UPDATE- THE TIPS FOR THE DARTMOUTH TUCK 2009 MBA APPLICATION ARE NOW AVAILABLE ONLINE- PLEASE POST QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS TO THE NEW POST.
Application and CSQ Due Decision Date
Early Action Round Oct. 10, 2007 Dec. 14, 2007
Nov. Round Nov. 14, 2007 Feb. 8, 2008
Jan. Round Jan. 9, 2008 Mar. 21, 2008
April Round Apr. 2, 2008 May 16, 2008
Tuck’s 2008 questions are identical to last year’s questions. My comments are also virtually identical, but I am placing them here for your convenience. Just a few, minor tweaks on my part. The remainder of my comments are in red.
Please respond fully but concisely to the following essay questions. Compose each of your answers offline in separate document files and upload them individually in the appropriate spaces below. Although there is no restriction on the length of your response, most applicants use, on average, 500 words for each essay. There are no right or wrong answers. Please double-space your responses.
1. Why is an MBA a critical next step toward your short- and long-term career goals? Why is Tuck the best MBA program for you? (If you are applying for a joint or dual degree, please explain how the additional degree will contribute to those goals.)
Note that the MBA is a “step” towards a goal. That means you have to briefly discuss the path you have been on and then reflect on your reasons for wanting an MBA and specifically a Tuck MBA to go in the direction you want to go. You have to know a lot about Tuck as well as your goals to respond effectively to this question. Why do you want a program that stresses the integration of business functions? Why do you want a small, tight-knit program? Which of Tuck’s strengths appeal to you? How will they help you achieve your goals?
2. Tuck defines leadership as “inspiring others to strive and enabling them to accomplish great things.” Describe a time when you exercised such leadership. Discuss the challenges you faced and the results you achieved. What characteristics helped you to be effective, and what areas do you feel you need to develop in order to be a better leader?
This question is also a repeat and reveals the importance Tuck, like many MBA programs, places on leadership..
Have you inspired a troubled teen to apply himself academically? Have you chaired a fund raiser that raised a record amount of money? Have you captained a sports team that led your intra-mural or company league? Have you been a team lead on a project that came in on time and under budget? Are you head of a sales team? These would all be examples of leadership. How did you inspire your teammates to achieve? Answer all elements in the question.
3. Discuss the most difficult constructive criticism or feedback you have received. How did you address it? What have you learned from it?
This is a new question for this year.
Leadership development is an important part of the Tuck program. Within that facet of Tuck life, self assessment and peer assessment play an important role. Can you take and grow from criticism? Show the adcom reader that you can by showing him or her that you already have done so. Provide the feedback and if necessary explain why it was difficult for you to address. Then describe the steps you took to respond to the criticism and improve. Finally, show the results: what you learned and ideally how you now effectively handle situations that triggered the initial criticism.
4. Tuck seeks candidates of various backgrounds who can bring new perspectives to our community. How will your unique personal history, values, and/or life experiences contribute to the culture at Tuck?
Tuck may be small and rural, but it is no backwater. And it is fiercely proud of its diversity — in all senses of the word. It also wants people who will contribute to the school. When I visited Tuck in 2005 for the International Educational Consultants Conference I was struck by the variety of events within Tuck and the larger Dartmouth community. Clearly, to answer this question well you must reflect on your background, but you also need to study the activities, clubs, and programs available at Tuck. What are the distinctive elements of your background? How will it enable you to contribute at Tuck?
5. (Optional) Please provide any additional insight or information that you have not addressed elsewhere that may be helpful in reviewing your application (e.g., unusual choice of evaluators, weaknesses in academic performance, unexplained job gaps or
changes, etc.). Complete this question only if you feel your candidacy is not fully represented by this application.
Another repeat. It is almost impossible for 4 500-word essay plus a bunch of boxes, a transcript, and a GMAT score to fully represent the uniqueness and talents of a truly impressive candidate. That comment has nothing to do with writing style and everything to do with the complexity of accomplished human beings. In my opinion this “optional essay” is optional in name only.
6. (To be completed by all reapplicants) How have you strengthened your candidacy since you last applied? Please reflect on how you have grown personally and professionally.
Straightforward. What has changed about you that would compel Tuck to admit you this year when it rejected you last year?