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Sunday, December 2, 2012
Farewell to the Essay Tweet
It's been just a few admissions cycles since the University of Iowa's Tippie School of Management first introduced the option of tweeting an admission essay, but already, the tweet is being laid to rest.
To be fair, business school candidates were always required to submit a bona fide statement of purpose for admission. It's just that, as an alternative to a supplemental essay, students were invited to craft a 140-character-tweet, based on the parameters that limit postings on the popular social media site, Twitter. Tippie was so confident about the success of this idea that they offered full tuition to the top entry each year.
Since its inception, three students have won the prize. They have something in common. At least two of them linked the tweet to external videos and websites offering further insight to the candidate's accomplishments. Apparently, this was the idea. It was never the intention of the admissions committee to simply reduce word-count limits in an effort to make the process easier for incoming students.
The tweet was meant to be a launching pad. It was meant to spark some creativity, giving students an opportunity to sell themselves in a unique way. Create a power point presentation. Post a YouTube video. Link to your website. The invitation didn't work.
What does this mean for future admissions pilot projects? Students are seemingly well-versed in social media, but not totally comfortable using technology. After all, there's certainly a skill-gap between posting a tweet and building a website.
Still, as competition for MBA programs continues to escalate, admissions offices will need to come up with creative ways to unearth talent from their applicant pool. Students would do well to keep pace with the times.
Labels: Farewell to the Essay Tweet
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