If you are interested in learning more about the MBA and MS programs at the University of Rochester, Simon School and are located in the NYC metro area, here’s your opportunity! Join alumni, students, and staff for an evening of networking and listen to an interview style program with Simon alumnus, Roland Caputo as he […]
The following blog post is written by Albert Chatigny, 2015 MBA Candidate.
A week ago today, top admitted MBA and MS students from all over the world made their way to Rochester, NY for Scholarship Weekend. Some trickled in early to explore the city while others arrived Friday afternoon for the evening kickoff. For most of them, this was an opportunity to meet potential classmates for the first time. Simon offers this valuable opportunity to network with future classmates several months ahead of the first day of classes, all while pursuing an increase in scholarship awards!
The weekend included a case study competition, various panel discussions, networking receptions with alumni, staff and current students, tours of campus and the surrounding communities, among other activities. Scholarship Weekend has engaged prospective students, current students and alumni each year for several years. It has become one of our favorite events; current students look forward to it for months. I was fortunate enough to participate in the event in 2013 as an admitted student and in 2014 and 2015 as a current student.
Students were placed into teams on Friday evening and began working on the case immediately. Teams were given just over 12 hours to deliver their recommendations and presentations started shortly thereafter. Judges for the presentation portion of the event were recent Simon graduates, ranging from the Class of 2007 to 2014. Participants had the opportunity to network with and learn from these successful alumni throughout the weekend, and current students and staff were able to catch up with a few familiar faces.
Once the competition was over, participants were able to relax and enjoy the rest of the scheduled activities, which included a lunch, informal group conversations with the aforementioned alumni and current students, dinner and happy hour. As much as Scholarship Weekend is an opportunity for Simon to learn more about its incoming class, it serves as a platform for those students to learn more about their respective program as well. This has always been my favorite portion of the event because it allows Simon to showcase its programs in a very honest light and to interact in a way that allows incoming students to get a clearer idea of what the next year or two of their lives will look like. Many students have claimed over the years that experiencing Scholarship Weekend is what solidified their decision to enroll.
I have taken time to reflect on this past Scholarship Weekend – especially since it is the last one in which I will participate as a student. I still find it hard to believe how much was accomplished in such a short period of time. From the first scheduled activity Friday afternoon until the last one on Sunday, participants began developing what will undoubtedly be long-lasting relationships with future classmates.
Scholarship Weekend has provided me with experiences that have been both impactful and unforgettable. I have seen three incredibly strong classes of Simon students participate in the event over the last two years, and I can hardly describe those experiences adequately in words. Excitement, challenge, frustration, sleep deprivation, triumph, and emphasis on community are just a few of the themes of one short weekend at Simon. Regardless of what my role has been in Scholarship Weekend, I have enjoyed each of them immensely. I have experienced Scholarship Weekend as an admitted student, current student and one day I look forward to experiencing it as an alumnus!
Lastly, I want to send a huge thanks to everyone involved in Simon’s Scholarship Weekend. The work that goes into planning and executing the event is a huge task that our staff, students, alumni and faculty handle with tremendous success each year.
The rise of “Big Data,” an avalanche of computer-generated information across industries, has created an increasing demand for highly skilled business analysts proficient in quantitative analysis. I am pleased to announce that Simon is revamping its existing MS Program in Business Analytics in response to the ever-growing “Big Data” world. In talking with our corporate recruiters, we received feedback that the ability to extract useful business insight from huge amounts of structured or unstructured data is crucial to the career of our graduates. Our MS Program in Business Analytics aims to provide business students with this training.
In addition to the rigorous classroom instruction grounded in data analysis that we are already known for, Simon has introduced more practical experience both in and out of the classroom:
- Two new boot camp courses will be offered to prepare students in R and SQL technologies.
- Two additional courses are being introduced: Advanced Data Mining and Machine Learning covers advanced analytics techniques such as neural networks and clustering high dimensional data; and in the Consulting Practicum, students will work with corporate clients, assessing the business context, and applying frameworks to suggest that identification of new strategies and technologies are key competencies.
- An optional internship track is also available that will extend the program from 11 to 17 months allowing time for a summer internship for students who enroll with limited professional work experience.
Our goal is to enhance the technical skills we provide with more opportunities for direct engagement with companies that have needs in the business analysis area. These curricular enhancements will begin with the class entering in August 2015. We hope you are as excited about these changes as we are! For more information, visit our website and contact the Admissions office at Admissions@simon.rochester.edu or 1-585-275-3533.
With the holidays coming up, you are probably looking forward to spending time with family and friends and taking a break from your regular routine. You may even be looking forward to the extra time you have to work on your B-school application(s).
A big part of the B-school application that tends to be on the top of every applicant’s mind is the role of the GMAT/GRE and undergrad GPA in the review process. What most students don’t realize is that test scores and transcripts are rarely the deciding factor in an admissions review – they merely help the Admissions Committee gauge your ability to handle the rigor of the MBA or MS program in which you are applying. Plus, Simon’s Admissions Committee will take a holistic approach when reviewing your application.
Simon will accept either the GMAT or GRE – you should choose the exam that you think best reflects your capabilities! If you are not satisfied with your test scores, consider taking the test again as schools will typically take your highest overall score. Keep in mind that we can see all test dates and scores, and when you have cancelled a score (GMAT only). It’s okay to take the exam a few times, but it will be concerning to the Committee if you take it too many times.
Check out this video of Stefanie Attridge, Director of Admissions and Enrollment at Simon, offering advice to applicants who may have a low GMAT or GRE score.
Undergrad Cumulative GPA
The Admissions Committee does not evaluate your GPA merely as a numerical calculation, we also consider the strength of the college or university you attended, the rigor of courses taken, your choice of major/minor, types of classes, and the trend in grades throughout school. On a secondary level, we are also interested in other demands on your time during undergrad such as employment or involvement in campus or community activities.
What should you do if your undergrad performance was below your capabilities, or if you didn’t have much quantitative coursework? Consider taking a statistics, calculus, economics, or financial accounting class at a local community college. This shows the Committee that you are trying to improve your skill set and prepare for B-school. Keep in mind that the Committee may request your final grade from additional coursework taken at other schools.
You cannot change your GPA at this point if you’ve already graduated, so use the Optional Essay to provide an explanation of any gaps in your undergrad coursework or weak performance on your transcript. You don’t want the Admissions Committee to come up with conclusions on their own!
Good luck as you continue to work through your application – we will look forward to receiving it for 2015!
Simon is a hidden gem in the world of business and I chose the school for a variety of reasons. Simon is unique because of its smaller size, allowing students to build close relationships with fellow students, professors and administration – all while receiving the attention that will help with personal and professional success. My Simon MBA has given me long-lasting friendships, trusted business partners, and a great network I can trust and depend on.
I am currently a Global Senior Marketing Manager at Intuit, Inc., which creates business and financial management solutions. The company’s Flagship products and services include TurboTax,® QuickBooks,® and Quicken®. I have the fortune of working with Intuit’s regional marketers to create and execute global marketing campaigns for customers, while being an ambassador of creating a global-first culture to drive growth. I also manage the Intuit Education Program that provides real-world experience in the classroom, enabling schools with the latest industry financial software, and giving them an edge on academic advancement and/or career progression.
My words of advice for prospective students considering Simon Business School: Don’t forget to stop and smell the roses! Get to know everyone that makes up the Simon community since these are the relationships you will go back to time and time again. And don’t limit yourself to Simon! There are other schools affiliated with the University of Rochester, relating to education, music and medicine, all of which have a reputation both nationally and internationally. Having these schools close by is a great opportunity to make connections, depending on your professional and personal interests.