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Isn't this BIAS?

For people who know me, they describe me as humble and diplomatic. I'm usually calm, and it's hard to get me emotional. Nonetheless, our experience with a university in an undisclosed top-study destination raised my temper. And this says much... 

We both applied for the same MBA program without stating that we were a couple, and our goal was to keep this secret. We got to know each other at university as we coincided in both our major and minor. Don't frame me as boring if I share that we also got into the same consulting firm. Though we are on the same hierarchical level, my partner is learning less. It's probably not too difficult to understand why. This makes us slightly different. :-)

To mitigate risk, we applied to 3 institutions:

  1. A safe choice in which we checked all the boxes and with whom we had several interactions to understand that they wanted to entice us with scholarships. 
  2. An OK choice for which we had the right profile but had to show slightly our competitive side to be sure to get admitted. 
  3. THE DREAM SCHOOL, for which we had to bluff our way, but we had the proper credentials, consulting experience, and social engagements. An Admission to this school would make us very proud. 

In short, as anticipated, we secured a spot in our safe choice. Celebrations were in order when we received acceptance letters from our DREAM SCHOOL - a huge sigh of relief!

However, my partner was granted admission at our OK choice while I faced rejection. She even snagged a scholarship for her exceptional career journey to add salt to the wound. While I'm genuinely happy for her success, she never misses an opportunity to tease me.

Yet, I can't help but question the selection criteria of this particular university. The lack of feedback on the decision leaves me wondering about the transparency of the process, especially for rejected candidates who poured their hearts into their applications. Thankfully, a friend from the university shed some light on the situation, explaining that my profile was deemed "normal" while my partner's was seen as "outstanding." I'm left pondering how such judgments were reached without a formal interview.

Although I'm not bothered by the rejection, knowing that we are both heading to our dream school it does raise concerns about the potential bias in the admissions process. It makes me reflect on how prevalent such biases may be within the admissions community.


If you are interested in learning about bias, please visit 2040 University Success to read our latest articles on this topic. For admissions advice, see our University Success page or contact us.