Located in Los Angeles, the UCLA Anderson School of Management stands out for its flexible curriculum and wide array of specializations. "UCLA Anderson prepares the brightest aspiring MBAs to become leaders in the business world," and the recruiters at Anderson come from the country's top companies. With more and more students worldwide wanting to pursue careers in management and take advantage of the school's location in Silicon Beach, getting admitted to Anderson is more challenging than ever. Anderson looks beyond the numbers. Famous for its 3 pillars (share success, think fearlessly, and drive change), Anderson seeks applicants to deliver value to the community and the classroom.
|Round||Application Due||Decision Date|
|Round 1||October 5, 2022||December 14, 2022|
|Round 2||January 04, 2023||March 22, 2023|
|Round 3||April 12, 2023||May 17, 2023|
Like last year, Anderson asks its first-time applicants one essay question for the 2022-2023 application cycle. The essay question has been changed this year. It is optional for reapplicants. Applicants can also submit an optional essay.
From Anderson Website: We look forward to learning about your perspectives and plans via your essay responses. Essays complement the answers you provide throughout the application to show us your whole profile. The best applications are introspective, genuine, and succinct in directly answering our questions and showing clear plans for the future.
Here is MER's analysis of Anderson's essay:
A) Essay: Tell us about a recent personal or professional achievement and how it connects to your MBA goals. (250 words maximum)
Strong essays describe the impact of your achievement and clarify its connection to your future MBA plans in the short- and long-term. We look forward to learning about the specific ways your achievement helped set you up for future success.
This straightforward question requires applicants to share a recent accomplishment that propelled them to their MBA goals. Please note the word “recent” achievement and select a story from the past year. Anderson allows you to choose a personal or professional story. Explain your impact and how it gave you confidence and sparked your interest in pursuing an MBA, particularly from UCLA Anderson.
Establishing a connection between your accomplishment and your MBA plans is crucial. Maybe your recent accomplishment has equipped you with a relevant skill or refined your understanding of an industry that propelled you to your MBA goals. Again, you should connect the dots between what you have accomplished and what you want to achieve, both immediately and in the long run. Also, make sure that your narrative showcases one or more of the core qualities of UCLA Anderson (share success, think fearlessly, and drive change).
As always, we encourage you to follow the STAR method to describe your accomplishment.
How to Structure your essay?
- The situation/ the challenge: What was the context? Who were the players involved? What did you need to accomplish in your leadership role? What were the challenges?
- The action: What initiatives/actions did you take? How did you deal with the challenges? How did you process your thoughts to make your decisions?
- The outcome/result: What were the results of your efforts? What was the resolution of the story?
- The significance: What did you learn through that achievement? How did it help you determine your MBA plans, specifically Anderson MBA?
Due to the super limited real estate, tell your accomplishment story in approximately 180-200 words and use the remaining space to outline your MBA plan.
Make every word count to meet the strict word limit of 250 words. Read our blog on 11 helpful strategies to meet the word limit.
11 helpful strategies to meet the word limit
B) Optional Essay:
Are there any extenuating circumstances in your profile about which the Admissions Committee should be aware? (250 words maximum)
No preference is given in the evaluation process to those who choose to respond to this optional essay, so please use your best judgment.
As directed in the essay prompt, you should use the optional essay to address a weakness in your profile. 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/ education gap, you can explain that in this essay. Also, if you cannot get your recommendation letter from your current supervisor, you should explain that in the optional essay.
Your response should be positive, straightforward, brief, and fact-focused and not sound like you are making excuses for a weakness in your profile. 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. First, explain the facts, then show how you have addressed the issue, and finally, spell out why this will not impact your ability to handle the program's academic rigor.
Your weakness may also bring out a positive aspect of your personality. For example, when discussing your employment gap, you may explain that you did something productive during that period, such as traveling, volunteering, or handling a family medical emergency.
Please note that the admission committee asks you to submit this essay only if you need to.
Reapplicants are those who applied to the MBA program within the last two application years, so those who applied three or more years ago are considered new applicants.
Reapplicants may answer one or both of the essay questions above as options, and they must provide additional updates within text boxes given in the application for any new test scores, career developments, or other changes since their last application.
Through this reapplicant essay, the Ad Com would like to know that your need for the UCLA Anderson MBA is as strong as it was last time. Hence you should demonstrate your continued interest in UCLA by explaining how you have enhanced your application since last time. You may answer this by focusing on the areas you have improved upon since you applied last. Whether you have taken extra classes, boosted your GMAT score, received a promotion, led a new and exciting project, increased your community involvement, or taken on a personal challenge, this is your opportunity to showcase that. The key here is to demonstrate that you are now a stronger candidate since your last application. Your conscious efforts to strengthen your profile and work on your weak areas will prove how determined you are about your Anderson MBA.
The school also asks reapplicants to comment on how they have refined their career goals and conducted additional research into the UCLA MBA program over the past year. You may mention any meetings with alumni/ professors/ad com or any information session you have attended. You can update on the enhancements in your resume and additional steps you have taken to learn more about the school and your 'fit' with the school's culture.
Reapplicants should submit only one new recommendation, which can be from the same recommender as the previous application.
Lastly, and most importantly, you should use the feedback from the school on your previous application and focus specifically on those areas, e.g., clarity of goals and improved essays with clarity of message.
Interviews of a few successful MER Students who got into Anderson:
1. Eduardo- UCLA, Yale, and Haas Kellogg admit
2. Dennis- UCLA and Haas admit
3. Saurav- UCLA and Kellogg admit
Overarching Essay Tips
MER Students Share their success Stories
Essay Analysis of Other Top Programs-2022-23
15th AIGAC Conference -2022- The Changing Trends in Management Education– Key Takeaways
Since 2011, MER (myEssayReview) has helped many applicants get accepted into the top 20 MBA programs, including UCLA Anderson. (Poonam is one of the top 5 most reviewed consultants on the GMAT Club.)
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