Q&A with Emory Goizueta Business School’s Associate Dean of MBA Admissions

Q&A with Emory Goizueta Business School’s Associate Dean of MBA Admissions

Melissa Rapp Associate Dean of MBA Admissions, Goizueta Business School

1) What’s the single most exciting development, change, or event happening at your MBA program this coming year?

One of the many exciting developments currently happening is the announcement of our Social Enterprise Fellows experiential learning projects. This semester the projects include an Investment plan for expanding the impact of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, Belonging (DEIB) services for a non-profit human capital organization, and an AgroTech market outlook and P&L simulation project for a global consumer brands company. 

2) What 2-3 qualities, skill sets, experiences do your program value most in applicants

Goizueta looks for candidates who 

  1. Are growth minded and eager to learn and collaborate with a diverse cohort in classrooms and in teams.
  2. Are seeking an opportunity to grow both professionally and personally through a rigorous classroom experience, deep networking, and experiential learning experiences.
  3. Have demonstrated impact and leadership regardless of their level or role and look for opportunities to positively drive change and influence others.


3) How does your team approach the essay portion of the application specifically? What are you looking for as you read the essays? Are there common mistakes that applicants should try to avoid? One key thing they should keep in mind as they sit down to write them?

We look at essays as a way for candidates to tell their story and add dimension to the more practical parts of the application. Every essay is read and considered in the evaluation process.  We expect candidates to answer the question asked in a personal way that demonstrated their experiences. Please don’t try to use essays written for other schools, don’t use AI to write your essays, and always have someone else proofread your work. Keep your own story, your motivations, and your goals in mind as you sit down to write your essays.

4) Do you have any application tips (for essays & recommendations) for MBA applicants? 

My first and best application tip is to start your application, give yourself a deadline, and submit it.  There’s never a perfect time to apply so if you are thinking about it, now is the time.

For essays, answer the questions being asked, don’t write what you think we want to hear; focus on your story and an answer true to you. Proofread well. Read the question before you start writing, think about the question for a couple of days, jot down ideas or map your answer, and then start writing.

For recommendations, follow the guidance from the school on what type of recommender they want you to use. For most MBA programs, choosing someone who knows you in a professional setting is preferred. Ask your recommender a few weeks before a recommendation is due. A good recommendation takes time to write. Provide your recommender with your current resume. Be a good human and write them a thank you note and let them know what the outcome of your application is.

5) How important is standardized testing for an MBA application to Emory, and is there a preference for GMAT, GRE, EA for your full-time program?

Goizueta requires a standardized test score and accepts the GMAT, GRE, MCAT, and LSAT. Candidates with strong quantitative backgrounds can apply for a test waiver  

6) What resources are available at your MBA program to assist with internship and full-time job opportunities (or to advance their Career Path)?

All Goizueta MBA students receive comprehensive and personalized career support from Goizueta’s Career Management Center (CMC). Part of this career support comes through a required course called “Professional Development,” which all MBA students take during their first semester. This course provides foundational training and practice for the MBA recruiting process. It covers topics such as networking, preparing for employer interactions, conducting company research, and interviewing for MBA-level roles. 

Additionally, each job-seeking Goizueta MBA student is assigned to a dedicated career coach who will partner with them throughout their time in the MBA program. Students work with their coaches on a one-on-one basis to discuss their job search strategy, update their resume, and practice for interviews. This coaching is available to students for both the internship and full-time job search.

Finally, in addition to coaching and training, the CMC provides access to MBA job opportunities. We have an Employer Relations Team who coordinates school-managed interviews, plans events with a variety of employers, and sources MBA-level job postings for our students. 

7) Favorite Hangout for Goizueta’s  students?

Goizueta students’ favorite hangout is Ladybird Grove & Mess Hall on the bustling Atlanta Beltline.




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