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ApplyYourself vs Buckeyelink

If you have created an application account for the SMF program and have started working on your application, you have been using a system called ApplyYourself (“AY“). This screen shot should look familiar when you log in:

Screen shot of application in progress

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Once you submit your application to the SMF program, you will continue to visit AY to review your application checklist – this will tell you whether we have received your transcripts, your test scores, your letters of recommendation or any other application materials that were not submitted with your online application form.

Soon after submitting your application, you will receive an email from The Ohio State University that provides your OSU ID and OSU ID password. This information will be used to log into the Buckeyelink to check your application status as it pertains to a DECISION on your completed application. This site will be updated to indicate whether your application is in review, been approved for admission, been denied, or whether a decision has been deferred until a later date (wait listed):

For Fisher SMF applicants, this application status button on Buckeyelink is not where you go to make sure we have received your application materials. This is where you go to check on the status of your completed application.

To summarize:

Check AY to check the status of your application that has been submitted but not yet complete.

  • In other words, until your application is complete, check AY.

Check Buckeyelink to check the status of your application that has been submitted and is complete.

  • In other words, after your application is complete, check Buckeyelink.

 

Good luck!


“Have you received my …?” : Keeping the US Postal System busy (and vice versa)

We are being weighed down by a lot of mail. One of the results of the Fisher SMF program being one of the top graduate finance programs in the U.S.!

“I mailed my transcripts last week, did you get them?”

As a top ranked graduate finance program, the Fisher SMF application office is inundated with transcripts, GMAT scores, and applications this time of year. SMF staff is working tirelessly to make sure applications are complete for review.

If you have e-mailed us and we have not returned your e-mail, please note that the SMF email inbox is steeped with requests about whether or not applications materials have been received. It will take us several days (or more) for us to reply. Additionally, please note that it can take a few weeks for the staff members to update your status online. The best way to keep up with your application is to check your ApplyYourself account (read this blog post for a refresher). After all, if we are busy answering e-mails, who is going to process your application? At minimum, wait at least 7 days from the time you submit your application before you contact the office to check on status.

Last, we have received many requests asking if the admissions committee can review an application without official scores. The SMF program will not make decisions based upon scanned and uploaded copies of required test scores (e.g. GMAT, TOEFL/IELTS, etc.). Application deadlines are posted here. A recap of what you need to submit a complete application is posted here.


Who should be my reference? What should they say about me?

Very common question we get –> “Who would be a good reference for me if I’m applying to the Fisher SMF program? What should a good letter of reference include?”

The primary criterion you should use when determining who you should approach to be your reference is “someone who knows me WELL enough to write a STRONG letter of reference.” A strong letter of reference is the sort of recommendation that introduces relevant information about the subject (e.g. you) that we would not be aware of if we had not read the letter. For example, a letter that regurgitates and summarizes easy-to-obtain information is NOT a strong letter of reference. If a recommender references your GPA, for example, this is not unique information - we’ll see your GPA on your transcripts. If a recommender states simply that “(you) are an active member of the XYZ Community Service Organization,” this is not valuable information, especially if your involvement with that organization is listed on your resume.

A more valuable recommendation will provide the admissions committee with information about you that the committee could not obtain elsewhere. For example, if your reference is a professor for which you had a class, him or her saying that “you’re a good writer” is interesting. It becomes very useful for the admissions committee if that recommender states why s/he believes you are a good writer. In other words, s/he provides proof to support his/her opinion of you. This is much more effective that simply saying “(you) got an A in my class – s/he is a very good student.” Or if your recommender wants to comment on your involvement in the XYZ Community Service Organization, this is effective if s/he discusses what you accomplished in the organization, any positive results that occurred as a result of your involvement, and why s/he believes your involvement is indicative of your potential for success in this program. In summary, the best letters of reference do not simply tell us “what” –> the best letters explain whyand in detail. The best letters talk about those characteristics about you that, in their opinions, indicate your potential for success in the program if you were to be admitted and enroll.

Who should you approach for your recommendations? If you’re still in school or you’re a recent graduate, academic/faculty references carry the most weight with the admissions committee. If you have been out of school for a few years or more, it’s likely that professional references may be most appropriate in your situation. Do not get letters of reference from family, friends, and/or friends of your family <– these type of letters are judged negatively by the admissions committee.

Although your friends may be super, do not approach them to be your references for your graduate application

We look forward to reviewing your applications!


We’ll be in Chicago this Thursday and Friday

Fisher SMF will be in Chicago this week at University of Illinois-Chicago and at the University of Chicago for a couple of events. The details are listed below.

Thursday, October 4: 3:00PM-7:00PM
University of Illinois-Chicago (at the UIC Forum)
Chicago Graduate and Professional School Fair
725 West Roosevelt Rd
Chicago IL 60607

Friday, October 5: 12:00PM-4:00PM
University of Chicago
Graduate and Professional School Fair
Ida Noyes Hall, Cloister Club
1212 E 59th St
Chicago, IL 60637

If you’re in the area, please stop by. We’d love to chat with you about your interest in the program!


Admissions decisions = a branch of holism

We are often asked about statistics that describe the current SMF class. We have calculated the statistics that represent the 2013 Fisher SMF class. Click here for the class profile statistics.

Please know that this data is aggregated – it is a summary of over 40 students currently enrolled in the program. No single applicant looks the same. The admissions committee looks at everything in each applicant’s file – no one will be denied or admitted on a single criterion (e.g. GMAT, GPA, etc.). A high GMAT does not guarantee admission nor will a “low” GMAT necessarily prevent someone from being admitted into the program. The same is true for GPA. The admissions committee looks at everything – in other words, the committee is most concerned how your credentials (references, essays, transcripts, GMAT, resume), taken together, present a complete picture of you as a potential student in this program. We are not concerned so much with the individual components – individual components, by themselves, are not indicative of an applicant’s strengths. We are more concerned with how all of these individual components, taken together, comprise a complete picture of the applicant.

The whole is greater than the sum of the parts

 


Campus offices will be closed on Monday, Sept 3

All Ohio State campus offices, including the Fisher College of Business Graduate Programs Office, will be closed on Monday, September 3, 2012, in observance of Labor Day. All offices will reopen at 8:00 A.M. on Tuesday, September 4.

 


Introducing the 2012-13 My Fisher Grad Life SMF student bloggers

We have a group of Fisher SMF students who are blogging this year about their experiences in the program. Be sure to check the blog regularly to get an inside view of what the program is like from the perspective of someone who is in it.

 


If you’re applying and sending us transcripts via surface mail, be sure to do this

If you address your mail to us properly, we won't have to return it!

Part of the application process to the Fisher SMF program includes submitting your official transcripts. When sending us your transcripts, be sure you address them correctly.

SMF ADMISSIONS
Fisher College of Business/Graduate Programs Office
100 Gerlach Hall
2108 Neil Ave
Columbus OH 43210-1144

In addition to the actual street and building address, the most important part of the address above is the first line. It is not uncommon for applicants to send materials to us with no reference to the program to which s/he is applying. When mail arrives in our office, it gets sorted to the correct processing group. We have two processing groups – one for MBA programs and one for Specialized Masters Programs. If there is no reference to the specific program anywhere in the address, it gets sorted into the “Pending/Need to Research” workflow. You do not want your materials to be sorted into that workflow because it WILL cause a delay in processing.

Summary: Be sure to include the name of the program you are applying to somewhere in the address when sending us anything via surface mail.


“Columbus rated tops in Ohio for business”

According to Forbes magazine, Columbus, Ohio ranks #24 nationally on The Best Places for Business and Careers list.  A recent article in the Columbus Dispatch references Forbes latest list and quotes Alex Fischer, president and CEO of the Columbus Partnership as saying: “We are repeatedly showing up as one of the top cities in the Midwest,” he said. “The Midwest is having a renaissance, and Columbus is leading that.”

Learn more about life in Columbus and the Fisher SMF program.


3 Things to Keep in Mind When Preparing Your 2013 Fisher SMF Application

Three things to keep in mind when preparing your SMF application

Be aware of deadlines

Deadlines have a way of sneaking up on you. I recommend taking a look at the deadlines and working backward. If you want to submit your application by December 1, for example, you know that gives you approximately four months or sixteen weeks from now until then. You need to be aware of how long each item will take to be completed and submitted to us. Examples include but are not limited to:

GMAT: About two to four weeks will go by from the time you take the GMAT to the time we get your scores. Accordingly, if you want your scores to be here by December 1, you should plan on taking the GMAT no later than November 15.

References: How long will your references take to prepare their recommendations for you? Work backwards from December 1 and add an extra couple of weeks or more as “cushion” in case anything unforeseen and unpredicted occurs.

It is OK to submit things “out of order”

You do not need to wait before everything is complete before submitting your application materials. For example, you can submit GMAT scores before submitting your application. Conversely, you can submit your application before taking the GMAT. You can submit your application before all your references are received. You can submit your transcripts to us before you submit your application. And so on.

Be very aware of how long things will take to complete/submit when compiling your application materials – and assume it will take longer than you plan

As mentioned earlier, we will not receive your GMAT scores the day after you sit for the test. Plan for the lag time. Also, your references will need (on average) at least one month to prepare your letters of recommendation.

Transcripts can take a long or short time to get to us – it all depends on the university issuing the transcripts. And sometimes colleges “forget” to send them. Advice: Find out from your school how long it will take to issue your transcripts. Plan accordingly. Build in a margin of safety. And follow up with your school to ensure it sent them to us.

SPECIAL NOTE TO INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS:

TOEFL scores can take a long time to arrive at Ohio State. How long? It varies. It can be anything from several weeks to several months. The delay is almost always due to the TOEFL test administrator. If you are an international student and need to submit TOEFL or IELTS scores, be sure to keep in close touch with the TOEFL or IELTS test administrator.

 


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