The Leading Independent
Resource for Top-tier MBA
Home » Blog » Admissions Tips » Application Tips » Kellogg Admissions Director Shares How School Assesses Candidates’ Interpersonal Skills

Kellogg Admissions Director Shares How School Assesses Candidates’ Interpersonal Skills

Kellogg01 editedThe director of admissions at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management has devoted a series of recent blog posts to demystifying the admissions process at the school. Her most recent post shares what she and her team are looking for as they assess candidates’ interpersonal skills.

How well a candidate fits with the school’s MBA program is a significant consideration for the Kellogg admissions team, as it is at many top programs. “Our community values collaboration, involvement and giving back, and we look for that in our applicants as well,” wrote Admissions Director Beth Tidmarsh in a blog post earlier this week. Candidates who thrive in team-based environments will fit in well at the school, she continued.

So, how can you demonstrate a cultural fit with Kellogg in your application? Not by showing simply that you are an agreeable team player. Tidmarsh wants to see that you can productively push ideas forward, even in the face of disagreement. “Our ideal applicant likes to hear different viewpoints, respects others, can voice and challenge opinions and isn’t afraid to speak up, but can do so in a way that’s collaborative and would help further a group or a classroom more than simply agree,” she says.

If you have an example of just such an experience, sounds like it might make great subject matter for an essay. Or perhaps your ability to work in teams is something one of your recommenders might be able to speak to.

Not much experience working in teams? Don’t despair, says Tidmarsh. “We recognize that some people may come from an environment that requires more independent work,” she writes. “Knowing that you want to grow in this area, explaining that you crave more teamwork and collaboration, expressing that you want to push yourself in that area — all of that is valuable information for our admissions team.”

Check out Tidmarsh’s entire series for valuable insights as you prepare your Kellogg application.