GMAT: Very poor undergrad GPA, How to target top B-Schools in US?

You played your undergraduate years fast and loose, and ended up with a not so great GPA. Now what?

Does this mean an end to your quest or can you turn it around? What do you do with something you can’t undo? A thing that you are saddled with for life. How do you get into a top B School in the United States where the first thing they’ll do is circle your low GPA with a bright red mark and reject you. Or will they?

First, let us talk about what is considered bad? A GPA of 3-ish is considered anything between average and bad.

What else you can do inside qs leap ?

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Although this can’t be undone, you can prop it up with your GMAT score. Score above 700 and you have scored a brownie point right there.

Write a good essay. Your essay will tide over if your reason for getting a low GPA is genuine and valid, your B School might, just might over look your crappy GPA. For example, tell them what was your academic major was. In B School rulebooks, some majors are tougher than others. If you studied physics rather than, say, art history, then a having a lower GPA is far less a cause of concern.

Another thing that can possibly bail you out is where you went to school. Was it an Ivy? If it was, keep that chip firmly on your shoulder. According to, approximately 30% of Harvard’s incoming class are grads of the 8 Ivy League schools. Less than 18% come from public universities.

Did you face adversity during your undergraduate years? If you did, this might just be the time to convert your pain into gold. Tell them what happened. says, “If issues such as family, health, part-time work, or extra-curriculars impaired your classroom performance, then you need to explain those factors. Turn it into a true story of persistence against all odds.”

Did you work before applying to business school? If yes, then your employer can help you out.

According to a 2011 article again, the top organizations send their treasured  employees to Harvard. Financial and consulting firms represent a bulk of applicants to most Ivy Leagues. The tech companies and non-profits however send fewer people to colleges on their dime with good recommendations. Having a resume that has a good word from your employer can be just the boost that your low GPA and get you into the Business School you want.


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