He waited for Dartmouth’s career center to open to get some quick feedback on his work, did his final edits, and then handed the essay in just before the 10 a.m. ONE OF 1,121 STUDENTS WHO APPLIED AND ONE OF ONLY 106 TO GET IN ON 2 2Six weeks later last May, after an on-campus interview, he received a telephone call from Dee Leopold, then managing director of MBA admissions and now head of the school’s 2 2 program. “I thought wow, I have been given an incredible opportunity and I want to make the most of it.
“I was practicing piano in the basement of a building without cell service so I missed the call,” says Bajpai. I just felt a strange desire to go to the library and start working. I really want to spend the next four years learning as much as possible so I can eventually do something impactful back home in India.”Bajpai was one of 1,121 students who applied to Harvard’s 2 2 program and one of only 106 who was admitted and committed to acquiring work experience before showing up as a first-year MBA student in three to four years.
But competition for a place on a top course is as intense as ever and may have even increased recently, according to admissions consultants.
The acceptance rate has increased slightly at the top-10 Financial Times ranked schools (mostly US) that provide data, according to a Business Because analysis, from a 10% average in 2017 to a 10.95% in 2018.
“Losing applicants of lower quality in the pool would have exactly zero impact on the quality of the student body.” Chioma does not see falling applications and rising acceptance rates as a concern for schools.
“Business schools have experienced this trend before and recognize the cyclical nature of the admissions business.“If there are insights that I tink would be helpful as they face other interviews or career searching, I offer them.I also try to make sure they hear loud and clear that the decision they received this year from HBS doesn’t mean never.2 2 would not be a very well-designed program if it left talented and aspiring leaders felling that they had received a ‘final’ decision from HBS.If you don’t get in, we would hope to see you in another few years or at another business school.“I was always interested in doing an MBA and just waiting for the time to apply,” the Costa Rica native says.“I was wrapping up a solid internship with Apple and knew I could get a good letter of recommendation from my manager.“But applicants should never assume an admissions offer is theirs for the taking.Submitting the best application should still be the goal.” Anecdotally, admissions consultant Stacy Blackman says the quality of MBA applications to the elite programs is much higher than previously, in terms of diversity of industry, function, and geography.The marginal increase in acceptance rates amid a more impressive applicant pool may in fact signal that it’s getting harder to secure a business school place, she says.“Superstars are many in the elite MBA applicant pool in this current climate where the US economy is strong and employers are giving young professionals an incredible amount of leadership opportunity,” says Stacy.