Meet The MIT Sloan MBA Class of 2017

Members of the Class of 2017 at MIT's Sloan School of Management

Members of the Class of 2017 at MIT’s Sloan School of Management

Some people picture MIT as a refuge for mad coders and engineers. Wired off Mountain Dew – and seeing less light than Dracula – they drive themselves to exhaustion, unraveling those miniscule details that hold back the grandest ambitions. In reality, MIT is a magnet for the inventive and the curious. Forget left brained and socially awkward. Instead, imagine a haven for those who think different, who follow their own paths and bring their passions to life.

The Sloan School of Management is an extension of such a spirit. Following the motto of “Mens et Manus” (Translation: “Mind and Hand”), Sloan has established a curriculum based on the principle of “learning by doing.” Rather than mimicking the case-driven approach of its Cambridge neighbor, Sloan relies heavily on team projects, often in partnership with established companies and fledgling entrepreneurs. In fact, Sloan’s curriculum is designed so students can create their own experience. All core courses are completed in the first semester, giving students greater choice and the flexibility to pursue their interests sooner. Even more, there are no forced grading curves at Sloan, fostering collaboration over competition. At the same time, the school prides itself on its academic prowess. Here, grades matter – with MBA students required to maintain a B average to graduate.


Maura Herson

Maura Herson

Theory integrated with practice. Academic rigor coupled with a scrumptious range of options. These are among the biggest draws for MBA students who enroll at MIT. And this is particularly true for the next wave of “Sloanies” who stepped onto campus in August. “The MIT Sloan Class of 2017 is extremely optimistic about their careers and the future,” writes Maura Herson, the school’s MBA program director, in a statement to Poets&Quants. “This class came of age in much better economic times than their predecessors who received their undergraduate degrees during the financial crisis and had a much more difficult professional launch. The class also has the largest percentage of women to date, 41.4%, and [students] come from 52 countries, which makes them our most geographically diverse class yet.”

With 402 students comprising its 2017 Class, Sloan’s full-time MBA program is roughly the same size at Michigan Ross and NYU Stern. However, at 4,254 applications, it attracted 15% more applicants than Stern and 25% more than Ross. That said, the 2015-2016 application total dropped 10% from its previous year high of 4,735. Still, the 2017 Class also averaged a 716 GMAT, a point higher than incoming Columbia and Haas full-time MBAs (and three points higher than Sloan’s 2016 Class). As a result, the middle 80% of GMATs fell between 670 and 760 this year. The 2017 Class’ average undergraduate GPA – 3.6 – remained unchanged from the previous year.

The percentage of women at Sloan rose two percentage points, putting it on par with Booth and Haas. International students comprise 38% of the 2017 Class, the same as the previous year. Another 11% of the class includes underrepresented American minorities. In addition, 59% of the incoming class comes from North America, followed by East Asia (12%), Latin America and the Caribbean (10%), Europe (7%), and Western and Central Asia (6%) – with South Asia, Africa, and Oceania comprising the remaining 6%.

MIT is universally regarded as the top engineering school in the world. Not surprisingly, such prominence filters into the business school. A third of the 2017 Class majored in engineering as undergraduates. They were followed by business and commerce (21%), economics (14%), science and mathematics (14%), social sciences (10%), and the humanities (8%). On average, students bring 4.9 years of work experience, with the range being 0-15 years.

Go to next page to access student profiles of this year’s incoming class. 

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