By Chicago Booth September 28, 2012 Leave a Comment

As you put the finishing touches on your application in preparation for the Round One deadline on Tuesday, October 2, I’d l like to offer some points to consider for putting forth your strongest application.

Spend some time on your application strategy. How have you leveraged every part of the application to effectively communicate your messages to the Admissions Committee? Have you fully developed your personal story in a succinct yet compelling way? It’s important to be able to clearly “tell your story” within the confines of the real estate offered to you in the application and essays. Be sure to articulate your fit. What value you will gain from the Chicago Booth MBA experience, and what value you can add to this powerful and dynamic community? Ultimately, we should be able to see in your application why an MBA makes sense for you at this time in your life and career, and why Booth is the best place to pursue that journey.

Apply when your application is strongest. The most common question to the Admissions Committee is “When is the best time to apply?” The answers to this question is quite simple: consider whether or not you’ve leveraged each and every part of the application to support your fit with Booth. When you feel confident about your application, you are ready to apply.

Rounds One and Two are competitive, but statistically your chances for admission are almost equal in either. Round Three is more competitive simply because there are fewer spots left in the class. Regardless of the round, the Admissions Committee will always seek the candidates of best fit.

Be open-minded about essay question three. Many of you may be weighing the presentation versus the essay option. This year, we have simply added yet another element of choice meant to give you the freedom to choose your preferred medium to communicate with the committee. This is quite plainly an exercise in how you think. If you have developed a framework of how you will reveal your story through your application, it should become clear which approach will be a better choice for you.

Make sure your GMAT or GRE scores have been sent to Booth.
You can do this via www.mba.com if you haven’t already. We accept and value the GMAT and GRE score equally  A minimum score is not required for consideration as the standardized test is just one of the areas that we evaluate.

Look for input from those you trust. You can consider asking a colleague, mentor or friend to read your application. The hope is that they will confirm that your essays address the questions you were asked and that they are a fair representation of you. If not, you can use their feedback to  better convey your story.

Last but not least, do not wait until the last minute to submit your application. Applications should be submitted by 5:00 P.M. Central Time on October 2, 2012, but we encourage you to submit your application in advance. Should you experience any issues or have questions, just contact us for help.

My team and I look forward to reviewing your applications and getting to know you.

Best of luck,
Kurt Ahlm

About Chicago Booth

The University of Chicago Booth School of Business. Since 1898, Booth has produced ideas and leaders that shape the world of business. Our rigorous, discipline-based approach to business education transforms our students into confident, effective, respected business leaders prepared to face the toughest challenges.

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