Monday, April 30, 2012

If Only I Knew....

Thank God the bschool application process is over and all the hard work paid off. I'm ready to begin the fun!! For those who are just starting out with their bschool process  here are some things I wish I knew before beginning this process and/or things that helped me throughout the process.

  • Add EXTRA money to whatever bschool budget you create. During my process so many other expenses came up I wish I would have put more away. I had to dip into my summer travel fund :/
  • Books- there are a lot of great books out there to help you with this process
    • Take a look at this post and comments.
    • MBA for Smarties- I found this book late in the game but the information & the tips it provided were great! Also, I enjoyed "the bottom line" at the end of each chapter. 
  • Apply to MLT. I wasn't in MLT but seeing some of the benefits Motown had access to, I wish had some of those opportunities. If you don't apply to MLT at least find a someone who is in MLT and latch on lol (that's what I did to Motown). 
  • School visits - If you have the means, visit each school before submitting your application. In almost all cases my visit allowed me to create a more impactful essay or  helped me knock a school off my list. 
    • Keep those relationships you make. Even though you may not end up at the same school, you meet some really ambitious and smart people during the application process. Keep them in your network, you never know when you all will cross paths again.
    • Get to know the admission officers.
    • Take students up on their offer(s) to read your essay!!!!! 
  • Essays- Find friends and people who have been through this process to help give you feedback.
    • Now not everyone's advice should be used. I had people read my essays but chose to not to use their recommendations because it wasn't me or I just didn't agree with what they said. 
    • START EARLY on the essays. With all the edits you may have to do, you will wish you  had more time.
  • GMAT- Do your best but it isn't the end all be all.  Now that a lot of schools are accepting the GRE take stab at the GRE if the GMAT isn't your friend. Make sure you tell a compelling story with every other piece of your application.
  • Have fun! It's a stressful process but you may learn something new about yourself ( I know I did).
Those who have completed this process , what advice do you have for those who are just beginning this process?

-Ms. HR


Thursday, April 26, 2012

It's Official ....

After A LOT of thought,  it's official I will be joining the class of 2014 at .......

This whole decision process was hard for me.  After all my spreadsheets of pros/cons and talking with my parents, friends, current students, and alumni I finally made my decision! I don't think there is a formula on how to pick which grad school to attend just make sure you make the decision for YOU. It's your investment and you will be spending your time there.

So you all probably wondering how I made my decision. Well here are the details......  This post mentioned some of the things I was thinking about. Here are some more details around them and also a few new ones.
  • Cost - This was a BIG thing for me. In the beginning I thought I didn't care about the price but seeing the real price tag, I realized that my debt tolerance isn't as high as I thought it was. 
  • My End Goals- Post MBA, I know I would like to participate in a HR rotational program and  eventually focus on talent management. I looked at which school would set me up to achieve that goal.
  • Network. Alumni are a piece of the network but what about my classmates I would be spending my time with.  Could  I see myself hanging with them in and out of the classroom. 
  • Fit and learning style. I'm taking two years to become the "broke college student". If I'm losing my income I want to be able to enjoy the faculty and my peers as well learn as much as I can. 
Throughout this whole process there was one school neck and neck and I had to go with my gut. Yes, I know some of you thinking what!?! You made this important decision based on a gut feeling ... and the answer is YES.  My gut has not let me down so far.  Quick mini story

Picking an undergraduate institution I went with my gut and LOVED every minute of the University of Michigan.  Fast forward to graduation time I had to make a decision on where I was going to work. Again I went with my gut, my current company was my lowest offer and they weren't negotiating  but something felt right about the company. I took it and haven't look back. So again when it is time to make this decision something felt right about it.
Now that my decision has been made its time to plan my exit out of the corporate world and gear up for school.  Good luck to those who are still making their decision!

-Ms. HR


Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Vote for Us!!

We have been nominated  for Best of Blogging 2011- 2012 by ClearAdmit, a leader in MBA admissions consulting. This year we are going for the win so if you enjoy reading our blog vote for us here.

-Fortune800mba Team


Monday, April 23, 2012

Beat the GMAT (BTG) Scholarship Annoucement!!


All -
Below are details about a a SCHOLARSHIP available to help YOU Beat the GMAT!! I wish I knew about this opportunity last year!! 
Good Luck!!!

Beat The GMAT (BTG), the world’s largest social network for MBA applicants, is now accepting applications for its seventh annual Beat The GMAT Scholarship Competition. This year, BTG will award scholarship packages for six winners, valued at more than $11,000. Each of the winners will receive one GMAT prep course, an admissions consulting package and a $250 GMAT voucher. BTG will accept applications until Monday night, April 23rd, and winners will be announced on April 30th.

“Giving back to the community is an important part of our mission,” says Eric Bahn, Founder of Beat The GMAT.  “We believe that our annual scholarship is an important initiative to help talented individuals achieve their dreams of going to an amazing business school.” 

Since 2006, Beat The GMAT has been able to distribute $193,000 in scholarships to MBA applicants.

The following companies made generous donations to make these prizes possible: Admit Advantage, Clear Admit, Kaplan, Knewton, Manhattan GMAT, Master GMAT, MBA Admit, mbaMission, Precision Essay, The Princeton Review, and Veritas Prep.  For a full list of prizes, click here.

To learn more and to apply for a scholarship, please visit:


Thursday, April 19, 2012

Response to "The Truth: The Consortium"

A few days ago I stumbled across this blog and post.

Anyone that REALLY knows me, knows that I cannot keep my mouth shut (maybe thats why I wanted to be a lawyer... a few years ago) and after debating with myself for 5 min, I responded.  For those of you who want the brief summary - these bloggers had some strong opinions on the Consortium (CGSM) and Underrepresented Minorities (URMs) that I strongly disagreed with.  Below is my response...feel free to make this a (healthy) debate

I understand some of the points that you are making but wanted to address a few of your points.  For some transparency I am also a URM, I applied to one Consortium school and the rest of my applications were non-Consortium.

To address your comment that“URM’s expect everything on a silver platter with the Consortium”, I recognize that both you and I probably know several URMs not only with the Consortium fellowship but other fellowships as well.  On the flipside, I know several URMS, one in particular from an ivy and another few from Top 25 UG’s who were rejected/waitlisted from CGSM schools.  I don’t think that most URM’s consider the fellowship as something OWED to them.  Rather it is treated as an HONOR.  This is why 2nd year CGSM’s mentor first years, they are leaders in their respective schools and why companies go after them. 

I like to think that the Consortium provides an opportunity.  If we look at the schools that are a part of the membership, bottomline they want to increase their diversity. Therefore, they provide a means to apply at a reduced cost and take on the ‘risk’ of joining the CGSM and evaluating the entire package. These schools see the upside of adding diversity to their class.  But by no means are they lowering their standards for admission.  Although people like you and I may be go-getters, I’ve encountered MANY URM’s stating that they would not dream of applying to top MBA programs and self-select themselves out of the process with sentiments like “I’m totally not going to get in” or “Applying would be a waste of money”….so in many ways I see the CGSM as an opportunity to take the gamble and (hopefully) increase odds.  Also, if you have encountered arrogant URMs what’s the problem?  I think this confidence/arrogance is the same across the board in every community.   I remember sitting at info sessions and waiting for interviews with very pompous people (maybe I was one of them? Lolol).  Sorry to break it to you…but that’s what Top Bschools attract!!!

Furthermore, I’m not naive, I’m sure all MBA programs (not just CGSM schools) are comparing URMS to other URMS rather than our white/Asian counterparts but please believe they are taking the crème de la crème of the URMS.  I have also spoken to a girl with a 630 GMAT getting the Consortium fellowship, but once again, that’s ALL I knew about that person.  I have no idea what her recommenders said, her essays, her interview style etc. and although most applicants are skeptical…we are ALL more than a number. 

In addition, applying to CSGM schools is also an option for EVERYONE (I’ve met both Asian and white CGSM fellows).  This past weekend at an admit weekend, the financial aid session was PACKED with all races/creeds/nationalities so EVERYONE cares equally about the cost of getting an MBA.  Perhaps URMS are more risk averse and decide to apply only to CGSM schools?  Perhaps our other counterparts are more prepared financially?  That is up for debate.  However, the CGSM mission is one I support regardless of what school I end up matriculating at and I’m happy for anyone that decides to go that route URM or non-URM.

Finally, to address a comment I read.  MLT and the CGSM provide a network and although its easy to compare them, they are two completely different organizations (which is another debate we can have at another time…this post is getting long).  Nonetheless  I wouldn’t say that either is a legup but just another means to navigate this process. They both present opportunities to meet other ambitious URMS that frankly I probably would never meet otherwise.   Coming from an area with few URM’s and a professional background where no one goes to b-school, every time I went to an MLT conference I felt energized and realized I wasn’t alone in the process.  Maybe this is different for people in major cities but for me that was one of best things about MLT.

Okay thanks for reading.  ::drops mic::

Let the debates begin.

P.S These are JUST my views and do not reflect other writers on this blog


Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Best of Blogging Nomination

We have been nominated  for Best of Blogging 2011- 2012 by ClearAdmit, a leader in MBA admissions consulting. This year we are going for the win so if you enjoy reading our blog vote for us here.

-Fortune800 MBA Team


Monday, April 16, 2012

Decisions Decisions

I'm writing this post knowing that I should be packing. I have a 6 AM flight and its 10 PM but choosing where to attend bschool is constantly on mind. I go to sleep weighing the pros and cons, I wake up thinking about them. I keep on thinking what really matters to me?

I have been fortunate enough to work for a company that allowed to me explore and try different project throughout my career.  After working on a few projects I knew that HR was the direction I wanted to go in. That's my main purpose for going back to school, getting the knowledge I need to be successful in managing HR. Learning is #1 in my book.  So how do I learn? Which school caters more toward my learning style? 

A job post MBA. My target companies recruit at both schools. Job placement stats are also good.

Fit. I have the type of personality that I would enjoy any place I went. So when looking at fit its hard for me to say because I truly believe I would have a fabulous time at either place.

Network. Isn't this the reason why schools are picked? The network that you build and the alumni base. I think the only way I could see how strong the alumni network was reaching out to different alumni.

Now onto the bschool debt. I remember doing an interview earlier on in my bschool process with The question was "Does cost play a factor in where you’re applying?" My answer was "Cost is a factor but at the same time it’s not really. If I get into my top choice school I doubt I would turn it down due to cost." I'm at that point where I'm really analyzing the debt I'm going to go into. I've heard some people say "oh its school debt so do worry about it" but are you going to be paying back my loans? Probably not, so therefore I have to worry about it. Bschool is an investment, I just want to make sure I look at everything.I thought about the debt before I applied and I honestly thought I would be okay taking out whatever the cost. Looking at the loan repayment calculators and my financial award letters has me really thinking.When I graduate I want to be able to take a job because its a perfect fit and not because they were the highest bidder. ( after negotiations of course lol )

Decision day is quickly approaching for me! Time to pray, think, and pay a deposit.

-Ms. HR


Friday, April 13, 2012

Stay Motivated


A little less than a year ago, I decided to do a few free consulting reviews to evaluate my profile. I had a few nice conversations (I didn’t end up using any of these consultants) and then I had a particularly interesting conversation with one MBA consultant. Pretty much the conversation was like this:

Consultant: Whats your GPA and GMAT?
Me: X.XX and XXX
Consultant: Did you get any C’s?
Me: Yes
Consultant: Ohhhh okay wow what schools do you want to apply to?
Me: blah blah blah
Consultant: Well just be prepared to not get into any schools next year with that GMAT score and GPA.

I abruptly ended the conversation and was absolutely devastated. I wasn’t sure what to do. Do I expand the list of schools I’m applying to? Do I take the GMAT for the third time? What will I do if I get rejected from everywhere?

Well after thinking about…I took a step back. Needless to say I ended up not using this consultant. Instead I relied on my network to review my essays, students/MLT to give me advice, (an organization that reviews essays ethically and donates to charity) and on a few books I read. Now, I’m not saying that MBA Admissions Consultants are not helpful and they definitely have way more success stories than any other resource, but just make sure you pick ones that are not discouraging. And with that said I just let that consultant be my motivator.


P.S I'm joking with that picture :-)


Wednesday, April 11, 2012

March Updates Part 2

Like Motown mentioned March did move quickly!  In fact since I submitted my applications who knows where the time went. Also, who knew deciding on what school to attend would also be a challenge. I'll save that story for another post.

CONGRATS MOTOWN on some AMAZING school choices!! I'm interested in what school you pick! Expect a visit from me wherever you go. Here are the details of the schools that I applied to.

Johnson/MILR (Cornell) - Accepted
Owen (Vanderbilt)- Accepted
Broad (MSU)- Accepted
Ross (Michigan)- Waitlisted
McCombs (UT- Austin)- Denied

Congrats to everyone! No matter what the results are this bschool process is no joke so congrats on going through it.



Tuesday, April 10, 2012

March Updates


So as expected, March was a month that moved SO FAST. I can’t believe how quickly the time passed from March 15th and onward. Admittedly, I was torn sharing how everything ended up, but I figure that's what readers want to know huh? Also, for people applying next year maybe I can provide some advice??   So just for the record, this is here was my rundown:

Ross – Admitted
Fuqua – Admitted
Kellogg – Admitted
Wharton – Admitted
HBS - Waitlisted

I’m so blessed to get through this process with great schools as options.  Thank you God!  I’m still torn and wish I could divide myself in many pieces to go to all my schools. I’ll be attending two admitted student weekends and ultimately deciding at the end of the month.

Congrats to all the admits!! Good luck to all the waitlisters! And to those that were not admitted keep trying!

P.S I LOVE the Tiger Woods fist pump...not to mention the Masters just started (when I wrote this post)


Friday, April 6, 2012

Checking In


I realize that we haven’t written in a while but we are STILL HERE. We have been busy doing exciting things like going/planning to go to admitted student weekends and deciding between schools. You will soon hear more from us but just be sure that if WE can do it…you can DEFINETLY get through this process too.

Enjoy your weekend!


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