Transformation. The Texas McCombs MBA is all about personal and professional transformation. The program offers countless opportunities for you to learn and grow. So before you start writing your application essays for the school, reflect on the direction you want to take and how McCombs will help you get there. What impact do you see yourself making in the next 20 years? Dream as big as Texas!
We will learn a lot about your professional background through your resume and letter of recommendation, but we want to get to know you further. Please introduce yourself. Select only one communication method for your response.
1. Write an essay (250 words)
2. Share a video introduction (one minute in length)
Your first step before working on this essay or drafting a script for your video should be to review what the admissions committee will learn about you through your resume, short answers on the application, and other essay (Essay 2). Next, decide whether you want to create a written submission or make a video. The essay allows just 250 words. A picture is worth a thousand words, so a video might be worth even more! But select the option with which you feel more comfortable and able to tell your story well. Whichever you choose, use your response to communicate your individuality, interests, motivations, and passions.
If you opt for the video and have some editing skills, you can piece together several videos into one. Also, think beyond words to identify other ways you might convey your core message(s). What setting(s) might you select? What will you wear? Should you use some props? If you love fishing, perhaps introduce yourself with a rod and reel in hand, chilling at your favorite fishing spot. If you love to cook and entertain, perhaps give the admissions committee a glimpse into your kitchen and home. If your work isn’t in a typical office, maybe film your video at a loading dock, distribution warehouse, or manufacturing floor. Alternatively, maybe you volunteer at a food bank or clean trails at a local park. Show yourself in these places!
But don’t let the setting distract from your message. The goal of this response is to give admissions committee a sense of who you would be as a classmate and a member of the broader McCombs community. Be aware of your tone and the pace of your speech. A smile and an energetic voice can show the viewer that you are excited about Texas and will be a valuable contributor for your two years on campus and beyond.
Picture yourself at the completion of your MBA journey. Describe how you spent your time as a Texas McCombs MBA student to achieve your personal and professional goals. (500 words)
Tell a story! Where do you envision yourself after you have earned your Texas McCombs MBA? Perhaps you are at graduation, wearing a cap and gown along with your brown MBA hood. Alternatively, you might be celebrating in Rowling Hall with the group of friends you developed during your time on campus. Or maybe you are starting your dream job!
This essay is in some ways a kind of goals essay, but rather than looking forward as you would do for many other programs’ essays, for this response, you will assume that you have already done everything you are now envisioning. So make sure you have a clear post-MBA goal in mind. It should include your target industry, function, and even geography. The position should be aspirational yet achievable based on the resources you intend to tap at Texas McCombs. The admissions reader wants to understand that you intend to learn, lead, and change the world.
Do some reverse engineering to determine which areas you need to develop to be a strong candidate for the position you aspire to. Perhaps you need to build up broad business skills, go deep in analytics, and hone your leadership abilities so you can motivate and manage larger teams. Or maybe you want to make a career change from nonprofit to a marketing role and need to develop some functional skills to become a brand manager.
Next, explore the resources at Texas McCombs and pick out the ones that will allow you to address your areas for development so you are well prepared to create value in your future career. With just one semester of core curriculum, you have a lot of flexibility at Texas McCombs. What concentration might you pursue? Are there electives you are excited to take? What do you hope to learn? Connect with student ambassadors and ask targeted questions to get insight into professors and classes that align with your specific needs. If you could design an ideal MBA+ project, what company would you be working with, and what problem would you want to solve?
Beyond coursework, which clubs and initiatives might you get involved in? A lot of learning and relationship building happens through extracurricular activities. Maybe to prepare for a career in real estate, you represented McCombs in the National Real Estate Challenge during your first year and helped orchestrate the event in your second year. Use your story to show the admissions committee how you have used your time on the 40 Acres to develop yourself while simultaneously contributing to the development of your peers. You might consider mentioning a friendship you forged with someone on your Study Team that grew into something bigger—perhaps that person has become your business partner!
Don’t forget to address your personal development. Think about the classmates from around the world who you will be learning with and from. How have you grown from engaging with your diverse peers? Maybe you enjoyed exploring the music, art, and film scene in Austin. Or perhaps you learned to kayak as you explored the outdoors with classmates.
A great essay will show the admissions committee that you plan to be an engaged member of the vibrant and diverse McCombs community and that you will use your time on campus to prepare to make a positive impact in the years to come.
Optional Statement: Please provide any additional information you believe is important or address any areas of concern that you believe will be beneficial to MBA Admissions in considering your application. (e.g. gaps in work experience, choice of recommender, academic performance, or extenuating personal circumstances) (250 words)
This question only needs to be addressed if there is some specific situation where providing background or context would be helpful. If you have any special extracurricular causes or work that you believe would further illustrate who you are, this might be a good place to share this aspect of your profile with the admissions committee. Whatever your topic, there is no need to make this essay any longer than it needs to be to explain your answer. Just briefly provide the necessary explanation or information without a lot of extraneous commentary.