The Stern Langone part-time MBA essays, together, cover “the whole you” – your professional side and your non-work side. And they require you to address both a highly structured, specific question (essay 1) in conventional written format and a relatively open, “free form” question (essay 2), employing visual elements. The applicants who can best handle this duality are confident, mature applicants; they know what their goals are, have an intellectual appetite for the NYU experience, and welcome the chance to portray their distinct individuality.
NYU Stern Langone 2019-2020 MBA application
Stern Langone MBA essay question #1 (Professional aspirations)
(500 word maximum, double-spaced, 12-point font)
- What are your short and long-term career goals?
- How will the MBA help you achieve them?
You may start by succinctly mentioning your current career situation to set the context. (Warning: Don’t just repeat your resume, but rather make this opening highlight your industry and/or function, as this is an important part of what you’ll bring to the table in a part-time program). Then move on to discuss your short-term goals. Give solid details: position, company, scope of accountability, what you want to accomplish, and how you hope to grow. If you have a formal development program that these goals are based on, it’s good to mention it. To make your goals meaningful and engaging, explain WHY you want to take these steps, what excites and engages you about this anticipated path. Your longer-term goal needs less detail and should of course reflect some reasonable trajectory from the earlier role. Here too, make the reader feel your excitement.
In discussing how the MBA will enable you to achieve your stated goals, describe what new skills and knowledge you need in order to pursue your goals, and how an MBA overall meets those needs. Be specific. You can also add a little about the benefits of Stern specifically.
Stern Langone MBA essay question #2 (Personal expression a.k.a “Pick Six”)
Describe yourself to the Admissions Committee and to your future classmates using six images and corresponding captions. Your uploaded PDF should contain all of the following elements:
- A brief introduction or overview of your “Pick Six” (no more than 3 sentences).
- Six images that help illustrate who you are.
- A one-sentence caption for each of the six images that helps explain why they were selected and are significant to you.
Note: Your visuals may include photos, infographics, drawings, or any other images that best describe you. Your document must be uploaded as a single PDF. The essay cannot be sent in physical form or be linked to a website.
Okay, now the fun part. Seriously! If you don’t have fun with this essay (at least a bit), it won’t “lift off.” That doesn’t mean it has to be jokey or humorous – simply, you should enjoy putting together the visuals and their related meanings to really make your candidacy and your individuality come alive.
One challenge of this essay is finding balance: most people will naturally want to present images of different parts of their lives, different experiences, accomplishments, etc. Yet, having 6 distinct images that together lack any integrating point or message could simply add up to a blur, even if each individual image is interesting. So, use some organizing principle, theme, or approach.
As for those captions – please keep them short. I’ve seen some of these essays where the applicant tried to cram a mini essay into the sentence caption. It enervates the picture and the essay. Adhere to the spirit of the question and make the caption an enhancement, not a thorough explanation. (If you find an image needs lengthy explanation to have meaning, it’s probably not a good one to use for this purpose.)
For more tips on this essay, see this interview with NYU Stern’s Associate Dean of Admissions, Isser Gallogly.
Stern Langone MBA essay question #3 (Additional information – optional)
Please provide any additional information that you would like to bring to the attention of the Admissions Committee. This may include current or past gaps in employment, your undergraduate record or self-reported academic transcript(s), plans to retake the GMAT, GRE, IELT, or TOEFL, or any other relevant information. If you are planning to attend the Langone Part-time MBA program and do not currently live in the NYC Metro Area or the Westchester area, please indicate your plans to pursue the program. If you are planning to relocate to the NYC area, please indicate your plans for employment. (250 word maximum, double spaced, 12 point font)
These instructions don’t explicitly limit the essay to extenuating circumstances or application-specific issues, but the topics Stern suggests are just such issues. Moreover, the phrase “bring to the attention of” doesn’t really invite you to continue marketing yourself. I therefore suggest addressing the types of issues the question presents, or present other information that has a direct bearing on the adcom’s ability to understand your candidacy.
For expert guidance with your NYU Stern Langone MBA application, check out Accepted’s MBA Application Packages, which include comprehensive guidance from an experienced admissions consultant. We’ve helped hundreds of applicants get accepted to top MBA programs and look forward to helping you too!
NYU Stern Langone 2019-2020 MBA application deadlines
|Application Deadline||Decisions Released|
|Round 1||September 15, 2019||December 1, 2019|
|Round 2||October 15, 2019||January 1, 2020|
|Round 3||November 15, 2019||February 1, 2020|
***Disclaimer: Information is subject to change. Please check with individual programs to verify the essay questions, instructions and deadlines.***Want Cindy to help you get Accepted? Click here to get in touch!
• Why MBA?, a guide to acing the MBA goals essay question
• NYU Stern 2018-19 MBA Admissions Scoop: An Interview with Isser Gallogly, a podcast episode
• Your MBA Goals Essay: Get Ready, Get Set, THINK!