How to write essays that ask "why this school?"

Almost any school you apply to is going to ask why you want to go to their particular school. It’s crucial to get this essay right, because schools aren’t looking for applicants who have simply copied and pasted their responses from one school over to another. Here are some examples of the “Why us?” question: Harvard Kennedy… Continue reading

Advice on writing about your career in your MPP, MBA, and MPH admissions essays

Almost any top professional school, whether an MPP, MBA, MPH, M. Ed, or MSW, is going to ask you to describe your career vision—your professional plans and goals. Why do they ask me about my professional goals? Top professional schools ask about your career vision and your professional goals, because they want to make sure that… Continue reading

Tips for Writing the Optional Essay for Harvard Kennedy School

One of the most underused tools for standing out in the application process is using the optional essay. It’s hard to write a great optional essay and very easy to write an ineffective one that annoys the admissions committee. Who should write the optional essay? Although it’s called the “optional essay,” about 70% of my… Continue reading

3 Tips for Writing the HBS Post-Interview Reflection Essay

One aspect of the HBS application that causes some of my clients some anxiety is the HBS Post-Interview Reflection Essay. Whether you are working on the reflection completely by yourself (which is what HBS states they expect on their website), or you decide to get some light feedback to improve it, these tips will help… Continue reading