Applying to a graduate business program may seem daunting, and prospective students often have many questions about the best way to approach the process.
Christa Hinton, assistant dean at DePaul University’s Kellstadt Graduate School of Business and a graduate of its MBA program, answers questions about Kellstadt's admissions and what prospective students should know when applying.
What are the most frequent questions you receive from prospective students?
The biggest questions we get are about deadlines and what's required to apply. Specifically, we get questions about GMAT and GRE requirements and the minimum GPA or GMAT score needed to be admitted.
It’s important for our applicants to realize that admission is holistic. The admission committee looks at all admission requirements to determine if the applicant is a good fit for the Kellstadt programs and if our programs are a good fit for that applicant’s goals.
Some of our programs do not require the GMAT or GRE. We also have a waiver policy that details how prospective students may be waived from the GMAT/GRE requirement.
Want to learn more about test requirments for Kellstadt applicants? See the GMAT/GRE Requirements and Waiver Policy on the Admission page.
We have no minimum GMAT or GPA requirements. However, we can say that the average GMAT score for our currently admitted students is 570 and the average GPA is 3.2.
We also get a lot of questions about how long essays should be. Our best advice is no more than two pages. What you want to say in the essay is basically what you want to get out of the degree, how it will benefit your career goals and why you’re ready for a graduate program. Outside of that, the committee can see your academic background, resume, etc.
Another question applicants have is about career assistance during and after their time at DePaul. We are pleased to be able to offer a dedicated Career Management Center just for Kellstadt students and alumni. The CMC offers career guidance, networking assistance and jobs and internships.
What should prospective students keep in mind when applying to Kellstadt?
Students should plan ahead. Don’t wait until the last minute to get your admission materials to us. We want to make sure you have enough time to get us everything we need and that you give yourself time to make final plans for starting your program.
Kellstadt does rolling admission and we admit students every quarter for most of our programs, which is not common for all graduate programs. We also encourage students to ask questions. The admission staff is more than happy to answer questions, check your status, look at your materials and provide advice. Use us as a resource for a smooth admission process. We’re here to help you prepare an application that will allow the admission committee to see you as a good candidate.
What are the deadlines?
While there are Kellstadt application deadlines, they actually are more like priority dates than hard deadlines. The deadlines are a way for us to ensure we have enough time to process and notify students about an admission decision and give students time to develop a degree plan and register as early as possible.
We work hard to make sure students can get into the quarter they wish to start, so if in doubt, contact the Kellstadt Office. We can help you get the process finalized even if it’s close to the start of the quarter. In the end, our commitment is to process applicants as quickly and efficiently as possible.
What do international students need to consider when applying to DePaul’s business school?
International applicants need to know that their deadlines are designed to ensure they have time to get their I-20 (student visa application) submitted for their visa interview and to purchase airline tickets. It’s important to note that the process for international applicants is much longer, so applicants need to plan in advance and give us enough time to get scores, transcript evaluations, etc.
What makes DePaul distinctive?
One of the things I value about DePaul and the Kellstadt Graduate School of Business is our commitment to our students—whether it’s our ability to provide a strong practical education, our faculty’s personal approach to mentoring students, or the opportunities that we provide in relation to career and professional development through our strong connections to the business community.
Our location in Chicago’s Loop is a big advantage because it allows us to create a real-world student experience. Students have opportunities to do hands-on projects with area organizations and we frequently have speakers from the business community speaking on campus.
The other factor that makes us unique is our commitment to graduate education for working professionals. I believe we provide a top-notch education for those who are trying to balance work, family and a desire to expand their potential with a graduate degree.
To learn more about applying to Kellstadt, contact the business school admission office at firstname.lastname@example.org or (312) 362-8810 (toll free outside of Illinois: 1-800-4DEPAUL).