UC Irvine Merage Sample Essays and Recommendation Letters

Free Samples from Past Clients

UC Irvine Merage Application Essays & Questions 2023-24

Essays- A video essay and a written essay are required. The specific essay prompts can be found on the application essay questions are for the Master of Science in Business Analytics program

Essay 1 (Video Essay):

Applicants are required to provide a link to a 1-2 minute video as part of their application. In your video, please introduce yourself to the admissions committee and address the following question:

Please tell us about your personal background and introduce yourself to the admissions committee. How have your current professional or academic experiences led you to pursue an MSBA degree and how will the Merage School support your short-term and long-term career goals?

Most applicants use websites such as YouTube, Vimeo, Dropbox, or Google Drive to upload their video essays. On all these platforms, be sure to mark the video as “Unlisted” rather than “Private”. Unlisted means only people with the link will be able to see it. Click “Get Shareable Link” in your privacy settings and paste into the application.

Essay 2 (maximum 250 words): The Merage School prides itself on having an engaged community of students. Many MSBA students find that meeting other analytics minded individuals can be beneficial both professionally and personally and seek our student-led government, clubs, centers, and events as an integral part of the student experience. Based on your understanding of the UCI Merage culture, how would you contribute to our community? Consider activities or opportunities you would be excited about or would create for your classmates. If relevant, provide examples of how you were engaged as an undergraduate student. 

Essay 2 should be in .pdf format and no larger than 600KB

Essay 3 (Optional; maximum 250 words): This section should only be used to convey relevant information not addressed elsewhere in your application. This may include explanation of employment gaps, academic performance, supplemental coursework, etc. You are encouraged to use bullet points where appropriate. 

Optional Essay 3 should be in .pdf format and no larger than 600KB.

UC Irvine Merage Winning Sample Essays-1

Essay 1 (Video Essay)

Please tell us about your personal background and introduce yourself to the admissions committee. How have your current professional or academic experiences led you to pursue an MSBA degree and how will the Merage School support your short-term and long-term career goals?

[Video Transcript]

Hello, my name is xyz , and I am excited to be applying for the Master of Science in Business Analytics (MSBA) program at the University of California, Irvine Merage School. As I reflect on my journey so far, I am reminded of the numerous experiences that have shaped my passion for data-driven decision-making and my desire to leverage analytics to drive business growth.

Throughout my four years of experience in management consulting at ZS Associates, I have developed a strong foundation in data analytics, business operations, and managerial skills. My role as an Associate Consultant has allowed me to work on various projects that involve analyzing large datasets to inform business decisions. I have honed my analytical skills, including proficiency in SQL and Python, and have used these skills to design innovative solutions for clients.

One of my most memorable experiences was working on a project for a major pharmaceutical client. The client was dissatisfied with the existing user experience and wanted a more engaging solution to enhance their sales and marketing efforts. I collaborated with cross-functional teams to analyze the client’s data and identify key pain points and opportunities for improvement. Using SQL and Python, I developed a comprehensive data model that highlighted the client’s strengths and weaknesses and provided actionable insights for improvement.

This experience not only deepened my understanding of the importance of data analytics in business but also instilled in me a passion for using data to drive decision-making. I believe that the MSBA program at the Merage School will provide me with the ideal platform to further develop my skills in data analytics and to apply them in a real-world setting.

As I look to the future, I am excited about the opportunity to leverage my skills and experience to drive business growth and innovation. I am confident that the MSBA program at the Merage School will equip me with the knowledge and skills necessary to achieve my short-term and long-term career goals.

Essay 2 (maximum 250 words):

Based on your understanding of the UCI Merage culture, how would you contribute to our community? Consider activities or opportunities you would be excited about or would create for your classmates. If relevant, provide examples of how you were engaged as an undergraduate student. 

As I understand the UCI Merage culture, I believe that the school’s emphasis on community and engagement is a key aspect of the student experience. I am excited about the opportunity to contribute to this community and to be part of a group of analytics-minded individuals who share my passion for data-driven decision-making.

In terms of how I would contribute to the community, I would be excited about participating in student-led government, clubs, and centers. I believe that these opportunities would provide a platform for me to engage with my peers and to learn from their experiences and perspectives. I would also be interested in creating opportunities for my classmates to engage with each other and to share their knowledge and expertise.

As an undergraduate student, I was involved in various extracurricular activities that allowed me to engage with my peers and to develop my leadership skills. I believe that these experiences have prepared me well for the MSBA program at the Merage School and have given me the confidence to contribute to the community in a meaningful way.

Essay 3 (Optional; maximum 250 words)

This section should only be used to convey relevant information not addressed elsewhere in your application. This may include explanation of employment gaps, academic performance, supplemental coursework, etc.

I would like to take this opportunity to explain any extenuating circumstances that may have impacted my academic performance or professional experience. During my undergraduate studies, I faced a personal tragedy when my closest friend, Abhishek, passed away. This experience had a significant impact on my academic performance and my ability to focus on my studies. However, I was able to overcome this challenge and continue my studies with the support of my family and friends.

In terms of my professional experience, I have been fortunate to have had the opportunity to work on various projects that have allowed me to develop my analytical skills and apply them in a real-world setting. I believe that these experiences have prepared me well for the MSBA program at the Merage School and have given me the confidence to contribute to the community in a meaningful way.

I am excited about the opportunity to join the MSBA program at the Merage School and to be part of a community of analytics-minded individuals who share my passion for data-driven decision-making. I believe that the program will provide me with the ideal platform to further develop my skills in data analytics and to apply them in a real-world setting.

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UC Irvine Merage Recommendation Letters & Key Questions

Recommendation forms are sent electronically by email to your recommenders through our application system. Please allow enough time for your recommender to submit their letters by the stated round deadline.-Two (2) letters of Recommendation are required for all MBA and Masters programs.

Recommendations should be provided by employers, supervisors, professors, or others who are able to comment on your professional and educational goals and potential (no friends or relatives please).

Additionally, your recommenders may upload their own letter of recommendation which must be signed on letterhead (PDF or .doc format).

How the online process works:

Enter the name, email address and other required fields for each recommender. If you decide to remove a recommender, click the red “remove recommendations” link to remove that entry and then the blue “add recommendations” link to add a new one.

Important: Once you enter your recommender’s email address and the section is saved, the recommendation email with the link to access the response form will be sent to your registered recommender. Once the email is sent to your recommender, certain fields can no longer be updated.

When the recommender submits the response form online it will automatically be matched to your application.If a recommender does not receive the email with the link to the recommendation form, please ask them first to check their “clutter” or “junk mail” folders in their email system before contacting us for support. In addition, the email your recommender receives includes instructions for an offline option to complete the recommendation and return it to the school via email.

Once you submit your application, you will be able to send “remind” emails to your registered recommenders. This feature is only available after you submit your application.

MSBA Recommendation Letters
(Free Samples & successful Examples)

Professor - Recommendation letter Sample 1

Date: 23 September 2023

Admissions Committee
Ms in Business Analytics Program
UC Davis

Subject: “Recommendation Letter for Akhila Mohan”

Dear Members of the Admissions Committee,

I am pleased to write this letter of recommendation for my former student, Akhila Mohan, who is applying for the Master’s in Business Analytics program at UC Davis. As her professor at COMSATS, where she pursued her Bachelor of Business Administration degree, I had the privilege of observing her brilliant academic and professional journey, which is punctuated with outstanding achievements. I am thrilled to support her application, as she possesses a unique blend of skills and qualities that make her an outstanding candidate for this program.

Academic Excellence and Analytical Skills

During her time at COMSATS, Akhila’s commitment to academic excellence was evident as she consistently ranked in the top 1% of her class and achieved remarkable results across all campuses. Her dedication to her studies and her exceptional intellect were further reflected in the numerous merit scholarships and medals she secured. She was an active leader in class discussions, curious and engaged, and consistently provided insightful contributions to diverse topics.

Initiative and Practical Application

Akhila’s interest in studying economic disparity within socioeconomic groups in Pakistan led her to survey women in underserved areas in her community. Using her research, she developed and implemented a financial literacy program to improve the livelihoods of economically disenfranchised women by imparting crucial money management knowledge and skills to enable their financial autonomy. This project showcases her ability to apply theoretical concepts to real-world problems, a critical skill in business analytics.

Leadership and Multitasking Abilities

Throughout her academic tenure, Akhila demonstrated a remarkable ability to balance a multitude of responsibilities while excelling in every endeavor, both within and beyond the classroom. Her multitasking prowess is evident in her successful completion of five internships while maintaining exceptional grades, and notably her involvement with AIESEC, which showcased her dedication to global awareness for SDGs and cross-cultural exchange. Through her leadership in promoting student exchange programs, she facilitated transformative experiences for over 100 individuals through international exchanges and professional internships.


In summary, Akhila possesses a rare combination of academic brilliance, practical problem-solving skills, and leadership qualities. I am confident that she will excel in the Master’s in Business Analytics program at UC Davis and make significant contributions to both the program and the broader field. I highly recommend her as an exceptional candidate.


[Recommender’s Name]
[Recommender’s Title]
[Institution Name]


Admissions Committee,
XXX University,

Date: 21 December 2022

Subject: Letter of Recommendation for Pranav

I have known Pranav for over two years now. He was a student in my Entrepreneurship course as part of his Minor in Entrepreneurship and Management. As a student in my class, Pranav showed great skill in applying these concepts in practical in-class quizzes, his final group business pitch at the end of the course, and his professional activities at UBS. Pranav also achieved remarkable performance in my course, earning the highest grade possible of A+.

Pranav stood out to me during the final project for the course evaluation. As a major assessment, I assign a project for students to work in groups and pitch a viable, self-sustaining business idea. Pranav took the initiative to create a multicultural and diverse team with students from different countries and majors, successfully delivering a business pitch for a student-run laundry and cleaning business. The idea was unique, and he actively sought my advice and mentorship to make the team and project successful.

Another noteworthy aspect is the analytical research Pranav conducted before and after seeking my advice. He made a concerted effort to learn about diverse topics he had not previously encountered and was able to grasp different aspects of entrepreneurship, such as management and finance. This demonstrated his goal-oriented and detail-oriented abilities. The idea, data-oriented research, and financial analysis were impressive, synthesized and executed effectively on assigned tasks. Additionally, the real-world considerations regarding the execution of the pitch and the cohesive delivery from a team collaboration perspective were excellent.

I was so impressed with the project that I asked Pranav if I could include the pitch and presentation as teaching material for my course. I also offered him a Research Assistant position for the following summer, which he was unable to accept due to his graduation.

Given his analytical skills and collaborative approach, it was no surprise to me that Pranav was able to transition into finance directly from his undergraduate studies in engineering, securing a role in finance with UBS in their Investment Banking Operations in Hong Kong.

In terms of areas for improvement, I believe Pranav’s analytical nature and attention to detail can sometimes lead him to get caught up in minutiae, affecting his time management. In the group project, Pranav struggled with time management and was a week behind schedule because he gave equal attention to all the details of the presentation, losing track of the bigger picture. With my guidance, he was able to get back on track and submitted the project by the deadline. However, I believe Pranav needs to develop a better overall view of projects to improve his time management.

Pranav is just beginning his financial career, but he already possesses analytical skills and an understanding of management, teamwork, and other organizational elements comparable to other top students I have recommended to Master’s programs. Pranav’s progress at CityU and UBS clearly demonstrates his intellect and dedication. He is capable and has a keen intellectual capacity for analytical thinking. I believe Pranav is on track to build a successful career that blends his quantitative inclinations with his qualitative skills, inspiring those he will lead and work with.

To conclude, I strongly recommend Pranav, and I would be happy to discuss his candidacy further if you have additional questions.




XX university

Here is a quick PDF of a sample recommendation our client submitted for a successful admit. 

Ut Austin Recommendation Letter Page 0001 - MSBA LOR Sample - Template - Ameerkhatri.com

How long and in what capacity have you known the candidate?

I have known Pranav for roughly one and a half years. I was his mentor during his internship with UBS. Although he completed his internship and has moved on, we still continue to keep in touch to exchange different business ideas.

What do you think about the candidate’s professional performance and potential (including any room for improvement)?

When Pranav started his internship with UBS, he was one of the most proactive interns. Since he didn’t have a finance background, he showed keen interest in learning and came up the curve very quickly. 

The team assigned him Automation and Efficiency-related projects, and while working in the automation team he managed to stand out from other interns by providing solutions that were slightly outside of the box and impressed everyone on the team. 

For instance, he met with various team leads to understand their automation requirements and one team lead expressed her frustration with the manual risk report that used to take 10-12 hours every quarter. After the meeting, Pranav took the proactive step of helping automate this report for the team. The specific process automation that he implemented was for risk reports for the risk team. The team had a manual time consuming process in which they had to refer to multiple Excel sheets to create their quarterly risk report. Pranav understood and mapped the entire process before using an automation tool to automate it. This led to a time reduction of 90 percent in the compilation of the report. The automation process he designed was ingenious; no one had thought of using it before, and that is why I think everyone was impressed with his out-of-the-box thinking. 

Apart from that, another one of his biggest strengths is his willingness to take initiative. 

To highlight another instance, he noticed the dashboards in Operations and wider UBS were on Tableau, he took the initiative to compare Tableau and PowerBi and pitched shifting the employee statistics dashboard to PowerBi. The management team agreed and Pranav successfully created an Employee demographic dashboard on PowerBi. This led to cost savings for the department as UBS was already paying for PowerBi. He also took even more initiative, helping others in his team and UBS get certified on PowerBi and documented his knowledge for everyone before he left his internship.

On the flip side, when it comes to areas of improvement, I would also say this proactiveness and eagerness sometimes led to difficult situations. Like other fresh hires, he was also trying to prove himself in the initial months of his tenure with the team. However, this often meant that he would try to manage and solve things on his own instead of seeking help. This led to delays and situations becoming critical.

Pranav was tasked with getting certified on Automation Anywhere, another automation tool used by the team. He was unable to crack the certification according to the timeline assigned to him and was delayed by a month in getting certified. He tried to manage and solve the situation but was unable to do so without help from his team, this delay led to an increased workload for the rest of the team and longer hours as work had been earmarked for Pranav to do as soon as he would be finished with the certification. 

Overall, I would say that Pranav has great potential; he is not afraid to take the initiative and present his ideas.

Manager – UBS, Hong Kong Offices

When it comes to writing great letter of recommendation, here are a few do’s and don’ts tailored for candidates applying to a Master’s in Business Analytics program:


1. Choose Relevant Recommenders:
Do: select recommenders who can provide detailed and specific examples of your technical and analytical skills. Ideally, these should be people who have directly supervised your work in relevant roles, such as data analysis, business intelligence, or any analytics-related projects.
Example: Your current or previous supervisors, project managers, or clients who have seen your analytical skills in action and can speak to your ability to handle complex data sets and derive meaningful insights.

2. Provide Context and Achievements:
Do: give your recommenders a comprehensive list of your accomplishments and the context in which you achieved them. Highlight your contributions to significant projects, especially those involving data analysis, statistical modeling, or the implementation of analytics solutions.
Example: Create a list detailing how your analysis led to actionable business decisions, cost savings, or process improvements. Share this list with your recommenders to help them write a more impactful letter.

3. Meet and Discuss Your Goals:
Do: meet with your recommenders to discuss your career goals, reasons for pursuing a Master’s in Business Analytics, and why you have chosen specific programs. This helps them tailor their letters to align with your aspirations and the program’s focus.
Example: Explain how the program’s curriculum, faculty, and resources will help you achieve your career goals in data science or business analytics.

4. Ensure Specific Examples:
Do: encourage your recommenders to include specific anecdotes that highlight your skills and accomplishments. Real-life examples add weight and credibility to your recommendation.
Example: Ask them to describe a particular project where you used your analytical skills to solve a complex problem, detailing your approach, tools used, and the impact of your work.

5. Set Early Deadlines:
Do: set early personal deadlines for your recommenders to ensure they complete the letters well before the application deadlines. This gives you a buffer period to follow up if needed.
Example: If your application is due on January 1st, ask your recommenders to submit their letters by December 1st to avoid last-minute issues.


1. Avoid High-Ranking but Unfamiliar Recommenders:
Don’t: choose recommenders based solely on their title or status if they are not familiar with your work. Letters from high-ranking individuals who cannot provide detailed and personal insights will be less effective.
Example: Avoid asking a company CEO or a prominent professor you met briefly unless they have worked closely with you and can provide specific examples of your skills and achievements.

2. Don’t Write the Letter Yourself:
Don’t: write the recommendation letter yourself, even if a recommender offers to sign it. Admissions committees can detect self-written letters, which can harm your credibility.
Example: If a recommender suggests this, politely decline and offer to provide them with all the necessary information to write the letter themselves.

3. Avoid Generic Content:
Don’t: let your recommenders submit generic letters that could apply to anyone. Generic praise without specific examples of your work and skills will not make your application stand out.
Example: Ensure your recommenders avoid statements like “X is a great team player” without context or evidence supporting such claims.

4. Don’t Overlook the Instructions:
Don’t: ignore the specific instructions and questions provided by each business school. Different programs might have different requirements for recommendation letters.
Example: Make sure your recommenders address each question posed by the school’s recommendation form and follow any formatting or submission guidelines provided.

5. Avoid Subordinates as Recommenders:
Don’t: ask subordinates to write your recommendation letters. Their perspective might not carry the same weight and could be seen as less objective.
Example: Recommendations should come from individuals in a supervisory or client role who can objectively evaluate your performance and potential.

These tailored do’s and don’ts will help ensure that your recommendation letters are strong, relevant, and supportive of your application to a Master’s in Business Analytics program.

Recommendation letter template specifically tailored for candidates applying to a Master’s in Business Analytics program, including different structuring and clear instructions for highlighting relevant skills:

Admissions Committee
[Business Analytics Program Name]
[University Name]
[University Address]
[City, State, ZIP Code]


Dear Members of the Admissions Committee,

It is my pleasure to recommend [Candidate’s Name] for the [Master’s in Business Analytics program] at [University Name]. I have had the privilege of working with [Candidate’s Name] at [Company Name] for [duration], where I serve as [Recommender’s Title]. In this time, I have observed [his/her/their] exceptional analytical skills and unwavering commitment to data-driven decision-making.

Analytical Skills and Achievements

One of [Candidate’s Name]’s standout projects was [specific project/task]. During this project, [he/she/they] [specific action taken], resulting in [quantifiable result/outcome]. This project clearly demonstrated [his/her/their] expertise in [relevant skills, e.g., data analysis, statistical modeling, predictive analytics].

In another significant endeavor, [Candidate’s Name] was responsible for [another specific project/task]. [He/She/They] utilized [specific tools or methodologies, e.g., Python, R, machine learning algorithms] to [specific action taken], which led to [quantifiable result/outcome]. This work highlights [his/her/their] ability to leverage complex datasets to drive strategic business decisions.

Problem-Solving and Innovation

[Candidate’s Name] is particularly adept at identifying business problems and formulating innovative solutions. For example, during [specific challenge], [he/she/they] [specific action taken], which significantly improved [specific metric or outcome]. [His/Her/Their] problem-solving skills and innovative approach are invaluable assets in the field of business analytics.

Collaboration and Leadership

[Candidate’s Name] excels not only as an individual contributor but also as a collaborative team member. In [specific team project], [he/she/they] [specific actions taken to lead or collaborate], fostering a productive and cohesive working environment. [His/Her/Their] ability to communicate complex analytical concepts to non-technical stakeholders was particularly noteworthy.

Constructive Feedback and Growth

In my experience, [Candidate’s Name] is highly receptive to feedback and committed to continuous improvement. I once advised [him/her/them] on [specific area for improvement], and [he/she/they] proactively [specific actions taken to improve], which led to [positive outcome or development]. This responsiveness and dedication to growth are crucial for success in a dynamic field like business analytics.


In summary, [Candidate’s Name] possesses a unique blend of technical expertise, problem-solving acumen, and collaborative spirit. I am confident that [he/she/they] will excel in the [Master’s in Business Analytics program] at [University Name] and make significant contributions to both the program and the broader field of business analytics.


[Recommender’s Name]
[Recommender’s Title]
[Company Name]

This template provides a structured format that highlights the candidate’s analytical skills, problem-solving abilities, and collaborative nature, making it suitable for applications to a Master’s in Business Analytics program.

Free Recommendation Letter sample text for masters application

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