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Once you have fully examined your options and identified your main themes, do not simply provide a handful of supporting anecdotes—or worse, recycle the stories you used in a similar essay for another school.A strong essay response to this question will involve a true exploration of the themes you have chosen and reveal a thorough analysis of decisions, motives, and successes/failures, with a constant emphasis on you conduct yourself.If you need to explicitly declare, “And what matters most to me is…,” your essay is not making a strong enough point on its own.
What people, insights, or experiences have shaped your perspectives? This might seem like obvious advice, of course, but many applicants get flustered by the question, believing that an actual “right” answer exists that they must provide to satisfy the admissions committee.
As a result, they never pause to actually consider their sincere responses, which are typically the most compelling.
If you are merely telling stories and trying to tie in your preconceived conclusions, you are probably forcing a theme on your reader rather than genuinely analyzing your experiences, and any experienced admissions reader will see right through this.
In short, be sure to fully consider and identify your most authentic answer(s), outline your essay accordingly, and then infuse your writing with your personality, thoughts, feelings, and experiences.
Required Short Answer Question: Tell us about a time within the last two years when your background influenced your participation at work or school.
(1,150 character maximum) Although this is not technically posed as an essay prompt, candidates must essentially craft a mini essay in response to this required query.If you write powerfully about your topic and connect it directly to your experiences and values, your essay should be a winner. Describe your aspirations and how your Stanford GSB experience will help you realize them.If you are applying to both the MBA and MSx programs, use Essay B to address your interest in both programs.The GSB itself notes on We therefore encourage you to contemplate this question in depth and push yourself to explore the psychological and philosophical motivations behind your goals and achievements—behind who you are today.We cannot emphasize this enough: do not make a snap decision about the content of this essay.Note that the school is not asking about a time when you applied your knowledge or offered input because you were asked to but instead about one when you were your participation.” For example, perhaps you encountered a problem that was similar to one you had faced before, and the insight and proficiency you gained from that earlier experience inspired you to want to assist with the more recent one.Or maybe an opportunity arose that involved an element close to your heart—as in, it related to a value you hold dear or a personal interest or hobby you especially enjoy—and your connection to that element compelled you to get involved.The big change this year is the addition of an Optional Short-Answer Question, which gives applicants the opportunity to share some of their most significant accomplishments and experiences.We suspect the school has provided this outlet for (likely quant-minded) candidates who might have otherwise felt compelled to shoehorn such information into their “what matters most?Do not overlook that your response must not exceed 1,150 , which to our understanding includes spaces. (Up to 1500 characters, approximately 250 words, for each example) We know from experience that when asked to write an essay that is more personal than professional or that focuses on a “why” rather than a “what,” some applicants get extremely concerned that the admissions committee will not understand or recognize how successful they have been in their career or life to date.This is just a little shorter than the length of the previous two paragraphs (together). Perhaps they feel their greatest strengths are demonstrated by their accomplishments and therefore believe that not highlighting these for the admissions committee will mean certain rejection.