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Writing the USC WBB Supplemental Essays

The University of Southern California seems uncertain as to whether its special business program should be called a “World Bachelor of Business,” a “World Bachelor in Business,” or a “World Bachelor’s in Business,” so let’s just duck the issue and call it the USC WBB. If you’re applying to this program, you’ll have to write four additional short essays showcasing your passion and preparedness for it.

Let’s examine possible approaches for each USC WBB prompt.

World Bachelor in Business

WBB: Your Experiences and Skills

250 words max



First-year applicants applying to the WBB program are required to complete an online video interview by December 1st. Please visit the following website for instructions on the video interview, In addition, please answer the 4 short answer prompts below.

What experiences and/or skills best prepare you for success in our World Bachelor in Business program? (250 word limit)


Focus not only on direct business experiences such as jobs, business courses, internships, etc., but also on ways you might be more uniquely prepared to succeed. For example, perhaps you have a particular passion that you’d love to build a business around. What would make you stand out among other aspiring businesspeople? Some unique interest, ethical conviction, or specialized skill set relevant to today’s world?


WBB: Your Goals

250 words max


How does the WBB program meet your educational and/or professional goals? (250 word limit)

Here you’ll want to tie your goals and future plans to specific aspects of the WBB program (classes, faculty, clubs, student organizations). Do plenty of research so you can discuss how you’ll take advantage of the resources and opportunities offered. You might discuss how these resources suit your particular learning style and could prepare you for future educational opportunities. You don’t need to name an exact career, but try to discuss why certain business pursuits will be meaningful to you after college.


WBB: Skills for Changing Environments

250 words max


What skills do you find most useful in adapting to changing environments? (250 word limit)

This prompt and the one below touch on the fact that the WBB involves studying in locations around the world. Whereas in the “Experiences and Skills” prompt you discussed why you’ll be a great business student, here you’ll talk specifically about what will make you a great international learner. Brainstorm a list of times when you adapted to a new place or situation. Then for each experience on your list, think about what skills helped you manage. For your essay, pick the one or two experiences that feel most meaningful to you; discuss how the skills you listed allowed you to adapt, and how you might apply these skills in the changing WBB settings. You could also look beyond college and explore how these skills will help you in future business endeavors.



250 words max


Acknowledging that the WBB does not offer a “traditional” or fixed residential experience, please explain why this alternative education experience is a good fit for you. Please share examples of how you plan to create unique or new opportunities in the WBB environment. (250 word limit)

In your answer to the previous prompt, you’ll show how you’re prepared to move around geographically during college. Now you’ll want to consider specific ways you’ll not only adapt, but take advantage of this type of education. You’ll want to research what’s offered at the three WBB locations—but this is just a starting point. To be compelling to readers, explore how you could combine these globe-spanning resources in ways that reflect your unique interests, passions, and personality. For example, perhaps you want to be exposed to the Hollywood film industry while at USC Marshall; while in Hong Kong you could learn about technology that might be used in filmmaking; and in Milan you hope to study how to finance high-tech moviemaking.

Although the four USC WBB essay prompts touch on similar themes, try to avoid having your answers overlap with each other. Also try to highlight aspects of your life and personality that you haven’t covered in other areas of your application.

Want information on the other USC supplemental prompts?  Check out our guide here.


Click here for our guide to writing the Common App Essay


Prompt’s Essay Specialists reviewed 13,000 admissions essays in 2018, helping thousands of students submit their applications with confidence.

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