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Stacy Blackman Consulting Representative
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Curious About Working with an Admissions Counsultant? Join Us for GMAC [#permalink]
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Curious About Working with an Admissions Counsultant? Join Us for GMAC’s Google Hangout!


If you’re working on your b-school application, you won’t want to miss our Q&A session during the Graduate Management Admission Council‘s (GMAC) upcoming Google Hangout, Behind the Scenes with MBA Admission Consultants, on Thursday, July 28 at 1pm EDT. 

Hosted by Eric Chambers, GMAC’s Market Development Director and former Wharton School MBA admissions representative, you’ll have a chance to ask your burning application questions, as well as learn about SBC’s consulting philosophy and approach to the MBA admissions process.

Register today and mark your calendar for what’s sure to be an enlightening conversation!

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UCLA Anderson School Fall 2017 MBA Essay Topic [#permalink]
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: UCLA Anderson School Fall 2017 MBA Essay Topic


The UCLA Anderson School of Management has confirmed the required essay topic remains unchanged for the 2016-2017 MBA admissions season.

First-Time Applicants—One Required Essay:
We believe that the best results are achieved when you share success, think fearlessly and drive change.  With this in mind, what are your goals at UCLA Anderson and in your short-term and long-term career? (750 words maximum)

Optional Essay:
The following essay is optional. No preference is given in the evaluation process to applicants who submit an optional essay. Please note that we only accept written essays.

Are there any extenuating circumstances in your profile about which the Admissions Committee should be aware? Please use your best judgment. (250 words maximum)

Re-Applicants—One Required Essay: 
Reapplicants who applied for the class entering in 2015 or 2016 are required to complete the following essay:

Please describe your career progress since you last applied and ways in which you have enhanced your candidacy. Include updates on short-term and long-term career goals, as well as your continued interest in UCLA Anderson. (750 words maximum)

***

According to admissions officer Craig Hubbell’s post last season on the MBA Insider Blog, “The best essays show that you understand our school’s culture and how to use it to optimize your future.”

When approaching this essay, applicants should think about their long-term goals and work backward to show how Anderson will help them reach those goals; brainstorm professional or personal events that demonstrate thinking fearlessly; and convince the admissions committee of their passion for UCLA Anderson.

The admissions officer shares several other tips for applicants as well, so if UCLA Anderson is on your short list of schools, take a look at his post and start thinking about how you’ll make a case for your candidacy. “Whatever your target may be, your essay is the platform to distinguish yourself with your passion, clarity, planning and eloquence,” Hubbell writes.

For more information, please visit the UCLA Anderson MBA admissions website.

You may also be interested in:
UCLA Anderson School of Management Fall 2017 MBA Application Deadlines

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SBC Survey Results: More MBA Applicants Drawn to Consulting, Swayed by [#permalink]
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: SBC Survey Results: More MBA Applicants Drawn to Consulting, Swayed by Scholarships

More than 50% of business school applicants say they would attend a less desirable program if awarded a scholarship, according to SBC’s annual survey of MBA applicants.

Our survey also reported that a post-MBA career in consulting (47.9%) was the top pick, up from 39.2% last year.

After consulting, finance is the most popular post-MBA career choice, according to 26.75% of respondents this year, up from 18.37% last year.

Interest in entrepreneurship continues to grow, capturing 26.47% this year, compared to 24% last year. Technology is also a popular career choice, with 23.11 % planning to pursue a career in technology according to this year’s study.

The survey also reported that 37.69% of applicants plan to apply to five or more schools this year, down from the 44.9% that planned to apply to that many schools last year. Last year, 17.1% planned to apply to six schools and 23.34% to five schools.

At the same time, traditional two-year, full-time programs continue to be the most popular, with 85.75% of respondents considering two-year programs, 35% considering one-year programs, 14.51% considering part-time options, and only 4.13% planning to apply to online programs.

Reduced application requirements (fewer and shorter essays) motivated 51.8% of respondents to apply to more schools (down from 60.49% last year).

While video essays and interviews have become more common in the application process, they don’t get high marks from prospective students, with only 11.48% indicating video-based application elements represented them “extremely well,” 39.65% “well,” and 32.98% indicating such requirements are “limited.”

Other survey results include:
*49.47% of respondents indicated reputation is the most important factor influencing their decision to attend a particular business school, followed by 17.38% for strength of job placement, 12.7% for the culture of the program, and 8.56% for the strength of a school’s alumni network.

*Career advancement continued to rank as the top reason to attend business school at 47.76% (44.95% ranking it as most important last year), followed by career change at 32.31% (compared to 34.02%  of respondents last year).

*Interest in the GRE declined, with only 8.95% planning to take it this year, compared to 10.91% last year. Whereas 91.05% plan to take the GMAT this year, compared to 89.09% last year.

The survey was conducted with 751 respondents between May 1 and May 31, 2016. For more of my thoughts and reactions to these survey results, check out my interview with Poets & Quants.

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Chicago Booth Dean Kumar Named Provost at Johns Hopkins [#permalink]
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Chicago Booth Dean Kumar Named Provost at Johns Hopkins
Johns Hopkins University has announced that Sunil Kumar, dean of the Chicago Booth School of Business, will become its 15th provost and senior vice president for academic affairs, effective September 1, 2016.

“Sunil is a proven academic leader with uncompromising standards for excellence, great integrity, and a deep-seated commitment to collaboration,” says President Ronald J. Daniels. “He is a scholar and leader passionate about higher education, committed to values that align with the priorities of the Johns Hopkins Ten by Twenty‘ strategic vision, and well-suited to be a steward and champion of this extraordinary institution.”


In five years as dean at Chicago Booth, Kumar helped raise more than $300 million in philanthropic support; focused on student recruitment, including increasing the enrollment of women in full-time programs from 35 percent to 42 percent; and expanded courses for undergraduates.

The dean was also instrumental in establishing the newly consolidated Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, which helps researchers across the university translate ideas, discoveries, and new technology into products and start-up businesses.

As JHU provost, Kumar will work with the president and deans on university-wide interdisciplinary collaboration, academic policy, and key priorities including diversity, student aid, and commitment to the communities surrounding Johns Hopkins’ campuses.

“I look forward to helping Johns Hopkins continue to attract the best faculty and students, while strengthening a welcoming, inclusive, and scholarly environment at the university,” says Kumar. “Ensuring Johns Hopkins is the home of choice of a diverse and talented group of faculty members and students is important to me.”

“I feel that the professional schools and the rest of the university have a complementary and symbiotic relationship,” Kumar adds. “I am deeply attracted to the opportunity to support the faculty and students at Johns Hopkins as it moves closer to the ‘one university’ ideal.”

For more information on this new appointment, please read theoriginal article on the Johns Hopkins University website.

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How to Organize Your MBA Essays [#permalink]
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: How to Organize Your MBA Essays
Have you heard of the STAR interview technique? It’s when an interviewer asks you a behavioral question (which usually begins, “Tell me about a time when you…”) and you respond by laying out the Situation, the Task you were given, the Action you took, and then the Result you achieved. It’s an excellent method for MBA hopefuls to leverage in adcom or alumni interviews.

But the STAR technique shouldn’t be thought of as only an interview-response strategy. We’ve found that it’s also a helpful way to organize essays, short-answer responses and even resume bullet points.

For example, let’s take an essay that asks you to describe your greatest professional achievement—in only 300 words. The STAR method helps you pare down all of the information you could possibly include.

You’ll want to set up the Situation for your reader as succinctly and clearly as possible. Leave out industry jargon, acronyms, and “inside baseball” details that the adcom is unlikely to care about. Remember, they want to learn about what YOU did—not the intricate complexities of your company or client’s issue.

Next, pinpoint exactly what Task you were responsible for. Sure, business schools are looking for team players, but if they’ve asked you to describe your most impressive accomplishment, they want to understand precisely what your marching orders were.

The Action section is where you should expand a bit more. This is your chance to shine by explaining exactly what you did, and ideally showing how you went above and beyond in your role. Then you can wrap up by revealing what Results you achieved. Keep in mind that both qualitative and quantitative outcomes are important to include if possible.

After you’ve got your S, T, A and R information covered in your essay, take a read through it again to ensure the emphasis is on the Actions you took and the the Results you achieved. We know it’s hard to condense what may sometimes be a years-long project into only a few sentences at the beginning, but it’s better to keep the focus on why YOU will be a welcome addition to any MBA program.

Your final task is to ensure that you’re within the word count limit and that you’ve told the story of your achievement in a compelling, memorable way.

Remember:



 

 

 

 

 

 

Do not miss this event! Stacy Blackman Consulting and GMAC® are teaming up on July 28 at 1 p.m. ET to discuss and answer questions about the MBA admissions process. Register here (it’s free!).

***Do you want to stay on top of the application process with timely tips like these? Please subscribe to our weekly newsletter and you’ll receive our expert advice straight in your mailbox before it appears on the blog, plus special offers, promotions, discounts, invitations to events, and more.

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Tuesday Tips: Dartmouth Tuck Fall 2017 MBA Essay Tips [#permalink]
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Tuesday Tips: Dartmouth Tuck Fall 2017 MBA Essay Tips
The Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth has a small student body and a rural location, combined with world-class faculty and academic focus. As you approach your Dartmouth Tuck MBA application it will be important to consistently show how you will fit into the school values of leadership, teamwork and collaboration and bring your own unique qualities and experiences to the community. This revised set of essays focuses on global approach as a significant value as well.

The Tuck admissions blog offers the following advice: “There are no right or wrong answers. We encourage applicants to limit the length of their responses to 500 to 700 words for Essay #1 and 500 words for Essay #2. Please double-space your responses.”

Stacy Blackman Consulting has worked with many successful Tuck applicants, contact us to learn more about the customized assistance we can provide for your application.

Essay One (Required): Tuck educates wise leaders who better the world of business. What are your short- and long-term goals? How will a Tuck MBA enable you to become a wise leader with global impact?

Tuck has updated the career goals essay to include a question about your global vision and impact on the world of business. Consistent with a standard MBA career goals essay you must also outline your short- and long-term career goals. Your short-term goals are the aspirations you have for your job immediately after graduation, while your long-term goals may be 10 or 20 years after you complete your MBA.

As you consider how you will make a global impact in your career, you should incorporate “Why Tuck” as a crucial element. Make sure you have researched the school’s programs and determined how your education will help you achieve your goals.

For example, Tuck has multiple global business programs, including a class where you can consult to an international company and short Global Insight Expeditions. By reaching out to current students and alumni you can learn more about the experiences and classes that would inform your development as a global leader.

Essay Two (Required): As a diverse and global community, our students arrive at the same place from many different paths. Tell us about an experience in which you have had to live, learn and/or work with other people very different from yourself. What challenges and/or opportunities did you experience, how did you respond, and what did you learn about yourself as a result?

The new required Essay Two also seeks to understand your global awareness and ability to learn and grow from those with different backgrounds. This essay prompt is open ended and allows you to choose an example from work or from an extracurricular experience. Think broadly about your background and when you have expanded your world by interacting with someone very different.

A compelling narrative will demonstrate learning and growing through interacting with others. Think about a time when you were truly challenged by a person or group of people different from yourself, and how you resolved the experience.

What did you learn about yourself and others? Interacting with your Tuck classmates may challenge you in a similar way, and showing a growth mentality would be attractive to the admissions committee.

This essay is not only an opportunity to discuss your ability to learn from others, you can also show that you are a leader in the Tuck tradition. The Tuck School of Business definition of leadership is inherently collaborative. Team based experiences are preferable, and as you describe working with someone different from yourself you can likely work in a strong leadership example.

Essay Three (Optional): Please provide any additional insight or information that you have not addressed elsewhere that may be helpful in reviewing your application (e.g., unusual choice of evaluators, weaknesses in academic performance, unexplained job gaps or changes, etc.). Complete this question only if you feel your candidacy is not fully represented by this application.

This is your opportunity to discuss any perceived weaknesses in your application such as low GPA or gaps in your work experience. When approaching a question of this nature, focus on explanations rather than excuses and explain what you have done since the event you are explaining to demonstrate your academic ability or management potential.

You could potentially use this space to add something new that was not covered in the previous essays or in the application, resume or recommendations, however use your judgment about the topics as Tuck asks that you only complete this question if you “feel your candidacy is not fully represented by this application.”

Essay Four (Required from Reapplicants): How have you strengthened your candidacy since you last applied? Please reflect on how you have grown personally and professionally.

If you are re-applying to Tuck this essay is the place for you to showcase any developments since your last application. Ideally you have concrete improvements like a stronger GMAT score, grades from business classes, or a promotion. Even if nothing quantitative has changed in your profile you likely have developed more leadership activities or progressed in your job responsibilities.

If you are struggling to think of any clear improvements you can describe refined goals or deeper thinking about your future that has led you to apply again to Tuck. Demonstrating growth in maturity or introspection can be a huge improvement to your application and absolutely should be highlighted.

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Tuesday Tips: Columbia Business School Fall 2017 MBA Application Essay [#permalink]
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Tuesday Tips: Columbia Business School Fall 2017 MBA Application Essay Tips


Columbia Business School is highly concerned about fit and your knowledge of the program. New York City is another aspect of the school that pervades its culture and defines some of the unique opportunities of the program.

Thorough school research is crucial to your preparation for this application. Before you get started with this set of essays it will be helpful to brainstorm your career objectives, strengths and weaknesses, and to review the personal elements you will want to discuss.

Columbia offers several flexible options for admission, from full time MBA programs starting in the Fall, to a January entry session and an excellent executive MBA program. Columbia also offers an early decision option for candidates that are committed to attend the school.

Stumped by the Columbia essays? Contact Stacy Blackman Consulting to learn how we can help.

Goal: What is your immediate post-MBA professional goal? (50 characters)

This is a simple question, but may require you to condense your career goals into one clear career vision statement. Columbia presents several examples on their website, all of which have some unique aspect.

Rather than a generic statement like: “Work in finance” the goal is to infuse some specificity. Something like: “Work in real estate finance within a private equity firm” tells the admissions committee far more about your interests and goals.

Note that the limited character count is intended to get you to the point quickly and that all of the examples Columbia has provided are concise and lack any elaboration.

Essay #1: Through your resume and recommendations, we have a clear sense of your professional path to date. What are your career goals going forward, and how will the Columbia MBA help you achieve them? (100-750 words)

Remember that this essay has two purposes: demonstrate that you know why you are interested in Columbia, and showcase why you are an excellent fit for the program. Both goals should be kept in mind as you answer the question.

This question is entirely future focused and specifically asks you to get away from a recitation of your resume. Spend the majority of the space describing your career goals and what you envision you will learn and experience at Columbia to help you achieve your goals.

As you talk about your future you may need to refer to your past career and personal experiences. As you consider what to say make sure you are citing only relevant examples from your career. Think about the experiences you can describe that were truly pivotal and can support your future goals.

For example, perhaps you want to be a general manager of a company or division, and right now you have been working primarily in marketing. You might spend your time at Columbia learning about finance and strategy, being part of consulting projects and interning at a start up to round out your experience and start on your general management path.

Make sure your goals are both achievable and aspirational and that you have specifics about Columbia to support your assertion that it is the right place for you.

Essay #2: Columbia Business School’s students participate in industry focused New York immersion seminars; in project based Master Classes; and in school year internships. Most importantly, they are taught by a combination of distinguished research faculty and accomplished practitioners. How will you take advantage of being “at the very center of business”? (100-500 Words)

Columbia is a school that prides itself in the unique opportunities available in New York City (“the very center of business”) As you address this question make sure your answer is tailored to your individual goals for learning and career.

You should consider the industry you plan to enter, and either the important adjunct professors from that industry at Columbia or the access to major companies from that industry in New York City.

Consider your personal interests and how you might pursue them in the diversity of such an international city, and also the ways that Columbia’s alumni network can provide opportunities within the metropolitan area.

A mix of personal and professional interests may be covered in this topic, and you may want to emphasize either one of those angles depending on the answers you present to the other core questions.

Essay #3: CBS Matters, a key element of the School’s culture, allows the people in your Cluster to learn more about you on a personal level. What will your Clustermates be pleasantly surprised to learn about you? (100-250 Words)

If you watch the linked video, you’ll see that CBS Matters is a part of the Columbia cluster experience that centers around a personal presentation. This essay is entirely about your life story and how you will be perceived by your peers at Columbia.

If you did not cover anything personal in the prior two essays this is your opportunity to stand out from the pack of other applicants.

This essay is somewhat about what matters most to you, and what you would share if asked who you really are. Dig deep into your passions and background and find the aspects that resonate emotionally with you and seem to convey a truth about who you really are.

If you are stumped by this essay prompt you may want to ask friends, family members or colleagues what they view as interesting and unique about you.

Once you have ideas about how to approach this question make sure that you are describing something about yourself that will be interesting both to your peers and to the admissions committee.

Something that is a passion point for you and that demonstrates a bit more about your background and motivations will likely be interesting both your clustermates and the admissions committee.

Image credit: Columbia Business School
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Georgetown MBA Program Fall 2017 Application Deadlines, Essay Question [#permalink]
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Georgetown MBA Program Fall 2017 Application Deadlines, Essay Questions


Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business has published the MBA application deadlines and essay questions for the 2016-2017 admissions season.

Deadlines
Round 1

Application due: October 10, 2016

Decision released: December 20, 2016

Round 2

Application due: January 5, 2017

Decision released: March 25, 2017

Round 3

Application due: April 1, 2017

Decision released: May 15, 2017

All applications are due by 5 p.m. ET on the deadline day.

MBA Essay Questions
Essay one: We would like to learn more about you. Please answer the following essay question in 750 words or less: “Why You?”

Optional essay one: If you are not currently employed full-time, use this essay to provide information about your current activities. (250 words or fewer)

Optional essay two: Please provide any information you would like to add to your application that you have not otherwise included. (500 words or fewer)

Re-Applicant Essay: (required only for re-applicants) How have you strengthened your candidacy since your last application? We are particularly interested in hearing about how you have grown professionally and personally. (500 words or fewer)

For more information, please visit the Georgetown MBA admissions website.

Image credit: Georgetown McDonough School of Business
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Georgetown MBA Program Fall 2017 Application Deadlines [#permalink]
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Georgetown MBA Program Fall 2017 Application Deadlines


Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business has published the MBA application deadlines for the 2016-2017 admissions season.

Deadlines
Round 1

Application due: October 10, 2016

Decision released: December 20, 2016

Round 2

Application due: January 5, 2017

Decision released: March 25, 2017

Round 3

Application due: April 1, 2017

Decision released: May 15, 2017

All applications are due by 5 p.m. ET on the deadline day.

For more information, please visit the Georgetown MBA admissions website.

Image credit: Georgetown McDonough School of Business
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Financial Times Best B-Schools for Entrepreneurship [#permalink]
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Financial Times Best B-Schools for Entrepreneurship

Are you itching to start your own company and wondering which business schools would best help you achieve that dream? Entrepreneurship is a hot topic and very popular course of study at today’s business schools. As someone who has started more than one successful business, I can attest that I leveraged a lot of my MBA classes and resources into my business ventures.

Let’s take a look at the recent Financial Times ranking of the top 25 business schools for entrepreneurship.  As you can see, seven of the top 10 programs are located in the United States. In fact, US schools accounted for 15 out of the 25 ranked programs.

These programs offer a broad range of courses in entrepreneurship, as well as  significant opportunities for networking with established entrepreneurs, launching start-ups, and developing the skills needed to start successful businesses.

Top Ten MBA Programs for Entrepreneurship
  • Stanford Graduate School of Business
  • Babson College’s Olin Graduate School of Business
  • University of Virginia Darden School of Business
  • Dartmouth’s Tuck School of Business
  • UCLA Anderson School of Management
  • UC Berkeley Haas School of Business
  • University of Pennsylvania Wharton School
  • IE Business School
  • London Business School
  • IESE Business School
According to the Financial Times, the ranking examines the percentage of graduates who started a company and how many of those businesses were still trading at the end of 2015. It also took into consideration how big a role the school and its alumni played in getting the company off the ground. FT also applied a size threshold–requiring responses from at least 15 entrepreneurs at each ranked school.

I think most people would agree that an entrepreneur needs to know the same basic skills as someone running a more established company. After all, every company began as a startup, launched by an entrepreneur.

If anything, you need to know all of the basics as opposed to specializing in one area. My advice to current and prospective MBA students interested in entrepreneurship is to pay close attention in all of your classes—even in the areas you plan to outsource as soon as you have the budget.

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LBS Deadlines for August 2017 Intake [#permalink]
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: LBS Deadlines for August 2017 Intake

The London Business School MBA Class of 2019 application will go live in early August, but until then, candidates can plan ahead with these MBA application deadlines for the 2016-2017 admissions cycle.

Round 1
Application due: September 21, 2016

Decision released: November 23, 2016

Round 2
Application due: January 4, 2017

Decision released: March 22, 2017

Round 3
Application due: February 24, 2017

Decision released: May 10, 2017

Round 4
Application due: April 21, 2017

Decision released: June 21, 2017

All application deadlines are 17:00 UK time. All Admissions Committee decisions are communicated via email and will be sent on the deadline day at approximately 10pm UK time.

For more information, please visit the LBS admissions website.

image credit: Luc Mercelis (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
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Georgetown MBA Program Fall 2017 Essays [#permalink]
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Georgetown MBA Program Fall 2017 Essays

The McDonough School of Business at Georgetown University has updated the MBA essay requirements for the 2016-2017 admissions season and now asks applicants to respond in a video essay in addition to written prompts.

The Georgetown MBA Program says: We want to hear your story. When responding to our required essays, be authentic and take time to reflect on your goals and past experiences. Craft a response that explains how these experiences led you to pursue an MBA.

MBA Essays
  • Essay One: We would like to learn more about you. Please answer the following essay question in 500 words or less: “What matters to you? Please share an experience from your past that illustrates why this matters to you and how it will enable you to contribute during your MBA Program.” (note: this does not necessarily need to be related to your professional goals)
  • Video Essay:  The required video essay is an opportunity for you to bring life to your application. Please introduce yourself to your future Georgetown MBA cohort in a one minute video.
  • Optional Essay One: If you are not currently employed full-time, use this essay to provide information about your current activities. (250 words or fewer)
  • Optional Essay Two: Please provide any information you would like to add to your application that you have not otherwise included. (500 words or fewer)
  • Re-Applicant Essay: Required for re-applicants. How have you strengthened your candidacy since your last application? We are particularly interested in hearing about how you have grown professionally and personally. (500 words or fewer)
For additional information on applying, please visit the Georgetown MBA program admissions website.

Image credit: Georgetown McDonough School of Business
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Georgetown MBA Program Fall 2017 Application Deadlines

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When Applying to B-School, Be Social Media Savvy [#permalink]
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: When Applying to B-School, Be Social Media Savvy
We’re going to tell you something you probably already know: if you’re applying to an MBA program this year, be careful about what you post online. It’s possible that business school adcom members could do a quick search on your name before admitting you to their program, and you don’t want something written in haste to derail your chances of getting in.

But being active on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and other social media platforms isn’t a no-no. In fact, savvy candidates could actually use these venues to boost their credibility and solidify the good impressions made through their application materials.

For example, let’s say that you’re hoping to switch careers after business school, and in one of your essays you share your intention to work for a company that develops clean-energy options in third-world countries. You could tweet links to articles or books you’re reading on the subject, you could post about a local conference you attended, or you could give your take on the most promising advancements in the field.

Or maybe your career to date has led you to become somewhat of an expert on microfinance. Reinforce that reputation through your online presence. Let people know when you were quoted in an article or asked to be on a panel.

Are you a marketing guru? It would be easy to weigh in on—or share—what some of the biggest brands are doing on social media.

The key is to keep things professional and on point. It’s absolutely fine to let your personality shine through, too—just as it should in your essays.

Remember, if you don’t consider social media to be another way to strengthen your candidacy, you may be missing out on a great opportunity that other MBA applicants will most certainly take advantage of.

Think of it this way:



 

 

 

 

 

 

Are you signed up yet? Stacy Blackman Consulting and GMAC® are teaming up on July 28 at 1 p.m. ET to discuss and answer questions about the MBA admissions process. Register here (it’s free!).

***Do you want to stay on top of the application process with timely tips like these? Please subscribe to our weekly newsletter and you’ll receive our expert advice straight in your mailbox before it appears on the blog, plus special offers, promotions, discounts, invitations to events, and more.

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Tuesday Tips: UCLA Anderson Fall 2017 MBA Essay Tips [#permalink]
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Tuesday Tips: UCLA Anderson Fall 2017 MBA Essay Tips


UCLA Anderson School of Management is a small and close-knit school with particular focus on entrepreneurship, entertainment, real estate and other major industries in Southern California. While UCLA has a dominant position in the region it is also a nationally known program that will position you well in whatever career you pursue.

Anderson is highly selective about the composition of each MBA class, therefore your fit with the values and principles of the school is of primary importance. When approaching this set of essays make sure you understand what Anderson will do for you and what you plan to bring to the community.

We have helped countless applicants achieve their UCLA Anderson dreams. Contact us to learn how Stacy Blackman Consulting can help you.

FIRST-TIME APPLICANTS—ONE REQUIRED ESSAY:

We believe that the best results are achieved when you share success, think fearlessly and drive change. With this in mind, what are your goals at UCLA Anderson and in your short-term and long-term career? (750 words maximum)

This question was new last year, and UCLA Anderson Admissions Director Craig Hubbell shared his thoughts about the essay in the admissions blog. Note that he recommends watching this video.

He also elaborates on the three phrases in the video and essay question: “At UCLA Anderson, three principles form our foundation. First, we SHARE SUCCESS within our community, which is to say we collaborate to achieve our goals. While working together, we THINK FEARLESSLY to go past the obvious, to go around the obstacles — with our sights set on making a real impact. And with the opportunity for impact comes our desire to DRIVE CHANGE as a result of all that we do.”

Thorough school research will provide examples you can use to describe why these values and principles drive your goals while attending UCLA Anderson. Your career goals should be examined through the filter of Anderson’s values and how you plan to use those values in your post-Anderson life.

When structuring this essay consider telling one or two pivotal stories to illuminate who you are. UCLA is looking for personal expression in this essay, and to understand how you are different from other applicants. Consider the turning points or moments that triggered reflection for you.

Have you experienced a significant personal setback? What is your family background? Have you lived outside your home country? When did you face a turning point or make a big decision about your career? What were some of your proudest accomplishments? What moments have called upon your need to collaborate, lead or innovate?

For the second part of the essay briefly explain what you plan to do immediately after graduation, and then what you want to accomplish over the long-term with your career. A career path that focuses on demonstrated passions and interests throughout your life is going to be most compelling as you write this essay and each section should bridge seamlessly into the next.

For the part of the essay focusing on UCLA Anderson’s part in your plans, UCLA specifically requests citing specific classes, professors and programs. To express a bit more on the personal side it will be helpful to include the social and extracurricular aspects that attract you to the small and close-knit experience at Anderson. Be specific as you discuss the clubs and conferences that are unique to the UCLA MBA.

OPTIONAL ESSAY:

The following essay is optional. No preference is given in the evaluation process to applicants who submit an optional essay. Please note that we only accept written essays.

Are there any extenuating circumstances in your profile about which the Admissions Committee should be aware? Please use your best judgment. (250 words maximum)

It is important to focus on explanations rather than excuses in this essay. Potential extenuating circumstances may be a very low GPA, academic probation or using a recommender other than your current supervisor.

Clearly explain the situation, and if it is a situation from the past, explain why you have changed. Providing evidence that you will not repeat the actions in question will help to solidify your answer.

RE-APPLICANTS—ONE REQUIRED ESSAY:

Reapplicants who applied for the class entering in 2015 or 2016 are required to complete the following essay:

Please describe your career progress since you last applied and ways in which you have enhanced your candidacy. Include updates on short-term and long-term career goals, as well as your continued interest in UCLA Anderson. (750 words maximum)


If you are a recent re-applicant this essay gives you the opportunity to highlight improvements since your last application. You have room to add other “ways in which you have improved your candidacy” such as an improved GMAT score, academic updates or extracurricular activities. While most MBA programs are focused on quantitative improvements to your profile, keep in mind that here UCLA Anderson is expressly asking for an update on your career.

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Tuesday Tips: Yale School of Management Fall 2017 MBA Essay Tips [#permalink]
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: Tuesday Tips: Yale School of Management Fall 2017 MBA Essay Tips

Yale School of Management continues to have only one required essay as part of the MBA application, yet has streamlined that question this year and left the answer open ended.

Because there is only one essay question to highlight your personal qualities and leadership ability, and no specific career goals essay, make sure your resume and recommendations showcase your key accomplishments.

You may want to highlight specific projects at work that have most excited you and shaped your future goals on your resume and ask your recommenders to comment on those same projects. Strategically designing all of the application components to support your key accomplishments and showcase your best qualities will enhance your candidacy.

Keep in mind the Yale values: “Leaders for business and society think broadly about global trends and challenges, bring a sense of purpose to their work every day, and move forward with analytical rigor.”

Describe the biggest commitment you have ever made. (500 words maximum)

As you approach this essay remember the type of MBA student Yale is most interested in admitting. Ideally you are coming across as an intellectually curious student with a diverse background deeply interested in the integrated curriculum.

Behavioral questions like this one (the tip off is “describe”) seek to understand how you actually operate in various situations. Try to be as specific as possible about how you positively influenced the organization. What did you think or say when you were determining what to do? What did you actually do? How did you feel about the result?

Start by describing each step in detail in terms of what you did, the reaction of others and your own reaction. From there you can cut out anything that is too detailed or too superfluous to the story to maintain the 500 word maximum.

You may decide to focus on a key solo accomplishment at work, and that may be entirely appropriate since most MBA applicants are individual contributors. However, ideally you can demonstrate how you work with others as a leader. Regardless of whether you choose an individual or team accomplishment it should show a significant positive impact on the organization or people within the organization.

Contact us To learn more about designing the best Yale application possible with Stacy Blackman Consulting.

image credit: Yale School of Management
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IESE Fall 2017 MBA Essay Questions [#permalink]
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: IESE Fall 2017 MBA Essay Questions


The Class of 2019 application is now live at IESE Business School, and so we bring you this preview of the essay questions for the 2016-2017 admissions season.

Required Essay
Please answer ONE (and only one) of the following two questions. (400 words)

  • Please describe a time when you had an idea that had a positive impact.
  • How do you develop yourself? What do you see as your development areas now?

Essay Question II (Optional)

I wish that the application had asked me…

This essay can be submitted either written (200 words) or as a video (max 2:00 minutes total in length). We are aware that you are not a media professional.

For more information, please visit the IESE MBA admissions website.

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IESE Fall 2017 MBA Application Deadlines

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London Business School Fall 2017 MBA Essay Questions [#permalink]
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FROM Stacy Blackman Consulting Blog: London Business School Fall 2017 MBA Essay Questions

The application for the Class of 2019 at London Business School will go live in early August, but until then, applicants can start preparing for the required essays of the 2016-2017 admissions season. We were interested to note that last year’s optional essay question is now this cycle’s second required essay prompt.

  • What are your post-MBA goals and how will your prior experience and the London Business School programme contribute towards these? (500 words)
  • Is there any other information you believe the Admissions Committee should know about you and your application to London Business School? (500 words)
For more information, please visit the London Business School MBA admissions website.

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London Business School Deadlines for the August 2017 Intake

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London Business School Fall 2017 MBA Essay Questions [#permalink]
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