Friday, February 13, 2009

Business School Acceptance Rates Will Be Brutal

When I got my MBA at Stanford GSB, I think the acceptance rate was around 12%. We all felt like we got in by the skin of our teeth.

In 2008, the acceptance rate at Stanford GSB was 8%. At Harvard Business School (HBS) it was 14%, and at Wharton it was 17%. Yikes.

For everything I'm hearing, this year is looking brutal. Round one results came in a few weeks ago and it looks nasty. I've heard of a lot of people that got rejected or wait listed at Stanford GSB that I think ordinarily would have gotten in; you know the type - saved babies while working at a top tier private equity firm, ran a hedge fund out of their ivy league college dorm, etc.

I guess it's not suprising that acceptance rates are low -- everyone is trying to wait out the recession from the sidelines at school. Not only that, but private equity firms, hedge funds, banks, and consulting firms have fewer job openings, releasing a flood of candidates into the market.

If I had to guess, in 2009 the MBA acceptance rates will be brutal. Here's my guess: Stanford GSB 6%, HBS 11%, Wharton 14%. Best of luck to everybody applying this year.

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