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Michigan Ross School of Business | MBA Application Essay Topics, Essay Questions, Tips

created. Moving one of it’s highly regarded programs, Multidisciplinary Action Projects (MAP), online helped Ross to create similar if not better results for its MBA class of ’21 in terms of experiential learning and placements.

The school also made significant changes to its MBA application process. One of the biggest changes to Ross’ MBA application process came in the form of a new application deadline. Since the school saw an amazing response to their extended Round 3 deadline in 2020, they decided to move up their Round 1 deadline to mid-September (September 14, 2020) and added a Round 4 deadline (June 1, 2021).

The pandemic affected GMAT and GRE takers across the world. With physical test centres for both the exams closing down, many MBA aspirants were left confused. Helping students out with this dilemma, Ross school of business decided to accept LSAT and MCAT scores for MBA admissions. The school has been accepting the LSAT and MCAT scores for their dual-degrees but now are accepting the same in lieu of the GMAT or the GRE for MBA applicants.

Moving on to how the MBA essay section of the Ross MBA application procedure got affected, two major changes were made.

  • The Short Answer questions were reduced:

Previously, an MBA applicant would have to answer three of the six prompts that Ross provided for their short MBA essays. While the six prompts provided by Ross remain, the applicant is now required to only answer two of the six prompts.

  • Reduced Careers Goals essay word limit:

The second change to the Ross MBA application essays is the reduction in word-limit for their Career Goals essay. The word-limit for the Career Goals essay has been reduced to 200 from the existing 300 word-limit.

Ross MBA Application Essays

Select one prompt from each group. Respond to your selected prompts using 100 words or fewer (100 words each; 200 words total).
Group 1
• I want people to know that I:
• I made a difference when I:
• I was aware that I was different when:

Group 2
• I am out of my comfort zone when:
• I was humbled when:
• I was challenged when:

As you research more on tips to answer different business school essay questions, you’ll find these words written in variations.


The common theme with business school essays is to really go spend some time with yourself and get to know yourself better before you answer MBA essay questions. Ross isn’t any different. These essay prompt are supposed to make you question yourself and answer from a vulnerable place. The admissions committee wants to see how well you know your strengths and weaknesses and how readily you accept them.

But that’s not all. They also want to see your thought process.

Answering MBA essay prompts that are phrased somewhat philosophically is a bit more twisted than simply answering the prompt. You have to read between the lines and tell them why your answer matters. What was the impact your answer had on your life and those around you?

The best way to answer this short essay is by answering all the prompts. You won’t be writing detailed answers for all the prompts or submitting them to Ross’ admissions committee. Instead, you’ll answer all of the six prompts mentioned above roughly. Then on your own or the help of someone, you can choose the two prompts that you believe have the most impactful answers.

Once you have two prompts selected, then go ahead and answer them according to the word-limit suggested by Ross.

Michigan Ross is a place where people from all backgrounds with different career goals can thrive. What is your short-term career goal and why? (200 words)

Whenever a business school essay question asks your post-MBA career goals, be as specific as you can be.

If you have read other blogs on, you must be familiar with our equation of employability.

Here’s how it goes.


Past + Ross MBA = Short-Term Goals

Past: It refers to the transferable skills that you have achieved during your work experience, or academic life before applying for a Ross MBA.

Ross MBA: This is how a Ross MBA can either hone your existing skills and knowledge or add more to fill the gap between your transferrable skills and the skills you need to thrive in your short-term goals.

Short-term Goals: This refers to the specific Industry, job Role, and organization you wish to work with post-MBA from Ross.


Your Careers goals essay for Ross requires you to create a seamless transition from your Past to your Short-term Goals via a Ross MBA.

Being specific with your short-term goals means that Ross should be able to provide you potential recruiters for you as you graduate from their MBA program. A really effective way to answer this question is by going through Ross’ list of recruiting companies, listed in their employment report, and identifying all potential recruiters you could apply to post-MBA.

Optional statement: Is there something in your resume or application that could use some explanation? You might want to discuss the completion of supplemental coursework, employment gaps, academic issues, etc. Feel free to use bullet points where appropriate.

This is one essay where you can feel free to not create a blueprint before answering the question. Also, don’t feel obliged to answer this optional essay question.

If you have a certain aspect of your profile that you feel doesn’t match up to Ross’ standards, this essay prompt is the right place to discuss it. If your MBA profile falls short on academic or professional grounds, this optional statement can be used to share strenuous events that might have caused that.

However, refrain from blaming the shortcomings of your profile on anyone or anything. Instead, take responsibility and share details of the steps you have taken to rectify the same. Maybe you took a Math course on Coursera to make up for a low GMAT score. Or you had responsibilities that kept you out of the workplace for a few months.

This optional essay is your chance to explain your situation to the admissions committee before you get to elaborate on it during your interviews.

For over 15+ years as an Entrepreneur, and India’s Top Educationist, Jatin has led a range of initiatives in the Education Industry. In this role, he has created many successful educational services and products geared towards generating success for professionals aspiring to join IVY League and global Top Tier Universities for MBA Programs, Masters Programs, and undergraduate courses. He is the Founder and CEO of PythaGURUS Education, and has been recognized as a thought leader in the Higher education sector. Economic Times, Hindustan Times, Times of India, India Today, Business Today, Tribune, and many other national newspapers have recognized his work, and have given him numerous opportunities to be a regular columnist. He has also served as a panelist for NDTV, and other national news channels.

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