UPDATE: THE TIPS FOR UNC KENAN FLAGLER’S 2010 MBA APPLICATION ARE NOW ONLINE. PLEASE POST QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS TO THE NEW POST.
Application Deadline Decisions Released
Early Action Oct 24, 2008 Dec 15, 2008
Round 2 Dec 5, 2008 Feb 9, 2009
Round 3 Jan 9, 2009 Mar 23, 2009
Round 4 Mar 13, 2009 May 4, 2009
* Application Due by Midnight EST
My comments are in red.
UNC Kenan-Flagler encourages you to assess your known talents and potential skills, understand your personal style, and confirm your values and interests. If you do this prior to beginning your MBA studies, you will be better equipped to navigate the many options the MBA program will provide. There is not enough time to do all the activities and take all the courses that will be available to you. It is important, therefore, to make your choices based on your own development plan. Think of the UNC Kenan-Flagler MBA application as a first step toward uncovering the unique attributes and goals that will inform your development plan. Please be thoughtful and reflective in your answers.
Essay One (Required)
What are the 2 or 3 strengths or characteristics that have driven your career success thus far? Do you have other strengths that you would like to leverage in the future? (500 words maximum)
Rather than list Strength 1, Strength 2, and Strength 3, I recommend you start with an anecdote that illustrates ideally 2-3 or your strengths and then analyze how they have contributed to your career success. Remember to describe your achievement in terms of impact and quantify as much as possible. Another approach: Describe the accomplishment anecdotally and then go into the characteristics that contributed to it.
In both cases, also include a paragraph about a trait that you would like to use in future projects and successes.
Essay Two (Required)
Briefly describe the career path you intend to pursue immediately after b-school. Explain why this career option appeals to you and why an MBA is appropriate at this time. (500 words maximum)
What do you see yourself doing immediately upon graduation and for the first five years after you graduate? Based on UNC’s instructions, you need to have a clear direction and goal when you arrive or you will be lost. Describe why this path attracts you. What experiences have convinced you to pursue it? Why do you need an MBA, especially one with UNC’s approach to business education, to proceed down your chosen path.
Essay Three (Required)
What personal qualities or life experiences distinguish you from other applicants? How do these qualities or experiences equip you to contribute to Kenan-Flagler? (500 words maximum)
Everyone has a story. What’s yours? What makes you unique? What hobbies and experiences will differentiate you from the IT guy, consultant, real estate developer, or banker that the adcom just read about? How will your perspective contribute to the classroom and community at Kenan-Flagler?
What do you expect from your MBA program? How and when will you measure the return on your investment in the MBA?
(500 words maximum)
What do you want from your MBA program? Thoroughly go through UNC’s web site and see where its features match your requirements. Let this essay reflect your research, not by spitting back the copy and videos on the web site, but in a deeper way — discuss the Kenan Flagler values and strengths that you identify with most strongly.
In terms of ROI, you can measure ROI in terms of money, but I don’t believe that UNC is talking exclusively about financial ROI. Like most business schools, it places enormous emphasis on developing leaders. It is proud of its 4-point process and 360 degree feedback. It is a general management program that makes extensive use of the case method and small teams for learning. Without ignoring the greenbacks, also talk about ROI in terms of personal development.
If your GMAT quantitative score is low, or if you have not had coursework in calculus, microeconomics, statistics and financial accounting, please tell us how you plan to prepare yourself for the quantitative MBA curriculum. (300 words maximum)
This is pretty straightforward. Just answer it. You may also want to highlight professional preparation that you have already had in quantitative areas.
Is there anything else you think the Admissions Committee should know about you in order to evaluate your candidacy?
(300 words maximum)
My favorite: The optional question. A gift allowing you to give the adcom one more reason to admit you.
If you would like help with UNC’s Kenan-Flagler essays, please consider Accepted.com’s MBA admissions consulting and editing services.