Cornell Short Answer

A statement of your goals will begin a conversation that will last throughout the admissions process and guide your steps during the MBA program and experience. To the best of your understanding today, please share your short and long term goals by completing the following sentences and answering the enclosed short answer question (350 words maximum):

Immediately post-MBA, my goal is to work as a(n) ____[Role]____ at ___[Company]___within___[Industry]___.

Targeted Job Role:

Target Job Company:


 In 5 – 10 years post-MBA, my goal is to work as a(n) ____[Role]____ at ___[Company]___within___[Industry]___.

Targeted Job Role:

Target Job Company:


How has your experience prepared and encouraged you to pursue these goals?

Simply fill these blanks for the first section of the prompt. For example – 

  • Short Term Goal: Immediately post-MBA my goal is to work as a Management Consultant at BCG 
  • Long Term Goal: In 5-10 years post-MBA my goal is to work as the senior partner/Director at an MNC

You can briefly explain how your former experiences have led you to your goals once you’ve selected your industry, company, and function in the short and long term. Then consider the crucial times in your work and how they prepared you for the next step or aided you in realizing your dreams.

This is an opportunity to demonstrate one’s abilities while also showing the need for an MBA. You don’t have to go over every role you’ve taken since graduation, just the ones that have had the most impact on preparing you for your future. If you have changed careers, you might talk about transferrable talents or go deeper into what piqued your interest and passion for your new path. 

Cornell Essay 1: Impact Essay

At Cornell, our students and alumni share a desire to positively impact the organizations and communities they serve. Taking into consideration your background, how do you intend to make a meaningful impact on an elite MBA community? (350 words maximum)

It is suggested that the applicant interacts with Cornell students. One can use the ‘community search tool’ or make a personal connection to ask friends, relatives, and coworkers whether they know anyone who is currently or will be a part of the Johnson community.

Based on the interactions, applicants may want to start by considering one or two aspects of the Johnson community with which they have the most affinity, as well as which are already obvious in their current activities and accomplishments.

Consider programs, extracurricular activities, and the informal ways in which you may engage. Johnson maintains professional clubs for every potential job path and offers clubs for interests ranging from reading to tennis.

Those formal clubs, as well as connecting in a classroom or at a party, may be methods for you to meet people at Johnson. For a successful Cornell MBA application, you must demonstrate that you are familiar with the institution. You should back up your story with proof from your previous experiences once you’ve identified ways to contribute to Johnson’s campus life.

Cornell Optional Essay (Required for Reapplicants)

You may use this essay to call attention to items needing clarification and to add additional details to any aspects of your application that do not accurately reflect your potential for success at Johnson (350 words maximum). 

If you are reapplying for admission, please use this essay to indicate how you have strengthened your application and candidacy since the last time you applied for admission. Please also review our Application Guide for additional information about reapplying (350 words maximum).

This optional essay should be used by first-time candidates to address any potential liabilities in their application. Without becoming defensive or making excuses, such dialogues should be direct and to the point, providing an explanation and referring to mitigating variables.

Meanwhile, reapplicants should include details on how they spent the previous year, emphasizing improved quantitative records, new professional abilities and responsibilities, progress toward their long-term career goals, and/or increased community involvement.

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