HBS is in the air today, since the first of the HBS interview invites are going out today.
This post is not about that.
It is about HBS though, however it’s geared to people at the complete opposite end of the process.
Awhile ago we has an exchange we had with a motivated Brave Supplicant who’s currently finishing college and is planning for an application to HBS 2+2 before graduation. We were so impressed that this Brave Supplicant was starting to do research so early — the first inquiry came in July or August of 2011 and this kid isn’t going to be applying for a full year from then! To (hopefully!) start the 2+2 program a full year later! Which actually means not starting classes until 2015! Which means not graduating with the MBA until 2017!!
Phew! Talk about planning things in advance!
Anyway, we told you before about the question on GRE vs GMAT and timing.
This time we’re going to share an earlier exchange we had, about application rounds, specifically about interviewing. Note that this is specific to HBS 2+2. Some of what we’ve got here tells you about the standard HBS application process, but read it carefully if you’re applying to that program since not everything that we say is fully relevant to a standard Harvard MBA application.
Here’s the question we got:
First of all I’d like to thank you for your very prompt responses, all of which have been of great help to me. [You’re welcome! ES.] There is this one thing that i am a little confused about. The HBS 2+2 program invites applications in four rounds, including a summer round. Now, in the summer round the chosen applicants are required to fly to Boston for their interviews. This might prove to be slightly inconvienient for me, considering that I live near [foreign city]. At the same time I have heard from quite a few people that if one applies in one of the earlier rounds at HBS there is a greater probability of getting in. [Uh, yeah. You probably heard it from EssaySnark.] So I m a little torn as to when I should apply for the program. I do want the advantage of applying early but at the same time flying to Boston might be a little difficult. I will once again be very grateful for your valuable advice.
Here’s what we said:
Hi [BraveSupplicant] – that’s a very good question.
You are right: In past years, when they had just one (summer) deadline for the 2+2 program, HBS had a requirement that in order to apply, you needed to be willing to fly to campus in Boston to do the interview if they were interested in you. That requirement is still true to apply in that first early (summer) 2+2 round. However, now that they’ve opened up the three additional rounds for 2+2 applicants, they can fit the interviewing in with their standard admissions process. That means that if you apply in one of those three rounds, you’ll be able to interview in any of the cities that the HBS adcom travels to. In previous years, interviews for candidates applying through the main application Round 1 and Round 2 cycles have been held in [foreign city near where BSer lives] (along with many other cities too). The adcom does not travel all over the world for Round 3 interviews, usually those are only held in the U.S.
So, yes you should try to apply in the earliest round if you can, however if you would be unable to travel to the Harvard campus for the interview, then you probably should NOT apply in the summer 2+2 round. It sounds like maybe the second cycle (the main Round 1 process with the October deadline) would be the ideal target for you.
Of course, the school might change their processes and policies again next year when it comes time for you to apply, so you’ll need to make all these decisions when they make those announcements. But that’s probably how it will work out next year.
A few links:
- Here’s the current HBS 2+2 application info page; note that this is being posted when the application for HBS 2+2 Class of 2016 is active.
- Here’s the standard interviewing info for Harvard – note that they also will do interviews via Skype however this isn’t ideal for you, the Brave Supplicant, so we didn’t discuss it above.
As we stated before, very impressed with this BSer’s motivation and all the planning-ahead. Good stuff! You’re gonna need it to be successful at this school. 🙂
And for those of you biting your nails in advance of the Rd 2 interview invites going out — GOOD LUCK!!