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COVID-19 MBA Admissions Updates and Cancellations

The novel coronavirus disease COVID-19 has disrupted daily life for nearly everyone, including MBA applicants, admitted candidates, and current students.  Given the reliance on virtual community in these challenging times, Clear Admit is keeping a running chart and news/notes of how COVID-19 is impacting admissions deadlines, admitted student events, campus visits, and much more.  In the chart and notes section below, you will find everything you need, along with a link to each school’s COVID-19 updates page.

Please let us know if you have any information to add by emailing us at [email protected].

COVID-19 MBA Admissions Updates 

Table last updated: 5/5/2021

Business School Admitted Student Events Campus Visit Program Recruiting Travel GMAT/  GRE Flexible Fall 2021 Classes In-Person Start Date Delay Deposit Delay Requires Student COVID-19 Vaccination
Anderson Online Suspended Suspended Yes Substantial courses in person No No TBD
ASU WP Carey Online Limited Suspended Waivers Available Yes No No TBD
Booth Online Suspended Suspended Yes Yes No No TBD
Cambridge Online Suspended Suspended Yes Yes No No
CEIBS Online Suspended Suspended Yes Yes, Oct 12 No
CMU Tepper Online Suspended Suspended Yes, waiver Most courses No No Yes
Columbia Online Suspended Suspended Yes, waiver Yes No No Yes
Cornell Online Suspended Suspended Yes Yes No No Yes
Darden Online Suspended Suspended Yes Yes No No TBD
Duke Online Suspended Suspended Yes, Exec Assmt Yes Yes No Yes
Georgetown Online Suspended Suspended Yes Yes No No Yes
Haas Online Suspended Suspended Yes, first week remote No No Yes
Harvard Online Suspended Suspended Yes Yes No No Yes
IMD Online Suspended Suspended Yes Yes No No No
Indiana Kelley Online Suspended Suspended Yes Yes No No No
INSEAD Online Suspended Suspended Yes Yes No No
Kellogg Online Suspended Suspended Yes, waiver Most classes No No Yes
LBS Online Suspended Suspended Yes Hybrid plan No No
Manchester Online Suspended Suspended Yes No No
Maryland Smith Online Suspended Suspended Yes, waiver Yes No No Yes
MIT Sloan Online Suspended Suspended Yes No No Yes
NYU Stern Online Suspended Suspended Yes Yes: 1 YR Programs No Yes
OSU Fisher Online Suspended Suspended Yes, waiver Majority in-person with capacity changes No No No
Oxford Online Suspended Suspended Yes No No
Rochester Simon Online Suspended Suspended Yes Planned in-person Yes, mid-Aug No Yes
Ross Online Suspended Suspended Yes No No Residential Students Only
Stanford Online Suspended Suspended Yes Planned in-person No No Yes
Tuck Online Suspended Suspended Planned in-person No No Yes
UCI Merage Online Suspended Suspended Yes Majority in-person No No Yes
UNC Kenan-Flagler Online Suspended Suspended Yes, waiver Yes Yes, 8/31 No No
UT Austin McCombs Online Suspended Suspended Yes, waiver Yes No No No
Wharton Online Suspended Suspended Yes Yes: Lauder Program No Yes
Yale SOM Online Suspended Suspended Yes Majority in-person No No Yes

Latest COVID-19 News and Notes

  • With the introduction of COVID-19 vaccines, more than 30% of Americans have gotten the shots necessary to protect against infection. Colleges and Universities are updating their policies for required vaccinations in preparation for in-person classes this coming fall semester. At this time a growing number of US colleges and universities require students returning to campus in the fall of 2021 to be vaccinated against the coronavirus. Some schools are mandating that just residential students get the immunization. Even those who are not making it a requirement heavily stress the importance of vaccination, among other measures, to ensure a safe fall semester.
  • Michigan / Ross has created an internship program to help students gain experience during a time when internships are scarce.
  • Harvard Business School will enroll a class of 700-730 students this fall, about 20% fewer students than usual.
  • Wharton announced that their campus should be open this fall, most likely for a mix of in-person and online instruction.
  • Harvard Business School announced that deferrals are on offer for all admitted students.  Requests must be submitted between May 15th and June 1st, and deferrals are for 1 or 2 years.  Candidates may specify a preference for a 1- or 2-year deferral, but HBS reserves the right to make the final decision around timing.
  • CMU Tepper has reduced the deposit amount needed to hold a spot in the class.
  • UT Austin has made some additional updates, adding a rolling application round on a space-available basis and announcing that applicants may now petition for a test exception under specific circumstances: For all MBA programs: If a prospective student/applicant has not been able to take the GMAT, GRE, EA, TOEFL, or IELTS exam due to one of the following reasons related to COVID-19, we are providing the opportunity to petition for a special test exception. (1) Prospective student is unable to take an exam at home due to technology or other test-taking requirements (device availability or compatibility, internet connection, testing environment) (2) Prospective student or a family member has been diagnosed with or directly affected by COVID-19 (personally or professionally) (3) Virtual testing is not available in prospective student’s current country of residence.  The petition is available on our blog, website and application and may be submitted even if the prospective student has not started the application. After submitting the petition, the admissions committee will review the request and will get back to the prospective student within five business days.”
  • Duke / Fuqua is now taking the Executive Assessment as substitute for the GMAT/GRE: “We will accept Executive Assessment (EA) scores as well for applicants to the Daytime MBA program. If you are taking the EA, please send an email to [email protected] to let us know so that we may make that option valid on your application.”
  • IMD continues to be flexible about testing: “Candidates who demonstrate the qualities that we look for throughout the application process, but who have been unable to submit their GMAT/GRE/TOEFL/IELTS test results due to the closure of local test centers, will be given a Conditional Offer dependant on the score received once test options are made available.”
  • Kellogg is waiving the GMAT/GRE/TOEFL/IELTS tests for those who apply between now and the end of this application season.  Here is an excerpt of an email sent to applicants: “To say that we’re in the midst of widespread change is an understatement. And we understand — having spoken with thousands of people in your shoes over the years — that this might affect your decision to apply to business school.  We also know that the online options for the GMAT and GRE that became available recently do not accommodate everyone and present the added challenges of studying in a crunched timeline.  Your goals matter, and nothing about the disruption you are experiencing — from changes in your career path to difficulty in accessing testing centers — should hold you back. To that end, we will now waive the GMAT/GRE/TOEFL/IELTS requirement on our Full-Time MBA application throughout the rest of Round 3. The rolling deadline remains in place through June 1.”
  • Georgetown McDonough has announced flexibility around standardized testing in light of the pandemic.  The school will accept GMAT and GRE (in-person or online) as well as expired GMAT or GRE scores – and starting in Round 4, the program will accept the Executive Assessment exam, LSAT, and MCAT scores too.  The Round 4 deadline is April 27th, but the school will continue to take applications until June 24th, reviewing them on a rolling basis.  All interviews will be conducted virtually.  The following statement was posted on the McDonough website: “At Georgetown, how we embody our Jesuit value of cura personalis, or care of the whole person, rings true now more than ever,” said Shelly Heinrich, associate dean for MBA admissions and director of marketing. “We want applicants to prioritize their health and safety. Amid testing center closures and economic uncertainties related to COVID-19, we have given applicants more options and more time to fulfill the application requirements.”
  • CMU Tepper has announced that they are waiving application fees for anyone who applies between now and July 31st.  They are also adding a new admissions round, with a May 31st deadline (decisions by June 22nd), and a rolling admissions until July 31st.  The schools will also consider applicants without a GMAT exam with some caveats.  Specifically, the school stated: “We are temporarily allowing candidates with robust quantitative backgrounds to apply without a GMAT or GRE. Admitted candidates will be required to pass the Tepper Mathematics Prep course, attend our Math Skills Workshop, and achieve a 3.0 GPA in their first semester of the program.”
  • UNC Kenan-Flagler checked in with a new update: “UNC Kenan-Flagler will delay the official start of the Full-time MBA program to August 31 and has extended the Round 4 Full-Time MBA program deadline through July 13. Applications will be reviewed and admissions decisions released on a rolling basis. Due to COVID-19 and applicants’ reduced ability to access and prepare for the GMAT or GRE, GMAT/GRE waivers are available for new applicants. Applicants can submit other standardized test scores (e.g., SAT/ACT/LSAT/MCAT/etc.) and for those receiving waivers, formal offers of admission may be based on the successful completion of our Analytical Skills Workshop prior to the start of the program. Our admissions team is eager to help you with your questions about the application process, admissions policies and program-related information. We encourage you to connect with us any time by email at [email protected], join us for an upcoming webinar or visit our admissions status page for timely updates. In the meantime, be kind, be compassionate, be safe.”
  • U. Maryland Smith has offered to waive the GMAT/GRE requirement, according to this statement from the school: “With social distancing requirements and stay-at-home mandates in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business has implemented a GMAT/GRE waiver process for full-time MBA applications for fall 2020 enrollment. “The GMAT or GRE is an important assessment, but we review candidates holistically,” says Pasquale Quintero, senior director of full-time MBA and specialty master’s programs at the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business. “We will take into consideration academic history, work experience, industry certifications, and other factors that will strengthen one’s application.”  Applicants who submit their application by June 1, 2020, will not be required to submit a GMAT/GRE score.
  • MIT Sloan checked in with this update: “As you know, the MIT Sloan MBA Round 3 application deadline is this Thursday, April 9th. We encourage applicants to submit applications by this date in order to receive a decision by May 7, 2020.  However, in this unprecedented time, we understand that candidates may be adjusting plans when it comes to applying for an MBA program. In response, we have created an Extended Round 3 Deadline and will continue to accept applications for the MIT Sloan MBA Class of 2022 until June 15, 2020. Decisions will be made on a rolling basis.”
  • Harvard Business School voiced their support for international applicants who may potentially struggle with visa and relocation issues.  The school reaffirmed the admissions team’s commitment to admitting a talented and diverse student body – even in the face of challenges brought on by the pandemic.  The admissions director also shared the fact that they will maintain a larger-than-usual waitlist this season, in light of uncertainty.
  • Kellogg has added some flexibility for applicants.  The school has added a rolling admissions round which will follow their R3 April 8th deadline and run until 6/1.  They will also take test scores after an application is submitted and are accepting the online versions of both the GRE and GMAT.  The latest news from their admissions team is here.
  • AMBS (Manchester) shared the following news: “Forthcoming Full-time MBA admission deadlines remain in place: Round 8 (16/04) and Round 9 (21/05). Due to the widespread complications with candidates securing GMAT and GRE tests, including IELTS and TOEFL assessments, we are making an exception for the foreseeable period to allow future applicants to instead take the in-house Manchester admission test (MAT). AMBS is also happy to confirm continued availability of MBA scholarships of up to 50% of the tuition fees. The early application discount period has been extended for candidates applying to the Manchester Global Part-time MBA, to 06/04”
  • CEIBS checked in with the following update: “Due to the COVID-19 impact, CEIBS has decided to take following measures to accommodate prospective applicants: 1) To make sure we stay connected to the prospective applications, we have started a series of region specific online information sessions. Additionally, we have introduced 1-to-1 consultation session with the admissions team that the prospects can sign up for. 2) Candidates can now apply with or without a valid GMAT/GRE score. Conditional offers will be made to successful candidates requiring them to take the exam at a later date. 3) We have added an additional fourth round of admission. The deadline would be May 13th, with a decision due by June 10th 2020. 4) Most importantly, we have taken the decision to push back the commencement of the programme to October 12th, 2020.”
  • IU Kelley shared this update: “Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business MBA Program, following their April 15 deadline, will continue to accept applications from domestic candidates on a rolling basis until June 1. Candidates will be given full consideration for admission and merit-based financial aid. If disruptions caused by COVID-19 have delayed completion of the GMAT or GRE, candidates are welcome to submit their application prior to taking the tests. The admissions committee will begin the review process, but test scores must be submitted before a final decision is made. While campus visits have been temporarily suspended, candidates are welcome to contact [email protected] if they’d like to arrange a chat by phone or Skype with a member of the admissions team.”
  • UC Irvine Merage sent along the following update: “We have added a June 1st deadline. Candidates impacted by testing center closures can submit scores after their application have been submitted.”
  • UT Austin McCombs added additional R4 deadline for domestic applicants: April 28, 2020; Allowing R3 and R4 applicants to submit without test scores but will require score before a decision can be rendered. All admissions updates here.
  • UNC Kenan-Flagler shared the following update: “UNC Kenan-Flagler has waived all application fees for our Full-Time MBA through April 30 to better assist applicants taking this important step in their career. Our admissions team is also working with applicants who are impacted by testing center closures and will accept GMAT or GRE scores after their application is submitted. We are here to help and recognize that prospective MBA students may have many questions right now. While we’ve canceled on-campus events and visits, you can connect with us any time by email at [email protected] or join an upcoming webinar.”
  • CMU / Tepper offered the following statement: “Don’t hold your application for a future test! For our Round 4 deadline on April 9 we have adopted a flexible policy for test scores. If testing has been disrupted, simply note this on your application and we will work with you to populate your score when available.”  More on Tepper’s response to COVID-19.
  • Duke / Fuqua announced that the FT MBA (and other residential programs) will start a bit later than usual this fall.
  • UNC Kenan-Flagler will be adding a late round of admissions. Stay tuned for details.
  • Stanford GSB sent an email to applicants indicating that while the R3 deadline of April 8th still stands, they will accept test scores up until August 1st (and simply waitlist qualified candidates who cannot provide a score by the May 21st R3 notification date).
  • UW Foster has added a fourth round of admissions, with a deadline of May 19th.
  • Starting in mid-April, the GMAT exam will be available online.
  • Berkeley Haas sent an email notifying applicants about an added admissions deadline of May 4th (decisions on June 4th), and reminded applicants that the R3 deadline of April 2nd will remain (decisions on May 7th).  Those without a test score yet are encouraged to apply in the late round and to take advantage the ‘GRE at Home’ and forthcoming GMAT online options.
  • Yale SOM introduces ‘R3 Extended’ deadline of May 27th, with decisions coming in late June.  Regular R3 deadline of April 14th is still available to those who can submit (with decisions on May 19th).
  • Cornell Johnson has various updates about testing flexibility and student events.
  • The President of Harvard University has tested positive for COVID-19.
  • Wharton extends R3 deadline to April 15th, and Advance Access deferred enrollment deadline to May 27th.  Applicants to either deadline may submit without standardized test scores.
  • UVA Darden extends deadline to July 15th, makes admissions rolling.  Also accepting SAT and other evidence of academic aptitude for those who cannot take the GRE or GMAT.
  • ETS makes the GRE available online via new ‘GRE at Home’ offering.
  • INSEAD Dean Mihov tested positive for COVID-19 and is in stable condition in Singapore.
  • Wharton is offering a course on how COVID-19 is impacting global business
  • Wharton professor Mauro Guillen joined the Clear Admit podcast to discuss the course and the outbreak.
  • Current applicants are debating the impact of COVID-19 on LiveWire
  • Clear Admit is running an applicant and prospective student survey on how the outbreak is influencing admits and prospects.