Ivy League admission officials revealed that the best chance of a candidate to get accepted lies in his application essay. That is why your purpose in writing your MBA essay should be similar to the purpose of a college admission essay. Years back, weren’t you thinking that your goal was to make your dream university think that you’re a worthy student to walk through its halls? The same goes for the MBA application. Double the effort you exerted in writing your college application essay but think along the same lines. Below are reasons why MBA essays are not resumes or a reiteration of your grades and accomplishments.
Limited space is allotted for MBA application essays, so there is simply no space for unnecessary details. Skills and academic excellence are expected and commonplace in the competition. After all, no one in his right mind will aspire for an MBA if his brain dried out in college or in writing his college application essay. Your SAT scores and excellent academic records might have helped to get you in your dream college. Collegiate achievements undoubtedly have had a role to play in getting you a good job. But members of an MBA admission board are not to be steam-rolled by grades and professional history alone. If you’re an overachiever, you are likely just one of the many overachievers trying to get into the same MBA program. You all have good academic records and professional accomplishments but impressive resumes don’t really cut it in for the admissions board. There is no way to get accepted in an MBA program without distinguishing yourself from other applicants except in an MBA essay. So weeding out information like these is not only wise but practical.
Similar to how a college admission essay is evaluated, MBA admission boards evaluate MBA essays for traits and non-academic qualities of the candidates. Obviously, personality is not measured in grades. The members of the board want ambition, honesty, maturity, diplomacy, and other traits in their students. They evaluate inter and intra-personal strengths in their potential students. They want dynamism and enthusiasm — individuals who have interests outside the academe and actually experienced what it’s like to live (if you want to be poetic about it). If you recall, your high school adviser gave you the same advice regarding your jargon habit and verbose essay. Do not repeat the same mistakes in your MBA essay. Flamboyant words take up too much space and a highly-technical language hides your personality which defeats the purpose of your MBA essay.
You might be surprised but Ivy League admission officials actually claim that the best essays they’ve read (read: those they accepted) often talks about a key memory, an important experience, a hobby – things the authors felt passionate about. The topics seem like the kinds people use in writing a college admission essay but they are highly effective for MBA application essays. The two are similar to each other although at varying levels. A college admission essay shows universities what a student wants to achieve and how they are influenced by the people around them. The same goes for the MBA; the board wants to see how you’ve matured because of your experiences. They are not interested in your high marks but how you achieved them. Or more likely, how you managed to have a life while performing excellently in academics. So take a deep breath and erase all resume info in your MBA essay. After all, the resume is already part of your application.