Can you introduce yourself please?
Hi! My name is Shilpa Shenoy and I work for Cisco Systems in the supply chain operations division. I graduated with an engineering degree in 2015 and have been working with Cisco for the past three years. I gave the GRE twice actually, once in October 2017 and the second time in November 2017.
What made you think of taking up the GRE?
At Cisco, I’m part of the supplier chain operations division and I manage the daily operations for the software that Cisco delivers. I have a vendor management team and I lead the level 1 and level 2 teams that look after the software delivery to make our customer experience hassle-free. This became a catalyst for me to apply and do my masters and I just finished my application processes and I’m back to working now.
How did you balance your work and GRE course?
So, the entire process of giving the GRE, filling out the applications – I think takes a considerable amount of time and we need to make sure that we devote that time for this application process. My schedule at work was quite busy where in I used to be at work until 6 and then I come back home and have conference calls and meetings in the night but I realized I have to make a few compromises to get what I eventually wanted. So, I made a few changes in my daily schedule. The first two months, studying for GRE itself required a considerable amount of time every day. So, I worked around my meetings and changed my work schedule so that I would devote at least three hours every day for GRE.
How did CrackVerbal help you?
Another aspect I can think of which I had to change around would be when I signed up for CrackVerbal I think finding the suitable option for me I had only a month between my first and the second attempt. During that month is when CrackVerbal helped me. There were a lot of options like classes, personal tutoring and so on, I think finding the right one that suited my schedule would work and what I was looking for because attending classes everyday between 2-5 is not a feasible option for me. So, personal tutoring kind of helped there.
How did you know about CrackVerbal?
I heard about CrackVerbal from a friend of mine who I work with. She was also in a similar situation. She had a lot more time, so she went for the classes and I decided to choose personal tutoring and what I liked about CrackVerbal, especially with the personal tutoring, was that they were extremely flexible with what I wanted and they catered it to my needs. Aditya, who was my maths tutor, was also like my academic advisor as well. So, he managed my English and maths sessions in spite of being my maths tutor. I like it quite a bit. Another aspect that helped me prepare well for my GRE was that the tutors made sure they prepared me with harder, GMAT level questions, so that when I’m actually appearing for the GRE exam, I would find the GRE level a little easier in the exam.
Can you tell us about your experience in the application process?
The GRE is your first step to your application, but I think doesn’t end there. Even after the GRE is done, I spent about a month, writing my statement of purpose. Depending on the college the essays vary. I wrote two essays, three essays… and it went on for quite some time. I think I was writing essays for two months. Getting the letter of recommendation from work or college, all that took some time and after two months I was glad to be done with the entire application process.
What advice would you like to give for the aspirants?
One advice I would give is that I think there is a lot of application materials and training materials, a lot of advice that people give out – it can get a little overwhelming. So, you need to decide what works best for you, because everyone is different, right? For example, I realized that personal tutoring and in-person classes worked best for me, so, although a lot of people said, “online classes are good, you should be able to do it,” I gave that a shot, but I realized that personal tutoring and in person classes works best for me. So, I decided to go with my instinct. That’s how I succeeded.