UT McCombs 2014 MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines
McCombs combines its rigor with a passionate community. To create its desired community, it seeks a student body that is diverse in every dimension and comprises individuals who can bring their varied voices to form a cohesive group. The questions below reflect this value; they draw out applicants’ individuality and also their potential to collaborate.
1. Imagine that you are at the Texas MBA Orientation for the Class of 2016. Please introduce yourself to your new classmates, and include any personal and/or professional aspects that you believe to be significant. Select only one communication method that you would like to use for your response.
Write an essay (250 words)
First, choose from the three options – for the purpose of self-introduction, which medium is most natural for you? That is the one you should use. Next decision: what to say? I suggest a combination of distinctive professional and non-work points to reflect well-roundedness – points that show the adcom what you’ll “bring to the table.” Another effective approach is to focus on one key thing, if that one thing bridges your work and non-work spheres. All three media require brevity, so present at most a few key items.
You can view this essay as an extension of the discussion started with the introduction essay. Identify and discuss 2-4 specific ways you consider yourself to fit with the program’s culture, backed up with brief examples. Discuss also actions you’ll take as a student that align with the defined culture (these may overlap with the “fit” point), and note the impacts you’d like those actions/activities to have.
3. What do you hope to gain from your Texas MBA experience? How do you expect to develop, both personally and professionally, during the Texas MBA program? (250 words)
This is a rather oblique goals essay (presumably you’re pursuing an MBA to gain skills and knowledge for a given career path). However, considering the question’s wording, don’t just write about career. Also discuss non-career-related benefits of the program you envision. Weave your prospective personal and professional gains into a desired growth trajectory – this question reveals the adcom’s interest in the program developing the whole, dynamic person, not just providing a bunch of tools you’ll apply at work.
Optional Essay: Please provide any additional information to the Admissions Committee that you believe is important and/or will address any areas of concern that will be beneficial to the Admissions Committee in considering your application. (200 words) For example, if your standardized test scores are not exactly what you would like them to be or if you have not had coursework in core business subjects (i.e. calculus, microeconomics, statistics, financial accounting, or finance), please tell us how you plan to prepare yourself for the quantitative rigor of the MBA curriculum. Discuss any unexplained gaps in work experience, choice of recommenders, academic performance, or any significant weaknesses in your application or extenuating personal circumstances that you think may impact your candidacy.
I encourage you to write the optional essay. Just make sure you are submitting an informative optional essay that complements the required essays and adds to the reader’s knowledge of you and your qualifications. If you do not have “an area of concern to address,” this optional would be a great place to explore in depth a non-professional interest or commitment of yours not addressed in your application. As always, if you have nothing to say, don’t say anything.
If you would like professional guidance with your UT McCombs MBA application, please consider Accepted’s MBA essay editing and MBA admissions consulting or our MBA Application Packages, which include advising, editing, interview coaching, and a resume edit for the UT McCombs application.
By Cindy Tokumitsu, co-author of The Finance Professional’s Guide to MBA Admissions Success, and author of numerous ebooks, articles, and special reports. Cindy has advised hundreds of successful applicants in her last fifteen years with Accepted.com.
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This article originally appeared on the Accepted Admissions Consulting Blog, the official blog of Accepted.com.