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Darden MBA Essays for 2019-2020  [#permalink]

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New post 10 Jun 2019, 10:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Darden MBA Essays for 2019-2020
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Is the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business on your shortlist of target MBA programs? Then get ready to hit the ground running, because the full-time MBA application is now live! Here are the Darden MBA essays for the 2019-2020 admissions cycle.

Darden MBA Essays
For the 2019-20 application cycle, Darden will again offer multiple short answer questions. The goal is to get to know all of the various facets of your background and personality. 

1. Darden strives to identify and cultivate responsible leaders who follow their purpose. Please provide an example of a situation in which you have made a meaningful impact. (200 words)

2. Diversity and inclusion are critical to our mission, and they work best when they are an integral and celebrated part of our community. Read University of Virginia’s Diversity & Inclusion Vision Statement. Share a time in which you engaged with a perspective, identity, community or experience that was different from your own and how it impacted your worldview. (200 words)

3. The Batten Foundation Worldwide Scholarship provides all Darden students in our full-time MBA program with an opportunity to participate in a Darden Worldwide Course. If you could choose any location in the world, where would you want to travel, and why? (50 words)

4. Tell us what you would want your learning team to know about you – personally, professionally, or both? (100 words)

5. What is your short-term, post-MBA goal and why? (150 words)

***

For more information on applying, please visit the Darden School admissions site.  If you need guidance on your Darden MBA essays, or wish to discuss your MBA plans, reach out for a complimentary analysis of your candidacy. We’re here to help!

The post Darden MBA Essays for 2019-2020 appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________
Interested in a free 30 minute consultation with the Stacy Blackman Team? Sign up here: http://stacyblackman.com/contact

Stacy Blackman | Stacy Blackman Consulting Inc | http://www.StacyBlackman.com | +1 323.934.3936
MBA blogger, US News and Author, The MBA Application Roadmap
Stacy Blackman Consulting Representative
User avatar
Joined: 03 Nov 2010
Posts: 1676
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Tuesday Tips: Michigan Ross MBA Essay Tips 2019-2020  [#permalink]

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New post 11 Jun 2019, 05:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Tuesday Tips: Michigan Ross MBA Essay Tips 2019-2020
ImageThe University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business is a top ranked MBA program that provides real-world opportunity for students. Ross emphasizes learning both inside and outside the classroom. This is a close-knit community, and you should demonstrate your fit with the program within the application process. Review our Ross MBA essay tips and show the admissions committee you are intellectually curious and able to accomplish your goals.

Visiting Ross or learning about the program through current students, alumni or faculty would be helpful before starting this set of essays. The Ross admissions committee offers guidance through videos, blog posts and other communications. For example, Admissions Director Soojin Kwon has provided tips in a series of videos on the Michigan admissions website.

In one of her videos, she says that a clear resume sets candidates apart and is the first thing they review in the application. Kwon also emphasizes the importance of test scores. In addition, Kwon and her team want to see candidates at events, showing strong people skills.

PART 1: SHORT ANSWER QUESTIONS

Select one prompt from each group. Respond to your selected prompts using 100 words or fewer (<100 words each; 300 words total).
Group 1

• I want people to know that I:

• I made a difference when I:

Group 2

• I am out of my comfort zone when:

• I was humbled when:

Group 3

• I was aware that I was different when:

• I was challenged when:
Take note that these short answers are about getting to know you personally, not your collection of accomplishments. Ross values: community engagement, interpersonal communication and teamwork skills.

When you think about your short answers you may want to write about an important extracurricular moment, a challenge you overcame, or an event in your life that highlights something unique about your background. The questions are short and purposeful. The experiences you describe should be clear and stand alone.

Looking at each group in turn, Group 1 might be an opportunity to talk about impact and action. It reads as a place to highlight accomplishments. The first open-ended prompt allows you to talk about something you feel proud of—a personal quality, or an experience. For the next prompt, you could describe when you made a difference to an organization, person or advanced a cause important to you.

Group 2 is more about your reaction to events in your life and your character. How do you interpret what happens to you and how do you handle adversity and discomfort? Perhaps you have unique experiences in your life thus far. For example, living outside your home country, working with diverse groups, or overcoming a challenge at work or in your personal life.

Group 3 is an opportunity to highlight how you are unique as compared to other people you know. These questions ask for some self-awareness as you describe who you are and how others may view you. What makes you different from your peers? What is a particular challenge to you that may not be to other people?

PART 2: ESSAY

Michigan Ross is a place where people from all backgrounds with different career goals can thrive. Please share your short-term career goal. Why is this the right choice for you? (300 words)
Admissions Director Kwon said Michigan Ross is “looking for — straightforward” in response to this essay question. Therefore, to answer this essay in a straightforward way you should state your career goal in a sentence or two. Then, use the remainder of the space to elaborate.

Make sure to answer “why” you chose your short-term career goal. As you describe your goal make sure you explain what has led you to pursue it, and why it resonates with you. The answer doesn’t need to be elaborate or dramatic, but it should be convincing and real.

Note that the question highlights “all backgrounds and different career goals” that all thrive at Ross. If you have a unique background or goal it can be an asset to show how you will contribute to this environment where everyone thrives.

Kwon advised last year that the admissions committee does not expect you to have all the experience needed for your career goals right now. However, “We want to know that you understand the skills that are important for your desired career. Recruiters assess whether you’re able to bring relevant skills/strengths to the table, so we do the same. Some of the skills and knowledge you’ll need will be developed during your time in the MBA program, but students are more successful in their career search if they understand the skills required to succeed in their chosen field.”

OPTIONAL STATEMENT

This section should only be used to convey information not addressed elsewhere in your application, for example, completion of supplemental coursework, employment gaps, academic issues, etc. Feel free to use bullet points where appropriate.
Take it directly from the Ross admissions director: “The optional essay should only be used if there’s something in your background that requires a brief explanation. It’s not the place to submit an essay you wrote for another school, or to tell us how much you love Ross.”

Think about anything that may raise questions while reviewing a resume, transcript or recommendations. Typically the kinds of gaps that raise questions are significant gaps in employment (more than a few months), anything below a C on your college transcript (particularly in quantitative coursework) and low test scores.

Stacy Blackman Consulting has worked with successful candidates to Michigan Ross for over a decade and can offer comprehensive strategic advice every step of the way. Now that you’ve reviewed our Ross MBA essay tips, contact us to learn more.

The post Tuesday Tips: Michigan Ross MBA Essay Tips 2019-2020 appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________
Interested in a free 30 minute consultation with the Stacy Blackman Team? Sign up here: http://stacyblackman.com/contact

Stacy Blackman | Stacy Blackman Consulting Inc | http://www.StacyBlackman.com | +1 323.934.3936
MBA blogger, US News and Author, The MBA Application Roadmap
Stacy Blackman Consulting Representative
User avatar
Joined: 03 Nov 2010
Posts: 1676
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Tuesday Tips: Kellogg MBA Essay Tips 2019-2020  [#permalink]

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New post 11 Jun 2019, 07:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Tuesday Tips: Kellogg MBA Essay Tips 2019-2020
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If you are getting ready to apply to Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management this year, these Kellogg MBA essay tips will help you prepare to knock it out of the park.

Is Kellogg the right fit for you? The Kellogg School is a close-knit community. It values a diverse community and philanthropy. In addition, our insiders tell us that candidates who show the right combination of high impact leadership and humility demonstrate “Kellogg DNA.”

Do your research on the programs, activities, clubs, classes and professors you are most excited about. While you are talking to students and alumni, look for ways you will contribute to the Kellogg MBA community.

According to Kellogg’s admissions criteria: “We look for people who are not afraid to question the status quo, can motivate a team to drive impact, and are eager to dive in and collaborate with an engaged, ambitious community of peers.”

That said, being overly coached won’t help you break through with Kellogg. Therefore, keep yourself authentic in your communication and let your real self shine through.

Kellogg MBA Essay Tips for 2019-2020
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The following two Kellogg MBA essays are required of all applicants:

Essay 1: Kellogg’s purpose is to educate, equip and inspire brave leaders who create lasting value. Provide a recent example where you have demonstrated leadership and created value. What challenges did you face and what did you learn? (450 words)
This essay focuses on leadership using a behavioral essay framework (the clue is “provide a recent example…”). Details about exactly what you did, said and learned in your leadership story tell the reader how you approach issues and learn from experience. “Creating lasting value” is another key to this essay and you should think about what you have done that endures.

As you structure the essay, spend some time to set up the background of the story. Then use most of the space to describe specifically what you did, thought, felt and how you behaved. Also, use details to entice the reader and set yourself apart. A few well-placed specifics will add color without adding length to the essay.

You have discretion in your topic selection, as long as you demonstrated leadership and created value. It might be a time that everything went smoothly and you learned how to work with a group or inspire people to action. On the other hand, it could be a challenging situation where you learned what not to do! Don’t be nervous about showing weakness here, as long as your story demonstrates that you have left your mark on the organization.

If you choose a challenging situation then the learning part of the essay will be important. In addition, show you can and do learn from experience. Every leader has to learn and develop, and willingness to be open to feedback and improve will be an asset.

Do not neglect mentioning teamwork, which is a core value of Kellogg’s culture. Your leadership experience is likely part of a team at work or in an extracurricular activity, and sensitivity to teamwork and collaboration in any leadership story demonstrates maturity and social skills.

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Essay Two: Values are what guide you in your life and work. What values are important to you and how have they influenced you? (450 words)
This essay question is a hybrid of a classic career goals essay and a personal essay. Kellogg is interested in candidates who are able to integrate their values into their personal and professional goals. How have your values directed your actions in work and life?

When you describe how your values have influenced you in past decisions, make sure it is relevant to your plans to pursue an MBA at Kellogg. Therefore, the story you tell should provide insight into your decision to pursue an MBA and allude to your future goals. Because this isn’t a question about your entire work and life thus far, you should choose only one or two main experiences to share.

As you discuss how your values have guided you, specific examples will communicate concisely. For example, if you have a value of driving excellence, and that has led you to a consulting career where you help organizations become more efficient and achieve their goals. Or, your core value may be helping others and you have chosen a career that provides the ability for you to give back to your community or lead a group of people.

The Video Essay

The Kellogg admissions team advises the following in regards to the video essay:

The video essay provides you with an additional opportunity to demonstrate what you will bring to our vibrant Kellogg community — in an interactive way. You will respond to several short video essay questions. The questions are designed to bring to life the person we have learned about on paper.

Read specific advice for how best to prepare for the video essay here.

Watching a video essay gives the admissions committee a sense of who you are, and your personality. Therefore, the Kellogg admissions committee advises: “Be yourself. We don’t want scripted answers — we want to get to know you and learn something new. Please do not try to reuse an example from an essay that might in some roundabout way answer the video essay question you are being asked. We already read that essay, so why tell us that story again?”

After you submit your application you will receive your actual video essay questions. Therefore, prepare as if you would for an interview, drafting the topics you want to cover and practicing your presentation. Writing some bullet points down in advance will help you remember and focus as you answer the questions.

The video should accurately portray your personality and demeanor. Extensive preparation will help you be comfortable and be yourself when you are recording the video. That said, it’s important not to be overly scripted as if you are “acting.”

Kellogg allows you to practice with the video format a few times with practice questions before you submit your official video. In addition, it would be useful to do a few rounds of practice in front of the camera to get comfortable.

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JD-MBA applicants: Please discuss your post-JD-MBA career goals and why the JD-MBA Program is the right program to help you reach those goals. (250 words)
Doing your research on Kellogg MBA’s academics and resources will help you answer the question about why you need a dual degree to achieve your goals.

The JD-MBA at Kellogg is a highly competitive admissions process and will require a very clear explanation of what you will do with both degrees after school. Consider the unique attributes of the Kellogg JD-MBA program as compared to others, and also why you specifically need both a JD and an MBA to achieve your career goals.

MMM applicants: The five core values of the MMM Program are curiosity, creativity, empathy, open-mindedness and a learning mindset. Describe a situation in which you demonstrated one of these values. Why is this value an important part of the MMM experience for you? (250 words)
Continuing the theme of “values” from the required essay, candidates for the MMM degree should reflect the intent of the program. Also, Kellogg is looking for design thinkers for this program, so you will need to demonstrate how you have shown curiosity, empathy, open-mindedness and a learning mindset and are ready to contribute in the MMM program.

This is a behavioral essay question (“Describe a situation…”) and you will need to show the reader how you felt, acted and made decisions in the situation.

Reapplicants: Since your previous application, what steps have you taken to strengthen your candidacy? (250 words)
While answering this question make sure you provide tangible evidence that you have improved your candidacy. Some of the most tangible improvements could be a stronger GMAT score or grades from new quantitative classes you attended.

Other steps that you can describe include a promotion at work or new volunteer activities. Another area could be increased responsibility at work or in your activities. If you don’t have something tangible and external to report, discuss how your career goals have changed or your personal goals have been refined.

All applicants have the opportunity to provide explanations or clarification in Additional Information. Use this section if you think the person reviewing your application might have a few questions about one or more of your responses. This could include:

• Unexplained gaps in work experience

• Academic, GMAT or GRE performance

• Extenuating circumstances that we should be aware of when reviewing your application

If there are any areas of concern, this is the correct place to address them. Strike an upbeat tone here and avoid excuses. Also explain your issue clearly and focus most of the essay on the correction for the issue. For example, for a disciplinary issue, demonstrate that you learned from the experience and have been an ideal citizen since.

Low GPA issues should be explained here. If there is a grade of C or below on your transcript the admissions committee will want to know why, and feel comfortable it is an outlier. For academic questions, emphasize your improved performance later in your college career or in work or classes since college.

***

Need even more Kellogg MBA essay tips and advice? Contact Stacy Blackman Consulting for a free analysis of your candidacy. For more details on the application process, visit the Kellogg MBA Admissions website.

The post Tuesday Tips: Kellogg MBA Essay Tips 2019-2020 appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________
Interested in a free 30 minute consultation with the Stacy Blackman Team? Sign up here: http://stacyblackman.com/contact

Stacy Blackman | Stacy Blackman Consulting Inc | http://www.StacyBlackman.com | +1 323.934.3936
MBA blogger, US News and Author, The MBA Application Roadmap
Stacy Blackman Consulting Representative
User avatar
Joined: 03 Nov 2010
Posts: 1676
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Want to Become More Creative? Book a Trip to Finland  [#permalink]

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New post 12 Jun 2019, 07:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Want to Become More Creative? Book a Trip to Finland
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This post originally appeared on the Blacklight, our new newsletter for professionals.
In a continent crowded with picturesque landscapes, standing out isn’t easy. So when Finland created a marketing campaign in 2010 to boost tourism, it decided to tout a uniquely Finnish cultural trait: silence.  (But, since the Finns are also super polite, the slogan is actually “Silence, please”. ) In today’s 24/7-connected culture, quiet is becoming a precious resource—much like clean water and clear air.

In fact, acoustic ecologist Gordon Hempton considers silence an endangered species. He defines real quiet not as an absence of sound, but an absence of noise. “I think we’re realizing quiet is important, and we need silence. That silence is not a luxury, but it’s essential,” Hempton says.

The Benefits of Alone Time
Plenty of research points to the importance of solitude for calming our bodies and inspiring creativity. Once we turn off the pinging phone, social media, Flipboard, NPR updates, podcasts, YouTube, etc., our minds have a chance to rest and recharge.

Silence may feel uncomfortable at first. We’re so used to being surrounded by noise and receiving non-stop input. But when we tune out those outside influences, we become receptive to deeper thoughts and reflection. When you embrace the quiet, something magical happens.

The ideas start flowing, and solutions that have eluded you until now suddenly pop into your head. And it’s not just painters and novelists who can enjoy the creative thought and idea generation that solitude sparks.

In his memoir, “iWoz: Computer Geek to Cult Icon: How I Invented the Personal Computer, Co-Founded Apple, and Had Fun Doing It,” Steve Wozniak makes a convincing argument for the importance of intellectual independence in the creative process:

Most inventors and engineers I’ve met are like me — they’re shy and they live in their heads. They’re almost like artists. In fact, the very best of them are artists. And artists work best alone — best outside of corporate environments, best where they can control an invention’s design without a lot of other people designing it for marketing or some other committee. I don’t believe anything really revolutionary has ever been invented by committee.

Solitude + Nature = Creative Bliss
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By now you’ve guessed one of the best ways to boost creativity: spending time in nature. In 2012,  neuroscientist David Strayer conducted a study of nature’s effects on 56 adults. After four days of backpacking in the mountains, disconnected from all technology, the subjects’ performance on a creative, problem-solving task increased by a full 50 percent.

Strayer’s research shows that the prefrontal cortex is less active when people are in a natural environment. Once immersed in “nature therapy,” your mind begins to sift through memories and explore random ideas and emotions.

“You let the prefrontal cortex rest, and all of a sudden these flashes of insight come to you,” Strayer says. “It supports creativity, positive well-being, reductions in stress. There are all kinds of reasons why it’s helpful.”

If you’re feeling the call of the wild, consider booking your next vacay in Finland—land of saunas, Northern Lights, and world-class solitude. It’s the ideal place to tune into the sound of quiet and recharge your creative soul.

***

Did you enjoy this post?  Our newsletter the Blacklight aims to illuminate with every dispatch that lands in your inbox. If you’re thirsty for guidance to help you slay it at work or as a student and move your goal posts closer, sign up today.

The post Want to Become More Creative? Book a Trip to Finland appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________
Interested in a free 30 minute consultation with the Stacy Blackman Team? Sign up here: http://stacyblackman.com/contact

Stacy Blackman | Stacy Blackman Consulting Inc | http://www.StacyBlackman.com | +1 323.934.3936
MBA blogger, US News and Author, The MBA Application Roadmap
Stacy Blackman Consulting Representative
User avatar
Joined: 03 Nov 2010
Posts: 1676
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Booth MBA Essays for 2019-2020  [#permalink]

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New post 12 Jun 2019, 10:00
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Booth MBA Essays for 2019-2020
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Are you planning on submitting an application to the University of Chicago Booth School of Business this upcoming season? Then let the brainstorming begin! The Booth MBA essays for the 2019-2020 admissions cycle have arrived.

Chicago Booth MBA Essays
  • How will the Booth MBA help you achieve your immediate and long-term post-MBA career goals? (250 word minimum)
  • Chicago Booth immerses you in a choice-rich environment. How have your interests, leadership experiences, and other passions influenced the choices in your life? (250 word minimum)
Response Guidelines:
      • Length: There is no maximum length, only a 250 word minimum. We trust that you will use your best judgment in determining how long your submission should be, but we recommend that you think strategically about how to best allocate the space.
      • Acceptable Formats: Submissions must be entered into the text box provided in the application.
Optional Question:
      • Is there any unclear information in your application that needs further explanation? (300 word maximum)
Re-applicant Question:
      • Upon reflection, how has your perspective regarding your future, Chicago Booth, and/or getting an MBA changed since the time of your last application? (300 word maximum)
***

For more information on applying, please visit the Chicago Booth admissions site.  If you need guidance on your Booth MBA essays, or wish to discuss your MBA plans, reach out for a complimentary analysis of your candidacy. We’re here to help!

The post Booth MBA Essays for 2019-2020 appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________
Interested in a free 30 minute consultation with the Stacy Blackman Team? Sign up here: http://stacyblackman.com/contact

Stacy Blackman | Stacy Blackman Consulting Inc | http://www.StacyBlackman.com | +1 323.934.3936
MBA blogger, US News and Author, The MBA Application Roadmap
Stacy Blackman Consulting Representative
User avatar
Joined: 03 Nov 2010
Posts: 1676
Location: Los Angeles, CA
LGBTQ Diversity at Business School  [#permalink]

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New post 13 Jun 2019, 08:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: LGBTQ Diversity at Business School
June is Pride Month around the globe, so we’re taking a look at how top business schools are striving provide a welcoming environment for applicants and students of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) community.

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But first, how can applicants determine which schools rank as gay-friendly? Enter Campus Pride. This leading national nonprofit organization works to create a safer environment for LGBTQ students.  It has created a Campus Climate Index that takes an in-depth look at LGBTQ-friendly policies, programs, and practices.

This year, Campus Pride partnered with BestColleges to compile a 2019 list of best colleges for LGBTQ students. These schools excelled in eight LGBTQ-focused areas: policy inclusion, support and institutional commitment, academic life, student life, housing, campus safety, counseling and health, and recruitment and retention efforts.

Top ratings went to several universities also lauded for their elite MBA programs. The list includes:

  • Babson College
  • Columbia
  • Cornell
  • Indiana University at Bloomington
  • Dartmouth College
  • University of Virginia
  • University of Pennsylvania
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • University of California at Los Angeles
Support on campus for LGBTQ students
Student clubs and organizations like Ross Out for Business, Pride@Kellogg, and Wharton Out 4Biz strive to foster a supportive atmosphere and offer a social network for students, alumni, staff, and faculty. These groups provide opportunities for students to explore the roles and contributions of gays and lesbians in the business community.

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“Recruiters are increasingly placing an emphasis on diversity in the workplace,” Roxanne Hori, associate dean at NYU Stern, told the Financial Times in an article on tapping into the LGBTQ talent pool.

Management consultants like McKinsey led the way, Hori said. Subsequently, banks and tech companies have worked to catch up, she noted. They now actively promote affinity groups in order to create a welcoming environment, she said.

LGBTQ applicants and students should also check out the nonprofit organization Reaching Out MBA. It promotes the education, visibility, and networking capabilities of LGBTQ graduate business school students primarily through an annual conference. This year, it will take place October 10-12, 2019 in Atlanta.

Is this a topic for your MBA apps?
As MBA admissions consultants, we know that sexuality is not a topic often addressed within the b-school application. Nevertheless, we urged one gay client to consider weaving that personal information into his essays as a way to distinguish himself from his peers. Initially, he resisted what he thought seemed like a “diversity gimmick.”

But we helped him see that the process of coming out was integral to his identity. It was a major theme in his life, and had shaped him in many ways. The client ended up adapting one essay per school to his sexuality. He discussed his journey of self-discovery and the process of self-acceptance.

Then, he wrote about telling family and friends, their reactions, and how that had impacted him. The mechanics of his story may have been similar to others. But the way it shaped his outlook, and his involvement in mentoring activities, was personal.

Ultimately, this applicant was admitted to Columbia University and Harvard University. We’ll never know for sure whether including this element in his applications led to those admits. However, we all agreed that the application he submitted had revealed a more authentic picture of himself.

What does the adcomm think?
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Here’s what the admissions team at Duke Fuqua has to say on the subject:

“It is completely your decision whether or not to be out in your application.  However, the Admissions team strives to get to know you on a personal level, and many LGBT applicants feel that they can better present themselves and their “stories” in their applications if they are open about the sexuality and gender identity.

The Admissions team is very LGBT-friendly and is excited to work to increase the relative proportion of LGBT students in the larger Fuqua student body, given our historical under-representation in MBA programs.

As a quick note, if you are ‘out’ in your application, you do not automatically have to be out to your classmates and professors if you so choose (although we do hope that most LGBT students will choose to be out on campus).”

***

The right fit is a crucial part of a positive MBA experience. That means finding a school where you will thrive personally and professionally. When researching potential programs, remember to give significant weight to how welcoming the campus environment feels.

As Reaching Out MBA notes, “you’re not part of the LGBTQ MBA community for two years—you’re part of it for life.”

The post LGBTQ Diversity at Business School appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________
Interested in a free 30 minute consultation with the Stacy Blackman Team? Sign up here: http://stacyblackman.com/contact

Stacy Blackman | Stacy Blackman Consulting Inc | http://www.StacyBlackman.com | +1 323.934.3936
MBA blogger, US News and Author, The MBA Application Roadmap
Stacy Blackman Consulting Representative
User avatar
Joined: 03 Nov 2010
Posts: 1676
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Stay On Track with SBC’s Top Ten Blog Posts-June 2019 Edition  [#permalink]

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New post 14 Jun 2019, 07:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Stay On Track with SBC’s Top Ten Blog Posts-June 2019 Edition
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Wondering which blog posts this year’s crop of MBA applicants visit the most on the Stacy Blackman Consulting site? We were, too! Thanks to modern technology—AKA Google analytics—you now have the news you need right at your fingertips.

Without further ado…

SBC’s Top Ten Most-Visited Blog Posts
Harvard Business School 2018-2019 MBA Essay Tips
The most challenging part of the HBS essay is remaining disciplined.  Who is Harvard looking for? The admissions committee writes that “Habit of Leadership, Analytical Aptitude and Appetite, and Engaged Community Citizenship” are the common characteristics of a successful applicant.

Wharton MBA Essay Tips 2019-2020
The Wharton School seeks to understand who you are and what motivates you in this set of essays. Beyond your credentials and experience, fit is important. Are you excited to join the Wharton community? How will you contribute? Wharton values diversity and teamwork, and wants a class that will work well with each other.

Review our Wharton MBA essay tips, and get to know the Wharton community. Wharton has a specific culture, and learning about the culture will pay off in your application.

The 411 on Recent Updates in MBA Admissions
If you plan to apply for business school next season, you’ll want to have a clear understanding of the MBA admissions landscape. We’ve seen several updates in MBA admissions over the past two years. Today, we’re taking a look at some specific questions we’ve fielded from various news outlets related to these changes.

Character Prevails: Stanford & Harvard Business School MBA Applications
Have you ever heard of the term “double admits”? That’s what we in the MBA admissions consulting industry call those singular applicants who receive admissions offers from both Harvard Business School and Stanford Graduate School of Business.

We’ve worked with many top applicants this MBA admissions season who achieved this impressive feat—some with scholarships to boot. Here we analyze eight cases—and we have eight specific takeaways to share.

Successful Reapplicant to Harvard Business School, Stanford GSB
For many rejected MBA candidates, having to wait another year to start business school feels like pure agony. When we met Ed Redden last year, he had submitted six failed applications, but the rejections from Harvard Business School and Stanford Graduate School of Business in particular made him question whether he should even try to apply again.

Face Off: Stanford GSB vs Berkeley Haas
The school selection process for MBA applicants can seem overwhelming. With so many great business schools, how do you decide which one is right for you? In SBC’s new blog series Face Off, we tease out the strengths and differences between two similarly ranked b-schools. First item of business today: the Stanford MBA application versus the UC Berkeley Haas MBA application.

Face Off: Wharton School vs Chicago Booth
The school selection process for MBA applicants can seem overwhelming. With so many great business schools, how do you decide which one is right for you? In SBC’s new blog series Face Off, we tease out the strengths and differences between two similarly ranked b-schools. First item of business today: the Wharton MBA application versus the Chicago Booth MBA application.

Columbia MBA Essay Tips for 2019-2020
Columbia Business School has released the application and essay questions for candidates beginning at the MBA program in 2020. These essay questions have been updated for this year. The new MBA essay questions include a new question about leadership and your fit with Columbia Business School.

Client Case Study: How the GRE® General Test Can Complement an Unconventional Applicant
When this client first contacted Stacy Blackman Consulting for guidance with his MBA application, he told us how he had struggled with the GMAT. Test-taking was not one of his strengths. After two attempts, he could not raise his score enough to be competitive with other candidates applying to his dream MBA program at Columbia Business School.

H1B Visa Program Updates to Benefit MBA Students in the US
There’s good news for international MBA students! The H1B visa program has been updated to benefit international graduate students, who will now effectively get two shots at approval.

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For more MBA applicant advice and news, you can also check out the February edition of SBC’s Top Ten Most-Visited Blog Posts. Good luck as you map out your business school application strategy!

The post Stay On Track with SBC’s Top Ten Blog Posts-June 2019 Edition appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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Cornell MBA Deadlines for 2019-2020  [#permalink]

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New post 14 Jun 2019, 11:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Cornell MBA Deadlines for 2019-2020
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Is Cornell University’s SC Johnson College of Business on your shortlist of target MBA programs? Then get ready to mark your calendar. The Cornell MBA deadlines for the 2019-2020 admission season have been announced!

Cornell MBA Deadlines for the Two-Year Program
October Round
Application due: October 8, 2019

Decisions released between: November 15, 2019–December 20, 2019

November Round
Application due: November 5, 2019

Decisions released between: January 15, 2020–February 20, 2020

January Round
Application due: January 8, 2020

Decisions released between: March 20, 2020–April 10, 2020

April Round
Application due: April 8, 2020

Decisions released between: May 8, 2020–June 1, 2020

Consortium for Graduate Study in Management Deadlines
October application due: October 15, 2019

January application due: January 5, 2020

Cornell MBA Deadlines for the One-Year Program
Early Action
Application due: September 5, 2019

Decisions released between: October 15, 2019–November 20, 2019

October Round
Application due: October 8, 2019

Decisions released between: November 15, 2019–December 20, 2019

November Round
Application due: November 5, 2019

Decisions released between: January 15, 2020–February 20, 2020

January Round
Application due: January 8, 2020*

Decisions released between: February 20, 2020–March 20, 2020

*After January 8th, applications will be received and reviewed on a space available basis with a final submission deadline of March 5, 2020. International students requiring F-1 visa sponsorship must apply by the January 8th deadline.

Rolling
Application due: March 5, 2020

Applications should be submitted by 11:59 PM Eastern Time.

***

For more information on applying, visit the Johnson School admissions website. If you need guidance on your MBA applications or wish to discuss your MBA plans, don’t hesitate to reach out for a complimentary analysis of your candidacy. We’re here to help!

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McCombs MBA Application Deadlines for 2019-2020  [#permalink]

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New post 17 Jun 2019, 09:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: McCombs MBA Application Deadlines for 2019-2020
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Is the UT McCombs School of Business on your shortlist of target MBA programs this year? The mark your calendar. The Texas McCombs MBA application deadlines for the 2019-2020 admissions season have been announced.
McCombs MBA Application Deadlines
Round 1 
Application due: October 8, 2019

Decision released: December 17, 2019

Round 2
Application due: January 7, 2020

Decision released: March 26, 2020

Round 3
Application due: March 31, 2020

Decision released: May 7, 2020

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 need guidance on your Texas McCombs MBA application, or wish to discuss your MBA plans, reach out for a complimentary analysis of your candidacy. We’re here to help!

The post McCombs MBA Application Deadlines for 2019-2020 appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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Cambridge MBA Deadlines for 2019-2020  [#permalink]

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New post 17 Jun 2019, 09:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Cambridge MBA Deadlines for 2019-2020
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Are you interested in the Cambridge Judge Business School? Get ready to mark your calendar! Here are the Cambridge MBA deadlines for the 2019-2020 admissions cycle.

Cambridge MBA Deadlines and Interview Days
Round 1
Application due: September 9, 2019

Interview days: October 20-21, 2019

Round 2
Application due: October 28, 2019

Interview days: December 8-9, 2019

Round 3
Application due: January 13, 2020

Interview days: February 23-24 or March 1-2, 2020

Round 4
Application due: March 9, 2020

Interview days: April 26-27, 2020

Round 5
Application due: May 5, 2020

Interview days: June 7-8, 2020

Admissions for the 2020/21 class will open in mid-July 2019. All applications are due by 23:59 GMT. For additional information on applying, please visit the Cambridge Judge admissions website.

If you need guidance on your Cambridge MBA application, or wish to discuss your MBA plans, reach out for a complimentary analysis of your candidacy. We’re here to help!

The post Cambridge MBA Deadlines for 2019-2020 appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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Stanford MBA Deadlines for 2019-2020  [#permalink]

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New post 17 Jun 2019, 10:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Stanford MBA Deadlines for 2019-2020
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Is the Stanford Graduate School of Business on your shortlist of target MBA programs? Then get ready to mark your calendar. The Stanford MBA deadlines for the 2019-2020 admissions season have been announced!

2019-2020 Stanford MBA Deadlines
Round 1
Application due: September 12, 2019

Decision released: December 12, 2019

Round 2
Application due: January 9, 2020

Decision released: April 2, 2020

Round 3
Application due: April 8, 2020

Decision released: May 21, 2020

Applications are due by 2 p.m. PST on the day of the deadline. For additional information on applying, please visit the Stanford GSB admissions website.

If you need guidance on your  Stanford MBA application, or wish to discuss your MBA plans, reach out for a complimentary analysis of your candidacy. We’re here to help!

The post Stanford MBA Deadlines for 2019-2020 appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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Stanford MBA Essay Questions for 2019-2020  [#permalink]

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New post 17 Jun 2019, 10:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Stanford MBA Essay Questions for 2019-2020
ImageStanford Graduate School of Business has announced the deadlines and essays for the 2019-2020 admissions cycle. The Stanford MBA essay questions remain unchanged from previous admissions seasons.

Stanford asks for two personal essays in order to gain greater understanding into applicants’ character and hopes.  “In each essay we want to hear your genuine voice,” the admissions team explains. “Think carefully about your values, passions, aims, and dreams prior to writing them.”

Stanford MBA Essay Questions
Essay A: What matters most to you, and why?
For this essay, Stanford would like you to:

  • Do some deep self-examination, so you can genuinely illustrate who you are and how you came to be the person you are.
  • Share the insights, experiences, and lessons that shaped your perspectives, rather than focusing merely on what you’ve done or accomplished.
  • Write from the heart, and illustrate how a person, situation, or event has influenced you.
  • Focus on the “why” rather than the “what.”
Essay B: Why Stanford?
Enlighten us on how earning your MBA at Stanford will enable you to realize your ambitions.

  • Explain your decision to pursue graduate education in management.
  • Explain the distinctive opportunities you will pursue at Stanford.
  • If you are applying to both the MBA and MSx programs, use Essay B to address your interest in both programs.
LENGTH
Your answers for both essay questions combined may not exceed 1,150 words (1,200 words if you are applying to both the MBA and MSx programs).  Each of you has your own story to tell, so please allocate these words between the essays in the way that is most effective for you.

We recommend up to 750 words for Essay A and up to 400 words for Essay B. We often find effective essays written in far fewer words.

For more information, please visit the Stanford GSB admissions website. If you need guidance on your Stanford MBA application, or wish to discuss your MBA plans, reach out for a complimentary analysis of your candidacy. We’re here to help!

The post Stanford MBA Essay Questions for 2019-2020 appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

_________________
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Tuesday Tips: Booth MBA Essay Tips for 2019-2020  [#permalink]

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New post 18 Jun 2019, 05:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Tuesday Tips: Booth MBA Essay Tips for 2019-2020
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The University of Chicago Booth School of Business ranks as a top choice school for many MBA students. Chicago Booth has a tradition of intellectual inquiry, non-conformity, and innovation. Along with strong academics, Chicago will be looking for leadership and team building skills, and community involvement. The Chicago MBA program has kept the same essay questions from last year. Review our Booth MBA essay tips to help strengthen your application.

Booth MBA Essay Tips for 2019-2020 Admissions Season
This set of essays focuses on career goals and an essay about your goals for your Chicago MBA experience. Also, note that Chicago is setting a word minimum for the required essay responses, while most schools set a maximum. This suggests that Chicago is asking for you to be thoughtful and thorough in your response.

Your first step is to do as much school research as possible on Chicago. Visit campus. Attend events. Speak to alumni. Read the admissions blog. Do what you can to experience the community for yourself before starting your application. This research will be invaluable as you set pen to paper.

The Chicago MBA admissions committee can see your academic skills from your GPA/GMAT, transcripts and other fixed data points. Also, focus on showing intellectual curiosity in the essays and the interview. In addition, personal qualities, leadership, and career goals can be covered in these essays.

Contact Stacy Blackman Consulting for a free consultation on your MBA plans.

Essay Questions
Essay One: How will the Booth MBA help you achieve your immediate and long-term post-MBA career goals? (250 word minimum)
This career goals essay is the ideal way to describe your track record of success. You can also show that you have realistic expectations for your Booth MBA. For example, while career goals should be aspirational, they should also be achievable with your career skills and a Booth education. Think about what you have done so far in your career. What have you learned? How can you use your past experience to inform your future goals?

This question asks for both short and long-term goals. Also, the essay asks why Booth is the right place for you to pursue your MBA. Thorough research into your career path and the options for its development at Booth will allow you to answer this question fully and with conviction.

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Essay Two: Chicago Booth immerses you in a choice-rich environment. How have your interests, leadership experiences, and other passions influenced the choices in your life? (250 word minimum)
Chicago Booth is looking for self-aware leaders with a sense of purpose. If you are immersed in an environment that offers many choices, how do you find your own sense of direction? This is an opportunity to provide context for the choices that you have made and to tell the admissions committee about your leadership experiences.

This essay should communicate who you are and what motivates you. Also, provide concrete stories about your interests, leadership experiences and other passions. And describe why those experiences impacted your life choices.

This essay is an opportunity to describe personal and extracurricular examples as well as work accomplishments to present a full picture of who you are. Perhaps you chose your career path out of intellectual curiosity for the field, but you chose to work outside your home country because of a passion for travel and new experiences.

Describing both the personal and professional thought process and decision making structure will add more detail to give the admissions committee a holistic sense of you and your potential.

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Optional Essay:

Is there any unclear information in your application that needs further explanation? (300 word maximum)
This optional essay is flexible, allowing you to provide as much information as you need. Consider this essay if you have any areas that need to be explained in your profile. For example, some areas that may need to be explained are academic issues or gaps in work experience. If you have areas of concern like that, this is the ideal place to add more detail.

Because the essay is open-ended you can also use it to add any additional information you wanted to add to your application. Perhaps you have an interesting personal story that didn’t fit in the other essays. If it adds to your application and helps the admissions committee understand you, it may be worth telling. Also, you might have a strong leadership story or a meaningful extracurricular to add context to your MBA application.

Re-applicant Question:

Upon reflection, how has your perspective regarding your future, Chicago Booth, and/or getting an MBA changed since the time of your last application? (300 word maximum)
This is an interesting re-applicant question, because instead of asking how your candidacy has improved, Booth asks how your perspective has changed. This is more of a focus on your inner thoughts than your achievements. Improvements like better test scores, a promotion or a new job would still be useful information to communicate. However, the focus is to reflect on yourself and your goals since the last time you applied to Booth.

Consider how you have learned more about your career path, formed new relationships, or changed your future direction. This is an ideal essay to demonstrate self-awareness and leadership qualities. Another important angle is to communicate a realistic sense of how the Booth MBA fits into your future plans.

For more information on applying, visit the Chicago Booth admissions website.

The post Tuesday Tips: Booth MBA Essay Tips for 2019-2020 appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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Tuesday Tips: Darden MBA Essay Tips for 2019-2020  [#permalink]

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New post 18 Jun 2019, 05:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Tuesday Tips: Darden MBA Essay Tips for 2019-2020
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Are you applying to University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business this year? Make sure to read our Darden MBA essay tips to learn more about what Darden is looking for.

Leadership, international focus, and a sense of passion and purpose are important to the Darden admissions committee. In all of these essays you will want to communicate who you are and what motivates you. Also, consider both career and your personal life in your essays. The restrictive word counts can be challenging. Therefore, be focused and precise in your responses.

How should you highlight personal qualities in this set of essays? Consider that leadership is crucial to future Darden MBAs. In addition, teamwork is important to Darden, a school with a small, tight-knit community.

The case method is the primary teaching method at Darden, similar to Harvard Business School. Engaging with the case method requires the ability to communicate clearly and bring your perspective to the conversation.

Talking to a current student is a great way to learn more about Darden. So, the Darden admissions committee makes it easy for you to reach out to students directly on the admissions website.

Looking for perspective in your approach to your Darden MBA application? Contact us to discuss how Stacy Blackman Consulting can help with your MBA essays.

Darden MBA Essay Tips for 2019-2020
For the 2019-20 application cycle, Darden will again offer multiple short answer questions. The goal is to get to know all of the various facets of your background and personality.

1. Darden strives to identify and cultivate responsible leaders who follow their purpose. Please provide an example of a situation in which you have made a meaningful impact. (200 words)
This set of MBA essays provides a holistic view of your background, motivations and goals – and in some ways this question is a close companion to the career goals question at the end. When you examine your past leadership opportunities, what is the connecting thread? Are you a consensus builder or a director of projects? Do you keep the project running on time, or do you question the premise? What has been your style when dealing with difficult peers or bosses?

This example could be professional or extracurricular, but ideally describes a significant accomplishment that made an impact. Also, the impact could be big or small as long as it was meaningful to you and those around you. Ideally this example is an example of your larger interests and passions.

For example, if you are devoted to diversity, perhaps you started a mentoring program or funded internships for underrepresented employees. And the impact of that action may have been limited to your department or company. However, it shows your values and allows you to discuss how you would make a greater impact on the world.

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2. Diversity and inclusion are critical to our mission, and they work best when they are an integral and celebrated part of our community. Read University of Virginia’s Diversity & Inclusion Vision Statement. Share a time in which you engaged with a perspective, identity, community or experience that was different from your own and how it impacted your worldview. (200 words)
This question focuses specifically on diversity and inclusion. Therefore, you should consider your own record of engagement with a different community in your example. Also, consider any travel abroad experiences or a time when you lived or worked in a culture different from your own.

If you have not spent a significant amount of time outside your own country or culture, look at college or work. Many people live and work with different people at university or the workplace, and that can be a good source of examples. For example, perhaps you had a teammate who grew up outside your country. Did you learn more about your teammate’s culture? You may have learned more about holidays and celebrations, or perhaps experienced different attitudes about problem solving and community. Then, consider what this experience taught you about yourself.

3. The Batten Foundation Worldwide Scholarship provides all Darden students in our full-time MBA program with an opportunity to participate in a Darden Worldwide Course. If you could choose any location in the world, where would you want to travel, and why? (50 words)
To learn more about Darden’s international programs, visit the Darden website. You can connect with an international location by participating in short visits through a Global Immersion Course or Global Topic Course, spend a semester abroad with an Exchange Program, or work directly with an international business as part of the Global Client Courses.

While Darden describes the current programs and countries on the website, this MBA essay question asks for your ideal location and why you are interested in it. Your interest in a particular region could be personal or professional and should have an academic basis.

The focus of these international programs is to learn more about the world of business beyond the United States. Therefore, with that context what would you like to know and where would you like to learn it?

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4. Tell us what you would want your learning team to know about you – personally, professionally, or both? (100 words)
Darden is a community, and the learning team is the smallest unit of that community. You will be assigned a team of diverse classmates to meet before class and discuss your case assignments. The purpose of these discussions is to ensure that all of you are prepared to participate in the class discussion. Ideally the learning team is a supportive environment and allows everyone to learn and express their own point of view.

This essay allows you to introduce yourself to the Darden community while imagining that you are speaking only to a small group of your peers. What should your learning team know about your background? What diverse perspective will you bring to the learning environment? Perhaps you have a unique professional background that will be new to your teammates.

You may be from an underrepresented region of the world, or you have an interesting personal background. In just a few words, describe what you think will set you apart from your peers and be interesting for the team to know about you. To learn more about your potential classmates, talk to a student ambassador or review Darden’s MBA Student Stories.

5. What is your short-term, post-MBA goal and why? (150 words)
This question focuses specifically on your short-term career goal. But since you are likely taking that next step in order to set the groundwork for your larger career goals it is entirely appropriate to describe your overall career aspirations. Because in the previous questions in this set of essays you have described your personality, motivations, impact and accomplishments, your career goals should fit seamlessly into that story.

Do not be intimidated by career goals questions if you are still exploring what you want to do with your life. Darden offers intensive career counseling and you will have an opportunity to explore many career paths in school. Therefore, the essay question seeks to understand why you are pursuing this path and what you hope to get out of it.

The goal is to understand how you think and plan, and what motivates your career decisions. If you are inspired by what you have experienced as a leader and as someone who has a positive impact on others, that inspiration should be part of your career aspirations as well. Darden will help you refine your goals and learn the skills you need.

The post Tuesday Tips: Darden MBA Essay Tips for 2019-2020 appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors

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What’s Your Wish with Suzanne Ginestro, CMO of Quest Nutrition  [#permalink]

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New post 19 Jun 2019, 06:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: What’s Your Wish with Suzanne Ginestro, CMO of Quest Nutrition
 In our interview series What’s Your Wish, we bring you career and life insights from inspiring business leaders. Find out how they landed where they are today. What makes them tick. How they have overcome obstacles and found success. Advice they would offer to recent graduates. And always, what is their wish for young professionals.
Meet Suzanne Ginestro, Chief Marketing Officer at Quest Nutrition.
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What’s the highlight of your career so far?
I wasn’t planning to have a successful career like this. It wasn’t in my master plan to become a Chief Marketing Officer. To be honest, I always thought that I would feel satisfied once I reached a Brand Manager level. Then, I would just work a little and be home a lot. So, for me, the highlight of my career came when I had the realization that I wanted…and could have…it all…a successful and fulfilling career AND motherhood.

After giving birth to my first child, I thought I wanted to pull back and stay at home. After six months of maternity leave, though, I realized that I missed working. I missed having something that was just for me. I missed the intellectual challenges. I missed the strategic thinking and problem solving. I missed getting feedback, guidance and praise. I missed earning money on my own. I missed my friends and realized that work (and work colleagues) were a huge part of my life and of my identity.

I was not the same person without it. So, I went back to work, got a big piece of myself back, and then began to thrive. My career has far exceeded my expectations because I always followed my heart and my belly. When I was unhappy, I made a change. When I was happy, accomplishment and success seemed to follow me.

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Is there anything you wish people knew about your company or your role?
Being a leader can be lonely at times, and there’s immense pressure because everyone’s looking at you to have all of the answers. More often than not, you aren’t 100% sure that what you decide is the right path. But, you have to lead with confidence and trust that your instincts and experience will help you make good choices. Sometimes it will work for you, and sometimes it will work against you, and as a leader you have to be willing to take those risks and learn from your mistakes.

What surprised you most about your current role?
Before I came to Quest, I didn’t fully realize the strength of this brand. I thought it was well-liked, but I under-estimated the level of passion and loyalty that Quest fans have for these products. Quest has a big following of people who like to talk about the impact that Quest has had on their life – from small lifestyle changes to huge body transformations. The stories are unbelievably real and authentic.

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I’ve been in brand marketing for over 20 years, and I’ve worked across a lot of brands…but I have never seen brand love at this depth before. You can’t build this type of brand passion from an ad campaign or a clever tagline. It’s a deeply-rooted part of the brand DNA and my job is to protect and honor that authentic brand love.

How do you increase motivation when you are just not feeling it?
As an extrovert and a “feeler,” I am typically the executive leader in the room who does a lot of the talking. On any given day, you’ll find me presenting new ideas, reporting on our business results, or simply pumping up the team to make them feel supported and heard. But, there are certainly moments when I don’t feel inspired or up to the task of inspiring others. For me, it’s obvious when I’m not feeling it, and it’s hard to fake it.

But, I’m a very transparent leader and I believe it’s OK to show your vulnerabilities at times.That means that I’m not afraid to tell my team that I’m just not feeling it or that we need a time out. In general, they seem to appreciate the candor and it helps them realize that I am human.

In times like this, I’ve been known to host a “town hall” or “fireside chat” with the team (sort of like a therapy session) to get all of the dirty laundry or baggage out in the air. I find that when we talk things out, and collectively acknowledge what’s wrong, we solve half the battle.

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What have you found helps you in terms of organization or productivity?
I do my best work when I’m organized and prepared. To keep myself organized at work (and at home), I make hand-written checklists and I always love the feeling of crossing things off of the list. It makes me feel productive.

I have tried to use digital notes, but that format just doesn’t work for me. There’s something about the act of writing it down on paper that makes it more tangible and real, and it’s much easier for me to keep track of my to-dos if they are visibly in front of me.

I keep my list in a notebook so that I can always go back to it when I need to remember a fact or what happened on a certain day. Also, I am a stickler about keeping my email inbox up-to-date. I open my emails daily and always try to respond immediately so that they don’t fall down and get lost in my inbox later.  I am the type of person who likes to stay on top of things, so I do whatever I can to prepare for things in advance so that I’m not caught in a pinch later.

What obstacles or stumbles have you faced in your career and what have you learned?
The biggest obstacle I faced in my career was when I was working for a CEO who didn’t have any real operating experience or understanding of how to build a brand. He was very difficult to work for because he criticized every idea I brought to the table and would frequently change his mind on what he wanted.

It was extremely frustrating because I was unable to complete any programs and he always pulled the plug halfway through a project. As a result, I was not performing at my best. At one point, he told me that I didn’t deserve to have “brand” in my title, which was extremely demoralizing.

I hated going to work every day and it made me question whether or not I wanted to work at all.  So, I quit. It was the first and only time I quit a job without having another job waiting for me. It was frightening, and I was unsure what was next for me.

But then…
Four weeks later, I was recruited by a visionary leader to come build a new marketing organization. I hesitated before saying yes because I had lost confidence in myself. But the offer and the opportunity was so compelling that I decided to give myself a chance. That next role was the role that defined my career and ultimately led me to become a CMO.

I opened a new office and was responsible for everything from hiring the people to picking out the furniture and décor. Every time I thought we were set, something happened, and we had to expand more.

Before I knew it, I had a team of 40 people and managed an office expansion and remodel—all while simultaneously running a business that was growing double-digits. I went from my lowest low to my highest high in the matter of one year…and it was all driven by the person who I worked for. When I worked for someone who I didn’t respect, I lost my confidence and I forgot what I was capable of.

But, when I worked with someone inspiring, who believed in me, and who let me do my thing, I soared. So, the lesson here is that I need to always trust my belly. If something doesn’t feel right, it’s not right. For me, success comes when I am happy. And, happiness comes when I feel valued, respected and supported.

How do you turn off when you leave the office?
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I don’t turn off. Ever. Toggling between work and home is a constant for me. Some people call it work/life “balance,” but I call it work/life “integration.” That means that the lines blur between when I’m working and when I’m “mom-ing.” It’s important to me to be at my kids’ school, tennis matches and baseball games, but it’s also important to be accessible for my team. I don’t want to let anyone down…on either end.

That means that sometimes I come in late, sometimes I leave early, sometimes my kids come to work with me, and sometimes I work from home. Essentially, it means that I am always on. Work is not a 9-5 thing for me. It’s continuous. Just like being a mom is continuous. There’s no start and stop. It’s fluid and integrated. My work is part of my life and my life is part of my work. My family knows my colleagues and my colleagues know my family.

For me, it works best when the two puzzle pieces come together as one. I do find a little peace and quiet when I am by myself, in the car, commuting to/from the office. I actually enjoy the drive time because it’s the only time that I am not multitasking and sometimes I just blast the music and sing at the top of my lungs (I’m not a very good singer, but thankfully no one else can hear me!).

Do you have any recs for free time?
When you’re juggling a career and a family, it’s important to always find time to refuel your body and soul. For me, that’s what boxing is for. It has become not only the best workout I’ve ever had, but it’s also therapy for me. Punching mitts is cathartic and it helps release tension, emotion and baggage. I highly recommend it, and discovering your own strength and force may surprise you. I was, and now I can’t live without it.

Best advice you have received?
I like to get to know the people I work with and I often consider them friends. But sometimes, becoming close friends with the people who work for you can get tricky. It stuck with me when one boss explained that as you grow in your career, you have to be careful with getting too close to the people who work for you because it’s hard to be a real leader if people think you are their peer. At times, you’ll need to have tough conversations. Being too buddy-buddy with the people who work for you could ultimately impact your judgment and ability to make tough decisions.

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What should a recent grad be looking for in a new career opportunity?
At the beginning of your working career, I believe it’s most important to look for options that provide breadth of experience and exposure to as much as possible so that you can figure out where your sweet spot is. It’s hard to know specifically what you want to be from the get-go. So don’t pigeon hole yourself into one specific area right out of the gate.

Look for opportunities that provide exposure to various types of industries, functions, and people.Building basic business skills is a must for anyone who wants to be in a senior leadership role someday. Look for stable, profitable, and growing businesses that you know are going to be around in five years.

Taking risks on start-ups and new ventures early on in your career is, well, risky. It can be really great, or really horrible. At the start you want reliability, stability, and a place that has people with experience who are willing to help you grow and learn. A big title gets you nowhere if you haven’t spent the time building the skills and experience required to make sound business decisions.

What’s your wish for young professionals on the road to success?
My wish for young professionals is that they understand that they will need to work hard to realize their full potential. And sometimes, their full potential is much greater than what they think it is. I’ve never promoted someone who is lazy, sloppy or entitled. Success is earned.

The best employees are the ones who take assignments seriously and who always go above and beyond what is asked for. A can-do attitude, willingness to learn and grow, and a little humility goes a long way.

***

Don’t miss our first What’s Your Wish interview, Money, Meaning, and the MBA, with UCLA Anderson Marketing Professor Dr Cassie Mogilner Holmes.

The post What’s Your Wish with Suzanne Ginestro, CMO of Quest Nutrition appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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NYU Stern MBA Essays for 2019-2020  [#permalink]

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New post 19 Jun 2019, 10:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: NYU Stern MBA Essays for 2019-2020
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Is New York University’s Stern School of Business on your list of target MBA programs? Then get ready to hit the ground running. The NYU Stern MBA essays for the 2019-2020 admissions season have been announced!

But first, a note from Stern AdComm:

Our Stern essay questions give you the opportunity to more fully present yourself to the Admissions Committee and to provide insight into your experiences, goals, and thought processes.

Your essays must be written entirely by you. An offer of admission will be rescinded if you did not write your essays.

NYU Stern MBA Essays for the 2019-2020 Cycle
Essay 1: Professional Aspirations
(500 word maximum, double-spaced, 12-point font)

  • What are your short and long-term career goals?
  • How will the MBA help you achieve them?
Essay 2: Personal Experience (aka “Pick Six”)
Describe yourself to the Admissions Committee and to your future classmates using six images and corresponding captions. Your uploaded PDF should contain all of the following elements:

  • A brief introduction or overview of your “Pick Six” (no more than 3 sentences).
  • Six images that help illustrate who you are.
  • A one-sentence caption for each of the six images that helps explain why they were selected and are significant to you.
Note: Your visuals may include photos, infographics, drawings, or any other images that best describe you. Your document must be uploaded as a single PDF. The essay cannot be sent in physical form or be linked to a website.

Essay 3: Additional Information (Optional) 
(250 word maximum, double-spaced, 12-point font)

Please provide any additional information that you would like to bring to the attention of the Admissions Committee. This may include current or past gaps in employment, further explanation of your undergraduate record or self-reported academic transcript(s), plans to retake the GMAT, GRE, IELTS or TOEFL, or any other relevant information.

If you are planning to attend the Langone Part-time MBA program and do not currently live in the NYC Metro Area or the Westchester area, please indicate your plans to pursue the program. If you are planning to relocate to the NYC area, please indicate your plans for employment.

For more information on applying, please visit the NYU Stern MBA admissions website. If you need guidance on your Stern MBA application, or wish to discuss your MBA plans, reach out for a complimentary analysis of your candidacy. We’re here to help!

The post NYU Stern MBA Essays for 2019-2020 appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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NYU Stern MBA Deadlines for 2019-2020  [#permalink]

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New post 19 Jun 2019, 10:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: NYU Stern MBA Deadlines for 2019-2020
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Is the New York University Stern School of Business on your shortlist of target MBA programs? Then get ready to mark your calendar. The NYU Stern MBA deadlines for the 2019-2020 admissions season have been announced!

NYU Stern MBA Deadlines
Round 1
Application due: October 15, 2019

Initial notification: January 1, 2020

Round 2
Application due: November 15, 2019

Initial notification: February 1, 2020

Round 3
Application due: January 15, 2020

Initial notification: April 1, 2020

Round 4
Application due: March 15, 2020

Initial notification: June 1, 2020

Your application must be submitted by 11:59 p.m. U.S. Eastern Time on the day of the deadline.

The 2019-2020 application is now open. For more information on applying, please visit the NYU Stern MBA admissions website. If you need guidance on your Stern MBA application, or wish to discuss your MBA plans, reach out for a complimentary analysis of your candidacy. We’re here to help!

The post NYU Stern MBA Deadlines for 2019-2020 appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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Yale MBA Essay for 2019-2020  [#permalink]

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New post 19 Jun 2019, 13:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Yale MBA Essay for 2019-2020
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Is the Yale School of Management on your list of target MBA programs? Then get ready to hit the ground running. The Yale MBA essay for the 2019-2020 admissions season has been announced! Reapplicants should note that it remains unchanged from last year’s prompt.

Required Yale MBA Essay
Describe the biggest commitment you have ever made. (500 words)

This is the third year that Yale SOM has asked this question. Assistant dean for admissions Bruce Delmonico explains that it evolved from a conversation with Professor of Organizational Behavior Amy Wrzesniewski.  Professor Wrzesniewski noted, “Reading about future plans is helpful, but actions speak louder than words.”

Delmonico says the following: “In your response, we are looking to learn about how you have approached a particular commitment, whether personal or professional, and the behaviors that support it. You should be less concerned about what we want to hear and instead focus on being honest with yourself in selecting and describing the commitment that has been most significant to you.”

***

The online application will be available in early July. For more information on applying, please visit the Yale SOM admissions website. If you need guidance on your Yale MBA essay and application, or wish to discuss your business school plans, reach out for a complimentary analysis of your candidacy. We’re here to help!

The post Yale MBA Essay for 2019-2020 appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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Emory MBA Essays for 2019-2020  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Jun 2019, 10:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Emory MBA Essays for 2019-2020
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Are you interested in Emory University’s Goizueta Business School? Then it’s time to start brainstorming! The Emory MBA essays for the 2019-2020 application season have been announced.

Instructions for the Emory MBA Essays
Complete all required essays, following the word limits indicated for each question. The essays must be answered and submitted for your application to be considered complete. Remember to review each question carefully.

We consider essays to be a very important part of the application process, and they are your opportunity to show the Admissions Committee a bit about yourself beyond the application itself. Applicants who apply to more than one MBA program will only complete the essay question requirement related to their first-preference program.

Essay One: Post-MBA Career Goals
Define your short-term post-MBA career goals. How are your professional strengths, past experience, and personal attributes aligned with these goals? (300 word limit)

Essay Two: Leadership in Business
The business school is named for Roberto C. Goizueta, former Chairman and CEO of The Coca-Cola Company, who led the organization for 16 years, extending its global reach, quadrupling consumption, building brand responsibility, and creating unprecedented shareholder wealth.

Roberto Goizueta’s core values guide us in educating Principled Leaders for Global Enterprise. Provide an example of your leadership in a professional setting and explain what you learned about yourself through the experience. (300 word limit)

Video Essay
Please select ONE of the following topics to share with us using the video essay feature. Your comments should last no more than 60 seconds and you have the option to re-record until you are satisfied, before submitting.

  • Of Goizueta Business School’s core values (Courage, Integrity, Accountability, Rigor, Diversity, Team, Community), which one resonates the most with you and why?
  • What is the best advice you have received and how have you used it in your life or career?
  • Outside of family and work, what is something that you are passionate about and why?
Upload Video Essay to Application

Additional Information
Should you feel there is an important part of your story missing from your application (e.g., unexplained gaps in work experience, choice of recommenders, academic probation issues), please use this section to provide a brief explanation. We ask that you limit your response to 100 words; responses in bullet point format are preferred.

Reapplicant Essays
Applicants who have applied to Goizueta Business School in the past are required to answer the following questions:

  • Define your short-term post-MBA career goals. How are your professional strengths, past experience and personal attributes aligned with these goals? (300 word limit)
  • Explain how you have improved your candidacy for Goizueta Business School’s MBA since your last application. (250 word limit)
***

For more information on applying, please visit the Emory MBA admissions website. If you need guidance on your Emory MBA essays and application, or wish to discuss your business school plans, reach out for a complimentary analysis of your candidacy. We’re here to help!

The post Emory MBA Essays for 2019-2020 appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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Cambridge MBA Essays for 2019-2020  [#permalink]

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New post 20 Jun 2019, 10:01
FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Cambridge MBA Essays for 2019-2020
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Are you interested in the MBA program at University of Cambridge Judge Business School? The get ready to start brainstorming! Here are the Cambridge MBA essays for the 2019-2020 admissions cycle.

Cambridge MBA Essays
  • Please provide a personal statement. It should not exceed 500 words and must address the following questions:
    • What are your short and long term career objectives and what skills/characteristics do you already have that will help you achieve them?
    • What actions will you take before and during the MBA to contribute to your career outcome?
    • If you are unsure of your post-MBA career path, how will the MBA equip you for the future?
  • What did you learn from your most spectacular failure? (200 words)
  • Describe a situation where you had to work jointly with others to achieve a common goal. What did you learn from the experience? (up to 200 words)
***

Admissions for the 2020/21 class will open in mid-July 2019. All applications are due by 23:59 GMT. For additional information on applying, please visit the Cambridge Judge admissions website.

If you need guidance on your Cambridge MBA essays, or wish to discuss your business school plans, reach out for a complimentary analysis of your candidacy. We’re here to help!

The post Cambridge MBA Essays for 2019-2020 appeared first on Stacy Blackman Consulting - MBA Admissions Consulting.

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Cambridge MBA Essays for 2019-2020   [#permalink] 20 Jun 2019, 10:01

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