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Yale SOM Class of 2021 Essay Analysis

June 13, 2018

Yale SOM has released its essay question for the 2018-19 application cycle, keeping the same prompt as the previous year.

2018/19 essay question

Essay 1: Describe the biggest commitment you have ever made. (500 words)

2018/19 essay question analysis

Essay 1

This is a great meta-question, in that part of what Yale is seeking to learn from you is what you view as a big commitment to begin with. One trap we noticed last year was how many people were biased into talking about their biggest achievement, or some measure of their success. Instead, a great example includes a promise you have made (either to yourself, or others), and sacrifices you have made to keep that promise. How you describe your sacrifices and what you learned from them are a key element of this essay, as Yale uses these descriptions to measure how likely it is you will keep future commitments to yourself, your classmates, and the larger Yale community.

A final major point is that the commitment you made doesn’t have to be professional. Some of the more effective essays from last year included talking about improving health (mental and/or physical) and building relationships. As you consider topics, focus on the depth of the commitment you have had to make (the more specific the circumstance, the better), rather than the size of the achievement arising from your commitment. That will be critical to differentiating your story from other applicants.  

2018/19 deadlines

Round 1: Application deadline: September 12, 2018, Decision date: December 5, 2018

Round 2: Application deadline: January 7, 2019, Decision date: April 2, 2019

Round 3: Application deadline: April 16, 2019at TIME, Decision date: May 21, 2019

Other application details

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The online application is expected to be released later this summer.


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