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An MBA at Ross School of Business with 740 on the GMAT

Posted on December 02, 2015
Ross School of Business

In conversation with Sanmeet Singh who scored a 740 on the GMAT and secured an MBA admit to Ross School of Business.


Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

I am an engineering graduate from IIT Rourkee. I graduated in 2009 and ever since then I have shifted 3 different jobs within the last 6 years. Out of these three jobs I had two jobs that were in the financial services industry.
I entered the financial industry with Investment Banking and then moved to Equity Research which was really exciting because it involves evaluation of stocks, creating financial models, projecting earnings of the companies and the best part is writing research reports for investors.
For the last three years I’ve been in the Energy sector, working for a company called CRISIL. So, basically I’m looking to provide energy companies with data and telling them how strong their influence is in the Global Market and how global, economic factors affect them.

Why not IT?

As I had mentioned earlier, I graduated in 2009. Recession was really bad at that time and my company had shifted my joining date to 6 months further. So, in the mean time I managed to secure a job in a financial company. So I continued to stay in the financial sector since then.

What was your motivation behind an MBA?

The desire to work abroad in the long run was my motivation. I felt the amount of money generated in India in comparison to the US is comparatively less. Plus, it’s an outsourcing industry here in India. So, everything I do ends up being used by the client and they generate revenue on their side of the plank.
Eventually it struck me that if I work directly for the client I could make more revenue as well as provide more value. I wanted to provide more value to the company and I couldn’t shift internally to my company’s branch abroad (as in the case of IT companies). So, an MBA is definitely the way to go for me!
Also, the life that it has to offer: two years of meeting new people and gaining exposure would help me improve my soft skills and experience cultural diversity.

What was your GMAT Mantra?

Umm…I’ve taken the GMAT 3 times in the last 3 years. I scored a 710 in my last 2 attempts and I felt I really needed to buck it up because a 710 wasn’t really good enough for my target B- schools. So, I worked really hard and ended up scoring a 740 on the GMAT 🙂
As far as my prep is concerned, it took me around 2 months to prepare since I had already given the GMAT twice. Maths came to me naturally as I was from an engineering background. Verbal was the only task to tackle.
So, according to me it is important to know the fundamentals of the Verbal sections because it is very easy to go astray. You should work on your mistakes more and understand the underlying concepts to this.
SC was the part that I found difficult and so I ensured that I covered the theory of Sentence Correction very well just because I wanted everything to come naturally to me on the day of the exam. As far as CR and RC are concerned, they were more about practice. But, at the end of the day the basic idea is to analyze where you go wrong!

How do you feel CrackVerbal helped?

I availed the OnDemand Course of CrackVerbal. The quality of lectures provided was simply outstanding. The SC module was excellent and helped me improve my weak area. Their lectures provided me with the concepts that I needed to know. CrackVerbal helped me crack the GMAT.

How was your GMAT experience on the day of the exam?

I would say don’t worry too much on the day of the exam. A light breakfast and a cup of coffee would do the trick. In my case, I had an entire flask of coffee that I drank during the break. Also, have a few fruits and go to the washroom to freshen up during the break and leave the rest to God is what I would suggest 🙂

Can you tell us how you went about with your MBA applications? 

This was my second year of applications. Last year I had applied to 5 colleges but did not get a single interview call. I felt I was quite hasty in my application process and did not pay attention to the details. So, this time I took a different route and just worked on one school that I wanted to get into.
This year, I applied to 4 schools -Tuck, Ross, Kenan-Flagler and Wanderwult.  I converted an MBA admit at all schools except Tuck.
Out of those 3 conversions, I chose Ross Business School because I heard that Ross was among the top schools. I knew that applying to the M7 Schools would make no sense because the experience that the people who apply there would be huge in comparison to what I had
When it came to Ross, they had 2 essays. One was, “Your biggest professional achievement and why?” and the second one was “Your biggest personal achievement and why?” My professional achievement was obviously the ones that I had gotten at work.
When it came to my personal achievement I wrote about the time I formed a team of 20 people from work and held an educational campaign for 100 underprivileged children at a day care home.

What made you stand out in Ross?

Although my essays played a big role, what made me stand out was my networking with the School, I connected with the school, made them know I’m applying. I was very actively in touch with the AdComm member who was going to read my applications. I made it a point that he knew me before I even applied to Ross by meeting him and connecting with him over a few email exchanges. Networking is the key is what I would say.

Any Words of Wisdom for our GMAT and MBA aspirants?

There are a few points that I would like to mention, which would be:
1. Don’t take too many tests. Only stick to the official exams!
2. Someone wants to prepare for the GMAT I would say focus on the concepts.
3. When it comes to applications. I would say start early and only fill a few selected forms that you feel you have a good shot at.
4. Networking as I said earlier is the key to any admit. Spend as much as time in networking with the admissions committee before you apply. This will give you an insight about what your profile needs to look like.

5. Essays should have content that describes how you would be a good fit to the class and what value you provide. So, I would say when you write your essays ensure that you work around those guidelines.
Also, it is very important to get in touch with the Alumni before you apply to any school.
Are you inspired by Sanmeet’s story? Leave your comments below!
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