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Home » News » Weekly Columns » MBA News You Need » MBA News You Need: MBA Essay Advice from Michigan Ross, Marketing Might at Wharton, Summer Reading from Stanford GSB, and More from Washington Foster and CEIBS

MBA News You Need: MBA Essay Advice from Michigan Ross, Marketing Might at Wharton, Summer Reading from Stanford GSB, and More from Washington Foster and CEIBS

Each week, we collect all the MBA news that’s fit to print and provide a quick overview of the latest updates from top business schools around the world.

Here’s your MBA News You Need digest for the week of July 8, 2019.

Michigan Ross Adcom Offers MBA Application Essay Advice

Michigan Ross recently released its 2019-2020 MBA application essay questions. While previous Ross applicants will recognize most of the questions, the school updated one of the short answer prompts.  This year, instead of “I find it challenging when people…” the prompt was changed to “I was challenged when…” The new goal is to inspire candidates to provide a specific experience.

In a blog about the update, Managing Director of Full-Time MBA Admissions Soojin Kwon addressed the most frequently asked question about Michigan Ross’ MBA essays:

Should they be personal or professional?

“Share stories—and insights—that no one else can, and that haven’t been highlighted elsewhere in your application,” said Kwon. “A candidate’s goal should be to share unique stories that offer insight into who they are. The key is to give insight into how you think and feel—that’s what is interesting. It doesn’t matter if the story is personal or professional.”

Read the full blog here.

Wharton Student Lauds Marketing Opportunities

Joy Sun, WG’19

Joy Sun (WG’19) isn’t your typical MBA candidate. She chose a Wharton MBA not to pivot her career, but to enhance her marketing game. Sun had plenty of experience in the analytical side of marketing, having managed a $3.5 million advertising budget at Wayfair, but she wanted to experience more of the creative side.

Sun’s decision to pursue an MBA at Wharton was to dig deep into the school’s robust brand marketing curriculum.  “Our professors are really in touch with real-world questions, which is why I feel like they’re very valuable,” she said.

Sun also enrolled in Semester in San Francisco (SSF), an immersive learning experience for MBA students. It was an excellent opportunity for her to get to know the Bay Area as well as dip her toes in the startup world.

During her time at Wharton, she’s worked for four startups, which has led her to working in every aspect of marketing and on a range of projects. “It’s a lot broader in scope. Classes that I took at Wharton, such as Partnerships, Brand Marketing, and Digital Marketing were directly applicable to startup marketing strategy and execution,” said Sun.

You can read her full story here.

Summer Reading List from Stanford GSB

Here’s what you should be reading this summer according to several Stanford GSB professors:

  • Fifth Risk by Michael Lewis covers how the current U.S. government is exposing us to enormous risk through willful ignorance and abuse of power. It also explores individuals within the U.S. government who are doing critical work.
  • Animal Farm by George Orwell is a poignant tale about how power corrupts. It’s a book that everyone should read, according to assistant professor of finance, Juliane Begenau.
  • Ship of Gold in the Deep Blue Sea: The History and Discovery of The World’s Richest Shipwreck by Gary Kinder is a book about how brainpower and technology were used to harvest a billion dollars’ worth of gold from a 100-year-old treasure ship.
  • Bad Blood by John Carreyrou is an account of Theranos and Elizabeth Holmes, recommended by professor of public and private management and accounting, Maureen McNichols.
  • Tango Lessons: A Memoir by Meghan Flaherty is a personal story of strength and resilience that will give readers a newfound appreciation for tango as an art form.
  • How to Invent Everything: A Survival Guide for the Stranded Time Traveler by Ryan North is a fun and informative read that leads readers through significant innovations of our past. This book comes recommended by professor of management and marketing, S. Christian Wheeler.

Find the full list of recommended books here.

Washington Foster Dean Bids Farewell

Jim and Cheryl Jiambalvo

Jim Jiambalvo has spent the past 14 years as the dean of the University of Washington’s Foster School of Business. At the end of June, Jiambalvo stepped down from his position and bid farewell to Foster. In his last blog, Jiambalvo looked back fondly on his time at the school, describing his tenure as Dean as “fulfilling, stimulating, and enjoyable beyond what I imagined.”

Dean Jiambalvo shared stories about the alumni and supporters who impacted him and how their help made his work possible. He wrote about how they helped him build outstanding facilities and experiential-learning experiences that have made Foster “The Best Public Business School” in the U.S. The retired dean also wrote about how the advice of faculty and staff propelled his career.

Finally, Jimbalvo shared how excited he was to welcome new dean Frank Hodge who will be “terrific.”

Read the full farewell blog here.

Mission Statement from CEIBS President

CEIBS president Dipak Jain recently sat down to talk about the new journey that lies ahead for the school. He discussed topics ranging from academic excellence to cultural relevance, as well as social impact. President Jain outlined the priorities for CEIBS as the school moves forward, highlighting plans for international visibility.

“We would not like to be seen as a business school [that is] just in China. We are truly a business school that will educate our students about what’s happening in the world, so we need to increase our international visibility,” said Jain.

He went on to talk about increasing CEIBS presence in the U.S., doing more with schools and companies there, including its collaboration with Northwestern University. The plan is to target major cities in the U.S. and link with a business school in those cities for additional student exposure. At the same time, Jain also spoke about strengthening the School’s European and African initiatives.

On October 7, CEIBS will have an official inauguration of the new Zurich Campus. However, the school’s focus will still be Chinese knowledge, which is why the words “China essence” are a part of the new theme.

Read more about CEIBS Global Initiatives here.

Posted in: Feature Small, MBA News You Need, Weekly Columns

Schools: CEIBS, Michigan / Ross, Stanford GSB, U. Washington / Foster, UPenn / Wharton

About the Author


Kelly Vo  

Kelly Vo is a writer who specializes in covering MBA programs, digital marketing, and topics related to personal development. She has been working in the MBA space for the past four years in research, interview, and writing roles.

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