Posted on June 6, 2022

Tuck MBA Essay Tips & Deadlines: 2022-23


Located in Hanover, New Hampshire, the Tuck School of Business is one of the most popular elite MBA programs. It is a difficult task to secure a seat in its small batch. The four criteria that the school uses to evaluate its students are: smart, accomplished, aware, and encouraging.

Application Deadlines

Round Application Due Decision Released
Round 1 September 26, 2022 December 08, 2022
Round 2 January 04, 2023 March 16, 2023
Round 3 March 27, 2023 May 04, 2023
Round 1 Consortium* October 15, 2022 December 08, 2022
Round 2 Consortium* January 5, 2023 March 16, 2023

Applications are due by 5:00 p.m. EST


The essay questions remain unchanged from last year. Like last year, Tuck requires applicants to write 3 essays.  The first essay asks applicants why they need an MBA from Tuck; the second essay wants them to comment on their individuality, while the third essay requires them to share an example of how encouraging, empathetic, or collaborative they are.

Let's take a closer look at the essays.

Essay #1: Tuck students can articulate how the distinctive Tuck MBA will advance their aspirations. Why are you pursuing an MBA and why Tuck? (300 words)

This essay asks applicants to explain their reasons for pursuing an MBA, from Tuck, in particular. Be aware of the four attributes listed in the admission criteria; a strong essay will demonstrate an awareness of why you think an MBA from Tuck MBA will help you achieve your goals.

Begin your essay with a brief career history focusing on your career progression and the skills and knowledge you acquired at each job position. Explain what skills you lack, what knowledge gaps you have, and how an MBA will fill those gaps and propel you to your career goals. Be specific about why you need a management education.

To answer the second part of the question, explain why an MBA from Tuck is your best bet at this time. Do your homework and demonstrate your thorough knowledge of the school's curriculum, faculty, special programs, and extracurricular activities. Explain how you will use them to achieve your professional and personal goals. Also, please mention how your interactions with Tuck's alumni and students have offered you valuable insights into the school's culture and offerings. Describe why you believe that an MBA from Tuck is the next logical step to fill the gaps in your career and bring you closer to fulfilling your goals. Specific comments about Tuck MBA will show the admission committee that you have researched the program and have a fair understanding of what you seek to achieve at Tuck.

Lastly, and most importantly, allot equal space to the two parts of the essay question: Why MBA- (approximately 150 words), and Why Tuck (approximately 150 words).

Co-Executive Director, Admissions and Financial Aid, Patricia Harrison, advises: "This essay maps to our "aware" criterion, so before you start reflecting and writing, review what being aware, ambitious, and purposeful means at Tuck. Once you've done so, recognize that there are two important considerations here. First, your aspirations matter. You've shared elsewhere in the application your short- and long-term goals, which we hope are both audacious in scope and grounded in reality. Second, the distinctions you see in the Tuck MBA matter. Take the necessary time and effort to identify what about an MBA, and especially the Tuck MBA, aligns with your goals.

For more details, click here.

Essay #2: Tuck students recognize how their individuality adds to the fabric of Tuck. Tell us who you are. (300 words)

Through this essay, the admission committee wants to know who you are as a person and how your individuality will enrich Tuck. To brainstorm ideas for this essay, you need to reflect on your character, values, and beliefs. Dig deep into your own experiences/ accomplishments to determine what matters to you, what drives you and motivates you, and how your personality will make you a good fit with Tuck's culture. You can also ask your family and friends to learn more about your attributes. It would help pick one or two examples from your past experiences to demonstrate your ability to contribute to the Tuck community. To understand the school's culture, you may reach out to the current students and alumni and learn about their experiences and insights.

Tuck seeks students who are Smart, accomplished, aware, and encouraging. Your transcript and test score highlight that you are 'smart' (intelligent), and your resume shows you are 'accomplished.' Essays #1 will showcase how 'aware' you are of Tuck's offerings and culture, and Essay #2 will reflect how aware you are of your identity and how you will add to its fabric-personally and professionally. Your response to this question should be personal and honest.

Co-Executive Director, Admissions and Financial Aid, Patricia Harrison, advises: "Like the first essay, this second essay also maps to our "aware" criterion. There's another important clue here: the interplay between individuality and community. Some of you have asked us whether your response should show that you "fit in" with Tuck or should instead highlight that you are different and distinct. They're not mutually exclusive. We want you to confidently bring your whole unique personal self, including your strengths and growth areas, to Tuck. ….This prompt is an invitation to articulate your individuality, and we're excited to read your response.

It focuses on the person who will show up here rather than the things you will do here. Given the framing statement preceding the question, we expect some of you may choose to explicitly name aspects of Tuck where you will add. That's okay, but the true heart of this essay is your individuality rather than a list of classes and clubs of interest."

For more details, click here.

Essay #3Tuck students are encouraging, collaborative, and empathetic, even when it is not convenient or easy. Describe a meaningful experience in which you exemplified one or more of these attributes. (300 words)

 This essay is a great place to show you are a team player. If you are empathetic and willing to help others, this essay provides you with an opportunity to showcase that quality. In addition, you may use this essay to demonstrate your 'fit' with the school's close-knit and collaborative culture, where everyone knows everyone.

Think about times when you had mentored someone or volunteered to help someone succeed even when it was not convenient for you. It is easy to be nice and helpful to a person who is your equal or superior and can return your favor. But it takes effort to invest your time in the success of a person who is not in a position to help you in any way. Choose the experience that left an impact on that person and, in turn, made you a better team player. The person you helped maybe your junior, a team member, a new hire, or someone in need. You may also choose an example that reflects your collaborative attitude, empathetic nature, or both. But please make sure to choose one story – an experience meaningful to you and to the person or group you helped or collaborated with. You have the option to select a personal or professional story.

As always, we recommend using the STAR method. Answering the following questions will help you create an effective response:

What was the situation (S)?

What challenges did you face (T)?

How did you deal with them (A)?

What was the result (R)? How was the experience meaningful to you? Did you learn any lessons during that experience? While recounting your experience, sharing the thought process that motivated your actions is the key.

Co-Executive Director, Admissions and Financial Aid, Patricia Harrison, advises: "This essay maps directly to our "encouraging" criterion, so we suggest that you review what it means at Tuck to be encouraging, collaborative, and empathetic. 

You have likely noticed that this is a new essay prompt. We broadened the question to give you greater flexibility in how you demonstrate evidence of this criterion. Some of you may choose to highlight how you invested in someone else and helped them succeed. Others might choose to focus on empathy and your engagement with the diverse experiences or perspectives of someone else. While some others might share an example of when you had to challenge others thoughtfully. Whatever approach you choose, we are excited to learn about how you engage with and support others.

Amy Mitson, Co-Executive Director, Admissions Recruitment and Financial Aid, explains, "At Tuck, being encouraging, collaborative, and empathetic means you invest both in your own success and also in the success of others. Being truly encouraging, collaborative, and empathetic requires real commitment, emotional intelligence, and a sustained willingness to make ongoing investments into meaningful trust-based relationships.

For more advice from Tuck, click here.

To meet the stringent 300 words limit of these essays, make every word count.

Optional Essay: Please provide any additional insight or information that you have not addressed elsewhere (e.g., atypical choice of evaluators, factors affecting academic performance, unexplained job gaps, or changes). Complete this question only if you feel your candidacy is not fully represented by this application. (300 words)

An optional essay is an opportunity for you to give relevant information to the Ad Com that you could not provide in other parts of your application, essays, and resume. For example, if you have a lower-than-average GMAT score, any grades below a 'C' on your transcript, academic probation, or a significant employment gap, you can explain this in this essay. To provide a context for a weakness in your profile, make sure your reason is genuine to convince the Ad Com that your low grades or employment gap occurred due to unforeseen circumstances beyond your control. Your response should be positive, straightforward, and fact-focused and should not sound like you are making excuses for a weakness in your profile. Also, if you cannot get your reference letter from your current supervisor, please explain that in the optional statement. As directed in the prompt, do not feel obliged to write this essay if you don't have any areas of concern.

Reapplicant Essay: How have you strengthened your candidacy since you last applied? Please reflect on how you have grown personally and professionally. (300 words)

This is a straightforward reapplicant essay. If you are a reapplicant, you need to illustrate that you have grown and evolved since the last time you applied. Through this question, the Ad Com would also like to know that your need for the Tuck MBA is as strong as it was last time. Hence you should demonstrate your continued interest in Tuck by explaining how you have enhanced your application since you applied last time.

The school asks reapplicants to comment on ways they have grown personally and professionally. For example, if you have improved your GMAT, received promotions, or gained more clarity on your goals, share this detail in the reapplicant essay. Additionally, if you have taken new quantitative classes or certifications, or any additional steps to learn more about the school and your 'fit' with the school's culture, this is the place to share that information. You may mention any meetings you have had with alumni/ professors/ ad com or any information session you have attended that gave you more clarity about the program's offerings. Your conscious efforts to strengthen your profile and work on your weak areas will prove how determined you are about your Tuck MBA.

Lastly, and most importantly, you should use the feedback you received from the school on your previous application and focus specifically on those areas, e.g., GMAT retake, clarity of goals, and improved essays with clarity of message.

Free Resources

10 Key Essay Tips with Examples

Essay Analysis of Other Top Programs-2022-23

MER Students Share their Success Stories

Case Studies

15th AIGAC Conference -2022- The Changing Trends in Management Education– Key Takeaways

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