Tips from an Expert: MBA Admissions

August 12, 2021

John Byrne of Poets & Quants recently interviewed Julia Brady of Fortuna Admissions about the state of MBA admissions. While the interview focuses on Chicago Booth and Northwestern’s Kellogg, Julia provides some great tips for students applying to any business school.

Here are the top three takeaways.

Know what admissions is looking for

When choosing a program, it will be helpful to research the school and find out what attributes they value. Authenticity as a candidate is key – don’t try to be someone you’re not. MBA schools are interested in diversity of candidates, so having a different path than others won’t necessarily be a negative.

Some business schools will want you to unpack your intellectual interests, your background, and your professional goals when thinking about what you will bring to the program and how that is going to impact the student experience for others.

Other schools are going to look for students who have already put themselves out there and have been able to take a tough stance or do something unique that has had an impact on their school or the world around them.

Share what makes you unique

To show the admissions committee that you will be a successful student, fast forward to what that student experience is going to be like. What experiences have you had that will bring different perspectives and skills into the classroom? Be able to articulate the value you will bring.

Think about what will help you stand out and go that extra mile in ways that you’ll really add to the culture and community.

Final words of advice

Really dig deep and present your authentic self. Think about what makes you special, what drives you, what has allowed you to accomplish things so far, and what you envision for your future impact - not just at this school, but in society or globally. Discerning admissions officers will see that and appreciate it. Taking the time to reflect and, if needed, have thought partners help you, is incredibly valuable.

Watch the full interview here.