Dec 1, 2011

Inside NYU Stern's Admissions Office

This post is one in a series of posts trying to decipher what happens once you click that "submit" button in the application portal of the top business schools. As told by the admissions directors themselves! Follow us on twitter and facebook to keep yourself updated with the next set of schools.

What happens once applications are submitted?

Isser Gallogly, Executive director of MBA admissions at NYU Stern - At NYU Stern, we have three admissions deadlines, however, we use a rolling notification process, which makes us unlike some other schools that have round systems. We do provide any initial notification deadlines as to when can applicants expect us to get back to them, but usually that’s the latest possible date and we try to get out our initial notifications as soon as we have them ready. We recognize the fact that this is an anxious process for all the applicants, and we  do not make people wait unnecessarily.

Our admissions process is holistic as well as individualist. Every application gets reviewed by the Admissions Committee and is reviewed more than once, so it’s not just a single individual’s decision. In some cases, the admisisons committee will debate considerably. In every case we try to make sure that every application gets a full and complete review from us and is seen from more than one vantage point.

One aspect that I think is unique about our admissions process has to do with who’s reading and reviewing the applications. In many other schools, students, part-time help or alumni are involved in the admisisons process. But at NYU Stern, all the applications are reviewed by trained admissions professionals who are part of our full-time admissions team. Occasionally we will bring in some help, however, even in such cases these are the people who have been a part of our admissions team.

The second point is that our interview process is quite different than that of most other schools. First of all, the interviews are required for admissions. Second, the interviews are by invitation only. We only conduct interviews if we are serious about the applicants. About 25 - 30 % of our applicants are invited for interviews. This means that we are not going to waste anyone’s time. Almost all of these interviews happen in NewYork City with one of our admissions team members. I always tell applicants that if you are applying to NYU Stern, set aside the time and money to travel to New York City and interview. We take it very seriously.

Unlike many other schools, the interview is not blind and is 30 minutes long. We are not going to waste applicants' time by asking them to tell us again why they want to go to our business school. We’ve already asked that in the application essays. We want applicants to take it to the next level in the interview. At the same time, these admissions interviews are meant to be two way conversations.

Our admissions selectivity is about 14-15%, making us more selective than most other business schools in the world. So, we want to ensure that we are screening candidates not only on paper but in person as well. I think anyone who has done a job interview must have seen some wonderful resumes and then been surprised during the interview that the actual person was somewhat different than what appeared on the paper.

The interview also benefits the applicant. The candidates typically like the opportunity to have 30 minutes speaking directly to a member of the our Admissions Committee. Interview is their chance to present themselves in person. Not only do we want to ensure that these applicants are the right fit for us, we want to make sure we are the right fit for them. When candidates come to visit NYU Stern as part of the interview they can have lunch with a current student, visit a class and also have a tour of the school. All this helps them make an informed decision as to  which school to attend. So our approach to the interview process is unique and a bit different – but we think that this special part of our process really does give us the best possible talent.

Getting back to the application process, applicants have three notification possibilities - the invitation for an interview, the waitlist or denial of admission. After applicants goes through the interview, we typically get back to them within three weeks and usually admit between 50 - 60 % of those who were interviewed.

In terms of how we notify applicants of our final decisions, we do almost all of it with an online status check. This allows candidates to see where they are in our process 24/7. When a candidate's status changes, we also send them an email.

When people are admitted we do try to have the person who conducted their interview give them a congratulatory call. Those are some special calls to make. Every once in a while, these acceptance calls catch applicants by surprise, but for the most part we find that applicants stay pretty much on top of their online status – they watch that very closely.

BizSchoolPrep Comments:

  • Every application is read. No cutoffs. Seriously, even if you have a 200 GMAT and 0.4 GPA!
  • Applications are read twice, at minimum. Hence, do not get worried thinking one person's perspective (who is in a bad mood) will break your application!
  • Your application will not be read by student members. Only full time adcom memebrs.
  • NOT a blind interview - The interviewer may have read your application so keep in mind that you should not contradict something that you have written in your application.
  • The application reading process may be a little random (although rolling notification) so do not try too hard to find a coorelation between the submitted date to the interview invite date or with that of your friend.
  • Do not submit an incomplete application. Period.

School Stats -

2011-2012 Tuition & Fees: $100,894
School Recommended Two-Year Budget: $165,340

Median GMAT: 720
GMAT Range: 660-760
Average GPA: 3.45

Acceptance Rate: 14%
Full-Time Enrollment: 784
International: 28%
Female: 33%
African American: 11%
Asian American: 23%
Hispanic or Latino American: 9%
Mean Age: 27

Median Base Salary: $100,000
Median Signing Bonus: $30,000
Percentage of MBAs with Job Offers at Graduation: 84%
Percentage of MBAs with Job Offers Three Months Later: 93%
Estimate of Total Pay over a 20-Year Career*: $2,918,748
* as reported by Bloomberg BusinessWeek, 2010
Source: Collected from internet/clearadmit/Poets&Quants

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1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing. This is helpful.