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Expert advice for McCombs from Admissions Consultant blogs

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Expert advice for McCombs from Admissions Consultant blogs  [#permalink]

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New post 25 Jul 2017, 07:59
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The McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas is a globally recognized MBA program, located in the center of technology- Austin.

MBA Application Deadlines:

Round 1:

Application deadline: October 10, 2017 at 11:59pm CT,

Priority deadline for scholarships & fellowships

Decision date: December 19, 2017

Round 2:

Application deadline: January 9, 2018 at 11:59pm CT,

Decision date: March 19, 2018

Round 3:

Final application deadline: April 3, 2017 at 11:59pm CT,

Decision date: May 11, 2018

Application Essays

Like last year, McCombs business school asks its applicants to write two required essays and one optional essay. The first essay remains unchanged from last year, but the second essay has been changed.

Essay 1: The University of Texas at Austin values unique perspectives and cultivates a collaborative environment of distinct individual contributions. It is the first day of orientation. You are meeting your study group, comprised of five of your classmates from various backgrounds. Please introduce yourself to your new team, highlighting what drives you in your personal and professional life.

Select only one communication method that you would like to use for your response.
  • Write an essay (250 words)
  • Share a video introduction (one minute)

This is the fifth year running that McCombs requires the applicants to write an essay on introduction to their class mates. McCombs allows them to delve on their personal as well as professional attributes in 250 words.  This essay, in terms of the topic and the medium of communication, provides applicants with a flexibility and freedom to showcase their creative side. You may take time to brainstorm ideas about what you would like your team mates at McCombs to know about you. Considering this is your first encounter with them, you can discuss your cultural background, motivation, personal and professional goals/accomplishments, hobbies/interests, and issues that pique your interest. The motive is to tell you future class mates who you really are.

To showcase your creativity, McCombs offers you a choice of two modes of communication. You may pick the format that works best for you.  If you are an introvert, or if you love to write, you may select the ‘essay mode’ for sure. If you are an extrovert, you may find the video mode more exciting. A video essay allows applicants to be more creative as well as imaginative. For example, if you plan to share your culinary skills with your class mates, you may consider shooting part of the one minute video in your kitchen.

Though it’s fun doing a video essay, it is my understanding that it would demand more time than a regular essay (This by no means implies that crafting an ‘introduction’ essay in 250 words is not challenging). You may experiment with the video option if you can invest significant amount of time to make sure that you grab the attention of your audience not only through your words, but also through your body language and facial expressions.  And remember your challenge is to say it all in a one minute video.  Also, if you are camera shy and don’t feel comfortable before the camera, then video option may not be a good option. Whichever medium you choose, dedicate the work necessary to ensure that your introduction is engaging and presents you as a likeable, friendly, and well-rounded individual to your cohorts.

Essay 2:  Picture yourself at graduation. Describe how you spent your two years as a Texas MBA student, and how that experience helped to prepare you for the post-MBA world. (500 words)

This second required question has been changed this year. Last year’s applicants were asked to write about what drove them in their personal and professional life, how Texas MBA is the ideal program for them and how they planned to engage in McCombs community. The key was to demonstrate their ‘fit ‘with the school. This year’s applicants will also be highlighting their ‘fit’ with the school, but in a different way. They will visualize themselves at their graduation day and explain how two years at the Texas MBA helped prepare them for their post MBA personal and professional goals.

To prepare yourself, you must do your homework of researching the program well. Explain how various resources/ offerings and activities at McCombs (courses, study groups, clubs etc.) brought you closer to your post MBA goals. In addition to explaining how Texas MBA helped you fulfill your professional goals, you should also discuss how participation in various activities of student organizations and clubs at McCombs contributed to your personal growth. Additionally, you may also comment on your experiences of being a part of the city of Austin. Wrap up your essay with your final thoughts on your overall experience at McCombs.

Optional Statement:

Please provide any additional information you believe is important and/ or address any areas of concern that will be beneficial to the Admissions Committee in considering your application (e.g. unexplained gaps in work experience, choice of recommenders, academic performance, significant weaknesses in your application, or extenuating personal circumstances). (250 words)

An optional essay is an opportunity for you to give the Ad Com relevant information that you could not provide in other parts of your application other essays and résumé. For example, if you have a lower than average GMAT score, any grades below a C on your transcript, academic probation or a significant employment gap, you can explain in this essay.  To provide context for a weakness in your profile, make sure your reason is genuine to convince the Admission committee that your low grades or employment gap occurred due to unforeseen circumstances beyond your control. Your response should be positive, straightforward, and fact-focused and should not sound like you are making excuses for a weakness in your profile.

Also, if you cannot get your recommendation letter from your current supervisor, please explain that in the optional statement. For more information on the choice of recommenders for your McCombs application, please visit admission blog.

myEssayReview has helped many applicants get accepted into McCombs School of Business. You may email Poonam at myessayreview.com">poonam@myessayreview.com with questions about your application for McCombs School of Business.

You may be interested in previous years’ essay questions analysis:

UT Austin McCombs Essay Questions Analysis 2016-17

UT Austin McCombs Essay Questions Analysis 2015-16

UT Austin McCombs Essay Questions Analysis 2014-15

This post was first published in myEssayReview blog.

 Web /Blog/ Free resources/LinkedIn/ Facebook/

 

 

 
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Re: Expert advice for McCombs from Admissions Consultant blogs  [#permalink]

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New post 31 Jul 2017, 10:24
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The UT McCombs School of Business is a globally recognized MBA program, located in Austin, Texas, a center of technology and business for the region.

When approaching these essay questions think about the reasons you are pursuing an MBA, particularly at McCombs. Thorough school research will help you come up with specifics, by taking to current or former students, visiting campus, or attending admissions events.

Stacey Kammerdiener, Senior Texas Full-Time MBA Admissions Officer advises, “While it may be tempting, do us (and yourself) a favor and avoid the snooze-fest/shock-factor extremes. Instead, approach your essays genuinely and with reflection.” More advice can be found at the Texas MBA Insider blog.

ESSAY ONE
Introduce yourself.
Select only one communication method that you would like to use for your response.


• Write an essay (250 words), OR
• Share a video introduction (one minute)


For an open-ended essay with a creative option (the video) it can be daunting to think of a topic. Rather than focusing on how you are going to communicate, start thinking about what you want to communicate to the Texas MBA admissions committee by introducing yourself to your new study group.

The best essays will dive deep into your motivations and aspirations, perhaps getting into your cultural background, formative moments in your life and friends, family and colleagues who have influenced you. To identify one or two key stories you may want to tell, think about those pivotal moments of change in your life.

For many people the transition from high school to college and from college to work led to personal change. Others had formative childhood experiences or experiences that led to shifts in perspective like travel or living outside your home country. Any one of these moments could be a good way to illustrate who you are and what motivates you.

Once you have identified the content of your essay you can decide how to present it. A video could give you the opportunity to add elements of emotion, such as humor, that are harder to convey in writing. A video also allows you to include graphics, photos or other visual elements. If your story fits better into a written narrative you may choose the written essay instead.

If you choose a video essay you will still want to write a script for your video. Think about the bullet points you want to cover, and any important points you need to convey. If you decide to talk into the camera, rehearsing will be especially important, and consider having a friend or family member there so you can talk to a person instead of the camera. If you are able to edit the video after you record footage it will be easier to keep it smooth and on topic. Either way, make sure you take the time to record several takes of the video content so you can choose the best one to submit to McCombs.

ESSAY TWO
Picture yourself at graduation. Describe how you spent your two years as a Texas MBA student, and how that experience helped to prepare you for the post-MBA world. (500 words)

This essay is your opportunity to demonstrate strong fit with the Texas MBA program. As part of your homework before starting this set of essays you have hopefully learned as much as possible about the school, now you can bring in your own aspirations and goals. Use your imagination to think about how you might describe your MBA experience at graduation. You’ll likely have experienced both professional and personal growth, and met interesting people who will be part of your lifelong network.

To help you get started, research some of the unique opportunities at McCombs like the Venture Labs, if you have entrepreneurial dreams, and The MBA+ Program, with opportunities to work with influential companies through a variety of touch points. Being part of the city of Austin is another unique benefit to the program that you may want to consider in the context of your background and goals.

For example, perhaps you were interested in working for a major technology firm to learn product manager skills to use in starting your own business. While at McCombs you might have tested ideas with the Venture Labs, and also consulted for major companies like Adobe or HP to learn how large companies worked. These experiences were likely formative as you made career plans.

Don’t forget the personal – McCombs has an active and engaged student culture with many student organizations you likely joined. And your classmates and friends you made in the program were definitely an influence as well.

OPTIONAL STATEMENT
Please provide any additional information you believe is important and/or address any areas of concern that will be beneficial to the Admissions Committee in considering your application (e.g. unexplained gaps in work experience, choice of recommenders, academic performance, or extenuating personal circumstances). (250 words)

This optional essay provides space for you to add your own context to any information that should be explained to the admissions committee. For example, if you have a lower than average test score, any grades below a C on your transcript, academic probation or a significant resume gap, you can explain here. Keep your explanation concise and factual, and focused on context for the issue rather than excuses.

Stacy Blackman Consulting can provide personalized, strategic guidance for your Texas MBA application. Contact us to learn more.
***

If you are looking for guidance on your MBA application, Stacy Blackman Consulting can help with hourly and comprehensive consulting services. Contact us to learn more. Visit the website for Stacy Blackman Reviews, and check out the company’s e-publications for more in depth school-by-school guidance.

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New post 28 Feb 2018, 16:38
The UT McCombs School of Business is celebrating the long-anticipated grand opening of Robert B. Rowling Hall, its new 497,500-square-foot graduate business education center. Rowling Hall will house the Texas McCombs MBA and M.S. in Technology Commercialization programs.

According to a statement accompanying the opening of its new graduate business facility, Texas McCombs will lead future generations, and influence “…how business leaders will think and behave in a future that is volatile, unknown, and brimming with opportunity.”

The facility is also home to the Jon Brumley Texas Venture Labs, the John C. Goff Labs, and the Center for Leadership and Ethics, as well as being a site for Texas Executive Education classes and programs.

Rowling Hall will serve as a hub for graduate students to meet with peers, faculty members, recruiters and members of the building community to openly exchange ideas, network and work in teams.

The building will also double the space available for Texas Executive Education programs and, in conjunction with the AT&T Education and Conference Center, increase the convention and conference activities at the university.

A gift of $25 million from Bob Rowling, McCombs alumnus and former regent,  launched the campaign to fund the construction of the building, which broke ground in 2014.
***

If you are looking for guidance on your MBA application, Stacy Blackman Consulting can help with hourly and comprehensive consulting services. Contact us to learn more. Visit the website for Stacy Blackman Reviews, and check out the company’s e-publications for more in depth school-by-school guidance.
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New post 31 May 2018, 13:14
Having the opportunity to learn from the best and brightest minds in business is one of the top motivators for many applicants considering an MBA degree at an elite business school. The professors and lecturers you’ll encounter have worked in the trenches, and bring an incredible wealth of real-world experiences into the classroom setting.

In our new limited series of professor interviews on the SBC blog, readers will get to know a bit more about these brilliant academics, what fields most excite them, the trends they foresee, what they enjoy most about teaching at their respective universities, and how it all comes together with their students.

Image
Today, let’s get to know Professor Meeta Kothare, who teaches Financial Innovation for Social Impact and Impact Investing at the University of Texas Lyndon B Johnson School of Public Policy.

Kothare is also leading the new Social Innovation Initiative at UT McCombs School of Business.

She is the founder and president of Neeva Solutions, a management consulting firm assisting organizations dedicated to social impact.
What triggered your interest in your subject matter?
After teaching corporate finance and investment banking classes for several years, I switched gears and worked in the social sector for a decade, first with a philanthropic organization and then as a consultant to nonprofits and social entrepreneurs.

My passion for social impact combined with my love of finance drove my attention to the nascent field of impact investing. I started teaching again, but this time it was impact investing and social entrepreneurship instead of traditional finance.
What’s changed since you entered the field?
Discussions of the role of business in society have changed considerably since I first started in finance. Sustainable and impact investing are making their way into the mainstream. Scholars and practitioners have begun to question whether the brand of capitalism that was practiced in the past fifty years is sufficient to deal with 21st century challenges such as extreme social inequity and climate change.

Companies are paying greater attention to the effects of social and environmental issues on their profitability. On the demand side, younger generations of investors are more engaged in these issues and consequently, asset managers are increasingly investing according to ESG (environmental, social, and governance) principles.
Any surprising or unique applications of your field of study?
Because so much of social innovation, whether it is impact investing or social entrepreneurship or corporate sustainability, requires collaboration among private, public, and nonprofit sectors, studying these areas is giving our students a range of skills and the ability to think about a problem from different perspectives outside the silo of business education.

I’ve had students tell me that even when they’ve interviewed for conventional corporate or consulting jobs, they’ve found themselves depending on the reasoning they’ve developed during our class discussions.

I’m not surprised when I hear that because in my classes and our programs, students learn how to make change happen, develop empathy for consumers, and co-create solutions with diverse communities, skills that you can apply to any work you are doing.
What do you like about the school you are teaching at?
The McCombs school embodies the culture of Austin – a unique camaraderie among students, a social consciousness that is part of the city, and a willingness to work together toward our mutual goals. I also have tremendous support to experiment and figure out what works in the new Social Innovation Initiative that I lead.
What can you do in the classroom to best prepare students for the real world?
There are two parts to that process: The first and obvious one is to give students a rigorous course that helps them develop a certain level of expertise in the subject. The other part is harder.

How do we prepare students for a real world that is ever-changing and more diverse than anything they can experience in the classroom? How do we teach them how to react when faced with tough professional and personal choices, successes and failures? I try different things.

I look for outside speakers who are experts in the subject matter, but who can also speak to these ambiguities and how they handled them. I weave in these topics in class discussions, cases and projects as much as I can. I try to create an environment in the classroom that puts the onus of learning on the student, respects diverse voices, challenges students to look beyond the easy answers and develop confidence in their ability to make change happen and bring others along on that journey.
What are you most excited about that’s happening in your field?
Technology is upending every field, not least of which is finance, but what excites me the most is the tremendous growth in ESG investing in the past couple of years has been exciting.

This January, we witnessed a defining moment on Wall Street when Larry Fink, CEO of Blackrock, the world’s largest asset management firm, wrote a letter to CEOs saying that Blackrock expects companies to make a positive contribution to society in addition to producing financial returns.

In the letter, he also states that companies must benefit all stakeholders, not just shareholders. How this translates to action for Blackrock or the companies in which it invests remains to be seen, but the winds are definitely shifting away from the kind of capitalism that we’ve seen for several decades now.
Can you speak to interesting trends in your field?
All around the world, companies are beginning to pay attention to their social and environmental impacts. Several factors are driving these changes. Surveys show that over 75% of millennials are integrating social and environmental consequences into their consumption, employment, and investment decisions.

Around $40 trillion of wealth will transfer to this generation over the next three decades and we are already seeing some of the shift toward more sustainable investing. A quarter of managed assets around the world are invested with ESG (environmental, social, and governance) considerations, and this number is growing.

We are also seeing a growth in investments directly into social purpose businesses, commonly referred to as impact investing as more philanthropists and conscious investors find that a financial return, at or below market, allows them to extend their support of social enterprises.

Around 36 states now allow companies to incorporate as Benefit Corporations which means that their social and environmental missions are baked into their charter, making it easier to protect their missions legally.
What are you most excited about in your classroom?
Because of the content, my classes naturally tap into the desire of this generation to find purposeful lives and careers. I love their fierce idealism and even after teaching for so many years, fresh ideas from new students and new generations never ceases to enlighten me.
Any business predictions for 2068?
I’m optimistic about humankind’s capacity to innovate and adapt, so I’m going to bet that a new sustainable, regenerative form of capitalism will emerge that that will restore and replenish more than we extract from our society and planet.

Thank you so much Professor Kothare for sharing your insights and experiences with our readers! You can read more about her work in South by Social: Austin is the capital of impact entrepreneurship, too and Women lead second wave of giving sparked by Impact Austin experiences.
***

If you are looking for guidance on your MBA application, Stacy Blackman Consulting can help with hourly and comprehensive consulting services. Contact us to learn more. Visit the website for Stacy Blackman Reviews, and check out the company’s e-publications for more in depth school-by-school guidance.
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New post 29 Jun 2018, 15:58
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The UT McCombs School of Business has posted the following MBA application deadlines for the 2018-19 admissions cycle.
Round 1 
Application due: October 9, 2018
Decision released: December 18, 2018
Round 2
Application due: January 8, 2019
Decision released: March 28, 2019
Round 3
Application due: April 2, 2019
Decision released: May 9, 2019

Applications are due no later than 11:59 p.m. CST on the day of the deadline. Applicants should note that Round 1 is the priority deadline for scholarships and fellowships at the Texas MBA program. For additional information on applying, please visit the Texas MBA admissions website.
***

If you are looking for guidance on your MBA application, Stacy Blackman Consulting can help with hourly and comprehensive consulting services. Contact us to learn more. Visit the website for Stacy Blackman Reviews, and check out the company’s e-publications for more in depth school-by-school guidance.
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Re: Expert advice for McCombs from Admissions Consultant blogs  [#permalink]

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New post 26 Jul 2018, 12:03
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The McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas is a globally recognized MBA program, located in the center of technology- Austin. Its collaborative community is comprised of students who bring together their diverse voices to form a cohesive group.

MBA Application Deadlines:

Round 1 

Application due: October 9, 2018
Decision released: December 18, 2018

Round 2

Application due: January 8, 2019
Decision released: March 28, 2019

Round 3

Application due: April 2, 2019
Decision released: May 9, 2019

Applications are due no later than 11:59 p.m. CST on the day of the deadline.

Application Essays

The MBA essay questions for the 2018-2019 admissions season remain unchanged from the previous cycle. Like last year, McCombs business school asks its applicants to write two required essays that seek to draw out applicants’ individuality, motivations, and ability to collaborate, while also asking them what their career goals are and how they are seeking to achieve them at McCombs.

Stacey Kammerdiener, Senior Full-Time MBA Admissions Officer, offers her advice  in MBA Insider tips

“Your best chance at successfully answering  this year’s Full-Time MBA application essays comes from approaching them thoughtfully. The purpose of these essays is to understand why you want to attend Texas McCombs, and to learn more about you as an individual.  With a genuine goal of authenticity and the tips below, you will be well on your way to submitting a strong application.”

Let’s take a closer look at the essay questions:

Essay 1: We will learn a lot about your professional background through your resume and letter of recommendation. We want to get to know you further. Please introduce yourself. Select only one communication method you would like to use for your response.

Select only one communication method that you would like to use for your response.
  • Write an essay (250 words)
  • Share a video introduction (one minute)

This is the 6th year running that McCombs requires the applicants to write an introduction essay. McCombs asks them to delve on their personal as well as professional attributes in 250 words. This essay, in terms of the topic and the medium of communication, provides applicants with a flexibility and freedom to showcase their creative side. You may take time to brainstorm ideas about what would you like your team mates at McCombs to know about you. You can discuss your cultural background, motivation, personal and professional goals, hobbies/interest, and issues that pique your interest. The motive is to tell them who you really are. Please don’t forget the first sentence of the essay prompt “We will learn a lot about your professional background through your resume and letter of recommendation. We want to get to know you further.”

To showcase your creativity, McCombs offers you a choice of two modes of communication. You may pick the format that works best for you. If you are an introvert, and/or if you love to write, you may select the ‘essay mode’ for sure (Most people I worked with opted for the essay option). If you are an extrovert, you may find the video mode more exciting. A video essay allows applicants to be more creative as well as imaginative. For example, if you plan to share your culinary skills with your class mates, you may consider shooting part of the one-minute video in your kitchen.

Though it’s fun doing a video essay, it is my understanding that it would demand more time than a regular essay (This by no means implies that crafting an ‘introduction’ essay of 250 words is not challenging). You may experiment with the video option if you can invest significant amount of time in practicing and rehearsing for the video to grab the attention of your audience not only through your words, but also through your body language and facial expressions. Don’t forget to add some humor to it. And remember, your challenge is to say it all in 60 seconds only. But if you are not confident of showing your dynamic personality in a one- minute video, then video may not be a good option. Whichever medium you choose, dedicate the work necessary to ensure that your introduction is engaging and presents you as a likeable, friendly, and well-rounded individual .

Essay 2: Picture yourself at graduation. Describe how you spent your two years as a Texas MBA student, and how that experience helped to prepare you for the post-MBA world. (500 words)

The key to this essay is to demonstrate your ‘fit’ with the school. Instead of explaining how McCombs MBA program will help you achieve your goals, you  need to look ahead and visualize yourself  at your  graduation day and explain how two years at the Texas MBA helped prepare you  for your  post MBA personal and professional goals.

To prepare yourself, you must do your homework of researching the program well. Explain how various resources/ offerings and activities at McCombs (courses, study groups, clubs etc.) brought you closer to your post MBA goals. Also, you should discuss how participation in various activities of student organizations and clubs at McCombs contributed to your personal growth and in what ways you made an active contribution to the McCombs community. Additionally, you may also comment on your experiences of being a part of the city of Austin. Wrap up your essay with your final thoughts on your overall experience at McCombs. This essay should not only demonstrate your knowledge of the program, but also your enthusiasm to be part of its collaborative community.

Optional Statement:

Please provide any additional information you believe is important and/ or address any areas of concern that will be beneficial to the Admissions Committee in considering your application (e.g. unexplained gaps in work experience, choice of recommenders, academic performance, significant weaknesses in your application, or extenuating personal circumstances). (250 words)

An optional essay is an opportunity for you to give the Ad Com relevant information that you could not provide in other parts of your application, essays, and résumé. For example, if you have a lower than average GMAT score, any grades below a C on your transcript, academic probation or a significant employment gap, you can explain in this essay. To provide context for a weakness in your profile, make sure your reason is genuine to convince the Ad Com that your low grades or employment gap occurred due to unforeseen circumstances beyond your control. Your response should be positive, straightforward, and fact-focused and should not sound like you are making excuses for a weakness in your profile.

Also, if you cannot get your recommendation letter from your current supervisor, please explain that in the optional statement. For more information on the choice of recommenders for your McCombs application, please visit admission blog.

You may be interested in previous years’ essay questions analysis:

UT Austin McCombs Essay Questions Analysis 2017-18

UT Austin McCombs Essay Questions Analysis 2016-17

UT Austin McCombs Essay Questions Analysis 2015-16

UT Austin McCombs Essay Questions Analysis 2014-15

Since 2011, MER (myEssayReview ) has helped many applicants get accepted into McCombs School of Business.

You may email Poonam at myessayreview.com">poonam@myessayreview.com with questions about your McCombs application.

Note: This post first appeared in my essay review blog.

 Web /Blog/ Free resources/LinkedIn/Facebook/

 
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Re: Expert advice for McCombs from Admissions Consultant blogs  [#permalink]

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New post 31 Jul 2018, 17:13
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The UT McCombs School of Business is a globally recognized MBA program, located in Austin, Texas, a center of technology and business for the region. Entrepreneurship is a huge focus for McCombs, and one of the top 5 concentrations (along with Management Consulting, Clean Tech, Innovation Leadership and Supply Chain & Operations Management). Class size is small and close knit, and the students’ backgrounds are diverse.

Stacey Kammerdiener, Senior Texas Full-Time MBA Admissions Officer, advises prospective students, “Be honest. These essays are our way to learn more about you. Our students value authenticity and we look for essays that reflect your authentic self.” More advice can be found at the Texas MBA Insider blog.
ESSAY ONE
We will learn a lot about your professional background through your resume and letter of recommendation. We want to get to know you further. Please introduce yourself using an essays of 250 words, OR a video introduction of one minute.

For an open-ended essay with a creative option (the video) it can be daunting to think of a topic. Rather than focusing on how you are going to communicate, start thinking about what you want to communicate to the Texas MBA admissions committee by introducing yourself to your new study group.

As the Texas Admissions Blog reminds you, “While your professional life is important, this essay is your opportunity to share who you are outside of the bullet points on your resume.” The best essays will dive deep into your motivations and aspirations, perhaps getting into your cultural background, formative moments in your life and friends, family and colleagues who have influenced you. To identify one or two key stories you may want to tell, think about those pivotal moments of change in your life.

For many people the transition from high school to college and from college to work led to personal change. Others had formative childhood experiences or experiences that led to shifts in perspective like travel or living outside your home country. Any one of these moments could be a good way to illustrate who you are and what motivates you.

Once you have identified the content of your essay you can decide how to present it. A video could give you the opportunity to add elements of emotion, such as humor, that are harder to convey in writing. A video also allows you to include graphics, photos or other visual elements (though you should appear in the video for the bulk of it). If your story fits better into a written narrative you may choose the written essay instead.

If you choose a video essay you will still want to write a script for your video. Think about the bullet points you want to cover, and any important points you need to convey. If you decide to talk into the camera, rehearsing will be especially important, and consider having a friend or family member there so you can talk to a person instead of the camera. If you are able to edit the video after you record footage it will be easier to keep it smooth and on topic. Either way, make sure you take the time to record several takes of the video content so you can choose the best one to submit to McCombs.
ESSAY TWO
Picture yourself at graduation. Describe how you spent your two years as a Texas MBA student, and how that experience helped to prepare you for the post-MBA world. (500 words)

This essay is your opportunity to demonstrate strong fit with the Texas MBA program. As part of your homework before starting this set of essays you have hopefully learned as much as possible about the school, now you can bring in your own aspirations and goals. Use your imagination to think about how you might describe your MBA experience at graduation. You’ll likely have experienced both professional and personal growth, and met interesting people who will be part of your lifelong network. The Admissions Blog reminds you that “We have also already reviewed your short and long term goals. Essay two is meant to explain to us how you believe McCombs will help get you there.”

To help you get started, research some of the unique opportunities at McCombs like the Venture Labs, if you have entrepreneurial dreams, and The MBA+ Program, with opportunities to work with influential companies through a variety of touch points. Being part of the city of Austin is another unique benefit to the program that you may want to consider in the context of your background and goals.

For example, perhaps you were interested in working for a major technology firm to learn product manager skills to use in starting your own business. While at McCombs you might have tested ideas with the Venture Labs, and also consulted for major companies like Adobe or HP to learn how large companies worked. These experiences were likely formative as you made career plans.

Don’t forget the personal – McCombs has an active and engaged student culture with many student organizations you likely joined. And your classmates and friends you made in the program were definitely an influence as well.
OPTIONAL STATEMENT
Please provide any additional information you believe is important and/or address any areas of concern that will be beneficial to the Admissions Committee in considering your application (e.g. unexplained gaps in work experience, choice of recommenders, academic performance, or extenuating personal circumstances). (250 words)

This optional essay provides space for you to add your own context to any information that should be explained to the admissions committee. Some areas that may need explanation are: lower than average test score, any grades below a C on your transcript, academic probation or a significant resume gap, you can explain here. Keep your explanation concise and factual, and focused on context for the issue rather than excuses.
***

If you are looking for guidance on your MBA application, Stacy Blackman Consulting can help with hourly and comprehensive consulting services. Contact us to learn more. Visit the website for Stacy Blackman Reviews, and check out the company’s e-publications for more in depth school-by-school guidance.
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Re: Expert advice for McCombs from Admissions Consultant blogs  [#permalink]

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New post 31 Jul 2018, 17:37
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The UT McCombs School of Business has confirmed the MBA essay questions for the 2018-2019 admissions season. They remain unchanged from the previous cycle.
Essay One
We will learn a lot about your professional background through your resume and letter of recommendation. We want to get to know you further. Please introduce yourself using an essays of 250 words, OR a video introduction of one minute.
Essay Two
Picture yourself at graduation. Describe how you spent your two years as a Texas MBA student, and how that experience helped to prepare you for the post-MBA world. (500 words)
Optional Statement
Please provide any additional information you believe is important and/or address any areas of concern that will be beneficial to the Admissions Committee in considering your application (e.g. unexplained gaps in work experience, choice of recommenders, academic performance, or extenuating personal circumstances). (250 words)

***

The Texas MBA program offers great tips regarding what the admissions team is looking for with these questions. Don’t miss this helpful resource. For additional information on applying, please visit the McCombs admissions website. The application for fall 2019 will open in late summer.
***

If you are looking for guidance on your MBA application, Stacy Blackman Consulting can help with hourly and comprehensive consulting services. Contact us to learn more. Visit the website for Stacy Blackman Reviews, and check out the company’s e-publications for more in depth school-by-school guidance.
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Re: Expert advice for McCombs from Admissions Consultant blogs  [#permalink]

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New post 31 Aug 2018, 12:05
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The UT McCombs School of Business is a globally recognized MBA program, located in Austin, Texas, a center of technology and business for the region. Entrepreneurship is a huge focus for McCombs, and one of the top 5 concentrations (along with Management Consulting, Clean Tech, Innovation Leadership and Supply Chain & Operations Management). Class size is small and close knit, and the students’ backgrounds are diverse.

Stacey Kammerdiener, Senior Texas Full-Time MBA Admissions Officer, advises prospective students, “Be honest. These essays are our way to learn more about you. Our students value authenticity and we look for essays that reflect your authentic self.” More advice can be found at the Texas MBA Insider blog.
ESSAY ONE
We will learn a lot about your professional background through your resume and letter of recommendation. We want to get to know you further. Please introduce yourself using an essays of 250 words, OR a video introduction of one minute.

For an open-ended essay with a creative option (the video) it can be daunting to think of a topic. Rather than focusing on how you are going to communicate, start thinking about what you want to communicate to the Texas MBA admissions committee by introducing yourself to your new study group.

As the Texas Admissions Blog reminds you, “While your professional life is important, this essay is your opportunity to share who you are outside of the bullet points on your resume.” The best essays will dive deep into your motivations and aspirations, perhaps getting into your cultural background, formative moments in your life and friends, family and colleagues who have influenced you. To identify one or two key stories you may want to tell, think about those pivotal moments of change in your life.

For many people the transition from high school to college and from college to work led to personal change. Others had formative childhood experiences or experiences that led to shifts in perspective like travel or living outside your home country. Any one of these moments could be a good way to illustrate who you are and what motivates you.

Once you have identified the content of your essay you can decide how to present it. A video could give you the opportunity to add elements of emotion, such as humor, that are harder to convey in writing. A video also allows you to include graphics, photos or other visual elements (though you should appear in the video for the bulk of it). If your story fits better into a written narrative you may choose the written essay instead.

If you choose a video essay you will still want to write a script for your video. Think about the bullet points you want to cover, and any important points you need to convey. If you decide to talk into the camera, rehearsing will be especially important, and consider having a friend or family member there so you can talk to a person instead of the camera. If you are able to edit the video after you record footage it will be easier to keep it smooth and on topic. Either way, make sure you take the time to record several takes of the video content so you can choose the best one to submit to McCombs.
ESSAY TWO
Picture yourself at graduation. Describe how you spent your two years as a Texas MBA student, and how that experience helped to prepare you for the post-MBA world. (500 words)

This essay is your opportunity to demonstrate strong fit with the Texas MBA program. As part of your homework before starting this set of essays you have hopefully learned as much as possible about the school, now you can bring in your own aspirations and goals. Use your imagination to think about how you might describe your MBA experience at graduation. You’ll likely have experienced both professional and personal growth, and met interesting people who will be part of your lifelong network. The Admissions Blog reminds you that “We have also already reviewed your short and long term goals. Essay two is meant to explain to us how you believe McCombs will help get you there.”

To help you get started, research some of the unique opportunities at McCombs like the Venture Labs, if you have entrepreneurial dreams, and The MBA+ Program, with opportunities to work with influential companies through a variety of touch points. Being part of the city of Austin is another unique benefit to the program that you may want to consider in the context of your background and goals.

For example, perhaps you were interested in working for a major technology firm to learn product manager skills to use in starting your own business. While at McCombs you might have tested ideas with the Venture Labs, and also consulted for major companies like Adobe or HP to learn how large companies worked. These experiences were likely formative as you made career plans.

Don’t forget the personal – McCombs has an active and engaged student culture with many student organizations you likely joined. And your classmates and friends you made in the program were definitely an influence as well.
OPTIONAL STATEMENT
Please provide any additional information you believe is important and/or address any areas of concern that will be beneficial to the Admissions Committee in considering your application (e.g. unexplained gaps in work experience, choice of recommenders, academic performance, or extenuating personal circumstances). (250 words)

This optional essay provides space for you to add your own context to any information that should be explained to the admissions committee. Some areas that may need explanation are: lower than average test score, any grades below a C on your transcript, academic probation or a significant resume gap, you can explain here. Keep your explanation concise and factual, and focused on context for the issue rather than excuses.
***

If you are looking for guidance on your UT McCombs MBA application, Stacy Blackman Consulting can help with hourly and comprehensive consulting services. Contact us to learn more. Visit the website for Stacy Blackman Reviews, and check out the company’s e-publications for more in depth school-by-school guidance.
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Re: Expert advice for McCombs from Admissions Consultant blogs  [#permalink]

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New post 24 Sep 2018, 12:15
As it tends to do, the McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas at Austin has made some very minor adjustments to the wording of its application essay questions this year, but otherwise, they essentially remain the same. For its first essay, the school has been asking candidates to introduce themselves since at least 2013 but makes a slight tweak each season to pivot the focus just a touch. For its second essay, the school has applicants imagine looking back on their McCombs MBA experience. Anyone with potential problem areas or unclear elements in their profile can also submit an optional essay to address these issues. Together, McCombs’ essays give candidates ample space to provide meaningful insight into their characters and strengths. We hope our analysis of the school’s prompts will help you do just that.

Essay 1: We will learn a lot about your professional background through your resume and letter of recommendation We want to get to know you further. Please introduce yourself. Select only one communication method you would like to use for your response.
  • Write an essay (250 words)
  • Share a video introduction (one minute in length)

This year, the admissions committee has added a little introductory text before its straightforward request for an introduction, guiding applicants to steer away from aspects of their story that will already be covered in their resume and recommendations. Otherwise, candidates have an arguably blank slate from which to begin here. We imagine that the less guidance a program provides with its essay questions, the more panic is generated in the hearts of hopeful candidates, but let us reassure you that you do not need to be intimidated. Some patience, self-reflection, brainstorming, and authenticity—with a dash of creativity—and you should be on the road to a standout submission.

First, determine the format that is more compatible with your personality. If you are the quiet, thoughtful type, an essay may be the better choice; if you are typically the life of the party or a better speaker than writer, you should probably select the video option. Next, start identifying the kind of information you might share by thinking about what you would like to know about a new person you are meeting and would find interesting, helpful, or intriguing. For example, would you consider someone’s age or undergraduate institution particularly important or compelling? Probably not, so you should skip mentioning such facts in your own introduction. (Remember, too, that your actual audience will be a member of the admissions committee, who will already know such basic information about you from the rest of your application.) You would likely be more curious about what someone does in their spare time, what interesting or exceptional skills they have, whether they are approachable/funny/hyperorganized/a risk taker/etc., whether they have extensive experience in a certain area or a more wide-ranging background, and so on.

So think about the aspects of your personality and profile that you believe truly define you as an individual—not just what you do and have done, but who you are—and fully explore your background, hobbies, talents, experiences, values, goals, and quirks. Brainstorm an extensive list and then eliminate any items that seem too common (e.g., a BA in finance) or basic (e.g., your hometown) until you have a collection of truly distinctive qualities you can weave into your response. Your goal is to provide a well-rounded picture of yourself that draws from multiple areas and shows that you possess characteristics and/or knowledge that would make you a positive addition to McCombs’ diverse community.

Remember to bring energy and enthusiasm to your submission. You are not filling out a job application—you are trying to connect with others, so charisma is key, and a less rigid and traditionally “professional” demeanor is okay. Forego any fancy essay-writing or dramatic tactics (e.g., starting with a quotation, launching into an anecdote) and just be as natural and authentic as possible. Do not pitch your candidacy, detail your career goals, or express your admiration for the program. As they say, you only have one chance to make a first impression, so dedicate the time and work necessary to ensure that your introduction is engaging, substantive, and true to who you are.

If you choose to submit a video, think beyond what you will say and also consider the clothing you will wear, the setting or background of your video, your tone of voice, your language style, whether you will include music, and other similar details. Brainstorm ways of nonverbally communicating some of your strongest attributes and key aspects of your life to help permeate your submission with as much information as possible. For example, if you are an avid biker, consider filming your video while you are actively riding. If you are a dedicated musician, perhaps incorporate your instrument into your message by playing it while you speak (if you are especially confident, you might even sing about yourself!). Think about what makes you who you are today, decide what you most want to share about yourself, and then let your creativity flow.

On a practical note, be sure to speak clearly in your video. You naturally do not want any part of your message to be lost or misunderstood, and the admissions committee may view your communication skills and style as indicators of how you might interact with your classmates and/or speak in the classroom. Spend some time practicing in front of a mirror or a friend, but do not overrehearse. And definitely do not try to read from an off-camera script or notes (trust us—they will be able to tell!). You want to come across as genuine and natural.

Essay 2: Picture yourself at graduation. Describe how you spent your time as a Texas McCombs MBA, and how that experience helped prepare you for the post-MBA world. (500 words)

With this prompt, the McCombs admissions committee is challenging you to imagine where you want to be at the end of your studies (mentally, emotionally, professionally) and explain how you used or navigated the MBA program to get there. So, without using the actual words “why McCombs?” and “how will you engage with our community?,” the school is nevertheless asking you for precisely this information.

The school essentially wants to know the reasons you have selected the McCombs program in particular and how you will take advantage of specific resources and experiences it offers. Why is it the most appropriate school for your goals, and why/how does it fit you personally? The assumption is that something you have learned about McCombs leads you to believe that the school would provide the experience, knowledge, skills, exposure, and/or other element you need to reach your goals. Likewise, something makes you feel you would fit well with the McCombs environment and be comfortable there, that you would be able to be and express the “real” you. So what are those things? All the top MBA programs want reassurance that the candidates they admit have not applied simply because of the school’s reputation or ranking but rather because they are truly excited to be a part of the community and to benefit from that specific learning experience. McCombs is not simply seeking warm bodies with which to fill its classrooms; it is striving to add to a long history of effective global business leaders and a network of alumni dedicated to the school and each other. Demonstrating your authentic interest in the program by offering concrete examples and drawing clear connections between who you want to be and what the school offers is key to crafting a compelling essay response.

If you have targeted McCombs because you feel it is the right program for you, you likely already have an idea of why that is true and how you would function as part of its community. If you do not yet have a handle on these points, you definitely need to start (now!) researching the school thoroughly, including interacting directly with students and/or alumni. Identify at least one (ideally more) resource, offering, or quality that McCombs has that is unique or that it excels in that directly relates to what you need to attain your post-MBA goals. And do not just offer a list—you must explain how the identified element(s) will fulfill particular needs for you.

Keep in mind that business school is not only about course work and recruiting. You can (and should!) also have fun, make friends, and be a contributing member of the community outside the classroom. So take care not to discuss only academic and professional development elements of the McCombs program. Explore the school’s social events and offerings—including affinity, social, and sports clubs, for starters—to identify other aspects of the experience that you anticipate will also play an important role in your MBA journey. Although we would not encourage you to forcethis angle and mention something just to tick a box, so to speak, addressing these options can be an effective way of revealing more of your values and personality to the admissions committee and thereby presenting a more well-rounded impression of yourself.

Optional Statement: Please provide any additional information you believe is important and/or address any areas of concern that you believe will be beneficial to the Admissions Committee in considering your application (e.g., gaps in work experience, choice of recommenders, academic performance, or extenuating personal circumstances). (250 words)

We tend to believe that the best use of the optional essay is to explain confusing or problematic issues in your candidacy, and this prompt offers an opportunity to do just that. So, if you need to, this is your chance to address any questions an admissions officer might have about your profile—a poor grade or overall GPA, a low GMAT or GRE score, a gap in your work experience, etc. Consider downloading a free copy of our mbaMission Optional Essays Guide, in which we offer detailed advice on deciding whether to submit an optional essay and on how best to approach writing such a submission, with multiple examples.

However, because McCombs does not stipulate that you can only discuss a problem area in this essay, you have some leeway to share anything you think may be pivotal or particularly compelling. We caution you against trying to fill this space simply because you fear that not doing so would somehow count against you. Remember, by submitting an additional essay, you are asking the admissions committee to do extra work on your behalf, so you need to make sure that time is warranted. If you are using the essay to emphasize something that if omitted would render your application incomplete, take this opportunity to write a very brief narrative that reveals this key new aspect of your candidacy.
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