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Chicago Booth Interview Questions & Report: Round 1 / Alumnus / Off-campus

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The interview was blind and was conducted at a local coffee shop not far from my home. I received the interview invite during the last day of the invite release, and it took around 1 week to schedule the interview with an alumnus. From the start, it was clear that the interview was meant to be more conversational and casual, and the setting was perfectly conducive for that objective.

The questions I was asked were fairly straightforward and standard, and I didn’t feel that there were any “gotcha” moments. It really seemed that the interviewer was trying to gauge my strengths as an applicant and my personal qualities that would be beneficial at Booth. General questions asked were:

  1. Walk me through your resume/Tell me about yourself.
  2. Job-specific questions like “What’s your view on the regulatory outlook for the banking industry?”, which is relevant given my experience.
  3. Why Booth? (This was particularly important as Booth doesn’t have a huge presence in my city.)
  4. Why MBA/consulting? This turned to a broader discussion about my intended focus, and he even offered advice about the consulting timeline since both he and his wife are consultants.
  5. Questions for interviewer.

My interviewer had graduated 5 years prior, so he tried to inform me about his experience both at Booth and in a city with a relatively small alumni base. I appreciated that he was so honest about his likes and dislikes of the program, never shying away from the many questions I asked. I was surprised that the actual interview (i.e. questions for me) only lasted ~30 minutes, but we spent over an hour talking about his experiences at Booth.

Ultimately, after talking to other applicants, I get the sense that Booth really isn’t trying to trap or trick applicants during the interview period. They clearly know you’re bright (since you have to be invited to interview), so this is just another data point to understand applicants on a more personal level and shape the class around that. I’d encourage applicants to prepare, but not stress about their interviews (to whatever extent possible). Really just be yourself!

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