MIT Sloan MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines [2020-2021]

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MIT Sloan MBA application essay tips and deadlines

This year’s MIT Sloan MBA application, like most MIT applications in the last fifteen years, includes its signature cover letter and resume. It also retains the video component.

MIT Sloan MBA cover letter and resume

MIT Sloan seeks students whose personal characteristics demonstrate that they will make the most of the incredible opportunities at MIT, both academic and non-academic. We are on a quest to find those whose presence will enhance the experience of other students. We seek thoughtful leaders with exceptional intellectual abilities and the drive and determination to put their stamp on the world. We welcome people who are independent, authentic, and fearlessly creative – true doers. We want people who can redefine solutions to conventional problems, and strive to preempt unconventional dilemmas with cutting-edge ideas. We demand integrity and respect passion.

Taking the above into consideration, please submit a cover letter seeking a place in the MIT Sloan MBA Program. Your letter should conform to a standard business correspondence, include one or more examples that illustrate why you meet the desired criteria above, and be addressed to the Assistant Deans of Admissions, Rod Garcia and Dawna Levenson. (300 words or fewer, excluding address and salutation)

MIT helpfully provides insight into what it’s looking for in the cover letter. Like all cover letters, this one is a marketing document. If you apply for a job, you research the firm to learn what it values and is seeking. Based on your research, you send your resume with a cover letter designed to make you as attractive to the company as possible, one that shows you have what the firm wants.

Similarly, your MIT Sloan cover letter should show that you have what MIT is looking for. Make your case for admission using your accomplishments, specifically those where you show the qualities mentioned above. How do the talents revealed in your examples demonstrate fit with the MIT Sloan program, its tight-knit community, and its innovative, culture of doers? Your resume should reveal above-average progression on the job and increasing responsibility, as well as the creativity and contribution that MIT Sloan requires.

In making your case and mentioning your accomplishments, highlight your role and the impact on the entities you contributed to. Those results are “your stamp on the world” so far.

Note: this is not an essay. Make sure your letter is formatted as a professional letter with a date, address, header, salutation, and close.

Please submit a one-page resume (Times New Roman 10 point font preferred) that includes your employment history and academic record in reverse chronological order. Other information appropriate to a business resume is welcomed and encouraged, including extracurricular activities, awards, and achievements. Please REDACT your name, address, and contact information. For formatting purposes, please list the information in the following order:

  • Education – please feel free to include relevant awards, scholarships, professional societies
  • Work Experience – please list in reverse chronological order and include: company name, title, results-oriented bullets that demonstrate your skill set, and dates.
  • Additional information – languages, extracurricular activities/community service, technical skills/certifications, special skills/interests (if appropriate)

For the MIT Sloan’s detailed resume formatting instructions, visit the MIT Sloan website.

In your resume, go beyond mere job descriptions to highlight achievement. If your title is “consultant,” saying that you “consulted on diverse projects globally” is redundant and uninformative at best. Writing that you “Led a 6-member team working on a biotech outsourcing project to Singapore with a budget of $X; it came in on time and under budget.” conveys infinitely more.

Quantify your impact as much as possible. You want the reader to come away with a picture of you as an above average performer on a steep upward trajectory who has the creativity and hands-on, problem-solving focus that demonstrates you belong at MIT Sloan.

<<Applying to MIT Sloan? Listen to our podcast interview with the Director of Admissions>>

MIT Sloan MBA video statement

Please take a minute to introduce yourself to your future classmates via video. Include a bit on your past experience and why MIT Sloan is the best place for you to pursue your MBA. Videos should be a single take (no editing) lasting no more than one minute and consisting of you speaking directly to the camera. We recommend using an application such as QuickTime or iMovie to record yourself.

Upload the video file according to the detailed instructions within the application. We support the following file formats: .avi, .flv, .m1v, .m2v, .m4v, .mkv, .mov, .mpeg, .mpg, .mp4, .webm, .wmv.

Should you experience difficulties uploading your file, please ensure that you’re using a modern web browser (Chrome, Firefox, or Safari) on the fastest wired Internet connection available. An intermittent or slow Internet connection can cause uploads to timeout.

The video statement was introduced at MIT Sloan about four years ago. Your goal here: deliver your statement with poise and presence. I suggest you outline a 60-second statement that you would use to introduce yourself to your classmates (not the admissions committee members; they’re just important flies on the wall who happen to be listening in).

Don’t be too casual; your classmates are your future professional network and social group, but do be friendly and remember to smile. What would you tell them about yourself? What would show that you are already a member of MIT’s community – you just don’t happen to pay tuition yet?

A few tips for the video part of this exercise: Practice in front of a webcam so that you get used to talking to a little lens that has no affect, feedback, or expression. Recording yourself on video is not the same as talking on Skype with another human being. I suggest you put a smiley face beneath or above the camera to remind you to smile at appropriate points in your statement. Then view your practice videos looking for poise and presence. During some of the practices, maybe have a friend present to encourage you, but also practice without anyone else in the room. We at Accepted are happy to help you prepare too.

For the real statement, dress in business or business casual attire. If you’re not confident that your attire is appropriate, it probably isn’t; dress more conservatively. Make sure your location is quiet and that roommates, pets and children are in a location where they won’t be heard or disturb you. Make sure your background is neutral and not a distraction. Blank walls make a great background.

For expert guidance with your MIT Sloan MBA application, check out Accepted’s MBA Application Packages, which include comprehensive guidance from an experienced admissions consultant. We’ve helped applicants get accepted to MIT Sloan’s MBA program and look forward to helping you too!


MIT Sloan application deadlines for August 2021 entry

Application DeadlineDecisions Released
Round 1October 1, 2020December 16, 2020
Round 2January 19, 2021April 2, 2021
Round 3April 12, 2021May 20, 2021

*Applications must be submitted by 3:00 p.m. EST

Source: MIT Sloan website

Stay on top of MBA deadlines with the MBA Admissions Calendar!

[Click here to add the calendar to your Google calendar; or here to add the calendar to another app.]

***Disclaimer: Information is subject to change. Please check with individual programs to verify the essay questions, instructions and deadlines.***

Listen to MIT Sloan questions answered by the MIT Sloan admissions team in this AMA. Watch now!
by Linda Abraham, Accepted Founder

By Linda Abraham, president and founder of Accepted. Linda earned her bachelors and MBA at UCLA, and has been advising applicants since 1994 when she founded Accepted. Linda is the co-founder and first president of AIGAC. She has written or co-authored 13 e-books on the admissions process, and has been quoted by The Wall Street JournalU.S. NewsPoets & QuantsBloomberg BusinessweekCBS News, and others. Linda is the host of Admissions Straight Talk, a podcast for graduate school applicants. Want an admissions expert help you get accepted? Click here to get in touch!

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