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Dartmouth / Tuck Essay Topics

Tuck School of Business – Dartmouth College

The Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth is part of the larger Dartmouth College campus situated in Hanover, New Hampshire.  Tuck stands out from its peer schools for offering only a full-time MBA program with no part-time or executive options, though students may pursue joint or dual degrees in conjunction with Dartmouth and other leading universities.  Tuck students share an extremely close-knit MBA experience in the scenic Upper Valley, and the lack of a doctoral program helps facilitate very cohesive working relationships between faculty and MBA students.

Introduce Yourself

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Tuck’s 54 full-time faculty members teach MBA courses across 16 areas of expertise. The faculty also contribute to Tuck’s six research centers, which study topics ranging from digital strategies to international business.


Tuck’s faculty members generally use a combination of lecture and discussion to convey course material.  Tuck’s small incoming classes of about 285 MBA students are each divided into four sections of 60 to 70 students who often work together throughout their Fall Term.  These sections are further divided into study groups of five to six students each.

The Tuck MBA program runs on a quarter schedule, with three terms of classes and a Summer Term reserved for internships.  Tuck’s pre-term, including the very popular Out-ward Bound program, typically takes place across two weeks in mid to late August.  Formal orientation spans the last week in August, and first-year classes commence in the first week of September, one week before second-year classes start.  Fall examinations correspondingly occur at different times for first- and second-year students, though all conclude around mid-December.

The fall of students’ first year is further divided into Term A and Term B, and Term A courses and exams conclude in early October before Term B work begins.  In the spring, students complete the mandatory First-Year Project (FYP), a staple of the Tuck program that puts student’s comprehension of the first-year curriculum to the test through a five-student consulting project undertaken for real businesses.  Students may propose their own projects or pursue a number of cases provided by the school.
Tuck students take 16 required courses, including the FYP, and two electives in the first year and often satisfy the ethics and social responsibility mini-course core requirement in their second years.  Mini-courses are offered alongside full-term courses yet meet for fewer weeks.  In total, students must complete 46.5 credits in year one and 36 in year two, or 82.5 in order to graduate.

Second-year students have their choice of over 100 electives and must take a minimum of 12 full-term courses.  Tuck students do not have the option to pursue a major, but they can tailor their curriculum to specialize in areas such as finance and marketing.  Most second-year students pursue an independent study at Tuck, allowing them to work under two faculty members to explore diverse topics in their fields of interest.  Second-year students can also apply for the chance to spend a semester abroad at one of Tuck’s 20 international partner programs.

In addition, Tuck offers several unique learning opportunities, including its Research-to-Practice Seminars that let students weigh in on faculty members’ most up-to-date research.  MBA students can also undertake a field study course through the Tuck Global Consultancy, through which students spend four to six weeks performing on-site research and analysis of firms and NGOs internationally before presenting their findings to both U.S.-based and overseas senior management teams.  The Healthcare Initiative is another diverse aspect of the Tuck MBA, bringing resources and industry leaders from across Dartmouth and beyond to help Tuck students become thought leaders in the healthcare space.

Other MBA Degree Options

The Tuck School of Business offers only the MBA degree, and the only route for attaining it is the full-time, two-year program.  However, Tuck does provide three joint-degree options within Dartmouth: the MD/MBA, MPH/MBA and PhD/ MBA. Five dual degrees—the MBA/MA, MBA/MALD, MBA/ MELP, MBA/MPA, and MBA/MPP —are also offered in conjunction with other institutions in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic.

First-Year Curriculum

Fall A

  • Analysis for General Managers
  • Leading Individuals and Teams
  • Managerial Economics
  • Statistics for Managers

Fall B

  • Capital Markets
  • Decision Science
  • Financial Measurement, Analysis, and Reporting
  • Leading Organizations
  • Management Communication


  • Competitive and Corporate Strategy
  • Corporate Finance
  • Global Economics for Managers
  • Marketing


  • First-Year Project
  • Operations Management
  • Personal Leadership
  • Electives

Degree Offerings at Tuck

Full-time MBA

Joint Degrees within Dartmouth College

Dual Degrees with other institutions

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Clubs, Conferences & Competitions

Despite the school’s small size, Tuck students can engage in nearly 70 student groups on campus.  Club focuses include professional, cultural and athletic interests.  The school also supports a relatively large number of social interest and volunteering initiatives such as the Tuck Ambassador Program and Tuck Community Consulting.  Students interested in event organizing and volunteering have opportunities both in the Hanover community, through events such as Run for the Kids, and more broadly through conferences such as the Women in Business Conference.

Each year, Tuck hosts a range of conferences; some notable examples are the Diversity Conference, the Business & Society Conference, and the Private Equity Conference.  MBA students can also take part in a number of competitions both within the school and on a national level.  These include the Venture Capital Investment Competition, Dartmouth Entrepreneurial Network Business Plan Competition, and the Negotiation Challenge, to name a few.

Campus Spaces

Dartmouth’s picturesque New England campus also houses the Tuck campus, which is comprised of 11 connected buildings.  Three key academic buildings are the Murdough Center, Tuck Hall and Byrne Hall.  The school describes itself as having a “residential program,” and so its three residence halls are active places in which to build a community.  Tuck students may opt to live in Dartmouth’s graduate housing or can choose to live in both on- and off-campus apartments; unlike at many other leading programs, many students choose to live on campus.

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Career Services

The Career Development Office (CDO) at Tuck offers students ample opportunities to investigate new careers and find leading management positions in line with their existing career interests.  On-campus recruiting begins in the winter term for first-year students and in the fall for second-years.  During this time the office hosts workshops and panels, job postings and company briefings, and it also organizes global career trips for student organizations with professional focuses on a particular industry or region.

Tuck students benefit from individual counseling from Career Coaches, who bring diverse experience from a range of industries to guide Tuck students in their career choices.  In addition to alumni networking support, Tuck-specific resources are available for both full-time employment and internship seekers, such as the Maynard Entrepreneurial Internship Program.  Students can also find nonprofit internship information and funding through Tuck GIVES and the Revers Board Fellows.

Career Statistics

Graduates of the Class of 2016 received on average a base salary of $123,934 in their post-MBA roles, with an average signing bonus of $28,962.  Thirty-six percent of the class chose to work in consulting. Financial services ranked close behind at 20% of graduates, including the 13% who went into investment banking.  The consumer goods and technology industries drew 13% and 16% of the class, respectively, while 4% of graduates each went into healthcare/pharmaceuticals and manufacturing.  The largest group of graduates, 40%, chose job functions in consulting, and 23% took finance and accounting positions.  The next most pursued post-MBA functions were general management and marketing at 16% each.

Over half of all 2016 graduates took post-MBA positions in the Northeastern U.S., lending credence to the trend that graduates often find work in the region where their school is located.  The second highest percentage of Tuck graduates, 15%, opted to move to the West Coast, while 11% found employment internationally and the remainder spread out throughout the U.S.

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The Class Profile

Tuck’s Class of 2018 has 285 students who had each completed an average five years of full-time work experience by the time of matriculation.  Tuck first-years represent 35 nationalities, and 30% of students entering in 2016 are international.  Meanwhile, 44% of first-years are female, a 12% increase from the class of 2016. Eighteen percent identify as members of a U.S. minority group.  The average GMAT score of 2016 entrants was 717, though results ranged from 680 to 750, and the average GPA was 3.5.  Students in the class ranged from 24 to 37 years old upon matriculation, with 28 being the average age.  Fifty-one percent of first-year students completed undergraduate majors in humanities, social sciences, or economics, followed by engineering, math or science at 26%, and business or finance at 23%.

Application Procedures

Tuck offers four rounds for admissions, including an early action option, that run from mid-October until early April.  All applicants must complete Tuck’s online application form, except for applicants submitting their materials through the Consortium for Graduate Study in Management.  In addition to this form, non-Consortium applicants must submit a non-refundable application fee of $250, academic transcripts from all academic institutions attended, their highest GMAT or GRE results, essays, two recommendations, and TOEFL or IELTS results if applicable.

Tuck provides on-campus interviews for any applicants who request them.  The admissions committee may also extend interview invitations to applicants who have not requested an interview; these interviews can take place on or off campus.

Application Checklist

  • Online Application
  • Highest GMAT/GRE/TOEFL score(s)
  • Academic Transcripts
  • Two Recommendations
  • Application fee
  • Essays

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Tuition for the Tuck MBA program is $68,910 for the 2017-2018 academic year.  However, the school notes that students will incur several other costs, such as expenses for books and supplies, room and board, and health and general spending.  Due to slight differences in estimated costs for first- and second-year students, the total estimated yearly cost for first-year students is $104,150 while the total cost for second-year students is placed at $105,915.

Applicants are automatically considered for Tuck scholarships upon submitting a completed application.  U.S. citizens and permanent residents can pay for their education through federal loans, and Tuck provides loan options that do not require a U.S. co-borrower for international applicants.

Cost of Attendance (first year)

  • Tuition $68,910
  • Board $1,650
  • Books & Supplies $1,617
  • Housing $12,090
  • Program Fee $4,950
  • Miscellaneous & Health Exp. $14,933
  • Total $104,150

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