Apr 3, 2012

Honey I shrunk the school! Kellogg goes smaller

In Feb 2012, the Kellogg School of Management unveiled its new strategic vision for the coming decade, called Envision Kellogg. The plan, announced by Kellogg Dean Sally Blount, contains many moving pieces, including an expanding global footprint and a complete overhaul of the school’s MBA curriculum. Most notably, Kellogg plans to shrink its two-year MBA program class size by as much as 25%, and double or even triple the size of its one-year MBA program.

There are few, if any, American one-year MBA programs as prominent the one Kellogg offers. (Among top-ranked schools, Columbia’s accelerated January-intake class is the most similar.) Recognizing this unique asset and the apparent growing popularity of accelerated MBA programs around the world, Blount is doubling down on the one-year program in an effort to further stand out vs. its U.S. competition. Its two-year full-time enrollment, which currently stands at about 1,115, may drop as low as 850. Meanwhile, the school’s one-year program class size could grow from approximately 80 students to as many as 250.

Kellogg’s One-Year MBA  2011  2010  2009  2008  2007
Class Size  85  82  80  78  74
International  52%  56%  44%  45%  39%
Applications  326  321  285  295  250
Source: Kellogg School of Management
As part of the announcement, Kellogg has published its new Envision Kellogg website, which provides more strategic background on the school’s announcement and provides more specifics about the plan. According to the site:

"Envision Kellogg follows a work plan that encompasses educational, organizational, operational and research objectives. The work plan is comprehensive in scope and innovative in its approach, reflecting our goal of reshaping Kellogg for the 21st century.

Our goal is to be the top global business school for leaders who seek to excel in the Collaboration Economy.

Kellogg will be at the forefront of thought leadership, as we have always been, as home to the world’s experts on creating lasting value in markets through deep customer and organizational insight.

Note the school’s own use of bold for the line including the phrase “Collaboration Economy”… That’s the new phrase Kellogg will be pushing to promote its view of how 21st Century business will work. Just as the school’s new emphasis on its one-year program builds on an existing strength for the school, its emphasis on teamwork (embedded in its talk about the “Collaboration Economy”) builds on another core strength of the school, which is training leaders who get things done through teamwork and collaboration.

Kellogg will also aggressively overhaul its curriculum, focusing on four main “impact areas” that the school has identified through its own research and with help from consulting firms Booz & Co., Boston Consulting Group and Deloitte:
  • Marketsm customers and growth
  • Architectures of collaboration
  • Private enterprise/public policy interface
  • Innovation and entrepreneurship
Most of the above list sounds very “buzzy,” making it hard to predict exactly how much of an impact this all with have on the school’s MBA curriculum. It will be interesting to see how these changes actually impact the school’s curriculum in the coming year.

Much has been made of the fact that Booth has stolen Kellogg’s momentum among top-ranked Chicago-based MBA programs, so it’s no surprise that Dean Blount is moving boldly. She’s off to a fast start, but it will be years before we know the full impact of the plan she announced this week.

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