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Sloan School Cracks Business Week's Top 10

By Angela Liao

The Sloan School of Management recently broke into Business Week's top 10 list of best business schools in the magazine's biannual survey.

The survey reflected the opinions of randomly selected 1994 graduates from 44 top business schools, and 354 companies who recruit graduates with master of business administration degrees.

Sloan is now ranked 10th among business schools, up from 13th place in the last survey.

This increase in rankings partially reflects the new curriculum change which took place a year ago, said Professor of Management Robert B. McKersie, who presided over these changes as the deputy dean of the school from January 1990 through last summer. The new curriculum places students in specialized tracts or concentrations.

"It will take a couple more years for the changes to reflect the rankings [completely]," McKersie said.

The Sloan School prepares its students for a well-rounded education with emphasis on analytical skills and information management, as compared to other school's emphasis in general management, McKersie said.

"Sloan's focus on research, problem solving, and information management are not reflected by the Business Week survey," McKersie said. Sloan's research faculty is very strong, he added.

Along with the new Tang building under construction, Sloan has created a joint degree program on system design and management with the School of Engineering, and has expanded it's emphasis in global business education, McKersie said.

In working toward a vision of "global orientation" Sloan is expanding its focuses to countries such as Taiwan, Singapore, and the People's Republic of China, he said.

"We are also working to bring more people in from industry, and bring more students to the companies as part of the learning process," McKersie said.

"Sloan deserves to be in the top five," McKersie said. "The ranking does not reflect well the reputation of the Sloan School. The Sloan School is smaller in size as compared to the other more self-contained business schools on the list," he said.

"When I heard about the ranking, I didn't like it at all; then I heard it's the first time we broke into the top ten, and I was rather happy about it," said Alexander Voigt G.

The other schools on Business Week's list are the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School, which took the first place ranking from the three time winner Northwestern's Kellogg School (2), the University of Chicago (3), Stanford University (4), Harvard University (5), University of Michigan (6), Indiana University (7), Columbia University (8), and University of California at Los Angeles (9).

In contrast, a recent annual U.S. News and World Report survey ranked Sloan number two among business schools. U.S. News and World Report bases its rankings on a broader spectrum of criteria such as graduate salary, ratings by chief executive officer, academic reputation, average Graduate Record Examination scores, and student selectivity. Sloan missed the top ranking by less than a fraction of a point in the final average of 100 points.

The recruiters who returned the surveys agreed that the Sloan graduates were the best in terms of analytical abilities, McKersie said.