MBA Snapshot: Chicago Booth

Chicago Booth is the second oldest business school in the US behind Tuck, so they must be doing something right.  Even without its prestigious location in Hyde Park near Lake Michigan, however, Chicago would still be highly desirable as an MBA destination.  Here are three key reasons the world counts Chicago among the coveted M7 business schools.

1)      Research with an International Reach

It appears the longer a school has been around, the better known they are for academic research.  This may stem from longstanding traditions in academia, which far predate the modern MBA classroom.  But don’t think that Chicago’s academic research prowess means they are behind the times.  Chicago literally invented the Executive MBA, and understands better than anyone the importance of an innovative, global focus for business executives.  Their international focus, coupled with their penchant for heralded research has established a permanent level of respect in both business and academia.  Chicago’s dedication to international business research has also resulted in three additional campuses in London, Beijing, and Singapore.  It’s hard to turn on CNBC or Bloomberg Business Network without hearing a commentary from one of Chicago’s distinguished faculty.

2)      Quantitative Powerhouse

It’s no secret that Chicago’s MBA program is laden with quantitative analysis, so if you have Chicago on your list, you likely are self-selecting because you are naturally good at math.  Quant analysis at Chicago goes well beyond a good GMAT score, however.  Data analytics finds its way into almost every class in some form or another and is the primary decision-making tool deployed by students and faculty there.  Chicago’s reputation for finance and numbers long ago attracted the attention of A.C Neilson, a relationship and association which is still strong today. 

3)      Innovative Thought

Stemming from its roots in research, Chicago highly values the testing of ideas.  Chicago encourages all students to question assumptions and challenge ideas, but does so in an environment of collegiality, not competition.  In fact, there is a saying at Chicago, “Ideas compete, not people,” which frees students to disagree with and test each other in the classroom without fear of backlash.  Backed by the world’s most published and quoted faculty, Booth students are driven by a limitless thirst for rigorous problem solving by exhausting every possible approach before choosing the most appropriate solution.

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