During its first year of existence, Michigan Tech’s Master of Business Administration program ranked in the top 100 MBA programs around the world for its emphasis on sustainability and social/environmental issues.
The Aspen Institute’s 2007-08 edition of “Beyond Grey Pinstripes,” released on October 11, ranks Michigan Tech’s new MBA program 94th on a list of Global Top 100 Schools. More than 600 business schools were invited to participate in the biennial survey and alternative ranking conducted by the Aspen Institute’s Center for Business Education.
Christa Walck, dean of the School of Business and Economics, is thrilled with the results. “We are now on the map for sustainability in business education,” she said. “’Beyond Grey Pinstripes’ is the ranking for sustainability in business programs, and sustainability is a major strategic emphasis for Michigan Tech.
“This indicates that even a brand new and small program like ours can be recognized if we are doing the right things,” Walck went on to say. “To get this recognition from a well-recognized program like ‘Beyond Grey Pinstripes’ says we are on the right track.”
The dean said the ranking will help Michigan Tech attract faculty and students who are interested in sustainable business. “Businesses are becoming much more aware of how important it is for their processes and products to be sustainable ecologically as well as economically, so I have been encouraging School of Business and Economics faculty to incorporate sustainability concepts into their courses,” said Walck.
Provost Lesley Lovett-Doust noted, “This comes at a perfect time, when we have just announced our new Strategic Faculty Hiring Initiative, with the theme this year of sustainability. We envision strong applicants for our three endowed chairs—the Robbins Chairs in sustainability—and the seven faculty positions. This recognition should help us attract some excellent candidates for these positions, including faculty in the area of sustainable business and economics of sustainability.”
A small but growing number of business schools are leading the trend to incorporate social and environmental issues into their core curricula, the Aspen Institute reported. Society and the environment are becoming significant issues on campus, but in many schools of business, they are still confined mostly to discussions of nonprofit management, social entrepreneurship and ethics, said Rich Leimsider, director of the Aspen Institute Center for Business Education.
In “Beyond Grey Pinstripes,” success is measured by how well prepared graduates are to guide a company through the complex relationship of business and society, the environment and the well-being of communities, countries and the world. “Our National Advisory Board members have commented on the value of our students’ knowledge and experience in sustainable business practice,” Walck noted.
In the latest Aspen Institute report, as in 2005-06, Stanford University ranked first. The University of Michigan ranked second, and York University in Canada was third.