2008-2009

'Entrepreneur' Reports that WPI is Rated Among the Top 15 MBA Programs Nationwide in the Finance Category of Princeton Review Student Survey

WPI’s MBA program is one of 15 named in The Princeton Review’s "Student Opinion Honors for Business Schools" in the category of “Finance.” This rating appears in the April 2009 issue of "Entrepreneur" magazine.

WORCESTER, Mass.– March 24, 2009 -Worcester Polytechnic Institute’s (WPI) Master of Business Administration (MBA) program is one of 15 named in The Princeton Review’s "Student Opinion Honors for Business Schools" in the category of “Finance.” This rating appears in the April 2009 issue of Entrepreneur, the nation's leading publication for and about entrepreneurs. The ratings are determined by student evaluations of MBA programs nationwide.

Created and compiled by The Princeton Review, the education services company, the "Student Opinion Honors for Business Schools" are reported in six categories: Accounting, Finance, General Management, Global Management, Marketing, and Operations. Each list names the 15 graduate schools of business that were most highly rated by their students in specific categories. The business schools appear in alphabetical order on the lists, and are not ranked 1 to 15. In addition to appearing in the magazine, the lists are also posted on the Entrepreneur and Princeton Review websites.  

The Princeton Review compiled the lists using data from its national survey of 19,000 MBA students attending 296 business schools profiled in its book Best 296 Business Schools: 2009 Edition, which was published in October 2008. The 80-question survey asked students to report on classroom and campus experiences at their schools and rate their MBA programs in several areas. The Princeton Review tallied the "Student Opinion Honors" lists based on students' assessments of how well (on a five-point scale) they felt their business school courses had prepared them to succeed in each of the six areas.

"It is a wonderful honor to be recognized in these national ratings among so many other outstanding colleges and universities," said McRae C. Banks, department head and professor of entrepreneurship and strategy in the Department of Management (WPI's business school).

 "What I find especially impressive is that we achieved this rating without a major or degree in finance. From our conversation with recruiters, we attribute that to three things. First we educate our students broadly, developing them into innovative and entrepreneurial leaders for the technological world. We help students develop technical competence and business expertise, and we teach them how to integrate the two; it is a powerful blend of knowledge that simply is not found elsewhere. Second, as a result of our approach, our students look at problems very differently than most business and finance students, and it is this different perspective that financial markets, and companies, need today. Finally, our students are comfortable with numbers, with technology, and with people, all of which are important, but so rarely found, in the financial world. Yet it is precisely why our graduates are in such high demand."

In keeping with the university's history as a technological institution, every course in WPI’s MBA program is taught from a technological perspective. The WPI MBA program features a curriculum built upon a foundation of fundamental business disciplines. That foundation is enhanced by students’ freedom to choose electives that further their own goals. WPI’s MBA students can concentrate in the following areas: entrepreneurship, information security management, information technology, operations management, process design, supply chain management, technological innovation, and technology marketing. In addition to these specialization areas, MBA students can choose from more than 100 graduate electives each semester from other departments.

Even at the graduate level, learning is a hands-on experience at WPI; all MBA students undertake a Graduate Qualifying Project (GQP), where students analyze real problems for real organizations and are responsible for finding practical solutions that make a real difference. In addition, all MBA students may undertake corporate internships, and take advantage of WPI's Career Development Center. There are many opportunities for students to explore a variety of career paths or to develop skills to advance their careers.

Said Robert Franek, VP-Publisher, Princeton Review, "For nearly 20 years, our company has gathered student opinions about colleges, law and b-schools to give applicants feedback they can't find elsewhere: what the schools' own customers think of them. We salute the business schools on these lists for the outstanding job they are doing both academically and professionally in preparing their students to apply their MBA training beyond the classroom to successful job searches and productive careers. We know this will be particularly meaningful to applicants and MBA grads in these challenging economic times."

"Entrepreneurs have to become experts in virtually every area of business management,” said Amy Cooper, VP / Editor in Chief at Entrepreneur. "As a result, many may find business schools to be the right fit for their needs as a holistic means of learning how to build their companies. This is particularly true with the current challenges in the economy. With the Student Opinion Honors in Entrepreneur, they can get a good sense of what their experiences may include from students themselves, which will help readers in the overall school evaluation process."

Since 2006, Entrepreneur magazine and The Princeton Review have also partnered in reporting annual ranking lists of the "Top Entrepreneurial Colleges and Business Schools" that identify 25 undergraduate and 25 graduate schools for their outstanding entrepreneurship programs. The current lists, reported in Entrepreneur's October 2008 issue are at www.entrepreneur.com/topcolleges.

About The Princeton Review

The Princeton Review is a education services company known for its test-prep courses, education programs, admission services, and 165 books published by Random House. Among them are "Best 296 Business Schools" and "Best 174 Law Schools" – each of which include 11 ranking lists of the top 10 schools in the books in various categories based on institutional data and student surveys. The company also publishes "Best 168 Medical Schools" and "Best 368 Colleges," plus guides for college and graduate school admission exams and other resource books. The Princeton Review is not affiliated with Princeton University and it is not a magazine.

About Entrepreneur Media Inc.

Entrepreneur Media Inc. is the premier content provider for and about entrepreneurs. Our products engage and inspire every day with the advice, solutions and resources that fuel the bold and independent way entrepreneurs think. After 31 years, nobody reaches more growing businesses. As the original magazine for the small and midsize business community, Entrepreneur continues to be the definitive guide to all the diverse challenges of business ownership. Entrepreneur.com is the most widely used website by entrepreneurs and emerging businesses worldwide. Entrepreneur Press publishes the books that turn entrepreneurial skills into business success.

March 24, 2009

Contact: Eileen Brangan Mell, Director of Public Relations, +1-508-831-6785, ebmell@wpi.edu