The Tepper MBA: What You Need To Know
Carnegie Mellon’s Graduate School of Industrial Administration was founded in 1949, and the school became the Tepper School of Business in 2004 and received STEM designation in 2019. Tepper has a reputation as a business school that sits at the intersection of business, technology, and analytics. The new “intelligent future” branding reinforces several core strengths of the Tepper School, including its emphasis on analytics, interdisciplinary learning, and the importance of human judgment in decision making.
“We balance our focus on the power of data with individualized leadership training that emphasizes empathy, self-awareness and communication skills. The future needs thinkers, leaders and innovators who thrive where data and humanity connect. We prepare Tepper MBAs to be at the forefront of this future,” says Associate Dean of Masters programs Kathryn Barraclough.
Tepper had a highly successful 2021. Applications to Tepper’s full-time MBA program jumped 17% in the past year, allowing the school to welcome its largest MBA classes ever with a cohort of 231 full-time students, a 64% increase up from 141 a year-earlier when the pandemic depressed enrollment. And although the cohort is rather large, ask Tepper MBA’s what sets their student experience apart and they will answer you with one simple word: community. Each Tepper MBA is an integral part of a tight-knit, inclusive community.
Many business schools try to foster an interdisciplinary vibe on campus, but few have gone as far as Carnegie Mellon University’s Tepper School of Business to make it a reality. Tepper says its two-year curriculum is less about gathering big data and more about making big decisions. In other words, providing MBAs the resources to take mounds of data and use it to drive a business forward. Much of the deep connections are found right on the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania campus of Carnegie Mellon where Tepper is housed.
In late 2018, Tepper opened an actual physical space to encourage crossover; the Tepper Quad, a building that houses the Tepper school and also functions as an innovation hub for the entire campus. MBA students at Tepper can also expect to find themselves working with people from the other six schools at Carnegie Mellon, including engineers, computer scientists, and designers.
As for the curriculum, in addition to traditional core courses as marketing, finance, and strategy, the Tepper MBA teaches analytics, which involves learning about subjects such as optimization and predictive modeling, in order to enhance strategic thinking and problem-solving. This is the modern evolution of the “management science” that has always underpinned a Tepper education. Through a summer internship, Full-Time MBAs gain hands-on experience in the field and industry of their interest.
A unique component of the Tepper MBA program is its mini-semester format which creates four 6.5-week mini-terms per academic year, essentially doubling the number of courses that students take each semester and a given year. This format quickens the pace of discovery, the school says, and allows its MBAs to make an immediate impact in their internships and careers. MBAs can choose from concentrations in Accounting, Business Technologies, Communications, Economics, Entrepreneurship, Finance, Health Care Analytics, Marketing, Operations Management, Operations Research, Organizational Behavior, Strategy, and Sustainability. Once three or four electives in a subject area are taken, a concentration is completed.
Students often engage in the Swartz Fellowship program that offers graduate students the opportunity to hone their business ideas through hands-on experiences, networking, mentoring, and courses in entrepreneurship.
Overall, the school has a healthy 8:1 student to faculty ratio. Tepper has 16,000 alumni and 33 alumni chapters, while CMU as a whole has 94,000, dispersed across 53 global alumni chapters. Graduates often note how friendly and helpful alumni are.
Requirements for acceptance into Tepper’s MBA program include GMAT or GRE exam scores, undergraduate transcripts, resume, at least one letter of recommendation, an essay, and an interview. The interview is behavioral in nature, asking candidates to share perspectives and experiential insights on teamwork, leadership, success, and failure.
Leadership and job searching are embedded in the MBA from day one. Grads often sing the praises of the school’s career services team, which holds 2,000 one-on-one coaching sessions per year. Over 40 clubs and societies help create a social glue that contributes to a supportive atmosphere. More than a hundred events by outside speakers each year ensure that students hear about cutting-edge issues and make lots of useful contacts.
Tepper MBA Rankings Data
Tepper MBA Employment Stats
Tepper no longer publishes in its employment report its top employers, preferring to list all of the firms that made offers to students and/or have participated in recruiting events.
MBA Program Consideration Set:
Notes: MBA Program Consideration Set: If you believe you’re a close match to this school – based on your GMAT and GPA scores, your age, and work experience – you should look at these other competitive full-time MBA programs as well. We list them by stretch, match, and safety. These options are presented on the basis of brand image and ranking status.