An important element of the business school application is your resume; it provides Admissions Committees a concise snapshot of your accomplishments to date. Often, candidates will submit a similar resume that they would use for professional purposes, but the business school resume should be tailored differently. Here is how you should craft your resume when applying to MBA programs.
Focus on Impact and Results
There is a tendency for applicants to just list their responsibilities and tasks for each role (both professional and extracurricular) without commenting on the impact and results from the different projects they have worked on. What have been the outcomes of the projects that you have been engaged in? Keep in mind that business schools are seeking candidates who are impact-oriented; therefore, it is important that this comes through in the resume.
Highlight your involvement in extracurricular/community activities
In your business school resume, there should be an emphasis on the roles you have assumed in extracurricular/community activities (both during college and post-college) and the impact you have had. Business schools gauge how involved you will be in their communities as a student through your prior endeavors. If you have been heavily involved in your communities, I recommend having a separate section in your resume focusing on your prior and current extracurricular involvement. If your extracurricular involvement has been on the lighter side, then it can be mentioned in an "Additional Information" section at the bottom of the resume.
Unless otherwise stated, your resume should be one page in length and it should be readable. To the latter point, I have many times seen candidates squeeze in as much information as possible by reducing the margins and the font. While it's okay to play around with the margins and the font a little bit, there should be sufficient white space in the final product so that no one has to strain their eyes to read it. Remember, at the end of the day, Admissions Committee members are only human; it's in your best interest to submit materials that make it as easy as possible for them to review!
You've accomplished a lot thus far in your life and career! These tips will help to make sure that comes through.
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Ivy Groupe is a boutique MBA admissions consulting company founded by Shaifali Aggarwal, who received her MBA from Harvard Business School and undergraduate degree from Princeton University. Shaifali’s philosophy focuses on authenticity and storytelling to help clients craft compelling and differentiated applications that stand out. With this approach, Shaifali’s clients have gained admission to top-tier MBA programs such as Harvard, Stanford, Wharton, Kellogg, MIT, Columbia, Booth, Tuck, and Yale, among others.
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