Talk about the early bird. HEC Paris already has set its MBA application deadlines for the school’s September 2019 intake. But the biggest surprise is how early candidates can apply to gain a seat in the class.
HEC’s first deadline is June 1, slightly more than three months earlier than the round one deadline at Harvard Business School on Sept. 5. And for applicants who meet that early deadline, the school is promising an admissions decision in little more than a month on July 6.
All told, the school has a half dozen rounds this year in six consecutive months. The round two deadline kicks in on July 1, with a decision due 26 days later on July 27. Each of the next four rounds ends on the 15th of every month from August to November. In effect, it’s a rolling admissions process in which every applicant knows if he or she has been admitted five weeks after the application deadline. That takes the pain out of the wait.
HEC Pariss 2018-2019 MBA Application Deadlines For Sept. 2019 Intake
|HEC Paris Rounds||Application Deadline||Interviews||Decisions|
|Round One||June 1, 2018||NA||July 6, 2018|
|Round Two||July 1, 2018||NA||July 27, 2018|
|Round Three||Aug. 15, 2018||NA||Sept. 1, 2018|
|Round Four||Sept. 15, 2018||NA||Oct. 19, 2018|
|Round Five||Oct. 15, 2018||NA||Nov. 16, 2018|
|Round Six||Nov. 15, 2018||NA||Dec. 14, 2018|
At HEC Paris, the admissons process is unusual in a couple of ways. Candidates are encouraged to complete a short form with a CV for a “preliminary evaluation” in which applicants get personalized feedback from the school’s marketing and recruitment manager. Once you complete a formal application, the Admissions Board then meets for a pre-selection jury which will review your profile in detail before deciding whether to extend an invitation for two admission interviews by alumni.
Both interviews have equal weight in the decision-making process, and consist of a 10-minute oral presentation on a topic of the candidate’s choice, followed by an in-depth discussion about your application. The interviews will be conducted in English. Interviews usually take place in the two weeks leading up to the final admissions jury.
Once the interviews have been carried out, the school’s admissions jury will then meet to discuss and decide on your application. The jury is unlike any traditional admissions committee because it is attended by representatives of the French Ministry of Education, HEC Paris alumni and the MBA faculty, as well as the Dean of the HEC Paris MBA.
This meeting has three possible outcomes: A clear admit, a ding, or placement on the school’s waitlist. Candidates are informed of the jury’s decision within hours. The admissions jury meets 12 times a year to make its decisions.
FOR LAST YEAR’S SEPTEMBER INTAKE, HEC PARIS RECEIVED 1,397 APPLICATIONS FOR 137 CLASSROOM SEATS
For HEC Paris’ September intake last year, the school received 1,397 applications for 137 classroom seats. The school admitted 232 candidates, for an acceptance rate of 22%. Traditionally, the school’s acceptance rate hovers near a highly selective 15%-17% when you add in both the September and January intakes. Last year’s fall class boasted a 688 average GMAT, equivalent to past classes, ranging from a low of 600 to a high of 770.
One number that stands out, however, is 93%: the percentage of incoming students who hail from outside France. This gives the program a distinctly international flavor. Here, students must learn to work in 4-5 member teams with people who possess very different backgrounds from themselves – perfect preparation for international careers for a majority of graduates who’ll be working in locations far removed from their cultural norms.
ADVICE FROM RECENT GRADUATES & STUDENTS:
“Put yourself at stake! Most of the value added of an MBA comes from your classmates and the way you decide to interact with them. It is essential that you are open to exchange, seek advice, but also criticism, from the people around you, and that you use it constructively to grow through the program and become a stronger person.” — Barbara Calvi, Class of 2018 MBA graduate from HEC Paris
“Demonstrate consistency. If you are studying for the GMAT, consistent daily practice for 2-3 months will get you a good score. If you are writing up your application, showing consistent superior performance across both your professional career and extra-curricular activities will be viewed positively. Finally, if you are going through the interview phase, remaining true to yourself and your application will definitely earn you a spot at HEC Paris. As a further tip, if you have already earned your place in HEC Paris and hope to stay or would consider staying in France after the MBA, I would definitely recommend that you start learning French as soon as possible.” — Priya-Darshinee Ramkissoon, Class of 2018 MBA graduate from HEC Paris now working at Amazon
“Take time to focus on your application. Writing my application was easily the most difficult part of my b-school application process. Your application, including your essays, is the message you send to the admissions committee on why they should admit you. Your GMAT score, CV, and references are all factors into the admission decision, but those inputs are fairly straightforward. Your application tells the b-schools why you are specifically a good fit for their program and there’s no cookie cutter template to follow when writing your essays. I re-wrote essays five times on average and got multiple friends to help proofread to ensure that I was sending the right message across. Remember to review the entire application thoroughly before planning your submission dates and writing your essays; short answer questions can be tricky to answer and you don’t want to be caught unaware and stressed right before submitting your application.” — Cindy Haw, Class of 2019 MBA student at HEC Paris
“In addition to classic interview part, HEC MBA applicants are also required to make a short presentation on any topic. Choosing the right topic is challenging. I wanted it to be entertaining (not too specialized or technical), yet relevant to the business school application process. So I chose a topic I was passionate about: ballet with an added “business” twist. The title of my work was “What Sergey Diaghilev and his ‘Ballets Russes’ can teach us about running a company?”– Ly Nguyen, Class of 2019 MBA student at HEC Paris
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