The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania was the first Business School in the USA, and continues to be in the top 0.1% of Business Schools – whether graduate or undergraduate – in the world. So what is it about life at Wharton that produces one of the most committed alumni pools in the world? Here’s a closer look:
- They don’t call it the Finance School for anything. Wharton has a history of coaching for and placing its students in the top financial institutions in the world. The stats don’t lie: in the past few years, an average of almost 50% of its graduates have gone into the financial services industry, and about 20% have gone into investment banking and associated industries. In addition, its alumni list – ranging from investment legends like Warren Buffett to heads of central banks in multiple Asian countries – proves, time and again, that a large proportion of the financial leaders of tomorrow will be forged in the Business School of the University of Pennsylvania.
- But it’s not only about finance, not by a long shot. Wharton has stood out entrepreneurship and leadership focus programs, and the top consulting firms recruit from Wharton too, sometimes in even greater numbers than schools like Stanford GSB, given the larger student population at Wharton. It would, therefore, be fair to describe Wharton as a great all-round Business School, with a particular strength, or spike, in the area of finance, and distinctive strengths in every other area.
- The Wharton Economic Forum is a phenomenal effort. Creating an annual business conference that is India centric and has run for nearly 20 years is a huge achievement in itself. And when you look at the list of speakers and realize that the biggest names in India Inc, the biggest names in Indian politics, and the biggest names in Indian culture, have all been invited, you get an idea for the magnitude of the Forum. Think of it – a set of first and second-year students get together every year to create a conference attended by nearly 1000 high powered Indians from across the globe.
- The Wharton Follies is one of the best B-School theatre groups in the world. At Wharton, it’s definitely not all work and no play. In fact, the Wharton Follies (you can see some of their hilarious spoofs on YouTube) is a great way for people who like dramatics to create something really high quality.
- A lot of high academic achievers get in. Wharton has consistently admitted some of the highest GMAT scorers – the average GMAT score of entrants was 725 in 2013, which is significantly higher than many other top Business Schools. While this does not necessarily mean that the incoming class is necessarily more accomplished than that in any other top 5 schools, it definitely does mean that there are a lot of driven, ambitious people who are willing to put in the work it takes to get great academic scores.
- And the grading system might confuse even Stephen Hawking. Unlike HBS and its 1-2-3 grading system, Wharton assigns a list of grades that might confuse even a veteran movie critic. You can get an A+, if you’re very good, and an F, if you really aren’t at all. An A+ corresponds to a numerical grade of 4, and you go down in decrements of 0.3 and 0.4, through a total of 12 grades, till you reach 0.0. Sometimes, the headaches don’t stop after the exams!
Now that you’ve had a close look at Wharton, it’s time to set in place a long term plan to get there. Whether it’s exam preparation, application fine tuning, interview prep or just general guidance you’re after, our Jamboree MBA counselling experts can help.