So you’ve narrowed down your choice of MBA programs, and you are ready to begin the actual application process. Your MBA application requirements range from your resume to test scores, but one of the most influential components on the admissions decision is the application essay.
Often called a personal statement or statement of purpose, the admission essay provides a great opportunity for you to share who you are, your goals, your personality, and your interests—both professional and personal—with the admissions committee.
FIU’s Professional MBA recruitment team has provided a short, but critical list of ideas to keep in mind when composing your MBA application essay:
1. Let the admissions committee become acquainted with you through your essay.
You shouldn’t reword your resume into an essay. We know about your educational and professional endeavors from reading your resume, and now we want to know about you as a person. Do not be afraid to share a relevant story about yourself: learning the importance of teamwork through an interesting situation, a mentor helping you fine-tune your career goals – tell us about these experiences.
Of course, you can build on things that are raised in other parts of the application—just make sure it’s additive.
2. Do not overlook simple mistakes.
Misspelled words, incomplete sentences, and poor grammar will cast a negative light on any essay, no matter how brilliant the content is. Have friends and family read through the essays – the more eyes to review your writing, the better. Even use a free online grammar and spell-check tool.
3. Don’t copy and paste your essay from other applications.
This is the downfall of a number of students each year who apply to multiple schools and don’t bother to tailor their essays to each school.
Do not submit an application essay to school No. 1 stating how much you admire school No. 2. It happens much more often than you think.
4. After writing your essays, go back and reread the question.
It is very easy to be led astray on a tangent, especially when you are writing about yourself. Did you actually answer all the questions in each essay? Are there things that are unnecessary and can be removed?
Telling your Story
The admissions essay is one of the few opportunities on your application where you showcase yourself and how you will be an asset to the program. Remember, there is no secret formula. Be authentic and make your case.