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Virginia Darden MBA Interviews

Virginia Darden MBA Interviews

According to publicly available reports, Darden bundles a half-dozen interview questions into one covering statement that directs interviewees to tell their story.

  • In a nutshell, Darden’s single question is “Tell me about yourself.”

In at least one case, this extended version of the same question was asked:

“I am here for you to tell me your story. Just tell me about yourself. In the process you can cover college, anything before college if relevant, your resume, why MBA and why Darden.”

According to the public reports you should expect:

  • to be given 20-30 minutes for your story (though the whole interview itself may last longer should you talk for a long time and follow up questions are saved until the end of your monologue.)
  • to be interrupted sometimes with follow-up questions.
  • to be interviewed by a current student, possibly with an adcom member present (unless, of course, you have arranged on an off-campus interview with an alumnus.)
  • the interview to be blind (i.e. the interviewer will not have seen your resume.)
  • a relaxed atmosphere: In the Virginia Darden MBA interview interviewers seem genuinely interested in hearing applicants’ personal histories, from what I’ve seen in reports.
  • to be given the chance to ask questions about Darden to the interviewer.

Based on what the reports say, Darden really seems to want to get to know the person “behind” the application- the person who wrote the application essays and earned the test scores that inspired Darden to extend an interview invitation.

Considering that most interviewers are students, and the fact that they are allowing interviewees the freedom to talk so much about their lives, suggests they consider this the best way to select for people who would be the most interesting future classmates.

Who will interview you, and how long will the interview last?

Like most business schools, the Darden interview is taken by a Career Management Team. The interview is usually done by one member from the team. The interview typically lasts for 25-30 minutes or may extend to 35-40 minutes in some instances.

Will the interviewer have read my application?

It is always safer to assume that the Panel members have access to your complete application. In most instances, they would have read it completely. Unless the school specifically says that it will be an blind interview. Mostly North American Business schools in US and Canada have an  Blind interviews, European and SE Asian schools conduct interviews via Alums or panels which have full access to your entire application. 

How can you prepare for your interview?

Like most MBA Interviews, your interview will mainly revolve around a pretty similar set of MBA interview questions. You can never predict what questions will be asked, but with enough research, you can predict what are the most commonly asked questions in these interviews. We have created a short FAQ list below to get you a jump start, and we also have a free guide linked below to help you prepare for these commonly asked interview questions.

 

Virginia Darden MBA Frequently Asked Interview Questions

Professional experience-related questions

  1. Tell me something about yourself, or Walk me through your resume.
  2. What are your short-term and long-term goals?
  3. Why MBA? or Why now? or Why an MBA at this stage of your career?
  4. Why Virginia Darden?
  5. What is your Plan B? in case your primary goal does not happen?

Personal qualities-related questions

  1. What are your key strengths? Can you give some examples, please?
  2. What are your key weaknesses? Can you give some examples, please?
  3. How can you add value to the Class? or Why should we take you?
  4. Any reasons why we should not select you?
  5. Interests and Hobbies related questions – why do you do it, what have you achieved/learned?

Frequently Asked Situational & Behavioral Questions

  1. What is your leadership style? Can you give an example of a project you led?
  2. What would you describe are your greatest achievement to date?
  3. Give me an example of a time you failed.
  4. Give me an example of a time you faced a conflict. How did you handle that?
  5. Give me an example of a time when you did not meet a client’s expectations. What happened, and how did you attempt to rectify the situation?

The last one – Do you have any questions for us?

  1. Can you please tell me how international exchange students and schools are assigned?
  2. How club leadership is selected?
  3. Any other questions you may have in regards to the program.

Darden MBA Interview Questions – 1

I had a 30-min interview with a 2nd year international student. It was very easy going and conversational. It was also a blind interview and my interviewer did not take notes. The questions are very typical for MBA.

They include:

  • Introduce yourself and tell me about your background.
  • Why MBA?
  • Why Darden?
  • How do you see yourself getting involved on campus?
  • Tell me about a conflict you had with a coworker and how you resolved it?
  • What is your international experience?
  • What classes are you interested in?
  • Do you have any questions for me?

Darden MBA Interview Questions – 2

My interview was at 9am at Darden’s admissions office with a member of the Adcom. There were about 10-20 interviewees also there for morning interviews, with about 4-6 scheduled every hour. My interviewer stated at the beginning that the interview would be completely blind, as she had not even viewed my resume. She then asked me to spend about 15-20 minutes talking about myself. Although 15-20 minutes sounds long, I was in reality telling her aspects of my life that she would then ask clarifying questions about. Overall, the interview was more conversational than question and answer style. However, she did ask some specific questions related to Darden and my background, including:

– Why MBA?

– Why Darden?

– How do you see yourself contributing to Darden?

– What would you become involved with at Darden?

– Describe a time when you had difficulties in a team setting?

In general none of the questions really surprised me, but I did gain a sense of the Darden community. Specifically, Darden seems to represent a homely, family environment that caters to those seeking an intimate learning environment.

Darden MBA Interview Questions – 3

She asked me to tell her about myself and I just explained my background, early life, undergrad, grad school, and work experience. She stopped me a couple of times for clarification but then just let me roll for the most part. I’d say the “TMAY” was around 15 min. I then went into – Why an MBA, Why Now, and Why Darden. That was another 15 min. 
She asked no follow-up questions and asked me if I had any questions. I asked about 3 insightful questions which was another 15 min. All in all, interview went about 45 min.

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Darden MBA Interview Questions – 4

I was interviewed by the Associate Director of Admissions. Interview lasted about 30 mins:
  1. Tell me about yourself – I included why MBA and 2 fun facts about myself here. I talked about how I moved around a lot so she dived into that in depth 
  2. Why did you move a lot? 
  3. Where did you have the most memorable time – out of the countries you moved to so far? 
  4. Do you use your computer science degree at work? How? 
  5. Was there a time where you had to work in a team, how did that go? What was the outcome? 
  6. Was there a time where you were not able to perform a task successfully? How did you deal with it, what did you do? 
  7. Darden encourages inclusion and diversity – what do those mean to you and have you ever been in a situation which involved inclusion and diversity? 
  8. What are you short-term and long-term goals? and Why an MBA at Darden? 
  9. Anything else you want to note or emphasize that you want the admissions team to be aware about? 
  10. Do you have any questions for me?

Darden MBA Interview Questions – 5

The interview lasted for about 30 mins. She had a very warm countenance and it was conversational. 

1. TMA yourself from childhood till now as you’re considering MBA. I used this opportunity to run through my resume, why MBA and why Darden 

2. Two Follow up questions based on what I said 

3. Tell me about a time you worked in a team or led a team to solve a problem 

4. Follow up questions again 

5. Any other thing I should know. I used this opportunity to speak about what I’ve done in terms of impact and collaboration. Also elaborated on why Darden is the best fit for me and emphasized that I had engaged a few current students 

6. Any questions for me. I had googled her name since I received it the day before and Google took me directly to her page. My long term career goal is kind of in line with what the Adcom does for Darden, so my question was in line with that. So sort of trying to hear from an experienced opinion on what I intend to do. 

Lastly, she mentioned that decision will be provided in line with the timeline on the website.

Darden MBA Interview Questions – 6

During my interview for Darden’s MBA program, I spoke with the Admissions Director. He asked me to provide an overview of myself. I began by talking about my formative years and previous work experiences. Throughout my interview, he paused me a few times to inquire about the places I had worked and my international encounters. We discussed my motivation for pursuing an MBA and why Darden would be an excellent match for my career. Also, we talked about my values and hobbies. He posed questions regarding my perspectives on DEI. He also inquired about the other schools I am considering and the top three factors I prioritize when selecting a school. Subsequently, he shared more details about his background and admissions-related experiences. As the interview drew close, I had the opportunity to ask him two questions. I spoke for approximately 30 minutes while he dedicated around 10 minutes to addressing my inquiries.

Darden MBA Interview Questions – 7

I recently had an interview with Catie Yielding, who is a member of the admissions committee (adcom) at Darden. She was lovely, and the interview had a relaxed and friendly atmosphere. She asked me the following questions: 

1)Can you tell me about yourself? She asked some follow-up questions about my introduction, like why I chose my undergraduate program and how I found a job after graduating. 

2)What motivated you to pursue an MBA? 

3)What aspects of the Darden curriculum are you interested in? 

4)Which organizations or clubs are you interested in joining? 

5)Do you have any questions for me? 

Overall, the Darden interview is a one-sided conversation where you’re expected to talk more. However, if the interviewer prefers, it’s okay to stray a little from the main path. It’s important to be well-prepared on topics such as your childhood experiences, undergraduate experiences that have shaped you, your work experience, why you want to pursue an MBA, your interest in Darden, your extracurricular activities or hobbies, and your core values. Good luck!

Darden MBA Interview Questions – 8

I had a casual interview with the Admissions Committee (AdCom) over coffee. The interviewer set the tone for the conversation and explained how the interview would be conducted. Here are the questions she asked me:

1)Can you tell me about yourself, including both personal and professional aspects that help define who you are?

2)Following up on that, how was your experience working at a startup different from working at an established company?

3)What are your long-term and short-term goals, and why do you want to pursue an MBA? 4)Why are you specifically interested in Darden?

5)Do you have any questions for me?

6)Is there anything else you would like to add? After the interview, I felt it went okay, but I couldn’t help but worry and overthink. However, I was thrilled when I received the admission offer!

Here are a couple of pieces of advice based on my experience:

1)Take the time to research the types of interviews Darden conducts. In hindsight, I could have taken a more active role in leading the conversation, as it seems to be the structure they prefer for their interviews.

2)Stay present and listen attentively to your interviewer without over-planning the conversation in your head. This will help you have a natural conversation and feel relaxed, especially if you’re nervous.

Darden MBA Interview Questions – 9

My Darden MBA program interview was with a second-year student. He made the format of the interview very casual and conversational. We discussed various topics, including. TMAY (Tell Me About Yourself): I shared my life story, background, and experiences and talked about my life outside of work. I explained why I wanted to pursue an MBA and precisely why I was interested in Darden as a school. We discussed my transitioning into the field of consultancy. I talked about my experiences and involvement in diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives, particularly mentioning my volunteer work. We had a general conversation about my views on India and how I approach my role at work. Towards the end, I had the opportunity to ask the interviewer my own questions. And he shared his overall experience at the School. Overall, the interview went well, and even if I didn’t get selected, I had a wonderful experience

Darden MBA Interview Questions – 10

My interview was in August with the Admissions Director. He asked me a few questions, starting with “Tell me about yourself.” I shared my background, including my work experience, volunteering activities, hobbies, and what inspires me. He also asked me why I wanted to pursue an MBA, why at this particular time, and what my short-term and long-term goals are. Additionally, I explained why I am specifically interested in attending Darden, highlighting the reasons that make the School stand out to me. Toward the end of the interview, he gave me five minutes to ask any questions I had.

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