The Best MBA Admissions Advice From The Class Of 2019

INTERVIEWS

Margaret (Molly) Rowe, NYU (Stern)

“For the interview, my best advice would be to own your own story and embrace your experience. When I first started applying to business schools, I had this idea of what a traditional business school applicant looked like and worried that because my story and my experiences didn’t fit this mold, I wouldn’t find my place. What I’ve learned is very few have what is considered a “traditional” application, and that the best thing I could do was embrace my life experiences. I also believe that while it’s important listen to everyone’s advice, at the end of the day, it’s your journey and your decision.”

Margaret (Molly) Rowe / NYU Stern

“Don’t be afraid to let your freak flag fly! Highlight true passions and eccentricities instead of trying to fit in the mold. I was skeptical when  mentors urged me to share my quirks, thinking that wasn’t what admissions officers would want to hear. In retrospect, those stories painted the truest picture of myself and made for the most successful applications.”

Leila Kutler / Chicago (Booth)

The STAR method is your friend. It is a helpful framework for structuring your interview responses. First provide an overview of the Situation, then describe the Task at hand, the Action you took, and finally the end Result.”

Chi Achebe / Columbia Business School

Ogbemi Ekwejunor-Etchie, Cornell (Johnson)

“My advice would be to accept the things that make you different. This is much easier to do with positive attributes, but sometimes negative experiences can be the differentiator. What separates applicants are the experiences they have and how they use negative experiences as opportunities to learn and grow. Do you run away from difficult situations or do you embrace them? Being able to show that you are not afraid to take on challenges and succeed or learn something from your failures is critical in telling your story. Make sure to reflect on your stories — do not be afraid to leverage a powerful learning experience even though the outcome may not have led to all-around successes.”

Ogbemi Ekwejunor-Etchie / Cornell (Johnson)

“Make sure you think about both your work-related and non-work related experience when attending the interview. Schools are looking for evidence of being a rounded individual, so don’t just highlight your work-related/academic achievements. If you have climbed Kilimanjaro or raised thousands for charity, mention it! Voluntary work can highlight your best attributes too!”

Tariq Arafa / Warwick Business School

Comments or questions about this article? Email us.