Ankit came to us with a GMAT score of 690, six-year-long work experience as an engineer, and a dream of getting admitted to a top business school.
While it might have been a complicated journey his roadblocks only made it more interesting. Ankit’s is a story that really highlights the importance of pre-MBA networking in the MBA application journey.
By dealing with roadblock in his resume, goals story, and essay, one-at-a-time, Ankit was able to convert McGill into an admit with a $16,000 scholarship!
Here is his story!
Ankit’s goals story was accompanied by another question, “Why MBA?”.
Since Ankit had started networking before submitting his goals story, he was asked the question, “Why MBA?” by several of his contacts at business schools but did not have a concrete answer to it. Thus, they suggested he give an answer in writing so that they could forward it and recommend him to the admissions committee in case they liked it.
Before giving any feedback, Ankit was suggested to go through the video library at Interviewninjas to have some foundation of how to begin answering the “Why MBA?” question as well as the short-term and long-term goals.
After giving Ankit an analysis of his goals story, we decided to have an on-call discussion to make sure his conviction was present orally as well as it was present on paper. This was an important step as he would have to discuss his goals story on his networking calls too.
Ankit also had the opportunity to meet McGill’s admissions director in Gurgaon and was met with some helpful feedback. She suggested that he chop down his resume as it was not an easy 2-minute read. This was difficult to do as he had already chopped down a very long resume to just one-page.
After a deep analysis of the resume, we were able to chop some more material off, and now had the perfect resume for the McGill application.
The major question that Ankit was struggling to answer was, “Why should a business school give HIM the admit?”.
While Ankit’s examples to portray various skills were on point, he was unable to convert those skills to reasons that showed him as an asset to the school. This is a struggling point for many MBA applicants during the essays. They know why they want to go to a school, or why they want to pursue an MBA, but they get stuck answering why a business school should choose them over the rest of the applicant pool.
He had great anecdotes that shed light on his leadership skills and interpersonal skill, but, he did not mention how those skills would be beneficial to the business school.
We then asked him to focus on what initiatives these skills could help him take during his time at McGill. Rather than providing a random skill-set, he needed to tell McGill how his skill sets would help him utilize their curriculum. For example, McGill allows students to complete a specialized project under a faculty member, called Practicum. Having leaderships would help Ankit to undertake this project with creative initiative.
Networking with current students at McGill and the school’s alumni opened Ankit up to the various projects and fragments of the curriculum that a student would excel in with his skill set. Without networking, and sticking to online resources only, Ankit would have come across this crucial information either lateor never.
After understanding the importance of such connections between skills and the business schools he was applying to, Ankit was much better equipped to write the essays.
Last time we connected, Ankit was happily and excitedly gearing up for his journey to ‘The White North,’ and we wish him all the best for it.