You like numbers? You like math? You like money? Splendid. You like research, you say? You like to think about quicker, more efficient ways of solving problems? Inventing new and sophisticated business models? Why, it sounds like you are a research-savvy individual and you would fit right in at University of Chicago.
How to Demonstrate Your 'Fit' for
University of Chicago (Booth)
The University of Chicago brand is probably most notoriously associated with one thing… RESEARCH. You’ve probably heard news reports citing studies of out the University of Chicago, as it’s often considered to be on the best research-driven academic institutions in the world. Unsurprisingly, then, Booth is heavily focused on being on the “cutting edge”, and teaching its students best practices when it comes to academic and leadership theory. It seeks to attract well-known, well-accomplished, and super-smart, faculty members. In most recent years, it’s bragged having more Nobel laureate faculty members than another other top business school. As the school has continued to invest in its faculty, business research, and even its cutting-edge facilities in recent years, its ranking has continued to skyrocket.
Another thing that has boosted Booth’s reputation is its strong placement with recruiters. Top companies are no stranger to Booth’s campus, who often compete for top students. This is in part due to the fact that Booth has worked hard to improve its academic programs. While Booth offers many extracurricular opportunities for students, if you attend Booth you must enroll with the understanding that you’ll be working hard in the classroom. Finance is still a popular area of study at Booth, and virtually all of its academic programs have a heavy quantitative component. Demonstrating your quantitative chops, and stating that a primary goal for you in business school is to LEARN and work hard, will only serve you well in the application process.
More than most programs, Booth has one of the most flexible academic structure. While most schools have a collection of required core classes, Booth as only one – it’s Leadership Effectiveness and Development (LEAD) program, which provides an experiential environment for students to learn leadership, communication skills, and leadership. Apart from that, students are given a menu of core courses to choose from. This is a truly unique approach that no other business school provides, and exercising your enthusiasm for this high level of academic flexibility is a great way to demonstrate fit for Booth.
In addition to its strength in finance, Booth has placed greater academic focus on its entrepreneurship training. The school loves to boast about how its New Venture Challenge in NYC has launched more than 60 companies that have raised more than $125 million. This challenge invites students to build a robust business plan over a six month period, supported by immersive classes and workshops on venture capital. The winning team is awarded a full year of support by its ARCH Venture Partners’ business incubator and $25,000. For students with entrepreneurial aspirations, this challenge and training provided to participants during the competition is a true Booth differentiator.
Historically, Booth had developed a reputation as a school where students weren’t as involved on campus, partially because it had to compete with all that the city of Chicago has to offer. It’s worked hard to address this, by not only offering more on-campus opportunities, but by trying to attract students who will get involved. Demonstrating that you are such a candidate – and perhaps even showing how you were involved on campus as an undergrad or got involved in community service initiatives since college – will serve you well.
Finally, Booth has become more and more international as its brand has improved in recent years. It offers a truly unique student body, and applicants would be wise to give examples of times they’ve succeeded in working with diverse teams. And if you have career goals of working internationally, or in the field of global business, make that clear! Showing a passion for global business is a smart way to show a great fit for Booth.