Executive MBA

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Live Chat with Executive MBA Admissions

Questions about your essays, recommendation letters or the GMAT? Get answers to these questions and more from our Associate Dean and Admission Directors.

Thursday, January 3, 2013 - Noon CST

From -> To Message
Moderator -> Everyone Hello everyone! Thank you for joining us today. Our chat will begin promptly at 12:00 p.m. CDT. Feel free to begin submitting your questions now so we can start providing answers at noon.
Moderator -> Everyone Hello everyone. Welcome to our live chat! Thank you for joining us today. We are eager to answer all your questions, so please submit them now.
Patty -> Everyone Hello, everyone, thanks for joining us today and getting 2013 off to a great start!
Patricia -> Everyone Hello -- thank you for joining us today.
Erika -> Everyone Hello Everyone and Happy 2013! I look forward to answering your questions today.
Toby -> Everyone Happy New Year everyone! We look forward to answering your questions today.
Maria_Ines -> Patty Hello-will you have any in person session in Seattle area?
Patty -> Maria_Ines Hi Maria. We don;t have any upcoming "live" sessions scheduled in the Seattle area. However, we offer many opportunities for virtual events (like this one). In addition, we can introduce you to an alumnus or current student in your area. Finally, we welcome class visitors and have a nice selection of classes for you to visit in the coming months. Details can be found here:http://www.chicagobooth.edu/programs/exec-mba/admissions/visit/chicago
Maria_Ines -> Erika Will I be required to spend time on the other campuses? the answer is yes... are the cost to travel to London and Singapore part of the tuition?
Erika -> Maria_Ines Hello Maria. You are correct that during the program you will be travelling to London and Singapore for a class week. The tuition covers your hotel stays in the cities along with breakfast each morning and some meals on campus. However; the flights are for you to book/purchase. Also you will have your accommodation covered during Kick-off week and Electives week in Chicago so you can stay at the same hotel as the students from Singapore and London.
Bilal -> Toby I am planning to apply from Houston..Do you have people commuting from Texas or as far as Texas and what has thier experince been in terms of the logistics of commuting and coping with it. Thanks
Toby -> Bilal Hi Bilal - More than half of our students are commuting in from outside the Chicagoland area. Most from California, Texas and NewEngland. I think the best thing to do would be to connect you with a current student or recent alum from your area and you can learn from them first hand how they managed the specifics of the travel. Send me an email at toby.cortelyou@chicagobooth.edu and I'm happy to make a connection.
NikosF -> Patricia What do admissions look for in references?
Patricia -> NikosF Hi NikosF: We look for consistency in the messages in your reference letters. Are they able to speak about your potential, leadership ability, achievement?
Maria_Ines -> Patty I didn't take the GMat test; is this a requirement to apply for this EMBA?
Patty -> Maria_Ines Hi Maria. The GMAT is a requirement for admission. However, based on your academic and professional background, you may be eligible for a GMAT waiver. Details on the waiver can be found in our on-line application.
jglenney -> Toby What are the most important things you look for when reviewing candidates for the MBA program? Are there any particular certifications or types of experience that are considered more valuable?
Toby -> jglenney Hi jglenney - no certifications really stand out over any others. When reviewing candidates I first try to determine if they will be able to manage the academic rigor of the program, next I want to make sure that their goals in coming here are realistic given the experience we provide and finally and maybe most importantly I want to figure out how the applicant will add value to the experiences of their classmates - meaning what is it that the other 89 people in the room will come to you for. If you have strong answers to these questions then we want you in the class.
Maria_Ines -> Patty Thank you Patty, I'd like to talk with alumnus and current students in my area. Can you please send me their contact information?
Patty -> Maria_Ines Sure, Maria. You can send your request to our main email address and Erika will follow up with you -- xp@chicagobooth.edu -- We first ask the alumnus if he/she is willing to contact you, so please include your preferred contact information in the email to us.
AD -> Erika What's the general age group for executive MBA? How much industry experience do they have in general?
Erika -> AD Hello AD – The average age for the students is mid to late 30’s. Our average incoming student has 13 -15 years of professional work experience.
NikosF -> Toby What's the right balance in essays between showing off your capabilities and coming across as a bit arrogant or obnoxious? It seems hard to self-promote without seeming a bit over the top.
Toby -> NikosF Hi NikosF - I like this question. I think there is a fine line between cocky and confident, that said it is pretty subjective depending on the reader. So the best I can answer is "be yourself" - I would add though that the application is NOT a time to be overly humble... if you don't tell us how great you are then we aren't going to know.
BA -> Patricia Circling back on Bilal's question, where do most students stay when traveling from outside Chicago? Does Booth have block rates at hotels, on campus dorms, etc?
Patricia -> BA Hi BA: Most of our students stay in hotels near the Gleacher Center. There is a hotel program that we provide for our students. You can opt into it each quarter. So, you paid the fee up front and your room is available for you each class weekend.
amray -> Patricia Do you have candidates with a healthcare background in the program
Patricia -> amray Hi Amray: Yes, we get candidates with a healthcare background applying to the program. We also have a number of current students in the healthcare industry.
Tom -> Patty I hold a PhD in biomedical engineering, how important is the GMAT for the Evening or EMBA program?
Patty -> Tom Hi Tom. Our Evening MBA program requires the GMAT with no waivers possible. Executive MBA has a waiver process. A waiver will depend upon your academic and professional background. Details can be found in our online application. We use the GMAT as one means of determining your ability to handle the rigorous academics in our MBA program.
Alex_A -> Toby I have been discussing an MBA with my organization heads for a while and am fully committed to earning one by 2015. My prior academic history is probably not as strong as most your candidates and I have not taken my GMATs yet. Am I still eligible? I am interested in the executive program as I am an owner and deal with our executive team and other business owners
Toby -> Alex_A Hi Alex - yes you are eligible. You should plan to take the GMAT though, especially if you are not comfortable with your prior academic history. Look back to an answer I provided earlier about how we evaluate applications - we need to be sure you will be able to manage the academic rigor of the program. That said your experiences sound like they could be quite valuable to the rest of the class.
Maria_Ines -> Erika Thank you Erika-where can I find a full schedule of classes and when will I need to spend the time at campus?
Erika -> Maria_Ines Maria- The schedule has not yet been released for next year’s incoming class. It should be released later this month. You can find the schedule for the most recent class online on our website under the academics tab – program timeline – scroll to the bottom of the page. There will be changes for 2013, but it will give you some understanding how it runs.
Maria_Ines -> Toby do you have students from Microsoft this year?
Toby -> Maria_Ines Hi Maria - Yes we currently have 1 student from Microsoft and a handful of recent alums as well. I'm happy to make introductions if you like, email me at toby.cortelyou@chicagobooth.edu
charles -> Patty happy new years all, as to Toby's last comment regarding intramural group contributions, how large a health care industry presence does the program have and is there a physician presence?
Patty -> charles Hi Charles. We have a "healthy" health care presence in the cohort including several physicians. About 10% of the class is categorized in this way which includes physicians, other health care providers and those in the pharma and biopharm industries.
Tom -> Toby I am part of a startup company, who should write the letter of recommendations as I am the CEO/President, other board members?
Toby -> Tom Thanks Tom - common question. Other board members would be fine, partners, clients etc. Anyone that can speak to your professional accomplishments and abilities as they pertain to the Executive MBA Program.
AD -> Erika How important is GMAT? and what's the average score of candidates selected for EMBA?
Erika -> AD AD- GMAT scores provide the admissions committee with useful information about an applicant's ability to succeed in an academically rigorous program. There is no minimum score required. In making an admissions decision, we look at all aspects of a candidate's background, knowledge, and experience as demonstrated in the application process.
Rena_Poulos -> Toby Do you reccommend submitting the application without the GMAT score? Or should I wait until I have my score?
Toby -> Rena_Poulos Hi Rena - A GMAT score is required for your application to be considered for admission unless you have received a GMAT Waiver. Please review the "GMAT Score" section of the application to learn more about the waiver process.
NikosF -> Patricia What can I tell my employer about how much of my time and attention will be taken over by this programme - since I would be working full time?
Patricia -> NikosF Hi AD: Both programs are part time for working professionals. The difference is the student profile, and the class format. Executive profile: average age 37, 12 years + professional work experience. Evening/Weekend profile: 29 years, 6 years experience. The Executive program has a pre-set general management curriculum. E/W has more flexible curriculum.
Ravi -> Erika If someone scores a little under 600 on GMAT,, would you consider to retake the exam before applying?
Erika -> Ravi Hi Ravi - The GMAT score is just one piece of information used to assess a candidate's suitability for the Chicago Booth Executive MBA Program. We also consider previous education, previous management experience, leadership potential, letters of recommendation, and the results of a personal interview to decide if a candidate is the right fit for the program. If you score lower than you would have liked to, taking the test again can be a way to strengthen your application.
amray -> Patty I know you answered a GMAT question earlier, but in general what are the major criteria for obtaining a GMAT waiver. Also could you give some idea about typical GMAT scores in the EMBA class
Patty -> amray Hi Amray. For a GMAT waiver, we look for a strong academic background in quantitative courses as well as the application of that knowledge to your professional life.We want to make sure those we grant waivers have a strong background in math and analytics as well as a good handle on comprehension and reasoning (as measured in the GMAT). Typical scores are in the 600s.
TimD -> Patricia Is there an opportunity to provide supplemental information for the application (such as an example of a work product to add more context), or is that level of detail best saved for the interviews, if called?
Patricia -> TimD Hi TimD: The more information you provide us, the better understanding of your career direction/goals. You can provide this in your essays, and during the interview.
Gokyada -> Toby If one has scored little under 600 on GMAT, would you recommend to retake the exam before applying?
Toby -> Gokyada Hi Gokyada - The GMAT is just one part of a very large application process - that said you certainly want to put your best foot forward in all areas. Without seeing the rest of your application I can't give a perfect answer for you but all things being equal a better GMAT score can only improve your chances of admission.
Michael -> Toby I finished 1yr business school several years ago and I also got a masters in engineering management technology in 2008, now I am thinking about getting an MBA. Do you think I could qualify for the GMAT waiver?
Toby -> Michael Hi Michael - Those are all good points to bring up when applying for the waiver. We take a number of things into consideration when making waiver decision but the great thing is that they are decided weekly - my advice is to apply for the waiver and find out as soon as possible if we officially want you to take the GMAT.
temz -> Erika hello, i have an undergraduate degree from a UK university, Is it possible to do an MBA programme without been a professional or working class?
Erika -> temz Hi Temz, We have many students who have received their undergraduate degrees from institutions outside of the USA. In regards to your question about being a professional or working class… I am slightly confused what you are asking. Students in the EMBA program are working professionals who bring their experience into the classroom.
AD -> Toby Are most of the candidates in a position where they lead businesses or large teams? Meaning do you have to be a proven leader before your EMBA?
Toby -> AD Hi AD - our student body is VERY diverse in terms of leadership experience as well as industry and functional experience. I would say that you don't need to be a proven leader but you have to display the capacity to lead.
Rob -> Patricia Do you need the official GMAT score before you apply or will taking the test before and providing the unofficial documentation be sufficient until you get the official scores?
Patricia -> Rob Rob: We do not need your official score at the time you apply. However, your application need to be complete, including the official score before it's reviewed.
NikosF -> Patty What would you descibe Booth's key point of differentiation vs other EMBA programs?
Patty -> NikosF Hi Nikos. By far, our key differentiator is the way we integrate students and the learning experience between our 3 campuses in Chicago, London and Singapore. Our campuses are all Chicago Booth campuses and faculty are all Booth faculty - we do not partner with other institutions. This ensures that our students receive a consistent Chicago Booth experience. Our EMBA students spend 1/3 of the program in a classroom with students from all over the world - no other top business school EMBA program matches that level of cultural diversity.
Andrey -> Toby If you have a candidate that applied to the EMBA program and you believe they are a better fit for the evening or weekend program, do you accept them to the more appropriate program or reject the candidate and suggest they start the application process over?
Toby -> Andrey Hi Andrey - hopefully if you are deciding between the two programs you have identified the most important differences in the programs and are committed to attending one program and not the other. We are happy to have a discussion with you before you apply about which program would be best for you.
Rena_Poulos -> Erika The application requires 3 letters of recommendation will submitting additional letters count against an applicant?
Erika -> Rena_Poulos Hi Rena, We require three letters of recommendation as we believe it is a sufficient number to give us the information we need about you. However; if you feel additional letters within reason can add value to your application we will accept them.
Bilal -> Patricia Is Letter of Support a Must to be obtained from the current employer? and what is it that the school is wanting my employer to say? the reason I ask is my employer might say as long as I take unpaid leave (or some similar arrangement the company doesnt care) So can I apply without a Letter or Support. Or join the program without getting one?
Patricia -> Bilal Hi Bilal: A letter of support is required AFTER admission to the program. You can certainly apply without submitting the letter. I will be happy to provide you with our "sample" letters of support. Simply contact me offline at patricia.coffey@chicagobooth.edu
Moderator -> Everyone We are almost half way through the chat and have had great questions so far. Please continue to submit your questions! We will try to answer all of them today.
Sreekanth -> Patty After 12 years of corporate life, I started my own company in 2012. While my previous supervisors are happy to give recommendations, is there anything else I am expected to do in relation to recommendations and 'Employee Sponsorship Letter' ?
Patty -> Sreekanth Hi Sreekanth. Please make it clear in your application that you own and operate your own company. If you are admitted to the program, we ask that you state this in our Company Support Letter -- nothing more is required.
Rena_Poulos -> Toby Toby, let me clarify, I wanted to know if I have not taken the GMAT but I have all other required documentation complete for submission. Is it ok to submit that info and provide my GMAT at a later time or should it all be submitted together.
Toby -> Rena_Poulos Rena - thanks for the clarification - actually the application system will not allow you to Submit the application without a GMAT score or a GMAT waiver. So the answer is no - we need to receive all of your material together.
Dan_Ahern -> Toby Can you give some detail about the interview process (e.g. who the interviewers are, types of questions, relative weighting compared to other application parts)?
Toby -> Dan_Ahern Hi Dan - You will interview with either Patty, Patricia, me or and alum of the program - most likely an alum. It is mostly a behavioral interview, there are no tricks, we aren't going to try to stump you or anything. The interview is an extension of the rest of the application. No piece of the application is given any greater weight than any other. All interviews do take place at Gleacher Center in Chicago and we try to couple them with a class visit if you haven't already had one.
Michael -> Patty What is the difference between and EMBA and the regular MBA degree in terms of recognition?
Patty -> Michael Hi Michael. The degree that you earn in ALL of our programs is the MBA degree. The difference between programs is reflected in the format (part-time or full-time) and the student profile (work experience, career goals, etc.), but the degree is identical.
Bilal -> Toby Hi Toby, coming back to the question Rena_Poulos had and your clarification, My GMAT is on the 9th Feb. So it means that I cannot apply for the 4-feb deadline? or can I apply for an extension to this date?
Toby -> Bilal Bilal - we review applications in the order they are received so even if you miss the deadline by a few days we will evaluate your application in a timely manner. Just submit once you have everything complete and you will get a decision quickly.
hb -> Patricia 1. Do you have any alumni from the EMBA program who have made any career changes - within or outside the industry?
Patricia -> hb HI hb: Yes, there are alumni from the program who have made career changes either within or outside of their industries. Send me an email offline and I'll be happy to connect you with someone to offer some additional insight. patricia.coffey@chicagobooth.edu
Ramm -> Erika I am a person with 20 years of work experience after my bachelor of Engineering in 1992. Would you recommend a full time MBA program or EMBA??
Erika -> Ramm Hi Ramm, I would recommend if you have the time to come visit us and visit a class if possible and do the same for the full-time program. As Patty just answered the student profiles and format differ between us and the full-time program.
NikosF -> Toby Does Booth follow a rolling admissions process? If I applied in the next few weeks, how soon before I could expect a response?
Toby -> NikosF NikosF - yes, we are on rolling admissions. Once you submit your application you find out within a few days if you are invited to interview. Once the interview is complete an official application decision usually takes 4-6 weeks.
Shashank -> Patty How does the program structure help create the networking opportunities within the class and with students from other campuses?
Patty -> Shashank Hi Shashank. The program stucture is cohorted. This means that students spend the majority of their program in the same classroom with the same group of students progressing through the same courses together. This naturally leads to bonding among the students. Student spend 1/3 of the program in a classroom with students from the other campuses. The same applies in that scenario - you are working closely together in a classroom and in smaller study groups. Your get to know your colleagues, their work backgrounds and work styles extremely well. These networking opportunities are what differentiates the experience for EMBA students and what many candidates seek when they are looking for a business school at mid-career. Our admissions process is built around making sure that we provide a very diverse class so that everyone can take advantage of the knowledge and experience of their classmates.
Michael -> Toby I was registered for a 2 yrs mba program, but finished 1 yr and earned an executive business certificate in economics. would this be an important fact to state when applying for the GMAT waiver?
Toby -> Michael Michael - I would encourage you to submit this information along with a more detailed description of what exactly you completed and how you were graded.
AD -> Erika what is the average time spent on classes, self-study per week?
Erika -> AD AD- The amount of time students spend on projects depends on their knowledge of the subject matter. I have heard everything from 5-20 hours per week spent studying outside of the classroom.
BA -> Patty What % of accepted applicants apply early, 1st round, 2nd round, and 3rd round...(I understand this may not be disclosed)?
Patty -> BA Hi BA. As might be expected, many of our candidates wait until the final deadline to apply for the program! We admit candidates on a rolling basis which means that we evaluate and accept people as we receive applications. All other things being equal, it is best to apply to the program as early as possible.
hb -> Patricia 2. What kind of career services support does Booth provide for EMBA students
Patricia -> hb hb: We have a full-time dedicated career services team for each of our campuses (Chicago, London and Singapore). Services range from planning a career move, networking and skill development. It's important to know, these services are for a life-time.
TimD -> Erika Do you have an estimated "workload" for the program when off campus, in terms of hours/week. With the understanding that this is very student specific, have you found participants also need to block off time from work in the off-campus weeks?
Erika -> TimD Hi Tim D- I just answered a similar question for AD. I would just add that students find a variety of ways to find the time to study. It does take some juggling – but you have the support of your class through it.
Michael -> Patricia Do you have to be a C-level executive to qualify for the waiver? If you have the work experience as an engineer and project manager with Project management professional certification, could that help you qualify for the waiver?
Patricia -> Michael Michael: You do not need to be a C-level executive to qualify for a waiver. Waivers are granted to those applicants who have a high level of quantitative and analytical skills and the ability to apply these skills to the program.
Maria_Ines -> Patty can you please provide more details about the "concentration program"?
Patty -> Maria_Ines Hi Maria. Our students have the ability to specialize in corporate finance, capital markets, marketing, strategy, entrepreneurship or leadership and management. Students follow a special track during a residential session in Chicago in order to complete these classes.
Ramm -> Toby What are the documents required for applying for GMAT waiver?
Toby -> Ramm Hi Ramm - We ask for a resume, academic transcripts and for the "personal" section of the application to be completed. You can find the details on the application as well.
admccune -> Patricia When is the soonest you would consider an application for the class entering next summer 2014?
Patricia -> admccune Hi admccune: The 2014 application should be available in June. You can apply as soon as it becomes available.
Moderator -> Everyone Our chat will be ending in 15 minutes. Please submit your final questions so we can answer all of them!
NikosF -> Patricia Given all this talk about GMAT - is there any disadvantage to having a GMAT waiver (which I've already been granted)?
Patricia -> NikosF Hi NikosF: There is no disadvantage to having a GMAT waiver. If you've received a waiver, it just means that you were able to demonstrate, based on your experience your ability to be successful in a analytical program of business studies.
Alex_A -> Erika I guess my question is how much of the admissions is based of acedemics /GMAT versus experience and bringing ideas and teamwork to the table
Erika -> Alex_A Hi Alex – The Admissions team weighs all parts of the application. Academics are important so they know you are ready for the materials presented. And your experience lets us know what you can contribute to the classroom and your fellow 89 peers.
Miriam -> Toby What would you say sets Chicago Booth apart from other highly ranked Executive MBA Programs?
Toby -> Miriam Hi Miriam - There are a lot of really great EMBA Programs out there. I think that it is important that you determine the most important factors for you and measure each program using your own set of criteria. That said I think that very few programs have as complete of an international experience as we do, few have the consistently high quality faculty we do, and I think that our student/alumni network is as strong as anyone. These are a couple things I think set us apart.
Vish -> Patty My question is if a person has already achieved something, how does EMBA help him/her? What about people who believe EMBA helps them to achieve something? Is there a scope for them
Patty -> Vish Hi Vish. Students come to our programs for many different reasons and are motivated by many different things. Many come to build their professional networks while earning a degree from a top business school. Many come for the knowledge and the confidence gained during the experience. Many come because they have an interest in starting their own businesses or want to be more marketable in their industries. It's very important that you spend the time thinking about your own motivations for business school. I would also encourage you to talk to students and alumni from our program and from other schools in order to help you decide if the experience is appropriate for you and your career goals. As a student and an alumnus, you have access to our career services team. Part of their charge is to help you manage and grow your career.
Michael -> Patty Do you have any alumni mentor program? What I mean is a program where students are paired with past graduates for mentoring and also networking.
Patty -> Michael Hi Michael. Yes, we have the ability to connect you with alumni from our program. Please contact us at xp@chicagobooth.edu and let us know the type of alumnus with whom you would like to connect (industry, job function, geography, etc.).
nitin -> Toby What is the acceptance rate for EMBA program? What is the mediam GMAT or range of the accepted candidates?
Toby -> nitin Hi Nitin - unfortunately I don't have hard numbers for you here. We don't report acceptance rates partly because they only tell you what you already know... that we are a selective institution.
As for the GMAT score - any number reported isn't truly accurate because we provide a waiver option.
Gokyada -> Erika Is it mandatory that you need to have people reporting to you? People who perform project management and program management do not have any reporting relationships, however they have influence across the levels in organizations.
Erika -> Gokyada Gokyada- It is not mandatory for an applicant to have people reporting to them. . As you said some lines of work do not perhaps function in that way and we have students in a variety of professions some similar to what you mention.
AD -> Toby if selected for EMBA course, how do you accommodate for students who are deputized to another continent say move from US to South America/China? Sabatical leave allwoed?
Toby -> AD Hi AD - We can work with you if you need to step out of the program and continuing at one of our other campuses isn't an option. It all happens on a very individual level. The important thing is as a student to let us know as soon as you think it might be a real scenario.
TimD -> Patty For the entrepreneurship concentration, do students team together for a capstone project through the final quarters? When do we need to declare a particular concentration?
Patty -> TimD Hi Tim. Students can specialize in entrepreneurship by taking a special track of courses in that area during the second summer of the program. In addition, students can participate in the Global New Venture Challenge (GNVC) during their time in the program. The GNVC is a classroom-based course but also has activities outside of the classroom. There is no need to declare anything formally - you simply register for that track of courses.
Bilal -> Erika Is there a pdf (or form ) for the letter of recommendation? I have a couple of people in mind including my supervisor but I want to select one who would make an effort to fill it and do justice to the form. So I would like to look at the form before nominating my refere. The website says Letter are available only electronically.Thanks
Erika -> Bilal Hi Bilal- Good question. If you send me an email at xp@chicagobooth.edu I will send you the information. I do not have a PDF, but I can send you through the questions that they receive electronically.
Andrey -> Toby Chicago is known as a quantitatively oriented school. From your experience with students and alumni does it seem that the EMBA program is more quantitatively rigorous than other top programs?
Toby -> Andrey Hi Andrey - I don't know about more or less rigorous but I know that our program is AS rigorous as we believe it needs to be for you to truly earn an MBA from the University of Chicago. Our approach to business education is based in a formal understanding of timeless business fundamentals. Some of these require a strong quantitative understanding (accounting, statistics) others focus on more subjective areas (strategy, leadership) but all areas teach you to think about business issues differently than ever before.
Moderator -> Everyone Thank you for joining us today. The chat session has now ended. The chat transcript will be posted by January 7th, on the following link: http://www.chicagobooth.edu/programs/exec-mba/admissions/events/online-chats-archive.aspx
Patty -> Everyone Thank you for joining us today. We appreciate your interest in Chicago Booth's Executive MBA Program.
Erika -> Everyone Thank you everyone for the questions!
Patricia -> Everyone Thanks for joining us today. We hope that we were able to answer your questions. Please contact us at XP@chicagobooth.edu for additional information. Have a great day!
Toby -> Everyone Thanks everyone for your time today - be sure to visit out website to learn about other upcoming chats and webinars and please try to find an opportunity to visit us at Gleacher Center!