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Rice / Jones Essay Topic Analysis

Rice / Jones Essay Topic Analysis

The following essay topic analysis examines Rice University’s Jones Graduate School of Business (Jones) MBA admissions essays for the 2022-2023 admissions season. You can also review essay topic analyses for other leading MBA programs as well as general Essay Tips to further aid you in developing your admissions essays.

Rice / Jones Essay Topic Analysis 2022-2023

Let’s take a closer look at each prompt.

Rice Business seeks to have a clear understanding of your career goals upon the completion of your MBA experience. In the spaces below, please share your short-term and long-term post-MBA goals in a few short sentences. This is NOT meant to be a traditional essay, rather, the purpose of this short answer response is to have a clear and direct understanding of your professional goals.

Short Answer 1

Short-Term Career Goal Text (Word Limit: 100 words):
Identify the position you hope to obtain immediately after school — down to the job title and 2-3 dream employers. You may address why this is your goal, whether for impact, skills, or as a stepping stone to your future.

Short Answer 2

Long-Term Career Goal Text (Word Limit: 100 words):
Identify the role you wish to occupy in the long term. You can also enhance the answer by accounting for the larger impact you hope to ultimately have in your career.

Required Essay 1

Please choose one of the prompts below. You can submit a written essay (Word Limit: 500 words) or a video (Time Limit: 3 minutes).

  • Prompt #1: What movie, song, or book has most influenced your life and the way you view the world? Why?
  • Prompt #2: While we know a picture is worth 1000 words, in 500 words or less tell us the story of a photo of your choosing that has significant value in your life experiences. Please feel free to share your photo using the upload tool on the next page.

Please select the prompt you are choosing to answer:
-Prompt #1 – Submit a written essay (500 word limit)
-Prompt #1 – Submit a video essay (3 minute time limit)
-Prompt #2- Submit a written essay (500 word limit)
-Prompt #2 – Submit a video essay (3 minute time limit)

In deciding what content to develop, it’s  important to approach this essay from a strategic standpoint and write about something that is relevant to your business school candidacy. Remember that specific anecdotes will make a greater impression on your reader than a broad discussion.

The first prompt reflects a desire to get to know applicants on a more personal level. While applicants have a myriad of options in choosing a movie, song or book to discuss, the most important part of a candidate’s response will be to showcase their self-awareness by articulating why they connect with the content. It’s also worth noting that selecting an item that isn’t currently ubiquitous can help one stand out from other applicants and showcase a tendency to follow your own path. At the same time, selecting something that’s too obscure may create a missed opportunity to connect with the admissions reader over a shared favorite. We therefore recommend selecting a book, movie or song who several of your friends or family have at least heard of. (That said, if you believe that something by an unknown local artist is truly your best and most authentic answer to this question, we wouldn’t rule it out — and maybe you’ll win them a new fan in your admissions reader.)

No matter which you select, applicants should not presume that the admissions reader will be familiar with your choice. Effective responses to this question will highlight specific details about the selection and explain in detail how they have influenced one’s own life and worldview. Remember that the selection is a vehicle for sharing information about yourself — and hinting at your fit with Jones — in this essay. As a final note, applicants should review the entirety of the book, movie or song they choose to ensure that the message they want to convey is supported. It would also be wise to consider the entirety of a writer’s or creator’s oeuvre and public image, and to steer clear of the controversial or over-exposed.

Option 2 is a chance to literally show the adcom who you are, where you come from, or what you care about. While your hobbies and activities are certainly of interest to the adcom, it’s important to avoid getting too personal. For instance, choosing a picture of and writing about one’s family can make an applicant sound immature (as though he or she hasn’t fully left the nest), and it’s difficult to predict how a reader will react to comments on potentially sensitive topics like politics or religion. Applicants will want to think reflectively about their values and personality, as well as strategically about what makes them unique with respect to other applicants. It is important to discuss your influences/experiences in a compelling and personal manner that conveys the depth of your enthusiasm for your topic.

When it comes to choosing a written or video format, you should consider your strengths and what format the content ultimately lends itself to. There are also several factors to consider when composing a video essay. No matter which prompt you settle on, it would be wise to connect how your experience would translate to involvement at Jones, or how you could become a part of their community.

Optional Essay

If you have any additional information for the admissions committee or if you wish to clarify any aspect of your application (including breaks in employment, your choice of recommendation providers, your past academic performance, etc.), you may submit an additional, optional essay. (750 word limit)
This response will be an appropriate place to address any elements of one’s application that need further explanation (e.g. recommender choice, expected promotions, etc.). The wording of this essay is fairly open and inviting, and so it may be an appropriate place to share an additional anecdote or highlight an impressive accomplishment. Applicants should aim to demonstrate good judgment in deciding whether to respond to this prompt, and should take care not to introduce information that appears elsewhere in their materials or that could have been covered in response to the above essay.

Clear Admit Resources

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