Just a quick note today – I wanted to recap my interview at Ross for you all. I’m trying to keep it short because I’m in the middle of preparing for my upcoming rapidly approaching Johnson interview. I’m not going to go into too much about the program or the campus – you can find that info from my visit here.
So as I mentioned earlier, I was invited to interview at Ross a few weeks back. It would not be my first interview of the application season, but it would be my first interview that I was invited to. I was not so worried about the interview for a few reasons. First, I had already had interviews at Tuck and Fuqua. Second, I know my “stories” cold. Finally, I’ve always been a pretty good interviewee. At least, I think I have been.
Since I already had interviews with second year students, I had a general feel for how the interview would go. This shouldn’t be surprising, since Fuqua and Tuck have a lot in common with Ross, so it would make sense that their interview process should be similar, or at least seek out similar information. Having these interviews before my Ross interview really helped take the edge off – I knew what to expect throughout the day. The only loop that Ross threw at me was the group interview, which I thought was pretty fun. Just as Soojin bills it in her blog – it is a great way to see how teamwork is used at Ross, as well as a neat way to interact with ~8 of the other applicants. There is no reason to stress out as there is no business knowledge tested: my group talked about cats and aquariums…
Another reason I was at ease is because I knew my stories frontwards and backwards. I spent a lot of effort crafting my essays, and even before writing a single word, I spent a lot of effort searching and refining my experiences into short blurbs that I could use for admissions. This process of combing through my past left me with a good answer for just about every question that beings “tell me about a time when…”. Furthermore, I know Ross well. I visited the campus a few months back, sat in on a Q&A session, talked to current students, and sat in on a class. Furthermore, Ross’s essay set explicitly asks “Why Ross”, so doing my due diligence for that question only added to my knowledge of the program. I was a bit disappointed that I wasn’t explicitly asked the “Why Ross” question in my interview, as I was saving a very good story for that question. Instead, I got some general questions that could have applied to “why Ross”, but decided not to waste my story on them. Oh well – can only deal the cards you are dealt.
Finally, I think I interview pretty well. I am not trying to be boastful, and let me explain. When I was looking to make a change from engineering to finance, I had several interviews. These interviews quickly made me realize that I needed to improve on what signals I was sending as it related to my branding. While I did not go so far as to practice interview questions, I constantly thought about how my experiences could be used in the future. When I landed my job in finance, knowing that I still would be pursuing an MBA, I did not stop this practice. Call it neurotic, but it has been helpful through my 3 interviews thus far.
So there, after setting out to write a short post, I have written a relatively long one. Oops. Up next, look for a in depth review of Johnson!