Application Process

Information about the Penn State Smeal Master of Corporate Finance application process

Admission Criteria

The Penn State Smeal MCF Program features a multi-step application process, during which you will be asked to submit the following:

  • Penn State Graduate School Application
  • Admissions Essay
    • What are your short-term and long-term career goals? How does your past experience enable you to achieve these goals? How do you see your MCF experience fitting into this plan? (600-word limit)
  • Resume
  • Educational Transcripts
  • Video Application Response
  • Letters of Recommendation (2)
    • Professional recommendations preferred
  • Official English Language Proficiency Exam Scores (International Candidates)
  • Application Fee: $65

Application Deadlines

The Penn State Smeal MCF features multiple application deadlines throughout the year. Application reviews and decisions are made on a rolling basis. All aspects of the application process must be completed, submitted, and received by the applicable deadline to be considered for admission.

Deadlines for Summer 2020 Intake Submit Your Application By Expect a Decision By
Early decision deadline August 1 October 1
Priority deadline for all applicants October 1 December 1
Third round deadline for all applicants December 1 February 1
Final deadline for all applicants   February 1 April 1

Admission Decisions

All applications will be reviewed by both the Penn State Smeal MCF Program Admissions Office (MCF requirements and admissions criteria) and the Penn State Graduate School (verification of educational documentation and credentials and international visa requirements). You may be contacted by parties from either area.

Admission is granted first by the Smeal MCF Program and then by the Penn State Graduate School. The Graduate School does not act on your application without a recommendation from the MCF Admissions Office. The only accurate way to confirm receipt of your application materials and to check the status of your application is to contact the Smeal MCF Admissions Office at

Academic Integrity and Plagiarism

The Penn State Smeal College of Business has a strong commitment to ethics and integrity as reflected in our Honor Code. The admissions committee will not tolerate any form of plagiarism or appearance of impropriety in an applicant’s materials. To ensure academic integrity, all essays will be confirmed through iThenticate authenticity software. 

Plagiarism includes:

  • Copying sentences, phrases, or paragraphs exactly as they appear in the original source (this includes using sample essays)
  • Copying sentences and putting them in a different order
  • Copying sentences and replacing a few words with synonyms
  • Copying sentences and adding a few of your own

Paraphrasing includes:

  • Re-stating the author’s idea in your own words, using your own voice
  • Summarizing the author’s main points in your own words

Source: "Defining Plagiarism and Academic Integrity" from "Plagiarism Tutorial for Students"

Failure to follow these guidelines will result in a deny decision. Email with questions.