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Hey y'all, I'm applying to IEOR and related PhDs for Fall 2022. I've had a few interviews (Georgia Tech, Northwestern, Berkeley) but still waiting for most of my top choices. Trying to figure if people have started hearing back from MIT, Stanford, or Columbia? If you're applying to any of these or other similar programs, I'd love to hear your story. I'm sure now is a tricky time for most of us so hopefully this thread helps ease some of the anxiety!
I wanted to say THANK YOU to this great group of supportive people. I've been working on getting into a PhD program for the last two years, and I finally got in!!!!! Last year was incredibly deflating as rejection after rejection poured in. After wallowing for a little bit (but not too long, I have a family with one small kiddo at the time and another kiddo that was born right in the middle of the rejections, so I was quickly distracted by life), I made a plan to try again. As I told one of my recommenders "As with any setback, I am taking this as an opportunity to regroup, reassess, and improve." Below is a description of what I did, in case it's helpful to anyone else out there who finds themselves in the same position this year (if so, you can still do it!). I reached out to every school that had said no (all 13 of them), and bugged anyone who would pick up a phone or answer and email to figure out what happened. It was really two buckets: Bad fit of program with my research, or I was simply not in the top 2-5 applicants. So, I did three big things to close the gap and increase my odds: First I started from scratch on defining what my research interests actually are by constructing a realistic research topic I could dive into on day one, and then sticking with that in every conversation. This helped me rapidly filter programs that didn't match, and quickly gave me new leads in conversations ("We don't do that sort of behavioral operations work here, but Professor XYZ at school ABC is an expert. Let me send her an email") Next I did something very practical: I retook the GRE. And this time I really studied for it! I actually bought an online course (Magoosh if anyone is interested) and listened to every lecture and did every practice problem (all 1200+ of them). After three months of work on nights and over my lunch breaks, I went from 76th percentile in quantitative reasoning to 92nd percentile. I also improved my other scores (got a perfect verbal the second time), but that quant score came up during my interviews repeatedly. Will knowing how to quickly find the number of non-repeating diagonals in an arbitrary n-gon help me in my PhD studies? No. But I finally had a score that matched my ability to learn and it made an incredible difference this year in opening doors. Finally, I did something radical. I quit my job. Technically, I formed an independent consulting firm to work on non-traditional projects, which I really did do! It just also gave me the flexibility to physically drive to campuses around the East Coast and meet faculty and students in person. I was literally checking doors to see if they were locked and wandering into offices to introduce myself. Forming that company has been a terrible financial decision (man I miss corporate healthcare), but it gave me the flexibility to become a known face when my application came up for review. Face-Time = Name-Recognition = Success The result: Multiple acceptances, including to my absolute top choice, and incredible connections at many fine research institutions that I will be able to use in the years ahead! Plus no wallowing! The entire time, I was looking here at The Grad Cafe and reading about other's work and experiences applying, both failures and successes. The stories here, and genuine heartfelt support and advice was one of the things that kept me going. Thank you all for your support, and good luck to those still reaching for the dream!
Hello everyone, Every where I look, the management sciences (and or operations management) areas of management PHD state GRE scores in the 90th. Where are the schools that accept us, the mortals? Also, any suggestions as to good programs in that area? All the best, Felipe