McLean, Va.—Application volume is up substantially at business schools around the world, reflecting growing interest among students and employers in the MBA and other graduate-level degrees in management, according to a survey by the Graduate Management Admission Council
McLean, Va.—Application volume is up substantially at business schools around the world, reflecting growing interest among students and employers in the MBA and other graduate-level degrees in management, according to a survey by the Graduate Management Admission Council® (GMAC®).
Nearly two-thirds of full-time business education programs told GMAC they received more applications in 2007 than they did last year. Among part-time programs, 69 percent reported increased application levels. And 63 percent of executive MBA programs—typically geared for professionals with eight or more years of experience—said more applicants came to their doors this year compared with 2006. The data come from the 2007 GMAC Application Trends Survey.
These figures follow similarly robust increases in application levels in 2006, reflecting continued strong interest among employers in hiring business school graduates. Indeed, corporate recruiters told GMAC researchers this year that the biggest obstacle they face in hiring new MBAs is competition from other employers—and a majority of new MBA graduates reported receiving multiple job offers this year, often weeks before graduation.
“This is a very exciting time for people to be investing in themselves and preparing to move onward and upward to the next stage of their careers,” said Dave Wilson, president and chief executive officer of GMAC, a nonprofit association of leading business schools around the globe and sponsor of the Graduate Management Admission Test® (GMAT®). “It all comes down to one simple fact: Business schools are delivering great economic value to their students, and value creation is creating demand for MBA graduates.”
Application volume from women and minorities is also on the rise. About 57 percent of full-time programs, and an equal proportion of part-time programs, said they received more applications from women in 2007 than during the previous year. Nearly half of full-time programs said applications from minorities increased.
The survey shows that programs that make a special effort to recruit women—often underrepresented in business schools—have been particularly successful at increasing female application volume. For example, full-time MBA programs that actively recruit women receive an average of three times as many female applicants as programs that do not have special outreach programs aimed at women.
“At the encouragement of MBA employers and because they too want a more diverse representation of students, schools have been encouraging more women to apply to business school,” said Nicole M. Chestang, chief client officer at GMAC. “It is very encouraging that efforts to target women are having an impact. My hope is that these results will motivate even more schools to develop special outreach programs.”
The 2007 GMAC Application Trends Survey includes responses from 445 MBA and other graduate business education programs at 252 schools worldwide.
The Graduate Management Admission Council (www.gmac.com)
, based in McLean, Va., is a nonprofit education organization of leading graduate business schools worldwide dedicated to creating access to and disseminating information about graduate management education. GMAC annually surveys thousands of corporate recruiters, MBA students, and business school staff and alumni to gauge their feelings about the job market and collect other data. The organization also owns the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT), used by business schools around the world to assess applicants. The GMAT was created in 1954 and remains the first and only standardized test specifically designed for graduate business and management programs. More information on the GMAT is available at www.mba.com