Tips for Tackling Tuck’s 2019-2020 Essay Prompts

For the 2019-2020 application for the Tuck School of Business MBA program, some things have changed and some haven’t. What’s the same? Tuck has maintained their purposeful admissions criteria: smart, accomplished, aware, and nice. What’s changed? Essays. Tuck has done away with the short-answer question section of the application. They also replaced last year’s two 500-word essays with three 300-word essays, two of which are brand new.

Successful Tuck applicants connect the essays to the admissions criteria. The trick? Use the essays to demonstrate that you are aware and nice. Keep reading for more of Status Admission’s essay advice for Tuck.

Question 1: Tuck students can articulate how the distinctive Tuck MBA will advance their aspirations. Why are you pursuing an MBA and why Tuck?

With this question, Tuck is giving you more space than last year to explain your reasons for choosing Tuck. Tuck admissions, famously transparent, has provided insight into what they’re looking for here. They want to see half the essay devoted to why you are pursuing an MBA and the other half to why specifically you’re pursuing your MBA at Tuck. Use this essay to demonstrate your awareness to how the Tuck MBA program will help you achieve your goals and why it’s the right program for you personally.

Question 2: Tuck students recognize how their individuality adds to the fabric of Tuck. Tell us who you are.

This question is similar to last year’s except that the part of the question that asked, “and what you will contribute” has been dropped. This means that Tuck wants less of a list of the clubs you’ll join at Tuck and more about what experience, personality traits, and interests you would bring to the Tuck classroom. Again, an opportunity to demonstrate that you’re aware, that you know yourself and have considered how you would fit into the Tuck community. Implied here is that you’ve done research about what makes Tuck distinct.

Question 3: Tuck students invest generously in one another’s success even when it is not convenient or easy. Share an example of how you helped someone else succeed.

This essay maps directly the admissions criteria of nice. The change in the question from last year to this year gives you a huge clue of what successful examples will include. Tuck has added “even when it is not convenient or easy.” This means Tuck is especially valuing stories where you had to overcome challenging circumstances, perhaps even fail and learn from that failure, in order to help someone else. With this approach, Tuck is trying to understand your character.

See How to get into Tuck for additional guidance about the program.