighs a candidate who is 28 versus another who is 30, everything else considered equal?

vinimac (Sep 23, 2004 10:38:36 AM)
I would like to know whether MIT takes the reputation of the undergraduate institution of a candidate into consideration. Specifically, can attending a not so high profile institution affect one's candidacy even if the post academic experience is pretty good and at par with graduates of top schools?

CD04 (Sep 23, 2004 10:38:36 AM)
hi sorry-I'm late to join. I have a quick question about recs-is it ok if a re-applicant has a recommender from last year write a letter on her behalf ( in addition to the two new recs that are required). My boss has offered to do it (he's a Sloan alumni).

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:38:52 AM)
As far as recruiting having alumni at companies is very helpful.

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:38:59 AM)
tobschool--it makes no difference whatsoever.

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:39:16 AM)
many of them come back to Sloan to recruit

gsbound (Sep 23, 2004 10:39:38 AM)
Do you feel that someone could change careers by getting an MBA at MIT?

AK (Sep 23, 2004 10:39:38 AM)
Hi Rod: hope you gave my regards to maki :) I was looking at the application online. My recommenders prefer to write up a letter rather than post online. Shall I send the recs before I hit submit on the online application or after? cheers

tobschool (Sep 23, 2004 10:39:42 AM)
so there is no such thing as the magic 30 beyond which the chances of acceptance drops steeply?

ron (Sep 23, 2004 10:39:55 AM)
HI All, Rod, can I use my mentor at work as my referee? I have never reported to her directly, but she has a good idea about how I react to situations, etc.

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:40:07 AM)
vinimac--we take a lot of things into account, but to your specific question, we have people from all different types of schools.

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:40:22 AM)
tobschool - the age range in my class is 21 to 42 years old!

anand (Sep 23, 2004 10:40:37 AM)
I am sure most of the student who apply have strong technical/engineering background. Also this group is most likely to have strong academics. What is the most common reasons for declining an applicant in this group?

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:40:51 AM)
gsbound--absolutely 80% of our students are career changers.

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:41:57 AM)
anand--I talked about this a bit earlier, so hope I'm not repeating, but there really is no "technical" group. We don't divide up applications that way.

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:42:33 AM)
ron--mentors can make great recommenders. Make sure they know your day to day work well enough.

tobschool (Sep 23, 2004 10:42:52 AM)
Harvard comes through as leadership obsessed (not a bad thing :-), Kellogg is upbeat about its teamwork. what is the defining statement for Sloan?

ron (Sep 23, 2004 10:43:02 AM)
Thanks Jon

ingenuity (Sep 23, 2004 10:43:12 AM)
What is the difference between profile of two year full time MBA vs. one year Sloan- Stanford EMBA students?

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 10:44:11 AM)
Mark, I might have missed your answer, but I will repost, Are you glad you chose an American MBA and specifically Sloan?

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:44:30 AM)
I would actually say Kellogg is known for Marketing. I think we are known for being smart innovators that get on with the job.

RodGarciaMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:45:01 AM)
Ingenuity: Not familiar with Sloan Fellows students at Stanford. I'm guessing they are 10-15 years older than our MBA students and are mid-career executives.

jwbluefly (Sep 23, 2004 10:45:17 AM)
Is there an advantage to getting our application in before the deadline? Are applications evaluated on a first come first serve basis? Or all together?

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:45:28 AM)
There is actually A LOT of team work at Sloan, most of my classes require teams.

RodGarciaMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:46:20 AM)
jwbluefly: applications are read in batches, so getting your application in a week or a month before the deadline does not affect your chances of being admitted.

ron (Sep 23, 2004 10:46:38 AM)
Is Sloan looking into the new approaches on Social entrepreneurship - e.g., the for-profit approach - if so, which centre has taken the initiative?

teejaay (Sep 23, 2004 10:46:58 AM)
John, Mark I asked this question before but was cut off. I wanted to find out if MIT has a formal structure to facilitate interaction with alumni and how helpful students find alumni (response rates while at MIT) - individual experience. Also, do they play a role in internships ?

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:47:07 AM)
All--We have talked a lot about background but it is important to give us a complete version of yourself. I remember interviewing Mark in London and beings as impressed by his organization of a theatre company as his policy work (hope that came out the right way Mark :)

ingenuity (Sep 23, 2004 10:48:07 AM)
How important of a role do recommendations play in the entire application process?

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:48:20 AM)
Yes, I am glad to be doing my MBA in the states. Apart from Visa hassles it has been a great experience. There are very few globally renowned MBA schools in Europe - INSEAD, LBS, IMD, IESE. I thought about them all and they weren't for me for several reasons..

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 10:50:59 AM)
Ingenuity just asked, How important a role do recommendations play in the entire application process?

vinimac (Sep 23, 2004 10:51:14 AM)
How does MIT interview overseas candidates from not so common places like Cyprus (I am here!)? Will I get sufficient time to plan an overseas trip if I have to take one ? What is the time frame for an interview invitation to be sent and the interview taking place ?

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:51:47 AM)
Jwbluefly: YES - I sent my application from London a week before the deadline because I was going skiing and it got stuck in shipping and only arrived on the morning of the deadline! I got a refund of the cost but if it had not made it there was no other compensation!

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:51:55 AM)
ingenuity--they are very important to confirm the ap. The best of them shed a new light and give a different perspective.

ingenuity (Sep 23, 2004 10:52:02 AM)
Is an EMBA a better choice for older people in their mid-late 30's looking for a career change, or is the two year full time MBA equipped to help them achieve their career aspirations ?

AK (Sep 23, 2004 10:52:12 AM)
Hi Rod: hope you gave my regards to maki in tokoyo :) My recommenders prefer to write up the letters rather than do it online. Shall I hit submit online before or after you receive the letters? cheers

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 10:52:55 AM)
How is recruiting going this year? How are international students doing in the job market?

RodGarciaMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:52:55 AM)
AK: so that was you then.

AK (Sep 23, 2004 10:53:17 AM)
haha yup.

jwbluefly (Sep 23, 2004 10:53:25 AM)
Can you provide any examples of "special circumstances" which are mentioned in the supplemental information part of the essays?

RodGarciaMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:53:57 AM)
AK: we'll gladly accept recommendations written on paper. You back in HK?

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:54:22 AM)
vinimac--We do over interviews all over the world. We didn't get to Cyprus but we were in Istanbul and Athens. All interviews are with adcom, so they all have an equal weight with each other and with the on campus. Invite Time frames on invites vary but we try and get the word out far enough in advance so people can travel, get time off work etc.

anand (Sep 23, 2004 10:54:51 AM)
Hi Rod, is it okay to discuss personal experience in the essay or does it have to be professional?

RodGarciaMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:55:10 AM)
Ingenuity: I believe an MBA is a better option for career changers even if you are in your late 30s. Our range of age is 23 to 44 years (I think).

AK (Sep 23, 2004 10:55:26 AM)
yeah, off again soon, hope the jet lag does not have you?. does it matter whether I hit submit on the online application before or after I send the letters?

RodGarciaMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:55:37 AM)
Anand: both

william (Sep 23, 2004 10:55:59 AM)
In the Sloan essay questions, I do not see the typical future goals, why MBA, why Sloan, question. Is there a reason for this?

anand (Sep 23, 2004 10:56:01 AM)
Thank you Rod.

RodGarciaMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:56:19 AM)
AK: So long as the recs are here by the deadline date. But just to make our lives easier, it is best if the letters are received before you submit your online app.

gsbound (Sep 23, 2004 10:56:33 AM)
What is the best way to indicate a career change without appearing to be flighty or directionless?

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:56:55 AM)
william--I think we would want to see that in your cover letter, which should highlight important parts of your application and talk about those issues

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:56:56 AM)
Linda: Recruiting is going really well at Sloan this year - I think we are right near the top of the rankings. As far as international students - a lot do stay in the states, particularly for banking and consultancy. I should warn however it is still a little more difficult for jobs in industrial companies because fewer will sponsor visa applications.

AK (Sep 23, 2004 10:57:19 AM)
wonderful :) thank you

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:57:44 AM)
I think everyone who graduated last year and wanted a job last year got one.

abhi (Sep 23, 2004 10:57:58 AM)
how difficult is to switch careers and how does the adcom perceive such candidates?

gsbound (Sep 23, 2004 10:58:07 AM)
What is the best way to indicate that I want to change careers- I don't want to appear to be flighty.

RodGarciaMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:58:27 AM)
gsbound & abhi: Jon will take your questions.

bluberry (Sep 23, 2004 10:58:39 AM)
Jon, Rod, does building an alternate transcript (by taking business courses at a decent school part-time) help offset a not-too-great GPA? Also, how do I convert between my Indian school grades (in absolute % figures) to the 4.0 GPA system? A simple conversion would result in the score looking abysmal, whereas it really is not horrendous.

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 10:59:42 AM)
gsbound--A colleague of mine once said "we don't expect you to know what door you want to walk through, but you need to know what house you are in."  I think career changers, and all prospectives need to have a sense of what excites them, have investigated new opportunities so they are informed about possibilities, and have a plan. We expect--we hope, we know--your plan will change, but we need you to give us a good starting point. People underestimate the pace of a school like Sloan. You are caught up in all the momentum quickly.

ingenuity (Sep 23, 2004 11:00:13 AM)
Thanks Rod. How do these older people fit in with the avg mid-late 20's class, and do they get suitable assistance from MIT for placements at senior - mid senior levels ?

william (Sep 23, 2004 11:00:18 AM)
Thanks Jon!

mk (Sep 23, 2004 11:00:25 AM)
What is weightage of application and interview ? Final admission is based on both ? Or is interview a go/No-GO round?

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:00:59 AM)
Blueberry: In the UK we have a different grading system too so I provided explanation on what this grade meant.

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:01:10 AM)
bluberry--we are familiar with various grading systems. Alternative courses are a great way to showcase your current academic state, prove seriousness, interest etc. Don't worry too much!

jwbluefly (Sep 23, 2004 11:05:37 AM)
Any recommendations for making our applications stand out amongst the crowd?

raggs (Sep 23, 2004 11:06:10 AM)
My question was, how does adcom evaluate the grading system from India or any other country which follows a different method?  For e.g.: percentage instead of GPA.

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:06:25 AM)
jwbluefly--If you tell your story well you will stand out, we promise.

gsbound (Sep 23, 2004 11:07:11 AM)
Is a 3.2-3.3 GPA totally out of range? Do the courses you take matter? i.e. underwater basket weaving vs. physical chemistry?

CD04 (Sep 23, 2004 11:07:14 AM)
Hi I feel my application last year was a bit sloppy (I waited until the last minute before doing it-bad move) should I mention that fact when I reapply? Or should I just let it go and do a better job this year?

RodGarciaMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:07:52 AM)
Raggs: we have someone on staff who's been reading applications from India (not just IIT graduates) for 20 some years. She follows the annual university rankings, etc. My advice is do not convert your marks to a U.S. GPA. The two grades are not equivalent.

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:08:18 AM)
gsbound--we have lots of students with those numbers, and from all majors (though I admit to not having seen underwater basket weaving :) )

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:08:41 AM)
CD04 - let it GO! move on and do a good job this year.

raggs (Sep 23, 2004 11:08:59 AM)
I don't see MIT emphasize too much on community service like a few other top10 colleges. Could you throw some light on that?!!

ingenuity (Sep 23, 2004 11:09:03 AM)
Rod, thanks for answering my previous questions. How is the placement cell geared up to help people in mid-late 30's who are changing careers, do they get placed at mid-senior levels or start all over again?

raggs (Sep 23, 2004 11:09:07 AM)
That's good to know, because not every one who is from India can be from the IIT.

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:10:31 AM)
raggs--we care deeply about it if it is something important to you. I don't think we emphasize it less at all. Don't collect activities to buttress your application however, do things you care about that interest you.

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 11:10:34 AM)
Mark, in looking back on your arrival at MIT and the US, is there anything you wish you would have known ahead of time or done differently?

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:10:37 AM)
Ingenuity: the CDO is there to help people of all ages, backgrounds, etc. they will help you find the job you want.

CD04 (Sep 23, 2004 11:10:42 AM)
How close do students get to teachers at Sloan? Do they have interactions outside of the classroom?

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 11:11:03 AM)
If you are looking at an application and the numbers and basic profile is in the ballpark for a Sloan student, what distinguishes an application that is accepted from one that is rejected?

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:11:17 AM)
Ingenuity: I am going to be 30 in a few weeks an age seems very unimportant.

ingenuity (Sep 23, 2004 11:11:36 AM)
Thanks Mark.

RodGarciaMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:11:40 AM)
Mark: I didn't realize you were that old.

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:11:49 AM)
Ha ha - thanks Jon!

ingenuity (Sep 23, 2004 11:12:00 AM)
That sounds reassuring!

ingenuity (Sep 23, 2004 11:12:02 AM)
I am 35!!

ingenuity (Sep 23, 2004 11:12:36 AM)
And seriously wondering if EMBA is a better fit for older folks like me.

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:13:36 AM)
Linda - Try and get your application in in the first round because the visa application can take some time. I got in the 2nd round and applied for the visa straight away and it arrived the day before I was due to leave for Sloan!

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:13:37 AM)
Linda--it really is the quality of the application, of your introspection and the qualities you exhibit in your past interactions. There are a lot of ways to be successful and we want to pick people that respond to what we offer: an environment that rewards creativity, a generous team spirit, a hands on approach and a talent for practical leadership.

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 11:13:38 AM)
Rod, Jon, and Mark have graciously agreed to extend the chat, although Mark has to leave a little early to get to his next class.

RodGarciaMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:13:54 AM)
Ingenuity: the two programs are very different. For example, in our Sloan Fellows Program, you have to be nominated by the company.

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 11:14:05 AM)
Thanks Mark and Jon.

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:14:11 AM)
Last year some people from China did not get their visas in time and had to come back this year.

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:14:26 AM)
So get moving on the paper work if you are from overseas.

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:14:53 AM)
Linda/Mark--Visa issues are such a moving target right now (the govt. is driving this, not the schools). We did have international students who got in off the waiting list in late June and got there visas, but some had problems. We try to help but Mark makes a good point.

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 11:14:56 AM)
If an applicant has a less than desirable GPA and wants to show that he or she can now perform in an academic environment, is the applicant better off taking classes in a traditional environment or in a distance learning program, where perhaps he or she could take more classes because the program is self-paced?

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 11:15:37 AM)
Mark, thanks for the suggestion about the visa, any other points you wished you could have done differently in terms of moving to the US or returning to school?

raggs (Sep 23, 2004 11:15:48 AM)
I wanted to know why there isn't too much emphasis on community service for MIT admissions ..unlike many other top 10 colleges?

ingenuity (Sep 23, 2004 11:16:02 AM)
how do you view people with excellent but fragmented work experience/ long sabbaticals due to personal reasons?

bluberry (Sep 23, 2004 11:16:12 AM)
While we are on the EMBA topic - a lot of people tell me that once you have a certain level of experience (8 years is what I hear), the question as to "why not an EMBA?" comes up when applying to a full-time program. The fact that one's employer does not sponsor an EMBA, does that assuage the concern?

mychoicesloan (Sep 23, 2004 11:16:14 AM)
In case an applicant couldn't get Visa this year, will he be considered as re-applicant next year or he will just get visa next year and will join MIT?

RodGarciaMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:16:47 AM)
Linda: taking recent college-level courses in accounting, microeconomics and calculus (if you have not already taken these courses) will help offset less-than-desirable GPA especially if supported by a good GMAT score.

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:17:11 AM)
raggs--see above, we do emphasize that we care about such things, and if you see our student body you will find many, many people who make it a priority (I just came from a meeting of the socially responsible business club, but we want things you care about.

RodGarciaMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:17:31 AM)
mychoicesloan: We will reconsider your application for the following year.

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:17:45 AM)
Linda other than visas I would also suggest taking some time off work before coming to school - it is a great time to go and do something fun. I worked until 2 days before leaving and that was a bad idea.

gsbound (Sep 23, 2004 11:17:54 AM)
What is the one characteristic that makes Sloan students stand out once they graduate?

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 11:18:13 AM)
How do you evaluate a reapplicant's application?

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 11:19:37 AM)
Is the interview another data point in the application process or is it a make-or-break stage?

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:19:56 AM)
gsbound--unfair question ! :) there are so many different types of people here, but I think they are united by humor, intelligence, teamwork ability and an ability to lead.

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 11:20:17 AM)
We have quite a few international applicants here today. Do you have any advice specifically for internationals?

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:20:32 AM)
Linda - I would also suggest coming to visit Sloan either through the Ambassador Program or if you are admitted - to one of the Admit Weekends - it is a small school and meeting the people here really makes a big difference.

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 11:21:08 AM)
I can't emphasize enough how helpful visits are in learning about a school.

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:21:09 AM)
Linda A--A bit of both, interview is a very important data point because it comes as the final stage in the process, but it is always paired with the application. We interview everyone we admit, and we send adcoms all over the world, so that should give an indication of how seriously we take it.

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 11:21:21 AM)
Thank you.

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:21:52 AM)
Linda - For internationals - If you can, get at least one native English speaker to review your application for grammar, language etc.

jwbluefly (Sep 23, 2004 11:21:58 AM)
How should we prepare for the interview should we be extended an invitiation to do so?

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 11:22:03 AM)
I noticed that you have reduced the number of required essays and changed a few of the questions. Why?

ingenuity (Sep 23, 2004 11:22:29 AM)
How do you view people with excellent but fragmented work experience/ long sabbaticals due to personal factors?

gsbound (Sep 23, 2004 11:22:36 AM)
Jon - I have looked at the ranges for GMAT - I fall at the left end of the curve 670 71%Q - Should I even bother to apply?

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:23:09 AM)
jwbluefly--we actually post something to help you on the web in the application. I don't have the address on hand but we try and be as transparent as possible.

RodGarciaMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:23:31 AM)
raggs: To build on Jon's response, candidates who truly and genuinely care about community service write about them in their application whether or not we ask the question. We want you to tell us what's important to you instead of what's important to us. It doesn't mean that we don't care or do not emphasize community service.

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:23:38 AM)
gsbound--lots of people admitted with that number, it is only one factor.

raggs (Sep 23, 2004 11:24:01 AM)
That's good to know Rod. Thank You.

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 11:24:09 AM)
JW, you may also want to check out the MBA Interview Feedback Database  .

jwbluefly (Sep 23, 2004 11:24:15 AM)
I've heard from other friends at B-school that the emphasis on social events is overwhelming in the beginning. How does Sloan approach the social aspect of b-school?

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:24:34 AM)
ingenuity--it really depends on how you connect the dots. Definitely let us know the context if you think it helps.

jwbluefly (Sep 23, 2004 11:25:06 AM)
Thanks for the URL Linda.

gsbound (Sep 23, 2004 11:25:15 AM)
Thanks Jon - at least the dream is still alive.

ingenuity (Sep 23, 2004 11:25:30 AM)
Thanks Jon.

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 11:25:42 AM)
Last questions...

teejaay (Sep 23, 2004 11:26:19 AM)
What circumstances do you consider to allow deferred admissions ?

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 11:26:25 AM)
Mark, what aspect of the Sloan program do you like best? Least?

RodGarciaMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:26:53 AM)
teejay: as a policy, we don't offer deferments but we will entertain requests on a case by case basis.

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:27:12 AM)
LA--the essays: we are always looking at the application to see if we are getting the best information. We thought we needed to get to know the applicants a little better, so we added the "something meaningful in your life from this past year" question.

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 11:27:12 AM)
Do you have any advice for applicants who are wait-listed at Sloan?

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:27:22 AM)
Jwbluefly: Great question. Sloan is a VERY sociable school. There is so much stuff going on that sometimes it is difficult to choose. We have a weekly social function every Thursday that is sponsored by one of the 60 or so clubs at Sloan. So for example tonight I am going to a Vinters Club wine tasting followed by the Japanese social function later on.

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 11:27:33 AM)
Thank you again all for participating this evening. Special thanks to Rod, Jon, and Neil for joining us today. Thanks also to Paul.

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 11:27:41 AM)
We look forward to seeing you at future chats. On deck:

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 11:27:50 AM)
UCLA -- September 28 Haas -- October 11 NYU Stern -- October 13 HEC -- October 18 Forte Foundation -- October 19 CMU -- October 27

RodGarciaMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:27:57 AM)
Linda: Jon is responding to your question.

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 11:28:08 AM)
Please check the MBA Admissions Chat Schedule for exact times.

gsbound (Sep 23, 2004 11:28:22 AM)
Thanks everyone you all have been very helpful

ingenuity (Sep 23, 2004 11:28:25 AM)
thanks all

jwbluefly (Sep 23, 2004 11:28:29 AM)
Thanks everyone for your answers!

mychoicesloan (Sep 23, 2004 11:28:50 AM)

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 11:28:58 AM)
Thanks Rod.

raggs (Sep 23, 2004 11:29:01 AM)
Thanks Guys

teejaay (Sep 23, 2004 11:29:02 AM)
Thanks Linda for making this happen, thanks Rod, Mark for your time

RodGarciaMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:29:14 AM)
Thanks and good luck to everyone. Jon is answering one last question.

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 11:29:16 AM)
You're all very welcome.

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:29:20 AM)
Linda--As the waiting list manager I can definitely let people know that we do encourage updates and contacts, but that people need to be patient. For one thing, we often will have no information until late in the process, but of course people want definitive answers, which we can't give. We really do want to keep people as informed as possible.

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:29:22 AM)
Jwbluefly: However, if you are not a social animal there are plenty of lower key events

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 11:29:40 AM)
Thanks Jon. That was an answer worth waiting for.

jonmclaughlinMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:30:00 AM)
Thanks all, best of luck.

RodGarciaMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:30:18 AM)
Good luck to everyone applying this year. Two candidates who participated in the chat session last year are now first year students at MIT Sloan!

MarkHendyMIT (Sep 23, 2004 11:30:31 AM)
Good luck with your applications - Sloan is a great school.

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 11:30:33 AM)
Thanks for sharing that Rod.

Paul_Bodine (Sep 23, 2004 11:30:56 AM)
Thank you MIT Sloan.

ingenuity (Sep 23, 2004 11:30:57 AM)
Thanks very much rod/mark.jon and Linda.

AK (Sep 23, 2004 11:31:03 AM)
cheers rod

Linda Abraham (Sep 23, 2004 11:31:07 AM)
Good luck to all of you!

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