Yale University is one of the most prestigious schools one can attend. Yale was founded in 1701, making it the third-oldest institution of higher education in the United States. Located in the scenic coastal city of New Haven, Connecticut, Yale’s central campus covers a sprawling 260 acres of land.
Yale’s expansive campus is the home of historic and famous buildings, including the Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library, the Peabody Museum of Natural History, and the Sterling Memorial Library. Pursuing your MBA at the Yale School of Management will allow you to experience this historic and picturesque campus.
Yale School of Management is one of the 14 schools making up the university and was founded in 1971. In 1999, Yale School of Management began offering its MBA program and began offering an Executive MBA program in 2005. The Yale School of Management was recently ranked as one of the top 5 most prestigious programs globally, making the program greatly sought by applicants.
Assistant Dean for Admissions Bruce Delmonico once said that “Yale SOM students are not cynical. They want to make a difference, and they feel that doing so is something worth aspiring to. This core quality shapes the culture and community here at a deep level. And to me, it is a large part of what makes the school such an inspiring place to be.”
If you feel that you are an ideal candidate, this guide will provide you with the tools and information you need to get into Yale’s School of Management.
Overall, Yale SOM’s goal is to facilitate positive change in various industries and sectors, whether it be at the public, private, or non-profit levels.
Recently Yale School of Management was ranked as one of the top MBA programs globally, exemplifying it as a very prestigious institution. Among schools in the U.S., Yale School of Management was ranked second in The Financial Times’ annual ranking of 100 full-time MBA programs.
Yale SOM MBA programs are designed to prepare students for leadership roles. Yale SOM helps to prepare students for leadership on four levels, increasingly broader in scope: individual, team, organization, and global and society.
At the individual level, students will develop their skills, identify their strengths and weaknesses, and develop insights in communication and persuasion. At the team level, students will learn to build great teams and understand the value of diverse skills and backgrounds.
Students will gain the context they need in order to see their organization’s bigger picture and to align goals within an organization at the organization-scale. Students will need to understand global challenges that require thinking and change that spans industries, sectors, and regions at the global and societal level.
Yale School of Management offers two different MBA programs: a full-time MBA program and an MBA for Executives. The full-time MBA program is completed in two years, where the first year is dedicated to the core curriculum, and the second year is tailored to you based on your chosen electives.
The first-year core courses include classes devoted to management, accounting, economics, negotiation, innovation, power and politics, and many other courses to lay the foundation of your MBA. The second-year curriculum electives expand students’ knowledge across disciplines, including management, art, sociology, environmental studies, and more.
Yale School of Management prides itself on preparing its students for diverse real-world experiences. As part of the MBA curriculum, students must fulfill the Global Studies requirement by choosing at least one of the following:
International experience: This course is carried out as a case study in learning about business complexities from a leader’s perspective. Beginning with a half-semester of classroom time, students will go on a 10-day trip to visit companies and meet political leaders in the world’s business capitals.
Global Network Weeks: Students will have the opportunity to travel to one of 30 schools in the Global Network for a course in a specific area of specialization.
Global Network Courses: These are virtual courses that allow students to work with Global Network schools around the globe.
Global Social Entrepreneurship Courses: There are two of these courses that allow students to travel abroad for an entrepreneurial consulting experience. These courses connect students with social entrepreneurs in a developing country and collaborate on a specific management challenge.
Exchange Programs: Students may choose to spend a semester or quarter abroad at a top business school, including The London School of Economics and Political Science, HEC Paris, IESE Business School, Barcelona, National University of Singapore Business School, and Tsinghua University School of Economics and Management, Beijing. Students may also choose to propose spending their time overseas at a different school in the Global Network.
Yale School of Management’s EMBA program “combines the rigor of our integrated core curriculum and leadership development program with advanced study in a chosen area at the nexus of business and society: asset management, healthcare, or sustainability.” The program is 22 months in length completed in Friday/Saturday sessions on alternating weekends at Yale’s campus.
Level of Competition
Yale School of Management’s prestige and reputation mean a significant amount of competition for a seat in its full-time MBA program. Recent data on Yale SOM’s acceptance rate shows that around 25 to 30 percent of applicants are accepted into the program.
Class sizes are often relatively small, and data shows that in the latest cycle, 350 students were enrolled out of the 3453 applications and 1027 admitted.
Although acceptance rates can seem intimidating, it's essential not to get caught up in the statistics. Yale School of Management reviews applications holistically and is interested in the impacts students have made in their personal and professional lives and how they plan to lead and collaborate while completing their MBA.
The admissions committee knows that what makes an applicant stand out will be different for each person, so “the key is therefore to remain your true self throughout the process, because what the Admissions Committee is looking to learn about in your application is…you!” If you feel you have a strong foundation of personal and professional skills, this could be your time to apply to Yale SOM.
Yale School of Management’s class profile showcases the diversity in their MBA program. The most recent class profile is as follows:
350 total enrolment
39 % women
40% international passport holders
10% first generation college students
13% joint degree students
4.5 years average work experience
11% underrepresented students of color (% of total class)
32% students of color (% of total class)
Test Scores and GPA
720 median GMAT, middle 80% GMAT range of 680 - 760
Median GRE Quantitative and Verbal scores of 164, middle 80% of 159 - 170 and 158- 170, respectively
35% of accepted students applied with GRE scores
Median undergraduate GPA of 3.65
Citizenship By Region (46 Countries Represented)
Asia Pacific: 17.4%
Mexico, Caribbean, and Latin America.: 4.3%
Africa & Middle East: 2.6%
North America: 73.1%
Financial services: 22.8%
Media or entertainment: 6.9%
Requirements and How to Apply
Now that you’ve decided you want to attend Yale School of Management, you must craft a stellar application detailing your personal and professional experiences. You don’t have to do it alone. There are many services that can help.
The competition for a seat at Yale SOM is fierce, but you will have the best chances of acceptance with a well-crafted application. The following are the requirements you will need to meet in your online application to Yale School of Management.
Personal information section (optional)
Academic record - transcripts from all universities and colleges attended, and the competition of a four-year bachelor’s degree or international equivalent
Valid GMAT, GRE scores
Two professional recommendations
Career goals (short answer)
Application fee of $250
All questions in this section are truly optional. These questions are a way for the admissions committee to learn more about your background that may provide context for your choices and opportunities. If you would like to expand on any answer you provide in this section, you may do so by writing in the “optional information” section of the application.
Academic Record and GPA
Your academic transcripts and completed bachelor’s degree or international equivalent are requirements for Yale SOM. Yale SOM understands that there may be other contributing factors that influence a student’s undergraduate GPA. Kate Botelho, the Associate Director of Admissions, said that “As with your entire application, we are very interested in the story or the whole picture.
What was the progression? Did you have an opportunity to take courses outside of your major? Were you working a job in undergrad to pay for your education? There are so many other factors that weigh into this picture.” Applicants must understand that a lower GPA does not mean the end of their academic journey as applications are reviewed holistically.
GMAT or GRE Scores
Yale SOM accepts both GMAT and GRE scores in MBA applications. The GMAC (Graduate Management Admission Council) now allows you to share just one score in your test history.
Still, applicants are encouraged to share their entire test history with the admissions committee. This disclosure can show the admissions committee your commitment to the test and subsections you may have scored higher on in the past. Only the highest score will be used to evaluate your candidacy.
Yale SOM states that they are genuinely impartial to GMAT or GRE scores and will accept both without bias.
Amy Abood, Senior Associate Director of Admissions, said that “When we say we have no preference between the GMAT and GRE, we really mean it. Take whatever exam you feel most comfortable with.”
However, she does recommend being strategic with what test you complete; for example, applicants hoping to apply to a joint program as well may want to take the GRE to apply to both programs, whereas an applicant pursuing a career in consulting or investment banking should generally take the GMAT.
If you still need to take a GMAT or GRE test or aim for a higher score, you will need to have a valid score before applying to Yale SOM.
Letters of Recommendation
Letters of recommendation are a crucial part of your application, as you ideally have your present or past employers vouch for your experience and exceptional work ethic. Yale SOM asks that you provide two letters of recommendation, preferably from people you have worked with closely. Jourdan Burks, Assistant Director of Community and Inclusion, said “Try not to ‘title chase.’
Choose someone who actually knows you.” Choosing people you have a close professional relationship with to recommend will give the admissions committee a complete perspective.
Your resume should summarize your professional accomplishments in an easy-to-follow chronological way. Your relevant work experience, extracurricular activities, and volunteer work ground your application. Remember to keep your resume short and sweet - try to cap it at one to two pages. Remember to make it punchy, accessible, and easy to understand to make your resume shine.
Your application will have a short section where you can share your post-MBA plan. Communicating your career goals is a great way to show the admissions committee how you see an MBA at Yale SOM fitting into your career path and life.
Yale School of Management’s main essay question is “Describe the biggest commitment you have ever made.” This topic is intentionally broad, and open-ended business school questions are not meant to be easy. The admissions committee is looking for an honest answer about something meaningful to you. Commitments students write about can be personal, specific, or expansive on a range of many topics.
The Behavioral Assessment is a relatively new online tool that “measures a set of inter-and intrapersonal competencies that are associated with success in business school.” There is absolutely no prior preparation required for this assessment, and it can be completed in about 20 to 25 minutes.
The test is adaptive and uses a forced-choice format of 120 statements that best matches the candidates' behavior. The behavioral assessment provides the admissions committee with another data point to enroll a diverse group of students from different backgrounds.
After you have paid the fee and submitted the rest of your application, you will receive access to video questions. Candidates will receive three randomized questions similar to typical interview questions.
The first two questions will allow you to have 20 seconds to gather your thoughts and 60 seconds to respond, and the last question will give you 30 seconds to prepare and 90 seconds to answer. There are no trick questions here; Yale SOM is not trying to stump you or throw you off.
After you complete your application, the admissions committee will notify you if you are invited to come to campus for a 30-minute interview or participate in a virtual interview if a campus visit isn’t possible.
Amy Abood said that “By the time you’ve been invited to interview, we’ve evaluated the ‘hard’ aspects of your application—academic record, work experience, career interests, etc.—and we think you could succeed in the Yale SOM academic environment. The interview stage is about assessing fit in both directions.”
Business school interviews are an excellent way for the candidate and admissions committee to assess one another mutually. Be sure to differentiate yourself, stand out, and be authentic!
Top Tips to Get Into Yale School of Management
Since the competition level for Yale School of Management is relatively high, you will want to do whatever you can to maximize your chances of acceptance. In addition to meeting all program requirements, our top tips can help you secure your seat at Yale School of Management.
Both of your letters of recommendation should be professional. Ideally, Yale School of Management would prefer that one of these letters be from your current supervisor. It can be helpful to sit down with your supervisor and talk to them about your desire to pursue an MBA.
Do not send those writing your recommendation letters any of the written material you want to be incorporated into your recommendations. If the voice of your recommendation letters sounds the same as your writing, it can raise red flags to the admissions committee. Your letters of recommendation should be the honest thoughts of the people providing them.
Writing any business school essay can be an intimidating task. Yale School of Management’s essay is an intentionally tricky open-ended question. Writing a great essay requires you to self-reflect, brainstorm your idea, and discuss your approach to the commitment.
Remember that though you are writing about the most significant commitment you’ve ever made, the specific actions you’ve taken over time to remain faithful to the commitment are what the admissions committee wants to see.
These questions require no preparation, and that can be nerve-wracking for those who aim to always be prepared. The best advice for these questions is not to stress yourself out too much and know that this application component is not necessarily a deal-breaker.
Try to familiarize yourself with the time limits on your answers and practice using Skype, as talking in front of a computer can feel awkward or unnatural for some people.
This sentiment may sound like cliché advice that your well-meaning parent or guardian shouted at you as you nervously walked into your first day of school, but it may be the best piece of advice to follow as you navigate the admissions process.
In all steps of the admissions process, you want to remain professional yet authentic. Being yourself takes courage and is a great way to stand out from the crowd; remember that there is no one quite like you.
1. Is there a minimum GMAT or GRE requirement?
No, there is no minimum GMAT or GRE requirement. It would help if you aimed to do the best you can no matter which test you complete, but know that Yale SOM accepts students with a range of scores. If you need a target in order to track your progress, refer to the class profile to get an idea of what is considered competitive.
2. How is the Behavioral Assessment used in the application? Are there any wrong answers?
Yale School of Management states that they are interested in “looking at non-cognitive abilities that can help [them] identify high-potential candidates, whose testing and prior academics may not otherwise suggest that they will perform well in the program.”
The behavioral assessment is another tool in the admissions process. There are no “wrong” answers as the test follows a forced-choice format. The behavioral assessment can be used for the admissions committee to take a chance on a candidate that may not have otherwise been accepted.
3. When should I complete the optional information section?
The optional information section is genuinely optional. If you would like to expand on something discussed in your application, please provide more information in this section. You may decide to discuss “unexplained gaps in work experience, choice of recommenders, academic performance, promotions or recognitions.” You can also choose to leave it blank.
4. How can I experience Yale firsthand to make sure the school is the right fit for me?
A campus visit is your best course of action to decide how well you will fit into Yale SOM. You can plan a visit to the campus online.
5. What do I need to do if I’m reapplying to Yale School of Management?
Re-applicants will need to submit an entirely new application. If you are reapplying within two years, you can choose to use the same GMAT or GRE score you first applied with if you wish, and you don’t have to resubmit transcripts.
If you are reapplying more than two years since your last application, you need to provide all the materials for an entirely new application. Yale SOM will check to see how you have improved your application since your last attempt, so be sure to provide meaningful updates to your candidacy.
6. How can I find scholarships to help me pay tuition?
All applicants are automatically considered for merit-based scholarships. Other scholarships may be available to candidates, and it's best to apply as early as you can.
7. How do my job prospects look post-MBA?
Yale SOM boasts a high number of students receiving and accepting job offers within three months of graduation. Recent data suggests that 90.2 percent of graduates receive a job offer three months post-grad, and 85.9 percent will accept a job within this timeframe.
Applying to Yale School of Management can appear to be a daunting process, but you can maximize your chance of acceptance with the right amount of preparation and knowledge. Remember to stay authentic during the admissions process and do your very best.
By putting together a stellar professional resume, a well-written essay, and providing great recommendation letters, you can boost your chances of claiming a seat at this prestigious school. You should keep your career and personal aspirations in mind as you apply and envision your future post-grad.
An MBA from the Yale School of Management can be the education you need to propel your life in a direction that allows you to grow and flourish continually. Using the top tips and advice provided in this article, you can manifest your dream of becoming a Yale graduate into reality.
About Inspira Futures
At Inspira Futures, our sole focus is to get you accepted at your dream business school. Our team of experts consists of former admission committee members and alums from Harvard Business School, Stanford GSB, and other M7 schools. Our goal is to help you write great essays, ace interviews, and win scholarships. Without any stress or hassle. Our clients have gone on to secure admits at the world's top business schools while also being winners of some of the most prestigious scholarships like Stanford Knight Hennessy, HBS Baker Scholars, and many others.