MBA Application is Now Live...with 1 Essay!


MP Guru

Our UCLA Anderson MBA Class of 2023 application is now live! We’re excited to announce key updates:

  • Only 1 essay response required
  • Streamlined application questions
  • Clearer and easier to follow application and instructions

Our one essay question asks: How have events of the past year influenced the impact you would like to make in your community, career, or both? (250 words maximum)

The goal of our essay question is to allow you to reflect on events that influenced you in your personal or professional lives, or in society in general. Through this essay question, we are hoping to get to know you better by learning how you hope to leave your mark and positively impact those around you. We’ll give you opportunities to tell us about your specific career goals and interest in our program in other parts of our application.

With our first application round deadline a few months away, here are some next steps to get started on now to provide helpful application tips, program information, and student insights:

Wishing you all good luck and please stay in touch with the MBA Admissions Office with any questions!

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Himanshi Agarwal

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Tips for creating the best MBA essays
Here are some important things to remember when writing your MBA essays.

Show who you are in a background essay
Use this opportunity to reveal your values and personality, the obstacles you’ve overcome, and the seminal experiences that have shaped you into the person you are today. No two people have the same history. Use stories and examples to make your background bright and stand out to demonstrate what makes you special. Discuss how your history has brought you to this point. What is there in your background that compels you to pursue an MBA at this time?
Show your direction in the goals essay
Use this opportunity to show that you have clear direction and purpose based on experience and planning. Business school is not another opportunity to “find yourself.” Even if you have had one career path and will use your MBA to launch another career, this essay must describe the reasons behind your career-change, your new goals, and how the program will help you achieve them.
Use your optional essay to explain negatives in your stats
If your GPA was lower than you would have liked early in your undergraduate education, use your essay to show how you learned from this experience. Everyone makes mistakes. How you deal with your mistakes shows a lot to the admissions committee – determination, discipline, success, resilience, and breadth of experience are qualities that will serve you well in your MBA studies and later in life. Be sure that you explain your negatives and don’t try to justify them. Show that you understand the mistake you made, learned from it and changed as a result of processing the experience. That response shows maturity. Justifying – instead of learning or changing – is a sign of immaturity. MBA programs want mature adults. Almost all of them have made mistakes.
Say what you mean, and mean what you say
Admissions committees read thousands of essays during each admissions round. A concise, well thought-out essay will have them reading yours to the end. You need examples and stories to support your statements and make your essay interesting and readable. Each of these needs to be to the point. These professionals are trained to spot an essay that is full of fluff and without substance.Avoid rambling and the use of keywords that you think the reader wants to see. A non-substantive essay will lead the reader to conclude that you, too, are without substance.
Find your passion
This relates to tip #4 above. You want to grab the reader right away and create an essay that will keep their attention to the very end – and leave them wanting to meet you and get to know you even better. In other words, offer you a coveted interview! Find a theme, and weave it throughout your essay. If you can identify a passion that you had from an early age and follow it through the different stages of your life, you will have an interesting, readable essay. Connect your passion to your childhood and you professional and extracurricular experiences and accomplishments. Demonstrate how your passion will influence your future career and serve the community at the school you want to attend.
Focus on your professional experience and achievements
Not everyone has a passion that they have carried with them throughout their life. However, since you are planning on attending an MBA program, you must have had professional and personal achievements. Highlight your professional skills and successes, as well as personal accomplishments. Show how these experiences and achievements have brought you to this point, and how they have influenced your long-term plans and reasons for pursuing an MBA.
Highlight your experience in your EMBA essay
An applicant to an Executive MBA program is an executive or manager currently in the workforce, usually with at least eight years of business experience. As an EMBA student you will be expected to excel in your coursework while continuing to hold down your full-time job. You must demonstrate significant leadership, impact, potential, and the legitimate need for the degree to be accepted. Highlight your current responsibilities and recent achievements, as well as your skill sets. Discuss your goals and how an EMBA will help you reach them. Include how you will positively impact the community at the program you are applying to.