Can I get my MBA at Harvard or MIT as a mediocre student?

By | December 2, 2015

In the summer of 2010 I will graduate from FIU (Florida International University) with a Bachelors Degree in Liberal Studies. I spent two years focusing on Marketing until I realized I wanted a broader, more well-rounded education backed by specific marketing courses. I took classes ranging from physics, computer science, biology, and philosophy and I plan on graduating with a 2.5 GPA.

Aside from a low GPA, I have a lot of business experience. I started selling virtual items on eBay through my e-commerce store at the age of 12. As a highly motivated individual with a lot of creativity and ambition, I launched an online business in my 2nd year of college geared towards offering hosting solutions and web development. I attained $10k in investment from family, I had impressive growth over 3 years, and now I plan on selling the company.

This experience led me to realize I could attack a niche in the hosting industry and eventually developed a new, unique concept. I’m about to graduate from FIU and at the same time, I’m seeking financing for my new venture. The scale of this new business is much larger than my previous ones and I’m hoping this will impress university recruiters (assuming I attain capital for the venture and launch the concept). I’ve convinced investors that the concept is impossible to duplicate due to patent pending technology I’ve developed.

I’m also very well connected with top officials, successful entrepreneurs, etc. that have seen me in action. I am prepared to ask them for a referral when I plan on applying to graduate schools. However, I just want to have a practical mindset so I can understand what milestones I need to achieve in order to gain entrance to a top-tier MBA program like Harvard or MIT’s. I plan on spending the next year or two preparing my curriculum vitae and then applying for graduate school.
I forgot to mention that I plan on getting tutoring for the GMAT from a Duke alumni.

Download PDF

5 thoughts on “Can I get my MBA at Harvard or MIT as a mediocre student?

  1. RoaringMice

    If your GMAT ends up being extremely, extremely strong, then you might perhaps stand a chance. It’ll be a long shot – your GPA is very low for those schools – but you will honestly stand a chance.

    But your GMAT needs to be unbelievably strong.

  2. PE2008

    This may come as a severe shock to you but it must be said:

    With a 2.5GPA, you’re not going to make it to Harvard or MIT.


  3. Tangent

    I know guys with 780-790 GMAT that didn’t get in. They only take the best of the best, and sadly, a GPA below 3.5 means you weren’t the best in undergrad. I usually tell people to apply since you anything could happen, but sadly you won’t make the first cutoff at any top ten MBA program as is. You do have an option though. If HBS or MIT is your dream I would recommend getting a master’s in a quantitative field (math, stats, financial math, etc.) and doing well. Then you might be able to get the MBA program to ignore your undergrad GPA if you can prove you are good at school. For them to overlook a 2.5 undergrad GPA you are going to have to get almost perfect scores though… Best of luck!

  4. Low

    It’s not impossible, but it’s very very tough and highly unlikely. Your chances are bad to begin with, and with the bad economy they’re even worse (since more people are applying). The only thing that could possibly redeem you is an AMAZING incredible story of work experience. Something that would make their heads explode when they read it. Unfortunately, my head did not explode reading yours. However, I encourage you to check out other MBA programs that you definitely still have a shot at! If you’re interested, you can read about my experience in applying to top schools with a low gpa here:

  5. Prof

    It is unlikely you will get into Harvard or MIT, but you should certainly try. Good connections may help, but these schools reject 90 percent of highly qualified applicants. However there are many other very excellent MBA programs. Before you decide on an MBA program explore the Internet for information on available programs. There is a lot of information available in free public service sites. Some sites are limited to specific countries, such as Germany, UK, or Australia. Some list a small number of select schools, while others may include more than 2,000 MBA programs listed worldwide. You can find the program that best fits you. You can search for programs by location (US, Europe, Far East, etc.), by concentration (finance, marketing, aviation management, health management, accounting, etc.), by type of program (full-time, distance learning, part-time, executive, and accelerated), and by type of degree (MBA, MS, Ph.D). In some cases you can select your own criteria and preferences to get a list of universities that satisfy your needs.

    You can find data on entrance requirements, program costs, program characteristics, joint degrees such as MBA/JD, and much more. Some sites have links to the schools’ web sites, or provide email addresses to contact schools of your choice, and send them pre-applications. You can find lists of top schools ranked by various periodicals or ranked by starting salaries of graduates, GMAT scores, and other criteria. Generally you should stay away from any sites that require you to pay to get information or that promise to find scholarships for you or ensure acceptance into a program.

Comments are closed.