How To Use The Michigan Ross Portfolio Exercise To Really Impress The Admissions Committee


Ross. Admissions. Portfolio.

It’s just three words, but they can carry a lot of weight for applicants who are worried about how they can use the exercise to best showcase themselves and their abilities to us on the admissions team.

If you’re not up to speed on what the portfolio is, take a minute or two to read through this webpage about it. Basically: It’s a supplement to your Ross application that includes a 500-word essay and the submission of an “artifact.”

In the essay, we ask you to use business and problem solving skills to develop a solution to a unique issue in your community. This is our take on a business case study for the admissions process.

For the artifact, we’re looking for a piece of content that showcases your passions or a unique aspect about who you are as a person. You’ll also need to write a brief 250-word description of the artifact to help us understand its importance.

The portfolio is our opportunity to get to know you on a deeper level, and it’s your opportunity to share what makes you who you are.

You want to impress us with your application and the portfolio? Here are my best portfolio tips to help you do just that:

  • For both the essay and the artifact, keep it personal and use your own words. Part of the goal is to get to know you as an individual. We want to see your personality.
  • In the essay question, draw some connections between  the business world, your life, and your local community. The admissions team (as well as hiring companies, our school community, and your future friends here at Ross) values creativity, originality, and meaningful civic engagement.
  • When choosing an artifact, try to find the “missing piece” in your application. What don’t we know about you? Consider sharing something that you are proud of and that is unique to your identity or your personal story. We’ll have a blog in the next month or so that will show off some of our favorite portfolio examples - keep an eye out for that!
  • Artifact examples can include a high school project or paper, a community newspaper article highlighting an important achievement, a personal website, a piece on a school or community program or event that you were instrumental in creating or implementing, or a certificate of a high school or community award. It should be something that shows your passion and a unique aspect of yourself. It does not need to be business related.

Follow these tips and be true to yourself and your values, and you’ll go a long way toward impressing our admissions committee.

We can’t wait to see your portfolios and are looking forward to learning more about you in the coming weeks and months!

Read more about the portfolio exercise