My previous posts on defining your fit with Wharton addressed three of the four components of “The Wharton Difference” (Largest Global Network, Culture of Engagement, and Innovative Leadership Learning). Here I’ll look at the fourth, final component: Global Opportunities.
BUT… you might think, all top MBA programs have a global dimension; why is it part of The Wharton Difference?
The answer lies in how those specific opportunities align with the other three components by emphasizing connection, growth through experience, sharing/collaboration, and exploration. This is evident in the following phrases:
• The Global Opportunities prepare you for “an interconnected world.”
• You will “immerse yourself” in local cultures and business approaches.
• You will “extend” your experience to your classmates as part of a “global community.”
The bolded words above reveal the adcom’s distinct lens on the global dimension: its global resources start with you connecting with other people and groups to understand and eventually impact global business holistically.
BUT… What if your goals don’t include global enterprise? Perhaps you plan to launch an IT initiative in a region of the U.S. where coal mining is dying. Perhaps you plan to develop strategy for domestic healthcare provider chains. In the first case, other countries, e.g. Poland, face the same challenge; perhaps there’s a prospective global collaboration on the horizon! In the second case, perhaps learning from countries with different healthcare systems would give you fresh ideas to adapt.
Today, everyone working anywhere can directly or indirectly identify a global dimension to their work. If it’s not immediately obvious, think further, and you will surely discern how it’s so in your own situation.
To demonstrate fit with Wharton, portray the “Global Opportunities” component in your application:
• Familiarize yourself with both the academic opportunities (majors, Global Modular Courses, Global Immersion Program, and Global Consulting Practicum, and exchange programs) and the extracurricular opportunities (conferences, International Volunteer Program, and Global Career Treks), decide which ones best meet your needs, and discuss how and why in your essay and interview.
• In your essay and interview, as appropriate, include anecdotes and examples about global experiences and the human, cultural, and values-oriented factors beyond the hard facts and numbers (you can include non-business experiences if relevant, even interactions with colleagues from other countries/cultures if you don’t have firsthand international experience).
• In your resume and application form, mention activities with a global or international element.
By Cindy Tokumitsu, author and co-author of numerous ebooks, articles, and special reports, including Why MBA and Best MBA Programs: A Guide to Selecting the Right One. Cindy has advised hundreds of successful applicants in her fifteen years with Accepted.com.