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ISB YLP - ISB Young Leaders program

  • ISB YLP Stage 2 is open for 2023 applications
  • ISB YLP 2023 Stage 2: 31 August 2023
  • ISB YLP 2024: 22 October, 2023 (Stage 1, Round 1); 31 August 2024 (stage 2)

ISB YLP 2024 - Application Process, Eligibility, Important Dates

Eligibility Criteria for ISB YLP 2024:

Applicant must be in the pre-final or final year of undergraduate or postgraduate education.

ISB YLP 2024 Application & Decision Dates:

  1. Round 1 Application Deadline: 22 October, 2023

  2. Round 2 Application Deadline: 31 March, 2024

  3. Round 1 Shortlist Announcement: 19 December, 2023

  4. Round 2 Shortlist Announcement: 17 May, 2024

  5. Stage II Application Deadline: 31 August, 2024

  6. Stage III (Interview) Dates: September 15, 2024 – November 30, 2024

  7. Final Result Announcement: Second week of December, 2024

ISB YLP 2024 Application Fee: INR 3000 (non-refundable)

ISB YLP 2024 Application Process:

  1. Complete the online application form within the Round 1 or Round 2 deadline. 

  2. Stage I - Online Application: If shortlisted in Stage I, await the shortlist announcement for further evaluation.

  3. Stage II - Shortlist:

  4. Final Result: The final result of the selection process will be announced in the second week of December 2024. Submit additional information and required documents within the Stage II application deadline.

  5. Stage II - Online Application:

  6. Stage III - Face-to-Face Interview: If shortlisted in Stage II, attend the face-to-face interview between September 15 and November 30, 2024.

  7. Admission Fee Payment:

  8. Applicants offered admission must remit a partially refundable admission fee of INR 1,00,000 + GST within 15 days of receiving the offer.

Components of ISB YLP Stage 1 Application 2024:

  1. Applicant Information:

  2. Application Details

  3. Personal Details like Contact Details, 

  4. Academic Information:

  5. Class X

  6. Class XII

  7. Undergraduate Education (Bachelor's)

  8. Integrated Programme (Bachelor’s & Master’s)

  9. Post-graduate Education (Master’s)

  10. Additional Education

  11. Additional Certifications

  12. Internships/Freelancing:

  13. Awards & Initiatives:

  14. Essays:
    Essay 1 - Stage 1: Mention one challenging situation that you have faced in your life till now. How has it transformed you as a person? (300 words max)

  15. Application Submission:

  16. Declaration

  17. Statement of Integrity

  18. Application Fee

What is the ISB YLP Application Process?

ISB YLP Eligibility:

Prefinal or final year students can apply for ISB YLP.

ISB YLP 2024 Application Process:

First, create an ISB YLP application login on the ISB Website.

ISB YLP Admissions take place in 3 stages.

Stage 1 of the ISB YLP Application has two rounds of application. The round 1 of Stage 1 ISB YLP Application has a deadline on 16 October 2022 and the Stage 2 of ISB YLP Application has a deadline on 26 March 2023.

What is required to apply to ISB YLP Stage 1?

To apply to the ISB YLP Stage 1 the applicant has to go to the same ISB YLP login he created earlier and submit an application form there with the following details:

1. Academic qualifications

2. Awards and achievements of the applicant

3. One essay for ISB YLP Stage 1

4. Online application form

5. Application fee has to be submitted on ISB YLP Stage 1 only.

What is the ISB YLP Stage 2?

The applicants who are shortlisted in the ISB YLP stage 1 are further required to apply to ISB YLP Stage 2.

In the ISB YLP stage two application, there is no new YLP application login that needs to be created. 

In the same ISB YLP Login the applicant must add the following information for the stage 2:

1. A GMAT or GRE score

2. One essay for stage 2

3. One letter of reference.

ISB YLP Stage 2 results are expected between 15 September 2023 to 30 November 2023. 

The final stage after this for ISB YLP applicants is the ISB Interview.

Does YLP require GMAT?

YLP requires GMAT or the GRE score to be submitted only when they are shortlisted for the second stage.  At the first stage of the ISB YLP application the applicant only needs to submit and online form with the academic details, extracurriculars, hobbies and the ISB YLP Stage 1 essay.

Once the applicants are shortlisted on the basis of their stage 1 applications, they need to submit the GMAT or the GRE scores for the ISB YLP stage 2 applications.


There is no minimum GMAT or GRE score which is required to be submitted by ISB YLP applicants. However if the applicant aims to submit a competitive application, they must try to score above the school average GMAT or GRE scores. 

What is ISB YLP Program?

ISB YLP is the Only Deferred MBA in India. It is a great opportunity for graduates to secure an admit to the ISB PGP.

  • ISB YLP not an MBA Program

  • Its an entry route to the full time ISB MBA

  • Deferred admit to join ISB PGP after 20 months work experience

  • Only for Final and Prefinal Year Students pursuing bachelors, 5 year Program, Post Grad students

  • Application process for ISB YLP is conducted in 3 Stages. An applicant can apply to the next stage after being shortlisted for the previous one.

ISB YLP 2023 Essay Topic For Stage 1:

Everyone is inclined towards a particular interest/goal which they are passionate about, be it in the field of academics or extra-curriculars. What is that one thing that you are passionate about? What are your current efforts in pursuing it , and what efforts will you put in the future to achieve that goal?

(300 words max)

What's required for the ISB YLP Stage 2?

For the ISB YLP Stage 2 application the applicants need to submit:

1. GMAT or GRE scores.

  1. School Code for Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT): N2D-J5-99

  2. School Code for Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL): 9047

  3. School Code for Graduate Record Examination (GRE): 7891

2. One essay as below:

​ISB YLP Stage 2 Essay:

What is the ideal career which you always wanted to pursue? Do you still want to pursue the same or has it changed? How do you plan to make your ideal career a reality? (300 words max)

Get tips on how to write a strong ISB Essay.

​3. One Evaluation​ Letter

ISB YLP - Young leaders program is the deferred MBA program offered by Indian School of Business, Hyderabad for pre final and final year students to join ISB MBA after 2 years of work experience. ISB YLP gives you a guaranteed admission to the FT World ranked ISB MBA program.

ISB YLP 2023 fees, application, eligibility 
  1. ISB YLP 2023 Stage 1 application submission deadline: 15 October 2022​

  2. ISB YLP 2023 Stage 1 shortlist announcement: 10 May 2022

  3.  ISB YLP 2023 Stage 2 application deadline: 31 August 2023

  4.  ISB YLP 2022 Stage 3 shortlists for interview: September 15, 2022 – November 30, 2022

  5. ​ISB YLP 2022 admit announcements: Rolling basis from Nov 15, 2022 to Feb, 2023

ISB YLP eligibility

  1. Any student pursuing any bachelors or masters course in their pre-final or the final year of studies can apply for ISB YLP.​

  2. Students pursuing any out of undergraduate or postgraduate degree can apply.​

  3. To apply to stage 2 an applicant must have submitted ISB YLP stage 1 application.​

  4. Contact us for ISB admission consulting and ISB essay help.

ISB YLP Application

  1. Stage 1 ISB YLP application requires submission of one essay.​

  2. Describe an event or accomplishment that became a turning point in your life?  How did it change your perspective about yourself and others?  ​

  3. Stage 2 ISB YLP application 2022 requires 1 more essay, 1 recommendation letter and GMAT/ GRE score submission.

ISB YLP 2023
What GMAT score is required for ISB YLP?

The ISB YLP program does not have a minimum GMAT score requirement. The admission criteria for ISB YLP take into account multiple factors such as academic performance, extracurricular activities, and leadership potential. A high GMAT score can strengthen your application, but it is not the only factor considered.

For a competitive application, it is suggested that applicants submit a GMAT or GRE score which is close to or higher than the school average.

The recent average scores for GMAT for ISB intake was 720 with a median score of 710 while the recent average score for GRE for ISB intake was 328.

Since the ISB YLP applicants have very little or nil experience a strong test score would strengthen their application.

Is ISB YLP Worth it?
  1. ISB offers 42 different exchange programmes with some of the best management schools around the world.

  2. According to the Global FT MBA Rankings, 2021 ISB is the number one in India, number five in Asia, and number 23, globally. 

  3. ISB ranks number three globally in terms of salary growth. In terms of the salary growth graduates get a 173% increase post ISB. 

  4. In terms of research productivity, according to the American Marketing Association, ISBs research productivity is number one in Asia and number 44 globally, in supply chain management. 

  5. ISB ranks number one in India and top 100 globally. 

  6. Bloomberg also ranks ISB as number one in India, and number five, in the Asia Pacific region.

  7. The alumni network at ISB is vast with more than 12,500 students, out of which more than 550 alumni have already progressed to the CXOs, ie. the top decision making roles.

  8. ISB has more than 600 alumni engaged in startups and entrepreneurship and their family business with five unicorns.

  9. ISB alumni are currently spread across 60 different countries and 400 different cities.

FAQ for ISB YLP 2024 Application

ISB Young Leaders Program is a deferred MBA admission option offered by ISB for its ISB PGP program.



What are the stages of Application to ISB YLP 2024?


There are three stages of application to ISB Young Leaders Program:

Stage 1: has two rounds of application and requires one essay only. An applicant can apply to any of the two acceptance rounds for stage 1 ISB YLP

Stage 2 ISB YLP: has one round of application which has three components to the application process -

1. Test score,

2. Essay,

3. Recommendation letter

Completing the 3 Key Sections for Your Young Leaders Program Stage 2 Application:

A) Test Score: GMAT or GRE for ISB YLP:

What is the Submission Deadline for GMAT/GRE Scores in Stage 2 of ISB Young Leaders Program application 2024?

Test scores can be submitted until the respective round's application deadline date which is August 31, 2023.

Are unofficial scores accepted as a part of the ISB YLP Stage 2 application?

Yes, unofficial scores are acceptable and can be uploaded.

What can I do if I have no official or unofficial score at application time for ISB YLP Stage 2?

If the applicant lacks official or unofficial scores, an email confirmation of the exam appointment should be uploaded with the ISB YLP stage 2 application.


How long is the validity of GRE/GMAT Score?

Both the GMAT or the GRE scores remains valid for 5 years from the test date.


Does ISB prefer GMAT or the GRE scores?

There is no preference. ISB treats GMAT and GRE scores equally, without discrimination or score conversion.

What is the safe score range for ISB Young Leaders Program admission?

There's no minimum ISB score requirement, but the score range for the 2024 cohort is: GRE - 319 to 339 with an average of 330. GMAT - 530 to 780 with an average of 716.


Is the GMAT score or the GRE score mandatory for PGP Application?

Yes, GMAT/GRE scores must be taken and submitted before applying to the PGP program.


Can I submit the ISB YLP Stage application with the Test Centre Score Report?

Yes, the application can be submitted with a test centre/unofficial score report. Official scores must reach the Admissions Team within three weeks.

Does ISB Admissions process evaluate the Integrated Reasoning (IR) Scores?

No. The Integrated Reasoning (IR) scores in the GMAT score report are not considered during ISB application evaluation.

What is the valid period for GMAT scores or GRE Scores for the ISB Application process?

GMAT or GRE Scores remain valid for 5 years from the exam date, for the ISB application process ensure that the scores are valid up to the application round's deadline.

I have both the GMAT or the GRE scores? Which one will ISB consider if I submit both the scores?

If multiple scores are submitted, the higher score within the 5-year validity is considered by the ISB admissions process.

By when should my Official GMAT score or GRE Score should reach the ISB YLP admissions team?

Your Official scores are usually expected to reach ISB within three weeks after reporting.

Can I submit the GMAT score or the GRE Score after the ISB application deadline?

No. An application can't be submitted without a valid score, but a test centre score report can accompany the application.

How can I waive the submission of the GMAT score or the GRE score under Exceptional Circumstances?

No, the GMAT or the GRE score requirement can't be waived for the ISB Young Leaders Program process.

What is the better score for applying to ISB - GRE or GMAT?

ISB treats GRE and GMAT scores equally, without preference or conversion.

B) ISB Young Leaders Program Stage 2 Essay 2024:

What is the word limit for the ISB Young Leaders Program Stage 2 Essay?

The maximum word limit for the ISB YLP Stage 2 essay is 300 words.

How many number of essays are required for ISB YLP Stage 2 application?

Only one essay is needed for the ISB YLP stage 2 application process.

C) Recommendation Letter:

Who is the Ideal Recommender for my ISB YLP Stage 2 application?

The evaluator should be someone closely acquainted with your recent work, skills, areas for improvement, and overall performance. This could be your class in-charge, project guide, faculty from a club or society, or a mentor (academic or industry professional).


When to Submit Recommender Details for the ISB application process?

Adding recommender details are part of the ISB Young Leaders Program Stage 2 application. Provide them with ample time for a comprehensive evaluation.


How can I obtain a Recommendation letter for ISB YLP Stage 2 application?


In the ISB YLP Stage 2 application, you must provide the recommender's name, phone number, and official email. They will receive an evaluation link to submit the recommendation online.


How many recommendations are needed for the ISB YLP Stage 2 process?

A single Letter of Recommendation (LOR) is required.

What is the prescribed template for ISB YLP Recommendation letter?

For the ISB YLP stage recommendation letter no specific template is needed. No PDF or physical copies are necessary, as the recommendation process is entirely conducted online.


There are more deferred MBA Programs   to consider as fresh graduates to apply for.

How long is the ISB YLP Interview?

In the case of the ISB YLP interview, the duration is around 40 minutes, and the panel typically consists of ISB alumni, most likely the ISB YLP alumni. The interview questions in this case will likely be tailored to the ISB YLP program and its focus on leadership development.

Some common ISB YLP interview questions that candidates can expect to encounter include:

  1. Tell us about yourself: This question is often used as an icebreaker and is an opportunity for candidates to give a brief overview of their background, experiences, and achievements.

  2. Why do you want to pursue an MBA? This question is aimed at understanding the candidate's motivations and goals for pursuing an MBA.

  3. What are your career goals? This question is designed to evaluate the candidate's career aspirations and whether they align with the program's focus and values.

  4. What are your strengths and weaknesses? This question helps the admissions committee assess the candidate's self-awareness and ability to reflect on their own abilities.

  5. Can you tell us about a time when you demonstrated leadership? This question is aimed at assessing the candidate's leadership potential and ability to work in a team.

  6. How do you handle difficult situations or conflicts? This question helps the admissions committee evaluate the candidate's problem-solving skills and ability to handle stress and pressure.

  7. What do you think you can contribute to the program? This question is designed to evaluate the candidate's fit with the program and how they can add value to the program.

Overall, the ISB YLP interview is an opportunity for candidates to showcase their skills, experiences, and motivation for pursuing the program. With the help of the above information, candidates can prepare well and confidently answer the interview questions in a comprehensive manner.

Does ISB send rejection mail for YLP?

Yes, the rejection mails are sent at the end when the result is declared after the third stage.

What are the deferred MBA programs across the world?

There are many options to pursue a deferred MBA across the world. The list of the schools are as below:

  1. HBS 2+2

  2. Stanford GSB Deferred Admission

  3. Wharton MBA Advance Access Program

  4. Yale SOM Silver Scholars Program

  5. Chicago Booth Scholars Program

  6. UVA Darden Future year admissions

  7. MIT Sloan MBA Early Admission Program

  8. Columbia Business School Deferred Enrollment program

  9. Berkeley Haas Accelerated Access

  10. Carnegie Mellon Tepper Future Business Leaders

  11. Kellogg Future Leaders

  12. IESE – Young Talent Path

  13. Emory Goizueta Early Admission

  14. University of Minnesota Carlson

  15. NYU Stern Berkley Scholars

  16. Ivey Advanced Entry Scholars MBA Program

  17. ISB YLP (Young Leaders Program)


ISB YLP is a deferred MBA i.e. it is a different entry point to the main ISB PGP program where freshers can secure a guaranteed admit to enter the ISB MBA program once they have completed 20 months of work experience.​

Does YLP need work experience?

ISB YLP applicants can either be in their final year or pre final year of education (undergraduate program or graduate program) provided they have no work experience. The ISB YLP applicants must not have ​any work experience however they can start their MBA at ISB once they have completed 20 months of work experience.

How many seats are there in ISB YLP?

There is no clear number given for the number of admits rolled out for ISB YLP, however it has been observed that around 80-90 students in a batch comprise ISB YLP admits.

Does ISB have a two year MBA?

ISB does not offer a two year MBA program. It offers only a one year MBA program i.e. the ISB PGP. The ISB Executive MBA program ISB PGPpro and ISB PGPMAX are 18 months and 15 months in duration as they are part time/ weekend schedule programs.

Are YLP results out?

The results for Stage 1 shortlisting for ISB YLP 2022 are expected to be released 10 May 2022 onwards .

Is IIM better or ISB ?

ISB and IIM are both leading business schools in India. Which is better totally depends on the preferences of the applicants. In terms of options available for freshers  in India ISB YLP vs IIM has some clear differences:

1. ISB YLP is a deferred MBA admit which means that the student begins the MBA education after having gained 20 months of work experience. IIM on the other hand offers an MBA program which they can start right after graduating.

2. ISB MBA is a one year MBA program so it definitely gets done one year earlier than the 2 year MBA at IIM.

3. ISB MBA does not offer a summer internship period which is offered at IIM 2 year MBA programs.

4. ISB MBA accepts the GMAT score or the GRE score while the IIM 2 year MBA accepts the CAT score for the admissions process.

Is GMAT 700 enough for ISB?

Yes, We have had numerous admits at GMAT 700 however the overall profile of the applicant is extremely important to be successful in the application process. Along with the GMAT score, ISB pays attention to the academic profile, extra curricular and leadership initiatives, essays, reference letters, and interview.​

What GMAT score is required for ISB YLP?

A GMAT score close to the school average of 710 or above is a good GMAT score

to apply to ISB YLP.  There is no minimum cut off for the GMAT score to apply to ISB. The previous range of GMAT scores admitted to ISB has been 600 to 780.

How is the ISB YLP different from ISB PGP?

ISB YLP is ISB Young Leaders Program which is only a different entry mode into the ISB PGP programme. The ISB YLP is not a separate programme altogether. ISB YLP offers a pathway for students in their undergraduate colleges to get into the ISB PGP even before they graduate.

How is the ISB YLP unique?

There are 3 aspects to the ISB YLP that makes it unique for applicants.


The first is the learning weekends where all of the college students will come on to ISB campus for three separate learning weekends. ISB YLP admits sit in the classes, network with current students, have a glimpse of the MBA experience and gain insights about the recent developments in the industry.


Second important aspect is the 20 months of work experience. ISB YLP is a deferred admission because admits get admitted when they apply but they join only after completing 20 months of full time work experience. During the 20 months ISB organises knowledge sessions, webinars with industry leaders, faculty and ISB alumni.


Third, the ISB YLP is a Trisep programme, which brings together a cohort of people from three different universities, one, ISB and two other internationally top ranked programmes. In the past, NUS Singapore and Tsinghua University, China have participated in this program.


The learning model at ISB YLP is designed to enable the students to ace as leaders in their professional work before they start the actual ISB PGP. Learning weekends are regularly scheduled for the selected students for a full fledged overview of the ISB experience.


The learning weekend sessions open the gates to understanding the requirements of an MBA course and opportunities to explore the career options available in the corporate world. There is a specific focus on the enhancement of communication skills and communication skills during the ISB YLP.


Access our comprehensive guide to ISB YLP process for admission 2022-23.


This is in other words comparing the one year vs two year MBA program.


In India students who are in the final year of their graduation have the option of opting for the two year MBA admission through the CAT/ XAT/ MAT etc examinations or they can opt for the ISB YLP which gives them a guaranteed admit to the ISB one year MBA. In the 2 year MBA programs from the IIMs one can enter straight after graduation, as a fresher. In the YLP entry in ISB one gets the admission offer from ISB but has to join the program after completing a work experience of at least 20 months. 

How is ISB YLP different from IIM? Is ISB better or IIM?

Top 3 differences between ISB YLP and IIM are as follows:

  1. ISB graduates get back to work in one year rather than two. This also means that apart from the time, effort, other opportunity costs you also lose one year’s salary when you opt for a two year MBA.

  2. Total number of contact hours: The classroom learning in a two year MBA programme comes to around 730 contact hours. While at ISB MBA the number of contact hours amount to around 640. In all there is roughly a difference of 80 hours in terms of contact hours between a one year and a two year MBA which is not very substantial. In other words during a two year MBA the contact hours come to around 14 while at the one year MBA at ISB the contact hours are 12 months. Therefore the one year MBA at ISB has more or less the same program but completed in a shorter timeframe.

  3. Another difference is in terms of the class composition. In the two year MBA programs a majority of the class comprises freshers, while at the ISB one year MBA program the class comprises professionals with an experience range from 2 years to 20 years.


See What People Are Saying

Shruti has been single handedly instrumental in guiding me successfully with my entire application process at ISB.

Her rich experience in this field is clearly evidenced by the methodology and hands down approach followed by her.

She has been a great mentor till date. Even after converting ISB, though the long wait for results, she always made herself available and shared updates on the same. I am still in contact with her and have been reaching out to her for any ISB and even career related doubts that arise as she is truly a champion in this field.

I have worked with Shruti ma’am for my applications. She mapped out a very systematic and step by step procedure for the whole process. She made sure that the application tells my story in the best possible manner. She took care of minute details despite the time constraints which is commendable. Her work reflects her dedication and commitment towards applicant’s goal. She ensured that I was able to bring up my strengths more clearly in my application. I can confidently say that she is the best for anyone who is looking for making a strong application.

I applied for YLP with GOALisB. The YLP process is long and requires constant support and mentorship. I could not have gotten a better coach than Shruti ma’am to help me structure my entire year. I owe my admission to GOALisB.

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