I could not see any detailed interview experiences of Judge business school and so hope this helps to guide candidates who wish to apply to the school. I was wait listed without an interview on my R2 application before being offered a 10 minute telephone call with an adcom member to make a case on why Cambridge should be interested in me and what are my motivations. This is atypical of some other schools that have a binary decision on whether to call a candidate to interview or not. Cambridge has a very selective class profile that is diverse in geography, experience, nationality etc. with a higher threshold on average experience. So they want to be absolutely sure that a candidate will fit into the cohort and also be passionate about his goals. I presented a strong case to the adcom interviewer talking about my strengths (have a clear long-term goal and a game-plan to achieve it) and opportunities I will use to overcome my weaknesses (GPA and GMAT were pulled up as my -ves given that Cambridge have a strong intellectual bent). I convinced the adcom member about my app and got an opportunity to interview.
To be invited to a Cambridge interview is as good as an admit as there is a very high conversion rate (I would guess atleast 3 out of 4 get an offer). The interview process is day long with Networking drinks and dinner in one of Cambridge’s 31 colleges on the day before the interview. On interview day, I was told who will be my interviewer and we had a 1 hour networking coffee with other candidates before that.
My interviewer was a professor on operations management and research and we had the interview in her faculty chamber. It lasted about 25 minutes and I saw it more as Story-boarding exercise rather than an interrogative deep dive into your resume or behavioural questions (since most of these are covered in the essays). And it definitely was a 2 way process with the professor talking a bit about what Cambridge can offer in line with my goals.
– Why MBA (I also did a 1 min elevator pitch with her permission so that she knows my background and how the MBA fits into the larger picture)
– Why Cambridge (Some exaplanation from her on what are Cambridges values and expectations from a Candidate, after I completed my answer)
– We discussed a bit about Cambridge’s faculty, books etc.
– Why 1 yr and long-term goals (got answered in the above 2 questions)
– What would be your post-mba job? why?
– She talked a bit about Cambridge’s learning centres and Entrepreneurship, which gave me an opportunity to talk about my role in Clubs and what activities I will do while on-campus
– we broke out talking a bit about running/extra-curriculars in-between.
She then requested a few questions and I had 3, which meant we spent some more time talking. Towards the end of the interview, when we walked back to the common room she asked me about other schools I applied too and was surprised I did not apply to Oxford Said, despite working in Oxford city. I had a solid rationale to explain and that was a great closing note for us to part.
The interview day then continued with a presentation by Career services, lunch with the Dean/Director, MBA admissions director, adcom, alumni and other participants. We then went on a 2 hour tour of Cambridge taking in the historical sights and history of the 800+ year old university. We wrapped up with another does of coffee followed by drinks with current students for those who had budgeted time for it. Overall, it is a very personalized experience and I would recommend anyone (living in any part of the world) to plan to visit Cambridge on interview day if you are serious about your application.
My interview resulted in an offer, so I reckon it went well 🙂