This is the time of year when applicants planning to apply for 2007 should be assessing their strengths and weaknesses. Frequently, an objective assessment reveals that community service is not what the candidate or the schools would like to see.
To understand what community service is and its importance, please see "Why is Community Service So Important."
I am sometimes asked the following about community service:
- Is it a requirement at the top schools?
- If I haven’t volunteered since graduating college because I am working a gazillion hours, would it even help me to start now. Wouldn’t the adcoms see my community service as a ploy?
- If you come from a country like the US where service is encouraged, then service is almost mandatory at the top schools. Remember, community service has a broad definition, but some form of community service is important to your application’s success.
- Many people applying to top MBA programs work a gazillion hours. And the most successful ones apply with some kind of community service. They are your competition. If you don’t have it, start it. While yes, it would be better if you had a track record going back before April 2006, you can’t go back in time. You can only start NOW.
Click on the next link for more on community service in the MBA admissions process.