August Academy's MBA Admissions Blog

School Profile: Wharton

written by Preethi Ann Thomas

Someone once remarked,

“Law was the instrument of social change in the twentieth century, but if you want to change the world in the twenty-first century, get an MBA.”

Leading this movement of change since its establishment in 1881 is The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, a private Ivy League institution.

What it takes:

High-powered individuals with backgrounds in engineering, management, education, development, finance, investment banking, retail and so on, can pursue the Wharton MBA experience to be better equipped to pursue their dreams to innovate, inspire and initiate change in the business world.

Being one of the finest institutions to impart MBA education, Wharton, unsurprisingly, only admits 14% of the applicants. According to the Business Insider, a candidate must have seven traits to qualify for the MBA programme. Along with a great GMAT score and an impressive resume and application, innovative thinking with industry-changing potential, analytical skills, high-impact leadership skills, a collaborative nature, entrepreneurial abilities, community-oriented nature and global awareness are an absolute must to make it to Wharton.

Getting into Wharton:

We are Wharton:


US News Rankings 2015, ranks Wharton at No.3, coming close behind Stanford and Harvard.

The Programme:

The school is known for its full-time MBA and MBA for executives. The full-time MBA is a 20-month programme which includes a 3.5-month internship. Following a redesign in 2012, Wharton’s current curriculum offers more flexibility with a strong foundation in management and a variety of electives to suit individual preferences. You can pursue individual or double majors amongst a choice of 18 streams – with an entrepreneurial, marketing, consulting, retail, real estate or financial services focus.

A programme overview:

Life on Campus:

On campus, you will be amongst 858 other students who bring with them diverse backgrounds and ideas and years of work experience.

Feedback from Second-Year Wharton Students:

Eminent Faculty:

With over 225 faculty members, Wharton continues to create a priceless bank of knowledge and ideas. Their faculty members are thought leaders in their respective fields and come with a world of experience. In addition, Wharton has 20 interdisciplinary learning centres to encourage collaboration in subjects like entrepreneurship, social impact management, ethics, leadership and change management. Their courses are updated to reflect the evolving business landscape.


If you are contemplating an MBA and want to get first-hand information on Wharton, go to any of their Coffee Chats held around the world. Be prepared with a CV and application that stands out.

Dates to remember:

Round 1: September 29, 2015
Round 2: January 5, 2016
Round 3: March 30, 2016

Notable Alumni:

Wharton’s notable alumni list (with over 93,000 alumni) reads like the who’s who of the business world. The school has built a great reputation through its no-fuss but great flexibility style. Here is a snapshot:
Mortimer Zuckerman from the Class of ’61 is worth an estimated $2.4 billion. A real estate and media mogul, he owns the New York Daily News and US News and World Report. From the batch of ’63, John Sculley who is most known for his role in firing Steve Jobs, has run two great global brands — Pepsi and Apple. Harold McGraw took his family publishing business McGraw-Hill to 35 countries after he graduated in ’76. Wall Street’s most powerful woman, Ruth Porat got her MBA in 1987 and is the CFO of Morgan Stanley. Rakesh Gangwal from the Class of ’79 grew US Airways’ market cap from $800 million to $8 billion in less than three years as its CEO.

Career Prospects:

Employers globally value Wharton graduates for their strategic thinking skills, breadth of core competencies and ability to take on challenges in any field. Wharton also assists its students with career coaching through the two years. Wharton graduates are in demand because they create sustainable value for organisations around the world. According to 2014 statistics, these are the major sectors into which Wharton graduates were placed:

  • Financial services – 35.5%
    • Investment banking – 14.2%
    • Investment Management – 6.7%
    • Private Equity – 8.5%
  • Consulting – 25.9%
  • Technology – 13.7%
    • Internet Services – 10.4%
  • Consumer Products and Retail – 7.5%

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