Darden Interview Preparation & Few Userful resources

After tasting the 1st moment of success this Monday for being admitted to Tepper and being selected as Forte Fellow, its time to get more enthusiastic about the MBA application journey and my next important milestone is the Darden Admissions Interview which is scheduled on January 7th. It will be a telephonic interview and I don't know who my interviewer is. I have read that Darden conducts blind interviews where the interviewer knows nothing about the applicant and has no previous access to applicant's applications.

I have always felt a great fit for Darden. The Darden admission reception and brainstorming/writing/rewriting the Darden essays were all great experiences. Now that Darden has embraced my thoughts in the form of my essays and extended interview invite, I hope I can articulate my fit with Darden and project my candidacy the right way in the interview so that I can get accepted at Darden.

I feel the key to succeed in interview is to clearly understand the natuhre of the interview and its a bonus to know the interviewer. But we should never over do the latter part to the extent of pestering our interviewer or scaring him/her away with a sense of over enthusiasm. But it definitely helps to have a clear idea about how the interview is going to happen. One major resource that has been helpful in my interview preparation is the "UVA DARDEN SCHOOL OF BUSINESS: CLEAR ADMIT INTERVIEW GUIDE"

what I liked about this i/v guide

This I/V guide is a well researched, extensive guide to applicants. ClearAdmit has compiled many relevant data points regarding the interview and compiled it in a very readable way in this guide. Applicants can gain all the relevant information at one place through this guide. My specific takeaways from this guide which will also help fellow applicants are

  • Darden conducts blind interviews where the interviewer is either an adcom, trained second year student (for on-campus interviews) or Alumni (for international interviews).
    I would like to add here that as in my case, Darden also conducts telephonic interviews when alumni is not available in the applicant region. And blind interview gives you the freedom to reiterate your skills/achievements/aspirations that you have already expressed in you essays without the risk of sounding repetitive to the interviewer.

  • Darden Interviews are by-invitation-only and every applicant is interviewed prior to getting accepted. So interviews are an essential part of the admission process and hence to be dealt with meticulously

  • The interview typically lasts for 30 - 45 minutes but might stretch upto 1 hour when alumni is involved so its important to be flexible and prepared. Darden is famous for asking just one question in its interview which is "Tell me your story from cradle to chair". So be ready to present your life story in a way which makes sense in a MBA interview.
    My idea is to touch all the important milestones of life and articulate the reasons for my choices in life. Why I chose a particular college, company, career path, community activity and why it makes sense to my overall career vision.

  • Guide also has first hand interview experiences from past applicants and also a set of expected questions.
    I have found that the Clear Admit wiki page http://www.clearadmit.com/wiki/index.php?title=DardenInterview and http://www.accepted.com/mba/InterviewFeedback.aspx  contain useful i/v feedback from previous i/vs.

  • For those going on campus for interview, this guide gives all information needed to reach, visit, stay and interview at Darden. So US applicants watch out for this section. 
Things I had wished to see in this guide

I am a international applicant who won't be doing a on campus interview but a telephonic interview. So it would be a real value addition to this book if it has a dedicated section for "remote interviews" like telephonic and skype interviews.
And the book should provide links to the Darden Interview page on Clear Admit Wiki to help the readers. This will give some extra resources to the readers and at the same time readers will be encouraged to share their interview experience with the world through this wiki. Other than these I feel this guide can be really useful to applicants preparing for their Darden interview. The last section - "General Interview guide" can help you out in any MBA interview not only Darden.
I am also planning to talk to current students about the remote interviews to get some sense about how it usually goes. So that's about my Darden Interview Prep. All the best to fella applicants who are getting R1 decisions or submitting R2 apps. Happy holidays and a Merry Christmas !

P.S - Thanks ClearAdmit for providing me with a copy of "UVA DARDEN SCHOOL OF BUSINESS: CLEAR ADMIT INTERVIEW GUIDE.  You can check out more about the available clear admit i/v guides here


Katy said...


I read this post 2 times. It is very useful.

Pls try to keep posting.

Let me show other source that may be good for community.

Source: Interview preparation

Best regards

Dinesh Shukla said...


Post a Comment