Once you’re done with the several rounds of admission, you most eagerly wait for the final list of selected students to be out. But wait! You don’t find your name on the first list. Disheartened, you quickly go through to the waitlist to see if you’ve made it there. Number 12, yes, your application wasn’t entirely rejected and you did make it to the MBA waitlist. Even though the consolation price is enough to keep you hooked to the college’s website for the second and the third list, it still isn’t good enough to help you sleep in peace. You always have an eye out for that one person who wouldn’t accept admission to your school of choice.
Getting into the MBA waitlist is like being almost there but not there yet! So, what should you do to make the most of your time before you finally find your name in the second or maybe, the third list? We’ve planned an escape route for you. Have a look!
Accept the waitlist offer
In most cases, the colleges that offer the option of waitlist give you the option of either staying on the list or taking your name off the list. Before you decide to strike your name off, remember that staying on the MBA waitlist means that you’re still in the game! So, it is always better to accept the offer and wait for a while. Meanwhile, you can ask the college for feedback or review on your application. This will help you get a clear picture of the pits and falls of your application.
Follow the Rules laid by the Admissions Committee
While most websites suggest you to send your updated resume or notable accomplishments you’ve made in recent times, it is better to read the rules of the college’s admissions committee first. Several B-Schools shun down communications of all sorts from the waitlisted students, going as far as refusing them campus visits. Many, specifically, mention that they would not entertain follow-up material of any sort. So, before you decide to send an email to the college about your recent achievements, keep their rules in mind.
Make the most of all possibilities of communication
Contrary to the above-mentioned rules, there are a few colleges that permit students to send an additional essay. In such cases, it is important for you to send them an update about your recent accomplishments. Go through your previous essays to find out loopholes and details of your background that you might have missed. Add every little relevant detail to ensure that the next time your file is picked up for evaluation, you make it to the list of selected candidates.
Stay in touch
While sending one update is important, do not entirely vanish from the picture after the first follow-up. Try to keep the communication alive. If you happen to be in town, pay a visit to the college and indulge in a short conversation with the adcom. You can also send them updates occasionally, about the progress you’ve made. Make sure that you convey your interest in getting admission in the B-School. This will help in keeping you fresh in their minds before they lay another list out. Also, remember the difference between persistence and pestering; make judgements accordingly!
Unless you’re strictly asked to refrain from sending additional recommendation letters, you can consider submitting a new recommendation letter. This will help in bolstering your profile and will add value to your candidature. In case you’ve known or met an alumnus of the said B-School and are in their good books, you can approach them and request for a letter of support for your candidacy. Also, keep in mind that you should not send in a letter of any sort unless you have anything to add to the pile of your listed credentials.
Have a Plan B
While it is good to be enthusiastic about your waitlisted application, you should always have a contingency plan. Even if it is the dream B-School where you’ve been waitlisted, you must think about possibilities where you might not make it to the final list. You may want to apply again to the same college but what plans do you have for the coming year? Keeping things in perspective, chalk out the essential steps that can help you strengthen your application for the next year. You can also choose to apply to another college. The choice is yours. Make hay while the sun shines!
Being on the MBA waitlist might have cons, but it teaches you one thing in particular: Patience. You think about what-ifs, imagine all possible outcomes and plan accordingly. All in all, staying on the waitlist means you still are in the race which means you have a good chance of making it to the final list. So, before you get disheartened and lose all hopes, keep this in mind: Where for some the glass is half empty, for many it is half full.