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Poets & Quants Top Business Schools

University of Iowa’s Tippie School of Management


Location: 107 Calvin Hall, Iowa City, IA 52242-1396

Admissions Office: 319-335-3847



Tippie School of Management

The Tippie MBA uses a rolling admissions process; after application reviews begin in November, they continue until the final deadline of July 30.

At the Tippie School of Management, experiential learning is more than just a buzzword. Project learning is integrated in every one of the school’s career academies and functional tracks.

Starting in year one, every Tippie student takes a intensive course in Project Management, followed by a 16-week business consulting project with such major corporate players as GE Healthcare, Marriott, John Deere and Best Buy. Then, in year two, MBA students tackle hands-on academy projects that provide real-time applications of classroom learning in marketing, finance, or strategy, depending on which career academy you’re part of.

As is typical in many MBA programs, students complete a core group of business foundation courses in the first 16-week semester. These courses cover the functional areas critical to a strong knowledge base. This means students get to their career academy courses and consulting projects in the second semester, before their summer internship.

The plan of study encompasses 67 semester hours, including 13 required courses. The foundation courses are completed in the fall semester of year one. Advanced core courses follow in semesters 2-4, along with courses specific to your academic track, plus a number of electives you’re free to customize. Leadership, Ethics & Professionalism is required in every semester.

Rankings Analysis: The University of Iowa’s Tippie School of Management climbed three spots in Poets&Quants’ 2011 ranking of the best MBA programs in the U.S, moving to 45th place from 48 a year earlier. The improvement could be attributed to a better showing in U.S. News & World Report’s ranking. Tippie gained two places in 2011 to finish 40 from a rank of 42 in 2010.

The school also did considerably better in The Economist ranking, jumping seven places to finish 59th on the British magazine’s global list, up from 66th in 2010. Given the school’s highly reasonable tuition rates, Forbes notes that the Tippie MBA has the quickest payback of any MBA in the U.S. According to Forbes, the average Tippie MBA get a 133% salary boost five years after graduation.

Tippie has not published in its employment report its top employers, preferring to list all of the firms that hired the school’s graduates.

Annual Tuition: $19,936

Median GMAT: 670 (Avg.)

GMAT Range (mid-80%): 610-730

Average GPA: 3.24

International: 32%

Female: 26%

Male: 74%

Minority: 12%

Mean Age: 27


The Tippie MBA has been a staple in top MBA rankings for years, thanks to its small, intimate program and emphasis on hands-on learning. The program excels at personalized career preparation and placement, with consistently strong employment numbers year after year.

Tippie MBAs declare a major area after the first semester, choosing from corporate finance, investment management, marketing, supply chain & analytics, and strategic management & innovation. The program’s most renowned field of study is finance, including its award-winning Henry Fund – a student-managed endowment portfolio run by a select group of finance students.

Unique aspects to the Tippie MBA include the second-semester cross-functional consulting experience. Having a required consulting project before the internship increases marketability for Tippie MBAs, and allows them to hit the ground running in their internships.

The Tippie MBA is about more than education. 

You come to learn. You come to do. You come to become. The Tippie MBA is your two-year ticket to personal and professional transformation. It’s the opportunity to grow your abilities and your possibilities. Or to put it in the words of Tippie second-year Cody Myers, “The gap between what I wanted to do and what I was doing just kept getting bigger. Tippie changed all that.”

What about you? What change are you looking for? To move from marketing to finance? To develop executive-caliber presentation skills? To move from a seat at the side of the table to the seat at the head?

Whatever your professional goals, the Tippie MBA will propel you toward them. The decades ahead promise immense change and tremendous opportunities for those who have prepared themselves to spot them, seize them, and shape them. At Tippie, that’s the person you will become—a global business leader who not only welcomes new worlds but who brings them into being.

What Sets Tippie Apart

  • Return on Investment—Tippie graduates realize a positive return on their investment more rapidly than any other program in the country, according to ForbesU.S. News ranks Tippie #6 for best financial value.
  • Stellar Employment—Over the last five years, Tippie has consistently ranked in the top echelon of accredited MBA programs in the U.S. for employment rate three months after graduation.
  • More Hands-on Learning—Tippie MBAs man consulting teams for corporate clients during their first year in the program.  Top students can lead consulting engagements in their second year.
  • Ultra-Personal Attention —From application through graduation and beyond, Tippie offers a more personalized – and more personal – MBA experience.


If you don’t hit your stride until your second year on the job, chances are you’re already off the fast track. In today’s dynamic and competitive business environment, getting noticed in your organization means performing beyond expectations right out of the gate.

The Tippie curriculum is a three-pronged approach to business education designed with that very truth in mind.

• It starts with a core of classes built around our three Career Academies—in Finance, Marketing, and Strategic Innovation—where you’ll develop the rigorous analytical skills you’ll need to solve problems and devise strategies for a complex global economy.

• At the same time you’re building your technical aptitude, Tippie’s LEAP sequence—Leadership, Ethics, and Professionalism—will foster your soft skills.

• Finally, you’ll spend at least half your semesters at Tippie putting it all together in a series of real-world, real-time, cross-functional projects—beginning just five months after you arrive on campus.


For 2008-2012, Tippie ranked #8 in post-graduation employment rate among the top 50 U.S. MBA programs.  That’s a great stat, but ultimately, it doesn’t tell you much about Tippie’s approach.

So here it is: We’re successful because we offer a more personalized approach to career prep and employment than any other MBA program in the country.  Period.

As a Tippie student, you’ll meet with the business director of your career academy twice every semester for assessments and professional development planning. You’ll meet with your career coach as often as every other week — that’s up to 30 one-on-one meetings over two years. And you’ll have access at will to our corporate development team whose mission is to identify opportunities globally that are right not just for MBA students in general, but right for you.

If that sounds like a lot of people focused on your career, you’re right. In fact, Tippie has an average of one full-time professional focused strictly on careers for every 20 students. Whether you’re looking to move into a new field or to advance in your current one, you’ll never again have as much firepower behind your career as you will during your two years as a Tippie MBA.

View Tippie’s Employment Stats >>

View List of Hiring Companies >>

Real-World Consulting

Real-world consulting projects have become a vital element of top MBA programs in the last five years, and it’s no wonder. They’re the best tool for students to learn how to apply classroom knowledge to solve real-world business challenges.

Through Tippie’s consulting arm, the Business Solutions Center, your consulting engagements will be as real as it gets.  Here’s why:

  • Clients pay.  Tippie clients pay for MBA consulting.  The fee raises both expectations and obligations.  It also means that your clients are real corporations—a $5 billion manufacturer or a $34 billion insurer – not the local hair salon.
  • The projects are real.  BSC clients provide real, mission-critical business challenges that require MBA-level analysis.  They share meaningful, confidential data and require students to sign non-disclosure agreements.
  • Clients are engaged at the top levels.  You’re as likely to interact with VP and even C-level executives as with lower-level managers. In the past year alone, MBA consulting teams were asked to reprise final presentations for the CEOs of TIAA-CREF and Stihl North America.
  • You lead the projects.  “What’s great about BSC engagements,” says 2011 grad Meggie Scott, “is that the client’s relationship was totally with us—the students. The BSC directors guided us on a weekly basis, but they rarely participated in our calls with the client. It upped the pressure, but it made for an incredible learning experience.”

Admission Checklist

  •  Online application with one essay
  •  GMAT or GRE score
  •  TOEFL or IELTS for non-U.S. citizens (waivers available for those educated in English)
  •  Transcripts
  •  Admission interview (by invitation only)

For international applicants, unofficial versions of transcripts and GMAT/GRE score reports are sufficient for the initial stages of the application.

No minimum GPA or GMAT/GRE is required for admission. The middle 80% GMAT is 600 to 730.

Approximately 70% of admits receive merit-based financial awards. The average award value is approximately $36,482, including cash and non-cash benefits. All applicants are automatically considered for merit-based financial awards when they apply.

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