The University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business becomes the latest top B-school to offer an accelerated MBA option for its own undergraduate students. The program will be an addition to the already established Chicago Booth Scholars program. If accepted into the program, third and fourth-year University of Chicago students may take up to six business courses while being an undergrad that would later count towards an MBA from Chicago’s Booth School. It would allow students to graduate in just four quarters from the full-time MBA program or seven to nine quarters in the evening and weekend MBA programs. According to the school, the average MBA completion time for traditional students is two years.
The already-established Booth Scholars Program admits undergraduate students into the full-time MBA program on a deferment basis after the admitted students gain two-to-five years of work experience. Now, students may enter the full-time MBA program within two years of graduation or the part-time MBA program within a year of graduation.
It’s a similar model that many other universities have already established. Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management has an identical program as does Duke University’s Fuqua Business School. Last month, Emory University’s Goizueta Business School announced a similar program where undergraduate students would be accepted into the full-time MBA program after two-to-five years of work experience. The program mirrors established programs at Harvard Business School and Stanford’s Graduate School of Business.
“This is just one more way that we are being of service to our undergraduate population,” Melissa Rapp, the associate director of MBA admissions at Emory’s Goizueta School said of the option at Emory. “We wanted to remove many barriers and start the conversation with them earlier. We are allowing students outside of Emory to apply, but we aren’t going to market it in an aggressive way to those students. We are open to seeing their applications.”
While not explicitly saying it, many B-schools are making these sorts of crafty adjustments to curb falling MBA applications. In addition to creating accelerated MBA admissions for undergraduate students, many schools have been gaining STEM-certification status to make the degree more attractive, particularly to international students.