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MBA Application

MBA Re-application is a painful process. The wounds are not fully healed, and you are back at evaluating profile weakness, re-taking the GMAT, and talking to new recommenders. Although the number of re-applicants accepted to top MBA programs varies, and most schools have not revealed the numbers, close to 10% of all applications are from re-applicants. The volume is so consistent that some schools have begun offering the option to apply as a fresh applicant.

Here are 10 winning strategies for MBA Re-application

1) Class Size

The first metric that should interest the re-applicant is the class size. With Harvard explicitly mentioning that "Of the 900+ students in the Class of 2017, 94 of us were reapplicants.", the class size makes the whole difference. For smaller class size, the percentage of re-applicants decreases as applicants tend to apply where the odds are better. Re-applicants, taking advantage of this trend, should target smaller but reputed MBA programs

Cities define the experience of an MBA class. Columbia, NYU Stern and Cornell, all hosted in New York, want to hear how you would take advantage of the location. Even London Business School fearing the repercussion of Brexit have focused internally on London. HEC Paris taunts the vicinity to the world’s fashion capital as a defining characteristic. The only school that avoids mentioning the host city as a plague are economies that are not doing particularly well but have excellent Business Schools (IESE and IE in Spain).

Understanding the positioning strategies of Business Schools would help you position your essays accordingly. Seek help here with our Essay Review Service.

Blindly reusing the brilliant turn of phrases for all top MBA programs or about New York’s brilliance for Stern’s goals and Columbia’s NYU essay rarely works although anecdotally the testimonial from those who successfully implemented such strategy are shared the most in social media and forums.


Most applicants don’t have continuous involvement with one non-profit. When they learn that the spike in activity, 1 year before admissions would be judged as manipulation by the US schools, the geographic spread of their target schools widens. European schools don't have such heavy emphasis on volunteering and extra-curricular. However, if you were among those who had decent involvement (3-4 months each) in a non-profit while managing an impressive career progression, positioning the extra-curricular experience is necessary for a Winning MBA Application.

Here are 5 ways to position your volunteering/extra-curricular experience

1) Choice of Organization

Although schools don't openly share this uncomfortable trend, applicants from Fortune 100 companies have a clear advantage over applicants building their multi-functional skills in a start-up or performing above their peers in a 200 to 500 ranked Fortune company. When you have 3-4 years of experience in one organization, the sub-conscious question that admission team would have is - can the applicant excel in a highly...
Categories : MBA Application

When clients share their post-MBA goals, I first evaluate their resume, volunteering experience, motivation, and career progression. The combination of the evaluation factors almost always determines the feasibility of the goal.

The follow-up questions are primarily skewed towards understanding six factors:

1) Motivation for Post-MBA Goals

An MBA should not be the first attempt at upgrading your skills or experiencing cross-cultural learning opportunities. Most successful applicants demonstrate the initiative to gain additional experience by taking on projects that require them to come out of their comfort zone. Marketers and Finance professionals learning a new technology to complement their core skills is a typical but effective example. Technologists and consultants taking certification in Finance or Marketing courses to develop an in-depth understanding of Businesses and using the newly acquired knowledge in designing systems, software or campaigns are some of the other examples we...

Now that you have a summary of the curriculum let us go back to the tips on answering the goals and how ISB PGP would help you achieve them.

ISB PGP Essay Tip#1: Critically look at your career (choices you have made)

Honesty is rarely seen in MBA Application. So it came as a surprise when one of our clients choose to describe the trend India was bucking in placing the vast majority of teenagers into Engineering and Medicine. Instead of passing the blame onto parents, society or peers, he owned up to the mistake and shared how as a young kid, he didn’t know where his talent lied. This is true for the vast majority of applicants.

Only 20-25% of top applicants are actively involved in extra-curricular at school – an essential part of skill discovery and finding where one’s true talent.

ISB PGP Essay Tip#2: Influences behind the...

In this example, the applicant shares how his passion for math sparked an interest in Finance and a career with Goldman Sachs. Although aware of the career path – short-term and long-term with the current role, the applicant cites a transformation that is happening in the industry as a major motivator to upgrade his skills.

By comparing the revolutionizing force of the internet in the mid-90s with the trifecta of AI, Blockchain, and automated processes, the applicant is making an argument of taking a break from the career and upgrading his skills on an emergency basis. The applicant then commends NYU Stern’s thought leadership in customizing the curriculum to incorporate FinTech as one of the 25 specializations.

In the concluding paragraphs, the applicant shares how emerging economies have yet to find a free-flow of deals despite innovation in fund-raising platforms. With the experiential learning modules, the applicant plans to develop hands-on experience necessary to understand the financial, cultural and governance issues in these economies. Through the skill enhancement, FinTech specialization and experiential learning, the...

In this MIT Sloan Sample Cover Letter, we consider the profile of an applicant who has 3+ years’ of experience in a management consulting company. Working with clients in the Healthcare industry has exposed the applicant of the inefficiencies in data management and the impact it has on patient care.

Profile Example #2: Consulting to Healthcare Entrepreneurship (with MIT Sloan MBA)

Most hospitals and insurance companies have data in independent Silos with the inability to communicate with each other. On an unrelated exploration of pre-existing conditions and its impact on the effectiveness of drugs, he realizes that although there exists study, evaluating the results of the treatment in the real world is non-existent as patients rarely visit Doctors once their condition improves. Since data of their health record is private, the follow-up communication is not welcome in most cases. To make matters worse, the recent data breaches of leading insurance companies and hospital networks have discouraged App development around private data.

There has never been a better time to bring patient data to a secure blockchain.

Although we have a checklist for Cover Letter...

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