2009 London Business School MBA Admissions Chat with Graeme Harper, Amy Hugo and Lisa Mortini
2009 London Business School MBA Admissions Chat with Graeme Harper, Amy Hugo and Lisa Mortini
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Linda Abraham (Sep 29, 2008 11:01:56 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 to prepare for London Business School’s Round 1 deadline on October 14th or you are 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:
- Graeme Harper, Senior Marketing Manager, MBA Programme. Graeme works on all aspects of the MBA marketing at London Business School and, amongst other things, he liaises with the MBA students who contribute to the “Inside the MBA”, London Business School blog - http://mbablog.london.edu/
- Amy Hugo – MBA Marketing and Admissions Officer. Amy oversees the marketing and admissions for candidates who are based in continental Europe and in Latin America.
- Lisa Mortini- MBA Marketing and Admissions Officer. Lisa oversees the marketing and admissions for candidates who are based in Canada and the United States.
- Louise Weir Marketing Coordinator, Career Services
- Claire Hewitson Career Services Team
We also have 2 London Business School students joining us- Vikram Dadlani & Matthew Shenkman.
Vikram and Matthew, can you tell us what you did before arriving at London Business School and what you would like to do when you finish? Also, what is the focus of your studies?
Welcome to our chat new-comers and veterans. Thanks to everyone for joining.
LisaMortiniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:04:40 AM)
Thank you Linda, welcome everyone!
GraemeHarperLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:04:46 AM)
LouiseWeirLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:05:00 AM)
Linda Abraham (Sep 29, 2008 11:05:19 AM)
It’s your turn now. Please post your questions.
Linda Abraham (Sep 29, 2008 11:05:47 AM)
Louise & Claire: Probably the #1 question on everyone’s mind is the “economy on the brink.” Is b-school going to be a safe haven or are students enrolling for Fall 09 going to graduate with poor job prospects and a mound of debt? What is London doing to prevent the second scenario?
VikramDadlaniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:06:31 AM)
Hello everyone. Before coming to London Business School, I was a private banker with Morgan Stanley in India for five years. I was looking to move to Sales and Trading and have been successful at that through my internship.
hurtig (Sep 29, 2008 11:06:35 AM)
Hello Amy, a quick question: Would my wife be able to participate in school social events (sundowners, plays etc..) and get access to the gym and library?
Jason (Sep 29, 2008 11:07:30 AM)
Graeme: What percentage of admitted students receives any sort financial aid in the form of scholarships (need or merit based)?
jjaspirant (Sep 29, 2008 11:08:03 AM)
Lisa: I'm planning to visit the school in November. I'll get to London on Thursday afternoon and come to school on Friday. Are there classes late in the afternoon I can attend on Thursday? I'm working to get my visa and tickets set up.
LouiseWeirLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:08:23 AM)
Hi Linda, Career Services has seen recruitment activity remain consistent despite the downturn in the market, with many recruiters taking a long term view. We have formed close connections with over 800 new recruiters this year, and our business development teams are working to cement relationships with diversified firms globally.
AmyHugoLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:08:29 AM)
Hi Hurtig. Absolutely! We welcome partners at London Business School and have a very active Partners Club here that acts as a great support network. Partners are more than welcome to get involved in community life here. Your wife will also have free access to our gym and library.
Linda Abraham (Sep 29, 2008 11:08:46 AM)
Vikram & Matthew: What do you like best at London Business School? What would you like to see improved? What should applicants do to prepare themselves for a tough job market, if there is one, when they graduate?
GraemeHarperLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:09:53 AM)
Jason, approximately 20% of the class receives some form of scholarship or bursary. The majority of our awards are merit based although we do have a few need based awards. Around half of the class will take a loan through the HSBC-London Business School loan scheme.
Swati S (Sep 29, 2008 11:10:02 AM)
Graeme: Please highlight key attributes that LBS finds valuable in its candidates (i.e. international work experience etc.)
VikramDadlaniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:10:07 AM)
What do I like best about London Business School? There are so many things! I guess it would have to be the Internationalism of the school.
RDXB (Sep 29, 2008 11:10:13 AM)
Amy: I want to know if work experience is a necessity. I am a doctor, recent graduate, with one year experience. I believe, for career switching, I need an MBA from the best school...my dream school...LBS.
lbsmba (Sep 29, 2008 11:10:36 AM)
Lisa: Re the essay - describe any experiences outside your home country; I have spent most of my life outside my country of citizenship. How do I approach this essay?
VikramDadlaniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:10:38 AM)
Linda, for improvement, space is something that could be worked on.
Aki (Sep 29, 2008 11:11:05 AM)
Linda: Are there any students or administration from MiF programme today?
Jason (Sep 29, 2008 11:11:16 AM)
Linda Abraham (Sep 29, 2008 11:11:51 AM)
Louise: Any special advice for those wanting to return to homes outside the EU?
LisaMortiniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:12:06 AM)
jJjaspirant: do visit our website http://www.london.edu/mba.html for more details or email email@example.com to book your class visit. Hopefully, they will be able to accommodate your needs. If you are on campus on a Friday, you can also attend our drop-in session at 3.00pm. Just turn up at Sainsbury reception and a member of the Admissions Team and current students will be there to guide you through the MBA Programme.
AmyHugoLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:12:35 AM)
Hi RDXB. Work experience is a necessity here - we ask for a minimum of 2-3 years of quality work experience before you start so that you have enough to contribute and you (and your fellow classmates) can really benefit from the programme. The average years of work experience is 5-6 years in our current class.
VarunD (Sep 29, 2008 11:12:54 AM)
Amy: How strong is a work experience in a Private Family Business Company for 5 years vis-à-vis work-experience in a MNC Global corporate/investment bank?
LouiseWeirLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:13:28 AM)
Hi Linda - From our employment data for the MBA 2007 class (our latest available data!), we can confirm that approximately 25% of students found permanent roles outside of the EU.
GraemeHarperLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:13:39 AM)
Swati, amongst other things, we are looking for strong work experience including evidence of progression and working in teams. We look for a good performance at undergraduate level and a good GMAT score (this year's average was 695). International experience is not essential but if you do not have this we would be looking for an "International outlook" i.e.: you may wish to pursue a career outside of your home country on graduation and in the future.
student08 (Sep 29, 2008 11:13:51 AM)
Louise: I have a technical previous professional experience as a field engineer working in the oil business. What kind of trend do you see for people with this profile after successfully completing the MBA program?
jas (Sep 29, 2008 11:14:02 AM)
Graeme: What significant skills would an MBA from LBS add to a candidate looking for a career change?
Linda Abraham (Sep 29, 2008 11:14:25 AM)
Claire, do you see any industries as being particularly active in recruiting LBS graduates and interns this year?
ClaireHewitsonLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:14:46 AM)
Hi Linda, there is a lot that you as a student can do while you are at London Business School in preparation for graduation. Career Services will support you in this and is integrated into your MBA programme. We will give you all the tools to help you develop your network. We will also help you with all your skills through our skills development programme. They will work with you on things such as developing an outstanding CV and cover letter that will help you market yourselves in a tough job economy. We also have Alumni Career Services that will support you when you graduate for life and offer you similar services.
LouiseWeirLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:14:55 AM)
Hi student08 - this can obviously depend on the industry you want to go into -previous students with this sort of background have either stayed in the oil and gad industry or taken roles within consulting or boutique finance houses.
aniruddha (Sep 29, 2008 11:15:09 AM)
Vikram: What would you give tribute to in making your application a successful one in LBS? The academics? Or the work experience?
SteveL (Sep 29, 2008 11:15:21 AM)
Louise: Can you please comment on chances of Asians to land a job in EU after completing the programme?
AmyHugoLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:15:54 AM)
Hi VarunD. We value diversity here at London Business School and those students coming from smaller family-run businesses will have something different to bring to the class - and they are very welcome. We also have a Family Business Club here at the School.
RDXB (Sep 29, 2008 11:16:13 AM)
Amy: Do you think the campus, and quality of studies, in Dubai -LBS is comparable or at par with the LBS main campus?
VikramDadlaniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:17:04 AM)
Aniruddha: London Business School looks at each application as a whole and focuses on academics, quality of work experience and extra curricular activities. In my case, I was particularly strong on the work experience front.
LouiseWeirLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:17:18 AM)
Hi Steve - in the UK, the government has just introduced the Tier1 visa - I'd suggest that you familiarize yourself with the regulations around working in the EU at the UK Government Home Office's website. Career Services will also run workshops aimed at helping you to secure visas upon graduation in the UK - depending on the visas situation at that current time.
student08 (Sep 29, 2008 11:17:22 AM)
Vikram: Is the internship a mandatory part of the curriculum?
LisaMortiniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:17:31 AM)
Hi Lbsmba: Good question. By definition, your experience is already very global. You could describe some interactions you've had in a multicultural team that had an impact on you or tell us how being away from you home country for so long has affected you and what you have learned from it. Tell us as well if you've had experiences in other countries, apart from your citizenship country and the one you currently live in.
VarunD (Sep 29, 2008 11:17:50 AM)
Lisa: Does the criteria for selection become stricter when the number of applicants are higher than expected in this present market scenario?
Linda Abraham (Sep 29, 2008 11:18:39 AM)
Claire: could you tell us a little about the programs that London Business School has to help first-year students obtain internships?
VikramDadlaniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:18:47 AM)
Hi Student08: The internship is not mandatory. However it is a great way to test out a particular area to confirm whether it is what you want. It is also a very good opportunity to secure a full time offer beforehand.
MatthewShenkmanLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:18:55 AM)
Hi everyone... I am Matthew, an MBA 2009. Happy to answer any questions...
Jason (Sep 29, 2008 11:19:10 AM)
Vikram: What is the best way to get in contact with leadership of student run clubs (industry club and consulting club)?
GraemeHarperLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:19:21 AM)
Jas, there are a few reasons why London is a good choice for a career changer. The two year format allows you the time to take more courses and put them into practice. This would allow you to specialize in a particular area e.g.: finance, marketing, strategy, if this was where you lacked experience and wanted to move into. The summer internship can allow students to experience an industry or job function that is new to them, and similarly the vast array of student clubs enable career changers to learn from and network with leaders and experts from industries that may be of interest.
Linda Abraham (Sep 29, 2008 11:19:37 AM)
Welcome Matthew. Could you tell us what you did before your MBA studies and what you hope to do when you complete your degree? Also, what is the focus of your b-schools studies?
Jason (Sep 29, 2008 11:20:11 AM)
Graeme: I have a bit of challenge with regards to my letters of recommendation. I've been working for 5 years (3 jobs). I don't really have the ability to ask my current manager or anyone at my present company for a letter because they don't know that I will be leaving. I was laid off from my previous job when they cut the sales force by 20%. Can I utilize my manager from my first job (worked there for 2.5 years) as well as a mentor from my undergraduate university that I still stay in close contact with?
MatthewShenkmanLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:20:32 AM)
Linda, before my MBA, I spent 8 years in the US Military after having graduated from Cal-Berkeley. I spent my summer at an Investment Bank and plan to continue in finance afterwards. I worked in New York this summer.
AmyHugoLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:20:35 AM)
RDXB, our Dubai Programme is top quality as well, in all aspects. It will be a very different experience from our full-time MBA Programme here in London but they will get to experience our London campus through their electives.
MatthewShenkmanLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:21:06 AM)
Linda, the focus of my B-School studies has been finance since I am a career changer.
However, I am taking many consulting courses this fall.
Linda Abraham (Sep 29, 2008 11:21:32 AM)
MatthewShenkmanLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:22:16 AM)
Well, in this current economic climate, one has to evaluate all options. I am also looking at consulting since I believe that would be very interesting as well. I am going to these classes- Market, Strategies for Growth & Global Business Leader. But I also think my finance specialty will come in very well for that as well since much of consulting is understanding the finances, etc.
Fons (Sep 29, 2008 11:22:21 AM)
Amy: Please define quality work experience.
VarunD (Sep 29, 2008 11:22:38 AM)
LisaMortiniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:22:41 AM)
Hi VarunD: Our criteria of selection will remain the same regardless of the market. We always strive to select the most qualified of applicants, with diverse backgrounds, interesting work experience and great personalities! We cannot emphasize enough how important it is for a prospective student to be the right "fit" for their business school.
costas (Sep 29, 2008 11:23:01 AM)
Vikram and Matthew: Could you describe how LBS improves quality of life (working hours, stress, and salary increase)?
GraemeHarperLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:23:32 AM)
Jason, this is not uncommon. Many of our applicants are in a similar situation. We would recommend trying to get a reference from a client or customer that you may work with closely in your present job, OR, your manager from a previous employer. The more recent the better. We would only encourage a reference from a university tutor if you were still in touch.
hurtig (Sep 29, 2008 11:23:41 AM)
Graeme: I heard that you are planning on taking on a fourth stream for next year; with the limited physical space available already, will this affect the format of the education (i.e. less lectures or later hours etc)?
VikramDadlaniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:23:44 AM)
Hi Jason: To reach out to student club leadership you have to go to out website and then go to Our Community>Students>Students Association>Student Clubs.
MatthewShenkmanLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:23:44 AM)
Costas: Well, since I went in to Investment Banking, quality of life is not in my vocabulary. But the salary increased significantly. Then again, after government service, how could it not?
LisaMortiniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:24:55 AM)
Hi Student08: Our GMAT range this year goes from 600 to 800, with an average of 694. It is perfectly acceptable to take the test again if you wish to improve your current score as we will only consider the higher score.
RDXB (Sep 29, 2008 11:25:10 AM)
Lisa: Does LBS have a Deferral option i.e. after enrolling, we can work for a year or two, with the enrollment safe in our hands, and then work with a new passion and confidence?
AmyHugoLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:25:55 AM)
Fons - We are looking for people who are driven and successful and have had strong career progression already, taking on additional responsibilities, strong team-working experiences and any leadership experience as well (or at least leadership potential). We are also looking for people with an international outlook who are going to thrive in a multi-cultural, multi-national environment.
LouiseWeirLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:26:09 AM)
Hi Student 08 - with the market downturn at the moment, Career Services is here to support all students and alumni (through our Alumni Career Services team) and has developed relevant support during this time.
holly (Sep 29, 2008 11:27:12 AM)
Louise: following up to SteveL's question - How hard is it for non-EU students generally to find EU positions?
Linda Abraham (Sep 29, 2008 11:27:46 AM)
Vikram & Matthew: Could you tell us a little about your Second Year Consulting Project? I understand you actually get paid for this work?
LisaMortiniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:28:16 AM)
Hi RDXB: We do indeed have a deferral system but not on a guaranteed or optional basis. You would have to request it formally and the circumstances and reasons behind your demand would have to be exceptional.
ClaireHewitsonLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:28:23 AM)
Linda: Our business development team is constantly speaking to companies about recruitment opportunities for both interns and full time positions. We have an online job posting board which again posts both internships and full time positions. We also have a Spring Industry Careers Fair. This is where a range of companies come onto campus and host a booth, giving students the opportunity to learn more about their companies. And lastly we have a drive called On-Campus Recruitment (OCR) which is specifically for recruiting both internships and full time opportunities. Each company comes onto campus and gives a presentation regarding specific opportunities in the company and also giving you an overview of the company. This will then be followed up with a series of interviews for the internship or full time position. Career Services again will support you to prepare you for these experiences in particular interviews, more information on the sector through our industry sector specialists and workshops on tailoring your CV.
VikramDadlaniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:28:33 AM)
Hi Costas: An MBA from London Business School opens many doors, leading to a good jump in salary and the opportunity for increased responsibility.....ultimately improving quality of life.
AmyHugoLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:28:54 AM)
Student08: It's important that we have a standardized system so that we can assess everyone equally. I think it may be worth your while either trying to sit down with your potential referee and explain why this is important or alternatively try and find a referee who is happier to help you.
LouiseWeirLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:29:16 AM)
Hi Holly - although a variety of global companies sponsor from the School, it is important to remember that without the correct permits and visas you would be unable to accept their offer of employment to work in the EU. Approx 70% of MBA 2007 students accepted jobs in the UK. However, where they will get support to apply for the Tier1 visa is from the individual company/UK Government.
MatthewShenkmanLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:29:18 AM)
Linda, you can get paid for this project... It really depends on if that is your goal. My group and I found a 5 Start Resort in Turkey that is currently having financial difficulties and is seeking turnaround management consulting. My group and I were more interested in getting a cool experience in a different region than money.
Jason (Sep 29, 2008 11:29:29 AM)
Louise: I know that the spouses of students are allowed to work while the student is enrolled at LBS. After graduation, the student is authorized to work for 2 years before applying for an extension. Is the spouse also allowed to work during this 2 year period after graduation?
GraemeHarperLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:30:07 AM)
Hurtig. That's correct, we will be taking on a 5th stream in the class of MBA2011. This won’t affect the number of lectures or the teaching hours. This has been in the School's plan for a couple of years and there is currently a building programme underway which will create new teaching and study space, enlarge the library and add new catering facilities.
jjaspirant (Sep 29, 2008 11:30:34 AM)
Graeme: I have a less than stellar undergraduate record from a good undergraduate program. My work experience is quite good, I have a good GMAT score (upper 700s), and international experience (growing up outside my country of origin, working in CA). Can these attributes make up for my undergraduate record?
LouiseWeirLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:30:39 AM)
Hi Jason – the Career Services team aren’t qualified to answer specific visa questions I'm afraid so I’m going to direct you to the Home Office website.
LisaMortiniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:31:23 AM)
Student08: We have 60 different nationalities represented in the MBA2010 class this year, with 91% of students being international. Diversity in backgrounds and nationalities is indeed a factor we look at carefully when reading applications.
AmyHugoLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:31:37 AM)
Hi Amit - anyone you know in a professional capacity would be a good option; perhaps a supplier or a client that you have worked closely with and that knows you quite well. Alternatively a past employer (if there is one) would be another option.
JD (Sep 29, 2008 11:31:37 AM)
Lisa: Noting Matthew's comments, I have served in the military as a commissioned officer for a number of years and the time is now right to undertake a transition to the commercial world. I think that an MBA is the right vehicle to do this. I would like to know what level of recognition is awarded to military service and whether my limited commercial experience will have an impact on my application. Thanks.
Jason (Sep 29, 2008 11:31:43 AM)
Great. Thank you, Graeme. That puts me a little more at ease.
Aki (Sep 29, 2008 11:31:57 AM)
Amy: Does it affect negatively if you have recently left your job to prepare for an MBA?
Jason (Sep 29, 2008 11:32:00 AM)
Thank you, Vikram. I'll check that out.
Dan (Sep 29, 2008 11:32:35 AM)
Matthew and Vikram: How integrated is the LBS curriculum experience? Are the same cases discussed in multiple classes or from different angles in the same class at least?
GraemeHarperLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:33:53 AM)
Jjaspirant: The Admissions Committee will look at your whole application as an entire package and it's true to say that areas of strength will help to balance out any areas of weakness. If there are reasons why your undergrad was not what you would have liked, you should make sure that you explain this where prompted in the online application.
poonam (Sep 29, 2008 11:34:21 AM)
Graeme: It’s difficult for me to get transcripts now. Are they required?
MatthewShenkmanLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:34:28 AM)
Dan: Yes, many of the classes integrate other courses and we do examine cases from different perspectives. A good example is the famed Honda case where we examined it from 3 points of view.
lbsmba (Sep 29, 2008 11:34:52 AM)
Matthew: Can one be part of a Summer Internship and the Entrepreneurship Summer school at the same time?
AmyHugoLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:35:17 AM)
Aki - we are looking for people who can manage their time effectively. It is almost a year from now that you would start your MBA so it may be difficult to justify why you left so early. You would need to explain very clearly what you plan to do this coming year.
Linda Abraham (Sep 29, 2008 11:35:24 AM)
Claire and Louise: From a career management perspective, what is the “London advantage”?
SteveL (Sep 29, 2008 11:35:51 AM)
Amy: Hello, may I ask what the expected enrollment for this year is?
LisaMortiniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:36:02 AM)
Hi JD: We value military experience very much as we are always looking for qualified, driven and passionate students from very diverse backgrounds. In the current class, we have military personnel such as someone who used to guard the Queen and a helicopter pilot, but also doctors, a cricket player and a classical pianist!
RDXB (Sep 29, 2008 11:36:13 AM)
Lisa: I'm looking forwards for some field missions with MSF (now as a doctor), but later on (after MBA from LBS) as a Financial Advisor and Administrative person. Would a field mission, suppose to Chiradzulu, Malawi, serve as a "quality work experience"?
MatthewShenkmanLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:36:14 AM)
Lbsmba, if you can work out the dates of ESS and an internship, one can do both, but this could actually be very difficult. Though I do know people who were able to make this happen.
VikramDadlaniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:36:27 AM)
Hi Dan: Adding to Matthew's comments, the first year of the MBA is focused on General Management courses and the second year you get a lot of flexibility to tailor your programme. Cases are definitely covered from different angles with an integrated approach.
lbsmba (Sep 29, 2008 11:37:00 AM)
Vikram/Mathew: Why did you choose LBS? What were your expectations with regard to the LBS MBA before joining the program? Do you think they are being fulfilled?
GraemeHarperLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:37:31 AM)
Poonam: Transcripts are required. At the application stage, it is acceptable to provide copies of your transcript(s), which can be scanned and attached to the online application. Original transcripts are required in order to receive an offer.
mercash (Sep 29, 2008 11:37:47 AM)
Lisa: What is really the "right fit"? Should the description be not more objective?
VarunD (Sep 29, 2008 11:38:04 AM)
Graeme: What is the ratio of applications to acceptances on average? What is the expectation this year?
MatthewShenkmanLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:38:15 AM)
Lbsmba, I chose LBS because I wanted to work in Europe and felt that an International MBA would help me in the future in other markets (not necessarily the USA). I have had many opportunities so these expectations have been met. I received offers on 3 continents for my summer internships.
student08 (Sep 29, 2008 11:38:32 AM)
Lisa: Can I receive further information in my home country, Caracas- Venezuela?
AmyHugoLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:39:02 AM)
SteveL: We are looking to recruit an additional stream this year whilst maintaining the quality and diversity of our student body. This has been in the planning process for a couple of years already and we feel that we have sufficient quality to take it forward now. This will mean an increase to about 375 students.
Fons (Sep 29, 2008 11:39:13 AM)
Amy: I have 7 years of progressive working experience and am currently working in the USA. What's the main difference between the full-time MBA, the Global Exec MBA and the MiF? What would be the best criteria to select any of those?
VikramDadlaniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:39:26 AM)
Hi Lbsmba: I chose LBS for Global reputation, Internationalism and location in London. I was so sure about it, that I did not apply to any other school. Despite such high expectations, I have not been let down.
LisaMortiniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:39:58 AM)
Hi RDXB: Yes, any work experience post-graduation, particularly such an intense experience overseas, would be considered. By the way, we have a few doctors in our current class and even a veterinarian!
VikramDadlaniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:40:05 AM)
The school is everything that I hoped for and more.
amit (Sep 29, 2008 11:40:37 AM)
Lisa: Does LBS have any exchange programme options with universities outside of EU?
MatthewShenkmanLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:41:16 AM)
Amit, I will be going on exchange to Sydney and had the choice of Barcelona and Cape Town.
Dan (Sep 29, 2008 11:41:48 AM)
Vikram and Matthew: I'm going to catch flak from Linda for this, but I recently finished reading Dan Gilbert's Stumbling on Happiness, and he suggests that the best way to know if you'll be happy in some circumstance is to find someone in that circumstance and ask how they feel. So...are you happy at LBS?
Linda Abraham (Sep 29, 2008 11:42:10 AM)
Dan is our literary chat regular. Dan, you should know that I am an avid reader.
GraemeHarperLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:42:49 AM)
VarunD: Obviously this differs from year to year. Last year was our second most competitive year ever with just over 7 applications to seats in the class. With the present economic conditions this could be another competitive year, although we will have more of an idea come the first application deadline on 14 October.
VikramDadlaniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:43:23 AM)
Hi Dan: Yes, I am very happy at LBS.
AmyHugoLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:43:37 AM)
Fons: there is quite a vast difference between all three programmes; in structure, content, experience and student profiles. It has a lot to do with your future goals (both short and long-term). I would suggest researching each programme thoroughly on our website and perhaps getting in touch with student's from each programme to get their perspective.
LisaMortiniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:43:43 AM)
Hi Mercash: Our students are so diverse that we try not to fit them into a box, yet they have commonalities: They are driven, smart, passionate, and very collaborative - it's very hard to define a person "objectively".
amit (Sep 29, 2008 11:43:51 AM)
Amy: How does the Adcom look at a candidate who has switched careers? Say career jump from a technical background to a Marketing or Finance career?
MatthewShenkmanLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:43:54 AM)
Dan, I am happiest with the friends I have made. I have truly best friends from Japan, Italy, the US, and Turkey here.
GraemeHarperLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:43:54 AM)
VarunD: Forgot to say that in a competitive year our advice would be to try and apply as early as possible.
ClaireHewitsonLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:43:58 AM)
Linda, I would say that the London advantage is because it is one of the largest centers for commerce in the world. It has more international banks than any other city and twenty percent of the world's cross border banking. 75% of the Fortune 500 companies have offices in London. The other advantage of the MBA course is the diversity with over 60 nationalities represented on the programme as well as world wide faculty, so it then puts a global perspective on your programme. Not to mention London is a very fun place socially! I moved here myself in May! London accounts for forty three percent of the global foreign equity market, conducts over half of all the European Union's investment banking services and is the only insurance centre where all 20 of the world's top 20 insurance and reinsurance companies have offices.
Jason (Sep 29, 2008 11:44:03 AM)
Graeme: I have a masters degree in addition to my undergraduate degrees. Will my undergraduate or graduate MBA have more weight? I pursued my masters degree while working full time, so that GPA is slightly lower.
Jason (Sep 29, 2008 11:44:23 AM)
Lisa: Where are interviews conducted? I'm in Arizona. Should I expect to travel to LBS for the interview or is something done a little closer to home?
LisaMortiniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:44:25 AM)
Sutdent08: Of course, do contact firstname.lastname@example.org with your request and they will forward you the documentation.
Dan (Sep 29, 2008 11:44:54 AM)
Matthew and Vikram: With London Business School's stellar finance reputation and the recent financial crisis in the US, I'm wondering if the case of Piper Capital's Worth Bruntjen has come up in any of your classes.
MatthewShenkmanLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:45:11 AM)
Dan: No, it has not. Sorry.
VarunD (Sep 29, 2008 11:45:21 AM)
Lisa: Can we send an application in hard copy or is it necessary to apply online only?
jas (Sep 29, 2008 11:45:41 AM)
Claire: is LBS a good place for someone looking for a career in technology vis-à-vis colleges like MIT, Stanford etc.?
LisaMortiniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:45:45 AM)
Hi Amit: yes, we do exchange with 34 partner schools on 5 continents; notably most top US schools and a growing number of schools in China. You can find the complete list on http://www.london.edu/mba/programme/exchange.html
GraemeHarperLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:46:02 AM)
All - if you haven't already, please check out our new video series "MBA TV" http://mbablog.london.edu/mbablog/mba_tv/index.html This first episode features the new class of MBA2010 as they arrive and begin Orientation.
hurtig (Sep 29, 2008 11:46:06 AM)
Lisa: Many European countries have a draft army, which you would join before university (age 19). The leadership quality from such a time period is very good, but would it be too old for the leadership essay to use, i.e. would more recent experiences be better mentioned?
AmyHugoLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:46:32 AM)
Amit - It is absolutely fine if you have switched careers, as long as there is logic and reason behind it (i.e. Where do you want to take your career in the future?). You will also need to show a general progression in your career as a whole.
Jason (Sep 29, 2008 11:46:38 AM)
Graeme: Is there any differentiation between applying in Round 1 versus Round 2 with respect to scholarships? If not, is there any benefit to applying in Round 1 instead of Round 2?
MatthewShenkmanLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:46:42 AM)
Hurtig, I feel that military experience is highly valued here -- not only by the admissions committee but also the professors.
Jason (Sep 29, 2008 11:46:52 AM)
Matthew: What is the grading system at LBS like? Is it letter graded or Pass/Fail/Honors?
LisaMortiniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:47:04 AM)
Hi Jason: Interviews are conducted by our alumni, wherever you are located at the time of application. We have a few people in Phoenix, AZ, that would be happy to help!
Aki (Sep 29, 2008 11:47:05 AM)
Claire, Louise: Does the career services also apply to MiF students? Or is it separate?
MatthewShenkmanLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:47:39 AM)
Jason, there is a curve -- 10% A+, 40% A, 40% B, and 10% other. There is a dean's list for the Top 10%.
GraemeHarperLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:48:20 AM)
Jason: We'll consider both degrees and will take into consideration the fact that you were working full-time while studying your masters, so I wouldn't worry about that.
LisaMortiniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:48:35 AM)
Hi VarunD: We only accept online applications I'm afraid; it makes it easier for you to complete and for us to manage!
RDXB (Sep 29, 2008 11:48:52 AM)
Matthew and Vikram: I have heard London is gloomy. Is it so? What about the sun, as shiny as in Malawi?
LouiseWeirLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:49:19 AM)
Hi Jas - We have a very strong technology student club on campus who run a series of events, including a career trek to Silicon Valley, UK company visits, i.e. Google, BT, and an annual conference to name but a few. In terms of recruitment we have companies such as Nokia, Cisco and Vodafone to name but a few recruiting at the School. Download a copy of the MBA2007 Employment Report at www.london.edu/recruiters where a list of companies can be found. We also work closely with our entrepreneurship faculty to connect with early stage technology companies and their VC backers - so yes London is a good place for someone looking for a career in technology!
Jeff Marcoux (Sep 29, 2008 11:49:21 AM)
Lisa: I am a recent graduate of a school in the States and I will have only been out of school for 1 year come time to begin an MBA program. How often are recent graduates accepted into LBS? Do you have any suggestions as to how I could make myself a stronger candidate? I am hoping to start an international non-profit dealing with economic development and alternative energies but am seeking an advanced degree first before pursuing this start up.
Linda Abraham (Sep 29, 2008 11:49:38 AM)
Amy: What financial aid do you offer international students? Does your loan program require a co-signor?
ClaireHewitsonLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:50:01 AM)
Hi Aki, Career Services is offered to all our programmes. Sometimes the mandatory skills development modules are slightly different because they are tailored to the specific course but all services can be accessed in some way.
MatthewShenkmanLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:50:04 AM)
Well, Madonna prefers London to Malawi, I guess -- just not for children. It rains a lot. It is dark. This is part of the reason for choosing Sydney for my exchange. But it never gets too hot either which is nice. It rains less than I expected to be honest.
VikramDadlaniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:50:49 AM)
Hi RDXB: While the weather may be gloomy at times, the student life at LBS is entirely opposite.
amit (Sep 29, 2008 11:50:59 AM)
Thanks Lisa & Matthew.
Dan (Sep 29, 2008 11:51:21 AM)
Vikram and Matthew: What marks an applicant as a good fit for LBS?
LisaMortiniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:51:35 AM)
Hi Student08: You should really tell us about challenging projects you've undertaken at work and problems/issues/conflicts you have resolved successfully. Tell us as well about any volunteer projects you may have led.
GraemeHarperLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:51:57 AM)
Jason: There's no difference with regard to scholarships whether you apply in round 1,2 or 3. There are very few scholarships available to people in Round 4. The benefit of applying in Round 1 over R2 is largely to do with timing and your ability to plan your finances and the move to London. If you apply in R1 you will hear if you have an offer on 18 December. If you apply in R2 you will hear on 31 March. So you have an extra 3 months+ to plan ahead.
AmyHugoLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:51:58 AM)
We have a great scheme with HSBC whereby our students can apply for up to £50,000 as a loan. This isn't a guaranteed loan and it is calculated on our student's pre-MBA earnings on a case by case basis. We also have a wide range of scholarships on offer - both merit and application based: http://www.london.edu.
SteveL (Sep 29, 2008 11:52:01 AM)
Lisa: What's your suggestions for applicants who have a poor GPA? Will you expect the applicant to provide reasons?
VarunD (Sep 29, 2008 11:52:16 AM)
Amy- if there is an increase in number of students, what will the student to faculty ratio be for class of 2009 onwards?
Dan (Sep 29, 2008 11:52:34 AM)
Graeme: What are the prevailing attitudes about careers/fields at LBS? It seems obvious from the outside that international careers are encouraged, but are others looked down on? Is finance preferred to international development? Equity analysis preferred to fixed-income analysis? That sort of thing.
MatthewShenkmanLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:52:36 AM)
Dan, I think a good fit is someone with some international or multi-cultural background and/or capable of articulating a desire to be a part of it. Typically, LBS likes applicants who they can see challenging fellow future classmates. And high GMAT scores too. J
costas (Sep 29, 2008 11:53:14 AM)
Vikram and Matthew: How can LBS help make your own business? Does LBS help you more to identify opportunities in the market?
Linda Abraham (Sep 29, 2008 11:54:03 AM)
Louise & Claire: Any special advice for those wanting to return to homes outside the EU?
LisaMortiniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:54:04 AM)
Hi Hurtig: We only consider work experience gained post-graduation. However, we understand how any military experience can shape your vision and affect you so feel free to mention it in your application.
VikramDadlaniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:54:10 AM)
Hi Dan: From my experience I would say - highly motivated, intelligent, collaborative and with international outlook.
poonam (Sep 29, 2008 11:54:25 AM)
Lisa: Is the full time MBA program equivalent to part time one?
amit (Sep 29, 2008 11:54:58 AM)
MatthewShenkmanLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:54:58 AM)
Costas- There is an Entrepreneurship Summer School and many entrepreneurship classes. Further, there is an LBS PE/VC Group that is very helpful in business plan development and funding too. I think this is a growing entrepreneurial school. But Stanford would probably be considered stronger, to be honest in that, but they probably offer less finance.
Jason (Sep 29, 2008 11:55:03 AM)
Perfect. Thank you, Lisa. Is it possible to get in contact with any of the alumni in Phoenix with any additional questions that I may have?
AmyHugoLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:55:06 AM)
VarunD: As I mentioned previously, the expansion plan has been in the running for a while so we have ensured that we will be able to accommodate this by recruiting more faculty and staff and increasing available space on campus.
Dan (Sep 29, 2008 11:55:12 AM)
Matt - about that curve...I've heard stories of schools giving the boot to the bottom 10% at the end of the first year. Does that sort of thing happen at LBS?
lbsmba (Sep 29, 2008 11:55:18 AM)
Vikram: I was wondering if you have attended sessions at the India Business Forum club? If so, could you please tell me a bit about it?
RDXB (Sep 29, 2008 11:55:21 AM)
Ok, thanks so much!
Linda Abraham (Sep 29, 2008 11:55:39 AM)
Graeme, Amy & Lisa: If you are looking at an application and the numbers and basic profile are in the ballpark for a London Business School student, what distinguishes an application that is accepted from one that is rejected?
GraemeHarperLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:55:43 AM)
If you are undecided now regarding which focus your should pursue, I would recommend keeping an open mind until you are on the programme as you will probably change your mind and your objectives several times during the course of the first year alone. Studying new courses, joining professional clubs, meeting with students from vastly different backgrounds will all present new and different opportunities.
MatthewShenkmanLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:56:21 AM)
Dan, I have not seen anybody get asked to leave. Most people arrive very motivated so this is a rare case. They need to keep high standards though.
VikramDadlaniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:56:43 AM)
Hi Costas: The network you build up from school can be very helpful in identifying business opportunities.
Jason (Sep 29, 2008 11:57:06 AM)
Claire: Is London Business School’s 2 year degree viewed any differently then the typical 1 year European business degrees by employers in Europe?
costas (Sep 29, 2008 11:57:36 AM)
LisaMortiniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:57:49 AM)
Hi Jeff: Our range of work experience goes from 2 to 12 years, the average being 6 years. We believe that you will learn as much from your peers as you will from our faculty so having sufficient work experience will allow you to feel comfortable enough to share your knowledge when participating in debates in class and gain the most our of your MBA experience.
VikramDadlaniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:57:54 AM)
Hi Lbsmba: Yes, The India Business Forum is a very active forum at school and provides great opportunities to liaise with top corporate firms in India.
LouiseWeirLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:58:24 AM)
Hi Jason - a 2 year MBA from London Business School is looked upon the same (if not better - we are ranked #2 in the MBA FT rankings!) as a 1 year.
Linda Abraham (Sep 29, 2008 11:58:31 AM)
Vikram & Matthew: The school web site touts the London Advantage. What does that mean to you as a student at London Business School?
jjaspirant (Sep 29, 2008 11:59:09 AM)
Lisa: Do you usually get more applicants in Round 2 than in Round 1?
LisaMortiniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:59:25 AM)
Hi SteveL: We do look at applications as a whole, so different elements may balance themselves. There is a question in the application where you explain the reasons why you think your undergrad results do not reflect your academic abilities.
AmyHugoLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:59:27 AM)
Linda: We take a very holistic approach with admissions and there are so many things to consider; it is very difficult to pinpoint one particular factor that would distinguish one candidate from another. What we can ensure though is that we run a very fair and thorough admissions process and that anyone who shows potential at the point of application will be invited to interview - we wouldn't want to miss a potentially strong candidate.
VikramDadlaniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:59:44 AM)
Lbsmba: There were two events in the last year, one in India and the other in London and both provided a great opportunity to network in India and seek opportunities.
MatthewShenkmanLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 11:59:58 AM)
Linda, there is an inherent advantage of being in a financial/ industrial center because you can meet and network where people are... This is an advantage that only New York can really rival in my opinion. I see people who work at banks all the time and am able to network which helps a lot in recruiting.
Linda Abraham (Sep 29, 2008 11:59:59 AM)
Linda Abraham (Sep 29, 2008 12:00:25 PM)
Vikram & Matthew: What has been your best class? Professor?
Linda Abraham (Sep 29, 2008 12:01:09 PM)
Graeme, Amy & Lisa: We are a 2 weeks away from London Business School's next application deadline (October 14th ). What advice would you have for applicants aiming to submit then?
ClaireHewitsonLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 12:01:18 PM)
Hi Linda, Career Services have relationships with many international companies based all over the world. Our Business Development teams continually meet with international recruiters who want to recruit talent from London Business School. In 2007, approx 25% of our graduates obtained employment outside of the EU. Obviously if you are returning to the country of your origin you will have the correct work authorizations.
VikramDadlaniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 12:01:24 PM)
Hi Linda: To me, this means living in an amazing city and being very close to recruiters. This was a huge advantage during the summer internship as well.
MatthewShenkmanLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 12:01:50 PM)
Advanced Corporate Finance with Ronen Israel was my best finance class. Statistics with Kristin Fridgeirsdottir was the most fun for a variety of reasons.
LisaMortiniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 12:02:06 PM)
Hi Poonam: Your experience in the Full Time will be different than in the Part Time as you will get more time to explore options, network and be active within the School community.
MatthewShenkmanLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 12:02:14 PM)
Oh, Capital markets with Mikhail Chernov was very good and he has helped me a lot personally.
VikramDadlaniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 12:02:46 PM)
Linda: My best class was Decision and Risk Analysis with Bert De Reck
GraemeHarperLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 12:02:48 PM)
Dan: We don't look down on any careers. Each and all are valid. Finance and consulting have traditionally been strengths of our students and alumni, but this has gradually been changing over the past 5 years with more and more industry players coming to us to recruit. We obviously attract students that are looking for an international career as building global business capabilities is one of the key strengths of the School.
VikramDadlaniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 12:03:11 PM)
And also Statistics with Kristin Fridgeirsdottir.
LisaMortiniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 12:03:18 PM)
Hi Jaspriant: It really varies every year - they are certainly very busy stages!
VarunD (Sep 29, 2008 12:03:24 PM)
Claire and Louise: Apart from investment banking, what other employment sector opportunities can London provide?
GraemeHarperLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 12:05:21 PM)
Linda: Advice for R1. Get your GMAT booked in if you've not done so already. Start working on those essays, they will take longer than you think! Contact your referees and request your transcripts. Finally, don't leave it until the last minute to click submit on the application form.
LouiseWeirLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 12:05:33 PM)
Hi Varun - London is home to all top consultancies, boutique consultancies, boutique finance houses, PE firms, and more and more industry companies are moving into London such as Microsoft, Google, Apple, LVMH etc. We are also less than an hour away from Reading - home to many technology companies.
Linda Abraham (Sep 29, 2008 12:05:37 PM)
SheilaKsp (Sep 29, 2008 12:05:43 PM)
Lisa: What would you say is the main difference between choosing Intl Business as a concentration vs. a more specialized one (i.e. Finance, Marketing)?
MatthewShenkmanLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 12:06:11 PM)
SheilaKsp: Your specialty should really take in to account what you plan to do. I feel like finance is good for just about everything and since I already had a lot of international management experience, I did not necessarily see that as helping me as much. Just think strategically about where you want to work. You don't need to pick a specialty until your 2nd year though.
deepa (Sep 29, 2008 12:06:12 PM)
Graeme: Can a candidate with no international exposure(working/living) apply? I don’t have such exposure, but do want it.
LisaMortiniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 12:06:16 PM)
Hi Jason: As they are so busy and the demand is very high, we cannot put applicants in touch with alumni, I'm afraid, However, do drop me a line at email@example.com and I'll be happy to put you in touch with currents students. Let me know as well if you have any specific interests and I can put you in contact with student club members.
GraemeHarperLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 12:06:34 PM)
Deepa: Yes, you can certainly apply. Many of our students arrived without any direct international exposure i.e.: they had not worked or lived abroad. However, there are other ways in which this can be gained such as vacations, or perhaps you work within an international organization which involves communicating with an overseas office or customers on a regular basis. If you don't have int. experience then you could mention your wish to work internationally post-MBA.
Dan (Sep 29, 2008 12:06:35 PM)
Varun and Matthew: Do the students in the MBA and MA Finance mix? Or are they kept separate somehow?
VikramDadlaniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 12:07:09 PM)
Bye everyone, I need to leave now as I have an Elective class - Options and Futures. The other Electives that I have taken this term are Negotiation and Bargaining, Global Capital Markets and Currencies and Mergers, LBOs and other Corporate Reorganizations. It was great chatting with you. Good luck with your applications.
MatthewShenkmanLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 12:07:10 PM)
Dan, they aren't kept separate but there is not a whole lot of interaction... different courses and schedules.
SteveL (Sep 29, 2008 12:07:43 PM)
Lisa: Thanks for comments. One other question. If Applicants' GMAT score only reached your minimum GMAT requirement, do you suggest the applicant wait for the next round and re-take the test?
GraemeHarperLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 12:07:47 PM)
Dan: MBA and MiF students mix within the elective classes. If you take any finance electives you will be amongst MiF students (as well as Sloan and EMBA students). The student clubs are open to all students from any programme so this is another area where you would interact, plus any campus or off-campus events such as Sundowners (the weekly recruitment/drinks event), the MBA Olympics, Tattoo, I could go on.....
lbsmba (Sep 29, 2008 12:07:50 PM)
Thanks for your time, Vikram.
LisaMortiniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 12:08:10 PM)
SteveL: We always advise applicants to send in their application when they are fully satisfied that they have submitted the best application they can do. If you wish your GMAT to be more competitive, by all means, do apply in the second round. We will only consider the highest score you obtained.
AmyHugoLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 12:08:11 PM)
Linda: We would hope that a candidate has already thoroughly researched the school with only two weeks to go!! There are various avenues available (website, blog , events etc) If they haven't yet had an opportunity to meet with admissions staff or students. We would encourage them to try and attend one of our events around the globe if they can - there are a fair few coming up: http://www.london.edu/mba/informationsessions.html or visit campus to attend a drop-in session on a Monday or Friday at 3pm. Otherwise, ensure you have read through your application numerous times (and get friends, family and colleagues to check it too!) and just make sure you are totally happy, and proud of what you are about to submit. Every part of the application is important.
Linda Abraham (Sep 29, 2008 12:08:51 PM)
Thank you again all for participating today. Special thanks to Graeme, Amy, Lisa, Louise, Claire and Vikram & Matthew for answering all these questions.
Jason (Sep 29, 2008 12:09:23 PM)
Thank you, Lisa.
LouiseWeirLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 12:09:25 PM)
Thanks Linda on behalf of the Career Services team – Louise, Claire, David & Nadim.
Linda Abraham (Sep 29, 2008 12:09:36 PM)
You're most welcome. Thanks again to the London representatives.
RDXB (Sep 29, 2008 12:10:06 PM)
Thanks for the help Vikram! Thanks Amy, Lisa, Mathew and Linda!!
MatthewShenkmanLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 12:10:47 PM)
Thanks again. Great questions. Good Luck with your applications!
AmyHugoLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 12:10:55 PM)
It's our pleasure - best of luck!!
LisaMortiniLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 12:11:05 PM)
Thanks to all and best of luck with your applications!
SteveL (Sep 29, 2008 12:11:06 PM)
Thank you all, it was very rewarding.
MatthewShenkmanLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 12:11:14 PM)
You can check me out on the blog. I get more scholarship money with greater head count! j/k. J
AmyHugoLONDON (Sep 29, 2008 12:11:39 PM)