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April 20, 2013

Visits to Booth and Kellogg and some thoughts on learning about MBA programs

I know my blog has been quiet since April 2nd.  For spring vacation, I went to Chicago, where I froze most of the time in very un-spring-like conditions.  My parents and brother live there, so it was time to spend some quality time with the family. In addition, I visited both Booth and Kellogg. Both visits were very productive as it was a chance to meet with admissions at Booth and talk with some of my former clients who are attending Booth and Kellogg.

I had a great opportunity to have a private meeting with a couple of admissions officers at Booth, who were kind enough to take time out of their schedules to meet with me.  It was a frank and off the record meeting, so I will not directly be writing about it.

I tried to also arrange such a meeting at Kellogg, but my prior contact in the admissions office is no longer there and I could not even get a reply to my request for meeting. Oh well, I guess I’ll have to try again when I am back in Chicago.

Still I visited Kellogg to see it again after not having done so for about six years.  As everyone who has been there knows, the place is too small and a new campus will surely be welcome.  According to the Northwestern University website, construction is supposed to start this summer and be completed by 2016.

The main purpose of my visit was to meet with a couple of my former clients who are first year students there.  They explained how their first year had gone. I was happy to learn that both had excellent internships for the summer.   I hoping to have interviews up with both of them later this year.

I met with first and second year students at Booth.  What was particularly interesting for me was the very different perspectives my former clients had on Booth, something which again reinforces my belief that especially in a program as flexible as Booth, students experiences will really vary greatly.   Differences in perspective also reminded me of why  it is so important that applicants to MBA programs make their own determination about a school and don’t just take any single one perspective on it.   Visiting for yourself and talking to multiple students and/or alumni is really the best way to determine whether you really fit.

Applicants, including the many I have been talking with for initial consultations the last couple of months, often ask me what to do in the spring.  My advice is always to visit schools if you have not done so. Going to them while they are still in session is best.  If you are planning on making round one applications, waiting to visit till the fall can be too late.  Best to do it now and fully account for your visit in your essays.

-Adam Markus
I am a graduate admissions consultant who works with clients worldwide. If you would like to arrange an initial consultation, please complete my intake form. Please don't email me any essays, other admissions consultant's intake forms, your life story, or any long email asking for a written profile assessment. The only profiles I assess are those with people who I offer initial consultations to. Please note that initial consultations are not offered when I have reached full capacity or when I determine that I am not a good fit with an applicant.
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