How Siddharth joined his dream MBA program after rejection from lower-ranked schools

Some of you don’t even apply to top schools thinking you’d never get in, and the others think, “well if this lower-ranked school did not like my profile, someone like Tuck, Duke, or Columbia would obviously not.”

If you’re one of such students, think again. This story will make you question if that ‘gap in your profile’ that you’re worried about is significant enough for you to not take a chance at applying to top business schools.

For most MBA aspirants, receiving the dreaded “NO,” from a B-school would put a dent in their MBA dreams. Rejection is likely to push most into anxiety and despair.

But not for Siddharth.

Receiving the rejection letter from a mediocre B-school in Canada was a wake-up call for him. It was at that moment when his MBA journey took a sharp turn, in the right direction.

His story highlights the importance of nailing the application procedure right, irrespective of your GMAT/GPA scores.

A former PythaGURUS student and now an MBA graduate from his dream B-school, hear more from him.

Over to Siddharth.

My Journey from being rejected by a No-name school to getting into my Dream B-School

The single-line summary of my MBA journey – "It's not just about your GMAT or GPA scores, the entire application process is matters.”

Tragedy of Errors

I was keen on starting my MBA classes in the fall semester of 2017. I started my GMAT preparations way ahead. I sat for the test in December 2016 so that I could get started with the application process by Jan 2017. Thanks to my extensive preparations, I obtained a high score of 750 in GMAT. So far, so good.

I have to admit that I was focused on GMAT preparations that I failed to concentrate on the rest of the process. Looking back, this was my first gaffe, in a series of mistakes to follow.

I had sparse knowledge about the whole application process. I limited my applications, only to B-schools in Canada, assuming that I had a better shot at the Great White North. I wrongly believed that my low undergrad GPA scores wouldn’t suffice to open the gates for me at the top B-schools in the US.

I was confident (or should I say a bit reckless) that I undertook the application process, without guidance from a professional MBA admission consultant.

No surprises here – but I was proven wrong.

Even with my high GMAT score, I managed to receive the admit card from only one B-school on my list, that too, for a program that I wasn't interested in. The biggest blow was that – all the schools I had considered a safe choice had rejected my application.

To say that I was immensely disappointed is an understatement. This was when my friend convinced (or rather compelled) me to connect with Jatin of PythaGURUS. I am indebted to this friend and have been thanking him since then!

MBA Application Process 2.0

My revamped MBA journey began with my first call with Jatin. Till then, I had assumed that it was my low college GPA that was a hurdle to my MBA dreams. With Jatin’s help, I realized that GPA scores are just a minor part in the major scheme of things, and started focusing on other aspects of my profile.

To be truly honest, I was initially apprehensive of taking Jatin’s guidance as my bank balance was running low. Looking back, I realize that availing the services of PythaGURUS was one of the best decisions I have ever made.

Here is how I revised my second take on the application process, with Jatin’s help:

  • We took a systematic approach to the application process. I stopped fretting over aspects of my profile that was beyond my control (like my GPA) and started focusing on things that I could improve (my interview preparation, essays, resume, etc.)
  • With his numerous inputs and accurate insights, I revised my resume and essays from scratch.
  • Not just the application, but Jatin made me discover what I actually wanted to do and how the MBA program, I choose would help in achieving my goals and aspirations. He offered detailed insights for my short, vague inputs, helping me understand the costly mistakes I had committed earlier.
  • With his guidance and my renewed goals, we worked together to shortlist the best B-schools that would help me in landing the career that I desired.
  • I connected with alumni from B-schools that I was applying to and other former students of PythaGURUS. It helped me gain valuable insights regarding their application journeys and how to prepare for the admission interviews.
  • Revising my Essays

    I think the time I spent working with Jatin revising and reworking on my essays needs a special mention. He was always brutally honest with his comments, which made me work all the more.

    I consider him as more than my MBA consultant. He acted as my mentor, getting me to open about my dreams, aspirations. He helped me craft a compelling and authentic essay that reflected my hopes, highlighted my strengths, and showcased my zealous preparation.

    Mock Interviews

    Jatin and I had endless rounds of mock interviews, where we ran through all probable questions. I should say that this was the stage when I started to feel confident. By the time I had finished my interview preparation, "I had gone from being 99% nervous and 1% confident to 100% confident."

    Lessons from my MBA Experience

    • Remember that plans will change as you go through the application process. Schools that you initially planned to apply may drop-down in your list, as you revise your goals. Be ready to adapt and go with the flow.
    • Network extensively. Connecting with others, who have traveled the path, you are about to take helps you avoid costly mistakes.
    • Trust your mentor 100%, and don’t feel bad if you are asked to redo your essay for the 100th time.
    • And don't make the same mistakes I made. Instead of flying solo, connect with a professional MBA admissions consultant like Jatin, who can guide and mentor you every step of the way.
    • Some resources that helped me:

    I would like to conclude with my favorite Winston Churchill quote, “Success is not final, failure is not fatal – it’s the courage to continue that counts.”

    Don’t get dejected by a rejection letter, you’ve got better things waiting for you. Keep going and best of luck!