Thursday, May 21, 2009

Cornell Makes 15

The Consortium announced this week that Cornell's Johnson School will become its 15th school. The Consortium adds yet another top-tier school, expanding choices for top-notch potential applicants. Yale joined the Consortium last year, and its first group of Consortium students start this fall.

Adding another top school will likely increase Consortium applications, as this attracts talented applicants who otherwise pay more attention to such non-Consortium schools as Wharton, Columbia and Stanford. This makes it even harder for the best students across the country to ignore the Consortium experience, network, fellowship, and a larger slate of just-as-good business schools, such as Cornell, Dartmouth, USC, Virginia, Michigan, Yale, and others.

Adding another top school will also likely increase the total number of Consortium students. All other factors being equal, adding Cornell doesn't mean other schools will reduce their respective numbers.

By comparison, the Johnson School is not large--medium-sized by b-school standards, about 270 students in each MBA class, smaller than NYU, Carnegie Mellon or Michigan, but slightly larger than Dartmouth.

It has sponsored a notable pipeline of alumni to careers in finance, as expected with Wall Street being not too far away. The CEO's of Kraft and Sprint Nextel are Cornell MBA alums. And large numbers of senior bankers at Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan and Morgan Stanley went to Cornell. The current head of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland is a Johnson alum.

Cornell no doubt helped its bid to become a Consortium school in part because of an exceptional emphasis on diversity. It maintains a highly regarded Office of Diversity and Inclusion--whose objectives and programs complement what the Consortium is all about.

Also worth noting is the fact that it graduated its first black MBA almost 60 years years ago, Wilbur Parker, class of '50, who after Cornell went into public service holding senior positions in the city of Newark.
Tracy Williams

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