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UCLA Anderson Class of 2020 Essay Analysis

July 18, 2017

2017-18 essay questions

Essay 1 (500 words): Describe your short-term and long-term career goals. How can the UCLA Anderson experience add value to your professional development?

Short answer (250 words): Describe how you would contribute to the UCLA Anderson community.

2017-18 essay question analysis

Essay 1

This is similar to what you will discuss in other school applications (if you’re applying to other schools), and thus should be fairly straightforward given answers to these questions should be locked in during early brainstorming.

One caution; there is sometimes a tendency to give equal time to both short and long-term goals. However, if your long-term goal is differentiated (commercializing products developed by NASA, build liberal-arts education in India are some of our favorites from the past), then focus more space on that. After all, the key to a successful essay is to differentiate yourself from other applicants. Yes, it’s great you want to do consulting post-business school, and you should definitely write about it. However, many others have that same goal, so write about what you want to get out of consulting, and HOW it will help you achieve your differentiated long-term goal. That will help you stand out from a crowded field.

Short answer prompt

There isn’t much space to narrate in this essay, so the key is to be specific and direct in the impact you will have at Anderson. One approach is to poll recent alumni or current students, asking them what is missing on campus today. Then write about how you will fill that gap, being as specific as possible. It is more memorable for the reader to imagine a single legacy you will leave the school, rather than several leadership roles that other applicants could commit to. Depth vs. breadth will be key to a successful essay here.

Optional essay

As with other schools, this should focus on addressing weaknesses you cannot address elsewhere in the application. Be direct in your explanation. You won’t have space to be defensive in what you’re trying to explain, which may actually help you avoid a common trap in questions similar to this.  

2017-18 deadlines

Round 1: Application deadline: October 6, 2017, Decision date: December 15, 2017

Round 2: Application deadline: January 5, 2018, Decision date: March 29, 2018

Round 3: Application deadline: April 12, 2018, Decision date: May 24, 2018

Other application details

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The online application is expected to be released on August 1, 2017.


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