Bay Area MBA-2

Seven things every student should know about the MBA program at Berkeley

By Susan Petty

Potential MBA candidates are likely taking a broad approach when choosing the ideal program and school. After all, your time spent obtaining an MBA will impact your day-to-day life, including the content of your education, who you spend your time with, and where you live.

That means looking at everything from curriculum and professors to location and culture to determine which MBA program satisfies your career needs best.

Here are seven reasons why the MBA program at Berkeley is considered a top choice for those striving to strengthen their professional resume and business acumen.

1. Innovative curriculum

Berkeley’s MBA program has one goal in mind: help you develop as a leader who is capable of turning innovation into measurable impact. The Berkeley Innovative Leader Development (BILD) is a connecting theme that runs through the MBA curriculum. This interdisciplinary approach to business fundamentals guides you to think differently, considering multiple perspectives.

Berkeley pushes its MBA students to go beyond coursework and discussion and to build on your knowledge through experiential learning opportunities. You have a choice of 20 applied innovation courses--and you’re welcome to take more than one. Through this experience, you’ll get the opportunity to consult with major firms in the Bay Area to take what you learn in class and apply it to working with real Silicon Valley companies.

2. Highly-skilled professors

Berkeley Haas is home to pioneering researchers, expert practitioners, and Nobel Prize recipients. MBA faculty members are more than teachers, they are scholars, researchers, and business leaders who leave a mark on each student they teach.

Our professors go beyond class lectures by requesting case studies, welcoming guest speakers, and challenging students to question the status quo during simulations.

Furthermore, Berkeley is proud to be home to five economics professors who have been recognized for their work with the Nobel Prize in Economic Studies:

3. Ever-growing—but established—network

Haas is known for having the smallest class sizes of all top business schools in the nation. Last year, Berkeley welcomed only 291 candidates to its MBA program.

Being a member of a small class means getting a chance to know everyone, forging meaningful connections, and building a strong network. Your class will form the closest circle in your network, but by graduating from Haas, you also have the advantage of becoming part of the Berkeley Alumni Network, which is nearly half a million strong.

The enviable Berkeley Haas alumni network of more than 41,000 is comprised of local and global leaders who stay connected to their alma mater to share insights, advice, contacts, and connections with Haas’ future leaders.

Haas alumni include:

  • Barbara Desoer, CEO of Citibank (MBA, 77)
  • Cathie Lesjak, CFO of Hewlett-Packard (MBA 86)
  • John Hanke, CEO of Niantic Inc. (MBA 96)
  • N. W. Jasper, President and CEO of Dolby Laboratories (MBA 71)
  • Takehiko Nakao, President, Asian Development Bank (MBA 82)

4. Strong emphasis on global learning

Berkeley recognizes the economy is increasingly global, especially given the growth of borderless digital communities.

MBA candidates can choose to pursue a global MBA, both in the classroom and across the world, through several global learning opportunities:

  • International Business Development (IBD): MBA students help clients from around the world tackle value-enhancing projects, providing experiential learning in international management consulting
  • Global Network for Advanced Management (GNAM): Students can explore how business is done around the globe via this network of top business schools across five continents
  • Exchange program: MBA students have the option to study abroad in their second year in Hong Kong, Spain, France, or England
  • MA in Global Studies: A one-year Masters program that takes an interdisciplinary approach to learning about international issues

5. Distinct culture

Berkeley is known for its distinctive culture thanks, in part, to the diversity in the student body, the curriculum, and the faculty. Your MBA experience and who you become is shaped by our four Defining Leadership Principles:

  • Question the Status Quo: Challenge convention and speak your mind. Champion bold ideas and take intelligent risks
  • Confidence without Attitude: Make decisions and act with confidence based on evidence and analytics, not arrogance
  • Students Always: Create the foundation for a lifelong pursuit of personal, professional, and intellectual growth
  • Beyond Yourself: Lead ethically and responsibly, which sometimes means putting other interests above your own

We believe the culture we cultivate at Berkeley, as shaped by our Defining Leadership Principles, creates an environment that promotes and supports teamwork, collaboration, and involvement.

6. Thriving location

Berkeley not only offers students front-row access to a region known for its scenic beauty, sophisticated culture, and engaged communities, it also happens to be located in one of the largest economies in the world: the Bay Area.

The San Francisco Bay Area is home to more than 2,000 tech companies ⁠— the densest concentration in the world. By taking advantage of programs like the Startup Lab, Haas MBA students have a chance to easily step into this booming world and benefit from incubators filled with innovative minds and trailblazers in the region both during the program and post-graduation.

7. Attractive post-graduation employment statistics

Berkeley’s MBA graduates are proof why Haas ranks among the top business schools for return on investment – in salary alone.

We know top companies seek out Haas graduates because they have a solid foundation in general management fundamentals, as well as the tools to turn vision into reality.

Class of 2018 Employment Report:

  • 94.4%: The percentage of the class who received offers up to three months after graduation from Haas
  • $125,000: Median base annual salary
  • $29,212: Mean sign-on bonus
  • 24.6%: The percentage of the class who entered into consulting
  • Top employers: Adobe, Amazon, Deloitte, Google, Tesla, Ideo, Parthenon

If you’re ready to learn more about the Berkeley Haas experience, schedule a tour or request more information today.

Learn more about the Full-Time MBA program

Posted on August 1, 2019
Themes: Haas culture
Susan Petty
Susan is Director of Admissions for the Berkeley MBA for Executives Program. She has nearly twenty years of experience in marketing and advertising, having worked in several different industries including technology, travel, healthcare -- and many others from her media planning days at J. Walter Thompson where her clients included Chevron, Kaiser Permanente, Nestle, and Ford. She enjoys advising prospective students and guiding them through their personal MBA experience.