Georgetown University - McDonough

Essay Questions for 2020-2021 / Class of 2023

Below are the application deadlines and essay questions for McDonough School of Business' MBA program.  

                              Application Deadline       Decision Notification

Round 1                September 28, 2020        December 11, 2020

Round 2                January 6, 2021                 March 18, 2021

Round 3                March 29, 2021                 May 5, 2021

Round 4                April 26, 2021                   May 27, 2021

Please select one of the following three essays to complete in 500 words or less and include the essay prompt and your first/last name at the top of your submission.


Essay Option One – Principled Leadership: Georgetown McDonough places a strong emphasis on principled leadership, providing both curricular and co-curricular opportunities to strengthen your leadership skills. Describe a time when you’ve led a team in a professional environment to implement a new idea or process. What leadership characteristics did you utilize? What could you have done to be more effective? And most importantly, what skills will you be able to bring to the teams you lead at McDonough?

‚ÄčEssay Option Two – Hoyas Helping Hoyas:  Georgetown McDonough embodies the ethos that people and organizations can and should contribute to the greater good. The admissions committee would like to better understand how you’ve demonstrated these values during uniquely challenging times. Describe a time where you’ve put the needs of others ahead of your own or ahead of the bottom line. We look forward to learning more about the challenge you faced, what unique characteristics you brought to that scenario, and what you learned from it.

Essay Option Three – Personal Brand: Think of a business leader or role model you admire or aspire to be. What are the defining characteristics of his or her personal brand that you see in yourself? Give an example of how you have been able to emulate these characteristics in your professional career and how your personal brand will enrich the McDonough community.


Video Essay: What makes you unique? In a one-minute video, describe the most compelling aspects of yourself that you believe make you unique from other MBA candidates. (Hint: one minute goes fast! We already have your resume and goals – share something new!) Use this video as an opportunity to bring life to your application. For more instructions, view our Video Essay Guide.

You may use your phone, computer, or other means to record the video, but please ensure all audio and visual components are clear. We recommend a well-lit room and minimal noise distraction.

Upload your video to an accessible website (such as YouTube, Vimeo, Youku, or Tudou), and submit the direct video URL into your online application.

Please note that all videos must remain active and accessible to the admissions committee online for a minimum of five years for record retention purposes.

For your privacy: Do not include your name in the title of your video. You may submit “unlisted” videos via YouTube or password protected videos through Vimeo. If using a password, please include immediately after your link in the text box below. [Ex: www.youtube.com/123, password: Hoyas] 


Optional Essay: Please provide any information you would like to add to your application that you have not otherwise included. (500 words or fewer)


Re-Applicant Essay: Required for re-applicants. How have you strengthened your candidacy since your last application? We are particularly interested in hearing about how you have grown professionally and personally. (500 words or fewer)

Visit the Georgetown McDonough admissions website for more application information. Photo by Ron Cogswell.