Harvard Sets New MBA Application Deadlines

Harvard Business School graduation for the Class of 2016

Harvard Business School graduation for the Class of 2016

Dee’s Last Harvard Business School Class


Category Class of 2018 Class of 2017 Class of 2016
Applications 9,759 9,686 9,543
Acceptance Rate 11% 11% 12%
Enrolled Students 942 948 940
Yield 90% 90% 90%
Women 43% 41% 41%
International 35% 34% 35%
U.S. Ethnic Minorities 26% 28% 25%
Average Age 27 27 27
Countries Represented 69 64 72
Median GMAT Score 730 730 730
GMAT Range 690-760* 510-790 580-790
STEM Undergrads 38% 36% 39%
Econ/Biz Undergrads 41% 45% 42%
Humanities/Social Science Undergrads 21% 19% 19%
North America 68% 71% 67%
U.S. 65% 66% 65%
Asia 14% 14% 14%
Europe 11% 9% 10%
South & Central America 5% 3% 5%
Africa 1% 1% 3%
Oceana 1% 2% 1%
Venture Capital & Private Equity 15% 17% 17%
Consulting 15% 16% 18%
Financial Services 11% 11% 14%
High Tech/Communications 15% 14% 13%
Government/Education/Non-Profit 8% 9% 8%
Healthcare/Biotech 6% 7% 7%
Consumer Products 7% 6% 5%
Energy/Extractive Minerals 7% 6% 5%
Industrial/Heavy Manufacturing 5% 5% 4%
Military 5% 5% 4%
Other Services 6% 4% 5%

Source: HBS preliminary class profiles Notes: * HBS stopped reporting the full range of GMAT scores and in this latest report only gave the middle 80% range


  • hbsguru

    Well one thing you have to do is really drill down on what is new since you last applied. If nothing is dramatically new you need to explain with some subtlety how you have become more self-aware more confirmed in your goals and just how you are a better applicant.

  • Jess

    any insight that you can share on how to approach the essay if you are a reapplicant (given the same essay question) would be helpful!

  • hbsguru

    thanks for this thorough report, John.
    New Losee or Old Leopold, I dont see HBS going back any time soon to those 5-7 essay applications of recent past with 1. 300 words on most sign. accomplishments, 2.300 words on failures, 3. 300 words undergraduate experience, and 4. a goals+why HBS essay to top it off etc.
    [ahem, altho that drill is probably better for me and my ‘fellow’ consultants].
    The current question recognizes that a good deal of your ‘story’ is clear from application, resume and scores. It puts a small premium on being able to pack in a lot on your resume, esp. some terse but impactful description of accomplishments and a sense of what your company does, what you do etc., esp. if it is not a brand name.
    I’d be happy to opine in interview w. you different ways to write this essay effectively, but in general you need to decide if anything actually needs to be explained, and if not, how to add value to resume, and application short answer boxes.
    For many applicants, esp. cookie cutter types from IB, PE, consulting, etc., the first rule of the essay is DO NO HARM, e.g. do not sound odd, annoying, or unaware–if you are otherwise solid but cookie cutter type, essay is read w. a very sensitive spring in adcom’s brain: is there something here that can eliminate this clown very quickly while still allowing me to have done a thorough job. Try to get past that filter.
    As often noted, on the plus side, essay cannot add inches to your height but it can make you stand up very straight. Sometimes that is the difference,.
    Not clear fr. Losee’s post: will reco form remain the same????
    More later, but if any general questions on this essay, just post.