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3 Reasons That Extracurricular Activities Are Essential For Your Business School Applications

3 Reasons That Extracurricular Activities Are Essential For Your Business School Applications

Do I need to re-take my GMAT? Is my GPA high enough? Do I have enough years of work experience? These are just a slew of the questions we receive from MBA applicants every year.

One question that is rarely asked and often overlooked is “Have I done enough outside of the office and classroom?” Business schools are looking in-depth at all aspects of the application process from the essays to the GMAT score to the resume. One area that candidates either forget or neglect to highlight in their application or cultivate throughout their academic and professional careers is extra-curricular activities. Admissions officers at MBA programs around the world take this aspect very seriously, and here are three reasons why you should do the same.

4 Ways to Make the Most of Your Business School Experience

4 Ways to Make the Most of Your Business School Experience

Over the summer, one of my Veritas Prep clients from last year asked me if I had any advice for him before school started. Offering advice is what I do for a living, so it’s a safe bet that I did, but he probably knew that before he asked. This 3-part blog series grew out of that initial off-the-cuff email response and is designed for anyone in any stage of business school, whether you’re still researching schools, walking onto campus for the first time, or have graduation in the near future. Your two years will fly by, and you want to make sure you graduate without saying “If only I had ….”

Veritas Prep Consultant Spotlight: Get to know Kenyata, Chicago Booth MBA

Veritas Prep Consultant Spotlight: Get to know Kenyata, Chicago Booth MBA

Applying to the world’s most elite business schools requires much more than a high GMAT score and strong resume.  Self refection, creating your personal brand, understanding school fit, addressing profile weaknesses and capitalizing on your unique strengths are essential in crafting a successful application.  Don’t go at this alone – we can help!  Veritas Prep has the most stellar MBA admissions consulting team in the industry and we can help you achieve your MBA goals!

UCLA Anderson Application Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

UCLA Anderson Application Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

Today we take a look at UCLA Anderson’s admissions essays and deadlines for the Class of 2017. Last year Anderson was on the vanguard of the effort across MBA programs to reduce essay count, dropping down to just one required essay, and for the 2014-2015 admissions season the school’s application returns with just one required essay once again. However, that one essay is all-new this year.

How Many Times Should I Take the GMAT?

How Many Times Should I Take the GMAT?

The GMAT is of course one of the most important components of the application process, so there is little else more devastating than not doing well on it.  Often, applicants find their actual performance is below their practice exams, leaving them not only bewildered and shocked, but also desperate with anxiety.  Schools know how tough the test is, and expect to see applicants who have taken it more than once, but a common question always seems to be:  how many times is too many?  It might help to first discuss how schools look at the test overall.

Yale SOM Application Essay and Deadlines for 2014-2015

Yale SOM Application Essay and Deadlines for 2014-2015

Today we dig into the Yale School of Management’s admissions essays and application deadlines for the Class of 2017. Last year, Yale was one of the most aggressive movers in reducing its essay count, dropping from four required essays down to two. This year, the Yale admissions team has gone even further, announcing just one required essay for the 2014-2015 admissions season. Note that Yale has kept its video questions, which the school added last year.

UC Berkeley (Haas) Application Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

UC Berkeley (Haas) Application Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

Earlier this summer UC Berkeley’s Haas School of business released its MBA admissions essays and deadlines for the Class of 2017. Like other business schools, Haas has chopped an essay yet again, dropping down to three required essays (although we should note that the school’s word limit for each essay actually increased). The Haas MBA admissions team has also made significant changes to the questions that it asks in its essay prompts, so we have plenty of new advice for applicants this year.

This Kind of Leadership Will Get You into Business School

This Kind of Leadership Will Get You into Business School

One of the most stressful moments in an applicant’s trek through the business school due diligence process is when they realize they have done very little engaging with anyone or anything outside of work.  Let’s face it—life gets busy, and while you may have been in every club and organization you could get your hands on in college, once out in the real world, you may have found it very easy to simply go to work and come home at night without doing much else.

You Should Apply for Early Action to Business School If...

You Should Apply for Early Action to Business School If...

Here’s a good, basic rule of thumb for when during the application season you should apply to b-school:  go for round one if you can, but only if your application is at its best.  This rule will serve you well, particularly if you fall into either one of two categories:  you have several different schools you would be thrilled to get into, and you consider yourself to be a fairly competitive candidate.

Top MBA Programs with Application Deadlines and Essays for the 2014-2015 Application Season

Top MBA Programs with Application Deadlines and Essays for the 2014-2015 Application Season

Business school application season is among us. You are working hard to find the right references for letters of recommendation, get GMAT scores up, and finalize your essays.

Determine Which Business School Has the Right Culture for You

Determine Which Business School Has the Right Culture for You

When applying to business school, one of the most reliable questions you will get from just about any institution deals with how you feel you will fit within that school’s culture.  While it’s fairly easy to see if you have an academic fit or a professional fit at a school (by researching their curriculum and statistics for admitted students), it’s far more difficult sometimes to ascertain the “culture” of a school.

3 Benefits of Applying in Round 2 for your MBA

3 Benefits of Applying in Round 2 for your MBA

In my last post, I wrote about the virtues of applying in round one, but there are a few reasons why you might want to consider applying in round two instead.

NYU Stern Admissions Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

NYU Stern Admissions Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

NYU Stern has released its MBA application deadlines and essays for the 2014-2015 admissions season. Among top MBA programs, Stern has perhaps made the fewest changes of any school. But, Stern’s famous “Personal Expression” prompt — for which you can submit almost anything at all — remains, which we like. Overall, our advice has changed very little since last year. Read on….

Round 1 vs. Round 2: When Is It Best for You to Apply to Business School?

Round 1 vs. Round 2: When Is It Best for You to Apply to Business School?

There is little more debated in the b-school application world than whether it’s better to apply in round one or round two.  Most can agree that the third round is the most challenging, but late night discussions have endured and fights started over the topic of whether to submit for the first or second deadline.  For those of you with a short attention span, I will go ahead and cut to the chase by quoting Bruce DelMonico, assistant dean and director of admissions at Yale SOM, who says: We definitely advise people to avoid the third round if possible, because space can become an issue by the time the third round rolls around. But we do view the first two rounds as roughly equivalent.”

Chicago Booth Application Essay and Deadlines for 2014-2015

Chicago Booth Application Essay and Deadlines for 2014-2015

The University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business recently released its admissions essays and deadlines for the Class of 2017. Once again we see a top-ranked MBA program cut back on its number of required essays this year; now Booth only has one essay, and it’s not a traditional essay at all. Booth has decided to keep its famous “PowerPoint” question and drop everything else! Of course, this puts even more importance than ever on how well you answer this prompt.

Veritas Prep Consultant Spotlight: Get to Know Heidy, Stanford MBA

Veritas Prep Consultant Spotlight: Get to Know Heidy, Stanford MBA

Applying to the world’s most elite business schools requires much more than a high GMAT score and strong resume.  Self reflection, creating your personal brand, understanding school fit, addressing profile weaknesses and capitalizing on your unique strengths are all essential in crafting a successful application.  Don’t go at this alone – we can help!  Veritas Prep has the most stellar MBA admissions consulting team in the industry and we can help you achieve your MBA goals!

Become a Leader in Your Community and Strengthen Your MBA Applications

Become a Leader in Your Community and Strengthen Your MBA Applications

One of the most stressful moments in an applicant’s trek through the business school due diligence process is when they realize they have done very little engaging with anyone or anything outside of work.  Let’s face it—life gets busy, and while you may have been in every club and organization you could get your hands on in college, once out in the real world, you may have found it very easy to simply go to work and come home at night without doing much else.

Kellogg Application Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

Kellogg Application Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management has released its MBA admissions essays and deadlines for the Class of 2017. While most top MBA programs have mostly been making nips and tucks to their admissions essays this year, Kellogg has made a lot of changes. And, like other business schools, Kellogg has dropped a required essay, going from three to two required essays for applicants to its traditional MBA program. The video response, which Kellogg introduced last year, remains.

Balance Your MBA Applications by Conveying Qualitative and Quantitative Impact

Balance Your MBA Applications by Conveying Qualitative and Quantitative Impact

When it comes to conveying your marketing message to the admissions committees at top business schools, it is important to relate your various profile characteristics in a meaningful way.  Often, applicants are naturally very good at doing this in either a quantitative or qualitative way, but it’s actually important to do both.

Veritas Prep Consultant Spotlight: Get to Know Marcus, Wharton MBA

Veritas Prep Consultant Spotlight: Get to Know Marcus, Wharton MBA

Are you applying to the world’s top business schools?  Do you need help crafting the best application possible and standing out to admissions committees?  Veritas Prep has the most stellar MBA admissions consulting team in the industry – we’re talking the Jedi Knights of admissions consulting – and we can help you achieve your MBA goals!

Duke (Fuqua) Application Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

Duke (Fuqua) Application Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

The Fuqua School of Business at Duke University has released is MBA admissions deadlines and essays for the Class of 2017. Duke hasn’t added or cut the number of required essays this year, although it did add a new option for the second required essay. The “25 Random Things” prompt remains, which makes us happy!

Dartmouth (Tuck) Application Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

Dartmouth (Tuck) Application Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

Dartmouth’s Tuck School of Business recently released its application essays and deadlines for the 2014-2015 admissions season. Like so many other top MBA programs these days, Tuck has eliminated an essay, going down to just two required essay prompts this year. The two essays that remain are taken directly from last year’s application (with just one subtle tweak to the second essay prompt).

The Importance of Innovation in Your MBA Applications

The Importance of Innovation in Your MBA Applications

In addition to being a strong leader, a team player and an all-around impressive contributor to the workplace, business schools are looking for innovative thinkers.  When you hear the word innovation, many think of filing patents or launching products, both of which would certainly go a long way towards demonstrating innovative thinking to be sure, but innovation can be so much more.

Michigan (Ross) Application Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

Michigan (Ross) Application Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

The University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business recently announced its application essays and deadlines for the 2014-2015 admissions season. After dropping from four required essays to three last year, the Ross MBA admissions team decided to shed another one, going down to just two required essays this year. And, the two required essays that remain are entirely new this year. The changes just keep coming!

Craft a Compelling Work History for Your MBA Applications

Craft a Compelling Work History for Your MBA Applications

One of the most important profile characteristics for any b-school applicant is their work history.  Unlike Law School, Medical School and just about every other terminal degree or master’s level program, business school requires students to come with some kind of work experience under their belts in order to “qualify.”   In addition to being unique, therefore it’s also very important to have this credential, since much of what you learn in business school ends up coming from your classmates, and in turn, they learn from your perspective and experience.

GMAT Scores vs. Average Starting MBA Salaries

GMAT Scores vs. Average Starting MBA Salaries

It’s not a stretch to say that the more prestigious the business school you attend, the higher your starting post-graduation salary will tend to be. The more prestigious your MBA program is, the more options you will tend to have in the job hunt, and the higher potential employers will be willing to go to hire you. The more options you have and the more marketable you are, the more you’re probably going to make when you come right out of business school.

Filed in: Business School, GMAT
MIT Sloan Admissions Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

MIT Sloan Admissions Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

The MIT Sloan School of Management has released its admissions essays and deadlines for the 2014-2015 application season. Sloan has actually bucked the trend we’ve seen lately; the school still has two admissions essays, and actually increased the maximum allowed word count for its second essay (which is new this year)! The new question that Sloan added is a good one, but it will present you with some unique challenges, which we discuss more below.

Build a Stronger Application for Business School

Build a Stronger Application for Business School

It’s not uncommon for students to have an academic transgression in their undergraduate experience.  Perhaps you failed your introductory computer programming course as I did, or just never got your mind around all those esoteric English courses or math courses.  Even if you graduated with a decent GPA, unless you had a perfect record, you likely have something you can point to in college that you wish you could do over.  While you can’t go back and literally do it over again, you do have the opportunity now to build what some refer to as an “alternative transcript,” which can help mitigate the poor performance of the past and reassure the admissions committee you now have what it takes to succeed in a rigorous curriculum.

Columbia Business School Application Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

Columbia Business School Application Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

Columbia Business School has released its application deadlines and essays for the 2014-2015 admissions season. Like other business schools, Columbia has done some more trimming to its essays, which we discuss in more detail below.

What Do Top MBA Programs Like Harvard, Wharton, and Booth Look for in Your Application?

What Do Top MBA Programs Like Harvard, Wharton, and Booth Look for in Your Application?

When deciding to go back to business school, the first thing applicants often do is make a self-assessment of their core qualifications.  While things like work experience and career goals can be very subjective, there are two key numbers which like it or not, tend to size up candidates fairly easily, at least from a cursory overview.  It’s no big secret that these metrics are the GMAT score and the grade point average.

The Key to Crafting Your MBA Application

The Key to Crafting Your MBA Application

Business schools receive applications from a wide variety of people from very diverse backgrounds.  Because there are no strict requirements about what you have done (only that you have indeed done something), business schools entertain hopeful applications from just about every career field imaginable.  Still, most applicants to business school come from what’s considered “traditional” industries and functions.  In fact, from the chart below compiled at the Veritas Prep home office, you will see something you may not have noticed on your own.  The overwhelming majority of the accepted applicants to top business schools in recent years (70%) have come from just four professional fields:  Consulting, Finance, Sales/Marketing, and Management.

Wharton Application Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

Wharton Application Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania recently released its MBA admissions deadlines and essays for the 2014-2015 application season. The trend that picked up speed last year has continued: After dropping its number of required essays from three to two last year, Wharton has announced that this year’s application contains only one required essay. We keep asking, “How much lower can they go?” but admissions officers keep finding a way to shed essays and put more emphasis on other parts of the application.

Where Do You Fit into the MBA Admissions Process?

Where Do You Fit into the MBA Admissions Process?

There are traditionally two types of business school students, which I grant you, fall into very broad, generalized buckets: Poets & Quants.  It’s likely if you have begun digging into b-school research already that you have come across these categories and have therefore considered where you might be located.  It’s often fairly obvious who fits in where, and certainly there are exceptions for folks who truly straddle both categories, but by and large, you will identify with either one or the other, and knowing where you come from can often help you in the application process.  It can possibly also help you in other ways as well, such as when you are working on team projects in school, or afterwards, when the time comes to choose your post MBA job opportunity.

AIGAC Applicant Survey Shows that Applicants Are Positive Overall on Video Responses

AIGAC Applicant Survey Shows that Applicants Are Positive Overall on Video Responses

Last week, at its 7th annual global conference, the Association of International Graduate Admissions Consultants (AIGAC) revealed the results of the 2014 edition of its MBA applicant survey. Since 2009, AIGAC’s MBA Applicant Survey has gathered and summarized the perspective of MBA applicants on the admissions process, helping member admissions consultants and business schools gain insights into applicant perceptions of each stage of the admissions process, from tools they first use to research programs and the reasons that they select programs to career and salary expectations. Many consultants and admissions officers consider it an extremely reliable read on the pulse of the graduate business education space.

Filed in: Business School
How to Make the Switch from Engineering to Business School

How to Make the Switch from Engineering to Business School

Having graduated from a top engineering school, I know the vernacular is different in the tech world.  Often, engineers wake up one day after graduation and several years on the job realizing they have been speaking this tech language exclusively and now that they have the inkling to go back to business school, they fear failure in the admissions process for lack of “socialization” with the real world such as their fellow applicants from other industries may have.

How to Get a Hiring Advantage after Business School

How to Get a Hiring Advantage after Business School

Recently, a client and I were discussing their approach to the Harvard Business School application process.  This client was very excited about HBS and like many other applicants, saw himself as the perfect fit for Harvard for a variety of very good reasons.

As we began diving into his backstory and working together to organize an approach, it also came out that this person wanted to work for one of the top five investment banks after business school.  It seems part of his logic in applying to Harvard and assessing his fit for their program was that it would “look good” to these top investment banks who must of course think highly of HBS and enjoy hiring their freshly minted MBAs.

Stanford GSB Application Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

Stanford GSB Application Essays and Deadlines for 2014-2015

Stanford GSB has released its MBA admissions essays and deadlines for the Class of 2017. Last year Stanford resisted the urge to cut an essay (while many other top MBA programs did reduce their number of required essays), but this year is another story: Stanford now only requires two essays, including its famous “What matters most to you, and why?” question. Plus, the Stanford GSB admissions team made a curious change to what we thought was one of last year’s most interesting application essays.

First Mover Advantage: Start Your MBA Applications Early & Improve Your Chances of Admission into Top Business Schools

First Mover Advantage: Start Your MBA Applications Early & Improve Your Chances of Admission into Top Business Schools

At Veritas Prep headquarters, spring is definitely one of our favorite times of the year!  Not just because of the warmer weather, but also because our admissions consulting clients are letting us know what top-tier MBA programs they’re hearing from and sharing their success stories with us.

Harvard Business School Admissions Essays & Deadlines for 2014-2015

Harvard Business School Admissions Essays & Deadlines for 2014-2015

And just like that, the new MBA admissions season is starting to happen. Harvard Business School has announced its application essay prompt and Round 1 deadline for 2014-2015. Last year we made much of the Great Essay Slimdown, in which many business schools cut their number of required essays or reduced word counts. Harvard went down to just one essay last year (and made it optional!) meaning that there wasn’t much more slimming down the school could do, short of eliminating the essay altogether.

International Business Experience Could Make All the Difference in Your MBA Applications

International Business Experience Could Make All the Difference in Your MBA Applications

There’s no arguing that the world is getting smaller.  Technology has finally connected just about any remote part of the globe which until just a few years ago, still operated in many cases as if in the dark ages.  Even in the remotest villages of Africa, we now find cell phones and smart phones.  Where we once had to fly to client locations to meet “face to face,” we can now meet remotely via telepresence, which has become as easy as finding a mobile connection.