Berkeley MFE interview process is very chaotic at times. They ask these current students to conduct interviews and this approach is problematic in my opinion. Many of these students are knowledgable but can't speak properly in person, let alone be clear on the phone.I suppose it could have gone better. I had an extremely hard time understanding what the interviewer was saying because he had a thick accent. There were some questions that I was not able to answer immediately.
I think it does. But it is another layer to filter applicants ....Make sure your second one goes very good. You can still make it.Is it true that recommendation of the interviewer plays an inordinately significant part in the Berkeley MFE admissions? I wonder if I am being asked for a second interview because my initial interviewer gave me a bad recommendation.
You bring a very good point about the process. While you can color it as "having a thorough, rigorous filtering process by students and alumni of the program", the downside is that you don't have the same group of people to do this year in and year out and many of these people do not have experience interviewing other people.Berkeley MFE interview process is very chaotic at times. They ask these current students to conduct interviews and this approach is problematic in my opinion. Many of these students are knowledgable but can't speak properly in person, let alone be clear on the phone.
The Berkeley MFE admission will do a big favor in selecting just a few current students/alumni to conduct the interviews who have excellent communication skills and who are able to ask questions correctly, before they put fate of the applicants in the hands of these awful interviewers.
Note to Berkeley MFE: There is very little correlation between someone having good grades and him/her being a good communicator.
Disclaimer: I am not an American/Europe born person. And I have had horrible experience with Berkeley MFE interview process first hand.
Linda Kreitzman flys around the US (and some international locations) conducting MFE information sessions. I don't think it will be too much of a hassle for her to bring together few alumni in locations like New York, LA, Chicago, London, Paris etc. to have in-person interviews for the applicants. Even if it is, Berkeley MFE owes it to the applicants to make the process fair and balanced by removing the very luck-prone factor of phone interviews by current students, many with borderline incomprehensible accents. And I am sure most applicants would not mind spending little extra money to come for an in-person interview. For other international applicants especially from Asia, Berkeley MFE can use Skype, Google Video Chat etc. for interviews.You bring a very good point about the process. While you can color it as "having a thorough, rigorous filtering process by students and alumni of the program", the downside is that you don't have the same group of people to do this year in and year out and many of these people do not have experience interviewing other people.
And if you add language problem and a weak phone signal to the mix, there is a possibility that every candidate would perform much more poorly than had they done in person.
UCB MFE used to have a "record yourself speaking in front of a webcam" requirement in their admission process which they eliminated later. It's a program based off the Haas business school and I'm surprised applicants still complain about the admission process after all these years. It should have been a well-oiled machine by now.
Thanks for sharing your experience with us. It helps everyone learn more about UCB MFE program
First of all, students who are in the waitlist or hold status should contact us directly with questions. Each applicant's situation is unique, and we do want to engage in a dialogue with our applicants. When we ask students in the waitlist or hold status to take courses, read texts, or retake exams, we do this so that the student will be prepared in the event a spot does become available. The Berkeley MFE program is very intensive, and we want to make sure that anyone who joins the program is ready from the first day they are here. We also know from experience and from speaking to candidates on our waitlist that many candidates plan on applying for a future term if they are not admitted this year. If a candidate takes the courses one year, is not admitted, but then is admitted in the following year, the candidate is welcome to retake the courses for free as a refresher.
Contrary to popular belief, we do not ask the waitlisted candidates to take the pre program courses simply to make money. I am not sure where one of the posters got the information that the money goes only to our program, but that statement is false.
In addition, we did not remove the video requirement from the application because we were unhappy with the quality of the 2010 class. We found the process of collecting the videos to be cumbersome, especially since there exists technology (such as skype) that allows us to engage in video chats with candidates in real time.
Two final points: We notify all waitlisted students that there is no guarantee of admission if they complete the steps we ask them to complete. Second, we notify all waitlisted candidates that we keep admissions open until the start of the program in March and that candidates could be notified of a change in status at any time before March.
Again, we want to underscore that concerned applicants should contact the admissions office with questions. This is the best way to obtain information on your status.