If you applied to one of Darden’s MBA programs (Full-Time MBA, Executive MBA, etc.) in the 2020-21 admissions cycle and are planning to reapply, we are thrilled to highlight a few tips for you as you approach this year’s application process. We tremendously value candidates who remain interested in our program across admissions cycles, and many of our current students applied to Darden a couple times before gaining admission.
Executive Director of Admissions Dawna Clarke and Director of Admissions Katherine Alford hosted a webinar specifically for re-applicants on 3 August. View the recording here.
Reapplicant Request Form
If you submitted an application in our 2020-2021 admissions cycle, can easily copy your application to the current admissions cycle. To request this action, please submit the Reapplicant Request Form.
While the reapplicant request form will give you a running start on your new application, you will need to answer any new questions, and we also recommend reviewing your prior responses to ensure they are still accurate.
Although we generally encourage candidates to apply when they feel like they can put together a strong application, however, if you applied in one of our later rounds last year, we recommend targeting an earlier deadline this year.
By applying earlier, you will ensure you are submitting your materials at a time when we have more seats available. As we move from round to round, our class begins to shape and competition typically increases. In addition, for applicants for whom a scholarship decision will be an important part of their MBA decision, we generally have more scholarship money to award earlier in the cycle than later.
Strengthening Your Application
As a reapplicant, you will be asked a series of questions in the “Program Information” section of our application, including:
“What have you done to improve your candidacy since you last applied? (100 words)”
As we often note, one way to think about crafting an application is that you are building a case for your candidacy, and this case has both personal and professional dimensions. As a reapplicant, you have already been through our application process at least once, and you should take this opportunity to reflect upon this experience and overall outcome.
When you think about your application as our Admissions Committee will – holistically and objectively – what are the strengths of your application? What are those areas that you may want to strengthen?
Our Admissions Committee will expect you to have taken steps to strengthen your candidacy since you last applied, and it is better to take a little more time to finalize your materials so you can do this important work than rushing to apply early. The more thoughtful and reflective you can be through this process the better. You will ensure you are putting yourself in a position to submit your best possible application.
All re-applicants will also need to submit a new recommendation with their application materials.
We will still be able to access your prior recommendations, but you should think about how this new recommendation can provide our Admissions Committee with the most current view on who you are as an applicant right now.
Did you know? You can choose a prior recommender as this new recommender, but they will need to submit a new recommendation – including a new ratings grid and responses to the question prompts.
Even if a reapplicant previously interviewed with Darden, a new interview would be required to be eligible for an offer of admission in the new cycle.
If you interviewed previously, as with the other aspects of the application process, we encourage you to reflect on this experience. If you are invited to interview again, is there anything you would do differently? While our interviews are conversational in nature, they are only 30-35 minutes in duration, and we find that practice and preparation can really pay dividends.
As a reapplicant, you have already been through our application process at least once, and you have already done a lot of important work as you think about an MBA, Darden and your post-MBA goals. However, the more reflective and objective you can be as you approach reapplying, the more you can be sure you are giving yourself every chance to put together the strongest application possible.
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