How to Apply to The Wharton School’s Round 1 During COVID-19

It’s MBA software season, however this yr, the entire course of is a world away from the norm.

COVID-19 has modified the way in which we reside, work, and educate ourselves. It’d be straightforward to really feel a scarcity of motivation on this unprecedented state of affairs, however there is no such thing as a higher time to begin making ready for the following massive step in your profession than while you’re caught at house in lockdown.

Fortuna Admissions just lately held a reside technique session with senior admissions coaches from Harvard Enterprise Faculty, the Wharton Faculty and Stanford Graduate Faculty of Enterprise to talk about the ins and outs of making use of to these selective enterprise faculties throughout Round 1 of the applying course of.

And though it could be an incredible yr to apply to Wharton, Harvard or Stanford with out the GMAT (because it doubtless gained’t be on the playing cards ever once more), there’s a lot extra to the method.

Natasha De Masi, Wharton MBA & former Wharton Fellow affords her perception.

Mission assertion

‘Develop leaders who act with a deeper understanding of themselves, their organizations, and their communities, and contribute equally to the expansion of every.’ – That is the mission Wharton strives for.

Wharton is a deeply analytical, quant pushed faculty, however its assertion additionally talks about deeper understanding of your self.

It’s an invite for you to take a step again and take into consideration the alternatives you’ve made main up to making use of to Wharton.

Natasha mentioned: “I do not assume they’re disconnected. It does take evaluation of the alternatives you have made, the place you need to be, and the place you need these selections to take you.

“I believe it is crucial to the admissions committee at Wharton to see humility, to see introspection when it comes to functions.”

COVID-19 perspective

We’re dwelling in unprecedented occasions, however ought to we enable the present state of affairs to put the brakes on our future? 

The technique session talked about attitudes to COVID-19 and whether or not it’s best to nonetheless apply, however everybody has had a novel expertise through the pandemic. Would the admissions workplace in Philadelphia be in search of examples of management through the pandemic?

Wharton’s mission assertion talks about contributing positively to the expansion of others. There’s a sense of ‘we’, which pulls on humility, self-reflection, and the way your assist helps others – a type of management in itself.

Natasha mentioned: “That is the time to present these qualities. It may be executed on so many ranges. Plenty of giant companies have gone a way to cowl that.

“That is the time when candidates with the fitting technique have a possibility to actually stand out. Some folks have not essentially had the chance to present the form of management that HBS is perhaps in search of at work.

“However this can be a disaster state of affairs, excessive circumstances, and anyone can step up. This can be a degree enjoying subject in some ways.”

It’s all about that leap of religion whether or not to take up a spot for Fall 2020, because the enterprise local weather might be a really completely different place in just a few years.

Natasha mentioned: “I encourage candidates to take into consideration the long run, not the brief time period.

“It is human nature to strive to time these choices simply completely and say, ‘Nicely what if I graduated this time, and we’re in the course of the recession, will I give you the chance to monetize on my diploma?’

“An MBA is an costly time-consuming funding and it is one thing that stays with you for the remainder of your life.

“Sure, it is completely different, however you are still getting an MBA from very selective faculties. I personally would nonetheless spend money on the expertise.”

The significance of the GMAT and educational journey

Blair Mannix, the Director of Admissions at Wharton mentioned: ‘After I learn your software, I’m in search of causes to admit you, not to deny you.’

In case your information sufficiency rating isn’t the very best, there are different methods to compensate when you aren’t an excellent take a look at taker. There are different methods to present Wharton and different high faculties you might have the willpower to succeed.

Natasha mentioned: “In the event you discovered the braveness and drive to apply, which means there’s one thing about you that needs to be enticing to these faculties.

“I labored with a candidate who took a category at Berkeley and that basically helped him. That was one thing we used to proactively illustrate that he was conscious of that shortcoming and he was actively working to handle it, and to faculties, that goes a great distance.

“It’s a possibility to take that time and illustrate that you’ve got humility, and you are going to do every little thing in your energy to repair that and overcome that barrier.”


Colleges actually spend time on resumes to perceive the trail you’ve taken, demonstrating a way of self and willpower.

Natasha mentioned: “There’s an artwork and science to making a doc that’s one web page lengthy, that basically communicates what you have executed, why you have been profitable.

“It is at all times attention-grabbing to perceive the place the individual was for undergrad, or perhaps you might have a global background, after which the extracurriculars and the issues they select to do exterior of labor life are necessary as effectively. It isn’t nearly what you have achieved professionally, life is way broader than that.

“You’ve to work onerous on boiling it down to your accomplishments. What makes you stand out out of your friends. Enterprise faculties need to admit folks on the high of their cohorts. It does not matter which subject you are coming from, however you might have to reveal excellence.”

Displaying who you might be

The Wharton mission assertion talks about contributing to the group, and your resume permits you to reveal your sense of group involvement.

Extracurricular group engagement is one thing all three enterprise faculties need. That is an space that enables you to present your sense of dedicated group involvement.

Natasha mentioned: “Enterprise faculties know that if one thing is necessary to you, you’ll find time for it. Most packages might be in search of dedication over a time period that is significant.

“You do not have to be spending 20 hours every week on a trigger for it to be significant and to have an effect. It is the dedication, the size of time and the weighted determination to assist group.”

The essay

Wharton’s essay focuses on what you hope to get out of the Wharton MBA, it’s the a part of the applying to present Wharton the place you need to be sooner or later.

Natasha mentioned: “That may be difficult as a result of no person has a crystal ball, however we do have ambition, and we must always understand how an MBA matches into that ambition, and profession and life journey we’re making an attempt to craft for ourselves.”

It is best to have an excellent understanding of what you’ll take away from Wharton’s curriculum, that you could create one thing transferring forwards. This essay query brings out your uniqueness and distinctive ambition.


Wharton’s interview is much from a traditional model. Interviewees are examined in a gaggle setting with a enterprise case. It’s not crucial to clear up the enterprise case, however what’s Wharton in search of?

Wharton determined this format was higher to make conclusions about candidates as a result of group work is a large a part of enterprise faculty.

Natasha mentioned: “You’ve a studying crew that you just spend a lot of your time with. It is necessary to see how you’re employed with different folks, the way you interact in that dialogue.

“I believe that is why the group interview format is necessary. It is a bit of tough. It requires a special sort of preparation. Preparation is essential.”

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Have you considered making use of to The Wharton Faculty? Listed below are the stuff you want to know from a Wharton professional.

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