The application is a storytelling exercise.

The short answer questions are a great opportunity for you to demonstrate your authentic voice. Use this space to bring together the elements of your application. We are interested in how you lead, relate to others, awareness of diversity, equity and inclusion principles, career goals and much more.

Our Professional Degree Programs are approaching their final deadlines.

  • Executive MBA: 10 June and 25 June
  • Part-Time MBA: 1 June

You bring your whole self to business school, and Darden students shape their experience in and out of the classroom. Here are some tips on the short answer portion of the application.

Short Answer Questions

Our questions reflect key values that are central to the Darden experience and community. For Executive MBA and Part-Time MBA applicants, this year’s short answer questions are as follows:

  1. What would you want your classmates to know about you that is not on your resume? (100 words)
  2. Please describe a tangible example that illuminates your experience promoting an inclusive environment and what you would bring to creating a welcoming, global community at Darden. (300 words)
  3. At this time how would you describe your short-term, post-MBA goal and how does it align with the long-term vision you have for your career? (200 words)

Additional Tips

Here are a few more tips as you think about crafting a successful essay response:

We are not reading your responses with a prescribed or “right” answer in mind.

How you choose to answer a particular question is often as insightful as what you choose to write about. The best essay responses are those that answer the question while being authentic and genuine. Don’t overthink it, and remember, whenever possible, show don’t tell!

Leave time for pre-writing.

Sometimes the first idea you have is the best idea, but sometimes the best comes out of significant thought and reflection. A little planning can save you a lot of stress. Be sure to give yourself plenty of time to craft the best essay without feeling hurried or rushed.

Keep it brief.

All questions require responses of 200 words or less. Be intentional with the word count. It often takes a few drafts to craft your answers to be authentic and compelling.

Find a good editor.

Your short answer responses should reflect your own thoughts and work. Share your draft with a friend or colleague and ask for their feedback. Is it responsive to the question? Does it sound like you? An editor (and a fresh set of eyes) can also help you catch those pesky typos and grammatical errors you might miss after reading an essay a few times.

Don’t cut and paste.

We know other schools’ essay prompts, and can always tell when applicants have repurposed essay responses. We have reasons for each of the questions we ask, and always appreciate it when applicants take time to craft a unique response.

Have you started your application? Manage it here or connect with our Admissions Committee to begin your MBA journey at Darden. Explore our Application Process page for more details.

For more information about the application, join us for our upcoming Executive MBA Application Hotline Webinar on Friday, 7 June at 12 p.m. ET.

Executive MBA Application Hotline Webinar

Friday, 7 June at 12p.m. ET