Posted on January 14, 2021

Case Study #6: A Success Story– Ross MBA with 100% Scholarship

Pablo_Case Study


Having grown up in a modest neighborhood in Santiago, Chile, Pablo nurtured a dream of going to a college since childhood. Pablo scored the second-highest in his country among 200,000 students in the entrance test required for entering college with a full scholarship from Pontificia Universidad Catolica.  He graduated as an industrial engineer from the university.

Pablo, a non-native speaker, studied hard for his GMAT. Though he was working long hours at that time, he invested several hours a week in English training to build the required proficiency level as an international student and scored a 710 on his first attempt. Through conversations with his managers who had attended US Business schools, Pablo learned the value of an MBA degree in developing the leadership skills needed to succeed in their roles.  After eight years of professional experience, he decided to pursue an MBA to make a career switch from finance to another job to get exposure to a broader range of business problems and different industries. A few days before the Ross deadline, Pablo approached MER to support him for his application to ROSS and MIT. With stringent deadlines to work on résumé and essays, MER worked round the clock to help Pablo present his best self. Pablo was accepted into Ross Michigan with a 100% scholarship.

The present case study traces Pablo's career history, extracurricular activities, career goals, and highlights of our work that led to his success.

Name: Pablo Troncoso

Age: 28

Country: Chile

Academic: Bachelor of Industrial Engineering

Institute: Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Chile

Industry: Industrial Engineering

Work Experience: 8 years

GMAT: 710

Target Schools: Ross and MIT

Work Experience:

Pablo started his career as an analyst in a growing bank. This job allowed him to support his siblings as they advanced in their studies. In 2011, he co-founded a start-up along with his brother. The company generated USD 700,000 in revenues with his advice on negotiations with suppliers and debt. He worked as an Associate in Corporate Development in a diversified conglomerate in Chile before starting his MBA.

In his professional career of eight years, Pablo led the analysis of strategic transactions in twelve industries and worked with diverse professional backgrounds to execute four deals. Additionally, he designed and implemented strategic projects in the manufacturing sector, such as developing a glass products manufacturer's business plan for entering the windows installation market, which added significant revenues in one year. He also mentored new Analysts and independently advised strategic decisions for three small businesses.

Extracurricular Activities:

Pablo co-founded bookseller Jet Libros in 2011, achieving USD 700,000 revenues in 2016. He taught Mathematics for a student-run initiative for underprivileged workers. He volunteered to help younger colleagues and disadvantaged workers overcome hurdles in their start-ups. After a work trip, he developed a keen interest in traveling and discovering new cultures and ways of living. He has traveled to Peru, Ecuador, Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay, and the U.S.

Pablo is a member of the Amateur Chess Club and earned third place in a team-based university chess tournament. He is fluent in three languages- English, Spanish, and Portuguese.

Career Goal:

Pablo's goal after MBA was to become a strategy consultant in a company such as McKinsey, Bain & Co., or BCG, and specialize in the manufacturing industry.  He aimed to develop requisite skills for managing larger organizations, gain a global perspective, and focus on real-world problems.  His long-term goal is to assume a leadership position such as Corporate Developer in a top manufacturing company in Latin America.

MER's Approach:

To gain an in-depth understanding of a candidate's profile, we administer a questionnaire of 20 questions to learn about his background, values, professional career, accomplishments, leadership stories, career goals, extracurricular activities, and interests. However, there was no time to administer the questionnaire in Pablo’s case because he reached out to MER just 72 hours before the deadline. After listening to his personal and professional stories over skype and email, we started working together on his application to showcase his candidacy for his two target business schools - Ross and MIT.

Some of the key highlights of our work together are:

  1. We first evaluated Pablo's profile over skype and email to get a complete picture of his attributes and professional achievements. We decided to highlight his experience as an analyst and a corporate development professional. Our strategy was to showcase his leadership qualities, expertise in mentoring start-ups, and a keen drive to excel.
  2. MER segregated and synchronized the information provided by him for answering the essay questions in line with the mission and values of each business school. We guided him in presenting his candidacy to demonstrate his ‘fit’ with the respective schools' admission criteria.
  3. We always received timely and articulate responses, which helped us in guiding him in that short period. MER provided him a format that made him gain more space to focus on his professional and academic accomplishments.
  4. We gave him explicit directions about format and structure, along with guidelines to 'unleash' stories more compellingly and thoroughly.
  5. Finally, we worked fast, with turnarounds in less than 24 hours. Thus, despite time constraints, we built strong essays and a resume well before each deadline.
  6. Overall, it was a pleasure to assist Pablo with his application. He respected our technical advice and guidance which boosted his confidence and gave him clarity about the committee’s expectations.


Pablo was interviewed by MIT and got admitted to Ross with a full scholarship. Pablo did his summer internship at his dream company Bain & Co. and secured a full-time position as a consultant at the company.

MER's Views:

It was a fantastic experience to work with a focused, accomplished, hard-working, professional like Pablo. We were glad to be a part of the process to help him realize his dream. Given the incredibly stringent timelines, he incorporated our suggestions effectively and reverted quickly with excellent revised drafts. His determination and dedication motivated us to even work on New Year Eve! We feel proud to have been a part of his MBA journey and wish him all the best for his career ahead.

Pablo is not only a diligent and dedicated professional but also a kind, humble, and respectful human being. We would like to mention here that we requested Pablo twice to share his application experience and Ross MBA experience. Despite his hectic schedule, he acceded to our request.

Conversations with Pablo:

Please click here for our conversation with Pablo wherein he shares his application journey and his first-year experiences at Ross.

In the summer of 2020, we again reached out to him to ask about how his overall experience at Ross. In this candid conversation, Pablo discusses how Ross MBA not only helped him switch careers from financial services to consulting but was a life-altering experience in many other ways.

We hope Pablo's experiences and advice will help the prospective candidates with application strategy, planning, and preparation and provide them valuable insights on Michigan Ross business school.

For Pablo's testimonial of MER's Services, click here

Free Resources:

Case Studies

10 Key Essay Tips with Examples

Essay Analysis of Other Top Programs-2020-21

MER Students Share their success Stories

Since 2011, MER (myEssayReview) has helped many applicants get accepted into the top 20 MBA programs. (Poonam is one of the top 5 most reviewed consultants on the GMAT Club.)

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