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International Graduate Admissions Decline for First Time in Five Years

New survey data from the Council of Graduate Schools show that offers of admission from US graduate schools to prospective international students decreased 3 percent from 2008 to 2009, the first decline since 2004. More than half of responding institutions reported a decrease in international offers of admission. And while the survey also found a one-year 4 percent increase in international applications, the total number of international applications received in 2009 remains 5 percent below 2003 levels. The full report is available online.

Study Tracks Evolution in MBA Curricula

Nearly seven in 10 (69 percent) of MBA programs have made a significant revision to their curriculum in the past four years, and 89 percent of all MBA programs are planning curricular changes. Those findings come from the 2009 MBA Curricular Innovation Study conducted by the MBA Roundtable, a nonprofit organization focused on MBA curricular design and innovation.

The study found that the most common curricular revision was adding applied content, such as project-based courses. Other common revisions involved the integration of content across topics and disciplines.

About half of MBA programs reported that they had added leadership development offerings and provided more emphasis on global perspectives. A quarter have added an industry specialization in the past three years, most commonly in healthcare/biotech/medicine and entrepreneurship.

Fourteen percent of the programs surveyed were MBA programs that had been launched within the past three years. Most had moved from concept to enrolling students in less than 18 months, indicating a fairly rapid development cycle.

The MBA Roundtable first announced the results of the survey at GMAC’s 2009 Annual Industry Conference, held in June in Baltimore.

Darden Tests the Kindle

How ready are business students for online textbooks? To help find out, online retailer Amazon has selected the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business as the world’s only business school to participate in a two-semester test of the Kindle DX wireless reading device. The pilot at Darden will involve 62 First-Year MBA students selected at random from the full-time MBA program. Participants will use the Kindle DX throughout the 2009-2010 school year to access textbooks, case studies, newspapers, and other learning materials. Darden leaders say the pilot program is a perfect fit for the school’s sustainability initiative, which seeks to make the school a zero-waste, zero-carbon enterprise by 2020.

Business Schools Venture Into Publishing

Business schools are starting up two business publications. IESE Business School has launched IESE Insight, an online, bilingual (Spanish and English) global business management quarterly. The magazine will be free until 2010.

The Australian School of Business at the University of New South Wales and the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania are partners in a web-based business journal set to launch in early 2010. The site, Knowledge@Australian School of Business, will analyze breaking business news, economic trends, business research, and government policy in Australia and Asia. It will include text-based articles, video interviews, and audio podcasts.

In related news, India Knowledge@Wharton, part of the Wharton School's online business journal Knowledge@Wharton, has launched a comprehensive online resource for information about rural India in conjunction with The Wall Street Journal’s India homepage.

KPMG Foundation Marks 15th Year of Minority Accounting Doctoral Scholarships

The KPMG Foundation celebrated the 15th anniversary of its Minority Accounting Doctoral Scholarship program by announcing US$390,000 in scholarships to 39 minority doctoral scholars for the 2009-2010 academic year. Eight are new recipients scheduled to begin their accounting doctoral program this fall, three are new recipients who have already begun programs, and 28 are previous winners getting scholarships renewed. Each scholarship is valued at US$10,000 and is renewable annually for a total of five years. The Foundation established the scholarship program in 1994 to increase the number of minority students and professors in business schools and has since awarded US$8.7 million to minorities pursuing doctorates.

Crisis Management: Executive MBA Students Get Disaster Training

To help future EMBAs learn how to solve problems under duress, the Texas A&M University Executive MBA Program at Mays Business School sent its students for a day of exercises at Disaster City in College Station, Texas. Disaster City is a full-scale mock community designed to simulate various levels of disaster and wreckage, such as train derailments and building collapses. In early August, A&M Executive MBA students took part in a variety of drills designed to test their leadership and management skills during a crisis. The training exercise was incorporated into the EMBA curriculum partly as a result of student involvement in crisis management for their companies during Hurricane Ike in September 2008.


  • The University of Melbourne and the Melbourne Business School Limited have agreed to merge the Melbourne Business School and the Faculty of Economics and Commerce to create a new Faculty of Business and Economics at Melbourne, which will be operated by MBS Ltd.
  • With the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education now mandating accreditation for business programs by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, Millersville University has temporarily discontinued its MBA program. The school’s business administration programs are accredited by the Association of Collegiate Business Schools and Programs. Millersville Provost Vilas Prabhu said that school would seek AACSB accreditation for its undergraduate programs and looked forward to a time when “economic conditions allow us to allocate resources to upgrade the MBA program to achieve AACSB standards.”
  • The University of Miami School of Business Administration has revised its long-running Executive MBA and MBA for Working Professionals programs, enabling students to customize their curriculum with elective courses. Students in both programs will continue to matriculate and graduate in cohorts, but during two terms will take six electives. Students will vote on what electives will be offered, selecting—from among more than 40 options—16 topics that will be offered over the two elective terms.
  • In June, the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania started a program that subsidizes employer stipends for MBA summer internships.


The University of South Carolina’s Darla Moore School of Business announced in July that it had secured the US$30 million it needed to meet a match challenge from philanthropist and university trustee Darla Moore. Moore, who earned her bachelor’s degree from USC in 1975, announced a US$45 million gift to the business school in 2004 and challenged the school to raise an additional US$30 million in five years, following an initial university commitment of US$15 million.

A donation valued at C$2.5 million from a local family has enabled the Edwards School of Business at the University of Saskatchewan to establish a presence in a building in downtown Saskatoon. Recognizing the donors’ generosity, the building will be named the K.W. Nasser Centre.

The Bank of Namibia has donated N$2 million to the Namibia Business School at the University of Namibia.

Despite difficult economic times, alumni of the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College have continued a tradition of having the highest participation rate in annual giving of any business school. Sixty-five percent participated in the recent Tuck Annual Giving campaign. On average, Tuck’s annual giving rate has remained above 60 percent since 1985 and tops that of other business schools by more than 30 percentage points. More than 90 percent of Tuck alumni give to the school over their lives.

At the Haas School of Business at the University of California-Berkeley, every member of the full-time MBA class of 2009 made a pledge to the school’s annual “Lifelong Connections” fundraising campaign, achieving a 100 percent participation rate for the first time in the campaign's 21-year history.


Dartmouth College has announced a dual degree program that will enable students who earn a Dartmouth PhD in one of 16 scientific fields to also earn an accelerated MBA. The program is designed to “produce individuals who are not only thoroughly trained in a scientific discipline but also possess fundamental business and entrepreneurial skills,” said Dartmouth Provost Barry Scherr. … The University of Colorado at Boulder Leeds School of Business has unveiled a two-year Evening MBA Program. The redesigned program for working professionals moves from a three-year structure to a two-year plan that allows students to take more electives. … The Robert H. Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland has created a Center for Financial Policy. … BI Norwegian School of Management in Oslo, Nanyang Business School, NTU in Singapore, and IFP School in Paris have partnered to create an Executive MBA in Energy Management. … NUS Business School in Singapore has started a series of executive education programs for small and medium-sized businesses, some taught in Mandarin and others in English, on such topics as general management, strategic marketing, and operations. … The University of Southern California Marshall School of Business Executive Education program now offers a "Certificate of New Media Management." … The George Washington University School of Business has launched a certificate to promote corporate responsibility and sustainable social, environmental, and economic value. Requirements are based on the United Nations global initiative Principles for Responsible Management Education. … Kent State University is starting a 21-month MBA program for health care executives. … The University at Buffalo School of Management's Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership is conducting a 12-month Strategic Entrepreneurship program, designed to help local entrepreneurs build their businesses and create jobs. … The School of Management at the University of Texas at Dallas has started a Center for Responsible Business and Sustainability. … The Whitman School of Management at Syracuse University is one of four curricular partners from across SU collaborating to offer a Certificate of Advanced Study in Sustainable Enterprise. …

James Madison University has started a PhD program in strategic leadership. … George Fox University will introduce a Doctor of Business Administration degree in the spring of 2010. Replacing the university's Doctor of Management, the program is designed to equip students to research and teach a variety of business disciplines with a focus on the integration of faith and ethics into teaching practice. … The University of Michigan-Flint School of Management is partnering with the Bucharest Academy of Economic Studies in Romania. The schools will exchange faculty and students and will collaborate in instruction, research, and faculty development. … The Carey Business School at the Johns Hopkins University has started a two-year, full-time Global MBA program. … The Orfalea College of Business at the California Polytechnic State University has announced that it is studying the feasibility of offering graduate business degree programs in Santa Barbara, California, beginning in fall 2010. Cal Poly currently offers a general management MBA, an MS in Accounting/Taxation, and an MS in Business and Technology at its home campus in San Luis Obispo. … York College of the City University of New York has reorganized its academic departments into three schools, including the School of Business & Information Systems.

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