Applying: Part 9 (interviews)

At this point the application process is almost over. If you’ve gotten the interview invite then congrats! You deserve it!

I’m going to keep this post fairly GSB-centric since the interviews for all of my schools were similar. I received the invite in late October and had just over a week of prep time. Most GSB interviews happen off-campus with alumni. Mine was on-campus with a member of the admissions staff. This is probably due to a combination of location (I lived on campus so geographically she was the closest interviewer) and my age (as a college senior I was a fairly young applicant so they probably wanted to make sure that I was mature enough to attend).

As soon as I got the invite I stepped up my research on the GSB. Since I happened to live a three-minute bike ride away I began heading over the campus once or twice a day to make friends. It’s amazing how enthusiastic current students are about talking to applicants and convincing them that the GSB could be the perfect place for them. For about $30 worth of coffee/tea I was able to glean piles of information that hadn’t been available anywhere else (hopefully future applicants will be able to find that type of information on this blog once I get to campus in the fall).

At my other schools I didn’t have the luxury of weeks of informational interviews. But I did do my best to show up on campus a day or two before the interview and spend every minute I could talking with current students.

My GSB interview was right after I finished a class, so I ended up biking across campus in a suit and nice shoes and running around the building trying to find someplace to stash my  backpack. I made it to the admissions office with seconds to spare—my interviewer was just stepping out of her office to come find me. We headed down the hall to a quiet room and proceeded to have a wonderful conversation. Because my interviewer was a member of the admissions committee she had already seen my entire application (I think that usually they just get a copy of your resume which they might (not) read in advance). It was surprisingly relaxing to know that she already had an idea of my background and overall candidacy and could ask the questions she needed to ask to determine if I was a good fit. I think the main reason I was so relaxed was because I knew I was a good fit for the school and felt confident that I could demonstrate that fact.

We skipped over the basic questions about why business school and why the GSB and dived right into a lot of behavioral stuff about my thought process during different incidents I had written about in my essays. The interviewer also asked for some more specifics on summer jobs and my motivation for picking certain jobs. She also pressed a little to make sure that I had done my research on the GSB, making me very thankful for all those days hanging around in the cafeteria buying students coffee.

And that was that. I knew what I was talking about, I was confident, and I spent the entire interview demonstrating how much I knew about the school and how perfectly I would fit in.


About backinthebay2015

Stanford GSB class of 2015
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2 Responses to Applying: Part 9 (interviews)

  1. Hi

    I came across your bschool journey to the GSB and find the posts very insightful.

    I am building an online portal, EssaysApps ( to help people find the best hand-picked answers for their educational journey.

    You’d be happy to know that I’ve included some of your posts on the site, hoping that you would be interested in sharing your story with a wider audience such as

    All posts have backlinks to this blog. Many thanks for your help, and please let me know if I can help you in some way.

    Warm wishes

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