Category Archives: School News

Enrollment Flags for Women Pursuing the MBA

As more and more business schools publish their MBA class profiles for the incoming class, it has become clear that despite all the discussion of women and MBAs of 2013, female enrollment numbers overall have …

As more and more business schools publish their MBA class profiles for the incoming class, it has become clear that despite all the discussion of women and MBAs of 2013, female enrollment numbers overall have stagnated.

While a few schools, such as UC Berkeley Haas School of Business and Emory’s Goitzueta Business School, heralded record numbers of female enrollment in the MBA Class of 2016, several notable programs—University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, Yale School of Management, and Michigan Ross School of Business—reported fewer women in this year’s entering class.

To find out why this may be happening, TopMBA.com‘s editor-in-chief Louis Lavelle spoke with Elissa Ellis Sangster, executive director of the Forté Foundation. This non-profit consortium of leading companies and top business schools works together to launch women’s careers through access to business education, opportunities, and a community of successful women.

Here is an excerpt from their interview:

LL: This year the forward momentum many business schools had been making on enrolling women seems to have stalled.  While there were a few schools with substantive improvements (…) 9 of the 14 schools I checked recently had made no improvement, or enrolled fewer women.  How are you interpreting that?

ES: I think that when I look at it as a trend we’ve been improving, but every few years we have a stagnation period. We’re at 34 to 35% now. I think what we’re seeing is there’s a limited applicant pool and that applicant pool can only produce so many women. The schools at the top are seeing the dramatic increases at the top…I think we’re going to continue to see progress but we’re going to have setbacks.

LL: Even though more women are applying to business schools, US business schools are stubbornly stuck, for the most part, at about 35% female enrollment. Why aren’t more female applicants making the cut?

ES: I think there are two things: we want to make the MBA more visible to women, but we also want them to present the best application they can. Often women will take the GMAT cold and walk away disheartened, or they’ll write an essay and won’t have anyone look at it. Through the Forte’ Foundation’s MBA Launch program, we work with women to prepare for the GMAT, assess school fit, and prepare their personal story for the applications and interviews.

LL: What can business schools do to fix this problem? Is the answer more female applicants – in the hope that a larger pool of female applicants would contain more qualified applicants who will be admitted – or is the answer somehow leveling the playing field for women in the admissions process?

ES: Obviously more women in the applicant pool is important. Schools are battling over a pool of women and those women are getting many opportunities. The problem is now we don’t have enough women to fill the demand. More women would be better for everybody. But to get women into the top 25 we have to make sure women are presenting the best applications, so that when admissions officers look at these profiles they see someone who is ready to make that MBA decision.

Lavelle and Sangster have much more to say about the state of women and business school, and I invite you to continue reading their extended Q&A here.

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HBS Dean Apologizes for School’s Sexist Attitudes

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Cornell Launches Dual Degree with CEIBS

Cornell University and the China Europe International Business School (CEIBS) have partnered to create a dual MBA and Master of Management in Hospitality (MMH) program launching in fall 2015. The dual degree will offer a …

Cornell University and the China Europe International Business School (CEIBS) have partnered to create a dual MBA and Master of Management in Hospitality (MMH) program launching in fall 2015.

The dual degree will offer a well-rounded hospitality management education with courses in operations management, organizational behavior, corporate finance, marketing, properties development and planning, managerial communication, human resource management, responsible leadership and governance, and more.

Industry projects will be an important component of the program, and students will complete an internship in hospitality or a related service industry during the summer between their first and second years.

Students will complete the MMH degree at Cornell and the MBA degree at CEIBS. Students can begin the program at either CEIBS or Cornell, spending their second year at the alternate campus.

“China is the second-largest economy in the world, and its hospitality industry is poised for dramatic expansion. As the Chinese middle class grows, domestic hospitality companies are building new brands, and international brands are expanding into the country,” says Michael D. Johnson, dean and E. M. Statler Professor at Cornell’s School of Hotel Administration.

Hellmut Schutte, CEIBS dean and Distinguished Professor of International Management, says understanding Chinese business practices is an invaluable asset, adding that the country’s service industry is becoming increasingly important.

“CEIBS is pleased to be able to collaborate with Cornell in offering this opportunity of a dual degree that aligns two very important areas,” says Schutte.

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IESE’s New Course in Social Innovation, Entrepreneurship

Spain’s IESE Business School has introduced a new MBA course in “Social Innovation and Social Entrepreneurship” that explores the connection between social and financial objectives. A total of 72 MBA students are participating in the …

Spain’s IESE Business School has introduced a new MBA course in “Social Innovation and Social Entrepreneurship” that explores the connection between social and financial objectives.

A total of 72 MBA students are participating in the inaugural class, where they will have the chance to work directly with five companies from different sectors, and discover what it means to run a social enterprise from a hands-on perspective, the school explains on its website.

Organized in groups of 10, the students will work with the five enterprises over a five to seven-week period, during which time they will contribute their own ideas, analysis and strategic plans as part of the experience.

The elective will also feature a hands-on project component, where students work directly with social enterprises and other companies to learn about how the course concepts play out in the real world.

Among the learning outcomes, MBAs will master the distinction between hybrid organization and social enterprises, how to develop strategic models that combine financial and social value, and the geo-political perspectives of social innovation.

IESE Prof. Antonino Vaccaro, director of the course, says there is a growing interest in the subject of social entrepreneurship among MBAs. “This is because a social enterprise helps people feel their lives make sense and helps them feel realized.

“What we are seeing is that many top executives who, having worked for years in multinationals, are making a financial sacrifice in order to dedicate themselves to social entrepreneurial projects because the work feels more meaningful.”

And the benefits of adopting a social focus can yield concrete results, he says.

“Companies are realizing that a positive social impact has to go beyond corporate social responsibility. Some firms are beginning to think of themselves as communities of people and are incorporating social objectives into their overall strategy. They’re also discovering that a social focus makes them more competitive.”

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UNC Kenan-Flagler’s History of Sustainable Enterprise

The University of North Carolina Kenan-Flagler Business School is celebrating its 15th anniversary as a global leader in sustainable enterprise. The school began its focus on the triple-bottom-line approach – measuring success in terms of …

kenan flagler sustainable enterprise

The University of North Carolina Kenan-Flagler Business School is celebrating its 15th anniversary as a global leader in sustainable enterprise. The school began its focus on the triple-bottom-line approach – measuring success in terms of financial profitability, ecological integrity and social equity – in 1999.

It was one of the first business schools to offer a comprehensive curriculum in sustainable enterprise that includes experiential learning, enrichment activities and career development. Today, over 550 MBA students have graduated with a concentration in sustainable enterprise and are pursuing a wide range of careers.

Leading the school’s work in education, research and outreach is the Center for Sustainable Enterprise (CSE), founded in 2001. “Sustainable enterprise is a strategic strength for UNC Kenan-Flagler,” says Al Segars, CSE faculty director, PNC Bank Distinguished Professor and chair of strategy and entrepreneurship.

Recognition of the school’s educational leadership in this area includes top rankings. Every “Beyond Grey Pinstripes” ranking by The Aspen Institute has rated UNC Kenan-Flagler among the very best in the world. The Financial Times consistently ranks the MBA program among the top 10 in corporate social responsibility and ethics, and Bloomberg Businessweek ranked Kenan-Flagler’s MBA program No. 7 globally for sustainability.

CSE initiatives with global reach include the award-winning Sustainability Leadership Capstone course, a unique model of experiential learning; the Investing for Impact Competition, in which students apply VC skills to assess socially and environmentally sustainable firms; and the MBA and undergraduate Net Impact clubs, which have received the gold chapter standing for the last three years.

“The commitment of UNC Kenan-Flagler to embedding business stewardship for the planet in the classroom experience is evident in their high performance on the Beyond Grey Pinstripes rankings of MBA programs,” says Judith Samuelson, executive director of the Business and Society Program at The Aspen Institute. “Congratulations to UNC Kenan-Flagler on 15 years of demonstrating a commitment to excellence in business education in this important arena.”

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Wharton School MBA Class of 2016 Profile

The University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School has just posted the MBA Class of 2016 profile, and here is a snap shot of a few of the more interesting data points: 40% Women 31% International students …

wharton deadlines

The University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School has just posted the MBA Class of 2016 profile, and here is a snap shot of a few of the more interesting data points:

  • 40% Women
  • 31% International students
  • 30% US students of color
  • Mean overall GMAT: 728
  • Average work experience: 5 years
  • 45% Undergrad major in Humanities, Economics, Social Science

The Round 1 deadline at the Wharton School is coming up on October 1. If you’re still putting together your application, take a look at our Wharton MBA essay tips to make sure you’re on the right track with this year’s streamlined essay prompt.

 

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A Strategy of Inspired Growth at Kellogg

This week, Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management announced it has reached several key milestones in its Envision Kellogg plan for transformation, including a new brand strategy focused on “inspiring growth.” The new brand strategy, …

Kellogg Dean Blount

This week, Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management announced it has reached several key milestones in its Envision Kellogg plan for transformation, including a new brand strategy focused on “inspiring growth.”

The new brand strategy, “brave leaders inspire growth in people, organizations and markets,” sharpens how the school articulates the Kellogg difference in developing growth-minded leaders.

“Growth has long been the imperative and continues to be the biggest challenge that every organization faces,” says Kellogg Dean Sally Blount. “But the rules have changed since 2000. Bigger is not always better.”

Kellogg has also announced the launch of a new global experiential learning program entitled International Growth Lab, a course where students from Kellogg and a network school will collaborate remotely and on the ground to develop international growth strategies for global companies. This program provides the opportunity to gain real-world experience managing diverse teams across geographic boundaries and time zones.

Blount notes that currently 125 to 150 of Kellogg’s MBA candidates are doing a quarter abroad at a partner or exchange school, while another 200 do a two-week experiential learning course abroad. “About 50% of all our MBA students are choosing to participate in these options,” the dean tells Poets & Quants.

Additionally, Kellogg has increased the size of its One-Year MBA Program by nearly 20 percent over the past two years, and will continue to evolve with the market. The two-year program will shrink slightly in what Blount calls a rebalancing of the portfolio to meet market demands.

A core tenet of the Kellogg strategic plan is its distinctive approach to thought leadership that integrates foundational departments with four cross-disciplinary initiatives: Markets and Customers; Architectures of Collaboration; Innovation and Entrepreneurship; and Public-Private Interface.

Thomas Hubbard, senior associate dean of strategic initiatives and professor of strategy at Kellogg, says, “This thought leadership translates directly into what and how we teach.” In three years, Kellogg has launched more than 55 new courses, focused on innovation and entrepreneurship, growth and scaling, and data analytics, comprising 25 percent of its total curriculum.

This includes six new courses focused on growth and scaling, ranging from scaling operations to personnel management in a rapidly growing organization, as well as three new courses in data analytics. Kellogg today offers 11 elective courses in data analytics across six foundational departments, the most robust curriculum in the industry.

Although universally known for its strength in marketing, these bold moves show Blount’s mission to change the public’s perception of the school. “We have always been a general management school,” Blount explains in Poets & Quants. “There were people in the market who tried to portray us as just a this-or-that school. That was a defensive tactic by competitors. Yes, we had stronger marketing relative to our peers, but it was a market-created perspective to categorize Kellogg as a marketing school and not make us as fierce a competitor. We have to push back on that by showing that we have never been just that.”

All of these milestones in Kellogg’s strategic plan have been enabled, at least in part, by its campaign. During the 2013-2014 academic year, Kellogg raised $47 million, bringing the capital campaign to $215 million under Dean Blount’s leadership that began in 2010. The Kellogg campaign is focused on enhancing thought leadership, increasing scholarships, expanding global connectivity and building a lakefront global hub.

“Sometimes growth means pulling back to attain greater clarity and focus,” says Dean Blount. “Our ‘inspiring growth’ brand strategy highlights the important dual meaning of the English word ‘growth’ – both in terms of increasing economic value and increasing self-knowledge and insight.”

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