Wharton is the world’s oldest collegiate business school, part of the venerated trinity known as HSW (Harvard/Stanford/Wharton) and consistently ranked among the top three programs in global MBA rankings.
If any of the top business schools has taken the time to adjust to a post-Lehman Brothers world it is Wharton. The entrepreneurial community has surged in the past eight years, with a higher percentage of students starting a business at graduation than at Harvard Business School. The recent debut of Tangen Hall, its signature entrepreneurship space, offers further evidence of the exciting ways the business school continues to evolve beyond its roots in finance to also drive entrepreneurial innovation. The Wharton MBA Class profile also claims one of the highest percentages of women in a top MBA program, with an unprecedented eight years in a row when women made up at least 40% of the class. The introduction of a Team Based Discussion has become emblematic of Wharton’s inclusive values, which are a far cry from the outdated stereotype of a competitive student body. And the succession of Dean Erika James in July 2020, representing both the first woman and first Black person to serve as dean in Wharton’s 139-year history, positions Wharton MBA and its community even more uniquely as leaders in business advancing broader global impact.
Strengths And Specializations
General Management, Finance, Health Care, Entrepreneurship, Real Estate, Nonprofit/Social Responsibility, International Management, Economics, Big Data
The Wharton MBA program offers over 200 electives – more than any other top business school.
Number of Applicants: 7,158
MBA Class Size: 916
Sector: Financial Services 36.2%; Consulting 24.5%; Technology 16.2%; Healthcare 6.7%; Starting Own Business: 3%*
(*Note: 8% working for a startup)
Top Recruiters: McKinsey, Bain, BCG, Google, Deloitte, Amazon
Avg Base Salary: $150,000
Salary Increase: 107%
Employment in 3 months: 93.5%
Wharton School Rankings
Wharton MBA Admissions
Avg. Work Exp.: 5 yrs
Avg. GMAT: 722
Int’l Students: 19%
Female Students: 43%
Deadlines for Sept 2021-2022: R1: Sept. 8, 2021, R2: Jan. 5, 2022, R3: March 30, 2022
Sources: Wharton, BusinessWeek, Financial Times, US News, MBA50
Essay 1: What do you hope to gain professionally from the Wharton MBA? (500 words – hard cut off at 500)
Essay 2 (New in 2020): Taking into consideration your background – personal, professional, and/or academic – how do you plan to make specific, meaningful contributions to the Wharton community? (400 words – hard cut off at 400)
Required Essay for all Reapplicants: Please use this space to share with the Admissions Committee how you have reflected and grown since your previous application and discuss any relevant updates to your candidacy (e.g., changes in your professional life, additional coursework, and extracurricular/volunteer engagements). (250 words- hard cut off at 250)
Optional Essay: Please use this space to share any additional information about yourself that cannot be found elsewhere in your application and that you would like to share with the Admissions Committee. This space can also be used to address any extenuating circumstances (e.g., unexplained gaps in work experience, choice of recommenders, inconsistent or questionable academic performance, areas of weakness, etc.) that you would like the Admissions Committee to consider. (500 words – hard cut off at 500)
Read Fortuna’s Wharton MBA Essay Tips & Analysis.
Interview – Team Based Discussion
Wharton’s Team Based Discussion (TBD) has become an integral part of the MBA assessment since its roll out in 2012. It reflects the Learning Teams model at the heart of the Wharton experience, which lauds teamwork in the spirit “persuasive rather than positional leadership.” If you are invited to interview, you will participate in a team-based discussion with 5-6 other applicants during your scheduled session. The team-based discussion will allow you the opportunity to interact with your fellow applicants through discourse involving real-world business scenarios, which will highlight how you approach and analyze specific situations. Your discussion will have a prompt and a purpose and you will work towards a tangible outcome with your group. The team-based discussion is additive and does not replace the opportunity for an individual exchange. There will be time allotted for a short one-on-one conversation with a member of the Admissions faculty during the interview.
Fortuna Tips & Advice
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