In a recent blog post, the Stanford GSB’s Admissions Committee tried to dispel the myth that there is no point in applying in the school’s ultra-competitive final round. While the Admissions Committee conceded that the “final round typically is smaller than the first two,” they nonetheless emphasized, “We do admit outstanding individuals in all three rounds—this year is no exception.”
The encouragement itself is noteworthy, but the not-so-subtle secondary message is also important: candidates who are rejected in the final round are at no disadvantage at all and may even find themselves in an advantageous position to apply in the following year. As the blog entry states, “If you’re admitted, great. If not, then you’re in a better position for September 2010 having already begun the self-reflection process for your first-round application.” Clearly, the Stanford GSB’s Admissions Committee is sending the message that candidates should be bold and not fear that a “ding” will irreparably damage any future opportunities with the school.