The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania is a world-renowned business school, and many aspiring entrepreneurs and future C-suite executives set their sights on Wharton for its rigorous analytical curriculum, impressive roster of professors, and vast network of well-placed MBA alumni. However, Wharton’s acceptance rate is only 19.23%, and its admissions process is highly rigorous, with its MBA Admissions Office showing an independent streak. Whereas many other MBA admissions officers have coalesced around the same questions for recommenders, Wharton’s admissions officers have created their own. And while every other top-ranked MBA program conducts one-on-one interviews, the Wharton Admissions Office has created a one-of-a-kind Team-Based Discussion (TBD). This is why if Wharton is your dream school, you should acquire as much information about the admissions process as possible before you apply.
If you have set your sights on the Wharton MBA program, mbaMission offers a depth of resources and services to help you on your journey.
The Wharton School Insider’s Guide
After consulting with Wharton MBA students, admissions committee members, and alumni about their Wharton experiences, we have prepared our Insider’s Guide to the Wharton School. We take an in-depth look at life as a Wharton student, highlighting how the school’s location, class size, curriculum, teaching methods, facilities, alumni involvement, and rankings all affect its culture and MBA experience. Then we discuss Wharton’s well-respected faculty and professional student clubs, revealing how they facilitate the careers of Wharton MBA students. Learn more about Wharton beyond its perennial strength in finance. For example, delve into its entrepreneurial offerings through its Venture Lab, hosted in the university’s new entrepreneurship center, Tangen Hall. Or discover more about opportunities to study internationally through the Wharton-INSEAD alliance, the Global Immersion Program, Global Modular Courses, and MBA Leadership Ventures expeditions. Finally, learn how Wharton dean Erika James is shaping the institution for the future, notably by making it the first MBA program to have more female than male students. The more you discover about the Wharton MBA, the more you will likely want to learn.
The Wharton Interview Guide
Have you ever been in a four-to-six-person group interview in which you had to present your own ideas and then critique—and be critiqued by—others? If you are fortunate enough to be invited for an interview at Wharton, you will have just such an experience because this is the nature of the Wharton Team-Based Discussion (TBD). Because of the unique aspects of the Wharton TBD, we strongly suggest reading our free Wharton Interview Guide. In this guide, we give you a deeper understanding of the TBD process, share insights from former mbaMission clients who have completed the TBD, and provide our tips for success. Further, while the Team-Based Discussion is the main component of the Wharton interview experience, our guide also offers insight into the brief one-on-one interview that follows the group discussion.
Wharton Essay Analysis, 2021–2022
Wharton admissions director Blair Mannix has crafted a pair of MBA essay prompts for the Wharton School that require you to think carefully about your reasons for attending the program, both as a consumer of an MBA education and as a contributor to an MBA community. In Wharton Essay 1, you must discuss what Wharton can do for you—how you can leverage the program’s resources to achieve your ambitious short- and long-term goals. Then, in Wharton Essay 2, you should focus on what you can bring to and do for Wharton—you will need to clearly articulate your anticipated contribution, referencing specific Wharton clubs, courses, and experiences in which you can have an impact.
Your greatest assets in crafting strong responses for both essays will be (1) a profound understanding of the school, its culture, and all it offers and (2) your ability to infuse your essays with a high level of detail. So be knowledgeable, be authentic, and be thorough, and you should be well positioned to submit compelling, effective essays.
In our analysis, we provide in-depth guidance on each of Wharton’s application essay questions:
- Essay 1: How do you plan to use the Wharton MBA program to help you achieve your future professional goals? You might consider your past experience, short and long-term goals, and resources available at Wharton. (500 words)
- Essay 2: Taking into consideration your background—personal, professional, and/or academic—how do you plan to make specific, meaningful contributions to the Wharton community? (400 words)
Click here to read our analysis
Wharton MBA Rankings
Wharton ranks among the top three MBA programs in the world in terms of its brand profile, while also enjoying a reputation for being the premier MBA-level finance program on the planet. Wharton typically places among the very top programs in the world’s most prestigious business school rankings—including what are generally accepted as the two most prominent ones, Bloomberg Businessweek and U.S. News & World Report. The 2020 Poets&Quants national ranking, however, placed Wharton at number three, one spot higher than the previous year, and Bloomberg Businessweek ranked Wharton in sixth place for 2020, unchanged from its 2019 position. In the most recent U.S. News & World Report survey (2022), Wharton was ranked second after being first for two years in a row. In addition, Wharton was included among the top 5 MBA programs in the country in the following U.S. News & World Report 2022 specialty rankings: finance (1); real estate (1); executive MBA (2); marketing (2); accounting (3); business analytics (3); management (4); entrepreneurship.
Wharton Deadlines (2021-2022)
September 8, 2021
Round 1 Decision
December 15, 2021
January 5, 2022
Round 2 Decision
March 23, 2022
March 30, 2022
Round 3 Decision
May 20, 2022