MBA has been a calling for most students after their graduation. Applicants choose between schools in the home country and schools abroad. However, this choice could be much tougher this year amid the growing concerns about jobs and work visas in the post pandemic period.
In these different times, you need to know how to prepare for your admissions this application season. Is it possible to send stellar applications in Round 1 during the reduced work exposure in the lockdown? Yes, if you keep some key points in mind.
Here are some key points to keep in mind for applications in Round 1
- The MBA Admissions will be more competitive this year. Why? Most industries across the globe are bracing for a severe recession. Most people like you think of an MBA as a path that leads to a road with opportunities when the recession phases out. Historically, the number of applications have increased when the number of jobs available decreased. Most of the top schools expect approximately 25% increase in the applications. What does this mean for you? You need to start your applications right now. You will be at an advantage to deliver a story that is unique and showcases your growth in a simple and connecting manner.
- All the good B-schools aim for diverse classes and are committed to hire more and more international students. A tough decision for you as an applicant, however, is the uncertainty around the visa rules. Hence, if your top choice school is in a country where the visas might become more stringent, apply for a good school closer home as a backup.
- Adaptability will be the most important skill that schools would value in the application. So, you must show how you adapted to the challenges and uncertainties in these different times. How you overcome the challenges is more important than your accomplishments. These stories convey your character and leadership potential. For example, if you were laid off during this time, how did you utilize your skills where they were most required or help yourself upgrade.
- Your admissions will be dependent on your uniqueness more than ever. As the number of applicants are going to increase, the chances of candidates with similar accomplishments as yours also increases. Hence, it is more important to show what uniqueness will you add to the class or the school. Remember, they are looking for a more diverse class and not a high achievers class. Your motivation and drive to take a decision is more important to the schools than the final result of that decision. The unique personalized elements of your story will help the admissions committee connect with you better.
- Hoping for GMAT or GRE score waiver for the next application cycle? This hope is far from the truth. The test scores are here to stay and will remain an important data point in the final decision. So, continue your test prep.
- You are in a lockdown and are spending more time online. Use this time more judiciously to connect with alumni, students, and administrators at your target B-schools. This is even more important now that you can’t go for a physical tour of the school. These connections with the alumni and the students can provide you with good insights about the school and help you make a link with your story.
- If you have questions in your mind – whether to apply in R1 or let the uncertainties settle down, what kind of placements are possible – then there is someone waiting to answer your questions. You can connect with second year students, professors, or admissions directors. All schools have up their technology and communication amid the uncertainty looming around the globe.
At Wizius, we probe our clients on the following questions: What matters most to you? Why? What do you have to offer to the school? What do you have to offer your community or the communities across the globe? If you have not started answering these questions, start now. This is the time to self reflect and discover yourself.
So, start early and stay ahead with the thought knowing fully that your career and progress is not defined by your achievements but by the challenges you overcome.