UCLA is one of the few schools to ask you to directly discuss how things are different in your world, after all that we’ve gone through since 2020.
2022-2023 UCLA Full-Time MBA Essay Questions – Class of 2025
UCLA Round 2 is 3 weeks, 5 days ago (January 4).
- How have recent events influenced the impact you would like to make in your community, career, or both? (250 words maximum)
We welcome reflection on any events that influenced you in your personal or professional lives, or in society in general, and look forward to learning about specific ways you want to leave your mark. [emphasis in original]
This question made sense in 2020. In 2021? It could be easier in some ways to answer this now, since more time has passed for you to reflect on the events and their impact on your life — and probably more challenging to answer this in others, mostly because so many applicants fall into the “gosh, I need to sound impressive” trap. We tend to see a lot of “change the world” themes that people often write to schools like Stanford. Last year in Round 1, which happened in the aftermath of the George Floyd murder and a summer of protests in the U.S., a lot of applicants wrote about racism. Will applicants this year do the same, or has racism faded to the background of our collective consciousness now and applicants won’t think it’s the most impressive thing to focus on?
Basically what this needs is something PERSONAL and also SPECIFIC. Name an event! They are asking for something concrete there. Use one sentence for that, then talk about you. The bulk of your 250 words should be sentences focusing on you you you. Whatever the event is that you name, it has to be meaningful to you. If you were to say ‘coronavirus’ that’s fine but that’s a very big topic. What exactly about coronavirus, and much more importantly, how did it change you and what you stand for or what you want to go do with your life? How can you tie that in to who you are right now?
Here’s a test: If there was a collection of 12 essays from different Class of 2024 applicants sitting on the kitchen table with no names on them, could your mother pick out the one that you wrote?
At only 250 words, this is barely an “essay” so don’t try to do too much with it! We invite you to pick up our Anderson Application Guide – it’s still the last-season version, however this question is near-identical to what they asked then, so you’ll get a still-relevant and much more in-depth discussion on the opportunity that this question provides to you.
If you’re a reapplicant, you’re invited to still write on this question — and we suggest that you do! You’ll also need to complete the reapplicant essay which is essentially a pitch to show how you’ve made the most of the opportunity of time in between your original app and today.
They also have a standard optional essay, as most schools do, which should only be submitted if you have something significant to explain.
Our Career Goals App Accelerator is likely to be valuable as you start to prepare your content. You can also refer to past essays and other discussion towards the bottom of this page and of course our SnarkStrategies Guide for UCLA goes into great depth.
Anderson is quite reapplicant-friendly — and sheesh, they actually give you more words to use if you’re a reapplicant than they do for their “fresh” candidates! Hmmmmm.
Reapplicant Essay Question: Please describe your career progress since you last applied and ways in which you have enhanced your candidacy. Include information on short-term and long-term career goals, as well as your continued interest in UCLA Anderson.
They consider reapplicants to be anyone who applied in the past two cycles. If you applied longer-ago than that, you’ll do a whole new app — but remember that all the schools are keeping old apps around, and it’s possible they’ll look you up and see what you submitted before. There’s an art and a science to nailing down a reapplicant strategy — our Reapplicant Roadmap might be worth exploring.
Pro Tip: If you’re reapplying and your goals have changed, explain them here! Or if they have not, restate them as part of your intro, and show how you’ve done more research or have somehow confirmed or validated that these goals are right for you, and demonstrate what efforts you’ve made to progress towards them in the time from your last application. Our Reapplicant Guide walks through other strategies.
This video they released in a prior session gives a sense for what Anderson means by their culture and how they value those who “share success, think fearlessly and drive change”:
The Anderson essay guide covers the 2020 essay — with pages and pages of ideas for you on brainstorming and planning.
2022 UCLA MBA Application Deadlines
Rd 1: October 5, 2022– one of the later due dates, which means you’ll get to take your breath after a crazy run in September with other schools’ deadlines hitting first. This is good as it lets you stagger your workload, but the risk is that you burn out, if you’re trying to do too many applications for Round 1. Interview invitations often begin coming out from Anderson admissions quite quickly after the deadline, and they continue throughout the whole cycle till December. There’s nothing to be interpreted from whether you receive an interview invite earlier or later in the sequence.
- Rd 2: January 4, 2023 – by contrast, this is one of the EARLIEST Round 2 deadlines of any school, and that pretty much totally sucks since it comes straightaway after the holiday. UCLA had been kinder with how it set its Round 2 deadlines in the past. #disappointing
Round 3 is generally discouraged because it’s just so tough to find a spot when the schools have mostly filled the seats in the class. However, given the atypical season we’re in, this school might be one to try for at the very end of the cycle. The essay is not easy here though!! You’ll need to put in some real work in getting your message across. But, it also could end being worth it, if you make it into Anderson as a result!!
UCLA MBA Recommendations1 UCLA Anderson uses Anderson used standardized recommendation requirements; their recommender requirements are the same as schools like Yale, Stanford, Tuck and Ross.
- Two recommendations, as is common for most schools. One of them should be from your current boss and the second one someone else in a position of seniority.
- Three standardized questions for them to answer and one optional (See their questions here )
Lots of resources for constructing your recommenders strategy available here on the blahg; if you want more help on who to choose, our Letters of Recommendation App Accelerator walks through even more specifics and the variables you can optimize with your exact situation, and lets you submit your recommenders’ strategy for feedback from EssaySnark.
UCLA Anderson General Info
from the school
- UCLA requirements page
- Anderson Admissions Blog
- Specifics on UCLA’s TOEFL requirement are on the UCLA Graduate Requirements page which says that the TOEFL is required for international applicants educated abroad even if your college education was conducted in English (this is the same as how UC Berkeley does it)
The UCLA Anderson application guide explains what’s most important in preparing your pitch.
- The UCLA essay question on “recent events” (December 2021)
- It is ALL more competitive now – discussing the increase in average GMAT score (and popularity) at UCLA (September 2014 — though things have softened again lately!)
- essay critique! UCLA Career Goals from a social entrepreneur (December 2013)
- Those media-crazed Californians (February 2013)
- The best waitlist advice ever (February 2012)
We don’t have many Anderson essays reviewed on the blahg, however they look for the same strong career goals as Columbia, Ross, and other schools do, so try these out for some guidance:
- Haas EWMBA main essay – personal background and interests – and that “passion” thing (2010)
- essay critique: Michigan Ross career goals (2011)
- essay critique: another Columbia essay 1: “immediate and long-term post-MBA goals” (2012)
The UCLA MBA essay guide covers the 2020 application to help you make a strong impression on your admissions reader.