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Our Wharton MBA Application Guide is chockfull of practical, actionable insights gained from yet another successful season of working with BSers who got in.
2022 Wharton MBA Essay Questions – Class of 2025
Wharton Round 2 is in 2 months, 3 weeks, 6 days, 18 hours (January 4).
The 2022 Wharton MBA essay questions are:
- How do you plan to use the Wharton MBA program to help you achieve your future professional goals? You might consider your past experience, short and long-term goals, and resources available at Wharton. (500 words maximum)
- Taking into consideration your background – personal, professional, and/or academic – how do you plan to make specific, meaningful contributions to the Wharton community? (400 words maximum)
These are classic Wharton questions — and we have actually presented a whole bunch of posts on questions just like these! The one that trips most BSers up is Wharton essay 2. It’s really easy to write a full 400-word essay for that prompt that literally never answers the question! However, the adcom is crystal clear on what they are looking for. It requires a tremendous amount of school research to really know what you can do there. Plus, you have to KNOW YOURSELF in order to present ideas for how you would contribute. Fluffy hand-wavy statements are not going to cut it! This needs to be an integrated whole. You’re essentially pitching the adcom on why you!
Essay 1 is no joke either. Here’s a 2021 post on “what will you gain professionally at Wharton.” We’ve also got this gem for you: a critique of Wharton essay 1 on “what will you gain” which is an actual applicant’s early draft submitted last year for public snarky discussion (we’re still accepting drafts for that freebie opportunity, if you’re feeling brave and want to see what we say about your work! yes, publicly!! you just need to be a blahg member and you can send it on in!).
Reapplicants must submit both of these essays — which can be challenging from a strategy perspective, since you answered very similar ones last year! — plus there’s an additional reapplicant essay. This is a fairly standard prompt requesting to be updated on changes in your profile, with the specific Wharton spin asking for “how you have reflected and grown” which can sometimes introduce challenges for candidates. It really does require introspection to do this one well!
They also have a 250-word Optional Essay which any applicant can use if there’s a particular case to explain or circumstances to shed light upon within the fact set of your application. Please only use the optional essay when it’s actually needed! And, it’s always important to be brief. Wharton’s optional should be a real essay, not bullet points (and actually, the bullet-point optional should be avoided wherever possible).
Jump down this page to a list of EssaySnark posts on Wharton essay questions. Includes real essays we’ve reviewed for actual real-life BSers!
Our advice in the SnarkStrategies Guide for Wharton walks you through a methodology to tackle all of it! We’ve long been coaching the BSers who come to us for help on Wharton that they need to be specific on what they say. Think of it like a proposal: You’re going to come to Wharton to do what?? Perhaps this post from the ‘snarchives (and a long-ago era in American politics and culture!!) may assist?
How do you answer them?
Both of these essays are challenging but they’re not gawdawful horrible in terms of what types of anguish you’ll go through in getting a good answer on the page. Wharton’s essays could be tackled as your first application — not 100% ideal because it is SO competitive and you’ll need your essays to be outstanding (which first-project essays are not always) but in terms of difficulty level, it might be feasible to use them as your training wheels for figuring out how to present yourself and construct solid answers to essay questions. (Pro Tip: Harvard is not in this same category! Don’t do HBS first.)
Along with our in-depth guide, we can also point you towards this post on “outside-in stories” that can be especially relevant as you sort through what to do with Wharton Essay 2.
EssaySnark’s Wharton Application Guide offers a discussion of the focus and emphasis in the admissions process at this school and how that might affect you as an applicant. It also discusses the Lauder MBA/MA program, and as always, we go into great detail on the Team-Based Interview experience — and everything else you need to know to construct the strongest set of essays possible.
What else can help you with prepare for a Wharton application?
Well, we have the Accomplishments & Achievements App Accelerator which is excellent in helping you to sort through your past experiences and coming up with the best ones that an adcom may respond to, with personalized feedback from EssaySnark on how you’ve focused in on the core statement. And we have the Essay Ideas App Accelerator which includes lots of instructions on how to structure your stories and the way to focus the essay framework to make sure you’re hitting on the right points in the right way. Or you can just go whole-hog and dive in with the Complete Essay Package, which includes both of those and lots more, to get you from start to finish on these Wharton essays in the most efficient way possible!
Be sure to also read the many posts on the EssaySnark blahg about “show don’t tell” and also check out this key post on the “how will you contribute” Wharton essay question which we refer our BSer-clients working on Wharton to all the time.
As we’ve been saying: The essay guide for Wharton will help you unpack these questions and present your best self! The strategies we have established for BSers going back through time are tried and true, and 100% relevant for today’s application. Every year we see lots of successes from the BSers we work with on Wharton!
There are also a whole slew of other programs including Lauder and lots of other joint degree opportunities at Wharton. One of the most popular remains the Wharton Health Care Management track which we discussed for a candidate way back long ago here in the ‘snarchives.
The SnarkStrategies Guide for Wharton offers a thorough discussion of the two essay questions, and also walks you through the qualities that Wharton has long sought in its applicants. We cover reapplicant concerns, the Team Based Discussion, the Lauder joint degree program, and the letters of recommendation that are unique to Wharton. This guide will be your best resource with insights on the Wharton MBA application!
If you want to see what they’ve asked in past years (primarily focusing on career goals/why Wharton type of prompts) you can see our historical questions section at the bottom of this page. This can sometimes give applicants some insights into what the school cares about most (which may shift from season to season but rarely changes completely).
Wharton MBA recommendationsWharton has totally unique recommender questions!
Two free-form questions:
Question 1: Please provide example(s) that illustrate why you believe this candidate will contribute meaningfully to the Wharton MBA community. (Word count: 300)
Question 2: Please provide example(s) that illustrate why you believe this candidate will find success throughout their career. (Word count: 300)
This is a situation where our Recommenders Instructions Sets can be valuable!
Wharton MBA 2022-’23 Dates and Deadlines
Wharton MBA Application Deadlines
The deadlines for applying to the Wharton Class of 2025 are fairly similar to those at Harvard and Stanford
Round 1: September 7, 2022This year, both Round 1 and Round 2 at Wharton are expected to be equally competitive. Round 1 is better for your emotional wellbeing (you really really don’t want this to extend all the way out till Spring 2023) so for that reason alone, we would suggest getting your app in early in the season if you can. Round 1 interview invites expected to come out from Wharton at the tail end of October.
- Round 2: January 4, 2023 Round 2 at Wharton may still viable for a competitive candidate, though traditionally they get a lot more apps then, so there’s more of a crowd to have to stand out against. Apply when your app is strongest; if that means pushing to January in order to improve your GMAT or GRE, or have a significant accomplishment from your job to include on the resume, that could be a worthwhile strategy. Round 2 interview invites will likely happen in the first half of February.
Interviews at Wharton
Wharton’s interview process is different from many other American bschools (though Michigan Ross also does things in a similar way). Wharton has what’s called the Team-Based Discussion which is basically a simulation of how you will experience academic life at this school. It’s designed to help the admissions team see candidates in action. You will also have a (short!) one-on-one interview, usually with a second-year student.
A loooooong time ago, Admissions Director Maryellen Lamb talked about the Team Based Discussion
Also a long time ago, a successful BSer shared his story with us about getting into Wharton which includes some comments on the Team Based Discussion
Participation in the Team-Based Discussion is by invitation only. Invites start going out about a month after the round deadline; in past years, they issued them on just one day a week, every week for four weeks (or so) – but now they have more often been doing a big-bang approach, where on one single day they announce the invites, and the early rejects for that round. We go into more detail on how this works in the essay guide.
EssaySnark Wharton MBA Essay Reviews and Advice!
- What will you gain professionally at Wharton? (August 2021)
- essay critique! Wharton essay 1 “What do you hope to gain professionally?” (August 2020)
- How do you figure out what major to choose on the MBA app? (with stuff on Wharton essay strategy) (September 2019)
- When an essay prompt does not ask for something but you include it anyway – Wharton essay 1 (September 2017)
- Wharton essay 2: What will you contribute? (September 2017 but still valid and oh so important)
- The lemming effect (September 2016)
- A warning about tone on contribution essays (a la Wharton) (August 2016)
- How to prepare for your Wharton Team Based Interview (November 2015)
- essay critique: Wharton “what do you hope to gain?” (September 2015)
- Wharton’s 2015 App Changes (June 2015)
- Applying to H/S/W? Why “Is my GMAT good enough?” is not the right question (November 2014)
- Wharton’s new app is beautiful and it sucks in multiple major ways. Plus typos. (August 2014)
- Stanford Essay 2 and Wharton Essay 1: Are they the same or not? (July 2014)
- A discussion of the changes to the Wharton 2014 essay questions (June 2014)
- ($) If scholarship money is important to you, don’t apply to Wharton. (May 2014)
- essay critique: Wharton’s “discuss a time when you were innovative” (2011)
- essay critique part II: “a time you were innovative” (2011)
- Wharton’s new (at the time) essay questions (2010)
- Wharton essay questions reviewed – 1 of 2 (2010)
- Wharton essay questions reviewed – 2 of 2 (2010)
- Wharton “design a course” question (2010)
Got those Wharton essays done? Get them reviewed!