Wharton Penn Essay Tips
Also, identify the appropriate academic activities that dovetail with your tastes and aptitude.
If you were rejected (or waitlisted) last time, use these 250 words to tell the Wharton Admission Committee that there have been enough changes in your profile to justify a revaluation of your candidature.
Your aim will be to present the professional, academic and personal improvements that make you a stronger candidate for a Penn Wharton admission this year. State persuasively why you deserve a second chance.
What steps have you taken to strengthen your application? Stronger work experience, professional achievements, better GMAT, personal achievements, accomplishments on the social front, international exposure or academic accomplishments can all find place in this reapplicant essay. Proactive Wharton-specific steps taken by you, perhaps based on direct or indirect feedback from Wharton, might prove a trump card. As the Wharton site says, "The most important thing is that you demonstrate through essays, subsequent career growth, and/or academic preparation that you are a stronger candidate who will add to the Wharton community."
Wharton Required Essay
What are your professional objectives? (300 words)
Wharton Required Essay Tips
In this essay you have the opportunity to not only evaluate your action at a particular time in the past, but possibly also to explain how your outlook and personality might have changed since then.
"What was the thought process behind your decision?" is the first key element in this essay. Why and how did you decide as you did? What is your decision making process? How do you weigh different aspects of a situation/opportunity? What is your risk appetite? What competing opportunities or options did you choose instead? - after all if it is a clear "opportunity" why wouldn't you have taken it? The answers of these questions can be used to display the breadth, depth and maturity of your thought process; if the situation is professional it could additionally be used to demonstrate your business acumen.
The second part of the question "Would you make the same decision today?" is somewhat tricky. An emphatic "no" might mean that you made the wrong decision (and probably got it ALL wrong) while an emphatic "yes" could signal that you have not learnt much since then. A happy medium might to be answer with a conditional yes, and mention how what you have since learnt might have made the decision making better and the choice clearer. These are very general guidelines; you will have to make your choice based on your beliefs and the particulars of the given situation.
The chosen example could be either a personal or professional opportunity, through a professional opportunity seems more fitting and might give greater freedom for explaining the decision making process.
Go for it!
Wharton Essay 3
Describe a failure that you have experienced. What role did you play, and what did you learn about yourself? How did this experience help to create your definition of failure? (600 words)
Wharton Essay 3 Tips
This is an exact replication of last year's prompt, with the last question added on, and similar to the 2008-2009 question "Describe a failure or setback that you have experienced. How did you respond, and what did you learn about yourself?".
That this question repeats itself in one form or another year after year in the Penn application shows how Wharton wants to see how you handle failure and the attendant learning opportunities therein.
As in most failure essays the key to getting it right is to begin your thought process from the second part of the question "What did you learn about yourself". Choose an example with inspirational learning - a significant and credible incident that has left it's mark on you. Wharton, with it's admirable focus on the individual, wants to know your personal reaction to the event and the lessons you learnt from it. If the essay convincingly portrays a person who can face difficulties, overcome challenges, learn from mistakes, handle pressure, understand complex situations and continuously learn, you might have written the perfect essay. Never forget that the failure essay is in reality meant to be a success story where you learnt, improved and readied yourself to be a better professional, better leader and (perhaps!) a better person.
It is imperative that the essay underlines your ability to adapt, change and better yourself. After all that is what is expected from you during the Wharton MBA program and in your post-MBA career.
While the qualities that you reflected while fire-fighting the incident or it's aftereffects remain the core reason for the essay, please take care to choose a failure that is "real". A fluffy failure not only makes for a weak essay but will also probably puts you on the hot seat during the Wharton interview.
Go for it!
Wharton Essay 4
Wharton Essay 4 Tips
For selecting the particular situation for the essay, look back to identify professional or personal circumstances when you found your interaction with an individual (though you could expand it to a team/group if you do it well) particularly challenging. While this essay could focus on your people skills, leadership abilities, your communication skills or any other relevant quality which you want to highlight, the what, why & how of the challenge and its resolution will determine the strength of the essay.
Last year's question "Tell us about a time when you had to adapt by accepting/understanding the perspective of people different from yourself." offers further hints as to what is expected from this essay. How you understood diverse viewpoints and resolved conflict of opinions/perspectives could be one key aspect of this essay. Apart from the qualities mentioned above adaptability and a broad open outlook might be qualities that you highlight.
Like in all essay packages, but even more so here, make the final choice of the example keeping in mind the content, theme and examples you have picked for the other Wharton essays. A conclusion wherein you resolved issues and developed a fruitful relationship would be an ideal way to end the essay.
Go for it!