19. University of Texas at Austin
McCombs School of Business
1 University Station, B6004
Austin, Texas 78712
Apply Online: http://new.mccombs.utexas.edu/MBA/Full-Time/Admissions/Apply.aspx
The Texas MBA—a two-year program consisting of four academic semesters—is built around four key pillars: Knowledge and Understanding; Responsibility and Integrity; Communication and Collaboration; and a Worldview of Business and Society. Students begin their academic experience in a cohort – group of about 65 students – taking all core classes together. Within each cohort, students are then divided into project teams of about five students. As project partners and study group members, cohort-mates are together from day one.
The core curriculum consists of eleven required classes taken during the first year of the MBA program. Additionally, students take three electives in the spring semester of the first year to begin to customize their degree. Throughout the rest of the program, students tailor their experience to meet their own goals and interests through 23 market-specific concentrations.
While the concentrations offered in UT-McCombs full-time MBA program are not mandatory, about half of the student body takes the option to concentrate in a specific academic discipline. The concentrations aim to position graduate for enhanced employment prospects by immersing students in the industry of their choosing.
Another means of providing an extra element of customization for McCombs MBAs are the dual-degree programs, which allow students to earn two masters degrees in a condensed amount of time. There are nine degrees offered in the dual-degree program.
AN ENGAGING LEARNING ENVIRONMENT ENHANCED BY THE UNIQUE COHORT SYSTEM
The hallmark feature of the McCombs learning environment is its cohort system. The unique system is designed to foster opportunities to build teamwork and leadership skills throughout the core MBA curriculum by matching students together in diversified and balanced groups of 65. The cohorts are created by a computer program that diversifies the groups by sorting students based on types of undergraduate degree, type of previous employment, home country and home state, gender and proposed are of concentration.
The cohort system also has a way of furthering leadership opportunities for students who enter the program with above-average levels of experience. As a result of a teamwork-oriented attitude, the students with more experience in certain areas are motivated to help students with less experience.
“The idea is that it’s almost like a leadership opportunity for some of the older MBAs in the cohort, because they already know the technical material and should be sure that their peers are up to speed,” said John C. Butler, a clinical associate professor at UT-McCombs.
From the time they are sorted into cohorts, students participate in required core courses with their home cohort. McCombs is often recognized for its pervasive collaborative environment by way of the cohort system. At the start of their time at McCombs, students connect with one another at orientation in the Cohort Olympics – an activity that encourages bonding and healthy competition. Events like this one are dotted throughout the McCombs MBA experience.
HANDS-ON EXPERIENTIAL LEARNING AND LEADERSHIP OPPORTUNITIES
The McCombs approach to experiential learning takes shape in its expansive Fellows system. The Texas MBA Fellows Programs encompass an array of internship and experiential learning opportunities across a great variety of industries. The CleanTech Fellows, for instance, selectively matches exceptional Texas MBA students with energy companies for hand-on experience. Other fellows programs, like the Corporate Finance Fellows, the Marketing Fellows, Sigma Fellows, and others all are designed in similar ways.
For those seeking experiential opportunities in the entrepreneurial realm, Texas Venture Labs connects MBA students with available resources and support for those looking to start and grow entrepreneurial/startup ventures. Jeff Schmidt, on of our senior writers here at Poets&Quants, wrote an in-depth story on the program last month. You can read his story here.
Every full-time MBA program is shaped by it’s setting, and UT-McCombs is no different. The city of Austin, often referred to as the “San Francisco of the South”, is known in recent years for it’s high tech industry and vibrant progressive community. The city is home to entrepreneurs, business leaders, artists and other professional classes that are often missed in other large American cities. The city is considered one of the more affordable in the nation. Austin was ranked the No. 2 city to buy a home by Forbes in 2012 and in the same year was also rated by Forbes as one of the best cities where a paycheck stretches the furthest. Compared to other major business centers, Austin is certainly an affordable option.
Reputation: The Latest Rankings
Parsing the Rankings:
The University of Texas at Austin has a strong year in 2014 as far as rankings go, maintaining their No. 19 spot on Poets&Quants ranking. In U.S. News & World Report, which ranks on a variety of metrics from average GMAT and GPA scores to starting salaries and job placement success, the school moved forward two spots from 17 to 15. The school also got good news from The Economist, where they moved 8 spots forward in ranking.
2014-2015 Tuition: $64,596 (resident) / $97,664 (non-resident)
Average GMAT: 690
GMAT Range (mid-80%): 640-730
Average GPA: 3.4
GPA Range (mid-80%): 2.85–3.79
Acceptance Rate: 28.5%
Class Size: 551
Mean Age: 28
2014 Average Base Salary: $107,272
2014 Average Signing Bonus: $25,139
Percentage of Class of 2014 MBAs with Job Offers at Graduation: 75%
Percentage of Class of 2014 MBAs with Job Offers Three Months Later: 91.4%
Where The Class of 2014 Went To Work:
Technology — 29%
Consulting — 24%
Financial Services — 18%
Petroleum/Energy — 9%
The Top Employers for the Class of 2014
Dell — 17
Deloitte — 17
Accenture — 7
PepsiCo — 5
Booz & Company — 4
That UT-Austin McCombs alumni network is an expansive one, with more than 89,000 alumni from the undergraduate business school and over 19,000 MBA alumni. McCombs alumni exist in leadership positions around the world and are made available to students through the McCombs Admissions Alumni Network service offered by the university.