Stanford GSB | Mr. Entrepreneurial Bassist
GMAT 740, GPA 3.61
McCombs School of Business | Ms. Second Chances
GRE 310, GPA 2.5
Rice Jones | Mr. Back To School
GRE 315, GPA 3.0
Cornell Johnson | Mr. IT To IB
GMAT 660, GPA 3.60
Kellogg | Mr. Green Business
GMAT 680, GPA 3.33; 3.9 for Masters
Duke Fuqua | Ms. Account Executive
GMAT 560, GPA 3.3
NYU Stern | Mr. Military Officer
GRE In Progress, GPA 2.88
Kellogg | Mr. Real Estate Finance
GMAT 710, GPA 3.0
Kellogg | Mr. Finance To Education
GMAT 730, GPA 3.4
Stanford GSB | Ms. Artistic Engineer
GMAT 730, GPA 9.49/10
Emory Goizueta | Mr. Multimedia
GRE 308, GPA 3.4
UCLA Anderson | Mr. Commercial Banker
GMAT 700, GPA 3.3
IU Kelley | Mr. Construction Manager
GRE 680, GPA 3.02
Harvard | Mr. Healthcare Fanatic
GMAT 770, GPA 3.46
Harvard | Mr. Sovereign Wealth Fund
GMAT 730, GPA 3.55
Harvard | Mr. Smart Operations
GMAT 760, GPA 4.0
Darden | Mr. Strategy Manager
GRE 321, GPA 3.5
Ross | Mr. Airline Engineer
GMAT 730, GPA 3.73
Stanford GSB | Mr. Corporate VC Hustler
GMAT 780, GPA 3.17
Wharton | Mr. Marketing Director
GMAT 710, GPA 3.3
Ross | Ms. Healthcare Startup
GRE 321, GPA 3.51
Georgetown McDonough | Ms. Air Force
GMAT 610, GPA 3.8
Stanford GSB | Mr. JD To MBA
GRE 326, GPA 3.01
Harvard | Mr. MacGruber
GRE 313, GPA 3.7
Berkeley Haas | Mr. Poet At Heart
GMAT 740, GPA 3.7
Yale | Mr. Ukrainian Biz Man
GRE 310, GPA 4.75 out of 5
Darden | Mr. Former Scientist
GMAT 680, GPA 3.65

Cost Of An Elite MBA Now Exceeds $200K

Most of the estimates published by business schools are for a “moderate lifestyle.” Columbia Business School estimates an MBA’s total food costs in New York City to be about $650 a month. The University of Chicago’s Booth School pegs the monthly food bill at $600. But a high-living student could blow through that in a single week. In fact, the social costs of going to an elite MBA program are often considerable, involving expensive dinners and nights out with classmates to long-weekends traveling across country and abroad.

Even necessities, such as student health insurance, can vary significantly. Stanford imposes a required $4,296 a year charge for medical coverage. At Harvard, the cost for health insurance is $2,366 a year. Estimates of living expenses—even in the same city—also can vary. NYU Stern says the annual room and board cost of an MBA is $25,986—more than $5,000 more than the estimate published by Columbia Business School.

Only one top 25 business school held the line on tuition: The University of Texas. The annual $48,832 out-of-state tuition is exactly the same as it was two years ago.

The Rising Cost Of Getting An Elite MBA Degree


SchoolTotal Cost2012 CostIncrease2014 Tuition2012 TuitionChange
  1.  New York (Stern)$203,876$184,53210.5%$121,488$113,1087.4%
  2. Stanford GSB$202,870$185,0529.6%$123,750$114,6008.0%
  3. Pennsylvania (Wharton)$195,084$180,7647.9%$136,420$124,06810.0%
  4. Columbia Business School$192,936$179,9417.2%$126,296$116,7688.2%
  5. MIT (Sloan)$192,028$177,8987.9%$127,500$116,4009.5%
  6. Harvard Business School$190,200$174,4009.1%$117,750$107,00010.0%
  7. Chicago (Booth)$189,866$177,8987.0%$123,040$116,7685.4%
  8. Dartmouth (Tuck)$187,100$174,3507.3%$123,210$112,3209.7%
  9. Northwestern (Kellogg)$177,614$168,9085.2%$123,192$113,1008.9%
10. Yale SOM$171,750NANA$117,950NANA
11. Virginia (Darden)$170,722$163,6664.3%$115,900$107,8007.5%
12. Duke (Fuqua)$169,982$150,20213.2%$116,000$105,8009.6%
13. UCLA (Anderson)$167,610$156,0847.4%$106,296NANA
14. Georgetown (McDonough)$167,020NANA$110,316NANA
15. UC-Berkeley (Haas)$165,524$159,6343.7%$114,440$107,9386.0%
16. UNC (Kenan-Flagler)$164,860$157,0485.0%$115,020$107,9846.5%
17. Cornell (Johnson)$163,784$150,6128.7%$116,384$107,5928.2%
18. Carnegie Mellon (Tepper)$160,008$157,9321.3%$116,600$109,6006.4%
19. Michigan (Ross)$159,100$147,8087.6%$119,556$110,3888.3%
20. Washington (Olin)$152,136NANA$103,000NANA
21. Vanderbilt (Owen)$150,590NANA$95,900NANA
22. Washington (Foster)$146,772NANA$88,350NANA
23. Emory (Goizueta)$144,256$134,8047.0%$96,200$89,2007.8%
24. Indiana (Kelley)$142,158NANA$51,000NANA
25. Texas-Austin (McCombs)$140,064$137,6721.7%$97.664$97,664——-

Source: Poets&Quants analysis from business school websites

Notes: All costs and tuition numbers are for non-residents


About The Author

John A. Byrne is the founder and editor-in-chief of C-Change Media, publishers of Poets&Quants and four other higher education websites. He has authored or co-authored more than ten books, including two New York Times bestsellers. John is the former executive editor of Businessweek, editor-in-chief of Businessweek. com, editor-in-chief of Fast Company, and the creator of the first regularly published rankings of business schools. As the co-founder of CentreCourt MBA Festivals, he hopes to meet you at the next MBA event in-person or online.