Watch Our Exclusive Webinar with Admissions Directors from CBS, Yale SOM, Michigan Ross, UVA Darden, and Chicago Booth!

Recently, mbaMission Founder/President Jeremy Shinewald hosted a webinar with admissions directors from Columbia Business School (CBS), Chicago Booth, Michigan Ross, UVA Darden, and the Yale School of Management (SOM) to discuss the rapidly changing dynamics of the MBA application landscape as we are (hopefully) nearing the tail end of the coronavirus pandemic.

Our thanks go out to these experienced officers, who shared their expectations for the upcoming 2022–2023 admissions season:

  • Dawna Clarke, Senior Assistant Dean of Admissions at the University of Virginia Darden School of Business
  • Bruce DelMonico, Assistant Dean for Admissions at the Yale School of Management
  • Diana Economy, Director of Full-Time MBA Admissions at the University of Michigan Ross School of Business
  • Michael Robinson, Senior Director of Admissions at Columbia Business School
  • Donna Swinford, Associate Dean for Student Recruitment and Admissions at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business

We encourage you to watch the full recording of the webinar below or on our YouTube channel to get the inside scoop on everything the admissions directors shared.

These are a few highlights from the session:

  • All admissions directors were very excited to have been able to host graduation ceremonies on campus for the first time in a few years! Some also hosted in-person ceremonies for the Classes of 2020 and 2021 this year.
  • Here is some of the most exciting news from each school: Yale SOM recently completed its review of the MBA curriculum. At Michigan Ross, students and faculty are excited to kick-start international experiences again after hosting them virtually since 2020. At CBS, two new buildings—the Henry R. Kravis Hall and the David Geffen Hall—opened their doors in January. The UVA Darden MBA application is live and available to applicants, and the school’s Powered by Purpose capital campaign, which will support scholarships in addition to other aspects, is nearing its $400M goal. And at Chicago Booth, the New Venture Challenge recently hosted its finals!
  • Diana Economy encouraged applicants to visit the Michigan Ross campus in person whenever possible, but she unequivocally stated that visiting the campus does not affect applicants’ chances of acceptance. Michael Robinson reminded applicants who plan to visit the CBS campus to still do their due diligence regarding the school—he noted that a lot of information about schools is available online.
  • In terms of the upcoming 2022–2023 application season, Bruce DelMonico revealed that Yale SOM has not decided whether it will host upcoming admissions interviews virtually or in person. Dawna Clarke is hoping that UVA Darden applicants will be able to choose from the two interview formats. Michael Robinson said there may be a change in the CBS essays to clarify the inclusion aspect in one of the prompts, but he could not confirm the changes yet.
  • According to Bruce DelMonico, the Yale SOM Round 2 is usually roughly half the size of Round 1 in terms of applicants. He noted that there is absolutely no advantage in applying in either round or in Round 3. Diana Economy asked Michigan Ross applicants to keep in mind that if they apply in Round 1, they may have to put down a rather sizable deposit if they are admitted—this means that applying to several schools in Round 1 might result in a tricky situation if an applicant gains admission to several schools. She also mentioned that fewer applicants are admitted in Round 3.
  • Donna Swinford mentioned that in the interview, the University of Chicago Booth School of Business has decided to focus on exploring the characteristics that the school looks for in an applicant. The application now focuses more on why the applicant wants an MBA and whether the timing is right for them, while the interview delves deeper into who the person is. “We like to admit people, not applications, and we like to know who they are,” Swinford said.
  • Our panelists were unsure about whether we have a recession ahead of us, but they all agreed that now is an excellent time to apply to business schools. Many of the admissions directors reported that their post-graduation numbers are back to those of pre-pandemic days, and Diana Economy noted that there is particularly high momentum for consulting at Michigan Ross currently. Dawna Clarke estimated that the next UVA Darden admissions cycle will be as competitive as the most recent one.

In the weeks since our broadcast, CBS, UVA Darden, and Yale SOM have released their application deadlines and essay questions for the 20222023 application season. We encourage you to check out our school-specific essay tips and examples and to bookmark our Application Deadlines page to stay up to date as more business schools begin releasing application information in the coming weeks. 

If you have any questions about your MBA candidacy for the current or next application season, be sure to sign up for a free 30-minute consultation to get personalized advice from one of mbaMission’s admissions experts!

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