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Pradeep Bhatt

The Importance of Values and Culture in My Admissions Decision

by Pradeep Bhatt Wednesday, September 7, 2016

A couple of months ago I was approached by the Director of Admissions of a top 30 U.S. Business School (whose offer I had declined) seeking feedback on the admission process and insight into why I was not choosing to pursue my MBA there. Though I spoke to him about their admission process and how can it be improved, I invariably and excitedly spoke about what the Wisconsin School of Business had done to earn my commitment.

At the time I made my admission decision, I had been admitted to seven business schools and had either full or partial scholarship from five of them. The Wisconsin School of Business (WSB) offered me a Wisconsin Distinguished Graduate Fellowship (one of the best in the country). This generous merit aid package played an important role in my decision to accept WSB’s offer, however I would not consider this to be the sole reason I opted to attend Wisconsin.

I chose Wisconsin because people at WSB showed me that they care for my success as much as I do. As a prospective student, especially an international candidate from India, the support I received which highlighted the sincere care and concern of the WSB students, staff, and Faculty played an important role in my decision. I would give exceptional credit to the Program Office at WSB who were always ready to take my questions and queries. Small things like quick responses on mails, discussions on opportunities at WSB even before the start of the session showed me the focus and proactive nature of the career management team and the admissions staff.

I could sense the collaborative culture of the WSB from the interactions between the current students and the admission staff, which was my main motivator in decision making. I had received multiple emails from the students, even before I had accepted the offer, reaching out to me and providing a platform where I can discuss my questions and queries. It was during these discussions and Skype calls that one student remarked that the reason why they were offering such assistance is because there is a culture of paying it forward. I could feel the values of support and collaboration, which most schools talk about, imbibed in the DNA of the school and its people here. As a current student, I cannot wait to be given that same opportunity to counsel, mentor or guide a prospective student.

Coming into the first week of school I had never expected to be a part of such a dynamic group in a collaborative setting. I see and sense the passion for moving together forward in every single individual I meet. I feel that my success is no longer just my business; this school and the people here have made it their business. They are as passionate about me to succeed as I am, which not only overwhelms me with gratitude and emotion, but also implores a certain resolve.


  • Resolve that this school, this program, and the people here will get the best of me.
  • Resolve that I will contribute to this school, this program, and the people here to the best of my ability.
  • Resolve that I will derive the best that this school has to offer and I will extend my best to this school.
  • Resolve that I will move Together, Forward.

On Wisconsin!