• Apply Now. Start Later.

    Darden’s Future Year Scholars Program offers exceptional college students the opportunity to gain acceptance into one of the world’s top MBA programs before beginning their professional journey. Admitted scholars may choose to begin their MBA after gaining two, three or four years of work experience.

    The application for current college seniors is now live. Start your application.

    For our 2019 cycle, we are pleased to offer three application deadlines: March 1, May 1 and August 1. 

    stay connected

    Tell us a little more about yourself.  

    For additional insights about the Future Year Scholars Program, be sure to check out the recent interview with Assistant Director of Admissions, Taylor Fisher, on the Discover Darden blog.

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    Secure your spot for the future

    Apply during the final year of your undergraduate program. Students who are currently pursuing a 5th year master’s degree are also eligible to apply.

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    As admitted scholars, you will have many opportunities to grow your network through engagement with our community, as well as an alumni mentor and individualized career support.

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    Choose to work for two, three or four years, gaining insight into the workplace and forming a foundation for your MBA experience.

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    Start the MBA program with a guaranteed scholarship in hand. All scholars will also be considered for additional scholarships and financial aid at the time of matriculation.

    Why Apply?

    In addition to receiving an offer of admission to Darden before beginning their professional career, Future Year Scholars receive:

    • A $15,000 scholarship per year of study at Darden — a total of $30,000 for the two-year MBA program — with additional opportunities for scholarship consideration at the time of matriculation.
    • Individualized career support.
    • A personal alumni mentor.
    • Access to Darden’s student and alumni network, comprised of over 15,000 people spanning 90 countries around the world.
    • Networking opportunities with current students, faculty and alumni at Darden events.
    • No application fee!

    Who is eligible to apply?

    Students who are in their final year of undergraduate study or who are completing a 5th year master's program with a graduation date between September 2018 and August 2019 are eligible to apply.

    What is the Admissions Committee looking for in prospective students?

    We are looking for exceptional students who aspire to be future ethical leaders and managers in a global world. The Admissions Committee will review and evaluate applications based on three broad areas: academics, extracurricular involvement and personal characteristics.

    Do I need to have studied business as an undergraduate student to apply?

    No. We are looking for students that come from a variety of different academic disciplines. While some admitted scholars have studied business, others have studied biology, engineering, public policy and economics.

    What type of job should I pursue after college before coming back to Darden?

    We encourage students to explore industries, functions and geographies that will begin shaping them into the leaders they aspire to be. Current Future Year Scholars are working in fields such as consulting, local government, defense and investment banking. While admitted scholars are expected to work for 2-4 years prior to coming to Darden, having a job offer at the time of application is not required.

    Would I need to decide whether I will work for 2, 3 or 4 years immediately upon admittance?

    No. After gaining a minimum of two years of professional experience, admitted scholars will be asked each year whether or not they plan on matriculating to Darden the following fall.

    What does the application require?

    The application requires a GMAT or GRE score, resume, transcript, essay and two letters of recommendation.

    Who should I ask to write my letters of recommendation?

    Recommenders are asked to comment on the applicant’s work ethic, strategic orientation, leadership skills, ability to work well on teams and communication skills among other things. Strong recommendation letters are written by people who know the applicant well, both inside and outside of the classroom or work environment. Good options for recommenders might include a former supervisor from a summer internship, a faculty member or an academic advisor.

    How do I apply for scholarships?

    All admitted scholars are awarded a $30,000 scholarship — $15,000 for each year of the program. Scholars are also considered for merit-based scholarship at the time of matriculation. There is no separate application for scholarships.

    What is the application fee?

    There is no application fee to apply!

    Is an interview required?

    Interviews play a critical role in our assessment of candidates and are required prior to acceptance into the Future Year Scholars Program. An invitation-only interview is conducted after your application has been submitted and reviewed by the Admissions Committee.

    Invitations to interview are sent on a rolling basis up to and including the decision release date for each round. There is no significance as to when an interview invitation is sent; an invitation to interview should be seen as positive indicator no matter when it is received.

    Candidates for the Future Year Scholars Program may interview with a member of the admissions staff either in Charlottesville on the Darden Grounds or through Skype. There is no preference given to candidates who choose to interview in Charlottesville vs. through Skype.

    Interview Format

    Our interviews are 30–45 minutes in length and your interviewer will not have read your application nor résumé. It is our policy to conduct blind interviews, so there is no need to send or bring in your résumé to the interview.

    Schedule a Conversation

    Schedule a phone or in-person conversation with a member of Darden's Admissions Committee to discuss how Darden could help launch your career.

    Schedule a Conversation

    Join us for an event

    We host a variety of in-person and online events . An event is a great way to make a personal connection while learning more about the Future Year Scholars Program. 

    Future Year Scholars: Learn About the GRE Webinar
    Tuesday. 23 April 2019 |1:30 p.m. EDT

    Email Us

    If you have any questions about the Future Year Scholars Program or the admissions process, contact us at FutureYear@darden.virginia.edu.

    student ambassador

    Our current Darden students look forward to answering any questions you may have about the Darden experience!  Meet our Student Ambassador, Morgan Kelly, Class of 2019.

    FYSP Ambassador - Morgan Kelly

    2012, University of Virginia — B.A. Cognitive Science 

    "Originally from the Boston Area, I am a Double Hoo and am really enjoying being back in Charlottesville. I majored in Cognitive Science undergrad, and worked in Washington, D.C. for 5 years between UVA and Darden in continuing medical education and at an energy efficiency technology company. I plan to be a product manager for a tech company coming out of Darden, with a future goal to start my own business down the road."

    Check out our recent GMAT Overview webinar for tips and education on the GMAT:


    Interested in learning more about our 2019 application? Check out our recent "unboxing" webinar:


    Looking for tips on how to fill out the application? Keep an eye on the Application Tips section of the Discover Darden blog and watch the webinar below: 

    In a recent webinar, Assistant Director of Admissions Taylor Fisher and Senior Associate Director of Admissions Katherine Alford discussed some of the frequently asked questions about the Future Year Scholars Program. Watch the video below to learn more.

    Earlier this spring, Taylor sat down with Claire Good (Class of 2018) and presented an overview of the program and its many benefits. Additionally, they answered questions from the audience about the program, the Darden school and Charlottesville! Watch the video below to learn more.