How to Get Into a Top MBA Program

Four Tips for MBA Applicants

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The term 'top MBA program' is used for any business program that is consistently ranked among the best business schools in a specialization (such as accounting), region (such as the Midwest), or country (such as the United States). The term might also refer to schools that are included in global rankings.

Top MBA programs are tough to get into; admissions can be extremely competitive at the most selective schools. But in most cases, the hard work is well worth the effort. We asked admissions representatives from top schools around the country to share their tips on how to get into a top MBA program. Here's what they had to say.

MBA Admission Tip #1

Christina Mabley, the Director of MBA Admissions at McCombs School of Business, offers this advice to applicants who want to get into a top MBA program - specifically, the McCombs MBA program at The University of Texas at Austin:

"Applications that stand out are ones that complete a good story. Everything in the application should provide a consistent story about why an MBA, why now and why specifically an MBA from McCombs. The application should tell us what you want to get out of the program and conversely, what you feel you will bring to the program."

MBA Admission Tip #2

Admissions reps from Columbia Business School like to say that your interview is your chance to stand out among other applicants. When we contacted them, they specifically said:

''The interview is an opportunity for applicants to demonstrate how they present themselves. Applicants should be prepared to discuss their goals, their accomplishments, and their reason for seeking an MBA.''

MBA Admission Tip #3

The Associate Director of Admissions at Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan offers this advice for getting into their top MBA program:
"Show us through the application, resume, and especially the essays, what is unique about yourself and why you're a good fit for our school. Be professional, know yourself, and research the school to which you're applying."

MBA Admission Tip #4

Isser Gallogly, the Executive Director of MBA Admissions at NYU Stern School of Business, had this to say about getting into NYU Stern's top-ranked MBA program:
"At NYU Stern School of Business, our MBA admissions process is holistic and individualistic. Our Admissions Committee is focused on three key areas: 1) academic ability 2) professional potential and 3) personal characteristics, as well as "fit" with NYU Stern. Throughout the process, we provide our applicants with continual communication and personalized attention. Ultimately, we want to ensure that each student who enrolls believes that Stern is the right fit for his or her personal and professional aspirations.
Many applicants think the Admissions Committee wants to hear what we write on our website, which is not what we are looking for. Ultimately, what makes candidates stand out is when they are self-aware, know what they want and speak from their heart in their application. Each person's story is unique and compelling, and each applicant should tell his or her story. When you read over 6,000 essays in an admissions season, the personalized stories are the ones that make you sit up in your chair."

More Tips on How to Get Into a Top MBA Program

For more advice on how to get into a top MBA program, get more tips straight from admissions officers.

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Your Citation
Schweitzer, Karen. "How to Get Into a Top MBA Program." ThoughtCo, Sep. 7, 2021, Schweitzer, Karen. (2021, September 7). How to Get Into a Top MBA Program. Retrieved from Schweitzer, Karen. "How to Get Into a Top MBA Program." ThoughtCo. (accessed March 31, 2023).