Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania
|Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania|
|Type||Private business school|
|Location||Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
|Affiliations||University of Pennsylvania|
The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania (also known as the Wharton School) is the business school of the University of Pennsylvania, a private, Ivy League university in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Wharton is the United States' oldest business school and the world’s first business school affiliated with an institution of higher learning. It was established in 1881 through a donation from Joseph Wharton.3 The school's faculty is the world’s most published and most cited among business schools.4 The University of Pennsylvania, Wharton's parent institution, is America's first university,56 founded by statesman and United States' founding father Benjamin Franklin. The surrounding city of Philadelphia is known primarily for its historical significance, hosting the United States Continental Congress and serving as the location where both the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution were drafted and signed.
Wharton is widely considered to be one of the world's top business schools. Both Business Week and the Financial Times have consistently ranked Wharton among the world's top institutions for business education.7 Its undergraduate program has been ranked first in the United States by U.S. News & World Report since the rankings' inception.8 Wharton's MBA program was ranked the best in the world by the Financial Times from 2000 to 2009 and again in 2011.9 Its renowned finance curriculum consistently tops academic rankings worldwide, and Wharton has earned the number one spot in the U.S. News & World Report's "Best Finance Programs" list each consecutive year from its commencement.10 Similarly, Wharton has maintained its top position in the finance specialization rankings of the QS Global 200 Business Schools Report 2013/14, prompting QS to declare that "Wharton reigns supreme in finance, topping the table again."11 In addition, Wharton usually receives the highest reputation scores from academics and recruiters.12
Alone and in conjunction with the other schools and colleges of the university, Wharton grants BS and MBA degrees, offers a PhD program,13 and houses or co-sponsors several diploma programs. With the most electives of any business school,14 Wharton offers concentrations in accounting, business and public policy, entrepreneurial management, environmental management, finance, health care systems, human resource and organizational management, insurance and risk management, legal studies and business ethics, management, marketing, multinational management, operations and information management, real estate, retailing, statistics and strategic management.
The Wharton School publishes an online journal, Knowledge@Wharton,15 and has a newly established publishing house, Wharton School Publishing, in partnership with Pearson publishing company. Wharton maintains comprehensive financial, economics, management, marketing, and public policy databases through Wharton Research Data Services (WRDS), accompanied by research support and consulting services.16 An award-winning, patented data service originally developed in 1993 for Wharton faculty, WRDS was commercially licensed to Stanford University in 1997, followed by Harvard University and other academic institutions.17 It provides access to the broadest collection of business-related information available, exceeding 200 terabytes of peer-reviewed data, and a computing infrastructure capable of analyzing complex information at a rate of up to 400 megabytes per second.18 WRDS is currently the preferred research and analytics platform used by over 300 academic and governmental institutions worldwide, and became available to commercial institutions in 2011, in response to demand from financial institutions and industry professionals.19
- 1 History
- 2 Undergraduate program
- 3 Graduate programs
- 4 Interdisciplinary programs
- 5 Non-degree programs
- 6 General academics
- 7 Alumni network
- 8 See also
- 9 References
- 10 External links
The Wharton School was founded in 1881 by Philadelphia industrialist and philanthropist Joseph Wharton and is the world's first business school affiliated with a university.20 A native Philadelphian, Wharton became a leader in industrial metallurgy and built a fortune through his American Nickel Company and Bethlehem Steel Corporation.
The anvil, the school's symbol, reflects Wharton's pioneering work in the metal industry. Wharton envisioned creating a new foundation in order to produce educated leaders of business and government. From the founding of the school, he defined that the goal of the Wharton School of Finance and Economy was "to provide for young men special means of training and of correct instruction in the knowledge and in the arts of modern Finance and Economy, both public and private, in order that, being well informed and free from delusions upon these important subjects, they may either serve the community skillfully as well as faithfully in offices of trust, or, remaining in private life, may prudently manage their own affairs and aid in maintaining sound financial morality: in short, to establish means for imparting a liberal education in all matters concerning Finance and Economy."21
As Wharton's business grew, he recognized that business knowledge in the United States was only taught through an apprenticeship system, and such a system was not viable for creating a wider economy during the Industrial Revolution.22 After two years of planning, Wharton in 1881 founded the Wharton School through a $100,000 initial pledge. In his intentions the school would have been named the "School of Finance and Economy". The school was meant to train future leaders to conduct corporations and public organizations in a rapidly evolving industrial era. Wharton was quoted as saying that the school was mean to "instill a sense of the coming strife [in business life]: of the immense swings upward or downward that await the competent or the incompetent soldier in this modern strife."22
Early on, the Wharton School faculty was tightly connected to an influential group of businessmen, bankers and lawyers that made up the larger Philadelphia School of Political Economy.23 The faculty incorporated social sciences into the Wharton curriculum, as the field of business was still under development.
At the time of the Wharton School's founding, the idea of a collegiate business school was a novel concept. Consequently, there were no business professors, textbooks or model curricula. The Wharton School's rise transformed the study of business from a trade into a rigorous academic and research-intensive endeavor. Wharton created the first business textbooks and named Albert S. Bolles, a lawyer, as its first professor.24 The world's first business research center, the Industrial Research Unit, was established in 1921.
The Wharton School and its faculty, comprising many Nobel laureates, are accredited with pioneering and shaping emerging fields such as accounting, finance, econometrics, entrepreneurship, business law, management, marketing, insurance, real estate and operations and information management.25 Wharton was largely responsible for constructing and defining the field of finance, with its faculty having developed and popularized many of the financial and capital asset pricing models presently in use. Its alumni also exercise unparalleled influence in the financial services industry, further bolstering Wharton's prominence in this area. The faculty at Wharton invented the theories of risk-based capital standards that now define financial regulation worldwide.
Wharton began to research and teach marketing before the field existed, training executives to shape the direction of "merchandising" as the world entered the age of television and electronic commerce. Wharton professor George W. Taylor, a pioneer in the field of industrial labor relations and arbitration, served under five United States presidents and was inducted into the United States Labor Hall of Fame.26 Taylor and his colleagues at Wharton were influential in addressing the challenges of unemployment and labor strikes during the Great Depression. During World War II, Taylor served as chairman of the War Labor Board, which had the authority to regulate wages across all industries. Wharton professor Solomon S. Huebner is acknowledged as the "dean" of the life insurance industry, helping to create the profession and developing the first professional curriculum for insurance agents.27 Huebner established the Chartered Life Underwriters designation in the 1920s, now considered as the most respected designation in the field.
In 1946, the world's first electronic general-purpose computer, ENIAC, was created at the University of Pennsylvania. The Wharton School quickly realized the potential significance of information technology in the business industry, creating the first multidisciplinary programs in technology management with the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences.28 Wharton faculty began to work closely with AT&T, Merrill Lynch, MasterCard, Prudential Insurance and the New York Stock Exchange in analyzing the strategic and commercial implications of information systems.
Wharton has also been highly influential in international commerce, creating the first textbook on foreign trade. Throughout history, Wharton has played a key role in restructuring the economic systems of Brazil, Chile, South Africa, China and other emerging nations. It has also led the privatization of national industries in Turkey, Poland and surrounding Eastern European nations.29
The Wharton School's first business professor was an attorney, Albert Bolles. At the time, there were no other business schools and no business professors could be recruited elsewhere. Bolles, a lawyer by education and training, and business journalist by career, seemed to be the best option for Joseph Wharton. Bolles started his career as a lawyer in Connecticut in the second half of the 19th century. After resigning from his law firm, he started pursuing a new career in business journalism and was promoted to the editor role of Bankers Magazine in 1880, a trade publication. Upon joining the Wharton School, he began teaching business with classes on the law of governing finance and on the processes of commercial banking. Bolles' instruction in finance was influenced by his previous experience in Bankers Magazine: he stressed conservative business practices, drawing on business history as much as he could. In his classes, inflationist Congressmen were "self-interested debtors". Besides teaching, Bolles advocated for several national reforms, including the uniform banking law. Wharton historian Steven A. Sass wrote about him, "Bolles thus fulfilled Joseph Wharton's pedagogic expectations and … got the new school off to a respectable start by the spring of 1883."22 In 1884, the first five business students were awarded a Bachelor of Finance degree. One graduate, Shiro Shiba, returned to Japan where he would become a member of the Diet (the Japanese parliament), and another, Robert Adams, Jr., later was named U.S. ambassador to Brazil.23
The school's initial curriculum was close to a course of accounting and trade for medieval Italians trained as merchants. Classes in business and finance abounded at the school, but it was lacking in any other areas of business interest. Edmund James, with a doctorate from the University of Halle in Germany, reinvigorated the school's curriculum, starting classes on political finance and administration. Later in 1885, James argued for redesigning the course of study at Wharton with elements of German higher education. He wanted to include training in banking, railroading, merchandising, manufacturing and other similar branches, and expand the course's length to four years from the initial three. Joseph Wharton in November 1893 pledged an additional $75,000 to the school in order to implement James' ideas in the school's curriculum. A more comprehensive study plan was then rolled out.22 Between 1895 and 1915, James started teaching at Wharton the new fields of finance and management as they were developing in the business world. The Wharton School improved its reputation from a bunch of academic "misfits", and some of its alumni rose in the U.S. business world.30 During this period, the school continued to attract additional faculty members and expand its research programs.31
Wharton began awarding MBA degrees in 1921.30 In 1942, during World War II, in the same fashion of other schools, Wharton's full-time faculty dropped dramatically from 165 to 39 by 1944. According to school historians, members of the faculty were called upon for special posts.32 In 1959, The Wharton School adopted the curriculum which is now taught in most major business schools: the program was changed with liberal arts education doubling to almost half of the curriculum, and the social sciences department was moved to the University of Pennsylvania School of Arts and Sciences in 1975. Since then, Wharton faculty have focused exclusively on business education.
In 1983, following a shift in its business teachings to international trade, Wharton faculty created the world's first MBA/MA program in international management. The program, called the Joseph H. Lauder Institute of Management and International Studies, was the first program designed in a business school to combine an MBA with a master's degree in language and international studies. In the intentions of the school, the course plan would have been a mix of management education and exposure to foreign countries' culture and language.33 In 1998, the School launched the WRDS (Wharton Research Data Services) through the Computing and Information Technology department.34 The service was a web-based data management system to help businesses, faculty, and students retrieve information from a variety of financial, economic, and marketing sources. The program originated from the school's early research in "heuristics" that aimed at eliminating lengthy data processing through mathematical extrapolation. After being licensed for use, it was adopted at more than 200 business schools and financial institutions around the world, including INSEAD, Harvard University, London Business School, and Stanford University.33
Prospective Wharton candidates apply in their senior year of high school either through the early decision (ED) process or regular decision (RD) process. Unlike many other undergraduate business programs where students transfer in after their freshman or sophomore year (University of Virginia's McIntire, Emory's Goizueta, UC Berkeley's Haas), Wharton applicants apply specifically for Wharton during their senior year of high school. These candidates are then grouped with a pool of applicants separate from those applying to University of Pennsylvania's College of Arts and Sciences (CAS), School of Engineering and Applied Science (SEAS), or School of Nursing.35 According to the admissions committee, Wharton candidates are assessed on academic performance, standardized testing, recommendations, extracurricular achievements, leadership and personal maturity. Overall, the committee seeks "individuals who will be future leaders."36
The admissions process for Wharton's undergraduate program is extremely competitive, with a significantly lower acceptance rate than any other undergraduate degree or MBA program in the United States. From an applicant pool of the nation's most qualified and high-achieving students, predominantly within the top percentile in regard to academic and standardized test performance, approximately 5% to 7% are successful in any given year, with international students comprising about 20% of matriculating students.37 These figures are subject to annual fluctuation in the number of applications received. Through its selective admissions process and consistently strong performance, Wharton has maintained its position as the top undergraduate business program in U.S. News & World Report since the ranking's inception.38 Students in the other three undergraduate schools who satisfy certain prerequisites may apply to transfer into Wharton or pursue a dual degree after their freshman year. Students meeting the necessary criteria must submit a detailed application to be considered by a panel of Wharton faculty. The selection process is based on a combination of objective and subjective factors, including a discernible interest in business. Successful applicants will typically have excellent academic credentials, strong extracurricular achievements and demonstrated leadership ability. Conversely, Wharton students may also transfer out of the business program into CAS or SEAS.
The specialized program at Wharton focuses on a broad range of business-related subjects. Undergraduate students earn a Bachelor of Science in Economics specifically from the Wharton School, and select a primary area of concentration. All students enroll in a core curriculum consisting of units in finance, accounting, strategic management, operations and information management, statistics, marketing, legal studies, business ethics and other compulsory subjects.39 Furthermore, each student is required to satisfy the foreign language competency requirement prior to graduation.40 This can be done by demonstrating proficiency in one of the more than 40 languages taught at the University of Pennsylvania, with a number of students studying multiple foreign languages. Communication, teamwork and leadership ability also comprise key focal points, with many core classes emphasizing relevant skills to succeed in business. Consistent with this approach, all freshmen participate in a strategy consulting project and work with a local company throughout the first semester. Students are also individually evaluated on public speaking and presentation skills at the conclusion of the project.
Potential concentrations,41 denoted as a major in the academic transcript, include Accounting, Actuarial Science, Behavioral Economics, Business and Public Policy, Environmental Policy and Management, Finance, Global Analysis, Health Care Management and Policy, Insurance and Risk Management, Legal Studies and Business Ethics, Management (with an optional specialization in Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Multinational Management, Organizational Effectiveness or Strategic Management), Electronic Commerce, Marketing, Operations and Information Management, Real Estate, Retailing, Social Impact and Statistics.
Students also have the opportunity to design an individualized concentration to accommodate their unique areas of interest.42 Additionally, students may choose a secondary concentration or alter their primary concentration as new interests develop throughout the degree program. Particular emphasis is placed on developing an international perspective, aided by the geographically diverse student body. The undergraduate curriculum requires a minimum of three global environment units, which focus on international business dynamics.43 The various international programs available at Wharton also offer students the opportunity to explore other geographic regions during their academic pursuits.
The majority of upper-level courses and specialized electives are integrated and taught in conjunction with MBA and other postgraduate students. In addition, Wharton's policy allows for cross-enrollment between its degree tracks, some of which require departmental permission.44 Students may also obtain a university minor,45 allowing them to study other subjects at the University of Pennsylvania.
As a result of the intensive business curriculum and Wharton's integrated approach between its degree tracks, an undergraduate degree from the Wharton School supplants the need for an MBA. For this reason, the vast majority of Wharton undergraduates "find that they never need to return to school for an MBA in order to advance their careers."46 A minority of students seeking to enter a different industry or field may, however, decide to earn an MBA or another postgraduate qualification later in life.
Wharton undergraduate students fare exceptionally well in the recruitment process, with most leading firms conducting on-campus interviews and aggressively competing to attract candidates for full-time positions. The timeline and procedures for on-campus recruiting and student information sessions are regulated by the Career Services Office. In 2013, 407 employers participated in the on-campus recruiting process, an increase from 391 employers in the preceding year.47 Each student received an average of 12 interviews, translating into multiple job offers. Almost 60% of Wharton's typical undergraduate class of 600 students goes into financial services, with the top sectors being investment banking, sales and trading, investment management, and the buy side. The next most common industry after investment banking is management consulting, which hires more than 20% of the students. A number of students enter marketing, sales, and the technology industry, particularly in Silicon Valley.47
In 2013, Wharton undergraduate students who accepted full-time employment earned an average starting base salary of $67,986, with an average signing bonus of $9,311 and a projected average annual bonus of $26,523. The highest reported starting base salaries, not taking additional compensation into account, were $110,000 in finance, $100,000 in management consulting, $112,000 in marketing, $100,000 in general management and $96,000 in real estate.47 The majority of positions also include an annual raise in salary and the corresponding bonus, in addition to promotions based on performance and length of employment. The top 9 employers were Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, Boston Consulting Group, JP Morgan Chase, Citigroup, Bain & Company, McKinsey & Company, The Blackstone Group and Evercore Partners, while American Express, Barclays and Credit Suisse were tied for the 10th position.
Upon arrival at the Wharton campus, each freshman is assigned to one of nine cohorts: Dinar, Dollar, Euro, Peso, Rand, Rupee, Shekel, Yen or Yuan.48 Each cohort is comprised of approximately 60 students from each class, providing students with the opportunity to meet and work with fellow Wharton undergraduates both within and outside of their own year. The Leadership and Communication course in the first semester is organized by cohort, followed by the Managerial Economics course in the second semester.
Throughout the academic year, cohorts participate in a variety of events and compete for the Cohort Cup. Activities that offer points to the winning cohort include sports competitions, the Amazing Cohort Race, scavenger hunts, bowling tournaments and a gingerbread house competition. At the end of each year, the cohort with the highest score is awarded the Cohort Cup, receiving a celebration event and cohort apparel.49
The Wharton School's primary point of distinction lies in its 18 majors, 471 standing and associated faculty, 10 academic departments, over 200 electives, 20 research centers and initiatives, and a strong international alumni network.
The school offers two paths, an MBA for full-time students and an MBA for executives.50 Students can elect to pursue double majors or individualized majors. During their first year, all students pursue a required core curriculum that covers traditional management disciplines—finance, marketing, statistics, and strategy—as well as the leadership, ethics, and communication skills needed at senior levels of management.51 Students pick electives in the second year.52
Wharton MBA's required pre-term for full-time students includes coursework, waiver testing, and the "Learning Team Retreat". Coursework includes introductory and review courses in financial accounting, microeconomics, statistics, and financial analysis. Preparatory courses cover material not included in fall coursework that students are expected to understand. In addition, pre-term includes classes on business history and languages, as well as short seminars in communication skills, computing technology, trading simulations, and career management. Students may also spend term time at INSEAD's Fontainebleau and Singapore campuses.
The top academic honor in the Wharton MBA program is the Palmer Scholar designation reserved for those graduating in the top 5% of the class. Students may also be awarded the MBA degree with honors if they graduate in the top 20% of the class. The student who receives the highest grades in the first year of the program is awarded the Ford Fellowship and is known as the Ford Fellow.
Wharton's MBA for Executives is a two-year, lockstep, weekend residential program with the same curriculum, campus classroom time, credit requirements and elective choices as the full-time MBA program. As such, this is one of the most highly sought and rigorous programs with very high selectivity (low acceptance rate). This program, for more experienced professionals, has the same campus classroom time and credit hours as the full-time program by having longer classroom hours during residential periods and running full terms during summers (when full-time students are interning). Wharton admits only one class with a single entry point every year.
In July 2009, the Wharton School announced that it would also accept the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) for future admission to its MBA program in addition to GMAT scores.53
In 2013, approximately 40% of the graduating MBA class entered the financial services industry, while 30% entered management consulting. The technology industry, the third most common field, attracted over 10% of MBA students. Over 20% of the class made the decision to work outside of the United States, with Asia being the most popular geographic location.54
In 2001 Wharton launched a new campus in San Francisco. Located in the Hills Brothers Plaza, the San Francisco campus will serve as a hub on the West coast for its students and alumni.55 As of 2012, the campus is open to Executive MBA students and to full-time MBA students, who can decide to spend the fall semester of second year of the MBA program in San Francisco (called the Semester in San Francisco Program).
For the full-time MBAs, the Semester in San Francisco program focuses on entrepreneurship, technology and venture capital. Students are accepted to the program based on a separate application where they need to demonstrate their interest in these topics.
The campus accommodates about 60 MBA students and 90 executive MBA students, along with the staff of the Wharton Executive Education and Wharton Entrepreneurship.
Wharton offers Ph.D. degrees in finance, applied economics and managerial science (as opposed to some schools, which grant DBAs). However, unlike other programs at Wharton, "the Wharton School name will not appear on your diploma", as "the University of Pennsylvania awards all research Ph.D. and master's degrees."56 It takes approximately four to six years to complete the doctoral program.
The admissions process for the Wharton doctoral program is extremely competitive. In 2010, the Ph.D. program received over 1,300 applicants for 35 spots. Applicants are expected to demonstrate exceptional quantitative abilities and most matriculants have perfect GRE Quantitative scores. Although verbal skills are somewhat less emphasized, matriculants average close to the 90th percentile on GRE Verbal scores. Most graduates of the Wharton doctoral program pursue academic careers after graduation, though some graduates choose to work in public or private sectors as well.57
Nine fields of specialization are offered by the program: Accounting, Applied Economics, Ethics & Legal Studies, Finance, Health Care Management & Economics, Management, Marketing, Operations & Information Management, and Statistics. The entering class of 2010 contained 35 students, more than half of whom were U.S. citizens. The average age of the entering student was 26. Three fourths of the 2010 class were men.58 All Wharton doctoral students are fully funded.59
Wharton lists three types of degree programs in its interdisciplinary offerings: undergraduate programs,60 MBA programs61 and the Executive Master's in Technology Management program.62 While the majority of Wharton students focus predominantly on business-related coursework, those with additional interests or unique professional backgrounds may take advantage of the numerous options available at the undergraduate and graduate levels.
Wharton undergraduates may pursue joint degrees in engineering through the Jerome Fisher Program in Management and Technology,63 international relations through the Huntsman Program in International Studies and Business,64 Nursing & Health Care Management, and a joint program in life sciences and business through the Roy and Diana Vagelos Program in Life Sciences and Management.65 Undergraduates may also, independent from these programs, pursue dual degrees with any of Penn's three other undergraduate schools.
Wharton MBA students may pursue a dual degree with the Lauder Institute, Johns Hopkins University's Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS), the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, or in one of the graduate schools at the University of Pennsylvania:
- Bioethics – MBA/MBE with Perelman School of Medicine Department of Medical Ethics & Health Policy
- Biotech – MBA/MB with the School of Engineering and Applied Science
- Design – MBA/MArch, MBA/MLA, MBA/MCP, MBA/MHP with PennDesign
- Education – MBA/MS with the Graduate School of Education
- Engineering – MBA/MSE with the School of Engineering and Applied Science
- Environmental Studies – MBA/MES with the School of Arts and Sciences
- International Studies – MBA/MA with the Lauder Institute
- Medical Sciences – MBA/MD with Perelman School of Medicine, MBA/DMD with School of Dental Medicine, and MBA/VMD, MBA/PhD,and MBA/MS with the School of Veterinary Medicine
- Law – MBA/JD with the Law School.
- Nursing – Nursing and Health Care Management, MBA/MSN, MBA/PhD with the School of Nursing
- Social Work – MBA/MSW with the School of Social Policy and Practice
Wharton co-sponsors the Executive Master's in Technology Management Program with the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. This degree prepares engineers, scientists and other research and development professionals for leadership roles in technology-based organizations. Graduates receive a Master of Science in Engineering (MSE) in the Management of Technology from Penn Engineering.
The Wharton School operates the Aresty Institute of Executive Education, a highly regarded center for post-graduate and professional advancement.66 Sharing its faculty with the full-time Wharton degree programs, the institute offers open-enrollment, semester, and custom programs in Executive Development, Advanced Management, Financial Wealth Management, and a wide variety of evolving fields.66
Founded in 1987,67 the Aresty Institute has expanded its reach from the Wharton campus to a worldwide network of programs offered under its "Global Wharton" umbrella in Asia, India, Europe, and the Middle East.68
The "Leadership in the Business World" program takes place in the summer, and is open to high school students interested in pursuing a career in business. The program is four weeks in length, held in the month of July. All of the classes are taught by Wharton faculty.
LBW gives students an introduction to undergraduate business education at Wharton. Through in-class discussions, lectures, team projects, site visits, and the final business plan project, high school students gain a business education foundation before entering college.
The Wharton Sports Business Academy is a summer program for high school students sponsored by the Wharton School and the Wharton Sports Business Initiative at the University of Pennsylvania. The program, which is for high school juniors and seniors, is 4 weeks long and held in the month of July.
WSBA provides students with an introduction to ownership, sports agents, and celebrity endorsements in the sports industry. The program links general business education to topics within the sports industry, including the collegiate, professional, and Olympic levels.
The Wharton School has 471 standing and associated faculty, including 123 international faculty.69 Its academic departments include Accounting, Business Economics and Public Policy, Finance, Health Care Management, Legal Studies and Business Ethics, Management, Marketing, Operations and Information Management, Real Estate and Statistics.70 Wharton also has 20 research centers across various disciplines, including Customer Analytics, Entrepreneurship, Environmental Management, Ethics, Family Business, Finance, Global Initiatives, Health Economics, Human Resources, Innovation Management, Insurance and Pensions, Management and Leadership, Operations Management, Public Policy, Real Estate, Retailing, Risk Management and Sports Business.71
Options for international study and experience include the Lauder Institute, the Global Immersion Program, Leadership Ventures, Global Consulting Practicum, and exchange programs with schools in 11 countries, including the alliance with a leading international business school, INSEAD.72 The Wharton International Program also provides an opportunity to integrate academic coursework with an experiential component abroad.73 Many of the core units and electives at Wharton incorporate international business issues and trends, and students are further encouraged to study abroad. Currently approved study abroad options include seven languages of instruction: English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Mandarin and Spanish.74
The Wharton School is the first school to develop a fully integrated curriculum of entrepreneurial studies.75 Today, Wharton Entrepreneurship remains one of the most influential centers of entrepreneurial research in the world.76 The Sol C. Snider Entrepreneurial Research Center is the first and largest center dedicated to entrepreneurial studies, and seeks to apply an international and collaborative approach to its research programs. Wharton's academic programs are supplemented by a number of initiatives to encourage innovation in the student body and the broader community, including the Wharton Business Plan Competition,77 the Venture Initiation Program,78 the Wharton Small Business Development Center79 and the Entrepreneur in Residence Program.80
The High Impact Growth Consulting Program at the Wharton Small Business Development Center allows undergraduate and MBA student consultants to work directly with senior leadership teams and entrepreneurs, structuring the project from beginning to end.81 Training is held at the beginning of each semester, and each student contributes to between 4 and 20 consulting projects per academic year, depending on the corresponding timeline and scope of each engagement. In the past decade, more than 20,000 businesses and entrepreneurs have benefited from the institution's services.82 In 2013, 59 graduating students from the Wharton School started their own businesses.54
The Wharton School is notorious for its competitive nature and adherence to strict grading curves. The Princeton Review publishes annual Most Competitive Students rankings based on aggregate survey data from over 19,000 students across approximately 300 business schools.83 The Wharton School was ranked first in 2009, 2010 and 2012, based on the degree of competition between students, average workload and general academic pressure. Moreover, it is the only Ivy League business school to have been ranked in the top ten. Wharton has always been placed in the top three, and only two other schools have made the list every single year. Reflecting on this issue, Poets & Quants stated that "hands down, the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School has the most competitive students."84
In order to promote a more collaborative atmosphere, the Wharton Graduate Association maintains and annually reaffirms a grade non-disclosure policy, comprised of two main principles.85 The first is to "refrain from disclosing GPAs, specific class grades, class ranking, or transcripts to potential employers until a full-time position has been offered." The second principle permits and encourages students to disclose general academic honors and distinctions.
|Business School Ranking|
|U.S. undergraduate business|
|U.S. News & World Report87||1|
|U.S. News & World Report89||3|
|U.S. News & World Report93||1|
|Wall Street Journal94||1|
|Poets & Quants95||1|
On December 5, 2003, Wharton enacted a policy of declining to actively participate in the rankings of business school programs,96 citing student privacy concerns and the arbitrary methodologies employed.97 In so doing, Wharton has joined a growing list of schools that no longer provide student or alumni information for survey purposes.98
The popular and financial press has consistently ranked Wharton as one of the world's top institutions for business education.7 The undergraduate program at the Wharton School has been ranked number one by U.S. News & World Report every single year since inception.8 Its MBA program has been ranked the best in the world by the Financial Times from 2000 to 2009, and was again ranked number one in 2011 (tied with London Business School).9 Wharton usually receives the highest reputation scores from academics and recruiters.12 According to Forbes, approximately 90% of billionaires with MBAs who derived their fortunes from finance, obtained their master's degree from one of three Ivy League schools: Harvard Business School, Columbia Business School, or Wharton.99
In finance and related fields, Wharton is widely held to be a research and teaching powerhouse. The U.S. News & World Report, QS and other organizations consistently rank Wharton as the top program worldwide in this area.1011 The New York Times has deemed Wharton's undergraduate population as "the closest thing that exists to a Wall Street farm team," while Poets & Quants has described Wharton as offering the "single best degree" for an education and career in finance, marked by an "intense, competitive culture" within the student body.100 Each year, approximately 60% of undergraduate students and 40% of MBA students enter the financial services industry. In addition, Wharton offers students over 200 electives across various disciplines, the most of any business school.101 Elective units offered by the other world-class institutions at the University of Pennsylvania are also applicable toward degree requirements.
The Wharton School's Executive MBA Program is cited by most sources as the best in the world. According to CNN, "as far as Executive MBA programs go, the Wharton version has pretty much become the gold standard. It is consistently ranked first by several sources over many years, and it attracts some of the best and brightest executives in the world."102 The Wharton School has been ranked first for its Executive MBA program in 2011, 2012 and 2013 by Poets & Quants, in an integrated ranking system that takes into account data provided by Bloomberg BusinessWeek, Wall Street Journal, Financial Times and U.S. News & World Report, providing the most comprehensive rankings available.103 Additional metrics taken into consideration include selectivity, student satisfaction rates and income statistics.
The Wharton alumni network currently has more than 92,000 members.104 The largest alumni network of any business school, its members have established more than 80 alumni clubs around the world. In addition to the annual Wharton reunion held on campus, Wharton partners with its alumni clubs to organize multiple Global Alumni Forums each year. These conferences and debates attract many prominent speakers from the international community. In 2012, the Wharton Global Alumni Forums were held in Milan, Italy105 and Jakarta, Indonesia.106 In 2013, they were held in Tokyo, Japan107 and Paris, France.108 Other past sites include San Francisco, Madrid, Seoul, Dubai, Bogota, Lima, Ho Chi Minh City, Cape Town, Hong Kong, Costa Rica and Zurich.109 The 2014 sites for the Wharton Global Alumni Forums are Panama City, Panama110 and Beijing, China.111
With a strong presence in 150 countries across six continents, the alumni network is one of the most powerful benefits of a Wharton degree. According to 2013-2014 statistics, there are approximately 79,280 alumni in North America, 5,660 in Asia, 4,510 in Europe, 1,370 in the Caribbean and Latin America, 930 in Africa and the Middle East, and 380 in Australia and New Zealand.112 Local alumni clubs provide networking opportunities, as well as other initiatives to promote mentorship and career advancement.
Wharton graduates also have access to the broader University of Pennsylvania's alumni community,113 which provides additional avenues of social and professional networking. There are currently over 130 Penn alumni regional clubs worldwide, with 55 located outside of the United States.114
Wharton alumni account for many leading figures across the finance, industry, technology, media, government, law and nonprofit sectors. Among them are founders, CEOs and Presidents of leading multinational corporations, including General Electric, Apple, Hewlett-Packard, Comcast, UBS, JPMorgan Chase, BlackRock, NASDAQ, Moelis & Company, SAC Capital Advisors, Och-Ziff Capital Management, Commerce Bancorp, Sysco, Deutsche Post, United Parcel Service, Boeing, General Dynamics, American Airlines, US Airways, Northwest Airlines, BHP Billiton, Johnson & Johnson, Medtronic, Biogen Idec, Cisco Systems, Oracle Corporation, Philips, Fuji Xerox, Pfizer, Pepsi, Loews Corporation, Wrigley Company, H&R Block, MetLife, PayPal, Tesla Motors, SpaceX, Boston Scientific, QVC, Time, McGraw-Hill, First Reserve Corporation, CBS, J.D. Power & Associates, Universal Health Services and Zynga, along with many others.
Warren Buffett, Chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, was enrolled in the undergraduate program at Wharton from 1947 to 1949, prior to transferring to the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Buffett continues to maintain a strong relationship with Wharton, visiting the school115 and personally hosting its students at Berkshire Hathaway's headquarters in Omaha, Nebraska.116 Donald Trump, Chairman and CEO of the Trump Organization, transferred to the Wharton School after two years at Fordham University, graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Economics in 1968. Donald Trump, Jr. and Ivanka Trump also earned Bachelor of Science in Economics degrees from the Wharton School, the latter having transferred after completing two years at Georgetown University. Elon Musk, founder and CEO of PayPal, Tesla Motors and SpaceX, transferred to Wharton after two years at the Queen's School of Business in Ontario, Canada, graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Economics.
The Wharton Magazine is published four times per year, not taking special issues into account, and provides relevant information to alumni worldwide.117 It is available in print and as a digital publication, and issues are mailed automatically to all alumni of the Wharton School. Knowledge@Wharton, the online journal of the Wharton School, also promotes the sharing of intellectual capital, providing access to analyses of current business trends, interviews with industry leaders and Wharton faculty, conference overviews, book reviews and a searchable database of business research articles.15 Knowledge@Wharton offers a global edition in English, as well as regional editions in Spanish, Portuguese, Simplified Chinese and Traditional Chinese.
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