Poets&Quants Top Business Schools

Willamette University’s Atkinson Graduate School of Management

Contact our general manager with any questions. Profile updated: May 24, 2023.

School Data

Annual Tuition: $74,871

Annual Tuition Non-Resident: $46,830

Acceptance Rate: 80%

Full-Time Enrollment: 53

Average GPA: 3.28

Median GMAT: 480

Median GRE: 296

International: 23%

Minority: 31%

Female: 36%

Male: 64%

Application Deadlines: Early Action 1 - October 15, 2022 | Early Action 2 - December 15, 2022 | Early Action 3 - March 15, 2023 | Standard Deadline - May 1, 2023 | Rolling Deadline - Begins May 2, 2023

The Atkinson MBA: What You Need To Know

Willamette’s Early Career and Career Change full-time MBA is on a mission to foster experiential learning, teamwork, and, as their name suggests – prepare professionals for a career change.

The B-School is situated in Salem, Oregon, where students enjoy skiing the Cascade Mountains, visiting beautiful beaches along Oregon’s Pacific Coast, windsurfing in the picturesque Columbia River Gorge, and hiking in the many forested areas in and around Salem.

Oregon is home to a multitude of businesses including northwest legends such as Intel, Hewlett Packard, Columbia Sportswear, and Nike. Better yet, the state capitol is across the street from campus.

Throughout the 21-month program, small cohorts of around 60 students build their resumes through hands-on experience such as internships, consulting projects, and experiential electives, including a student investment fund, a venture capital course, and a philanthropic investment course.

Willamette MBAs first master the fundamental principles of management through the core curriculum. A hallmark of the Willamette core curriculum is the PACE (Practical Application for Careers and Enterprises) course, a six-month consulting project with non-profit clients that begins with practical management concepts. Throughout the curriculum, students receive guidance, reflect on their knowledge, and define their steps toward the future.

MBAs can take electives in 10 functional areas, including Entrepreneurship, Management Science & Quantitative Methods, and Public & Not-for-profit Management, among others. MBAs can complete up to 3 semesters of internship, and nearly every student chooses to complete at least one.

Willamette MBAs can partake in MBA Exchange programs in France, Denmark and China and the school offers optional international trips twice a year. As for co-curricular activities, there are professional clubs, conferences, and case competitions.

“Our Early Career/Career Change MBA program is the best of its kind in the Pacific Northwest, and one of the very best nationally, because it emphasizes applied, experiential, AND consequential learning. The consequential learning aspect is the most distinctive because very rarely do MBA students have an opportunity to immerse themselves in actually running an organization that can positively affect the community and bottom line. There’s no better way to learn to be a business professional!” says Örn B. Bodvarsson, Ph.D and Dean of the Atkinson Graduate School of Management.

Atkinson MBA Rankings Data

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Contact Information

Willamette University
900 State Street
Salem, OR 503-370-6167
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From Willamette:

At A Glance
As a national leader in experiential learning, the Willamette Early Career / Career Change (full-time) MBA builds the knowledge, experience and professional career management skills needed for students to jumpstart or change their careers in business, government and not-for-profit organizations.

The Early Career / Career Change MBA program is accredited by AACSB International for business and NASPAA for public administration. It is one of only two programs in the world accredited for both business and public administration.

#57 on Forbes (based on ROI achieved by graduates)
#78 on Poets & Quants
#81 on Businessweek (#9 for Entrepreneurship and #12 worldwide; #35 for Learning; #50 for Networking; #92 for Compensation; #27 worldwide for Inspiring and Supportive Instructors)

An outstanding program of career services supports the goals of Willamette MBA students. Services include one-on-one coaching appointments, Mentorship Program, Career Close-Up Events (Willamette MBA career fairs), Management Writing Program, Mock Interview Day, professional student organizations, and Seattle, Portland, and San Francisco Treks.

100% of Early Career/Career Change students participate in an internship. Both domestic and international students have the option to complete up to 3 semesters of internship for credit. A sample of 2019 summer internship employers includes: 3M, Hewlett Packard, Intel, Nike, PACCAR, Raymond James Financial, Slalom Consulting, Thermo Fisher, Cambia Health Solutions, Boys & Girls Club, Kaiser Permanente, Los Angeles Clean-tech Incubator, Mercy Corps, Oregon Department of Forestry, Oregon Department of Transportation, Oregon Parks and Recreation Department, United Way.

85% of Early Career/Career Change students receive a job offer within three months of graduation. Select hiring companies include: 
Charles Schwab Company
Hewlett Packard
Kaiser Permanente
State of Oregon agencies

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