Best P&Q UGrad B-Schools: A Conversation With Leading Deans

For the past three years, we’ve published our rankings of the Best Undergraduate Business Programs. The project is a massive undertaking and involves buy-in and cooperation from schools and their administrations as well as recent alumni. But beyond the actual ranking, we always encourage our readers to dive deeper into the data and in-depth reported school profiles that go along with the rankings. We decided to go another step this year and host a panel including deans from four of the top five schools in this year’s ranking.

This year’s video panel features Carl Zeithaml, dean of the University of Virginia’s McIntire School of Business (No. 2 in this year’s ranking), Dean Mark Taylor and Associate Dean of Undergraduate Programs Steve Malter from Washington University’s Olin Business School (No. 3), Norm Bishara, associate dean for Undergraduate Programs at Michigan’s Ross School of Business (No. 4), and Martijn Cremers, interim dean of the Mendoza College of Business at the University of Notre Dame (No. 5).


Not only does this panel represent four incredibly elite schools, but it represents different styles and communities available in the undergraduate business education market. Take Virginia McIntire, for example. The two-year program enrolls students their junior year after completing a thorough liberal arts training and prerequisites to the business portion of the four-year education. At the heart of the two-year program is the 12-year-old Integrated Core Curriculum (ICE), which has played a large role in lifting the school to the top of the student experience portion of the ranking the past two years.

Then there is Washington University’s Olin Business School, which has placed first, second, and third over the past three years of the rankings. The four-year program places students in business courses as soon as they hit campus. Also a wildly popular program among its alumni, Olin also boasts some of the most impressive admissions and employment data. As Taylor mentions in the below video, the school also features a Shakespeare Festival, in which Taylor plays an acting role.

As for Michigan’s Ross School of Business, the BBA program has recently restructured from a two-year program to a three-year program, and now what Bishara says is basically a four-year program. Like Virginia, the University of Michigan is a very elite public institution as a whole and offers all that goes with it (a college town with an exciting and successful Division One sports teams). Michigan Ross was a school that saw massive gains in this year’s survey compared to last year, turbocharging nine spots to fourth place this year, anchored by big boosts in employment scores for the Class of 2018.

And then there is Notre Dames Mendoza College, which has placed in the top five all three years we have published the ranking. Steeped in the traditions of the Congregation of Holy Cross and ideals, Cremers points out in the video that business education goes well beyond investment banking, consulting, and accounting and into social good and using business and capitalism as an agent for positive change.

Take a look at the video below and be sure to keep checking back to as we publish more articles over the coming days and weeks based on data collected from schools and alumni.

The 2018 Special Report On Undergraduate Business Education

Ranking The Best Undergraduate Business Schools In The U.S.

How We Crunched The Numbers To Come Up With Our Ranking

2018 Report Card: How Business Majors Grade Their Own Undergraduate Programs

Acceptance Rates For The Best Undergraduate Business Programs

Average SAT Scores At The Top Undergraduate Business Schools

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