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Monthly Archives: October 2013

Is this the end?

So attempt two at GMAT happened today. And after deceptively increasing scores in the mock and admittedly a better understanding of the exam, I bombed again. The shock and utter disbelief gave away to despair as I called TH to tell him that I let him down yet again. While in the first round, I refused to accept the message that the mock scores were giving me, for this attempt, my mock scores ranged at least 60-100 points from the last time around. I thought that was a good sign.

So now, is this the end of the MBA road for me? This one exam/score can possibly nullify the rest of my application. I am below the median scores for all schools that I want to apply to. But as I was thinking these justifications out in my head, I also realized, that this is it. These are all the objections that I have/can get for my application.

On the other hand, do I believe that getting a low GMAT score will stop me being who I am or what I do at work? Did not having a GMAT score stop any of the opportunities that I have had so far or will stop me from going out for any in the future? Sure, for that matter, even if I don’t apply, will I stop pursuing and building a profile in shaping strategy for a company? Is everything that I have done in school, college, and work so far, have no value without this GMAT score to confirm it?

To these many questions, my answer was no. GMAT failure doesn’t and hasn’t changed any of these things and likely has little impact on anything except my application and the number of schools that I had originally wanted to apply to. The reason why I want to do an MBA is still the same. The reason why I want to apply to certain schools is also the same. The onus is on me, as it always was, to convince the admissions committees of these schools that I am still the right candidate, with one less data point to support their decision-making process – the GMAT score. A typical candidate would have their college acads+GMAT to quantify her mental chops along with professional and extra curricular aspects. In my case, since my GMAT is now down the drain, I just have one less point than everyone else to make the same case.

I could potentially give this whole thing up with the pathetic GMAT score. But 5-10-15 years down the line, an older, probably wiser me, would definitely question, how I expected anyone else to have faith in my dreams and aspirations, if I didn’t have the conviction enough to follow them through their logical end. From the day I started this journey, I knew that I won’t be an MBA because of my GMAT, but inspite of it. Well now, let me start this journey in earnest with the GMAT behind me.

Some dreams stay with you forever,
drag you around but bring you back to where you were,
Some dreams keep on gettin better,
gotta keep believin’ if you wanna know for sure
plan-b

 

At the end of this, I may not be successful, but I’ll at least know for sure.

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Posted by on October 30, 2013 in Future, MBA

 

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GMAT ennui continues…

I have been with the books. That is to put it mildly with no exaggeration. My days and thoughts have now broken into the following neat pieces

  1. Studying
  2. Thinking of studying and what to study
  3. Thinking of life once I am done studying

My struggles with both Quant and Verbal continue and all past sins of my school days when my cocky self thought I could skate by the theory has come back to bite me (yes, you know where). That said, my quant studies have me feeling amused on some days and tearing my hair out for habits I cannot outgrow, on others. Now, somewhere between 6th grade and 8th grade, my love for math went down from a certain amount X to 0.000X and by the 10th grade it was tending to 0. There were many factors. My teacher sucked and I was able to compensate my dwindling math score by increased interest in other sciences and humanities. Of course, that I could ever, in my wildest dreams, want to be an engineer (like my Dad? No way!) or do an MBA/MS (uh what?!), was a possibility that didn’t come into play.

DoYourMath

But I did know that given the Indian education system, a less than 80% score in Math was equal to flunking. Most people I knew actually considered anything less than 95-99% akin to failing, so 80 was like my safety net to just save face. On the other hand, I knew that CBSE (Board of Education that conducted our exams) had some absurd ways of giving us some points for being a sport and attempting questions in the paper. Some of the things that I remember and which helped me through school were:

  • Writing “hence proved” or “QED” at the end of theorems or LHS = RHS, that you proved got you 0.5
  • Writing the equation and the first line of simplification such as remove parenthesis/apply BODMAS (PEMDAS) rule got you 0.5-1 depending on the question
  • A text explanation of the next step e.g. “when we combine the above, we get” etc. got you 0.5

As I read through my current notes and the few pages where my “100 marks” and “Q51” scoring TH has scribbled on the pad, I can’t help but notice the number of complete sentences that I use to solve (not just explain to myself) math vs the crisp numbers and symbols that show TH’s process.

ch910528

If only this story writing in Quant helped my Verbal scores, life would be perfect eh? 😐

Among other things, less than 3 weeks to go for this part of the process to end. Who’s pumped?! 😀

 
 

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