If you have decided to re-apply to a school where you were rejected, one of the most valuable things you can seek is feedback on why you didn’t make the cut last time. Some schools will actually provide this information if you ask for it, so don’t be shy about reaching back to them.
If you are applying to a school in the top 10, you may not be able to get specifics from the admissions teams on why you didn’t get in due simply to the number of applications they receive, but you can still seek this information from outside sources by confiding in a colleague or contact who has their MBA or perhaps some insight into the process.
At the very least, you should sit down with your application and try as objectively as possible to see where you may have come up short. If you have trouble finding such shortcomings, it may simply be the case that there were too many applicants similar to you in the pool last year, and the resulting mathematical odds did not go your way.
Assessing your weaknesses is critical to a reapplication, since you may find favor with the same admissions committee that rejected you in the past if you can somehow inoculate the concern. Of course there are the obvious weaknesses such as a sub-par GMAT score or low GPA, or perhaps you went to a low-ranked state college (nothing you can do about that now of course except to maybe take a course or two at a better school). The tricky part comes in the more subtle components of the application. Perhaps your career vision was not clearly connected to what you did in your past, or maybe you failed to convey a passionate, compelling case for why you need the MBA. Often, it comes down to a failure of message.
It could be that the overall picture you painted was not articulated in a way that captured the attention of the committee. How was your fit with your target programs? Was there something in your application that communicated a poor match with their culture or curriculum? These are the questions that can truly drive you crazy, since it’s largely guesswork, but they are vital to consider.
Once you have some clear thoughts on why you didn’t get in, you can then formulate a fresh approach to your current application. Don’t forget that of primary concern to the admissions committees will be what you have accomplished since the last application that now makes you a better candidate. If you can clearly articulate such achievements, you will give the admissions committees a compelling reason to let you in this year.
If you have MBA admissions questions, call us at 1-800-925-7737 and speak with an MBA admissions expert today. Click here to take our Free MBA Admissions Profile Evaluation! As always, be sure to find us on Facebook and Google+, and follow us on Twitter!
Scott Bryant has over 25 years of professional post undergraduate experience in the entertainment industry as well as on Wall Street with Goldman Sachs. He served on the admissions committee at the Fuqua School of Business where he received his MBA and now works part time in retirement for a top tier business school. He has been consulting with Veritas Prep clients for the past six admissions seasons.