What Do Presidents of Clubs (<4% Accepted) Want to See In Applicants?
Many wide-eyed freshmen get to college and have high hopes of exploring different fields in business, healthcare, and even technology through the many different clubs – unfortunately, the executives of these groups often times have different plans.
Several clubs at every school, the most "prestigious" organizations, have acceptance rates hovering around 3%; at UCLA, there was an organization that would accept 5 Bruins from a pool of 300+. The other 295 would return to their dorms dismayed by this "rejection", many of whom wouldn't be fortunate enough to join one of the alternate consulting or investment banking clubs. From there, it only becomes increasingly difficult to gain the knowledge necessary to properly recruit in these hyper-competitive industries. One of the primary benefits of these clubs is that they teach their members everything they need to know regarding various recruitment processes and sometimes even assign mentors to help throughout. Students who fail to get in have no alternative (one of the main catalysts that led me to launch MRTCoaching).
So how do you become one of these lucky 5? Unfortunately, I can't explain it all in short blog post, but if you're interested in the specifics, schedule a meeting with me! Instead, I'll go over the general points to focus on:
Before you come to these events and subsequent interviews, spend some time looking through their website, reading about current members, and understanding their goals/motivation
Make sure you go to all events that are open to you – don’t skip one! Show that you’re interested
When you attend the initial events, carry yourself with confidence, but more importantly, with good energy. People want to create a happy and positive culture within a club – at the end of the day, they’re choosing who to bring into their intimate community
It may seem intuitive, but thank the members for taking the time to come out and teach you more about their club. What many people miss, however, is that you should be respectful to other applicants as well. The club members will see how you treat other applicants (I promise you, we see everything), and a cutthroat and rude candidate is not what we're looking for
Often times they'll give you information to study or even supply resources – READ THEM ALL. If you’re being sent materials, you should use them. Spend several hours Googling the industry and reading up on the most-asked questions as well
Demeanor and Respect (again)
In the interview, the same principles from earlier apply: be social, smile, and be respectful of them, but more so, show off the preparation and work that you put into the process. This is the time to mention specifics that you like about the club/industry to convey how much you really care
If you failed, try again!
Many people get in on their second or even third time – don’t be ashamed. It even shows extreme interest if you apply again