Section 4: The Application Itself
from How to get into a Top-15 MBA Program by Tim Darling
Don't spend so much time on your essays that you overlook the actual application form itself.
- Admissions committees want applicants who work long hard days at a career, come home and work on their
own business at night, volunteer one night a week, and are engaged in a few activities on the weekends.
MBA programs can require 12-15 hours a day and they want students who actively seek out filling their
schedules that much and more.
- The section on your work experience should show growth, a solid amount of work in a particular and relevant field,
and should include specifics. If you have a good résumé prepared, take some of the wording from it!
From the 'Résumé' page on this site:
"Say if you were promoted. Say if you moved from a team member to a team leader.
It's better to say you started out small and grow than to 'pretend' you started at the top."
- When entering your work experience, go into much more detail with
separate entries for each position you had within a company and the
number of places that you have worked. In your résumé, you only
have 1 page so you have to abbreviate as necessary. With the application,
you can enter as much as you like- more may be better, in fact, as long
as your résumé remains 1 page.
- They will read the activities and previous work experience you put on your application! So
you don't need to write it again in your essays. Of course a couple things you will want to tell some
stories about and go into more detail, but many things will be just fine listed on the application and not mentioned
in your essays. Don't inundate the reader with lists of things in your essays to show how much you've done -- let
the application itself and your résumé do that.
Mention that you are applying to 2 or 3 other schools if the application asks you.
List schools that are
similar to their school (don't lie of course). You can leave out a school or 2 from the list.
Don't say you are only applying to just their school (it makes you look like you're not serious
about attending an MBA program).
- Don't say you are applying to 5 or more schools (it makes you look like you don't have a good plan or confidence).
Section 5: Interviews, Campus Visits, and Recommendations
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All text and pictures copyright © 2005-2006 Tim Darling.