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Your Guide To The MBA Waitlist

Decisions for Round 1 are approaching.

Despite the amount of work you’ve put in, some of these decisions will result in applicants being placed on the dreaded “waitlist.”

Stacy Blackman, of Stacy Blackman Consulting, recently shared what you should do if you find yourself there.


This decision, Blackman says, boils down to your personal interest level in an MBA program.

“If it’s your top choice, you may want to remain on the list until school begins,” Blackman writes. “This could mean moving quickly and giving up a deposit on a school that has offered you firm admission.”

However, if the school isn’t of much interest to you, Blackman suggests not accepting your spot on the waitlist.

“If the program is not your first choice, or you would like to settle your MBA plans before school starts, you may choose to remove your name from the list,” Blackman writes. “If that’s the case, do so promptly and give someone else a chance at their MBA dream.”


Applicants could be waitlisted for a number of reasons. But, according to Esther Manga of Find MBA, the top three reasons are because of the following: unclear post-MBA goals, low test scores, and lack of quantitative preparation.

The key in improving your odds when on the waitlist is take action on what you’re lacking in your application. Highlighting improvements is critical during this phase.

“A promotion, raise, or an award is almost always a useful piece of information to share,” Manga writes.


It’s equally important to be cautious about how you’re communicating to admissions officials when you’re on the waitlist. Blackman suggests applicants to make sure that every interaction they have with admissions officials adds value to their application.

“Exercise restraint in communications, but also convey your enthusiasm whenever possible, as they want to be sure you’ll say yes if admitted,” Blackman writes. “An information overload will likely have a negative effect on your candidacy, so use your good judgement here.”

Sources: Stacy Blackman Consulting, Find MBA