Jumping 15 spots, The Foisie Business School at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) made one of the most significant moves in this year’s ranking. Foisie improved 15 spots from last year’s ranking of 35 to No. 20. This year, Foisie had an acceptance rate of 44.97% and an average SAT score of 1336. Foisie’s best individual category was the Admissions Standards, where it placed 13th of the 93 ranked schools this year.
As a part of Worcester Polytechnic Institute, Foisie offers a business education that emphasizes innovation in the technology sector. Through a rich education of project-based work and global study opportunities, Foisie students are developed into business leaders who not only understand how businesses operate but also how to harness technology to solve complex world issues.
Foisie students can choose from four majors including Business, Industrial Engineering, Management Engineering, and Management Information Systems. Recent course additions such as “Business Applications of Machine Learning” and “Introduction to Prescriptive Analytics” highlight the business and technology-focused education at Foise. Projects are the core of the Foisie curriculum. Many courses require students to apply their knowledge from classes and labs to real-world situations.
“Project work helps students become better collaborators, critical thinkers, public speakers, and communicators — vital to success at WPI and the skills that distinguish WPI graduates throughout their careers,” Laurie Stokes, associate director of Business Programs at Worcester Polytechnic Institute, told us.
Additionally, surveyed alumni viewed their business courses quite positively. When asked to evaluate how well the Foisie business program prepared them for the world of work, 2018 alumni gave an 8.8 average rating. Alumni also rated Foisie faculty highly, giving them a 9.5 average rating for their availability for informal discussions about grades, class topics, and expectations outside of class.
MAJOR QUALIFYING PROJECT
Foisie students all take part in the Major Qualifying Project, a team-based design or research project that culminates their undergraduate education. Student teams, representing all WPI academic departments, present their project results to faculty advisors and external sponsors in the spring.
The goal of the Major Qualifying Project is for students to apply the theories and concepts learned in their business courses to solve a specific problem in the real world. And because the project is required by all undergraduates, every Foisie student graduates with experiential learning experience. Many alumni surveyed highlighted the Major Qualifying Project as a “signature experience” during their time at Foisie and credit the experience as beneficial to their careers today.
“Through my Major Qualifying Project, I was able to get hands-on experience working for MilliporeSigma that gave me invaluable skills,” one 2018 alumni told us. “With these skills I’ve been able to apply them to my current job in a different field.”
“I had the opportunity to work with Pacific Can in Beijing to improve their drying process,” another 2018 alumni said. “I was able to work side by side with their engineers, and present to the company’s leadership team. This real world business experience I believe helped distinguish myself from other candidates in interviews, and helped prepare me for the current analysis work I do at Grubhub.”
70% OF STUDENTS HAVE GLOBAL EXPERIENCE
While WPI is based in Massachusetts, Foisie students have a variety of opportunities to travel globally and immerse themselves in different cultures. Roughly 70% of Foisie students have a global experience, defined as at least four weeks of international study or at least three credits in an international setting, before they graduate.
Students can choose from more than 50 project centers across six different continents. To ensure every student has equal opportunity to partake in a global experience, WPI offers all first-year students (beginning with the Class of 2022) a Global Scholarship up to $5,000 to study abroad at one of their international project centers.
While many universities have study abroad programs for their students, WPI’s dedication to ensuring equal opportunity for all of its students is certainly something that makes Foisie stand out.
Foisie students have relatively strong employment outcomes. Some 77% of the Class of 2020 had a business-focused internship before graduation, down from 85% in 2019, though that may be attributed to the COVID-19 economic downturn. And 89.66% secured a full-time position within three months of graduation, up roughly three percentage points from last year, which was impressive considering many other schools struggled to meet the same rate as last year because of the tougher economy and market.
For those looking for a business education that is centered around business and technology with project-based work and opportunities for global study, look no further than the Foisie Business School.
“Worked on a group project for our business degree Major Qualifying Project. Our project was focused on data analytics since all our team members were majoring in information systems.”
“Worked at Millipore Sigma conducting a manufacturing optimization capstone project. Also traveled to Namibia to complete work in reducing crashes and late trains.”
“Senior capstone project allowed me to work on a technical project that had real-world benefits, challenges, and impact.”
WHERE THE CLASS OF 2020 WENT TO WORK:
Bank of America