In a couple of days, one more semester will start, leading to another semester of accomplishments and mistakes, happiness and sorrows, love and heartbreak. I know I’m looking forward to it! (Not being sarcastic here, I swear)
When the semester ended, I had talked with a couple of freshmen who were anxious and disappointed of how their first semester at Cal turned out. Some didn’t get the grades they wanted. Some decided to switch majors halfway through. Some didn’t find where they belonged.
When I completed my first semester, I pretty much embodied all of these problems. I didn’t meet what I thought would be a “core” group of friends. I thought getting anything below a 4.0 was a terrible GPA (that high school mentality showing). I didn’t really like business or linguistics. I stayed in my dorm a lot, my floor wasn’t social, I didn’t get along with my roommate, and didn’t enjoy my extracurriculars of that semester. I didn’t like what I was doing, didn’t have direction, and didn’t feel like I belonged.
At Berkeley, we have a ton of business related clubs to choose from, and sometimes it’s hard to find a comprehensive list of organizations and their activities! I’m going to try and consolidate all Berkeley organizations by type and emphasis. Beside the club, I will give a general description if it’s not inherently shown, and link them to their website, which will show you an idea of their club culture and what they’ve been up to. Italics are those that are Haas sponsored. Keep in mind that some of these groups may fit into more than one category. Most of these groups also have various committees that provide a chance to work with group promotions, finance, event planning, consulting, leadership and professional development, etc. Check these websites for their events, group culture, and connections if you’re interested! I tried to include as many organizations as I possibly could, I apologize if I forgot a couple. Remember that you don’t have to participate in any one of these clubs if you’d like to apply to Haas; remember your passion!
I’ve talked a lot about passion on this blog, and how it’s like a key to get into Haas. But sometimes, it’s not easy to understand what it means to have a passion and if it’s something you want to pursue: I’m often in that position.
I write this tonight as I take a break from writing code for Computer Science 61A, or Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs, taught through the programming language of Python. This course is the first class for computer science majors, and known for being a notoriously difficult class. As I’m interested in technical recruiting, I wanted to give it a shot this summer, while simultaneously taking on a part-time job (I think of it as a paid internship) in San Francisco, updating the blog, and figuring out a better way to represent my personal website. And boy is this tough. (This relates to Haas! Keep reading!)
There is always a set of assumptions that seem to be pervasive in every applicant’s mind when considering what Haas does and does not accept. Let me tell you something: there’s no set formula. There is no magical amount of internships you need to do, no set GPA, no amount of connections in your non-existent network; nor is there any key position you need to obtain in some business club. There is no perfect candidate. It’s an arbitrary process. In fact, there is literally no key to getting into Haas. Here are some myths, debunked, when you’re thinking about applying to Haas as an undergraduate.
This article will tell you the key to get into Haas. Well guess what. There’s no key. No magical formula, no perfect applicant. Nothing. Sorry to disappoint you.
In the Haas admissions criteria, it states that successful candidates exhibit:
- Academic achievement and promise (including grades, course load, consistency of academic performance, and performance in key prerequisites, such as principles of business, math, economics, and statistics)
- Accomplishments in extracurricular activities
- Personal attributes and life experience suggesting leadership, maturity, ethical character, teamwork, and goal orientation
- Communication and analytical skills, as demonstrated by responses to the essay questions
- Interest in being an active member of the Haas community
[…] the goal of the admissions review process is not only to evaluate an applicant’s ability to handle the academic rigor, but also to identify those who demonstrate a solid fit with our program. The Haas Undergraduate Program has a distinct culture and we seek applicants who represent the School’s Four Defining Principles: Question the Status Quo, Confidence without Attitude, Students Always, and Beyond Yourself.
That’s easy, right? At least Haas gives you what they’re looking for.