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Top Yale School of Management MBA Interview Tips from Actual Interviewees

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In our ongoing review of interview advice from MBA candidates, we now shine the spotlight on the Yale School of Management (SOM) and the insights and lessons last year’s interviewees chose to share.

If you’re among the many candidates in receipt of an interview invitation, you won’t want to miss what past candidates learned from their Yale SOM interview experiences. You can thank us—and them—by paying it forward and submitting reports of your own after you interview. Want to learn more? Check out Clear Admit’s Interview Guide for Yale SOM.

How Big Is the Window of Opportunity?

Yale SOM invites many candidates—60 to 80 at a time—to visit campus for a full day of events in addition to  interviews. Several past interviewees report that Yale stuck to a set schedule and format for their interviews…

“The most surprising thing to me was the amount of questions that were asked. There wasn’t much time for discussion based on the amount of questions we got through.”

“Adcom stated that all interviews would be standardized to about 6 questions across all applicants interviewed.”

 “When I entered the room, the Admissions associate introduced herself and then told me that the interview would be 30 minutes and 6 questions.”

…while others had a different experience:

“The interview lasted 30 minutes, but we talked for 1 hour.”

“The interview was done in 15 minutes and we had some Q&A for another 10.”

Making a Good Impression

Whether your interview ends up being 30 minutes on the dot, wraps up a little early, or runs way over, the following advice from past candidates will serve you well.

A Round 2 candidate from last season had the following encouraging words to share:

“Applicants should head into their interviews at ease knowing that Yale is just trying to get to know you and your goals a little better.”

Other past interviewees had their own hypotheses:

“I think SOM is looking for a candidate who is very strong intellectually and collaboratively.”

“I think they were looking to see your communication skills. And they care about finding people who will complement and play well within the diverse student body they cultivate.”

Yale SOM Gets in on the Act!

It seems we’re not the only ones to recognize that those who interviewed before can offer some of the best advice to anxious interviewees in waiting. Yale SOM itself recently turned to its own current students and asked them to recall what helped them most before and during their interviews—as well as what they learned from the process.

A few highlights:

“Ask current students questions about their experiences! They are a great resource—they know the school and they were in your shoes very recently.”

“Talk to alums as early as possible. The earlier I approach alums, the earlier I can figure out which school is the best choice for me. Different schools hold different values, and it is incredibly important to choose a school that has the same values you do.”

“Take the time to really reflect on what you want from the MBA experience, where you might go after graduation, and which school is going to best get you there. For each person this is a different path, and getting lost in all the different blogs, rankings, and such may get you lost in where you want to go in life.”

“I didn’t have a chance to visit the school before I applied. But if you can do it, it can provide a lot of insight to meet with current students and sit in on one of our classes.”

“The application process is also a self-reflection process, which I value as a good opportunity to think about my personal values, my strengths and weaknesses, and my goals for the future.”

For the full Yale SOM piece featuring interview advice from current students, click here.

Are you preparing for your Yale SOM interview? Don’t forget to check out our Interview Guides for a deeper dive into each school’s process! Also, share your interview experience in our Interview Archive to help your fellow peers.

Clear Admit Resources
As you prepare for your Yale interview, we encourage you to consider all of Clear Admit’s Yale SOM offerings:

Lauren Wakal
Lauren Wakal has been covering the MBA admissions space for more than a decade, from in-depth business school profiles to weekly breaking news and more.