The Consortium’s mission is to increase representation of African Americans, Hispanic American, and Native Americans in top MBA programs and throughout the US workforce. For more than 50 years, The Consortium has provided a streamlined application process to now 21 top MBA programs. It is exciting to see Columbia as the newest Consortium member for this upcoming application season. It’s important to know that through The Consortium application, the schools admit you to their programs, and The Consortium admits you as a Consortium member. As a member, you have access to the organization’s Orientation Program and Career Forum before you even start your MBA, and you will be part of an amazing network throughout your MBA and beyond. As a member, you also have the opportunity to earn one of the 441 full scholarship fellowships offered through The Consortium. To apply, you will write a core goals essay, school-specific essays, and membership application essays, as well as an optional essay if you choose. Schools will review your core goals, core optional essay, and school-specific essays. The Consortium will also review the essays, particularly the membership application essays to assess your fit with its overall mission. If you support The Consortium’s mission, you should consider applying, and read Top Six Reasons Why You Should Apply Through The Consortium. And if you have decided to apply, here is what you should consider when approaching the essays.
Core Essay 1:
Please describe your short- and long-term goals post-MBA. How has your professional experience shaped these goals and influenced your decision to pursue an MBA degree? (2,000 characters)
Think of this as a pretty typical goals essay. Consider starting with a story that answers the second part of the question, relating a professional experience that helped inform your goals. Then explain what you want to do based on this professional experience. If your experience informs your short-term goal, then start there, and spell out how it will lead to your long-term goal. Or if your story informs your longer-term aspiration, explain what first step you need in your career post-MBA to achieve that aspiration. End with what you need from an MBA to be successful. This helps to show you’ve done the research and introspection on the MBA’s role in helping you achieve your goals.
Core Essay 2: (Optional Essay):
Is there any other information you would like to share with us that is not presented elsewhere in your application? (1,000 characters)
This question needs to be addressed only if there are gaps in your employment or some specific situation about which providing some background or context would be helpful. Some other examples would be if your recommender is not your direct supervisor or if your transcript includes some obvious holes or bad grades. No matter what the issue is, there is no need to make this essay any longer than it needs to be to explain your answer.
If you have any special extracurricular causes or work that you believe helps to further explain who you are, and that might not be evident from the other parts of your application, this could be a good place to help the committee learn about this aspect of you.
Membership Application Essays: Our mission, through the strength of our growing alliance and extended network, is to enhance diversity and inclusion in global business education and leadership by striving to reduce the significant underrepresentation of African Americans, Hispanic Americans and Native Americans in both our Member Schools’ enrollments and the ranks of global management across the following sectors: For- profit corporations, Nonprofit corporations, Government agencies and contractors, and Entrepreneurial ventures in both for-profit and nonprofit environments.
*Please address the three questions noted below. Please use specific examples pertaining to our target populations and clearly articulate your involvement, actions and results.
1. What will you do while enrolled in your MBA program to demonstrate your commitment to the mission? (2,000 characters)
2. What will you do post-MBA with respect to community service and leadership involvement to demonstrate your continued commitment to The Consortium’s missions of diversity and inclusion? (2,000 characters)
3. What have you done pre-MBA in your business, personal or academic life to demonstrate commitment to this mission? (1,000 characters)
All three of these essays ask for examples and specifics about how you have supported The Consortium’s mission throughout your past and how you will do so throughout your future MBA experience and post-MBA experience. Start by thinking about what you have done to support The Consortium to date. Maybe there is a story that shows your inspiration or can highlight an impact you are proud of having had in furthering The Consortium’s goals. You could organize your essay chronologically, by business/personal/academic area, or according to another theme that resonates with your story. Be specific about the organizations you’ve been involved with, the nature of your involvement, and the impact you’ve had in and/or on those organizations.
Next, think about what you will do during your MBA experience to help not just support, but also extend, The Consortium’s mission. What connections will you bring with you? Without being school specific, think about any experiences you’ve had that you might bring to a school and an affinity club or experiential opportunity where you could apply that experience to further the mission. Did you mentor underrepresented youth in your area? Were you a part of Teach for America and hope to volunteer in schools local to your program? Have you supported underrepresented entrepreneurs, and can you identify how business school will help you expand that reach?
Finally, think about the impact you want to have throughout your life—personally and professionally—supporting inclusion and diversity. What can you get involved in with your future company? If you mentored youth, can you extend this mentorship to high school or college grads? How might you help The Consortium find future members? And how would you spread The Consortium’s mission?
For each part of this essay question, be specific. Identify organizations and/or specific actions you have taken or will take. But don’t stop at actions, also convey the impact you have made or still plan to make.
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