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Bruce DelMonico and Laurel Grodman

What You Need to Know About Applying in Round 3

Assistant Deans Laurel Grodman and Bruce DelMonico share their insights and debunk common misconceptions.

Assistant Deans Laurel Grodman and Bruce DelMonico recently hosted a virtual event for Round 3 applicants to Yale SOM. During the session they answered top questions that might be on your mind as you prepare your application and decide if now is the right time to submit your application.

You can watch the 30-minute recording or read on for their responses to your questions.

Is there space left in the class for me?

Laurel: I do think there is a misconception out there that Round 3 is too late to apply. Round 3 is subject to space in the class but if we’ve done our jobs well we’ve left room to make sure that candidates who are as competitive as the candidates that we admit in the other rounds will have room to join the class in Round 3. And I think this year in particular, especially as we've been very mindful of all the news about layoffs in various sectors and the softening job market, we are intentionally going into Round 3 with the capability to admit more people than maybe we would in another year. The thing I like about Round 3 is that it is flexible and we can respond to the market conditions in real time and give candidates an opportunity to get an application in and gain acceptance before a new cycle starts. The other thing I would add is there’s really no risk of applying in Round 3 in that if you are not admitted, there’s no bias against reapplying in a subsequent year. We, in fact, encourage re-applicants because often it gives you a chance to get feedback. So I'll note that we do offer feedback to candidates who were denied in any round throughout the year over the summer if you request it. It gives you a chance to build a stronger application and having gone through the process, and being comfortable with what to expect, hopefully puts you in a position to have an even more competitive candidacy in a future year if it doesn’t work out.

Can international candidates still apply in Round 3?

Bruce: Round 3 is open to all applicants regardless of your citizenship and regardless of your residency—U.S. domestic and international. We have a robust international applicant pool in Round 3. We admit international applicants in Round 3 and don’t know that they have any greater difficulty getting visas.

Laurel: I go as far as to say, we stay in close contact with our Office of International Students & Scholars to understand the specific visa timelines in various geographies throughout the summer. And so, while it’s geography specific, we don’t want to admit people who don’t realistically have a chance of getting here. We tend to even hold our international wait list open until early July in most years and, again, in the vast majority of cases that has not imposed a problem. So Round 3 to me feels very, very safe as an international student to apply.

If I am unemployed or have had a job disruption how should I approach that in my Round 3 application?

Laurel: Life happens and so I’ll start by saying whether it’s a period of current unemployment or a gap in your job history going further back, these aren’t disqualifying. I think people get fearful that these are disqualifying or that this is somehow a kind of a bad mark on your record—and that’s not the case. People take pauses or have to take pauses in their career or their academic paths for a variety of different reasons, and so we’re certainly looking to understand why and how you spent that time and to put it in the context of your overall narrative, but they’re not outright disqualifying by any means. We do have a separate space in which we ask you to comment on the time that you were not working, and that’s a great opportunity to give us a little bit more context and help us understand again what was behind the pause and what were you or what are you kind of doing during the time that you’re not employed.

I would say more generally, I know this applies to everyone, but certainly in the case of job transitions as well, sometimes an overlooked area of the application is the portion where we ask you to enter your work experiences and a little bit of informational detail about each one of them. And in each of those entries, there is a prompt to explain kind of why if it’s not your present employer, why have you moved on from that employer? Really use that opportunity to explain those transitions.

Do I need to explain why I waited until Round 3 to apply?

Bruce: Our general advice is to apply when you have your strongest application ready. And it might just be that Round 3 is when you have your strongest application ready. Maybe you were waiting to take a test or, maybe to Laurel’s point, you had a job transition and you wanted to build more professional experience, or maybe you did have a job disruption and you’re thinking, OK, I was going to wait a year for my MBA, but maybe now’s the time to do it. Or we have a lot of Silver Scholars who are college seniors and Round 3 is a more common Silver Scholar round for a lot of people—that’s the time when you’re thinking about applying to those early career options. If there’s something particularly notable, you might put it in your optional essay. The optional essay is always a place to put something that isn’t apparent from other parts of the application.

Additional Application Resources

View event recordings of Our Best Application Advice or Inside the Application, Literally for tips on the Yale SOM application.

Read this recent blog post for top insights into the application process from Assistant Dean Bruce DelMonico.

View our Application Guide.

Register for an Admissions Q&A to chat directly with Admissions Officers.