The Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth has a small student body and a rural location, combined with world-class faculty and academic focus. Tuck has spent time focusing on a clear set of criteria for admissions, and has informed candidates that successful applicants will demonstrate that they are smart, nice, accomplished and aware.
“The two essays map directly to aware and nice,” explains Luke Anthony Peña, executive director of admissions and financial aid at the Tuck School, in an announcement regarding the essay updates. “The essays invite reflection on these criteria because you have opportunity elsewhere to demonstrate that you are smart, through your GMAT, GRE and transcripts, and accomplished, per your resume.”
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Essay One: Tuck students are aware of how their individuality adds to the fabric of Tuck. Tell us who you are and what you will contribute. (500 words)
Make sure you have spent time learning about Tuck and why you think you are a fit with the community. This essay will demonstrate that you are aware of your own personality and that you can understand how you interact with others. By reaching out to current students and alumni you can learn more about the Tuck experience and understand better how you fit in.
Once you understand Tuck, think about who you are and the experiences that have shaped you. This essay would be an ideal place to talk about some of your past experiences in various communities and what you have contributed or learned.
If you are struggling to come up with a topic to discuss, talk to your friends and family about any stories that remind them of your unique personality and how you interact with others. Sometimes talking with the people who know you the best can aid your self-awareness.
Essay Two: Tuck students are nice, and invest generously in one another’s success. Share an example of how you helped someone else succeed. (500 words)
Tuck is a highly team oriented culture, and it is crucial to be a nice person that truly wants to help others. This essay seeks to understand your personality while working with a team. While it may be tempting to use an example of mentorship or volunteering with the less fortunate, a more powerful example will be when you were nice to a peer or someone in competition with you. It’s often easy to be nice in a low stakes environment, but less common to be nice when it may not personally benefit you.
Think about your behavior in a team. Do you help your teammates understand issues or argue with them? How do you resolve conflict? When have you helped someone when it was not noticed or required? Choose a time when you have truly been a nice and helpful teammate and then explain the situation, what you did, and the result.
If there were any lessons learned that you have applied in successful teamwork since then it will be useful to describe those lessons.
1. Share your short-term goals. (50 words)
2. Share your long-term goals. (50 words)
3. How did you arrive at these goals? (75 words)
4. How will Tuck help you achieve these goals? (75 words)
Replacing the career goals essay with four short answer questions allows you to communicate what you hope to accomplish with your Tuck MBA clearly and concisely.
Ideally you have spent some time considering what your short- and long-term goals are post-MBA, and why you think an MBA is the right choice. You may have arrived at your goals through introspection and self-study (which would demonstrate awareness) or perhaps you spoke with people around your industry and learned more about yourself through interaction. Describe the process of your goal-setting and then spend a bit of time on why Tuck is the right place for the next step. With only 75 words, you don’t have a lot of excess space, but can include one or two specifics about the program that are important to you.