First Attempt: No
Could you tell us about your profile?
I graduated in B.E. computer science in 2007 from Visvesvaraya University of Technology. I started my career with NIIT Technologies where I worked for 3 years and later I switched to L&T Infotech. I went on to work with Samsung Electronics in South Korea for 13 months and have worked with Samsung Research India, Bangalore ever since. So, in total, I have close to 7 years of work experience.
Why MBA after 7 years of work experience?
The challenging and dynamic work environment at Samsung Electronics motivated me to start thinking of an MBA. I was interested in profiles like Product Management and Marketing and I began to interact with people from these fields. I realized that an MBA clubbed with my work experience would help me excel in this area.
Why did you choose to study abroad rather than in India?
Global exposure is the main reason behind my choice. Also, my company (Samsung) has a dominant market in the USA and in Korea. So an MBA abroad would give me a better understanding of these global markets.
How did you go about with GMAT Prep?
To be honest I had no clue what the GMAT exam tested you on. So, I started my research right from scratch and understood the different concepts tested on the exam. I found the Verbal section challenging as I am predominantly from a technical background and lacked the presentation skills.
I heard about CrackVerbal on the Pagalguy forum. The clear and constant communication about CrackVerbal’s awesome work on the forum helped me decide on signing up for a class. I attended a demo class and was amazed! Soon after the class I took up my diagnostics test and saw that I had problems with SC and CR. Thanks to CrackVerbal’s classes and support, I was able to focus and improve in these areas
Tips for GMAT prep
I took the GMAT twice. In my first attempt, I scored a 600. I was quite disappointed and I am sure something went totally wrong that day. Either it was my nervousness or some technical issues due to which my test was delayed and I was literally racing against time to complete my test.
During my second attempt, I referred only to the books and materials given by CrackVerbal. These materials were so helpful and it tested students on concepts and scenarios similar to the actual GMAT. Hence I did not see the need to refer to other articles.
My long working hours did not allow much room for GMAT prep in the evening. So, I prioritized my GMAT prep over my morning exercise schedule and followed it religiously! Also, completing the homework helps a lot in refreshing the concepts. Believe it or not, homework is good!
Eventually, I also joined quant classes with CrackVerbal and Akshay’s tips helped me understand the concepts better. I spent almost 3 months preparing for the GMAT and I scored a 690 in my second attempt.
Though the score was not high, I decided to go ahead with my admissions as I had only 10-15 days left to make it to Round 2 deadlines! Also, a 90 point jump from my first attempt on the GMAT was a great motivation to apply.
Thanks to CrackVerbal, I started to enjoy Verbal over Quant!
Which schools did you apply to and how did you go along the application process?
I applied mostly to mid-tier schools in the US. The adMission MBA workshop by CrackVerbal was very insightful and gave some direction to my application process. I availed CrackVerbal’s application services. Expert advice on my essays and also the mock interview prep with Jaideep helped me produce great essays for my MBA applications.
When it came to collecting recommendations, the admissions consultant at CrackVerbal advised that I take them from people who I know personally rather than choosing the high-level managers. All these inputs helped me transform my application for the B-schools.
How was your Interview experience?
I was interviewed by two schools. The interview with Foster Business School went pretty well but unfortunately, I did not get selected. I had my second interview with University of Maryland- Smith School of Business. This interview was particularly interesting as I spoke about my hobby of cooking and the global diversity I was exposed to at work. I had a cross-country exposure in Korea and USA. These two were the main highlights of my interview which helped me bag my MBA admit to Smith School of Business.
One tip that I would like to share is that in your B-School interview, highlight aspects of your personal interests along with professional experience. This helps the B-school have an idea of your overall personality.
Did you receive any scholarship?
Yes! I got a 20k USD scholarship for my first year. Based on my academic performance the offer of an additional 20k USD will be extended for my second year as well.
Any words of wisdom that you would like to share?
To all my friends out there, if you are working and are preparing for the GMAT, Please dedicate your time to it! Practice is the key. It is a marathon, DON’T GIVE UP half way!