The 2013-2014 Wharton Application Essays

Posted By SWatts on Jan 3, 2014 |

From The Staff of MBA

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The 2013-2014 Wharton Application Essays

Wharton has released their admission essays and application deadlines for the 2013-2014 intake season. Application deadlines appear below.

Wharton Application Deadlines:

Round 1: October 1, 2013

Round 2: January 7, 2014

Round 3: March 27, 2014

All applicants and reapplicants to Wharton are required to write and submit the same two required essay questions. Reapplicants, however, must also submit one additional essay question, as outlined below. Lastly, all applicants may choose but are not required to complete a final optional essay question.

Just like other top business schools such as Harvard, MIT and Northwestern, Wharton has changed several key parts of their admission essays this year, cutting down the number of required essays from three required essays in the 2012-2013 application cycle to two for this year’s application season. Wharton chose this method in the belief that they can get to know candidates well through fewer and more in-depth essay questions. Requiring fewer essay questions is also seen as a way to respect time – the time spent by applicants in writing the essays, and the time spent by the admission board in reviewing applicant’s essays.

With respect to question 1 of the required essay set, there are two notable changes. First, the word limit has been raised from 400 to 500 words. This is in part to allow students to give greater depth to the question, and in part to allocate length due to the eliminated third essay question from the previous year. Second, the word “personally” was added to the question. This addition was a very intentional act by Wharton, aiming to get an understanding of the applicant that goes beyond just reiterating a resume or recommendation.

With respect to question 2 of the required essay set, choice was eliminated. In prior years, applicants had the option to choose two out of three options to respond to. This year, the question was condensed into one essay, citing the belief that more options caused more stress for applicants.

The Wharton 2013-2014 essay questions will appear on the application as they do below.

Required Essay Questions (for all applicants)

1. What do you aspire to achieve, personally and professionally, through the Wharton MBA? (500 words)

2. Academic engagement is an important element of the Wharton MBA experience. How do you see yourself contributing to our learning community? (500 words)

Additional Essay Question for Reapplicants

All reapplicants to Wharton are required to complete the Optional Essay. Please use this space to explain how you have reflected on the previous decision on your application and to discuss any updates to your candidacy (e.g., changes in your professional life, additional coursework, extracurricular/volunteer engagements). You may also use this section to address any extenuating circumstances. (250 words)

Optional Essay Question (for all applicants)

If you feel there are extenuating circumstances of which the Committee should be aware, please explain them here (e.g., unexplained gaps in work experience, choice of recommenders, or questionable academic performance, significant weaknesses in your application). (250 words)