Admissions, Application Tips, Full-Time MBA

The Truth About the Round 3 Application Deadline

By Maggie Dodson-
the-truth-about-round-3

Planning to apply to Darden’s full-time MBA program? We have just one more application deadline for our 2020 cycle — 6 April for our initial Round 3 deadline and 15 July for the rolling admissions deadline. Today on the blog, we are taking on myths about Round 3 that often result in questions from applicants, such as:

  • “Is Round 3 too late?”
  • “Should I even bother applying?”
  • “Should I just wait until next year?”

The easy answers are that it is not too late and there are a number of good reasons to apply in Round 3. We know every applicant’s timing is unique, and some candidates are simply unable to apply earlier. Every year, we extend offers to Round 3 applicants, and this year will be no exception.

Myth No. 1: The Class of 2022 is already full by Round 3. 

It’s largely a function of timing. At this point in the cycle, our class has begun to take shape. We have extended a number of offers and many of those offers have been accepted. As a result, by the time Round 3 comes around, we have a better feel for what our matriculated class might look like and, as a result, there are fewer seats available.

Every year is different and each cycle has its own rhythm. In some years, Round 3 is smaller. In other years, it’s a little larger. We always meet great candidates in this final round. This year will be no exception.

Myth No. 2: There’s no scholarship money left.

All admitted students are considered for a merit scholarship award, even in Round 3. We are fortunate to have a generous scholarship program, and this allows us to make awards across all of the application rounds. That said, we do have a finite amount of money to award. We have more money to award earlier in the cycle, and less money to award later in the cycle.

Myth No. 3: There is no point applying in Round 3 — it’s better to just wait until the next application cycle.

If you’re on the fence about Round 3 and thinking about potentially waiting until the 2021 cycle to apply, consider this: If you have the time and resources, there is almost no reason not to apply.

If you are admitted, you get to start your MBA program a full year earlier than if you waited to apply. If you are not admitted, you will have a sense of how to strengthen your application for the upcoming cycle, and you will have several months before our Early Action round to do so.

Myth No. 4: There are not as many opportunities to experience Darden. 

There is always time to make a personal connection. Our Admissions Committee likes getting to know applicants, and if you are applying in Round 3, we strongly encourage you to reach out. Schedule a conversation. And as you work on your application, reference our library of application resources.

As you assemble your application materials, consider using the Additional Comments section of your application to provide some additional context around your application timing. This is really useful information for the Admissions Committee and can help provide context for your story and timeline.

Myth No. 5: If I apply to Round 3 and don’t get in, it will negatively impact me if I reapply in a new cycle.

Not true! There is no harm in reapplying. We value reapplicants and are deeply appreciative of candidates who remain interested in Darden across admissions cycles. Of course, we’ll want to see how you have sharpened your application since you last applied, but you will be able to make those enhancements from a place of information.

Ready to get started? Here’s our application.

Check out faculty thought leadership published on Ideas to ActionAnd stay connected with us via social media: FacebookInstagramLinkedInTwitterWeChat