MBA Admissions Process: What Happens After You Click 'Submit'?

You’ve submitted your MBA application. So what happens next? We lift the curtain on the MBA admissions process and reveal what goes on behind the scenes at business school after you click submit

You’ve taken the GMAT, honed your resume, written thoughtful essays, and secured your recommendation letters. But once you’ve submitted your application, what’s the next step in the MBA admissions process?

Your application will soon be reviewed by an MBA admissions committee, or adcom, which typically comprises MBA admissions recruiters and directors.

BusinessBecause caught up with Petia Whitmore, former dean of graduate admissions at Babson College Olin Graduate School of Business and founder of My MBA Path, to lift the curtain on what goes on in an MBA adcom and how admissions decisions are made.

Who sees your MBA application first?

The first look at your file is usually done by an operations team. 

They process MBA applications and ensure all the required parts have been received. After the application has been processed, you’ll be able to see a checklist with the status of your application—complete if all materials, including the letters of recommendation, have been submitted, and incomplete if anything is missing. 

Next, the first round of review will determine who gets invited to an interview. This is often done on a rolling basis. At both stages of review, the MBA admissions committee will look for strong evidence of academic ability, outstanding work experience and career trajectory, and examples of leadership, accomplishment, challenge, and growth. 

The adcom is also looking at the risk side—are your career goals realistic, do you have the right reasons to pursue an MBA, and are you a good fit for the type of culture and community the program has?

What does it mean if you’re invited to an MBA interview?

Being invited to the interview is truly great news for any candidate. It means you are...

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