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Chat with Admissions

June 11, 2008—9:00-10:00 AM CST

Joanne: Good morning, everyone, thanks for joining us for this morning's chat! We'll get at 9am CDT. You can feel free to post questions and we'll start answering at 9.

Joanne: Hi all! We will begin the chat in just 5 minutes. Thanks for posting your questions, and we look forward to talking with you.

Rose: Good morning, and welcome to our admissions chat. We welcome questions of all sorts, but also want to encourage those of you who are interested in the reapplication process to ask your questions. Rose

Joanne: Good morning! We're looking forward to hearing from you on today's chat.

Kurt: Good morning, thanks for joining us in the chat I look forward to answering your questions.

Nate: Hello, everyone! My colleagues and I are excited to answer any questions you might have about the application process. All the best, NATE

NYCAd__Guest_:Can you please let us know when the application for the Fall 2009 admission will be available?

Joanne: Our application will be available online in mid-July.

oNeMoReChAnCe__Guest_: How many percent of people are getting an invitation for an interview? I had an interview invitation last time, does it mean that I qualified the certain standard?

Rose: Typically, we interview approximately 50% of the applicant pool (plus or minus). It is the first hurdle where the admissions committee is interested in exploring your candidacy further.

oNeMoReChAnCe__Guest_: Is there difference between a re-applicant who had an interview last time and had not?

Rose: Yes, since the interview is required for admissions. The applicant pool is extremely competitive and unfortunately we are not able to interview all the qualified candidates. We focus on candidates who we believe the admissions committee is a good fit for our program.

nolan__Guest_: In terms of work experience, how does starting/owning your own small business impact an application?

Kurt: Nolan, owning a small business can be terrific experience and can certainly differentiate you in the application process. At the end of the day however we are more interested in how you connect the dots. Essentially how you communicate the relevance of that experience to getting an MBA from Chicago GSB, and your future goals is what is most critical.

Faust__Guest_: I am presently working in Dubai and applied as an international applicant in round-3 ... I was pretty confident about my application and cleared the Mid-Decision followed by a successful interview; however i was denied admission in the end. I just wanted to know whether or not round-3 itself is more competitive or accomodates lesser number of candidates/seats (especially for international applicants)?

Rose: Round 3 is definitely more competitive since we have fewer slots available at that time, and we'll be looking to bring in specific types of candidates. There are always slots for outstanding applicants, but admissions has to be highly selective at that point, weighing the number of waitlisted candidates and their quality along with Round 3 applicants.

Nash__Guest_: What are the resources Chicago GSB offers for students interested in entrepreneurial venture?

Nate: The GSB has many resources available for students interested in entrepreneurship. The Polsky Center holds labs and the New Venture Challenge, an annual competition through which business plans are submitted. There is an entrepreneurship concentration, of course, and faculty serve as a wonderful resource. Alumni and Career Services can also offer support and engagement.

fravush__Guest_: I am above 30 and does my age impact the evaluation process? To what extent does age of the applicant impact the admissions criteria?

Joanne: Age is not one of the determining factors when we review applications for admission. Rather, we're more interested in and look more closely at your work experience, including increasing responsibilities and leadership opportunities, and academic preparedness. These factors, coupled with the other components of your application such as letters of recommendation, activities, etc., are just some of the pieces we use when evaluating candidates.

Gv__Guest_: Hi Rose! Gv from India - I am interested in pursuing Operations Management - will I fit GSB?

Rose: Absolutely. Chicago GSB does not have any one professional profile that we seek. We have a strong operations and management department, and I think your perspective would enrich the classroom experience greatly.

pre_GSB__Guest_: Hello Joanne,I am a GSB aspirant for 2009 and I am from India. There are rumours doing rounds here that the Indian/IT/Male (Work-ex of 3 yrs) profile forms a really big pool of applicants to the GSB and that the chances for one (with such a profile) getting in are weighed heavily on GMAT scores (pluses of 730). Your comments on this.

Joanne: Hi there. You are right, your profile does match a large portion of our applicant pool. However, the GSB strives to bring diversity in all its form to each of our incoming classes. We admit those students who we feel are the best match for the GSB so that the class is full of diverse and interesting people from all over the world.

Jeremy__Guest_: I finished my bachelor's degree in May but I have not had any math classes in 6 years. Is the GMAT required? I am worried that I might not do so well and it will hurt my application.

Nate: The GMAT is required for admission to Chicago GSB. While the GMAT measures quantitative and analytical aspects, one needn't major in math to perform well. Please bear in mind the GMAT is only one factor in our evaluation process. Hope this helps!

Nash__Guest_: When is Chicago GSB releasing this year's questions?

Joanne: This year's application and essay questions will be available online in mid-July.

Faust__Guest_: Secondly, I applied with a TOEFL score of 104 which is just one point below the required score. Should this score have affected my decision?

Kurt: Faust, The score could have affected the decision but certainly it would not have been the lone reason for it. The TOEFL is one data point in the entire application. We view the TOEFL in the context of all the other material provided and would never base our decison solely on a test score.

Claudio__Guest_: I`d like to know why there are so few students from South America. Is it because they don`t try it very often, because they are not so well qualified or because you want to balance classrooms with students from all around the world?

Rose: Yes, we want to balance the classroom experience by having students from all over the world, but Chicago GSB is definitely working to increase the number of students from South America in the coming year. Our incoming South America class will be the largest to date.

G-95386301__Guest_: Do you encourage re-applicants?

Joanne: Yes, we encourage those students who were denied admission to re-apply to the GSB if they are still interested in the school.

George__Guest_: Hi I am based in the UK and interested in a doing an MBA in the States. Do you have, or have you had many UK students? If so, have they been able to continue their working careers in the States or have they moved back to UK?

Nate: We have had a fair number of students from the United Kingdom. Some have chosen to remain in the States for their post-MBA employment, while others have returned to Britain. It depends on what you are looking to do. Career Services does a great job of assisting our students throughout the recruiting process. Hope this helps!

Jimmy__Guest_: Well, why should I consider Chicago GSB? What differentiates you? What do you offer me that I cannot get anywhere else? I am a prospective student from Australia.

Rose: Wow, that could take some time to answer; but let me give it a shot. Chicago believes that no two students come from the same background nor have the same aspirations. We have a "challenge everything" culture, where the power of ideas and debate is at the center of the learning process. Check out our viewbook for more on this. Chicago has the most flexible curriculum of any program, with only one mandatory class (LEAD). Beyond that students are given a framework of foundation courses that they must satisfy during their six quarters, but can take them at the level, time and location that makes best sense for them. I would encourage you to come to our information session in Australia this fall.

sharad__Guest_: Will the process for reapplicants be different than first time applicants?

Joanne: No. The evaluation process for both first time applicants and reapplicants is exactly the same.

G-95386301__Guest_: Do you look at a totally new application form from the re-applicant or do you evaluate the person based on previous and current applications?

Rose: We look to the current application to provide all the information we need. We may go back and review quickly the old file, but that is typically not the norm.

NYCAd__Guest_: Do you accept any other forms of recommendation letters? (i.e. via regular mail or via a 'recommendation center')

Joanne: We will accept letters of recommendation via regular mail. However, our preference is for all letters of recommendation to be submitted through the online system.

G-95386301__Guest_: Would you look at significant improvements between a R3 applicant and a R1 re-applicant since there is only 6 months gap between the 2 rounds? If yes, what areas should one focus on?

Nate: We certainly would look at improvements between a Round Three applicant and a Round One re-applicant. Because you have several months to work on your application, I would encourage you to reflect on the reasons for pursuing management education at this point in your career and why/how the GSB might be a good fit for you. In addition, stay involved in our online discussion forum. Hope this helps!

Alex_Diaz__Guest_: Hi, My name is Alex Diaz. I was a R2 applicant and I am preparing to reapply R1 for 2009. I have a question regarding the re-applicant's evaluation process. Is it the same as for first time applicants or does it somehow differ? Would being a re-applicant have an impact on the Adcom's interest on my profile and application based on the fact that they have already denied my admission or will the Adcom take a thorough and fresk look at my application again?

Kurt: Alex, as a re-applicant who applies within two years of their original decision we will look at your prior application in the review process. We do not spend a great deal of time looking at your old application, rather we use it as a baseline to see how you have grown since the time of your original application. With this in mind, your new application should be written from the standpoint that we already know something about you and we are trying to determine how you have reflected on the decision and grown from it. Many re-applicants fail to take this direction and simply rewrite everything that was in their original application, and they are surprised when the decision they recieve the second time was no different from the first.

Pete__Guest_: How much difference does the round you apply in make?

Nate: Hello, Pete: We encourage you to apply early in the process. That being said, one shouldn't sacrifice application quality just to beat a deadline date. Hope this helps!

G-95386301__Guest_: Would you look at new references or can we retain the ones submitted earlier?

Joanne: We encourage re-applicants to submit new letters of recommendation. While we will retain your previous application on file for two years, much will change for you from one application to the next. Therefore, we suggest you treat the reapplication as if you were applying for the first time; your letters of recommendation can be from your prior recommenders, but the letters should be rewritten and reflect all changes and updates from previous letters.

Shane__Guest_: I am Shane and I am a 22 years old senior finance major who is currently residing in NY. My goal is to get in to Chicago GSB because it has one of the best economics program in the country; however, at 22, I don't have much work experience. How do you evaluate a younger candidate versus a much more experienced and older? Also, do I have a chance?

Rose: Chicago GSB welcomes applications from candidates earlier in their career. Applicants with less than two years of experience are looked at in a slightly different way -- we look at the leadership activities you had in college along with the strength and impact of your internships. Self awareness and maturity are also critical factors. We admit a number of students each year directly from college, so I would say -- nothing ventured, nothing gained.

marceji__Guest_: Hello! My name is Marcela and I am planning to apply this fall to the GSB MBA. I was wondering when will the essay questions will be available?

Nate: Hello, Marceji: The 2008-09 admissions application will go live in mid-July. All the best!

G-95391449__Guest_: Joanne, I would like to know the range of GMAT scores you have for your actual accepted class, not only the average, but the whole range. Thank you

Joanne: Our statistics for this year's class are not yet complete. Our most recent range of scores is 640-760.

Jatin__Guest_: Hi. Thanks for setting up this chat. How do you define leadership? What leadership traits do you look for in an applicant?

Rose: My first question to you, is how do you define leadership? That's the critical factor. Leadership is influencing and mentoring others, it is facilitating a project, it is being the cheerleader on the team -- it is so many things. We will look for you to identify the leadership elements in your application that are important to you.

Saikat__Guest_: Hi Joanne/Rose, Good Morning. I am Saikat, a 2nd round applicant this year. I got an interview call, and unfortunately did not convert it. Had to rush this year due to time constraints, and possibly messed up on a few things. However, Chicago is my dream school and I would be reapplying and want to make sure that I do the right things this time. My question: Is it possible to get feedback on my previous application from the adcom, with some suggestions on areas I can improve to make my application stronger this time?

Joanne: Unfortunately, we do not provide individual feedback on applications. We encourage you to look over your application on your own, or perhaps with a friend, and see where you might strengthen different aspects of your application. You might even consider doing a mock interview with a friend or colleague to strengthen your interview skills too.

oNeMoReChAnCe__Guest_: I have 710 GMAT and 2.4 GPA (I know it is very low and it is 8 years ago and I can do nothing about it to change the grade) and strong work experience backgrounds. In order to compensate my low GPA, I am planning to take the GMAT exam again to break 750 and take the college level course which is Accounting Principles this summer. Because I have to work, I can only take one course prior to submit the application. One course would be ok or is there any other advice to compliment my weak academic performance during college?

Kurt: I think you are taking all the right steps to improving your situation. Other things I might recommend is use your recommenders to address your analytical and quantative skills. That can go a long way in helping us to understand your professional strengths and how they may translate to this atmosphere. I would also utilize the optional essay to address why your grades were so low, and what in retropect you might have learned from this. We recognize that people mature (we hope) and that they learn from thier mistakes. Help us to understand that you are indeed such a person and you have grown significantly since that point in your life. All of these things should help you put your best foot forward.

Matt__Guest_: Can you discuss how the economy effected the number of applications you saw this year? Are you expecting a similar situation next year?

Rose: While the number of applications was up according to GMAT test taker data, we believe that the biggest increase will occur this next year since the biggest hit of the downturn happened late in the fall.

G-95421538__Guest_: Question about the essay topics for Fall 2009 admissions, will the questions be the same as those which were used last year?

Nate: The essay questions change every year. The 2008-09 admissions application will go live in mid-July, so stay tuned. All the best!

JimmyLux__Guest_: Question: I am a first time applicant interested in applying for full time MBA entering Fall 2009. What would you recommend as the top 3 things I should be focusing on at this point?

Joanne: I think the answer to this question is different for every person, but there are things you can do over the next few months to prepare yourself. Consider making a visit to the GSB and familiarize yourself with the school through our website or our students/alumni. The application process is very much about self-reflection, so spend some time thinking about your goals and your reasons for wanting the MBA and jotting down some notes in preparation for the essay questions. Finally, prepare for the GMAT; give yourself time to re-take the exam if you're not satisfied with your first attempt so that your score reaches the GSB admissions office in time for our deadlines.

mbaclass_2011__Guest_: Hi Rose. I am interested in applying to GSB for Fall 2009 and would like to know if there is an advantage in applying in the first round of admissions as compared to the second round?

Rose: There is a slight statistical advantage to applying in Round 1 since there are fewer applications and we have not made any decisions -- our class is wide open. Also, you have a longer window to be considered, have the opportunity to land on the waitlist (and be admitted in Round 2) and get your decision before the winter holidays.

G-95386301__Guest_: What aspects of the application should a re-applicant focus on?

Kurt: A re-applicant should approach the application with a strategic mindset and certainly put the same time and attention into it as they did their original application. The key distinction between a first time applicant and re-applicant is we already have a context from which to look at your application. Therefore, you should be able to demonstrate that you have reflected on your original application and developed since that point. You should also be able to address a strong fit with the school given you have thought about it for two application cycles.

Tariq__Guest_: Hello Rose, are the waitlist results announced today?

Joanne: We continue to maintain an active waitlist. We have released some admissions decisions today, and anticipate making more decisions every two weeks from this point on.

G-95386301__Guest_: Does taking the GMAT again help and does one need a score above 700?

Nate: One doesn't need to score above 700 to be admitted. Our mid-80 percent range is roughly 660-760. If you feel a higher score would enhance your admissions application, then by all means take the test again. Please bear in mind, though, that the GMAT is only one factor in the evaluation process. All the best!

KVancina__Guest_: Good morning! I was wondering if there's a certain amount of work experience that you are looking for in applicants?

Nate: Hello, KVancina: We do not require a certain amount of work experience. What we see as members of the admissions committee covers a wide range. If you are a recent college graduate, my colleagues and I encourage early career candidates to apply. Hope this helps!

AA__Guest_: Hi Rose, I am from IT consulting and have been working for an Indian IT consulting company for last 7 years now. Have worked for different clients though. Would switching my job and working for another employer add any value before I reapply ?

Rose: That's completely up to you. Admissions does not have a bias for students who work for multiple companies. If it makes sense for you to gain a different experience prior to the MBA than you should do it. If you're doing it only to be admitted to a program, I would not.

AngelaC__Guest_: I am very curious about the slide shows. I think this is a great idea, and quite new and also unique from other grad schools. How is the admission office evaluating these slides?

Joanne: Yes, our PowerPoint requirement has been a great addition to the GSB application and we've gotten great feedback about its inclusion. We evaluate these solely on content and are looking to see how our applicants display their creativity and how well they use the format to supplement their applications by giving us a glimpse into their lives in ways that are not possible through other parts of the application. There are no right or wrong ways to do this, and we've been so impressed by how students have used this tool to show their uniqueness and individuality.

Adam_G__Guest_: I am interested in finding more information about MBA specializations; i.e. average starting salary, career paths, job description, etc... Do you have any recommendations as to how to find solid information? Thank You

Joanne: You can find this information right on our website at http://www.chicagobooth.edu/fulltime/career/index.aspx. Just scroll down a little to open up last year's Employment Report and other statistics.

PC__Guest_: Hello Ms. Martinelli - I'm intending to reapply the fall after interviewing this last year. I'm curious, if my application makes the cut, will I be re-interviewed? Or would the previous year's interview be used for assessment? Thanks so much for this information.

Nate: Hi PC: Since this year would constitute an entirely new application for you, we would require you to interview again (if invited). Hope this helps! All the best, NATE

Pete__Guest_: Without individual feedback, how can I best assess what improvements will make the largest impact (GMAT, comm. involvement, career)?

Kurt: Pete, having provided feedback to people throughout the course of my career one thing has been made very clear to me in this process, most people have a good idea of where they fell short before I ever talked to them. Chicago is very transparent in how we evaluate people and we freely discuss the process through chats, the website, presentations etc. With this in mind look at your old application again, read it, think about it, and then look at all of the informaiton we provide on the process. From there you should be able to develop some specific questions which you can present to the admissions committee through the various channels I mentioned.

oNeMoReChAnCe__Guest_: Can I submit totally brand new application and essays as a re-applicant?

Nate: All candidates, first-time and re-applicants, submit new application materials. Hope this helps! Best, NATE G-

95357092__Guest_: Do you anticipate it being tougher to get in this year than in previous years, due to the slew of job cuts and problems with the economy?

Rose: Tougher on admissions, not necessarily tougher for the applicant. What will be critical is that you do your self assessment and really do your homework in preparation for the application process. At Chicago GSB, we focus on applicants who have a track record of success, but also understand how they fit into the broader world/community. It's a very holistic process, so we want to know you on a number of broad dimensions.

AngelaC__Guest_: Good morning staff and fellow prospective students. I heard that many schools place a quota on international applicants acceptance. Does Chicago also place a limit on admitting students from other countries other than the U.S.? I am a Canadian citizen and currently working in Asia. Will I be applying as a prospect from Canada or Asia? (I'm not sure if either one would lower my chance?)

Rose: Chicago does not have quotas of any type, but we do have goals that are set forth by our leadership. We count a person an international students based on the country of citizenship (not where an applicant works). Diversity is a critical element of the learning experience at the GSB, so we factor in background, citizenship, industry, gender, etc. into our decision process.

Ivor__Guest_: Hi Rose. What was the response from applicants to the new powerpoint question? Do you think the presentations were interesting enough to keep it for the next application season as well?

Rose: The white space presentation was a very valuable evaluation tool for admissions, helping us to learn more about a candidate than we had gleaned from prior applications, so the plan is to retain it in our new applicaton (slightly tweaked).

Monty__Guest_: If like last year, the R1 application deadline is Oct 17, does it mean you don't open the applications until then. The reason I ask is whether you have a set quota for each round, hence is it advisable to apply early in R2 rather than late in R1; thanks

Kurt: Monty, our deadlines are hard and fast we do not have a rolling process and therefore do not look at any applications until the deadline. In addition we do not have any quotas in place on any level of the review process. The rule of thumb in applying is apply when your application is at its best. If you feel like you are cutting corners to get an application in for a specific deadline you are doing yourself a disservice. A bad application is going to be a bad application regardless of the round you choose.

ZENDANE__Guest_: How do we address the recommendations for the reapplication? If it is the same recommenders, do they need to talk about the progress the candidate has made in the last year? Can it be different recommenders? In this case, do they have to address the issue of reapplication?

Joanne: We encourage reapplicants to submit new letters of recommendation. You may use the same recommenders, but they should submit new letters for you that address any changes, increases in responsibilities or updates. You can also choose new recommenders; the choice is yours. In any case, recommenders do not have to address the issue of you re-applying to the GSB.

cgsbprospect8__Guest_: Hello. I am wondering if the FT program will offer "Decline Feedback" sessions as it did last year. Thank you.

Nate: Thanks for writing! We no longer offer feedback to denied applicants due to resource constraints and policy. Please let us know if you have any questions about the evaluation process. All the best!

oNeMoReChAnCe__Guest_: For re-applicants which round is preferable?

Kurt: I would recommend the first or second round, do not wait until the third. Our expectation is if you are re-applying you are probably pretty committed to being here, therefore if you wait a long time to re-apply the committee can not help but ask why. Certainly take the time you need put together your best application but it is usually a good indication to the committee that you are committed to the GSB if you provide a complete and compelling application earlier in the process rather than later.

Ivor__Guest_: Hi Rose. What was the most common reason for denial of admission for waitlisted candidates of last year?

Rose: Chicago GSB uses the waitlist to gauge the pool until the next round of applicants can be assessed. So the quality of pool probably was the biggest reason for a waitlisted candidate to be released.

Jonathan__Guest_: Good morning- I guess I'll start off. I'm applying in First Round for Fall '09 admission and want to schedule a campus visit. When's a good time to visit - classes and clubs in full swing?

Nate: Hello, Jonathan: If you'd like to visit when classes are in session, the best time is during the fall, winter, or spring quarter. As a potential Round One candidate, you probably want to visit in the fall. We have a campus visit program, which will begin in late September / early October. Please check out our website for more details (www.chicagobooth.edu).

Charlotte__Guest_: I went through the application process but did not formally submit my application. (I asked that my application check be shredded.) As I plan to reapply in October. Is it necessary for me to resubmit my transcripts again?

Joanne: Hi Charlotte. We keep application materials such as transcripts for two years, even those who don't end up applying. You do not have to resubmit transcripts. Additionally, we'll always let you know if we're missing something from your application once you apply. Good luck!

G-95361356__Guest_: I am about to start with my second year at work, this year I'm applying to your school, is there any problem to apply with only one year of experience if I want to study at Chicago GSB next year?

Rose: Chicago GSB encourages applicants to consider applying to their MBA earlier in his/her career. By the time you enroll, you will have completed two years of experience. The key factors we will look to you to evaluate is your path/plan, why now and how will you contribute to the community.

varanoiii__Guest_: Good morning! Can you discuss the balance the committee would expect in a reapplicant's application between providing new individual perspectives versus reaffirming information previously conveyed in last year's application? For example, is it encouraged to rediscuss significant items/experiences if they were already fully detailed in the prior application's essays?

Kurt: Varanoii, I think you have to think strategically about what you draw from your old applicaton and how is it relevant to where you are at today. We look at your old application as part of the process but it only serves a baseline. We do not go back and do a complete re-read. We just want to see where you were at a year ago so we can determine how you have developed since that point. You will definitely have to bring some of that information forward into your new application but you do not want to re-write what you originally supplied. We are looking to determine your growth and self-reflection so I would approach you re-application strategy from that perspective.

TJ__Guest_: I'm an international applicant, wanting to make a switch from software engineering to Finance. How does the "flexible" course at GSB help? I've a good GMAT score but just 2 years of work experience(the Chicago GSB states the average as 5). Do I stand at a disadvantage?

Rose: You are certainly not at a disadvantage with less experience. The flexible education provides you with the opportunity to take a number of finance electives in the first quarter to get ready for the recruiting process (and of course, figure out if indeed this is the right path), that other programs will not allow because of more rigid core.

v_murali__Guest_: Thanks Rose, Joanne and Nate for this chat initiative. Considering that the GSB has the same set of essays for re-applicants, can re-applicants use the optional essay to say how they improved over the last time, or should they write and submit their essays as if they are applying for the 1st time?

Joanne: Our preference is for you apply as if you were applying for the first time; if you choose to address updates or changes from a previous application, you should do your best to use the required essays to address these items. The optional essay is provided as an opportunity to explain any anomolies or inconsistencies in your application that cannot be addressed elsewhere.

pre_GSB__Guest_: How have the internship placements at Chicago-GSB been through the recession for the batch graduating in 2009?

Rose: Graduation is this Friday, so we will be collecting information up to three months post graduation. At this time, we are right on par with prior years (the internships are actually higher than in the past). We have seen the effects, however, in the number of job postings over the last two months. We're monitoring next year's opportunities closely, but as of this time, they are on par with prior years.

Art__Guest_: Is the bar set a little higher for reapplicants? How can we set ourselves apart not only from other applicants but from "ourselves" from last year?

Kurt: I would not say the bar is set higher for reapplicants but it is certainly set differently. Because you are going through this process again, we expect reapplicants to have a deeper perspective on this process and a stronger sense of fit with the GSB than someone applying for the first time. This should make sense given you have been through this process once and have time to reflect on the decision and why you would want to go through it again. Again, re-applicants need to demonstrate growth and self-reflection on this process, this is often overlooked and hence re-applicants fail to deliver on a critical point of differentiation.

G-95417660__Guest_: My first question is concerning my application. I am looking into an MBA program, but wanted to apply for two concentrations I was interested in. What is the policy on that?

Nate: When filling out the application, you should be able to indicate the two concentrations you are interested in. The admissions application will go live in mid-July. Hope this helps!

JunTang__Guest_: When will the committee start to read the application?

Joanne: Application evaluation begins when applications are complete and this will vary from round to round.

sp_re_ap__Guest_: Good morning to everybody. I applied last year and sent you 2 recommendation letters from my professional background. Recently, I have changed to another company and I would like to avoid having to ask my current supervisor for a letter. Since I already sent you two "professional" recommendation letters, I was wondering if it is possible to send recommendation letters from a non-professional background to give you a wider of my person.

Joanne: Good morning. As with first-time applicants, we require one professional recommendation. We understand that many applicants cannot obtain letters of recommendation from current supervisors; therefore, we offer the option to obtain one from a previous supervisor instead. The second letter can be from a non-professional resource.

Andy__Guest_: Good morning. I am looking to apply in this fall and had a question about how best one can drill down into specific areas of interest in specific subject areas such as my own in international business, macro-economics and government policy and how such courses would compare with what is offered at other schools. All the brochures and web site information tends to be quite general. Is this something that is best discussed directly with a current student who is studying such coures?

Kurt: Andy, I would recommend you take advantage of the chats and discussion forums. Our students are excellent resources for this type of information and can provide you with the GSB persepective. Many other schools provide the same tools to accumulate this information so I would certianly do the same thing at other schools.

G-95310640__Guest_: Are official transcripts and test scores required for the application, or are they only submitted after acceptance into the program?

Joanne: You can submit unofficial scores upon applying to the GSB, but official documents will be required for anyone who is invited to interview with us.

qwerty01__Guest_: Hi everyone, I have a couple of questions: 1) If I come to GSB with my wife what kind of VISA will she get? Could she work? 2) what about the Chicago Partners Club? Thank you.

Rose: It depends upon the visa you obtain -- an F1 or a J1. If you get a J1, your spouse can work, however, you will need to have a funding source of approximately 50% of tuition. I would encourage you to explore the types of visas now so that you know how best to make plans for the future. The partners club is a very active group on campus, that will assist in social and employment activities. Plus, she will have the same benefits at the university as you. We're in the midst of updating our partner website and that should be available shortly.

Zukkoor__Guest_: Hello my name is Steven Zukkoor, I am interested in appling in the fall. If I am applying right out of school how will my young age be be considered although I have been apart of an extensive co-op program through Kettering University?

Nate: Hello, Steven: We encourage early career candidates to apply. When evaluating applicants right out of college, we pay particular attention to their internships and leadership potential (as demonstrated through extra-curricular activities and in recommendation letters). We also look for intellectual curiosity as demonstrated in one's college record. It is also incumbent upon early career candidates to convey the urgency behind getting an MBA at this point in their career. Needless to say, admission for early career candidates is highly competitive. Hope this helps!

Rose: We have about 5 minutes left to the chat. You have submitted some wonderful questions, which we are working to answer. If your question was not answered, we'll try to make sure they are answered when the chat transcript is posted in the next few days.

IgorL__Guest_: Hi. I applied and was denied in the third round of applications this year. Chicago was the only schhol I applied to and still is my school of choice. Since I do live in the Chicago Metropolitan area and I recently was promoted in my job, I am considering applying part-time. What is the minimum wait period before i can reapply to either the part tim or the full time programs?

Rose: You are eligible to apply to any of our programs at this time (the only requirement is that you can only apply to one program at a time).

Minxing__Guest_: Good morning Rose, Joanne, Kurt and Nate. I would like to know how the admissions team looks upon us re-applicants. Do you think we have any difference from fresh new applicants for the 2009 full MBA program?

Kurt: Minxing, thank you for your question, and I would encourage you to look at some of the other answers I have provided to similar questions. Again the key difference is we are trying to assess growth and self-reflection from reapplicants. How have you developed personally, professionally, emotionally, etc. from the time of your original application until the time you re-apply.

pre777__Guest_: How do you look on sales as work experience for MBA applicants?

Nate: We consider all career paths, and the GSB certainly attracts candidates with an array of professional backgrounds. Regarding your sales experience, the onus will be on you to present your roles, responsibilities, and achievements in a favorable light. Hope this helps!

G-95386381__Guest_: Good morning speakers. I have a question on the admission process. How much emphasis is placed on all round personal experiences of the candidate?

Rose: The application process is holistic. Chicago GSB seeks well rounded candidates -- professional, academic, personal and community oriented. This is a very important characteristic we seek in admitted students.

Aragorn__Guest_: Do you give extra credit (on application), for those who have had visited the campus, or sat in a class?

Nate: Hello, Aragorn: We do not give extra credit. Visiting campus can be extremely helpful for applicants, though. It's a great way to experience the GSB firsthand and gauge fit with our community. Hope this helps!

Gabriel__Guest_: Hi! Are there relevant differences of applying in round 1 or 2 for international applicants?

Joanne: Hi Gabriel. We see the highest application volume in Round 2 so yes, there is a slight advantage to applying in Round 1 if that's when you feel you can submit the best application. You also offer yourself some advantage to staying on the waitlist longer if that turns out to be the decision for you. Finally, our pool is wide open in Round 1, so we're less sensitive to issues of balance in industry, years of work experience, etc., than we may be later on in the process.

JovanneMBA__Guest_: Will there be any GSB Live sessions offered this summer?

Nate: Hello, Jovanne: There won't be any GSB Live events offered this summer. The next GSB Live event is slated for late September. Details, including exact date and program agenda, will be forthcoming on the events section of our website. All the best!

G-203739200__Guest_: Good morning. I am currently on the waitlist for entrance this fall. Can you give me a sense of where you are in the process?

Rose: The waitlist is very active. We made a number of decisions today, and our next release date will be in two weeks.

cbrown__Guest_: Good morning, realizing that there is great latitude in expressing oneself on the powerpoint portion of the application, how can one best make use of it?

Kurt: This is a strategic tool for you to use. Think about the question being asked and what information you feel has been left out that you would really want our committee to know. Many people simply use this as a way to rewrite their application in a different format. This is a lost opportunity to tell us something about yourself that you have had no other opportunity to reveal. This question was not added for the sake of doing something different it was added to see how people think and how they can analytically approach the application using all the tools available to them to communicate fit.

Re-Jonathan__Guest_: If I feel that the essays were the weak part of my previous application, can I completely write new essays just as new applicant?

Joanne: Yes, in fact, we require that you write "new" essays; please treat it as if you were applying for the first time.

Charlotte__Guest_: Is it possible to visit GSB courses this summer?

Joanne: Unfortunately, no. Classes are not taught over the summer at the GSB's full time program. Class visits will resume in the Fall. You are welcome to visit anyway, and take part in an information session and building tour.

cynthia__Guest_: So for round one and round two, which one is more competitve? Which round would you recommend an international student to apply?

Joanne: There is a slight advantage in applying in Round 1 (you can read a previous answer to this question from earlier in the chat), regardless of nationality. Round 3 can get tricky for international students, as the time to get ready for starting at the GSB and securing the visa can be compromised due to the admission decision dates and the dates when orientation begins.

sfhoo__Guest_: I have a question regarding the flexible curriculum. Does the GSB program allow students to take courses in the Law School?

Joanne: Yes, GSB students can take classes in all areas of the University, including the Law School. You are allowed 6 classes to be taken outside the GSB of the 21 courses required.

Tarak__Guest_: Do you differentiate an applicant who has taken GMAT multiple times vs an applicant who has not?

Kurt: Tarak, we alway look at the highest score regardless of how many times you have taken the exam.

Adam_G__Guest_: Who are the members of the admissions committee? (Not actual names, but just generalized)

Joanne: The members of the admissions committee (adcom, as we call it here) are professional staff members in the Office of Admissions, including the Associate Dean for Student Recruitment and Admissions.

Faust__Guest_: Do re-applicants need to send their transcripts and GMAT/TOEFL scores again? Moreover, are re-applicants placed at any disadvantage (no really?)

Joanne: If you submitted official scores and transcripts in your first application, we'll keep these for two years, so you do not need to re-submit these materials. If it's been more than two years, you will have to re-submit these materials. We'll always let you know if your application is missing something. Re-applicants are not at any disadvantage in the admissions process-really!

sip26_1__Guest_: Could you tell me how important is international experience in the application process?

Joanne: International experience is a great addition to your work experience, but of course, it's not required. It's simply another factor to consider when we evaluate applications, but certainly a plus on your resume!

Xavier__Guest_: I have a public sector background, does that make my application less competitive?

Rose: Actually, I have a particular fondness for applicants from the public sector. The rest of your application needs to be competitive as well, but the industry does not have an impact in how we evaluate candidates.

Joanne: We are at the end of our chat. We'll continue to answer questions that have already been posted, but will not be taking any additional ones. Stay tuned for a few more questions and answers, and we'll post the transcript of this chat soon. Thanks everyone!

sip26_1__Guest_: Are you guys visiting Bangalore, India in the near future?

Nate: The GSB plans to visit India this fall. Exact dates haven't been set, though it's safe to say Bangalore will be one of our stops in South Asia. Our travel schedule will be posted later this summer. All the best!

Tariq__Guest_: Would you please provide us with an update regarding the wailist status for this fall?

Rose: The waitlist is still very active. We made a number of decisions this morning (both admit and deny). Our next decision release date will be in two weeks. It's hard to predict the number of spots we will have available yet, but I would encourage you to hang in there if you can.

chadtap__Guest_: Thanks for taking our questions. Aside from working, our GMAT, and essay questions for the application process, what else should we be doing this summer/fall to increase our chances of acceptance?

Kurt: Self-reflection! Ask yourself some tough questions, why do you want to do this program? Why is Chicago GSB the best fit? How do my skill sets and goals make me a good applicant for this program? A common problem for people is they do not take the time to think through why they are interested in an MBA and simply go through the motions of the application process. It is very apparent in the review process who really thought through their decision to apply and who just answered the questions.

Matt__Guest_: What advice would you give for someone who was in banking and was laid off but wants to go back to school next year?

Rose: Thousands of people were laid off as part of the banking crisis, so this will not be a factor in your application. How you leverage your resources, and navigate this "in-between" time will be important to admissions.

Saikat__Guest_: For recommendations, do re-applicants need to provide new recos for this round of application or do the old ones suffice? For example, my direct supervisor may continue to be the same in 4 months time when I apply in round 1.

Nate: Hello, Saikat: Re-applicants will be asked to submit new materials, including recommendation letters. The 2008-09 admissions application will go live in mid-July. Hope this helps!

alterviz__Guest_: Have all waitlist decsions been communicated as of this morning? I just logged in and it still shows I am waitlisted. As I am an international student, I am concerned about the length of time people will continue to be held on waitlist due to visa issues.

Joanne: Yes, we have communicated all waitlist decisions for this period at this point; we will not be making any more decisions until two weeks from today. While we certainly understand your concern about visa issues, we unfortunately will not be able to give you any more information until this time.

Angela__Guest_: Do you see an increase in admission rates amongst reapplicants?

Rose: Yes. Reapplicants tend to have spent time reflecting on their experience from the first application and therefore tend to put together very strong re-applications.

Minxing__Guest_: Dear Rose, by answering oNeMoReChAnCe's question you mean that if I did not get an interview from the previous application, I will have less chance of success for re-application for 2009 program?

Joanne: While I didn't answer that previous question that you're referencing, I can tell you that you are not at any disadvantage in reapplying for 2009 just because you were not offered an interview in a previous year. Your application is different, as is the applicant pool.

Taria__Guest_: Does the GSB have events for prospective students? If so, when do these typically begin?

Nate: Hello, Taria: We offer a campus visit program throughout the summer, though it is scaled back somewhat because there aren't any class visits or lunches with current students. The full-scale campus visit program in the fall begins late September / early October. We also offer campus events called GSB Live throughout the year. Those are slated to begin in late September. Please check out the visit campus section of our website for more information (www.chicagobooth.edu). All the best!

coolrun__Guest_: Is 2009 going to be more competitive for people coming from the banking industry? How has the economic downturn affected your process?

Kurt: In general applications to top business schools have been increasing steadily over the last few years, this economic situation will only add to this trend. At the end of the day, the process is the same regardless of the number of applicants. Those who have put the time in, thought through this process and their fit with a given program are the ones who stand the best chance of being admitted. Do you due diligence, do not just fill out the application think through it strategically, what is it specifically you are trying to tell the committee about your fit with the institution. Regardless of how many people apply the ones that commit themselves to the issues above stand the greatest chance of being accepted.

Taria__Guest_: Hi Rose. I know that work experience is a significant factor when evaluating a prospective student, but does UChicago also evaluate the quality of the work experience? I ask because I am currently an investment banking analyst and will only have a little bit over a year of work experience when I apply.

Rose: The admissions committee has deep knowledge about the experience of most industries for applicants early in their career. We also ask you to explain what you do and the impact that you have. So it is a bit up to you to explain, and for us to compare against our knowledge of the industry.

Nate: Thank you all for your great questions. I'm signing off for the day. Please do stay in touch with any questions or concerns. I'm the only Nate in the Admissions Office. All the best!

Rose: Thank you so much for joining us today. We will be taking a one month hiatus from our monthly newsletter, but will be hosting another chat in July. We look forward to seeing you on our travels beginning in August. Warm regards, Rose

Joanne: Thanks to everyone for asking such terrific questions. Have a great day!

Kurt: Thanks for all of the great questions. Good luck in the process and continue to look for ways to get your questions answered. We are always happy to help and I encourage you to take advantage of all the resources we provide.