P&Q’s Must Reads: High & Low MBA Salaries And Bonuses At The Top B-Schools

Hello everyone  –- Welcome back to Poets&Quants’ Must Reads, a quick, digestible recap of the top business school news, sponsored by CentreCourt, P&Q’s virtual admission events.

I’m your host, Kristy Bleizeffer, and I’ll be highlighting the most important P&Q stories you might have missed – but shouldn’t.

So, Let’s get to it. 


No. 1: High & Low MBA Salaries And Bonuses At The Top B-Schools

If you love reading about those big gaudy salaries MBAs can snag, this story from managing editor Mark Ethier has you covered. He breaks down the salary data from the latest ranking from U.S. News and World Report. And guess what, those salaries are still mostly rising at the top schools with some graduates scoring base salaries well over $300,000 after earning their degree. 

You can find out which schools had the highest (and the lowest) average salaries, signing bonuses, and overall compensation at poetsandquants.com.


No. 2: Former Dean Dies In Cave Diving Accident 

P&Q editor John A. Byrne reported the sad news of the accidental death of Andrew Ainslie, former dean of University of Rochester’s Simon Business School.  An avid adventurer who flew planes and gliders and spent a decade diving in caves for up to 12 hours, died in one of the caves on April 12 in Florida. He was 62.

Byrne described him as one of the few deans who truly understood the business of business education, a keen strategist and an astute marketer. He was an avid and passionate supporter of the MBA, writing essays in defense of its value when applications were on the decline.  In a time when business schools tuition seem to do nothing but rise, Ainsle cut Rochester’s by 13.6 percent, a move that resulted in an increase in both global and domestic applications. 

You can read more about Ainsle’s life and leadership, as well as some of his writings, on our homepage.


No. 3: Whistleblower Case Ends With School Paying Prof $625K

Another week, another headline about a business school ranking scandal. 

This one comes to us from the Bloch School of Management University of Missouri-Kansas City who paid a $625,000 settlement to a rankings whistleblower. 

The case dates back to 2016 when business school professor Richard Arend was fired for what the school called “a demonstrated substantial lack of fitness in the professional capacity as a teacher and researcher,” but what Arend called retaliation for calling foul on rankings data the school was submitting. Arend alleged the school was reporting inflated and even false data in research and entrepreneurship rankings for two top publications. 

Arend went public with his allegations, and the school fired him. Coincidence? He didn’t think so and sued the school in 2017. Five years later, they reached this settlement. Just goes to show that wherever there’s a business school ranking to be published, there’s likely a good, old-fashioned ranking school scandal to be revealed. You just got to wait it out. Read the full story in our MBA news tab. 


No. 4: Harvard’s Online Course Revenue Nearly Matches Its Traditional Exec Ed Business

Finally, for our last must-read story of the week, Harvard Business School’s online courses are closer than ever to surpassing revenue from traditional on-campus executive education programs.

In fact, HBS reported 112% increase in applications in 2021 as the stigma against online education continues to fade for both students and employers. HBS Online revenues hit $76 million last year, a 31% increase from the prior year and within $5 million in revenues of the school’s executive education programs which have fallen precipitously since 2019. 

What’s behind this two-sided reversal of fortune? There’s a few different factors, but you’ll need to read the full story to find out. 

Well, that’s it. Another four P&Q stories we think you shouldn’t miss. You can let us know what stories we should have mentioned but didn’t get to in the comments. 

Before I go, I want to alert all the school seekers out there to CentreCourt’s upcoming MBA Festival events. These events connect prospective students with admission experts, alumni, and career development teams at the top MBA programs around the country – and the world. 

Our next series, MBA Voices, is happening June 7-8, and you can register for free on our events tab at Poets&Quants.com. 

For new MBA admits, don’t miss our next virtual networking festival coming up May 19-20. Get a jump start on your B-school journey by forging new connections, becoming more savvy about internship and career options, and making the most of your B-school pivot. Learn more on our events page. 

Thank you for listening. Again, I’m Kristy Bleizeffer with Poets&Quants, and you can join me next week, right here, for a recap of what’s important in the world of business education. Stay informed!

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