Darden MBA Essays for 2021-2022

Darden MBA essays

Is the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business on your shortlist of target MBA programs? Then get ready to hit the ground running, because the full-time MBA application is now live! Here are the Darden MBA essays for the 2021-2022 admissions cycle.

Darden MBA Essays

This year, Darden will again feature multiple short answer questions, which provides a broader platform to showcase your background and personality. These questions are a great opportunity for you to help the Darden Admissions Committee understand who you are and who you will be at Darden.

New for this year, for the “Leadership and Impact” and “Diversity and Inclusion” questions, you will choose to respond to one of two prompts. Select the prompt that best aligns with your past experiences and the overall narrative you are crafting through your application materials.

Short Answer Questions

Learning Teams are an invaluable peer resource for Darden students as they navigate the core curriculum. Every student is assigned to a Learning Team consisting of 5-6 students from an array of backgrounds and perspectives, and this built-in support system serves as an important connection to the broader Darden community.

  • Tell us what you would want your Learning Team to know about you that is not on your resume. (150 words)
  • Darden strives to identify and cultivate responsible leaders who follow their purpose. Please respond to one of the following prompts (200 words)

Option 1: Tell us about a time when you acted with a team to solve a problem or seize an opportunity. What role did you play? What did you learn from this experience?

Option 2: Tell us about a time you acted to solve a problem for the greater good. What drew you to this issue? What did you learn from this experience?

Darden MBA essays

Diversity and Inclusion Essay

The Darden School develops practices and cultivates a culture that reflect and incorporate the worldviews of its many community members. In this inclusive culture, the community learns important — and sometimes uncomfortable — lessons from one another, resulting in more conscientious global leaders and citizens.

Please respond to one of the following prompts (200 words)

Option 1: Share a time when you learned something related to diversity, equity or inclusion that was previously unknown to you? How did this experience impact your perspective?

Option 2: Share a time when you advocated for a perspective, identity or community different from your own. How did this experience impact your worldview?

Career Goal Essay

What is your short-term, post-MBA goal and how does it align with the long-term vision you have for your career? (150 words)

Darden Worldwide

The Batten Foundation Worldwide Scholarship provides all Darden students in our full-time MBA program with an opportunity to participate in a Darden Worldwide Course.

If you could choose any location in the world, where would you want to travel, and why? (55 words)

Darden MBA essays

Darden Continues Test Flexibility for Class of 2024

In 2020, the coronavirus disrupted the traditional standardized testing schedule worldwide. Subsequently, the Darden School offered increased options for applicants to demonstrate evidence of academic aptitude and accomplishment. This included announcing plans to accept standardized tests including the GMAT, GRE, MCAT, LSAT and the Executive Assessment.

The move proved beneficial for both applicants and the Darden School, adding flexibility and removing barriers. The school expanded this for the most recent admissions cycle included adding a test waiver process.

For candidates who believe they can present a strong case for a standardized test waiver, we invite them to submit a test waiver request. Before submitting a waiver request, we encourage candidates to reflect upon their overall applicant profile as well as the relevant criteria under “Test Score Waivers” in the Application Instructions page of the application. If you have been granted a test waiver, your waiver has been recorded in your application. No additional action required.


Applicants should note that the school recently announced that it is planning to begin the 2021-22 academic year with normal operations and in-person instruction.

For more information on applying, please visit the Darden School admissions site.  If you need guidance on your Darden MBA essays or wish to discuss your MBA plans, reach out for a complimentary analysis of your candidacy. We’re here to help!

SBC’s star-studded consultant team is unparalleled. Our clients benefit from current intelligence that we receive from the former MBA Admissions Officers from Wharton, Columbia CBS and every elite business program in the US and Europe.  These MBA Admissions Officers have chosen to work exclusively with SBC.

Just two of the many superstars on the SBC team:
Meet Anthony, who served as the Associate Director of MBA Admissions at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, where he dedicated over 10 years of expertise.

Meet Erin, who has over seven years of experience working across major institutions, including University of Pennsylvania, Columbia Business School, and NYU’s Stern School of Business.

Tap into this inside knowledge for your MBA applications by requesting a consultation.

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