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3 Ways to Demonstrate Fit and Interest in Your Application

From curriculum structure to school culture, MBA program fit is one of the most important factors that applicants should consider when determining which business school for applicants to apply. Admissions officers often seek out applicants who can align their career goals and interests to a B-school’s specific offerings.

Stacy Blackman, founder of Stacy Blackman Consulting, recently shared a few tips on how applicants can demonstrate fit within their application and show adcoms that they’ve done their research.


To demonstrate fit with a B-school, mention specific courses that align with your career goals. Blackman recommends adding these mentions to both your essays and interviews.

“Say you want to start your own company one day, but your background is heavy in marketing and light on finance—or vice versa,” Blackmna says. “Name-check the essential classes each program offers that will expand your tool kit and prepare you to scratch that entrepreneurial itch.”

Additionally, you can call out specific school clubs, conferences, or competitions that you’re interested in taking full advantage of as a student.

“Offerings such as finance clubs, marketing conferences, new venture competitions, etc., can help students deepen their expertise in a specific industry,” Blackman says. “Mention these kinds of program details whenever you’re talking about your career goals. For instance, you could talk about how being in the PE VC club will help you build your network in that area. Likewise, hearing industry leaders who come to speak on campus will allow you to grow your knowledge of the latest trends and insights.”


Many business schools offer international experiences for students to gain a global perspective in their studies. At Harvard Business School, for instance, there’s the Field Immersion Experiences for Leadership Development (FIELD) course, where students participate in a one-week immersion at a global partner company’s location.

Blackman says it can be helpful to highlight such programs, especially if you have a gap in international experience as an applicant.

“Whether your future goals revolve around an industry that’s global or you have a passion for expanding your horizons, make sure you investigate what kind of international experiences are available at the programs you’re interested in,” she says.


Say you’ve done a ton of research on a B-school’s course selection. A good way to showcase your research and demonstrate your interest in that B-school, Blackman says, is to name drop a professor or even a current student.

“Mentioning current students you’ve talked to is a savvy way to show that you have thoroughly researched the school,” Blackman says. “But don’t just say, ‘I talked to Claire Thomas, a second-year student, about her experience.’ Instead, incorporate a specific detail about the school that the person mentioned. So a better sentence would be, ‘After talking with second-year student Claire Thomas about my future goals, she said I should plan to take Digital Media Strategies with Professor Weinstein.’ That way, you not only mention somebody there; you now have a specific idea of something you want to do because of their recommendation.”

Sources: Stacy Blackman Consulting, US News, Harvard Business School

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