I'd like to introduce myself before asking several questions. I'm a financial management officer in the Marine Corps and I'm set to get out in December. I've been doing this job for about three years...prior to this I flew jets (T-45s) for about three years before switching career fields. I'm approaching a juncture in my life and I'm seriously considering the IB field.
My bachelor's degree is in aerospace studies with a triple minor in business, air traffic management, and flight. I have a multi-engine commercial pilot's license. I worked throughout college and (regretfully) didn't put enough effort into studying.
After getting into the Marines I checked in to flight school where I did very well...2nd in the first phase with a 96.5 average, 2nd in the second phase with a 97.4%, made the Commodore's List with Distinction and finished high enough to select whatever I wanted. I selected jets and performed in the high 90s academically throughout. I made it to the last flight of the syllabus before my poor depth perception finally caught up to me. I requested the switch to financial management, spent two years plus a deployment in that field, and here we are in today's world.
I separate in December. I'm actively studying for the GMAT and have every intention of applying this summer for the first round of MBA applications. In an effort to show improvement I enrolled in several undergrad businesses courses while I was deployed. In the two courses I registered for I have a 4.0 GPA. My intent is that by showing consistently high academic performance through flight school and recently, I can offset a lower GPA from undergrad coursework.
Finally, assuming I get into an MBA program for fall 2017, I have December-August to kill. Here's where I need some opinions. Being 29 and behind on the undergrad GPA side without any solid finance experience other than Marine Disbursing, what is the most effective use of my time for those 9 months? Should I seek an internship even though I'm not in school yet? Or should I look for a job at a local branch bank in an effort to get into the industry? Or does someone have another suggestion that might help?
I'm also looking for suggestions on how I can best increase my competitiveness. I understand the challenges ahead but I'm seeking advice on mitigating them with a proactive approach. The problem right now for me is that I don't know what I don't know, and I'm short on ideas for the best use of my time and limited resources.