Thursday, February 14, 2008

NYU Stern Interview experience log

Finally I got down to write my NYU Stern interview experience.

As is required by Stern, I went for an onsite interview at Stern campus in New York for the interview. Anyways, since I didn't visit the school before so I really wanted to experience everything first hand.

My interview was taken by an Associate Director of admissions. She was really a very nice lady and made me feel comfortable before we jumped on the actual questions. She asked me about my plan for the New York trip and how I am finding the city and also talked about SF (where I am living presently) weather.
Then she mentioned to me that this interview is not a blind interview and she has already read my essays, recommendations, resume and my application well. Also she clarified that this is not going to be an interrogation but will just be a casual chat which really helped in calming my nerves. Actually it was my first ever B school interview, so was a little tense but i was also confident on my preparation.

She started with my present experience. She was so well acquainted with my present profile that she asked me a very specific question about the work I am doing presently and that really impressed me a lot. As I am working in a technology consultancy firm I have worked for several Big Retail clients at multiple locations within US and in India. She also asked about my experience on that. It never seemed like she was just asking me questions. In fact it felt like we were just discussing things.
As I have worked with two biggest US retailers she asked me about what is my opinion about their working and what will I suggest them if I need to devise a strategy for them. This question caught me a bit off guard. I though about it a bit and then was able to answer it well.
Then we moved on to my short term goal and she asked me very specific question on that which again was impressive. This interview can really be called a personal interview and I was really impressed on the amount of effort she had put in going through my application material
Type of question which was asked was:-
1) Why I wanted to make a career switch?
2) How will I make the career switch?
3) How will Stern help me in making this switch and reaching my goals?
4) What will be the biggest obstacle I will face in getting to my short term goal/making the career switch?
5) How will you decide on which company you will join after graduating from Stern and why?

I was also asked:

1) If you are selected by several top schools how will you make your final decision?

I am unable to recall some of the questions :( but will update this post here if I am able to recll more.

The duration for my interview was 40 minutes including the time for my questions.

She mentioned to me after the interview that - “You really have done your research so well - Why was I asking you questions - you should have asked me" :). So that really gave me a very positive feeling and I was just waiting for the results.

I was really impressed by the Stern campus, though it’s a small campus. But the facilities were really excellent and all of the people were so friendly. After giving admits, the initiative which Stern has taken to connect all the admitted candidates and the way they reply to any of the queries which I have really shows the cooperative and collaborative culture which Stern has. Also its location in the heart of Manhattan - nothing can beat that. Just hop 2-3 subway stops and there you are standing on the Wall Street :)

For the interview one thing which is very important is:

You may not be asked on many of the things and thus may not get the opportunity to speak whatever you would have thought. So you need to plan during the interview itself that you speak everything you thought of conveying to the admission committee. Don't miss this opportunity and just space out various points in your replies and keep them impressed. It's important that whatever question you answer, you are able to convey one important point so that the interviewer remembers that. This becomes a little difficult when the interview is not blind since you need to go one step further from what you wrote in the application.

Do let me know if any of you guys have any questions?


Clear Admit said...

Hello Achilles,

Congratulations on what sounds like a great Stern interview! This entry is particularly informative of how Stern's familiarity with your profile shaped the interview. Would you be willing to post this report to the Clear Admit Wiki for the benefit of other applicants? You can do so by clicking here, or simply e-mailing the text to (we’ll be sure to link back to your blog when we post your information).

We’d also love to hear about campus visits and the factors that influenced your decisions about where to apply.

Thanks and congratulations on the Stern admit!


Papillon said...

Thanks Achilles
I read your blog very often. So good to see your message.. Thanks a lot. I started early coz of my limited writing skills. I hope I actually manage to achieve something out if this process.

Thanks again

Clearadmit Blog said...

Going the extra mile for future applicants (although they could be resting on their laurels), B-School Bound and Achilles doled out essential essay tips and a comprehensive Stern interview account, respectively.....

Anonymous said...

Congrats on the great interview and the admit. Way to go!

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Shraddha said...

Congratulations! Stern is indeed THE place to be, esp cuz of the whole NYC experience.

Stern is my foremost choice of bschool as I hail from Mumbai & am certain will blend in very well into its culture.

Have read your blog and find it very insightful. Would really appreciate your help in throwing any light on your experiences out there.

Good Luck,

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