Now that you have done your research, you may be seriously considering ESCP Business School as the next step towards reaching your professional and personal goals.
While this is definitely an exciting moment for you, there are still a few challenges ahead – like submitting a compelling application. In this blog, we want to share a few tips with you to ensure you submit a strong application and increase your chances of being invited to an interview.
Before we get to the tips, there are four simple steps we encourage you to take before starting your application.
Before you start your application
Step 1: Familiarise yourself with the programme
If you haven’t downloaded the brochure yet, now is the time! It will give you a better understanding of the curriculum, personalisation options, and all of the personal and professional development support the School offers to students. The brochure will also allow you to see if this is the right fit for your career plans, a topic you would need to comment on throughout your application.
If you are unsure whether this is the right programme for you, check out our official ESCP website. There, on the programme pages, you will be able to find a custom quiz! It takes just four minutes and offers feedback on your eligibility and profile fit.
Step 2: Check your closest application deadline
As you prepare to apply, make sure that you know the application deadlines.
At ESCP, we like to have several pre-set application deadlines throughout the year that can be found on our website in the Admissions tab of the programme or specialisation that you are interested in. Each deadline also has a corresponding interview date (usually within 3-4 weeks), so keep that in mind when picking a date that suits you best.
We treat all applications on a first-come, first-served basis, so make sure you apply as early as possible to ensure your place on the programme or the specialisation. This is particularly important as each campus has a set number of places available, so don’t wait until the last deadline to avoid disappointment!
Step 3: Book a 1-2-1 consultation
While our website and brochure is a great source of information, nothing beats getting a personalised advice specific to your case.
Make sure you book a consultation with our Recruiters before you apply – this will allow you to ask any questions about the programme unanswered by the brochure, re-confirm your eligibility, or get some useful advice on how the programme can fit into your career plans.
Step 4: Talk to ambassadors and alumni
Get in touch with our ambassadors or alumni to understand the first-hand experience of the programme. They will introduce you to the social side of the programme, get the insider’s perspective on what to expect, and hopefully help you decide whether this is THE programme for you.
Before you submit your application
Remember – ESCP takes a holistic approach when evaluating candidates. Our Admissions Jury looks at your previous academic performance, employment history, standardised management (if applicable) and English test scores, recommendations, international experience, extracurricular activities, and motivation for joining our programmes.
We are sure that most of these areas will give you the opportunity to shine on your application, but here are a few tips to make sure you make your application as bulletproof as possible.
#1 Be authentic
We cannot stress enough that we want to see who YOU are beyond your academic record or prestigious internships. There is not one set profile that everyone needs to strive for, so don’t try to pretend to be anyone but yourself.
Take time to think about how your past experiences – whether academic, professional or personal – have really shaped you as a person. Think about what values you have and how a management degree like ours fits with your value system and your life plans.
Having this deep understanding of yourself whilst answering application questions will make it easier to show what makes you unique and help ESCP see exactly how you stand out from the competition.
#2 Define your professional and personal goals
Building upon the first point, an ESCP admissions jury wants to know more about you than just your CV. When completing your application, think about what you want from your career. Why do you want to do a multi-campus programme like ours?
Having a clear idea about where you see a challenge in reaching your ideal career – and how ESCP and the programme to which you are applying will help you overcome that challenge – is something that you need to be prepared to talk about.
When defining your personal goals, think big. Think about what you would like to achieve whilst on the programme, what missing skills you want to gain and how those translate into your overall plan after your master’s.
If you are able to answer those questions and talk about these goals – first, great news! This means that doing a master’s degree is indeed the right step for you and your career! Secondly, this will give the admissions panel a more holistic and well-rounded sense of who you are, and if you and ESCP are the right match for each other.
#3 Personalise your CV
The fact that you need to submit your CV as part of the admissions process should not be a surprise to you. All candidates need to submit a CV that clearly demonstrates what have you been doing academically and professionally, as well as your key skills and competencies, to make a compelling argument as to why you should be offered a place on the programme.
When sending us your CV, try to be clear and concise about your experience; a few bullet points highlighting your key responsibilities for each experience is more than enough. Make sure you also personalise your profile summary and highlight what are your goals are.
Furthermore, a CV is an excellent way of showing any language proficiencies, extracurricular activities you are passionate about, and any significant volunteering experience that you have had. All of these may make a crucial difference when it comes to candidate selection by our Admissions Jury.
#4 Don’t underestimate the application essays
As you might have already seen, ESCP asks all candidates to write a number of short essays reflecting on their past experiences. When writing these essays, be mindful of the word limit. Focusing on the depth of your content is more important than the breadth.
We hope this goes without saying, but don’t just copy and paste text from other applications! Think of this as plagiarism, which is frowned upon by higher education institutions! It is better to take your answers to similar questions and link them back to what you know about the School and the programme.
You should also submit a motivation letter. This is your chance to elaborate on experiences you mention in your CV, especially your core skills and strengths. This is also a good place to summarise your career aspirations and what makes you stand out as a candidate, so don’t be shy in showing your personality and values. Don’t worry if it means repeating some of the content your put in your application answers. Once again, see point 1 – Be Authentic.
#5 Complete a GMAT or GRE
Lastly, if you are applying to our Master in Management or Master in Finance, as part of the admissions requirements, ESCP asks all candidates to complete some form of standardised test. While there are several options available, GMAT or GRE are the most preferable.
- GRE (Graduate Record Examinations) measures the verbal, quantitative and analytical skills that have been obtained during your time at university.
- GMAT (Graduate Management Admissions Test) is a computer-adaptive test intended to assess analytical, writing, quantitative, verbal and reading skills for admissions programmes.
For those who are unable to do these exams, ESCP also offers a timed, in-house aptitude exam where we test your verbal and numeric skills. This exam is free, and it is offered to all students who wish to attend ESCP.
A free test sounds great, right? But here are at least three reasons why you should still consider doing a GMAT or GRE.
1. Think about what it says about you as a candidate. Doing an industry-standard test shows that you are serious about taking your career to the next level. It shows commitment and how dedicated you are to your decision to join a management degree.
2. Think about what you are planning to do after graduation. Many Consulting and Banking & Finance companies require applicants to have these standardised tests as part of their recruitment process. If you are considering progressing your career in these industries, a standardised test will be an investment worth your while!
3. If you are considering our double degrees, sadly our internal test won’t be validated anywhere outside of ESCP. This means you might still be required to take the standardised test, which will be more difficult to prepare for while you are in a full-time degree.
Still reading? If you lasted long enough to reach this, you should now be ready to apply to ESCP! We strongly believe that following these simple tips should make your application as strong as it can be.