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Interested in learning about life at Booth from the student perspective? Then join us for a live chat on November 29 where you'll be able to talk to students from Chicago Women in Business (CWiB). They can answer your questions related to classes, career support, and student groups as well as provide information about the resources and support CWiB provides Booth women. Admissions staff will also be available to respond to your admissions-related questions.

Thursday, November 29 from 11:00 am to 12:00 pm CT

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Moderator -> EveryoneThe chat will begin shortly. Please feel free to submit your questions now about life at Chicago Booth!
Moderator -> EveryoneThank you for joining today's chat. We will begin in just a few minutes.
Moderator -> EveryoneWelcome to the chat! We are happy to answer any questions you have about life at Booth.
Laura -> EveryoneGood morning! Looking forward to chatting with everyone. I am a second year here at Booth and am currently taking Financial Statement Analysis, Negotiations, and Corporation Finance. I am an Admissions Fellow and am a member of DSAC, CWIB, the management consulting club, Wine Club, Net Impact, and Giving Something Back. I'm happy to answer any questions you have so ask away!
Yesim -> EveryoneHi everyone! It's Yesim here. Looking forward to chatting with you about my Chicago Booth experience:-)
Alicia -> EveryoneHello and welcome! I am looking forward to helping you learn more about life as a Booth student. Feel free to ask about life as a student, living in Chicago, or anything else!
Allison -> EveryoneHi everyone! My name is Allison, I'm looking forward to chatting with you all this morning! Please feel free to ask any questions, and in particular, I'm happy to answer any questions about career transitioning.
Kelsey -> EveryoneHi! My name is Kelsey and I look forward to chatting with you this morning!
Joanne -> EveryoneHi everyone! My name is Joanne Legler, Associate Director of Admissions. Looking forward to helping answer any admissions-related questions you might have.
Kristen -> EveryoneThank you for joining our chat! Please feel free to ask me about Finance and Entrepreneurship courses and about the admissions process in general.
Carrie -> EveryoneHi! My name is Carrie Lydon, Associate Director of Admissions. I look forward to answering your questions.
Beth -> EveryoneHi all. Looking forward to chatting with you!
Mario -> AliciaI'm trying to apply to the Full time MBA in 2012 and between one of my options is Chicago School. I'm also contemplating Wharton and Stanford. I would like to know, from your point view, which is the best advantage to get the title from the booth school ?
Alicia -> MarioIt will depend on what you are looking for in your MBA experience. For me, Booth was the best place to build a strong foundation in analytic and quantitative skills at my own pace. I wanted to challenge myself (I studied communications in undergrad) but with the flexibility to do so with a balance of other classes I thought were interesting as well, without a standard structure. I also wanted a strong community that was based in the city, so there would be plenty of social activities. Booth was a natural choice for me!
skhm -> KristenWhat kind of opportunities for entrepeneurship have you participated in / enaged in?
Kristen -> skhmCurrently, I am in the New Venture Lab class where I consult for a start-up company here in Chicago. Compared to other courses at Booth, this is really a hands-on class and most of my time was spent working on the project with my team and working with the client on-site. At the end of the quarter, we present our final project to the management of the company. We also have a weekly class (like other courses at Booth) where we learn about issues related to starting your own business. Entrepreneurship courses are just one way in which you can participate in Entrepreneurship. Booth also has the New Venture Challenge in which the best start-up wins $25,000. You can look at all the opportunities for Entrepreneurship at this link: http://www.chicagobooth.edu/entrepreneurship/
AM -> JoanneHi, I am a 2012 applicant and wanted some tips on attempting the thirs question (regarding the ppt)
Joanne -> AMEssay #3, or the "powerpoint essay" is one of my favorite parts of the application! We try not to offer too much advice on this essay; we are really excited to see what you come up with. The best advice we can give is to be sure you are offering information that is additive and, across all three essays, fully tells your story from start to finish. It can be a great way to add dimension to information already present in the application, or provide us with new insights. Have fun with it!
Bruce -> AliciaAt Chicago, is there any special courses provided for the spouses of MBA students?
Alicia -> BruceThere are no specific courses designated for partners, but the Partners Club is very active and there are lots of ways to incorporate spouses into the Booth experience. http://student.chicagobooth.edu/group/chipart/index.php My husband has connected with many of my classmates and when I get busy, he goes to more Booth social events than I do!
Adity -> Carrie1. Does Booth offer a special preference in admitting women applicants? 2. How important is an interview? Is it necessary to be clear with the industry one wishes to go into post an MBA or can a prospective student decide to explore his interests through the various programs offered at Booth and then decide which subject interests him/her the most.
Carrie -> AdityHi Adity. Chicago Booth admits a diverse class on a wide variety of dimensions. While we do not offer a special admissions preference for any group, we are committed to having a strong women's community at Booth. In terms of the interview, it is important to the process in that it is the only face-to-face impression we have of you. That said, the interview report is taken into consideration in conjunction with the rest of the application. As to your last question, we are looking for applicants who have a focused career path, understanding that it may change during the MBA experience. While there is definitely an element of exploration during your time at Booth, it is very important to have a path and a plan.
Kota -> KristenI'd like to know about the current students' experiences about Lab.
Kristen -> KotaHi Kota, I spoke about this in a previous message but to dig further, Lab classes are all about working in a real-world situation and truly gives students a chance to apply what they have learned in a real-world setting. I can honestly say that I have learned the most from my Lab class as it really is all about learning from your mistakes in a safe environment.
Bruce -> YesimI know almost from the first day in business school, MBA students are preparing for seeking job opportunities. Then according to your experience, how to balance the study and job-seeking?
Yesim -> BruceSure, recruiting does start fairly quickly in the fall quarter of first year. Students usually balance their schedule by taking a slightly lighter course load (i.e. three courses rather than four or five, foundation courses rather than higher level ones) during recruiting. Career Services is also phenomenal in supporting students during this process and I have found it much easier to handle recruiting as time passed. Finally, the atmosphere here is very supportive and most courses require group-work where students help one another learn the material much more efficiently.
Ray_G -> Laurahi all! I am interested in Booth and also interesting in taking a job with a consulting firm after obtaining my MBA. I have heard that consulting firms are interested in your GMAT score. How much emphasis do the consulting firms - in particular the top consulting firms - place on the GMAT score?
Laura -> Ray_GWhile I can't answer on behalf of consulting firms, I can share my experience recruiting with consulting firms and my best guess at how much they emphasize the GMAT. They do look at it because even if it is not on your resume, they will ask for it in applications. Consulting firms certainly value your analytical experiences and abilities, which is why (I assume) they value it. That said, I do not believe that if your GMAT is not extremely high, that you will not receive an interview or will not be strongly considered. I believe they take a holistic approach with candidates and may just push you harder during your case or on your analytical experiences if your GMAT is not strong enough. I hope that is helpful!
J_Mac -> KelseyWhat was the most surprising thing about Booth to you as a student?
Kelsey -> J_MacHi, J_Mac! The most surprising thing to me when I came on campus as a first-year was all of the amazing people that I met. Every conversation that I had during orientation was with someone who had a completely unique experience and background from my own. I'm really excited about the network I'm establishing at Booth.
Kanad -> JoanneHi, what is the schools view on early career candidates with only 1 or 2 years experience
Joanne -> KanadAt Chicago Booth, we feel strongly that each applicant should choose the time that is right for them to apply to the program; for some, that's 5-7 years after college graduation, while others feel ready to get started a year or two into their first jobs. The point is to make it clear in your application why now is the right time to join an MBA program, based on your past experience, your future goals and what you hope to get out of the program. We do offer some advice for Early Career Candidates on our website at http://www.chicagobooth.edu/fulltime/admissions/early-enrollment/.
FranckLitzlerR1 -> KristenHello Kristen, do you believe the flexible curriculum enables to successfully undertake both concentrations on finance and entrepreneurship or is it better to focus on one only while taking few classes on the other topic? Thanks! Franck, R1 applicant
Kristen -> FranckLitzlerR1Hi Franck! The beauty of a flexible curriculum is that you can take classes in the quarter of your choosing (subject to course availability). This is about your personal preference in terms of what you want to learn immediately. For me, because I had a finance background, I chose to purse both concentrations simultaneously as I was eager to learn more about Entrepreneurship but still wanted to make sure I had my finance fundamentals down. I am finishing my finance concentration this quarter and will complete my Entrepreneurship concentration by next quarter so it is totally doable to do both concentrations simultaneously.
Ivy -> YesimHi, my name is Ivy, nice to talk to all of you. Can you descript a typical event organized by CWIB to help female advance in career?
Yesim -> IvyHi Ivy! We organize numerous professional events for women at Booth throughout the year. Fall Conference is our capstone professional development event which is a day-long conference that brings representatives from our corporate sponsors together with our members in a series of panels, interactive sessions and networking hours. You can find out more about this year's conference on our website: This year's CWiB Fall Conference focuses on the challenges and advantages unique to women in business, and presents the stories of successful women in industry. The conference will include keynote speeches, panel discussions, interactive sessions, networking lunch and a networking cocktail hour with CWIB corporate sponsors.
Antoinette -> LauraLaura- because you mentioned Giving Something Back... How involved with community service type activities is the typical Booth student? Do you think there is a service oriented mindset or a want to utilize your MBA skills to work with service organizations?
Laura -> AntoinetteThat's a great question! I have been amazed by how willing to give back people at Booth really are. While it may not always be through direct community service such as tutoring, most people seem to care about helping out in some way whether it is through a social impact pro bono consulting project, attending a charity event, donating toys to a toy drive or volunteering time. I believe that people at Booth are generally very giving of their time in general and so it translates to community service in many cases. For example, almost all second years give signficant amount of time to helping first years with recruiting, picking classes, and many other things even though there is no requirement. People just enjoy giving back in different types of ways.
raghavgupta -> CarrieHi, i have no work experience. should i apply for on MBA course immediately after graduation?
Carrie -> raghavguptaHi Raghav. We do not have any limits on years of work experience at Booth. We encourage all applicants to assess whether or not now is the best time for the MBA, which may or may not be affected by current work experience. As an early career candidate, I would advise you to think about your career goals, path, and plan and how the MBA fits into it, and then make the best decision for yourself. Should you decide to apply, please consult our Early Career Candidate page on our website: http://www.chicagobooth.edu/fulltime/admissions/early-enrollment/.
Kanad -> AllisonWhat avenues are available at booth for prospective management consultants?
Allison -> KanadThere are many opportunities here at Chicago Booth for people interested in management consulting. Apart from classes focused in operations and strategic management, one of the largest student organizations on campus, the Management Consulting Club (MCG), offers many resources for students. MCG does a fantastic job guiding students through the process from figuring out if consulting is the right path for you to preparing for case interviews. In addition to MCG, there are Career Advisers (Second year students who worked in consulting over the summer) and Career Coaches (Chicago Booth staff focused in career planning and navigation) to help you throughout the process, both in terms of guidance and preparation along the way.
Yesim -> EveryoneIvy, apologies for the premature send. Please ignore the portion after the "You can find out more about this year's conference on our website" Here is the actual website: http://cwib.weebly.com/cwib-fall-conference.html
Lynn -> AliciaDo you feel Booth has a diverse student population (previous career experience, age, ethnicity, nationality, etc) and how do you feel that enriches the Booth experience?
Alicia -> LynnThere is much more diversity in my class than I expected. The other night I had dinner with a group of 4 women, and we all had different jobs before school (consulting, PE, entrepreneur in South America, and working for Chicago Public Schools), lived in different cities, have different cultural backgrounds, and are pursuing different concentrations and future careers. This is a small example, but representative of my overall experience. There is a huge benefit to having this variety of perspectives in the classroom and in student activities, as I am able to learn from real world experiences of my classmates rather than basing my understanding off of an article or a book. I have learned more about cultures in India or the work environment in Germany than I have about financial accounting or statistics.
nanes85 -> KelseyWhy did you choose Booth over other schools?
Kelsey -> nanes85I chose Chicago Booth for the flexibility of its program and the rigor of its curriculum. The flexibility allows me to choose which courses I want to take and also choose when I want to take them. Booth is known for its discipline-, research-based approach, which spans all course offerings.
HD -> BethHi, could you please let me know what kind of activities/event are there for the booth mba students? Are they usually during weekdays or weekends? During the day or in the evening? What types of events are they? Thanks.
Beth -> HDBooth has activities for just about every interest. Even in my first quarter, I have been able to take part in many clubs. As a member of the Business Solutions Group, I am working on a consulting project in Chicago and building my skillset for a career in consulting. I am also in the Ski Club - we have had a few socials and after finals will be heading to Aspen for a week of skiing and fun. This is just a small sampling of student activities at Booth. You can check out the full list here: http://www.chicagobooth.edu/fulltime/beyondacad/FTstudentgroups.aspx. In addition to clubs, there are tons of social events, networking opportunities, and speakers. There are so many activities that you can definitely find a way to work things into your schedule.
Talha -> KristenHow do you get to build strong bonds with class mates given Chicago Booth's flexible circulum that does not have a focus on a core?
Kristen -> TalhaThere are multiple ways to bond at the beginning of first year. LEAD (especially during orientation) is the best way to bond with other first years. We have a huge event at Lake Geneva where all the first years do ropes courses and get to know each other in the evening. Also, first years tend to take the same classes so even though there is no core, you will see and meet other first years very easily.
JM -> LauraSince Booth's curriculum is so flexible, have you found it difficult to "design your own curriculum"? What kind of guidance is available to make the right set of course choices?
Laura -> JMI was quite intimidated by Booth's flexible curriculum, but have really enjoyed it and have had quite a bit of support in determining my class schedule. Before each quarter's bidding begins, I start thinking about what classes I think I'm interested in by reading descriptions, class evaluations, etc. I then schedule an appointment with my Academic Services advisor to discuss my plans with her and get her thoughts. We have a very good relationship and she has answered questions for me at the last minute and helped me plan not just my next quarter of classes, but the next year of classes to ensure I fulfill my requirements and concentrations. I also rely very heavily on my fellow classmates. I reach out to friends or classmates I've worked with in the past to get their thoughts. Everyone is very honest and generous with their time so I've never had an issue finding out more about classes.
Kwad -> CarrieHi all, and thank you for taking the time to speak with us. I visited Booth Live and had a great experience. My question pertains to the application process. I'd like to be an entrepreneur in the social media space and have an idea I'd like to work on. Should I focus on describing the idea and how Booth can help me accomplish it or should I talk about why I want to be an entrepreneur and how booth can help me?
Carrie -> KwadHi Kwad. I'm glad you had the opportunity to visit campus! In terms of the best approach to your application, it's entirely up to you. Since your idea and reasons behind being an entrepreneur may be intertwined, you might be able to talk about both. Otherwise, it might be best to reflect on what is most important to you and structure your responses around that.
kk -> Aliciacan you provide any information on the Internship between yr 1 and yr 2? Do most student pursue opportunities in chicago and if so how does Booth aid in networking for students not native to the area?
Alicia -> kkThe internship is a great way to test out a potential career and learn more about an industry or firm. Students find opportunities all over the world - many stayed in Chicago but most went other places. I had friends in New York, LA, Zambia, Chile, Boston, Dallas, Atlanta and everywhere in between. Booth career services provides a ton of support, from help learning best practices reaching out to alumni to facilitating on campus recruiting opportunities. There is a lot of support for everyone, regardless of home town or area of interest!
anya -> JoanneDoes an R3 applicant (for 2012 intake) face a signifcant disadvantge when compared to applicants from R1 or R2?
Joanne -> anyaHi Anya. We feel that there is always room for terrific applicants, regardless of round! However, traditionally, Round 3 can be tough if we get a large number of admitted Round 1 or 2 students who accept our offer of admission, leaving fewer spots in the class by the time we get to Round 3. Additionally, scholarship and fellowship opportunities are more limited as well, so if that's a concern for you, I'd encourage you to consider our Round 2 deadline of Jan. 4, 2012.
TheCofe -> CarrieIn terms of round 1 decisions, will we be notified by email? phone call if accepted? or just check our application status online? also, are candidates ever notified before the deadline or all on that day?
Carrie -> TheCofeWe will be releasing all decisions through our online application system on December 14th at 9am CST. You will be notified that your status has changed through an email at that time, and then you can log in to see your status!
Nina_Saxena -> KelseyCan you comment on your experiences with Random Walks at Booth?
Kelsey -> Nina_SaxenaI had a fantastic experience on my Random Walk and I highly recommend it! I went to South Africa. We traveled to Cape Town, Johannesburg and Stellenbosch. I went on a safari and went cage-diving with great white sharks. The best part about the trip was the great friends that I made. There were 14 of us and two second-year trip leaders. We became very close on the trip and see a lot of each other on campus. Random Walks are a great foray into b-school!
Antoinette -> CarrieRegarding Question 3- is it okay to include a picture of yourself as part of the pages, or would that be a worry with discrimination and photos?
Carrie -> AntoinetteHi, Antoinette. It's entirely up to you! We see a wide variety of approaches with the presentation, and you are welcome to include photos and text if you choose.
Kushal -> KristenHi Kristen, for someone interested in entrepreneurship in financial services (specifically investment banking), what courses would you recommend considering?
Kristen -> KushalHi Kushal. This depends on what your background is. If you need to get the fundamentals down, I would suggest taking Investments and Corporate Finance immediately to help with Investment Banking interviews. Also, Cases in Financial Management was especially useful because we discussed real world Investment Banking situations. With regards to Entrepreneurship, Commercializing Innovation is a great way to bolster your financial skills in an entrepreneurial setting.
caroaz -> AliciaCan anyone speak to the role of a LEAD facilitator? Selection criteria, training, and positive experiences.
Alicia -> caroazOne of my closest friends is a LEAD facilitator, and she has loved the experience. The selection criteria is not set in stone, and adjusts each year so the entire group of forty is diverse and balanced. The training consists of personal development, presentation skills, and a variety of skill sets relevant to teaching the LEAD modules and facilitating the LEAD program in the classroom. Each of my friends who has participated has found it to be very rewarding.
Kuwait -> LauraHi everyone - given Booth's strong quant. finance reputation, would you say there is a "herd mentality" for finance careers? i.e. if you are interested in corporate/management careers, do you feel like part of a small minority?
Laura -> KuwaitI would say that while there is a general interest in becoming strong in quantitative courses, there is not a herd mentality with finance careers. There are certainly many people who go into banking, but there are just as many (and more) who consider consulting, marketing, and other less traditional career paths. I believe there is quite a bit of support and information sharing for non-finance career paths which makes it easy to learn more and explore other options. There are also so many unique people here with unique backgrounds and interests that Booth has a culture of accepting and even embracing differences. I recruited for consulting and nonprofit and at no point felt like I was fighting against a herd or doing something less accepted. Even with nonprofit, which represents a smaller percentage of people at Booth, I had a group of classmates all interested in nonprofit jobs and we all helped one another out and worked with career services together to find great opportunities.
MidwestNative -> AllisonAllison -- can you tell us about your career transition and why you chose Booth as the place to help you make that transition?
Allison -> MidwestNativeSure, more than happy to speak to this! Prior to Booth, I worked in finance for two years, and then spent two years working in a very entrepreneurial environment, for a wine auction house. I came to Booth knowing that I wanted to build out my skill set as a professional (as my jobs really were the primary means of my business knowledge) and also to transition to a career in consulting. For me, Booth was the best option to round out the financial and analytical expertise I wanted to strengthen, and also supplement this with classes in managing and entrepreneurship. The flexible curriculum allows me to manage my classes and what I'm learning in accordance with my own goals. Plus, there are a lot of other people here in the same boat, so there's a great community of support and knowledge that people are more than willing to share!
Ivan_Ramil -> CarrieHow important in the application process is the GMAT or GRE? Is there any difference or preference?
Carrie -> Ivan_RamilHi Ivan. We only accept the GMAT at Chicago Booth at this time. In terms of its importance, it is one piece of your larger application, and helps us assess your academic aptitude.
Uttara -> YesimThis is a question for Yesim (and others). As an international student at Booth how does your experience differ from other Booth students, if at all? Do you find that the Booth network will be helpful in finding professional opportunities outside the US after graduation? What about within the United States does Booth offer guidance on navigating the recruitment process as a non-citizen?
Yesim -> UttaraHi Uttara! You will find that Chicago Booth has a very diverse community. I believe my personal experience as an international student has been mostly the same as those of American students. The only difference I have noticed with some fellow international classmates was during recruiting. There are definitely many valuable opportunities for international students to work in the US, but sometimes international students may find it harder to overcome the culture change and start recruiting within a couple weeks of starting school. However, our Career Services is phenomenal in supporting students throughout the recruiting process and I have found their guidance invaluable during my own career search. As for opportunities outside of the US, Career Services has an employer development team that is responsible for establishing relations with corporates around the world. Many of my friends have tapped into this network of global employers during their career search. You can find more information on this in our employment reports: http://www.chicagobooth.edu/corp/hire/employmentreports/
Jing -> BethHi, currently I live in New York and this is the only city I am familiar in US. Would you pls give me some descriptions about the life in Chicago? :)
Beth -> JingHi Jing. I spent most of my life on the east coast and wasn't sure exactly what to expect moving to the Midwest but I absolutely love living in Chicago. It's an amazing city! Like many students, I live downtown so I have easy access to all that the city has to offer. There are great restaurants, a fun night life scene, and I have really enjoyed going to comedy shows at Second City and IO improv theater. People in Chicago - and at Booth - tend to be really active in exploring the city and trying new things so there is never a dull moment in Chicago. I couldn't be happier with my new home!
Jason -> KristenGood morning. Thanks for taking time to answer our questions today. I am from California and I wanted to know how does your career center help students with careers if we want a job on the west coast?
Kristen -> JasonAlthough Booth is located in Chicago, we have a lot of companies recruiting from the West Coast such as Microsoft, Amazon, Intel, Cisco, Chevron, Mattel, etc. Also, Investment Banks and Consulting firms from all over the West Coast recruit here at Booth. Needless to say, if you want to return to California, you have plenty of opportunities to do so. Also, the Career Center will personally help you target companies on the West Coast and network with them if you are looking for something specific on the West Coast.
KH_Jung -> AliciaHi. I've learned through the CWiB website that there are mentoring programs offered at CWiB. It would be a wonderful chance to have female mentors, especially those who work at similar fields. Can you give me more details on this program?
Alicia -> KH_JungIn CWiB, we provide many ways for women to connect and support one another through recruiting, classes, and life at school in general. Our fall conference this year included a speed mentoring session, where women from our sponsor companies shared their wisdom and guidance with students. Within CWiB, we host many social and professional development events to connect women with similar interests. We tend not to emphasize career interests, as there are many other career-specific groups on campus focusing on that. We have also participated in an undergrad mentoring program, which is not currently active but may start up again next quarter. There are many ways to connect with and support fellow women at Booth!
Gaurav_Malhotra -> CarrieThere are many Universities in India and many of them have very different grading systems. In some universities 60% is distinction and in some universities 80% is distinction. What yardstick do you apply while evaluating GPA for people whose universities dont give GPAs?
Carrie -> Gaurav_MalhotraHi Gaurav. We are very familiar with different grading systems and the norms within certain countries. We always assess the transcript to help determine a students success within a particular institution.
dpatrice -> KelseyBooth is often stereotyped as finance/econ-centric, but I know that its marketing program continues to gain strength. As someone interested in marketing/brand management, what are some of the unique opportunities at Booth?
Kelsey -> dpatriceHi, dpatrice! I came to Chicago Booth specifically for its marketing program. I have a background in professional services marketing and was looking to acquire an analytical, data-driven marketing skill set, which is exactly what Booth offers in its Marketing curriculum. Specific marketing courses that I will take in my first year are Data-Driven Marketing, Marketing Research and Pricing--all within the Marketing Management concentration. The Kilts Center for Marketing is also a great resource to students. The Kilts Center offers a marketing mentorship program and a lecture series where marketing professional from diverse backgrounds come on campus to speak, among other programs.
Damola -> JoanneHi all. What do you look for in a candidate during the interview session?
Joanne -> DamolaHi Damola. The interview is a very important part of the process, but we hope it will be a great back and forth conversation between you and your interviewer (either an alumnus/alumna, or current second-year student). The goal is to find out more about you beyond your resume (our interview are "blind", so the only information your interviewer has is what's on your resume). You should expect to tell your story, but also provide examples of leadership, teamwork, or how you've worked through difficult situations. We're also learning more about your communications and interpersonal skills. Since it's a two-way conversation, we also encourage you to ask questions about Booth and what your interviewer's experiences have been to get more information for yourself about your fit for Booth.
stc0501 -> CarrieHi! Thanks for this chat. How much emphasis does Booth place on the breakdown of the GMAT score between quant & verbal? I have heard about having an 80/80 percentile breakdown even when you're scoring 700+, but do you have any insight on this?
Carrie -> stc0501We primarily look at your overall GMAT score, but will look to the breakdown to gain more information about your academic aptitude. We have no preferred breakdown of scores, and will always assess your GMAT scores in the context of your larger application (previous educational background, work experience, etc).
Aman -> JoanneWhat would be your advice to reapplicants. I have worked on all facets of my application and I think I am in a stronger place this year? How does Booth view reapllicants?
Joanne -> AmanHi Aman. We welcome reapplicants and they make up a good portion of our applicant pool each year. Because we do not offer feedback, we rely on you to take a critical look at your past application to make an honest assessment of where you can make improvements, which is sounds like you've done. We also encourage thoughtful and honest answers to the reapplicant question, which allows you an opportunity to talk about changes from a past application to the current one. Best of luck!
Chen -> LauraHi! My name is Jeannie, and I am looking to transition from a career in medicine into a career in VC. What are the things you love most about Booth? What are some changes you would like to see at Booth?
Laura -> ChenThere are many things I love most about Booth so it is hard to pick!! If I had to, though, I would probably say the culture and the people. I have been amazed by how interesting, kind, and giving the student body here really is. Everyone is very willing to help one another out, even when recruiting for the same job positions, and everyone is excited to be involved in many different activities. People are incredibly smart, but also very humble and kind. This relates slightly to the culture, my next favorite. There is a culture of independence yet collaboration here, which is difficult to describe, but incredibly rewarding. Booth is the type of place where you can truly create your own path (with classes, your career, which clubs you choose, etc), but also have a sense of community and support along the way. As for changes, I would love to see a bit more cohort involvement once LEAD ends, but that is something Booth is currently working on. I also didn't realize how much time recruiting would take up my first year, but it is great that so many companies come to campus so it is not really something you'd want to change!
Kuwait -> AliciaA key difference between Booth and other top bschools is the lack of a cluster system and/or core class requirements that everyone is required to take together, which results in a tightly knit group of 70-80 people. Do you think this affects the social atmosphere at Chicago, i.e. you have to be more proactive about meeting people?
Alicia -> KuwaitFor me, this was a huge benefit coming to Booth. I wanted a place where I would meet almost all of my classmates, and would have the flexibility to take classes with both first- and second-years. When you first start, you are in a cohort of 60 for LEAD, which helps you get to know people initially. Once classes begin, you have the freedom to interact with everyone on campus. It sounds intimidating, but since everyone is in the same situation, people are very friendly and open to meeting others. I think this is a great advantage to Booth - my network will include the classes of 2011, 2012 and 2013!
eric86 -> CarrieHello! From an admissions perspective, I understand that you need to validate someone's academic quantitative skills. For someone with a liberal arts educational background, but four years in investment banking/trading, would you look towards the professional experience for evidence of quantitative ability? Additionally, does this make the GMAT quantitative score even more important for someone with a quantitative academic record?
Carrie -> eric86Hi Eric. Many of our students come from liberal arts backgrounds, and it is in no way a hindrance to your application! We assess your application holistically and look for quantitative ability in many different areas (GMAT, professional experience, educational background, etc).
robwa -> KristenHi everyone! I would like to know how students feel about the bidding system for classes. Have you missed out on any classes that you really wanted to take because you didn't have enough points?
Kristen -> robwaThe bidding system is just a way to get students to prioritize their classes. If you really want one class, then you can throw all your points for bidding for that class. From personal observation (I haven't calculated this out) but I think that 90% of students get ALL of the classes they want for that quarter. That said, many courses are available throughout the year and offered on different days/times so there is always an opportunity to take a course if you didn't get a chance to take it in that specific quarter. Personally, I have taken all the classes I wanted to take in each quarter.
Minti_Ray -> AllisonDoes the flexibility of the curriculum ever make course selection difficult? What resources are available to assist in planning your academic schedule?
Allison -> Minti_RayGreat question! While the flexibility of the curriculum here at Booth sometimes makes all of choices here at Booth feel quite extensive, it really allows you to tailor and shape your experience in the way you want, allowing you to get out of this experience what you want. Each first year student is assigned to an Academic Advisor with whom you're paired for your time at Booth. You meet with them to discuss picking your classes and concentrations. I meet with mine every quarter to go over my classes and how I'm progressing toward my concentrations! In addition, second year students are great resources to leverage and ask about classes and professors.
Max -> JoanneHi Carrie or Joanne, I'm an engineer in product development very interested in changing careers in to equity research. I want a Booth MBA to nurture me with the financial, management and economics knowledge to help me succeed in my new career. What advice could you offer me to make my explanation convincing in the essays as to why I want to make this career change?
Joanne -> MaxHI Max. It's up to you to decide how you want to explain your career change. Some things to consider: Why are you interested in the change and the new industry? What do you see yourself doing post-MBA in that industry? What makes you passionate about your future industry? What are your specific knowledge gaps that the MBA can address? What have you done to learn more about and research the industry and the opportunities it presents? It's great to consider changing careers, but it's important to convince the committee that you understand what you're looking for, and how the MBA will get you to where you want to go.
Josiah -> AliciaHi, is Chicago a safe place to live in?
Alicia -> JosiahChicago is absolutely a safe place to live. Like any city, there are some dicier areas. However, it's perfectly easy to stay in areas you feel comfortable in while attending Booth. I am from a tiny, rural town, and have found Chicago to be very comfortable and inviting.
Vedant -> CarrieHi All, I wanted some direction in regards to the extra-curricular activities for application purposes. I have both formal and informal extra curricular experiences. Is one given preference over the other? Can you shed some light on this part of the application.
Carrie -> VedantHi Vedant. In the extra-curricular section of the application, we are hoping to gain a better perspective of your involvement outside of your specific job. For some, this may include activities at their employer but outside of their specific job description, as well as activities outside of work. You are welcome to share both professional and personal extra-curricular activities as they are relevant to your candidacy.
gayathri -> YesimWhat kinds of support systems are there to help women balance different priorities during or after graduation from Booth?
Yesim -> gayathriHi Gayathri! There are four organizations at Chicago Booth that are tailored specifically to women: Chicago Women in Business (CWiB), Chicago Women in Business Alumnae Network (CWIBAN), Mothers at Booth (MaB) and The University of Chicago Women in Business Group (UCWBG). I'd like to specifically talk about how CWiB helps women balance priorities. CWiB is one of the largest and most active full-time organizations on campus. It aims to connect and provide support to the women in the full-time program at Chicago Booth, through networking events, lunch speaker series, partnerships with other organizations, mentoring programs, and social events. I think one of the main advantages of being a CWiB member is having access to a welcoming medium where you get to interact with other women, share your experience, learn from theirs and receive support. Women also find valuable opportunities to network with companies of interest through CWiB's exclusive professional events. You can find more information on these organizations at http://www.chicagobooth.edu/fulltime/community/diversity/women.aspx
Mala21 -> AllisonApproximately how many hours a week are spent in classes in the first year?
Allison -> Mala21Most first year students will take 3 classes in two of the quarters, and 4 classes in the remaining quarter. Classes are 3 hours once per week (in most cases), but the time to prepare for class varies depending on subject matter, your background and incoming knowledge, and the professor.
HollyG -> LauraLaura, what kind of activities do the 'Net Impact' and 'Give Something Back' organizations do, and what other types of social impact opportunities does Booth have?
Laura -> HollyGHi Holly! There are many types of activities that Net Impact and GSB (Give Something Back) organize, but I'll try to touch on a few. I worked with Net Impact in two main ways. First, I was a part of the Board Fellows program where you are paired with a nonprofit in Chicago and sit on their board during the winter and spring quarters and complete a pro bono consulting project for them. I enjoyed my work so much that the board of my organization actually asked me to stay involved so I am now still a member. It was incredibly rewarding! They organize many different types of nonprofit consulting projects like this. Second, I used Net Impact as part of my job search as I was partly interested in nonprofit opportunities. They organized recruiting events and meetings to help those of us looking for career opportunities. They also host a conference each year to network and learn about new social impact initiatives. As for Give Something Back, they organize more purely volunteering type opportunities. For example, I tutor once a week at a local elementary school, help out with the annual toy drive, and attend fundraising events. There are many things I'm missing, but the bottom line is - there are a ton of ways to get involved with social impact!
paulahuo -> BethI'm interested in taking a leadership role in CWiB, I just like working with and hanging out with smart and cool girls. Do you think it is realistic for me as a first year MBA student to organize the conferences and other speaker series events while going through the recruiting madness and handling all the school works in my first year?
Beth -> paulahuoThere are definitely opportunities to take on a leadership role in CWiB and other organizations during your first year. During the fall, CWiB hosts its conference and looks for first year volunteers, which is a great way to get involved with the organization and certainly fits in with the recruiting/academic schedule. There are so many ways to take a leadership position at Booth from the start - through CWiB, planning a recruiting trek, running for a position on your cohort Board, and many more.
GD86 -> AliciaDoes not being able to stay on campus hamper the kind of 'life long friendships' that other schools' students talk about?
Alicia -> GD86On the contrary, I think the flexibility of people living around the city allows students to form stronger bonds and explore more of Chicago. Friendships extend beyond a dorm-like connection, and people are able to connect based on hobbies, interests, shared love of food, etc. There is one main area downtown where most Booth students live. I live in another neighborhood called Old Town, and I feel completely connected to my classmates and the community. I love this aspect of my b school life!
jdlange01 -> KelseyFor those students that were admitted to other top schools (HBS, Stanford, Wharton, etc.), what were the 1-3 things that made you choose Booth?
Kelsey -> jdlange01Hi, jdlange01! The three reasons that I chose Chicago Booth are the following: the flexibility and rigor of its program; its analytical, discipline-based curriculum; and the unparalleled faculty. For example, Richard Thaler, Austan Goolsbee and Raghuram Rajan are all teaching this year! Additionally, professors are completely accessible to students.
Judy -> CarrieHi, I quit my job in this May, it is a big gap for the applicants of the MBA program?
Carrie -> JudyHi Judy. We receive applications from many candidates who are not currently working. In the employment section of the application, you have the opportunity to share why you left your current employer, which will help us understand your specific situation. Additionally, you may also consider providing an explanation in the optional essay. It will not reflect negatively on your candidacy, but will help us understand what you have been doing during that time.
Maha -> Carriehi, why doesn't Booth send feedback to rejected candidates?
Carrie -> MahaHi, Maha. Unfortunately, we simply do not have the staff capacity to provide feedback to denied and waitlisted candidates.
JP -> KristenCan you elaborate a little more about the New Venture Lab? What does a typical class look like in terms of activities / syllabus?
Kristen -> JPFor New Venture Lab, most of our classes are guest speakers who have started successful businesses. One class, a lawyer taught us about which corporate structures are most beneficial if you want the best tax treatment or if you plan to request funding for a VC firm. The syllabus and sponsoring companies are dynamic from quarter to quarter but one thing that remains constant is that you will be working in a team of 4 - 5 members outlining the scope with your client, keeping the client updated on the progress and doing a final presentation for the management team. The timeline of the project is driven by the team to meet client needs. While there is some reading for class, most of the work is directed toward completing the final project.
0cp2012 -> LauraHi everyone, I have questions about student life. Do most students participate in the travel trip prior to the first year? Where (Hyde Park, Chicago, etc.) do most students choose to live? thanks!
Laura -> 0cp2012Hi! I would say that about half of the incoming student body participates in the random walk trips before coming to Booth. I went on a trip to Brazil and lead a trip to Panama. It was a great experience and I met many of my friends, first and second years, on the trips. That said, it is okay if you don't go on one! There are plenty of opportunities to meet classmates and have fun as soon as you get to Booth. As for living, many students live in the downtown loop area. I'm not sure of percentages, but probably close to 40% live there. Some also live in Hyde Park to be near campus and then the rest of the student body is spread out in the other parts of Chicago (Lincoln Park, Wicker Park, Gold Coast, etc).
Moderator -> EveryoneThanks for your great questions! Keep them coming.
HD -> CarrieIs interview required? If it's selective, how does booth decide if an applicant needs an interview?
Carrie -> HDHi, HD. We do require an interview for admission, but offer interviews on an invitation-only basis. As part of our review process, all applications will be read by 2-3 members of the Admissions Committee before an interview decision is rendered.
KH_Jung -> JoanneAlso, I've noticed that those who have full-time work experience of 3 years or less are classified as an early career applicant. I currently have a total of 3year and 1month experience and will continue to work till the fall semester. Will I be evaluated based on the early career applicant criteria?
Joanne -> KH_JungWe do not evaluate Early Career Applicants in any different way than those with more work experience. The difference is that we maintain awareness that early career applicants may have fewer opportunities for leadership or supervision or other opportunities afforded to those that are at more senior levels. Each application is evaluated individually and holistically, which is an important part of how we do things here at Booth.
Ivan_Ramil -> AliciaKelsey: For just married couples, how would you describe the life at Booth?
Alicia -> Ivan_RamilLife at Booth for married couples is fun and busy. I think it all depends on the experience you want to create. For some people, school is an opportunity to slow down and catch up with their spouse. For me, school was a chance to challenge myself with multiple co-chair roles, and therefore I am just as busy as I was when I was working. My husband is busy with work, but makes time to attend Booth social events even if I can't be there. The community is very welcoming to students and partners alike, and you can choose your level of involvement!
KatieR -> AllisonDoes Career Services offer any special assistance for students who are career-changers? If not, do you think changing careers will be an impediment during the recruiting season?
Allison -> KatieRHi Katie! I definitely don't think that changing careers is an impediment while in recruiting season. Career Services offers great programming, plus one-on-one coaching, from the start of the process (picking the industry you're interested in, for instance, to resume review and interview preparation). It definitely helps if you have a general idea of what you're interested in transitioning into, as you can be much more targeted in terms of how you allocate your time, but there are many opportunities to meet different firms and companies long before you start submitting resumes and applications. In addition, many Career Advisers (second-year students) were career changers themselves, and can help with general and specific questions and preparation to make sure you're in a good place before recruiting starts.
Minti_Ray -> YesimCan you share the types of programming and resources CWiB offers female students? Is there a strong support network for female students both during and after the program?
Yesim -> Minti_RayHi there! CWiB is one of the largest and most active organizations on campus. In a nutshell, we aim to connect and provide support to the women in the full-time program, through networking events, lunch speaker series, partnerships with other organizations, mentoring programs, and social events. I especially want to mention CWiB's capstone event, Fall Conference, which focuses primarily on professional development and offers members an exclusive medium to learn about the experiences of successful women in business and interact with our over 30 corporate sponsors. Many of our members make meaningful contacts with companies they are interested in during Fall Conference. After graduation, CWiB members are transferred over to CWIBAN, the Alumnae Network of Chicago Women in Business. This is a very valuable network that you can tap into anytime in the future. Please feel free to visit our website to learn more about CWiB activities: http://cwib.weebly.com/
YuLyadova -> BethHello everybody! I am a 2012 applicant and really want to join Booth MBA community! I want to learn strategy and to get as much practical experience during eucation as possible. Which classes, clubs and other activities can you recommend me? Thank you very much!
Beth -> YuLyadovaBooth offers many opportunities to gain practical experience. I am a member of the Business Solutions Group, which is a student club that gives first years a chance to work on a real consulting project with their peers. Right now, I am working with a Chicago-based client on identifying opportunities to develop new products for their customer base. We work with the client just as a hired consulting team would and are expected to deliver actionable recommendations in January. This is a new experience for many of us, but we receive plenty of guidance from the school and feedback to help us improve our skills - we have second-year coaches to provide us guidance and get feedback from consultants from top firms throughout the process.
Yuliya -> LauraHello, Laura! I have a specific question. How did you develop your leadership skills in Chicago Booth? Which activities could advice based on your experience. Thank you!
Laura -> YuliyaGreat question! LEAD is the first significant opportunity to develop leadership skills. During LEAD, you have the chance to practice your public speaking, work as a team member in many different settings, and read a 360 review to learn what your coworkers have said are your strengths and weaknesses. It is a very enlightening experience in which you learn about your leadership strengths and weaknesses. From there, you have many opportunities to implement what you've learned. I have worked on teams both in the classroom and outside of the classroom in activities such as Board Fellows to practice and improve my leadership skills. You can also choose to continue to develop them your second year by applying for co-chair positions, LEAD facilitator positions, and many others. I hope that helps!
Adity -> CarrieHi, I wished to know whether an interview alone be a make or break factor for admission? What percentage of importance do you assign to an interview as regards to the rest of the application? Thanks !
Carrie -> AdityHi, Adity. The interview is one piece of the overall admissions process, and while important, is rarely a "make-or-break" piece. Your goals, essays, letters of recommendation, etc are all equally important in the overall admissions decision. The interview provides an in-person assessment of your candidacy, which we then take into consideration with your written application.
Ivan_Ramil -> KristenHow does Booth give international business exposure? Not only focused in the US, also LATAM, Africa, etc..
Kristen -> Ivan_RamilMany of the classes at Booth have an international element to it. However, many students who want international exposure participate in IBEP, in which they study abroad at another MBA program for a quarter.
Tara -> KelseyHi all, I'm Tara, thanks for answering our questions today. I am really interested in the Marketing program, perhaps Kelsey can you talk about how you found the courses and Labs so far?
Kelsey -> TaraHi, Tara! The marketing program at Chicago Booth is really strong. In terms of courses, I will have taken Marketing Strategy, Data-Driven Marketing and Marketing Research by the time first year is finished. Marketing Research has a lab component to it. In the class, student teams collect and analyze data and develop the strategic implications of research findings for client sponsors. I'm taking it next quarter and am excited to get some hands-on, real world experience.
Bruno -> CarrieHi guys, I'm a reapplicant for Booth and I see that 2012 entering class essays ask for a more general experience towards leadership compared to previous years'. Do you see a significant change in the class profile for the next years? Thanks!
Carrie -> BrunoHi Bruno. Although our essay questions have changed, we are not expecting a significant change in the class profile for this year. We are committed to admitting a diverse class on a variety of dimensions.
Gaurav_Malhotra -> AliciaDoes Booth has any concept of celebrating different cultures by organizing cultural events at its campus etc?
Alicia -> Gaurav_MalhotraBooth has a fantastic set of student groups that bring cultures to life! Diwali boat cruises, Sukkot dinner and Oktoberfest outings are just a small example of the events that have been organized so far this fall. There are also themed LPFs, which are our regular Friday appetizer and beverage activities, where groups can theme the food to celebrate holidays or events. These activities are always open to the entire student body, and bring a wealth of cultural knowledge and fun!
Hanmba -> CarrieGood morning. Could you please let me know how do people explain unusual things in their application material to the admission committee? My academic record shows on two distributional electives I scored 0 and it was an error: I dropped those two courses (students were allowed to drop electives at the beginning of the semester) but the then newly installed IT system did not remove the two courses from my record. I talked with the student office in the university but they could not help. It does not affect my GPA in any way since it also shows credit as 0 for the two courses.I believe that I need to explain but I don’t find anywhere appropriate for this issue in the online application form.
Carrie -> HanmbaHi, Hanmba. You are welcome to share this clarification within the optional essay or within the academic information section.
kk -> Kelseywhen do the random walk trips take place?
Kelsey -> kkRandom Walks take place at the end of August right before orientation begins. It's a great time to take a break before school ramps up and meet some of your fellow classmates. I highly recommend going on a Random Walk!
Anand -> CarrieIs TOEFL required for student who completed their undergraduate studies in India ? In particular from the University of Madras, which is a top tier school and where the medium of instruction is English ?
Carrie -> AnandHi Anand. Applicants may waive the TOEFL requirement if they have attended an institution where the medium of instruction is English. As a result, in your example, the TOEFL would not be necessary.
christine -> LauraLaura, can you tell me about your experience as a Board Fellow? Which board did you sit on and what was your project? How do you plan to incorporate that experience into your career at LEK (if at all)?
Laura -> christineI'd love to! It was a great experience. I was a part of the Horizons for Youth board. It is a program that supports underpriveleged students by providing mentoring and tutoring both after school and during the summer. We had two projects. First, the program has several undocumented students and they were looking for research on which colleges accept undocumented students, which grants they could apply for, and how to best approach that challenge. The second project was on their overall brand. They were looking to expand awareness of the organization in Chicago. We researched how other nonprofits have done this and how they can move forward. I am interested in working for a nonprofit in the long term so I wanted to be involved with a board to learn more about nonprofits and how they operate. It was also helpful to work on a consulting project, even if pro bono, to gain that experience and learn how to manage timelines and work with others. I believe that will be valuable at LEK.
Minti_Ray -> JoanneI recently attended a Booth Live event. During the mock application assessment, some prospective students highlighted that the recommenders had not discussed why the applicant needed an MBA at this point in time. Is this something we should ask our recommenders to address?
Joanne -> Minti_RayHi Minti (good to "see" you again!). While not mandatory, timing of the MBA may be one of many topics you decide to discuss with your recommenders, so that they can, on paper, offer their support for this next phase of your life and work experience. Overall, though, it's not required and we'd only suggest that you make time to work with these folks to be sure they clearly understand your future path and plans, which can assist them in writing the best possible letters of support for you.
lasilva -> KristenHi! I've applied, interviewed, and waiting a decision for first round. Can you talk more about your experience working with the Polsky Center?
Kristen -> lasilvaMy interaction with the Polsky Center is limited to my participation in New Venture Lab as I am not starting up my own business but from what I know from others is that the Polsky Center is a resource to students to answer any issues, provide advice, and connect students to professionals pertinent to the start-up.
V-man -> JoanneHow does Booth look at GPA. Can one bad year out of four impact a candidate's chances significantly.
Joanne -> V-manLike everything else in the application, the GPA is one of many factors that we look at, and since Booth reads applications so holistically, a poor GPA in one year will not, in itself, negatively impact the evaluation of an application.
laininwan -> AllisonReading your bios, a lot of you have quantitative/consulting backgrounds from your "previous life" working before school. For those of you who came from backgrounds outside of these fields, how has your experience at Booth been? As a poli sci undergrad myself, I'm looking to challenge myself quantitatively at my own pace. Could you talk a little more to that aspect?
Allison -> laininwanI think that Booth is definitely a place where you can challenge yourself quantitatively, and the flexible curriculum here allows you to do that at your own pace, in the manner that's best for you. I was an English major coming out of undergrad, so did not have a background in analytical finance or economics. I was a little nervous that I wouldn't be able to "keep up", but definitely have found that to not be the case. The Foundations classes (Accounting, Statistics, and Microeconomics) provide a great base from which the rest of your education will grow and develop, and you'll be more than ready for higher level classes after taking the foundations. My professors this quarter are great, as well, and do a wonderful job making these classes accessible, and yet challenging.
Ceci1 -> KelseyKelsey, I've heard often that there is a large alumni network for people who are interested in finance, I wanted to get your perspective about Marketing and how you feel the alumni or support network at Booth helped you make career decisions.Thanks!
Kelsey -> Ceci1There is a great support network both on- and off-campus for students looking to enter the Marketing field. So far in my first quarter at Booth, there has been a tremendous amount of marketing recruitment activity on campus, so there certainly is no lack of options for students pursuing careers in marketing! The alumni whom I've reached out to have been very receptive and are always looking to help Booth alums looking to enter the field. Chicago Booth has a strong database and network of Marketing alum in Brand Management, Marketing Communications and Advertising roles.
Irene_C -> YesimHello. I am excited to apply to Chicago's Full-Time MBA program next year. I am wondering how being a part of the Women's network has changed/shaped your experience at Booth (i.e. has the women's network been mainly a social function? have you leveraged the women's network in recruiting?, etc.).
Yesim -> Irene_CHi Irene! CWiB has definitely been a big part of my experience here at Booth. So much so that I really wanted to help lead the organization forward by becoming a co-chair. CWiB definitely creates many opportunities for members to socialize, share their experiences, and simply have fun through events such as wine mixers, professional make-up sessions, poker nights. However, it also has a very strong professional development element that I found invaluable as a first year student. As I have mentioned in my previous posts, our capstone event, Fall Conference and Networking, is a day-long conference that includes keynote speeches, panel discussions, interactive sessions, networking lunch and a networking cocktail hour with CWIB corporate sponsors. The exclusivity of the conference and the camaraderie between our members and women representatives from our sponsors allow for a very open, relaxed and fun environment where women get to share their experiences and make meaningful contacts. You can find more information on CWiB on our website: http://cwib.weebly.com/index.html
Kuwait -> CarrieFor interviews - do they have to be on campus, or can you arrange for off-campus interviews as well? Are interviews with alumni or admissions staff? Specifically, I work in Kuwait, which is just a bit far from Chicago!
Carrie -> KuwaitHi Kuwait. You have the option to interview on campus or off campus, depending upon which is more convenient for you. On-campus interviews are conducted by alumni or Admissions Fellows, who are second year students that are part of the Admissions Committee. Off-campus interviews are conducted by alumni admissions volunteers. Where you choose to interview makes no impact on your admissions decision, so feel free to select what works best for you.
Max -> LauraDoes Booth offer any courses that use the "Case Method"?
Laura -> MaxHi Max, I'm happy to answer that. I have taken many classes at Booth that use the case method. There is definitely a mix of class types here: lab, lecture, case, etc and you would likely gain experience in most types during your time at Booth. I have taken many classes that focused heavily on the case method such as competitive strategy and marketing strategy and I have also taken classes that have been a mix of case and lecture, which I find incredibly helpful. For example, in corporation finance, we are assigned a case each week that applies what we learned in class the week before. We spend the first half of class discussing the case in detail and then spend the second half of class learning new material from the professor. I enjoy the mix of opportunities that Booth's curriculum offers.
TheCofe -> BethOne unique aspect of the booth experience seems to be the lack of a cohort / learning team structure. As a student, how has this structure (or lack thereof) been beneficial?
Beth -> TheCofeFor me, Booth offers the ideal balance of flexibility and structure. We have the opportunity to tailor our learning experience to our unique goals from day 1, which is important to me. Next quarter I'm planning to take classes that really focus on my future career goals which will be helpful for my internship and the interview process. At the same time, we do have a cohort system to provide community. We go through the LEAD program with a cohort so we are meeting with a smaller group of 60 every during the first few weeks of school in addition to participating in other activities. Booth organizes Fall Frolics - a cohort night where we compete in volleyball, dodgeball and other fun activities against each other. There is also Golden Gargoyles, in which cohorts create short films. These activities bring together cohort members and are a lot of fun. I am also the social chair of my cohort and am planning fun monthly activities to bring us back together during 2012.
Mario -> KristenCurrently I belong to the Colombian red cross and I must dedicate at least 16 hours of service per month. The same would be in the American Red Cross. However, I'm not quite sure if I will have the time if I am engaged in an mba (once I've been accepted). How hard is your "workload" per week and would you advise me to quit the red cross before entering the school?
Kristen -> MarioYour workload really depends on the courses you take as classes vary in intensity. However, I spend approximately 5 - 8 hours per week solely on my extracurricular activities at Booth so I think if you manage your time correctly, 16 hours per month is doable.
Tara -> AllisonFor Allison : I am a career changer from a Software background into family business in real estate, where I have developed an interest in marketing, can you tell me about your transition experience?
Allison -> TaraHi Tara! I've met more career switchers (like me) here at Booth than I ever expected would be here! I came in knowing, generally speaking, that I was interested in consulting, but have taken the opportunity of having so many companies on campus to also explore and learn an
JP -> AliciaI would like to understand what makes the Booth program "rigorous." It's a term I hear a lot about Booth, but would like to understand what defines rigor. Is it the competition in the class? The demands of the faculty? Volume of homework? Thanks!
Alicia -> JPI think Booth is rigorous in that it challenges you to think beyond what was taught in the classroom to ensure that you internalize the meaning and the logic. This is not always related to homework volume, but is more about a discipline-based curriculum to prepare students to adapt their knowledge to any environment in the future. The rigor comes from doing thoughtful preparation. There is rarely or never "mindless" homework or reading. I want to emphasize that the class is NOT at all competitive. In fact, I have found the opposite: classmates who have a strong understanding of a subject are happy to work with those who are new to it, in order to help them.
Disha -> LauraHow much do MBA and undergraduate students mix at Booth?
Laura -> DishaTo be honest, there is not a tremendous amount of interaction between the undergraduate and MBA students here at Booth. That is primarily because Booth does not have an undergraduate business program. That said, as an MBA student, there are opportunities to serve as a mentor to undergraduates in a few different ways. For example, Booth students can serve as mentors to undergraduates who are working on pro bono consulting projects. I do believe that undergraduates are also able to attend some Booth classes.
Moderator -> EveryoneThanks for all of your great questions! We will try to get to as many as we can.
Peter -> CarrieDo you consider the quality of an undergraduate institution a candidate attended?
Carrie -> PeterHi Peter. While we do take the quality of a program into consideration, we are more concerned about your performance in the program, as many factors impact undergraduate college selection.
Talha -> Aliciais there an infrastructure club or energy finance at chicago? If so what sort activities do they hold?
Alicia -> TalhaThere is an energy group, which holds a variety of events to help students learn more about the industry, including lunch n learns with companies, treks, and speakers. Check out their website to learn more! http://www.boothenergy.org/
Allison -> EveryoneHi Tara - sorry about the split reply! To finish up what I was saying, I've taken advantage of all of the companies coming on campus to get to know what different businesses do. I've found a great support network here for career switchers in terms of resume review, learning about what it's really like to work in a certain industry or for a certain company, and have gotten great guidance as to how to highlight my transferable skills.
jessicab -> JoanneHello, my questions are for an admissions associate. I would like to think I am a very strong applicant, but in October I had my first baby, and now I am nervous about the one-year ‘gap’ in my work experience that will appear when I apply. Russia’s maternity laws are such that I have been on leave since late August, 2011, and I plan to stay at home with my baby for 9 months. Although I will still be officially employed, I am taking 9 months off. This means that my essays, resume and recommendation letters will all be about experience up to August 2011. Would admissions want an explanation of why there is a gap from August 2010 until September 2011? Would this look odd? Any advice on how to approach this? Would it hurt me to explain that I haven’t been working for a year because I just had a baby?
Joanne -> jessicabFirst of all, congratulations on becoming a mom! Yes, you should definitely use the essays (and, in particular, the optional essay) to explain the gap in your employment. It is not odd at all; there are many reasons why people have gaps in employment, including the birth of a child, and since we read applications holistically, this one factor will not in itself negatively impact you. It is always better to provide an explanation for these types of situations. Additionally, know that Booth offers a student club for moms, moms-to-be or anyone who wants to explore having a family through a student group called Mothers at Booth or M@B. You can learn more at http://www.chicagobooth.edu/fulltime/beyondacad/groups/mab.aspx.
Diana -> BethHello! I was wondering if any of you have participated in the Business Solutions Group. If so, I would love to hear how the experience was in working with your clients/teammates. Additionally, for a person who doesn't have a background in strategy/management consulting, is it difficult to gain entry into the club? I understand that there is an application process.
Beth -> DianaHi Diana. I spoke a little earlier about BSG as a great opportunity for hands on experience. To follow up, there is an application process to be selected to participate; however, no specific background is necessary. They are really looking to build diverse teams of students who are enthusiastic about working on a project. My BSG team is mostly made up of people with non-consulting backgrounds ranging from private equity to hi-tech. I think this is part of what makes it such a great group because we are all learning from each other and bringing unique insights to our clients.
JadeX -> JoanneI changed my job to PE industry this May and probably still want to return to this industry after graduation. Do you see this maybe too-recent change if I apply for 2012 program,given that I will have only 1 year in this industry as a disadvantage?
Joanne -> JadeXBecause we read applications so holistically, there is no one factor in anyone's application that in itself will negatively impact an application, including a career change. Your job will be to explain to the committee in your essays why now is the right time to pursue an MBA, and what you hope to get out of the program, including your goals post-MBA.
Amandeep -> CarrieDue to certain constraints I cannot visit Booth. How important is it whether the candidate has visited the school?
Carrie -> AmandeepHi Amandeep. We recommend that candidates visit campus to help determine whether or not we are a fit and to get a better understanding of the culture and community at Booth. We understand that this is not possible for all candidates, and therefore it has no bearing on the admissions process.
JP -> KristenHi Kristen - was it hard for you to move into clean technology? And can you speak to opportunities available for students from non-engineering backgrounds to dive deeper into the industry?
Kristen -> JPMy situation was unique in that I networked for awhile to switch into the industry prior to joining the MBA program. For Booth, the Energy club and the Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship provide opportunities in which you can meet companies in the industry. If you are looking for something very specific within Clean Tech our Alumni database and the Career Center are very useful resources to get in touch with companies in the space.
Moderator -> EveryoneWe have 10 minutes left in the chat. We will try to answer as many questions as we can about life at Chicago Booth with the time we have left.
espinoso -> YesimFor current students, what do you think about the non disclosure of grades to recruiters, which I believe is voted by students at the beggining of the MBa? I think it is helpful to increase the collaborative environment, but I would like your input in this regard. Thank you in advance for your comments!
Yesim -> espinosoHi there! Yes, Grade Non-Disclosure is voted by students every year. I personally really appreciate the fact that it minimizes the competition among students within classes. As you have noted this allows for a much more collaborative environment where students are encouraged to share their learnings with one another, both in and out of group-work. I have also found that this does not result in "slacking" in the majority of my classmates as most Chicago Booth students seem to display a dedication to knowledge and will not waste the opportunity to learn from such a selective body of students and professors.
Rachel2014 -> CarrieHi Carrie, for the PPT presentation, the website recommends PDFing it in order to preserve the formatting. However, PPT animation (for example, clicking through a presentation and layering multiple text boxes on one slide) is not possible in PDF. Will the admissions committee view the PPT presentations in slideshow format?
Carrie -> Rachel2014Hi Rachel. We will be viewing all presentations in a PDF format, which unfortunately means that animation is not possible.
MidwestNative -> AliciaWhat do you think is the biggest misconception among applicants about Booth's MBA program?
Alicia -> MidwestNativeI think the biggest misconception is that Booth students are only interested in finance. My classmates come from a wide variety of backgrounds and are studying many different areas, from marketing to entrepreneurship to strategy. There are a lot of great finance professors and classes here and I certainly wouldn't want to downplay that, but we have strengths in a lot of other areas too! I also remember hearing that Booth students would not be very social. I can assure you that is not at all the case. There is something fun going on every night of the week!
MDF -> AllisonI'm interested in pursuing an internship and career in strategy consulting but I have no experience in this industry. Since recruiting for internships start so early on in the year, is there enough time for someone like me to prepare for consulting recruiting and master the case interview in that short of time? Or should I be preparing for the case interview prior to classes beginning?
Allison -> MDFThere is definitely plenty of time when you get to school to prepare for consulting recruiting and case interviews. Career Services establishes a great timeline for both students and recruiters, which allows you to settle into life at Booth before recruiting ramps up, and clubs like the Management Consulting Group offer resume review, interview prep, and learning opportunities all once you're on campus. Definitely take the time over the summer to relax and think about your priorities, as you'll have plenty of time once you're on campus to master cases!
Talha -> CarrieAny advice with regard to Essay #3, on the information content of each slide? Should we follow standard corporate presentation format or can we put in more information?
Carrie -> TalhaHi Talha. We use the term "presentation" lightly, as you are welcome to design the content in the manner in which you feel most comfortable. We chose the word presentation, as opposed to essay, to encourage applicants to think differently about their approach.
Ivan_Ramil -> LauraFrom your view, why Booth is different from any other top ten MBA programs?
Laura -> Ivan_RamilHi Ivan, that's a great question. While I can only speak to Booth and not other schools, I do believe we are unique in many ways. I believe Booth is a place where you can truly define your own path with the support you need. You are able to choose your own class schedule and focus on classes that are most important to you or that will most help your future career plans. You are also able to explore different career opportunities and have support to do so even in the most non-traditional career. The Career Services office helps students truly determine which path is best for them and then how to pursue that path. You are able to choose to be a part of as many or as few clubs as you'd like as well. These points all just speak to the idea that you can make your Booth experience your own and focus on what is most important to you and you'll have the support to do it! It is an environment where being unique is a good thing.
Ceci1 -> BethBeth, I am interested in the International Business program; were you interested in a specific region right from the start, and how did you decide to pursue this? Also, what sort of programs / electives can you take in tandem with this program to increase your knowledge of a certain region's business culture/practices? Thanks!
Beth -> Ceci1Hi Ceci1. I am pursuing a concentration in International Business, which is different from the International MBA program. A concentration requires taking courses in International Business at Booth, while the International MBA, has language proficiency and study abroad requirements in addition to course requirements. I decided to pursue the concentration because I am interested in working globally but do not have a specific region in mind. There are also so many courses and activities I want to take advantage of at Booth and a concentration in International Business is very flexible so I can still get that strong foundation in International Business through coursework and pursue other concentrations at Booth at the same time.
Catalina_Moncada -> YesimI would like to occupy a chair in one of the student groups since the start. What type of responsibilities does a group chair normally have?
Yesim -> Catalina_MoncadaHi Catalina! There are many student groups you can get involved in as soon as you get here. However, please note that co-chairs are typically chosen in the Spring quarter of first year. Typical co-chair responsibilities include representing the club in Admissions and Administration events, overseeing finances, enlisting corporate sponsors and student members, and organizing social and professional development events.
AR -> CarrieDo you think applying in the second round of admissions does not affect my chances of getting an admit to Booth?
Carrie -> ARHi, AR. We receive the largest volume of applications in Round 2, and as a result, extend many offers of admission. As a result - you are not disadvantaged when applying in Round 2.
Mala21 -> CarrieDo all interviews have in person? Does Booth offer for example skype interviews where there are no alumni in your area?
Carrie -> Mala21We strive to offer in-person options for all interviews. If we do not have an alumni interviewer in your area, we will offer the option of a phone or Skype interview.
Aman -> AliciaHi, can you tell me about the special boost that Chicago Women in Business provides to women who want to be leaders?
Alicia -> AmanCWiB is designed to provide women support and information during their time at Booth. We host professional development events such as a Women's Health Lunch n Learn and company-specific women's initiative sessions, and social events such as Poker Night with a statistics professor and a breast cancer fundraiser. Our fall conference is our biggest event, and includes participants from our sponsor companies so CWiB members can have a more personal audience as recruiting kicks off. The support, social outlet, and network are big advantages.
Sid -> BethIs there another feature that makes Booth unique aside from the flexible curriculum?
Beth -> SidAside from the flexible curriculum, I think that Booth is unique because it is a very student-driven program. Students are very involved in Booth's leadership, from serving on the admissions committee to actually teaching the only required course at Booth, LEAD. Booth really trusts the students to shape the school and the classes that come after them and for these reasons allows us to take a really proactive role in leading the university.
AR -> JoanneWhat is the one thing that is common in all students admitted to Booth?
Joanne -> ARHi AR. Easy answer to that one: nothing! That's the great thing about Booth; no two students are alike and everyone truly bring something unique to the class, such as work experience, languages spoken, cities lived in, parents, married/single, and the list goes on! However, I will say that in my experience, our students do share some common characteristics; they are passionate, dynamic, engaging, ready for the challenge of the MBA and excited to be part of the dynamic and interesting group of classmates they will meet.
FranckLitzlerR1 -> CarrieHi Joanne! I had the pleasure of being invited for an interview here in Singapore two weeks ago. However, I noticed that my online application status did not change to any "interview completed" status, but merely still show "interview scheduled". Is it supposed to be so, or should I remind my interviewer to give her feedback? Thanks a lot, Franck R1 applicant
Carrie -> FranckLitzlerR1Hi Franck. Your status may not change until the final decision is rendered. If there is an issue with your interview report, we will contact the interviewer directly.
Kanad -> LauraWhat courses are generally selected by candidates having management consultancy as their academic focus?
Laura -> KanadThere are a few classes I have taken that I think will be helpful in a consulting position and that others have taken as well. To prepare for case interviews my first year, I took competitive strategy and marketing strategy. To prepare for some of the modeling work I will likely be doing once I start working, I have taken Managerial Decison Modeling and Financial Statement Analysis. The nice thing is that there are many many classes that you can choose from to help your career in consulting. Some classmates choose to focus on strategy classes such as Strategy and Structure, Strategy Development, Business Policy and others. Some classmates choose to focus on hands on classes such as the ones I've mentioned as well as classes such as data driven marketing, cases in financial management, taxes strategy and others. I know this wasn't a specific answer, but the bottom line is that there are many different directions you can go in to support a consulting career.
Saad -> CarrieDoes applying in round 1 vs. round 2 impact chances of admission or financial assistance.? If I am able to pay full for my first year, can I still apply or financial aid in the second year? If so, should I enter seeking financial aid in the application?
Carrie -> SaadHi Saad. We offer scholarship and fellowship opportunities in Rounds 1 and 2, and loan opportunities are available to applicants in all rounds.
Tina_Hung -> KristenThe courses and student groups are so exciting. Could you describe a day at Chicago Booth?
Kristen -> Tina_HungTechnically, there is no typical day at Booth! But I'll go ahead and talk about my Thursdays. Around 8AM I get to school to finish up some of my homework in the Quiet Study Room (it has a fireplace so it is nice and cozy!). Around 10:30AM, I take a break from working and hang out in the Winter Garden and socialize with friends. At noon, I head downstairs to one of the conference rooms to meet with my other Corporate Finance Co-Chairs and discuss the agenda for the week. At 1:25, I head to my afternoon class. Afternoons and evenings are spent either grabbing dinner with friends, studying, or working in study groups.
Rodrigo_F -> AliciaHello, I applied for R1 and I am just waiting for the final decision! I am curious about how the class bidding system limits the advantage of the flexible curriculum?
Alicia -> Rodrigo_FBidding actually allows more flexibility, I think. It allows students to determine how much they want a course and decide for themselves what is most valuable. I have obtained every course I wanted so far, and still have points saved up to get the classes I want for the spring! Good luck with your application!
YU-TING -> AllisonHi, my name is Yu-Ting Hung. I'm applying to the 2012 program. I am attracted by the course and student groups at Chicago Booth. I'm curious that how you allot your time? Could you describe a day in Chicago Booth? thanks.
Allison -> YU-TINGHi Yu-Ting! Great question - there are so many different opportunities here at Booth that it sometimes feels a bit like there's not enough time in the day to do everything you want to do! I think everyone here has to find a balance amongst classes, students groups, homework, socializing, and everything else you want to do with your time. For me, my days are pretty busy - I usually have class in the morning from 8:30 to 11:30, and then have lunch here on campus with friends. In the afternoon, I'll meet with study groups, do homework, meet with professors, and socialize with friends in the Wintergarden while I'm on campus. At night, some study groups meet, and you'll spend time recruiting and getting to know different firms then, as we'll.
Disha -> JoanneAs a young applicant, will my age prove to be a road block for admission? I am much younger than your average class demo.
Joanne -> DishaHi Disha! As mentioned earlier in the chat, we believe that each student should apply when they are ready, and we have no minimums for the number of years of work experience one should have, or what age they are. It's up to you to decide why now is the right time to pursue the MBA, and make that case within the context of your application.
amit -> Carriei think i suffer from a profile bias. I am a male, Indian with an engineering background and with some management experience. Is there such a thing? What suggestions do you have on how to differentiate my application?
Carrie -> amitHi Amit. We receive applications from candidates with very similar profiles, but each applicant has a different story and will bring different aspects to the Booth community. Focus on what is important to you, your path and plan, and what you are passionate about and you will be on the right track!
Kota -> Yesim(To the second year students) please let me know about your experiences of internship. what classes or any other experiences in Booth were useful in your internship in a certain area?
Yesim -> KotaHi Kota! I interned at McKinsey & Co. over the summer in a management consulting role. I think the two Chicago Booth factors that were most helpful to me during my internship were: my Leadership and Development (LEAD) experience and the foundation finance, accounting and operations classes I took during my first year. I specifically wanted to mention LEAD as it helped me really work on self-awareness and hone my executive presence, all factors which were extremely helpful to me as I found myself presenting in front of a client the very first day I joined a new engagement:-)
sundeep -> AllisonHi, do you have cross registration courses outside of Booth?
Allison -> sundeepYes, you can take up to 6 classes outside of Booth during your 2 years here.
Julie0824 -> JoanneHi, I'm thinking of applying for the 2nd round this year. The Booth wesite specifies that it would be preferrable for early applicants to have a competitive GPA (3.3 or higher on 4.0 scale). If my GPA is below the 3.3 criteria, would it mean that I have a low chance of getting admitted?
Joanne -> Julie0824Hi Julie. Regardless of where someone is in her career, the GPA is one of many factors that we use to evaluate an application. We look at the application holistically, so the GPA in itself will not decrease--or increase!--any individual's chances of being admitted to Booth.
gsaraf -> AliciaI know Booth students live in the loop. Do a lot of students have/need a car ?
Alicia -> gsarafYou do not need a car, especially if you live in the loop. The metra is an easy system for getting to campus, and there are plenty of stores in the area. If you live off campus, you'll want to look into public transportation options and then decide what makes the most sense for you. I live in Old Town so I drive, but many of my friends live in the loop and do not have cars.
HD -> LauraDo all students find internship with the school's recruiting system or some find their own?
Laura -> HDIt is definitely a mix of both. There are many many companies that recruit on campus for consulting, marketing, banking, and other career paths. Many students find internships through these opportunities (myself included!), but there are also quite a few opportunities off-campus as well. The Career Services department can help you determine which career is best for you and then how to look for a job, whether on or off campus. The alumni network is incredibly supportive in helping Booth students find internships so you always have support.
sundeep -> KristenHi, could you tell me if booth students follow grade non-disclosure during recreuitments?
Kristen -> sundeepYes they do! Specifically for first years, students do not disclose grades or whether they made Dean's List for the quarter.
YU-TING -> Bethcan you describe a dy in Chicago Booth?
Beth -> YU-TINGEveryday is different at Booth. I have class three days a week but I am always at the Harper Center, either to meet with a study group, for a student group meeting, or for recruiting events. After school, I usually meet classmates for studying at Gleacher or just to hang out downtown.
Moderator -> EveryoneThe chat has now ended. Thank you for participating and learning more about life at Chicago Booth!
Joanne -> EveryoneThanks to everyone for participating in today's chat! We had some great questions and I hope you found our time together helpful.
Alicia -> EveryoneIt was great chatting with everyone today, I hope you learned more about Booth! Best of luck with your business school application process!
Laura -> EveryoneThanks so much for all of the great questions!! It was really nice to chat with many of you. Best of luck!
Yesim -> EveryoneThank you everyone! It was great chatting with you, and I hope we were able to shed more light into life at Chicago Booth. Wish you the best of luck in your MBA adventures!
Kristen -> EveryoneThanks for joining the chat! Hope you found it helpful!
Beth -> EveryoneThanks everyone. It was great chatting with you today!
Allison -> EveryoneThanks so much for being a part of the chat today - I hope we were able to answer many of your questions, and hopefully give you a sense of what life at Booth is like!
Carrie -> EveryoneThanks for joining our chat! Hope we answered all of your questions, and best of luck in the application process!