The Chicago Booth Scholars Program Opens an Early Door to the Full-Time MBA Program

Deferred admissions MBA programs have grown increasingly popular in the last several years, and schools are responding to the interest. In fact, just within the last 12 months, such schools as the MIT Sloan School of Management and Columbia Business School have launched programs allowing admitted applicants to delay their enrollment in order to gain work experience first. Applying to a deferred admissions program is often viewed as a “safe” and risk-free option for undergraduates who feel certain that an MBA is the right path for them.

The University of Chicago Booth School of Business launched the Booth Scholars program in 2002 and initially only offered admission to University of Chicago undergraduate students. In October 2018, however, the school announced that the Booth Scholars program is now available to applicants from all undergraduate universities, as long as the applicants are in their last year of studies. In addition, although interested parties must apply for entry to the full-time MBA program, admitted Booth Scholars students now have the option of working for more than the previously allotted time period and can eventually enroll in the Booth Evening or Weekend MBA programs if they so choose.

Each admitted Booth Scholars class is kept relatively small—the most recent admitted class, for example, features 57 individuals—and each student is expected to work for at least two, but up to four or more, years following admission. Admitted Booth Scholars tend to come from a plethora of majors and backgrounds, but the school notes on its site that all eligible candidates have some things in common: “[they are] intellectually curious with personal maturity, competitive scores, and demonstrated leadership throughout college, [in addition to displaying] a track record of quality internships, part-time jobs, and/or an entrepreneurial spirit.” The application fee for the MBA program is waived for Booth Scholars applicants.

Find out more about the Booth Scholars program and other deferred admissions MBA programs, including those offered by such schools as the Yale School of Management, the Stanford Graduate School of Business, and the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, in our free HBS 2+2 and Deferred Admissions Primer.

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