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The big update

July 20th, 2004 No comments

Wow, it’s been over a month since I last posted…  Work, home life, and MBA admissions have all been crazy recently – one thing after another just keeps me from posting!!  Let me try to recap as best I can…  Lets see, when I left you last I was drained, but had to get ready for my Chicago interview…  So, I’ll pick up there…

 


Driving to Chicago had to be the most stressful drive I’ve had in a while…  To give you some background, my interview was on Friday, 6/18. We had a release at work on the night of Thursday 6/17…  For the non-techie audience, a “release” is when we update our production software with the newest version…  So, I left work on Thursday at about 2:30pm due to a power outage, and came back at 5pm. Then I worked from 5pm until about 6am on Friday morning…  I figured that I’d go home, take a shower, do a little more preparation for my interview, and then leave for Chicago around 8:30am…  Well, that didn’t happen…  I was so tired from working over night that I actually fell asleep, and didn’t get up until about 8am…  We didn’t leave for Chicago until about 11am…  Showing up at 6pm on a Friday for an interview that was supposed to be at 4pm was pretty much useless…  However, things worked out for two reasons: firstly we had budgeted more time to get there than it actually takes, and secondly Bhairavi and I drove pretty fast on the way there to make up for lost time…  I arrived at the Gleacher Center at 3:30pm, a half hour before my interview time…  As soon as I sat in the chair in the lobby to calm myself before the interview, I started feeling tired…  Damn it, I should have worked some sleep in somewhere!!  During the interview I struggled with sleep deprivation, and so I wasn’t as cohesive as I would normally be…  When all was said and done, I was just glad to be out of the interview…  I knew in the back of my mind that this was my worst interview yet (MBA admissions or otherwise)!  As I left the Gleacher Center, I didn’t even think about the interview – I was ready to start a relaxing weekend vacation in Chicago!!

The Chicago Interview – 6/18/2004

 

 


It was Monday, June 21, 2004, and I was back in the office after spending the weekend in Kenosha, Wisconsin with family.  The weekend was a nice way to kick back and be relieved from all the pressure of the Chicago interview…  I was sort of tired, but also very anxious – in two days I’d know what the University of Michigan Business School admissions team had decided about my fate. The week before I had gotten a false alarm – a mail that I thought contained my decision, but rather simply stated that my decision would be available at 12:01AM on 6/23/2004…  I had already decided that I would stay up late on Tuesday night (6/22) to view the decision…  I was then either going to go to sleep really excited and relieved, or really sad and worried…  The time was about 4:30pm, and the weather outside was gorgeous…  It had been a hard day and work, and I was tired and ready to throw in the towel…  I was still stressed by the Chicago essays I still had to write…

News from Michigan!! – 6/21/2004

 

Just as I was about to leave, my phone rang…  I didn’t recognize the number – the area code was 734…  My tired mind immediately associated the “734″ area code with the “740″ area code of Delaware, Ohio…  I knew some people in Delaware, but who would call me at 4:30pm on Monday?  I picked up the phone…  “Nationwide, this is Yash” I said inquisitively…  “Hello, Yash Patel?” the voice on the other end asked. “Yes, this is Yash,” I replied…  “Hello, my name is [...] from the University of Michigan Business School…”  “What??!!” I thought to myself…  “The University of Chicago?  Why are they calling me? I just interviewed a few days ago, they can’t possible have a decision for me…  Heck, I haven’t even submitted the application…  Oh, wait a minute, she said the University of Michigan”…  She continued “I want to be the first to congratulate you on your admission to the University of Michigan Business School!”…  My jaw dropped, and my mind went blank…  “No shit! You’ve got to be kidding me” I replied in my bewildered state… I quickly followed up, “I’m sorry, I can’t believe it – I’m so happy!”…

All of a sudden a tired Monday afternoon turned into a lively, energetic day…  The first thing I did was call Bhairavi…  She just screamed with excitement as I broke the news to her…  I then interrupted colleagues who were discussing work to share the great news!!  I was completely floored since my decision had arrived earlier than expected…  I had assumed that all statuses would be updated on the website and that I’d find out late on Tuesday night…  I was not expecting a personal phone call on Monday afternoon!!  A huge sense of relief, accomplishment, and satisfaction overcame me – I had finally reached my goal of being admitted to a top 10 business school…  I have made some bad academic decisions in the past, but I’ve been able to overcome all of them and move forward…  I had a renewed sense of self-respect…

 


We had a trip planned this weekend to Put-in-Bay, Ohio, and then Cedar Point…  All of our college friends had planned on going – this would be the last big group trip for Bhairavi and I for a while…  Once school starts and we move, we simply wouldn’t be able to do something like this…  I still hadn’t gotten my essays done as we started the week of June 21…  My goal was to absolutely have them all written before I left…  I didn’t want to feel guilty about not working on essays while I was on vacation…  We were to leave early on Friday morning…  Sure enough, there I was at 6:30 am, the day we’re leaving for vacation, adding final touches to my essays…  After getting them finished I mailed them out for review, and then went about my way to a relaxing time, celebration for my Michigan decision, and lots of alcohol!!!

A weekend to relax and celebrate – 6/25/2004

 

Mailing the essays for review had a strange feeling…  This was it…  I was done…  These were the last essays, I would not have to write any more…  My battle of several months had finally come to an end…  I was glad…  I was getting tired…

Not much to write about the weekend…  Put-In-Bay was okay – I don’t think I’d go again…  Cedar Point was great fun – it made up for a lousy Put-In-Bay…:)

 


Damn, we were exhausted!!  After late nights, alcohol, swimming pools, and a day at Cedar Point, I was exhausted…  I was hoping that work would be light this week…  I got a note back from Jackie, my colleague who had so kindly reviewed my essays…  She had a few minor suggestions on two of my Chicago essays, and more substantial comments on the third…  I wasn’t surprised…  To be honest, I was completely satisfied with the third essay either…  Neither was Bhairavi, or Vijay (another colleague of mine who was reviewing essays)…  So, although I thought I was done and had set my mind in the “done with the applications phase”, I had to go back to the drawing board…  I started by tweaking the third essay, then ended up rewriting it all together…  The next day I resubmitted my essay for review…  This time the feedback was much better…  I’m glad I rewrote the essay – my own confidence, and that of my reviewers, really made me feel a heck of a lot better about my Chicago app (although memories of the interview were still depressing)…

Back to the drawing board – 6/28/2004

 

 


Finally got the Chicago app done and submitted…  I’m happy with the essays and pretty happy with everything else that goes with the app…  I’m a little surprised and disappointed that Chicago doesn’t require a resume to be submitted with the application – I think my resume is fairly good…  I’m also still bummed about the interview – but that’s past me, and I can’t change it…  I didn’t make my goal of submitting by mid-June, or before we went to Put-In-Bay…  But I’m really glad that I submitted before the start of July…  In the worst-case scenario, I should hear from Chicago by the middle of August – two weeks before Michigan orientation…  Now I’m finally free from the application process…

Now I’m really done – 6/30/2004

 

 


The last several weeks have been pretty busy…  Work has been unconventionally rough and stressful…  My personal life has also been demanding…  There are a lot of changes going on at work, and the atmosphere is very tense and uncertain…  Our business partner (the person who determines the requirements and future direction for the application we’re building) took an opportunity in another area – so our project is currently orphaned…  In addition my team knows that I’m definitely leaving to go to school this summer, so they’ve posted for my replacement, and are in a transition mode…  Finally my boss (who by the way is by far the BEST manager I’ve every had) is also taking an opportunity elsewhere within the organization, so we’re planning for her to leave…  As a matter of fact, she’ll be leaving before I will!!

NYU, where are you??!! – Today, 7/20/2004

 

So, in all the chaos of work, I’m trying to find peace with myself…  It’s been weird not going home and working on applications for the last three weeks…  This weekend has been the first weekend in months where I’ve been bored!!  I have been getting other things done (such as some work on the Maxima, and bringing up my computer environment at home)…  Bhairavi spent all of last week with her parents, so I was alone and missed her…

So, with all that said, the important question is: where’s NYU??!!  This Friday will mark the end of the 10th week after I applied…  The way things are going on, I don’t think I’ll have a decision from them by then…  I think 8-10 weeks for an admissions decision is absolutely ridiculous!!!  I called NYU this morning and told them that I have to make a decision for my second choice school, and so I really need to know what NYU’s decision will be…  But they weren’t able to help at all…  I was told that a lot of decisions will be updated online this week and next…  Next week will be the 11th week…  What happened to 8-10 weeks, folks??!!  I was also advised that if I really need to know by a certain date, then I should write the admissions committee chairperson and let them know of my situation…  I still can’t fathom what the admissions committee could possibly be doing for 8-10 weeks!  I don’t know why I’m going to all this trouble…  With an accept from Michigan, I’ve already decided that NYU is out…  I guess I’m just really anxious…  I’m looking for filler to fill the space between now and Chicago’s decision – an admit from NYU would make great filler!!

On a related note, I do have some news from Chicago…  Well, it’s not news really…  I spoke with someone in the Chicago admissions office last Thursday…  She was a LOT more helpful than the folks at NYU…  I explained to her that I have to make a decision for my second choice school soon, and asked what the best way would be to get notified as soon as possible about Chicago’s decision…  Well, it turns out that Chicago does not post their decision online…  They also don’t email their decision…  The only notification they give is a mailed letter!  But the lady in the admissions office was kind enough to advise that I call her every Friday to check the status…  She said that they generally shoot to have decisions made closer to the 4-week end of their 4-6 weeks notification period…  She also said that since I have to notify my second choice school soon she’ll watch for my application as it comes out of the initial review and make sure it is quickly passed onto the second review without sitting on a desk somewhere…  I learned one other thing – all applications WILL get three reviews…  Two preliminary reviews, and then one by the director of admissions…  I’m crossing my fingers and hoping that I’ll hear from Chicago by Friday 7/28…

Wow, I’ve written a lot…  I’ve caught you up on the last month’s happenings all in one week…  I’ll try to do a better job of keeping you all up to speed from now on…  For now, I’m going to rest my aching hands, and curse a little more at NYU…:)

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