"Why MBA?" is often the first question asked and without a doubt the most important essay you will write. It includes essential information about whether you're qualified, whether you're prepared, and where you're headed. The other essays fill in details about these fundamental points, but a strong answer about, for example, how you overcame a failure will not revive a candidacy that failed based on a lack of career focus.
Every answer should contain the following elements, unless the application has separate questions addressing them individually:
- Your long- and short-term goals.
- Your relevant past experience.
- An assessment of your strengths and the gaps in your experience/education.
- How an MBA program will bridge your past and future and fill in those gaps.
- Why this particular MBA program is a good match for your needs.
There are no groundbreaking reasons for pursuing an MBA. This is not a place to aim for bold originality. Rather, you should focus on articulating detailed reasons that are specific to your situation. Moreover, there is plenty of room to distinguish yourself when discussing past experience and future goals; the reasons themselves, however, come from a more limited set. That said, you should not try to drop buzzwords for their own sake. Make sure you tie your specific objectives to other aspects of your application.
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