Category Archives: UCLA Anderson Advice

Tuesday Tips: UCLA Anderson Fall 2016 MBA Essay Tips

UCLA Anderson is a small and close-knit school with particular focus on entrepreneurship, entertainment, real estate and other major industries in Southern California. While UCLA has a dominant position in the region it is also …

UCLA Anderson essay tipsUCLA Anderson is a small and close-knit school with particular focus on entrepreneurship, entertainment, real estate and other major industries in Southern California. While UCLA has a dominant position in the region it is also a nationally known program that will position you well in whatever career you pursue.

Anderson can be selective about the composition of each MBA class, therefore your fit with the values and principles of the school is of primary importance. When approaching this set of essays make sure you understand what Anderson will do for you and what you plan to bring to the community.

We have helped countless applicants achieve their UCLA Anderson dreams. Contact us to learn how Stacy Blackman Consulting can help you.

Required Essay
We believe that the best results are achieved when you share success, think fearlessly and drive change. With this in mind, what are your goals at UCLA Anderson and in your short-term and long-term career? (750 words maximum)

UCLA Anderson’s values are embodied by “share success, think fearlessly and drive change” and by demonstrating that you possess those qualities you will be demonstrating your fit with UCLA Anderson. Thorough school research will provide examples you can use to describe why these values and principles drive your goals while attending UCLA Anderson. Your career goals should be examined through the filter of Anderson’s values and how you plan to use those values in your post-Anderson life.

When structuring this essay consider telling one or two pivotal stories to illuminate who you are. UCLA is looking for personal expression in this essay, and to understand how you are different from other applicants. Consider the turning points or moments that triggered reflection for you. Have you experienced a significant personal setback? What is your family background? Have you lived outside your home country? When did you face a turning point or make a big decision about your career? What were some of your proudest accomplishments? What moments have called upon your need to collaborate, lead or innovate?

For the second part of the essay briefly explain what you plan to do immediately after graduation, and then what you want to accomplish over the long-term with your career. A career path that focuses on demonstrated passions and interests throughout your life is going to be most compelling as you write this essay and each section should bridge seamlessly into the next.

For the part of the essay focusing on UCLA Anderson’s part in your plans, UCLA specifically requests citing specific classes, professors and programs. To express a bit more on the personal side it will be helpful to include the social and extracurricular aspects that attract you to the small and close-knit experience at Anderson. Be specific as you discuss the clubs and conferences that are unique to the UCLA MBA.

Optional Essay
Are there any extenuating circumstances in your profile about which the Admissions Committee should be aware? (250 words maximum)

It is important to focus on explanations rather than excuses in this essay. Potential extenuating circumstances may be a very low GPA, academic probation or using a recommender other than your current supervisor. Clearly explain the situation, and if it is a situation from the past, explain why you have changed. Providing evidence that you will not repeat the actions in question will help to solidify your answer.

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Tuesday Tips: 2014 UCLA Anderson Essay Tips

Last year UCLA Anderson reduced the required essays to only one, following the trend started by Harvard. UCLA’s essays were previously focused on career goals and last year’s single essay only asked about short- and …

Last year UCLA Anderson reduced the required essays to only one, following the trend started by Harvard. UCLA’s essays were previously focused on career goals and last year’s single essay only asked about short- and long-term goals. This year the one required question adds an additional element to the question by asking a more open-ended question to get at applicants’ personal lives and values.

With over a decade of experience helping applicants just like you, contact us to learn how Stacy Blackman Consulting can help you define your best essay content.

Required Essay
UCLA Anderson is distinguished by three defining principles: Share Success, Think Fearlessly, Drive Change. What principles have defined your life and pre-MBA career? How do you believe that UCLA Anderson’s principles, and the environment they create, will help you attain your post-MBA career goals? (750 words maximum)

This single required essay is actually three essays in one. First you will need to think about the principles, or values, that have influenced your life and career. Second your post MBA career goals need to be defined to answer the final part of the question. Third, you will need to explain why an MBA, specifically an Anderson MBA, will help you achieve your goals.

When you reflect upon the principles that have defined your life consider telling one or two key stories to illuminate who you are. UCLA is looking for personal expression in this essay, and to understand how you are different from other applicants. Consider the turning points or moments that triggered reflection for you. Have you experienced a significant personal setback? What is your family background? Have you lived outside your home country? When did you face a turning point or make a big decision about your career? What were some of your proudest accomplishments? What moments have called upon your need to collaborate, lead or innovate?

For the second part of the essay briefly explain what you plan to do immediately after graduation, and then what you want to accomplish over the long-term with your career. A career path that focuses on demonstrated passions and interests throughout your life is going to be most compelling as you write this essay and each section should bridge seamlessly into the next.

For the part of the essay focusing on UCLA Anderson’s part in your plans, UCLA specifically requests citing specific classes, professors and programs. To express a bit more on the personal side it will be helpful to include the social and extracurricular aspects that attract you to the small and close-knit experience at Anderson. Be specific as you discuss the clubs and conferences that are unique to the UCLA MBA.

Optional Essay
Are there any extenuating circumstances in your profile about which the Admissions Committee should be aware? (250 words maximum)

It is important to focus on explanations rather than excuses in this essay. Potential extenuating circumstances may be a very low GPA, academic probation or using a recommender other than your current supervisor. Clearly explain the situation, and if it is a situation from the past, explain why you have changed. Providing evidence that you will not repeat the actions in question will be very important.

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UCLA Anderson School of Management MBA Essay Tips

UCLA Anderson always kept the application process streamlined, with only two required essays. This year the required essays were reduced to one, focusing only on your career goals. With such a limited amount of space …

UCLA Anderson always kept the application process streamlined, with only two required essays. This year the required essays were reduced to one, focusing only on your career goals. With such a limited amount of space to highlight everything you may want to communicate to UCLA Anderson you will need to think seriously about the stories you want to tell.

With over a decade of experience helping applicants just like you, contact us to learn how Stacy Blackman Consulting can help you define your best essay content.

Required Essay
What are your short-term and long-term career goals, and how will an MBA from UCLA Anderson specifically help you achieve these goals? (750 words maximum)

The UCLA MBA program is asking for a clear set of career goals that will demonstrate the need for an MBA from UCLA Anderson. Since you are not directly asked to explain your entire career path, focus on the high points that are most relevant to your career goals. When did you face a turning point or make a big decision about your career? What were some of your proudest accomplishments? If you are a management consultant now and want to become an entrepreneur, what have you learned and experienced that will help you with those plans?

It may be relevant to provide background that highlights your career passions and sets up your future goals. Briefly explain what you plan to do immediately after graduation, and then what you want to accomplish over the long-term with your career. A career path that focuses on demonstrated passions and interests throughout your life is going to be most compelling as you write this essay.

Along with citing specific classes, professors and programs that fit into your career goals, include the social and extracurricular aspects that attract you to the small and close-knit experience at Anderson. Be specific as you discuss the clubs and conferences that are unique to the UCLA MBA.

Optional Essay
Are there any extenuating circumstances in your profile about which the Admissions Committee should be aware? (250 words maximum)

It is important to focus on explanations rather than excuses in this essay. Potential extenuating circumstances may be a very low GPA, academic probation or using a recommender other than your current supervisor. Clearly explain the situation, and if it is a situation from the past, explain why you have changed. Providing evidence that you will not repeat the actions in question will be very important.

Re-applicant Essay
Please describe your career progress since you last applied and ways in which you have enhanced your candidacy. Include updates on short-term and long-term career goals, as well as your continued interest in UCLA Anderson. (700 words maximum).

The reapplication essay requires demonstrating significant strides since your last application. Keep in mind that the admissions committee will have access to your previous application. This question is specific about requiring an update on your career progress since your last application. This may be a difficult question to answer if you have not been promoted or taken a new job, so think about the areas in your career that have been improved since last year. Did you take on new responsibility? What about projects or leadership opportunities? While refining your goals is progress and can enhance your application, make sure your story is consistent with your last application and that you have thoroughly explained any changes in your thinking since the last time you applied.

Soul searching and feedback from others likely set you on the path to improve one or more areas that may have been weak in your last application. This essay is your opportunity to outline your better GMAT score, classes you took, additional extracurriculars, or a significant increase in responsibility at work.

The third part of this essay is to demonstrate how you will contribute to the UCLA MBA program. If you are a reapplicant you have likely had the time to learn even more about the school since your last application, and your research will pay off in this essay. Be specific about your skills and how you will contribute, along with the aspects of UCLA Anderson that will be of benefit to your goals.

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Tuesday Tips – UCLA Anderson MBA Essay Tips

UCLA Anderson has only two required essays for first-time applicants, which will allow you only 1500 words to communicate directly with the admissions committee and make your case for admission to UCLA Anderson. Your personal …

UCLA Anderson has only two required essays for first-time applicants, which will allow you only 1500 words to communicate directly with the admissions committee and make your case for admission to UCLA Anderson.

Your personal qualities are of utmost importance to the admissions committee. With a class limited to 360 students, and a desire to create a diverse and interesting atmosphere, your personal answer to essay one will help make your case just as much as your goals and accomplishments in essay two.

What is your proudest achievement outside the workplace, and how has it impacted you? (700 words maximum)

Starting this set of essays with a personal question about your achievements outside of work establishes UCLA MBA’s interest in knowing what you are passionate about and how you may exercise leadership outside of work. When approaching this question, keep your overall application strategy in mind, and make sure you are presenting a holistic view of yourself. Much like Stanford’s “what matters most” essay, brainstorming an overall theme that can take you from the personal tone of Essay 1 to the career goals in Essay 2 could provide a thread to unite your application strategy.

Specific examples are always the best way to demonstrate your personal qualities without sounding generic. In this essay you are invited to tell a personal story. You are unique and an interesting activity outside of work can be an effective way to set the tone for your application holistically. If you choose effectively, your story will support the overall theme of your essays and support what you say about your career and personal development.

What are your short-term and long-term career goals, and how will an MBA from UCLA Anderson specifically help you achieve these goals? (700 words maximum)

The UCLA MBA program is asking for a clear set of career goals that will demonstrate the need for an MBA from UCLA Anderson. Since you are not directly asked to explain your entire career path, focus on the high points that are most relevant to your career goals. When did you face a turning point or make a big decision about your career? What were some of your proudest accomplishments? If you are a management consultant now and want to become an entrepreneur, what have you learned and experienced that will help you with those plans?

Because you have effectively set the stage with question one, you have likely established your passions and personal interests, which will back up your career goals. Briefly explain what you plan to do immediately after graduation, and then what you want to accomplish over the long-term with your career. Keep in mind that UCLA recently rehabbed their curriculum to train MBA candidates more specifically for their chosen careers. While your education will still have some flexibility, you are more likely to be a strong fit with UCLA Anderson if you can see yourself benefiting from the program and its educational approach. Along with citing specific classes, professors and programs that fit into your career goals, include the social and extracurricular aspects that attract you to the small and close-knit experience at Anderson. Be specific as you discuss the clubs and conferences that are unique to the UCLA MBA.

Optional Essay
Are there any extenuating circumstances in your profile about which the Admissions Committee should be aware? (250 words maximum)

Focusing on explanations in this essay, rather than excuses, is very important. Potential extenuating circumstances may be a very low GPA, academic probation or using a recommender other than your current supervisor. Clearly explain the situation, and if it is a situation from the past, explain why you have changed. Providing evidence that you will not repeat the actions in question will be very important.

Re-applicant Essay

Please describe your career progress since you last applied and ways in which you have enhanced your candidacy. Include updates on short-term and long-term career goals, as well as your continued interest in UCLA Anderson. (700 words maximum)

The reapplication essay requires demonstrating significant strides since your last application. Keep in mind that the admissions committee will have access to your previous application. The UCLA MBA specifically asks for an update on your career progress since your last application. You may not have been promoted or taken a new job, so think about the areas in your career that have been improved since last year. Did you take on new responsibility? What about projects or leadership opportunities? While refining your goals is progress and can enhance your application, make sure your story is consistent with your last application and that you have thoroughly explained any changes in your thinking since the last time you applied.

Soul searching and feedback from others likely set you on the path to improve one or more areas that may have been weak in your last application. This essay is your opportunity to outline your better GMAT score, classes you took, additional extracurriculars, or a significant increase in responsibility at work.

The third part of this essay is to demonstrate how you will contribute to the UCLA MBA program. If you are a reapplicant you have likely had the time to learn even more about the school since your last application, and your research will pay off in this essay. Be specific about your skills and how you will contribute, along with the aspects of UCLA Anderson that will be of benefit to your goals.

Looking for help with your UCLA MBA application strategy? Contact us to learn how Stacy Blackman Consulting can help you define your best essay content.

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Tuesday Tips – UCLA Anderson MBA Essay Tips

The deadlines, essay questions, and online application are ready for your UCLA Anderson application. UCLA Anderson has only two required essays for first-time applicants, which will allow you only 1500 words to communicate directly with …

The deadlines, essay questions, and online application are ready for your UCLA Anderson application.

UCLA Anderson has only two required essays for first-time applicants, which will allow you only 1500 words to communicate directly with the admissions committee and make your case for admission to UCLA Anderson. With a redesigned curriculum that focuses heavily on molding a class that is attractive to recruiters, career goals will need to be clear and actionable. Your personal qualities are still of utmost importance to the admissions committee. With a class limited to 360 students, and a desire to create a diverse and interesting atmosphere, your answer to essay one will help make your case just as much as your goals and accomplishments in essay two.

The two required essays for first-time applicants are:
What event or life experience has had the greatest influence in shaping your character and why? (750 words maximum)
Starting this set of essays with a personal question about your background establishes UCLA MBA’s interest in seeing the genuine person you are. When approaching this question, keep your overall application strategy in mind, and make sure you are presenting a holistic view of yourself. Much like Stanford’s “what matters most” essay, brainstorming an overall theme that can take you from the personal tone of Essay 1 to the career goals in Essay 2 could provide a thread to unite your application strategy.

Specific examples are always the best way to demonstrate your personal qualities without sounding generic. In this essay you are invited to tell a personal story. You are unique and a vivid personal memory can be an effective way to set the tone for your application holistically. If you choose effectively, your personal memory will support the overall theme of your essays and support what you say about your career, community and personal development.

What are your short-term and long-term career goals, and how will an MBA from UCLA Anderson specifically help you achieve these goals? (750 words maximum)
The UCLA MBA program is asking for a clear set of career goals that will demonstrate the need for an MBA from UCLA Anderson. Since you are not directly asked to explain your entire career path, focus on the high points that are most relevant to your career goals. When did you face a turning point or make a big decision about your career? What were some of your proudest accomplishments? If you are a management consultant now and want to become an entrepreneur, what have you learned and experienced that will help you with those plans?

Because you have effectively set the stage with question one, you have likely established your passions and personal interests, which will back up your career goals. Briefly explain what you plan to do immediately after graduation, and then what you want to accomplish over the long-term with your career. Keep in mind that UCLA recently rehabbed their curriculum to train MBA candidates more specifically for their chosen careers. While your education will still have some flexibility, you are more likely to be a strong fit with UCLA Anderson if you can see yourself benefiting from the new educational offerings. Along with citing specific classes, professors and programs that fit into your career goals, include the social and extracurricular aspects that attract you to the small and close knit experience at Anderson. Be specific as you discuss the clubs and conferences that are unique to the UCLA MBA.

Optional Essay
Are there any extenuating circumstances in your profile about which the Admissions Committee should be aware? Please use your best judgment. (250 words maximum)
Focusing on explanations in this essay, rather than excuses, is very important. Potential extenuating circumstances may be a very low GPA, academic probation or using a recommender other than your current supervisor. Clearly explain the situation, and if it is a situation from the past, explain why you have changed. Providing evidence that you will not repeat the actions in question will be very important.

Re-applicant Essay
Please describe your career progress since you last applied and ways in which you have enhanced your candidacy. Include updates on short-term and long-term career goals, as well as your continued interest in UCLA Anderson. (750 words maximum)
The reapplication essay requires demonstrating significant strides since your last application. Keep in mind that the admissions committee will have access to your previous application. The UCLA MBA specifically asks for an update on your career progress since your last application. You may not have been promoted or taken a new job, so think about the areas in your career that have been improved since last year. Did you take on new responsibility? What about projects or leadership opportunities? While refining your goals is progress and can enhance your application, make sure your story is consistent with your last application and that you have thoroughly explained any changes in your thinking since the last time you applied.
Soul searching and feedback from others likely set you on the path to improve one or more areas that may have been weak in your last application. This essay is your opportunity to outline your better GMAT score, classes you took, additional extracurriculars, or a significant increase in responsibility at work.

The third part of this essay is to demonstrate how you will contribute to the UCLA MBA program. If you are a reapplicant you have likely had the time to learn even more about the school since your last application, and your research will pay off in this essay. Be specific about your skills and how you will contribute, along with the aspects of UCLA Anderson that will be of benefit to your goals.

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Admissions Interview Tips from the UCLA MBA Program

Earlier this week, the MBA Insider Blog at the UCLA MBA Program offered up some timely insider tips  to help you prepare for the MBA admissions interview experience. As we’ve noted before, the purpose of the …

Earlier this week, the MBA Insider Blog at the UCLA MBA Program offered up some timely insider tips  to help you prepare for the MBA admissions interview experience.

As we’ve noted before, the purpose of the interview is twofold: it gives AdCom a chance to see a candidate’s personality, leadership qualities and motivation for pursuing an MBA; and it also lets applicants tell their own story beyond the essays and other materials in the application.

The good news? This advice from the UCLA MBA holds true pretty much no matter where you’re applying.

Interviews are a dialogue or exchange between two people. Steer away from pre-rehearsed speech and over reliance on your résumé. Admissions is interested in getting to know you as an individual, so follow the queues of the interviewer.

The length of the interview does not indicate how well the interview went. Though the UCLA MBA schedules 30 minute interviews, they may vary a bit.  Deviations from the schedule are random and unrelated to an individual candidate.

Do not expect the interviewer to give you feedback ”“ literally or figuratively.  Be careful to avoid any interpretation of verbal or non-verbal communication, as both may mislead you.

Interviews are not a popularity contest. The interviewer is assessing your fit for the UCLA MBA program, not whether or not the two of you would make good or best friends.

For more guidance on how interviews are structured at the UCLA MBA, read the entire post here, or click for more posts containing Application Advice for the UCLA MBA.

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