How to become a part of a business school community: application essay topics. MBA.  

How to become a part of a business school community: application essay topics

GMAT scores, undergraduate transcripts, MBA CVs and letters of recommendation highlight professional achievements of the students and their potential leadership as well as the application essays. But for the majority of students tackling application essays for business schools is considered to be a real obstacle and ordeal.

Your application can be read by a tired administrator who has already checked hundreds of files that day and your task is to keep his attention by means of your well-structured and thought-out application essay. Before you write the first word, you should think deeply about some fundamental questions such as “What are your professional strong and weak points?”, “Why MBA is so important for your career?”, “What are you going to do in five years and in ten years after MBA graduation?” and so on.

Remember, the authenticity is essential. Every attempt to pose yourself as something you are not will be sensed by experienced admission officers and they will trust you less as a result. Business schools want to understand what is special and unique about you. Don’t tell a lie. There are six common themes in the essay questions that business schools can ask:

1. Why have you decided to join to an MBA at this moment in your career?

Take into account the business school’s perspective. You should understand that it needs ambitious and active students who can get the maximum value out of their MBA program and achieve great things in their life. That’s why in this type of essay you must persuade an administrator that the MBA is essential for you to achieve your dreams, to enhance your CV and enable you to move on.

2. Why this MBA in particular?

Preparing the applications for different business schools do not copy sentences from one MBA essay to another. Every school prefers students who like it in particular, who realize what makes it unique and who are able to convince that it fits for them most of all. It’s difficult to write an MBA essay of high quality if you are not familiar with the peculiarities and distinctive features of the business school as well as its spirit and other intimate things. A lot of students turn to general facts because of insufficient and poor knowledge about the school. That’s why we strongly recommend you to be prepared by means of surfing the internet, reading brochures, student blogs and MBA online resources, contacting alumni or even visiting campus. Attending courses that you like is not enough.

3. What is your own contribution to student and MBA alumni community of the school?

The business school chooses the candidates who take an active part in debates and polemics not only within the walls of a lecture room; who will become activists and give benefits for the humanity in the near future. Write some lines about what the business school will mean for you and for the community of which you are going to be a part.

Some schools believe that the MBA alumni network is their pride and manpower resources. They engage students and alumni to the MBA admission process and propose them, for example, to be file readers, interviewers or members of the admissions committee. There is the possibility that someone from the alumni network can check your application and he or she will estimate you taking into account principal questions such as “Would I want this person as a member of my team?”, “Do I want this person in my alumni network?”. Your task in this case is to show that you are full of knowledge in different fields and ready to share your experience with others drawing a parallel with the experience and contribution at your previous school.


4. Career vision for future

Admissions directors say that the applicants’ plans of what they are going to do after graduating from the business school don’t coincide with what they end up doing in fact. But this fact is quite normal as the MBA aims to broaden your horizons and give you more possibilities. Consequently, if your vision is likely to change, the fact that you will be able to express a reasonable vision provided with evidences is accepted.

5. Your beliefs VS values of the school

Some students cannot manifest themselves properly because of a cultural mismatch with the institution. Every business school has its own identity: some of them have a more competitive spirit; some are collaborative communities; at some you can find many foreigners; at others there may be cultural rules that differ from your own beliefs and rules. That is why you should visit the business school and try to feel its atmosphere before you get in. Remember, you should show that you are well-informed about spiritual environment of the school and persuade the admissions officers that you like all values of this school in particular.

6. Your strong and weak points

Regarding strong points, you should highlight your best distinguishing features that make you a unique person and distinguish you among other applicants. Your task is also to lay stress on the fact that you are the best MBA candidate that they are looking for. Provide your MBA essay with ample proofs and vivid evidence and show that you possess all necessary skills and acquired habits that can give you advantage and good impetus to be an undisputed leader in your future career. The admissions officers like the application essays that include the examples on students’ recent problems, challenges or obstacles that have been successfully resolved and overcame.

As for the description of your weak points, they should correspond to your true nature. Be honest. You must not describe yourself as a perfectionist or an ideal person without flaws. Instead, demonstrate your willingness and readiness to eradicate your weaknesses and ensure that you are working on this. Remember, what you have learned from the experience is highly evaluated in the application essays.

So, the above mentioned types of the MBA application essays that are frequently used by the admissions officers of business schools can help you to persuade a reader that you are a right choice because you are all-rounded, keen-witted, sharp, intelligent and active person who knows what he/she wants in this life. You should tackle your essay in such a way that the admissions officers will take an interest in you and want to know more about you and invite you for an MBA interview as a result.


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Author: Victoria Dudka, MBA Strategy Consultants Team Lead

MBA Admissions Consulting Services


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