Diversity can be an “X-Factor” in MBA admissions

Anyone who believes that “diversity” is not important to MBA admissions is simply ignoring the facts.

Many different kinds of diversity are relevant. MBA candidates vary by nationality, ethnicity, race, gender, sexual orientation, undergraduate major and institution, financial standing, marital status, family history, military experience, years of work experience, physical ability, industry background, job function, and more.

Top business schools compete among themselves to increase the percentage of qualified but under-represented students in their incoming class. Adcoms actively promote strategic alliances, forums, campus weekends and other vehicles to attract and bond with under-represented minority applicants. Student organizations, proudly devoted to each distinctive segment of the community, have their own recruitment initiatives. Some MBA programs have admissions staff whose sole job is to connect with and recruit candidates whose backgrounds will help round out the student body. Application forms ask specific questions about parents’ history, “diversity” or “minority” status.

Given this reality, a serious MBA applicant must consider and answer important questions, and make key decisions, during his or her admissions campaign, such as: How do I add diversity? When have I interacted with others who are different in background or perspective? Why does my unique background and experience make me a stronger applicant? How can my unique aspects benefit others? How will the diversity of others enrich my education, network and life? What is the significance of diversity in my past, present and future? Which components of the application offer the most effective and appropriate platform for this topic?

When writing or speaking about diversity, the tone of your communication will be just as important as the content. Being authentic, respectful and open-minded is just the beginning. Sincere enthusiasm about the importance and value of “differences” will resonate with admissions committees that openly advocate for greater diversity.

One proven resource that can help a serious MBA applicant understand and navigate through the options is a professional admissions consultant who has helped many others do the same over the years. And, if that consultant and his or her teammates represent the same mosaic of backgrounds found at a top business school, then this resource is even more beneficial. Here at The MBA Exchange, with over 65 skilled colleagues, our clients tap into a scope of diversity that mirrors student communities at Harvard, Stanford, Wharton, INSEAD and other highly ranked institutions. Our global team has successfully served more than 4,000 clients from every personal, professional and academic background imaginable. This broad exposure and in-depth learning is a major asset for current and future clients.

So, as you contemplate the importance of diversity in MBA admissions, be sure to factor it into positioning your candidacy and planning your campaign from day one. Doing so will not only enhance your chances as a business school applicant but also improve you as a member of society.