August 10, 2019

UCLA Anderson School of Management MBA Essay B

UCLA Anderson

Anderson MBA Essay 2

b) At Anderson, we believe our students are engaged, courageous, humble, and open. Describe a time when you demonstrated one of these traits in your personal life. (250 words maximum)

This is a fun question. There are enough traits here that you could fit pretty much any story here, but here are some things to consider:

  1. Pick a story where you demonstrated the trait by TAKING ACTION. Consider two stories about openness. In one, a teammate from a different culture joins your team and is discriminated against by others, but you two get along well. In another, a teammate from different culture joins your team and is discriminated against—and instead of standing idly by, you take decisive action to get others to welcome the new teammate and discourage the people discriminating against him. The second, more ACTIVE story is better because you’re the one driving the plot.
  2. Pick a time when sticking to your chosen trait was HARD. For example, is it courageous to speak in front of 100 people? Well, if it’s a wedding, and the audience is mostly your family, and you speak to much larger groups every day at work—no, it isn’t courageous. But if you have a speech impediment, and never speak to large groups, and have been afraid of it your whole life— NOW it’s courageous! In fact, the harder it is, the more courageous you are. The adcom wants to see your devotion to these traits TESTED.
  3. “In your personal life.” They’re not, repeat NOT, looking for an awesome business story here. If you answer this question by talking about a project that made your company $20 million dollars because of your courageous risk-taking, you’re not really addressing this prompt. In fact, you’re actively proving that you lack the HUMILITY to write for 250 words on a topic other than your business chops.
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