Stanford or Ivy MBA: How can I boost my profile?

By Maxine Seya

I’m a MBA aspirant. It has been my dream to study at Stanford or an Ivy League. In undergrad, my grades weren’t that great but I have some good participation in extracurricular activities. It’s been a year and I’m working as a sales engineer in a reputed multinational corporation. How can I work on my profile so that I land up in an Ivy League college by next year?

– Sonal, a sales engineer from India

The good news is that U.S. universities are eager to recruit more students. Their enrollment is falling fast, thanks to Covid-19, a dwindling population of undergrad and grad-aged students, as well as an overall reluctance to take out student loans in a job market whose wages haven’t caught up to inflation.

If there’s any time for a foreign student to apply for a U.S. MBA program, now’s the time, especially if you demonstrate ability to pay tuition in full.

Selective MBA programs like Stanford’s want to see your leadership. You talk about being a participant in extracurricular activities. Unfortunately, just being a participant, club member, or one of 500 employees at a reputable company won’t cut it.

Not to say it’s a bad thing, but American business culture tends to bow down to extroverted leaders and keep introverted followers on the sidelines.

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Maxine Seya
Maxine Seya is a former investigative journalist, college consultant, and admissions interviewer. She studied at Peking University (Beijing, China) and Université Paul-Valéry (Montpellier, France) and investigated for CNN and Huffington Post before graduating from Northwestern University. She founded SocratesPost to share the human stories behind the admission gates and offer parents clarity as they help their teens with college.