University of California Berkeley (Haas School of Business)

It takes individuals with bold thinking, a penchant for questioning the norms and taking action with firm conviction, in the face of ridicule, harsh criticism and outright rejection, for true change to occur. The ability to differentiate between brute force and tactful diplomacy and knowing when to use what is an essential skill for effective leadership. While you are not expected to have caused a global revolution, you need to demonstrate bold thinking and being an agent of change in whatever capacity you were able to in order to show that you are Berkeley material.

How to Demonstrate Your 'Fit' for

University of California Berkeley (Haas School of Business)

Haas’ has four key principles: (1) question the status quo (bold ideas), (2) confidence without attitude (evidence-based decisions), (3) student always (community), and (4) beyond yourself (integrity).  Simply put, Berkeley seeks students who can meet two distinct requirements – those who can stand alone as individuals and stand up for what they believe in, but can also put on their teamwork coat and work well with others.  They want to find candidates who are looking to make an impact and take risks.  Success in the admissions process is highly driven by your ability to demonstrate that you have demonstrated and will act according to Haas’ principles during and after business school, and that you’re willing to act as a “bold leader” who is willing to stand apart and take chances in the interest of innovation and positive change. 

Haas is also a strong program for International Business, with many course offerings focused specifically on the subject.  It offers it students exchange program options across the globe, and it’s International Business Development (IBD) program provides the opportunity for students to work on a global consulting project.  Additionally, given its location, Haas’ brand is often acknowledged as a strong technology brand.  Its Management of Technology Program, which is a joint program with the College of Engineering, champions technological advancement as a key driver of the future of business.  Other notable programs include its certificates in health management and real estate.  Articulating awareness of Haas’ various academic programs focused in these specific fields, and how those programs will provide value to you in pursuit of your goals, is a great way to demonstrate your enthusiasm for Haas, who prides itself on the strength of its academic programs.

Haas also champions business ethics and social responsibility.  Its Social Venture Business Plan Competition invites business schools from across the US to compete for $100,000 by presenting business plans that are rooted in driving environmental and/or societal impact.  Articulating your awareness of, and passion for, solving ethical issues in your career is a solid strategy for catching the eye of the Admissions Committee.

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