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Chat with Admissions

December 10, 2008—9:00-10:00 AM CST

Rose: Good morning, and welcome to our monthly admissions chat. We'll get started in about five minutes. If you have quesitons in the meantime, please send them along. We've got a great group of students and staff on board to help us today. I'll let them introduce themselves shortly. Welcome!

Eddie: Good morning everyone. We survived round!! We have a small break and then we get ready for round 2. We're ready. How about you?

Kurt: Good morning everyone and happy holidays. Thank you for joining us on the chat and I look forward to answering your questions.

Amish: Hi, my name is Amish Shah and I'm a first-year student here at Chicago Booth. I'm currently pursuing concentrations in Strategic Management, Entrepreneurship, and Finance, and I'm hoping to pursue an internship in consulting this Summer. Outside of school, I enjoy following University of Michigan sports, attempting to learn photography, and escaping to warm weather back home in Florida!

Andrea: Good morning everyone! I'm one of the Associate Directors of Admissions at Chicago Booth and look forward to some great questions today!

Matthew: Good morning everyone. Hope everyone is doing well this morning. I'm Matt, a first year at Booth. I'm concentrating in finance, marketing and entrepreneurship. I look forward to answering any questions you have.

steps_mba: Hi, this year there will be an increase in applications because of current financial crisis. How will you address this issue? It will be much more difficult to differentiate candidates with similar background.

Rose: While the number of applications may rise, that does not mean the overall application quality will change. What is most important is that you spend the time to know yourself well, and use the application components to introduce yourself to the admissions committee. Remember, it is impossible to tell us everything about yourself, so you'll need to focus on telling us the things that would be important for us to know about you to make a favorable decision. We can talk more about this as the chat moves along this morning.

Deoye: Hi Rose, I am very much interested in pursuing an MBA with Chicago GSB however I am very concerned about cost. Mainly, I have no money. Are there any accomodations for eager students who may have something to offer but can not afford the costs?

Rose: Yes. We have many applicants each year who come from modest backgrounds and from emerging economies. We have loan programs for all our students regardless of citizenship along with scholarship programs for students from emerging economies.

steps_mba: Hi, can an international applicant be waitlisted also in R2? If yes, when will she be notified of final decision (admitted/denied)? I am asking this because I need a visa. Thank you.

Kurt: Yes, an international student can be waitlisted in round 2. There is no set date at which you will be notified of a final decision but we are very sensitive to the visa process and the additional pressures international students have moving to a new country. In all cases we try not to prolong the waitlist process any longer than necessary and we do our best keep to a relatively open channel of communication with all of our waitlisted students.

G-552610758: How is the current financial turmoil affecting what is being taught at the Chicago GSB?

Rose: As you can imagine, the classroom discussions are full of conversations and debate about the current state of world economic conditions. Chicago has always focused on applying critical thinking skills to the problems we face everyday. So once you learn the basics, you will have plenty of time to use those skills evaluating today's problems and opportunities.

steps_mba: Hi, what does it happen if my recommender does not submit the letter by the deadline?

Andrea: Good morning steps_mba. We will accept recommendation letters up to 2 weeks after the deadline providing the rest of the application is complete and the fee has been paid.

MikeP: Hi Rose. In regards to the slide presentation component of the application, I was worried that my answer might seem too brief. Is it looked down upon if the presentation is too simple? Also, how can I be certain whoever reads/views it will understand the message I am going for, particularly if I am not there to explain it?

Rose: Great question. First of all, we are focused on evaluating content (not creativity). Second, if you feel you may need to explain what you are trying to convey, you can provide us with some brief notes in the optional essay.

Amairo: Good morning to all of you, I'm from Egypt and my question is about my GMAT exam which I will ave on the 23rd of Dec. which means my score report may be won't be sent before your deadline for round 2, can I apply then my scores can be evaluated afterwards?. Also do you have any specific numbers for international students? will I have any chance to join your MBA program if I applied in the 3rd round?

Eddie: I just came back from Egypt. A beautiful country. You can send in your unoffical score (the one you get at the end of the test) for us to review your file but we must have the original for a decision to be rendered. Our international class is about 30%. Round 3 is very competitive - fewer seats, scholarships and the profile of the class begins to take shape. Apply when you're ready but so you can send in the best application you can.

McCouneghey: hello and thank you for holding this chat. just have a quick question, when will all the admit calls start? Will they come out before the deadline or will everyone know their status (admit, denied, W/L) on the 18th via email?

Andrea: We're still in the process of finalizing decisions and will likely begin making calls to admits on the 17th. Keep in mind, though, that we are not always able to reach everyone in advance, so trust that you will have your final answer on the 18th.

David: Good Morning! Thank you very much for hosting this virtual discussion. Being an international applicant, my first question would be regarding loans. Has there been any development in securing new opportunities since the last adcom "chat event"? Also, some schools require students to provide proof of the entire amount of funds needed for the MBA when confirming their place in the program upon admission. Can prospective students "use" the student loans on the declaration of finances form? Thank you.

Rose: Yes, we have been making progress and will have a good deal more information to announce in the New Year. Translated -- we will have a loan program for our international students who do not have a co-signer. As for the use of that to secure your visa, we are confident that you will still be able to use the letter. However, I would strongly encourage all students seeking a student visa to show some of their own funds (whether personal or family) in addition to the loan funds. We'll have more information about these recommendations when students are admitted.

Evelyn: Good morning everyone. I am Evelyn from south California. I am very glad to join this live chat at GSB and here's my questions in the following. I have completed the four parts of CPA exam in the past two years and wonder if any of my passed CPA exam can satisfy the requirement for accounting course in GSB program?

Kurt: Evelyn congratulations on completing the CPA exam-that is a great accomplishment. You will find good company at Chicago Booth as many of our students have their CPA completeted. The exam itself does not allow you to skip our accounting requirement, but because of Booth's flexible curriculum you can choose to bypass the basic level Financial Accounting course and take something more at your skill level such as Tax and Business Strategy, M&A Accounting or Financial Statement Analysis just to name a few alternatives. Many of our students who have deeper knowledge of certain subjects love the fact that Chicago provides such flexibility because they do not have to revisit material they already know and can continue to push their skill sets forward.

Rose: Quick clarification on the timeline for recommenders to submit recommendations. For Round 2, recommenders have up to one full week after the deadline to submit. If applicants need additional time, we ask that you petititon the admissions committee for an additional one week extension. Hope that helps.

Rose esteban: Hello and thank you for having us. I have a couple questions: 1) Regarding letters of recommendation: will there be a different deadline (I learned that you accepted letter of recommendation 2 weeks after the R1 deadline). and 2) In essay No. 2, is it better to talk about a professional experience rather than a personal one? Does it matters when it happened? Thanks again!

Eddie: It's best that you send in your letters of recommendation when your file is submitted. In round 2, this is especially important, since we are expecting a good increase in applications. Please try to submit them with your file. We have made some exceptions on a case by case basis and will be adding clarification to that on our website. You must choose between a professional or personal experience. We would like to see the one that gives the best example.

Fall2010Applicant: How does Chicago plan to use the large donation they just received?

Rose: The new gift is unrestricted and was given for Chicago to continue to build upon its momentum. The gift will largely be used for strategic initiatives (faculty, global centers) and building our brand recognition worldwide.

Amdel311: For students with a strong GMAT score, but no quantitative courses in undergrad, would you recommend taking any additional continuing study coursework? If so, what types of courses would be appropriate to demonstrate quantitative abilities?

Kurt: We admit many students every year that come from "non-quantitative" backgrounds so this is not an unusual situation. A strong GMAT score will certainly help verify your quantitative ability but if you feel you should take a course to emphasize this skill you are more than welcome to do so. If you decide that you would like to take a class either for your own edification or to strengthen your position I would encourage looking into the following options: Business Statistics, Financial Accounting or Microeconomics. These are fundamental courses at most business schools and tend to capture the quant and theory in a way that lays a solid foundation for future b-school classes.

David: Can we submit more than two recommendations?

Andrea: David, this is something that is up to you to decide. Two are required, so be judicious with this decision and think about what value the third recommendation will add to your application. At times it might make sense and can enhance the application, but it could also be redundant.

Ryuji: International MBA requires a second language proficiency. For non-U.S. applicants, dose English proficiency meet the requirement?

Eddie: Yes, technically, English would be your second language if it's not your native language. Many of our non-US students are native English speakers.

Evelyn: I'm pretty interested in your entrepreneurship program since it is the second largest MBA program at GSB, can you please explain a little how this program contributes to each student's post-MBA goals of becoming an successful entrepreneur?

Rose: Hi Evelyn. I'm very involved in the Entrepreneurship programs here at Booth. 1st is the class portions where you can take classes focused on the entrepreneurship challenges in general. Classes like Developing the New Venture and New Venture Lab are lab type classes that will give you first- hand experience with start-up companies. Commercializing Innovation is great for evaluating new companies and ideas from an investment perspective. The Polsky Center is a great resource and hosts office space for early stage start-ups so you can always ask questions there. Polsky also funds an entrepreneurship internship that pays half of your salary if you work at a start-up. The real capstone is the New Venture Challenge which is a student business plan competition. The semi-finalists get to enroll in a class to work on their venture and pitch to VC's with the winners receiving funding.

G-552650021: Good morning. What amount of value is placed on the GMAT score and what is the range of scores that you see?

Eddie: The GMAT is really only one component of the application review. We take a holistic view of the whole file.

SG: Does applying in round 2 affect your chances of admission?

Andrea: SG - Round 2 actually tends to be our largest round in terms of volume of applications and admission offers. Typically, there is very little difference between round 1 and round 2 in terms of an applicant's overall chances at admission.

Vinayak: Goodmorning!! i have a few questions to ask. Firstly, my biggest concern in applying to Chicago GSB (and for that matter other good b-school in US) is that I have formally completed 12 + 3 years of education in India... Is that sufficient? Also not sure whether the one year post graduate diploma that I have done will suffice for the 16th year.. please advice..

Eddie: As long as you have the equivalent of a US degree, you are eligible to apply. You can check out our website for details. The post graduate diploma is acceptable.

CvilleScott: to the students... have you found it easy to pursue 3 concentrations? Is this possible for all, or did you have to gain exemption from any classes?

Matthew: Hi CvilleScott,

Matthew: I don't think it is that difficult. Some of classes can count for multiple concentrations. This is where the flexible curriculum is great. You can tailor your classes early on to match what you want to do and learn. Some classes do have prereq's but you are able to waived them if you are comfortable (or have experience in) a topic. For example, I was able to waive my prereq's for my investments class this autumn.

CuriousGeorge: Hello to all! I'm sure you've addressed this question numerous times. Regarding the current economic environment, I'm concerned that there has been a surge in the number of applicants (especially from the Finance sector) who are applying to business school. How do you filter out those who have made the quick decision to go being it may be their only other option (ie. fired, laid off, can't find work, etc) with those who have a passion to go to business school, even if it means leaving a secure job in this current market? I'm worried that many people have decided to go back to school within the last few months, and have put together a stellar gmat scores which makes it harder to filter out the "fluff" on an application.

Kurt: Thank you for the question, and to be candid we always look for the best applicants. What that means is we try and admit people who best fit with the program and articulate their rationale for going back for an MBA in the most efficient and insightful manner. Regardless of your personal situation or immediate rationale for applying we want to see that you have given ample thought and have prepared a well-thought application that conveys your story effectively. My expereince has been that people who shotgun this process and throw an application together last minute provide a lot of "fluff" and it is easy to filter that out, whereas people who have given this a lot of thought and prepared their applications well are going to prepare compelling and meaningful applications.

Alex: Has there been a change in the number of applicants in the first round compared to last year? Any expectations for the second round? Has it gotten more competitive to be admitted?

Rose: Alex, I'm going to bend your question to how you should approach applying when applications to business schools are increasing. Yes, applications are up, but our job in admissions remains the same -- find the best applicants who can benefit from and contribute to the Chicago community. So here's what I recommend. First, make sure that you have done all your own personal research and preparation (self assessment -- where you've been, who you are, strengths/weakness, why MBA). Second, while there is only one MBA degree, no two MBA programs are exactly the same. Make sure you choose schools that you feel are a match for your personal and professional needs. Third, take a look at the application components and figure out strategically how you want use each of these components in presenting your candidacy. Bottom line is that we are looking to learn enough about you and your motivations to evaluate your candidacy.

Henry: Citibank cancelled their student loan program, what is GSB doing to make sure the incoming students can get loans? thanks

Rose: We're in the midst of negotiations and hope to be able to announce a replacement loan program sometime early in the New Year.

Tab: Are all admitted students, regardless of what round the student is admitted in, eligible for the scholarships and fellowships, mentioned here http://www.chicagobooth.edu/fulltime/admissions/scholarships/ ? Do candidates that apply for the 2nd round at a disadvantage, in comparison to 1st round applicants, for such awards? Are scholarships/fellowships awarded with the acceptance to Booth MBA or are they awarded sometime later? Thanks!

Andrea: All admitted students are considered for scholarships and fellowships and if chosen, either an award or nomination for a fellowship is issued with the admission offer. Technically, round 1 applicants have the first shot at scholarships and fellowships, but we still award plenty during round 2 so one would not be at a great disadvantage.

G-552628894: Does the chance of getting admitted decrease with later rounds? i.e. Round 4 chances are lower than Round 2?

Eddie: Hmmm? Round 4? We don't have a Round 4. We only have 3 rounds of application. Applying later in the cycle-Round 3-is much more competitive because there are fewer seats as well as scholarships. Again, the class begins to take shape this late in the season so an application really has to be sharp.

G-552639744: I'm really interested in Chicago GSB, however, I would like to know more about your extra activities like clubs, public activities since I really like to do those stuffs :)

Matthew: You can get involved in clubs and extra activities very easily. The main issue is there is so much to do and so few hours in the day! Personally, I'm highly involved in the Energy, Corporate Strategy, Hi Tech and Entrepreneurship/PE/VC groups as well as the management consulting group, public speaking and emerging markets clubs. I've worked on two case competitions and am working on an idea for the New Venture Challenge. I also volunteer to mentor local high school kids. These are a small sampling of what you can do - and if a club doesn't exist, you can start one. There is lots going on with clean energy activities this year that were all student driven. I'm hoping to free up my schedule in the spring to join the rugby club as well.

Melanie: I'm a Chinese college senior majoring in Finance with entrepreneurship experience. Have you recruited any Chinese college seniors to your full-time MBA program before? Can you share background of some international college seniors who directly enter Chicago MBA after graduation?

Kurt: At Chicago we look more at a candidate's rationale and conviction to an MBA in the application process than the actual number of years of work experience. With that said we would like all of our students to have had exposure to the professional world whether as an entrepreneur, a professional internship or co-op experience. We look for students who connect the dots and can relate to us why they think now is the absolute right time for them to get an MBA. For younger applicants your argument should help us understand why you think forgoing work experience to get this degree makes sense in accomplishing your long and short term goals. Again it is not about a certain profile or number of years of experience but rather your commitment to this next step in your career.

Tab: Thanks for taking the time to answer questions. What is the word limit or suggested word count for the application's Optional Essay, "If there is any important information that is relevant for your candidacy that you were unable to address elsewhere in the application, please share that information here." Thanks!

Andrea: We don't have a set word count for the optional essay. Keep in mind, though, that this is an opportunity to describe any anomalies that cannot be addressed elsewhere in the application and not an opportunity to submit another lengthy essay. Use what you need to tell us what is relevant, but be judicious.

Sam: With the overall increase in applications, is the plan to admit more people and create a larger overall class or will class size stay about constant?

Kurt: Sam we would love to take more talent into the class but the reality we have space and resource constrictions so we are bound to take a certain number of students. With that said I do not anticipate the class growing any time in the near future.

Evelyn: According to your 2-year fulltime MBA program, does it include any internship? if yes, please describe a little how does each type of internship vary upon each different student's need?

Amish: Yes, most students will pursue a summer internship between their first and second years in the full time program. Internships are neither assigned nor guaranteed; students are responsible for pursuing and securing the internship that best matches their career goals. That said, many of the world's top companies come directly to Booth to pursue our students, and there are a wealth of resources available from the school to help you find the best internship for you!

Alex: how successful have students been at finding internships and landing job offers, and what steps have they taken to deal with the current crisis? I think proactivity is mandatory and I know the school helps a great deal aswell... can you describe the situation today and the forecast for the future?

Rose: Chicago has been incredibly proactive in working with alumni and our corporate partners around the world to access great professional opportunities for our students. Career services has been hard at work counseling students and helping them find great opportunities throughout the world. Yes, there are definite challenges, especially if your goal was to work on Wall Street, but there are still great opportunities out there. As for the future, that's tough to predict. Our first year students will begin the recruiting process in January but on- campus recruitment seems very strong, and the information we are receiving from our corporate partners is that they are still hiring.

meimei: I chose a client to be my recommender as he can also speak for my working performance well. As he is not my current or most recent employer as suggested, do I need to explain why I choose him as my recommender in the optional essay?

Andrea: meimei - Only one of the recommendations must come from a current or former supervisor and the second can come from whomever you choose. There is a space in the application for you to tell us who you have chosen and why.

Alfredo: Good Morning from the Caribbean! I will focus on entrepreneurship in my MBA. What opportunities are there in Chicago Booth to create meaningful relationships with alumni or others, who may eventually become suppliers, mentors, consultants or customers of my future business? Are there any specific case examples of this occurring in the past?

Amish: Great question. There are plentiful opportunities to build relationships with Booth alumni, both inside and outside the entrepreneurship curriculum. It seems like every week there is an event that helps connect Booth students with Booth alumni in various geographies and industries. Specifically, for entrepreneurship, events like the Entrepreneurship, Venture Capital, and Private Equity Conference or the New Venture Challenge provide an opportunity for Booth students to specifically connect with similar minded graduates of our programs. Additionally, we have a Community Directory full of contact information of alumni around the world who are willing to connect with Booth students. I've found that to be particularly helpful as I've begun mapping out my career!

arorap247: Good Morning-Can you tell me where I can find some additional information about scholarships and what factors are considered when assigning merit based scholarships?

Eddie: For merit based scholarships we review the entire file again including essays, transcripts, test scores, etc. If you are admitted to the program you'll have access to the "admitted student" website where we give you additional information for scholarships.

Nataliya: Hi, did you have a lot of applicants from Ukraine in Round 1 please? In general, is Ukraine represented well in your School or Ukrainians will be considered to be a minority please? Thank you!

Eddie: Well, we don't really share the geographic locations of our applicants. No, the Ukraine is not considered a minority. If you are from the Ukraine we would love to have you apply!

SP: Hi Amish, what are the various avenues to pursue entrepreneurial aspirations at booth?

Amish: Entrepreneurship interests can be pursued in quite a few different ways here at Booth. Entrepreneurship as a whole is managed through our Polsky Center, which facilitates the classroom, experiential, and even career opportunities that make entrepreneurship so strong here. There's the obvious course component - classes like Commercializing Innovation and Building the New Venture provide a formal mechanism to learn about entrepreneurship. Next, we have our experiential opportunities. The New Venture Challenge is our premiere business plan competition and offers an opportunity to test your ideas and have them rigorously evaluated by top professors, entrepreneurs, and investors. The New Venture and Small Enterprise lab lets you partner with a real startup and gain experience helping them address a strategic issue that the company is actually facing. Lastly, the Polsky Center can even help facilitate internships with entrepreneurial companies domestically and abroad to provide students with even more hands-on experience. There's a great balance of classroom, experiential, and career opportunities for budding entrepreneurs!

Abi-2010: Hello there, my name is Abi and I'm currently based in London (so it's really good afternoon from here!). I would appreciate more direct interaction with Booth as I complete my application. As I will not be able to visit Chicago before submitting my application, would it be possible for me to visit the London campus to meet with staff there?

Andrea: Abi, You are always welcome to visit any of our campuses, but because our London campus only offers the Executive MBA program, visiting may not give you an accurate sense of what it is like to be a full time student. Our students will be hosting casual events all over the world during the winter break and there are plans to hold one in London, which may be of interest. The date has not yet been determined, but as soon as it is the date will be updated on our website http://www.chicagobooth.edu/fulltime/admissions/events/europe.aspx.

G-552636680: - How can I find a sample of the Chicago Booth recommendation questions before I submit my application?

Rose: Great question. We'll post that information on our website under recommendations a bit later today. Sorry for this oversight on our part.

Alex: this one goes to the students: can you describe how you have profitted most from Booth?

Matthew: Hi Alex. Good question. I would say I have profited in multiple ways. From the classroom side of things - I've really learned to think more critically, (and I guess I'll find out if this is true when get my finals back next week!). I know that is a bit cliche as Chicago, but after a few months here it's amazing to look at the difference. I would say I have really gained from my fellow classmates. Everyone is so interesting and has such diverse experiences that I find myself in awe everyday. You'll be surprised how quickly you bond with your classmates and the wealth of information they can give from contacts to experience to just good conversations.

Krisml: Hi. I am in the midst of preparing my essays. I am wondering what the admissions committee is looking to be expressed in Essay 3.

Eddie: Ahhh. The Powerpoint essay. Here's your chance to give us your best shot. we want to find out what makes you tick. What makes you stand out? We would like to see the passion that you may have about extra-curricular activities, travel, professional or personal experiences, etc. There is no preferred answer to this but we do hope that you are reflective and show us a part of you that you feel needs to be covered in this essay.

RM: Hi, would you discourage international students from applying to R3?

Andrea: We do encourage international students to apply to either round 1 or round 2 to allow adequate time for visa processing. However, it's not impossible for an international student to apply round 3, but rather just may make things a bit more hectic if admitted.

chicagomba: Hi Amish. Thanks for chatting with us. I'm planning to pursue the same set of concentrations, if admitted to Chicago. Could you tell me about a few interesting classes/professors that have most left an impression on you?

Amish: I've only just completed my first quarter, but already I've been blown away by my all of my professors. Thanks to Booth's flexible curriculum, I was able to jump right into an Entrepreneurship class called Commercializing Innovation taught by Scott Meadow, a highly sought-after professor with decades of experience in venture investing. The class was demanding, but we studied some pretty interesting cases (many deals that the Professor Meadow himself had been involved in). We explored the creation of familiar businesses like Staples and Sports Authority, and less familiar but equally interesting businesses like mobile security software providers or health care advocates. The class armed me with a lot of tools in evaluating any type of business at any stage of its maturity, and the professor kept the discussions lively and entertaining.

G-552550449: Hi, because I'm an international applicant, I already knew about the minimum scors in toefl. although my test score blow the minimun number, can I get the opportunity to invite the interview?

Kurt: The TOEFL minimum is STRONGLY ENCOURAGED it is not necessarily a make or break number. With that said we may invite people to interview who do not meet that threshold but there would have to indicators in the applicaiton that one's English language ability is very strong. To determine this we will look at the GMAT, AWA, essays, recs, etc. to determine if the TOEFL is an anomoly or an indicator of a greater language deficiency. To be candid most people who fall well below the TOEFL number indicated do not get invited to interview. We are very in tune with language ability in the selection process because the program moves very fast and the material conveyed is often times complicated and not being able to communicate effectively in this type of environment can be detrimental to the student and the overall classroom experience.

Alfredo: Hola. How smooth is the transition from full time professional to full time student at Chicago Booth, especially for those of us who have been out of school for more than 5 years?

Amish: The transition can be both exciting and challenging. One the one hand, you're not bound to as rigid of a schedule as you might have at a full-time job, so you may end up with mornings off and extended weekends and plenty of time to socialize with your peers. On the other hand, you no longer have anyone to report to. You're responsible for managing your own work and your own time, and at times it can be challenging to manage it all without the formal structure of a full-time job. I found that I was able to quickly find the right balance for me. I'm certainly no less busy than I was when I was at work, but I'm definitely having a lot of fun as a student too!

sontheweb: Good morning everyone. I am an Booth MBA aspirant from India. I have been very excited to learn about the environment of Chicago Booth as in its very interactive, down to earth and also good for early-career aspirants like me. I am a young doctor from India and will have 17 months of fulltime work experience. Apart from what I have already read on the Chicago site could you possibly tell me more about early-career students like what should they stress upon?

Eddie: Leadership positions, management experience and strategic decisions are very helpful. The maturity factor is also quite important since you will be working with peers who have more work experience than you and are looking for creative ways to share ideas and provacative problem solving skills.

G-552624416: Good morning Dean Martinelli, I hope all is well. Chicago Booth is my first choice for business school. In May, I will graduate with a J.D. and sit for the bar exam in July. If I am fortunate enough to matriculate to Chicago Booth, can I take elective courses at Chicago Law and will they count towards my Booth degree?

Andrea: One of the key differentiators of the Chicago Booth MBA is our flexible curriculum. Up to 6 courses out of the 21 required can be taken anywhere at the University of Chicago, including the Law School.

fatb: Hi, is there any opportunity for an international learning trip as part of the experiential learning in Booth? Thank you very much

Eddie: There are opportunities for you to study outside of the US by taking part in the International MBA or the International Business Exchange programs.

numerouno: Good morning Chicago Booth. Considering the questions are often repeated and most of the information is on the website. What is the biggest challenge for applicants, what is the one take-away from this communication?

Rose: While most of the information is available on the website, applicants also use this method of communication to ask the tougher questions about themselves in an anonymous format. I also learn a lot about what's on the mind of applicants so that we can proactively address these concerns. And finally, I value the time our applicants put into the process of applying to Chicago, and want to make myself (and team) available to address the questions and concerns on a regular basis. Not everyone gets the chance to visit campus; this is our opportunity to provide a bit of that connection no matter where you sit in the world this morning.

bruce: Hello, I'm Bruce from S. Korea.Thank you for allowing us this time. I have a question about the joint degree.Is it possible to apply for joint degree in MBA/regional studies not now, but during the 1st year of MBA?

Kurt: Bruce, any student is eligible to apply to a joint-degree program as long as they do it before their terminal year in a program, meaning you are only eligible to apply to another joint-degree program in your first year at Booth. If you apply in your second year you would be entering the program of choice after you had graduated and therefore would no longer be considered a joint-degree but rather an incoming student with a Chicago Booth MBA.

Prithviraj: Hi Team, All the subjects during my undergraduation were thought in English. Do I need to provide any document for it or state it in the optional essay

Andrea: Prithviraj- there is a question in the application that asks if you are exempt from the TOEFL and why, which is where this would be indicated. If invited to interview, we always require official transcipts which would verify that the language of instruction was English.

steps_mba: Thank you for your responses. I have another question: Chicago GSB is no longer used. Are "Chicago Booth" or "Booth" ok in the essays?

Kurt: Correct, we are now Chicago Booth not Chicago GSB, so that would be the preferred nomenclature for the application. With that said, we will not penalize people for using the GSB in their application. We are all still getting used to the new name.

Felipe: Is it possible to submit recommendation written in Spanish, with an official translation? How is this procedure?

Eddie: You can send in a recommendation that is translated from another language. It must be certified or notarized.

Alex: Hi Rose, what qualities do you value most of admitted students?

Rose: Wow, that's a tough question. I guess what strikes me about our admitted students is their passion and energy towards whatever is important to them. The application is just the introduction to someone that I hope will be a lasting alumni relationship for years to come.

Sincere: When looking at transcripts do you look at individual classes or just the GPA and majors

Andrea: Sincere - We review the entire transcript and take into consideration the GPA, major, classes taken, rigor of the curriculum, etc.

Hector: Good morining to all the hosts, I have a question concerning recommendations letters. As with many other companies worldwide, the company I work for is going through a period of downsizing. I don't feel comfortable asking my direct supervisor for a letter. How do you suggest I handle this without raising flags?

Eddie: Simply use the "optional" essay and tell us why you are not using your immediate supervisor. We appreciate your honesty and recognize that you do not want to jeopardize your current position You can use a previous supervisor but keep in mind whoever you do choose, we do need a good interpretation of your professional skills.

varanoiii: Amish, as you reflect upon your first few months at Booth, is there anything you would do differently (either during the summer leading up to the start or during the first few months)? Thanks!

Amish: Enjoy the summer! My biggest regret was not leaving my job sooner and taking the time to recharge before jumping into school. I moved to Chicago just a few days before the start of school, so I was rushed to get settled. If you're able to, take some time off, travel, relax, and start getting to know some of the other people you'll be headed to school with. The only thing I might have done differently after starting is "get away" a bit more. There are so many activities and so many great people here that it's hard not to spend every minute of every day doing something Booth-related. Many of my non-Booth friends and family haven't seen me for weeks! Sometimes it is refreshing to take a step back...If I could, I'd go back and step away a little more. (Also, I'd like to go back and catch up on some sleep!)

Felipe: Dear Rose and Kurt, 1. As part of the Application for the MBA + International Relations Program I need to submit a Writing sample, that could be a paper or a thesis document. I'm a mechanical engineer, with 7 years experience in engineering, marketing and advertising, international trade, diplomacy and International Business. But the only writing academic writing sample I could submit is my Mechanical engineering Thesis that is a technical document written in Spanish. It is possible to submit this document?

Kurt: Felipe, you are on my list of calls today so I will follow up with you this afternoon. I am meeting with the IR office at 1 PM CST and can get an answer to this very specific question. I hesitate to answer without the specific details for their program. Thanks for your patience and I will connect with you once I have an official answer.

G-552650021: If placed on the W/L, is there a "no later than date" that Booth uses for notifications>

Rose: Chicago Booth uses the waitlist to gauge the applicant pool. Our Round 2 deadline takes place after Round 1 decisions are released, so instead of over-admitting in any particular round, we will use the waitlist for great candidates that we have strong interest in admitting. Waitlisted candidates will be added back to the pool as part of the next round. Those candidates will be notified of a decision with the subsequent round. We'll definitely send more information around to candidates on the waitlist.

okocha66: How much weight does prior year's file have when considering re-applicants? Specifically, is it possible to recover from past poorly written essays?

Eddie: When we review "re-applications" we want to see if your vision has changed; new short term/long term goals, pursuing a new concentration, new employment or responsibilities, etc. We also value what a new letters of recommendation offer. We have access to all previous applications (for re-applicants) and may review them with the current one.

kiwifella: Dear Adcom, I had a question on International Transcripts. How do GSB Adcom weigh up transcripts from say New Zealand against other transcripts. Are scaled GPAs taken into consideration when making such comparisons?

Kurt: We do not compare transcripst, we look at your academic performance in the context of your overall application and academic record. The overwhelming majority of transcripts are accompanied by official documentation from the school that provides us deeper insights into the grading and ranking system of that specific program. Therefore we evaluate you in that context. This is why we do not ask international students to try and convert there grades to the US standard of a 4.0 scale. We simply ask you to send in your transcripts and let us do the rest.

Rose: We have about 5 more minutes left to the chat. So make sure you send along any last minute questions or thoughts.

sontheweb: Hello Rose, could you shed some light on certificate in Healthcare administration and policy and its extent? I was inteding to pursue and MPH in Health Policy some time later after my MBA.

Rose: The health care certificate is a jointly administered program by the medical school, school of public policy and the business school. More information about the courses can be found at: http://gphap.uchicago.edu/. If you'd like to be connected to some current students, let us know.

Leah: Can you please discuss the scholarship opportunities for non-international students?

Andrea: We offer merit-based scholarships, Chicago Booth fellowships and a few corporate fellowships that are open to both domestic and international students. For more information visit, http://www.chicagobooth.edu/fulltime/admissions/scholarships/

G-552579438: Hello, thank you for this opportunity, my name is Baris Ertan and I will be submitting my application for the second round of admissions. Can you tell me if I can apply to the full time MBA and the executive MBA in London at the same time? Should I start two separate applications?

Rose: Typically, you are only allowed to apply to one program at a time. You are welcome to petition the dean of both programs to file two applications simultaneously. You'll need to be clear as to why approaching two programs makes sense as part of your petition.

G-552650021: Is there value placed on owning your own business vice working for a larger corporation?

Rose: Again, Chicago does not have a preference for one type of experience over the next. Your job is to help us to understand the relevance of your experience and where you are hoping to go professionally. The choice of career is completely up to you.

fatb: I am very interested in Booth's plan to strengthen its international brand, which I thought was already really strong. I have a question, even though a regular 2Y cannot take any class in the Singapore campus, is there any way to have an experential trip to Asia that includes both learning and networking? thank you very much

Kurt: Chicago Booth has an extensive study abroad program with 33 sister institutions in 27 countries. Any MBA candidate is eligible to participate in a study abroad experience and has to go through a relatively simple application process once they are enrolled. Although one can not study specifically at the Booth campus in Singapore they can study at our sister school in Singapore Nanyang University.

Felipe: My last two questions: 1) I would like to know if once I submit my application for the MBA +IR joint Degree, it is possible to pass for the MBA and not for the IR program, and be able to do the MBA. 2) It is possible to apply only to the MBA Program, and once the Program starts apply for the MBA+IR joint degree? Thank you very much for hosting this useful chat!

Kurt: Felipe, you can be admitted to either the MBA or the IR program; if that does happen you will be notified of that decision upon the decision deadline. Also it is possible to apply just to the MBA program and apply to the IR joint degree in your first year.

G-552628894: If I have a graduate degree/transcripts from a US university, can I skip sending in my undergraduate degree/transcripts [as it is difficult to obtain them from my home country]

Andrea: We will need transcripts for your undergraduate degree as well as your graduate degree. At the time you submit your application, though, all that is required is a self-reported transcript (there is a template in the application system). If invited to interview, however, we will need official transcripts from all schools at which a degree was earned. We do accept notarized copies of international transcripts if it is difficult to obtain the official.

ABopp: Good morning. Generally speaking, what are some of the things you feel make an application stand out compared to others? Thanks.

Rose: For me a candidate who has a track record of success and have been able to leverage the oppportunities that they have been afforded in their life tells me a lot about that person's character and value systems. People who are engaged in the world around them, intellectually curious and who want to challenge and be challenged by others do the best at Chicago.

G-552624416: Prior to matriculation, will taking accounting, corporate finance and valuation at the graduate level (law or business school) fulfill the foundation component of the Booth program?

Kurt: In order to achieve a Booth MBA all classes have to be taken at the University of Chicago. So the only way this would count towards a degree requirement would be if you took one of these classes through the University of Chicago Graham school as a student at large.

mba2009_1: Rose, You talked about the entrepreneurship programs at Booth. Can u please also tell me about social entreneurship programs in particular and related initiatives at Booth?

Rose: This is a growing area of interest at Chicago. From our net impact student group, to microfinance and new classes in social entrepreneurship, there are lots of ways for students with these interests to take classes and participate in conferences. I would encourage you to reach out to the net impact student group to find out more of these offerings. Our students are happy to interact with prospectives at any point.

kiwifella: What opportunities do MBAs get to interact with the wider University of Chicago community. Can one take courses offered by other faculties? Is there much opportunity for interaction for social and professional networking?

Matthew: You have the opportunity to take classes at the other colleges and departments (eg Law, Econ, Harris school, etc.). There is the opportunity to interact with other members of the community. For instance in a more formal way, the High Tech group has started regular meetings with the computer science department's students to brainstorm for business ideas. This has also carried over to interactions with the hard sciences and medical school as business students and scientists try to match up and turn innovation into a real business plan. I've also personally interacted regularly with the law and econ students. You can head to to Ida Noyes pub (about 30ft from Harper) and meet and mingle any day of the week.

RichardNeely: Are Students allowed to take classes outside of the Business School (i.e. language or public policy courses)?

Andrea: Yes, with the flexible curriculum up to 6 courses out of the 21 required can be taken anywhere at the University of Chicago.

frenchie: Abt the International MBA: the 5 international business courses and language class, are they over and above what the regular mba students take? or they count as part of the regular number of electives?

Eddie: The 5 courses that IMBA students have to take are specifically set up for the IMBA curriculum. Someone who is taking the MBA program has an opportunity to take international MBA courses as well. Their focus may not be as structured as someone who may seriously be considering working outside of the US or their home country.

Eddie: Thanks for joining us and we hope to see your applications in round 2!!

Andrea: Thanks for the great questions today! Best wishes to those applying for round 2!

Amish: Thanks for chatting with us this morning. Good luck with your applications!

Rose: I appreciate your joining us this morning. I imagine that many of you are a bit anxious about the application process this year, but I would encourage you to focus on yourself (not the greater applicant pool) and trust that admissions does a very thorough job in evaluating applications. What you can do is be strategic, be thorough, be authentic in what you are trying to communicate and trust that the discipline that has brought you success this far in your career will continue. I wish you much success as you put the finishing touches on your applications. And for those of you waiting for Round 1 decisions, it won't be too much longer to wait. Happy Holidays! Rose

Kurt: Thanks for taking the time today and good luck in the rest of the application process. Happy Holidays once again to all of you.

Matthew: Good luck to everyone with the applications and have a great holiday.