Double-Digit Increase In Kellogg Applications

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by John A. Byrne on

Kellogg Dean Sally Blount. Photography by Nathan Mandell.

Kellogg Dean Sally Blount. Photography by Nathan Mandell.

Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management said today (May 8) that applications to all its MBA programs are up in double-digit numbers this year.

In an interview with Poets&Quants, Dean Sally Blount said that the largest single percentage rise in applications was for the school’s one-year MBA program for undergraduate business majors. Applications for the one-year offering are up 30% over last year.

Overall, applications are up 10% across all of Kellogg’s MBA programs, with a 9% increase in applications to Kellogg’s two-year MBA program (see MBA Applications Up At Many Top Schools).


Blount said that the quality of the applicant pool showed no decline despite significant increases in application volume. “It’s equivalent quality but we are also getting good two year candidates, where we have solid double-digit growth,” she added. “Our waitlist is awfully beautiful, filled with people with GMATs of 760, 740 and 720. That’s a nice waitlist. The same is true in our part-time program.”

The increase more than makes up for last year’s 7% fall in Kellogg’s full-time, two-year MBA program to 5,071 applications from 5,459. Applications to Kellogg’s one-year MBA program last year rose 6% and the school increased the size of its one-year program by 15% to a record 100 students.


Blount attributed the application increases to the efforts of a new senior leadership team at Kellogg along with “media buzz” on the school’s strategy to build enrollment in its one-year MBA offering, while shrinking enrollment in the school’s traditional two-year, full-time program.

“One of the reasons we are seeing the growth is that people are feeling the buzz,” she said. “The kind of feedback we’re getting is great. It’s the result of a lot of hard work on the part of a great team of people.”

“The increase happened before our marketing campaign,” Blount added. “We were out there talking about it in the media and we saw the driving fundamental that people in their 20s feel they have less time.” Yet, she added, 20% of the undergraduate degrees granted in the U.S. in the past 15 years have been business degrees. It’s the largest major in over three decades. We are the only top-tier school that has been in that market with this program.”

Blount said her team has been tinkering with the school’s “degree portfolio” in the last three years since she joined Kellogg from New York University where she had been dean of the undergraduate business program. “We’ve done a lot of work on how to rebalance our degree portfolio,” she said. “It is not about growth. It is how do we meet the need for the marketplace for the best students in the world. It’s all about building the best class of graduates.”


Besides the decision to increase one-year enrollment and slightly decrease the size of its two-year program, the school also has launched an accelerated part-time program which makes the one-year option available at Kellogg’s downtown Chicago building to students with undergraduate degrees in business. The school is also debuting in August a pilot one-year MS in management studies for Northwestern undergraduates with liberal arts degrees and little to no work experience. “We’ll have 30 students in the pilot. It’s the equivalent of an undergraduate business and the first year of the MBA degree.”

Kellogg is only the second major U.S. business school to establish such a degree. Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business launched a Masters of Management Studies four years ago. The first class of students will graduate from Kellogg’s pilot in May of 2014. Blount expects to enroll between 100 and 200 students in the new program annually, though it’s not yet clear how quickly Kellogg will ramp up to that level of enrollment by opening admissions to students from outside Northwestern.

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  • Me

    I see too many untrue statements about Ross, particularly about racism, I feel compelled to write MY view and share MY experience.
    I am a Latin American MBA student at Ross and I can assure the school nor its students are any more racist than any other school in the US. There are people who are racists, yes, but that kind of people are present everywhere (in any school, company or country). And they are a minority. It is true that internationals get less invitations to social events than Americans, It is also true that if you do not like to have fun the way Americans have fun (usually implies getting wasted) you won’t get invited either. We all came to America because we wanted something that we could not get i our countries. If you don’t like things of how America is you can always go back home. But you won’t get the education or the career opportunities you get here. If you want to hang out with Americans, get educated like them or get jobs in the US you will have to act like an American to some extent, you WILL have to adapt. It is hard for me too sometimes because my culture is very different, but I chose this, so I cannot complain.
    Also, if you say white people are ….. you are being racist too. There are racist white people and there are white people that are the most respectful people on earth. There are hard working Indians and lazy ones. If you put all people from a particular race in a bag just because one or a few are racist, with all do respect, you are not only being racist but also stupid. Grow up.
    I have made friends with fellow Latins, Americans and other internationals. And almost all treated me great (assholes are everywhere, including among my fellow Latin Americans). I do not like getting wasted but I hang out with Americans a lot because I enjoy other things like football, karaoke, or whatever. They have also helped me a lot in improving my English (which is clearly not that good) as well as with my career search.
    Regarding the school I must say it is great. Professors are great, facilities too and I love the program and the courses. Michigan culture is unique and so enjoyable. The big con, career services sucks. Period. They are mostly lazy, useless people. But MBA2s and alumni will compensate for this. You will have to put an extra effort to reach them out though. I got the job that I wanted, in the company I wanted (here in the US) because I did that effort and many of my colleagues did too. Most of the people who didn’t was because they didn’t realize they needed the extra effort or they were lazy.
    Ross is a great school. I do not know if it is the best or not (probably not) but I do not regret my choice at all. People are great, my academic experience has been great and I love the city and the Michigan culture. It was really the best fit for me.

  • MendozaRocks

    Ross is terrible!!!!!!

  • Tepperized

    oh here you are again mr citroen !!

  • hookemhorns612

    As somebody who is personally stressed as hell, being on Kellogg’s waitlist since last December, I wasn’t exactly pleased to read this article (probably more because of the info I didn’t want to hear). I think it’s great that the applicants are so strong and I am die hard about Kellogg, but aren’t these people supposed to draw more attention to reviewing applicant’s stories as the main focus of strong applicants? I know they didn’t rule that out, but immediately going to gmat scores to speak to the quality of applicants seems disconnected.

    I say this because I think it’s contrary to what they say (and pretty much every school says) about stats not being the important thing, but I’m still dying for an admit.

  • Renault


  • Renault

    The per capita GDP in Punjab is like $1,400. The least prosperous US state is Mississipi, with a per capita GDP of $33,000.

  • Rahul

    so true not only in ross, but in most schools including those that claim diversity such european schools.

  • Tepperized

    the two pillar of today’s business are the finance and the IT, so you agreed with us that Tepper is the top 3 school. Thank you for highlighting this to prospective applicants!

  • TA

    Tepper is top notch in finance and information sciences. It is pretty average. Otherwise . In MIS it kicks ass. Its prob better than all schools except H and S
    Ross has a massive frat culture scene which is highly segregational of international students.

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