MBA Admissions: Wharton and Consulting

By - Jul 8, 02:08 AM Comments [0]

WhartonA quick glance at Wharton: Wharton currently ranks in third place as one of the best business schools, according to US News & World Report (March 2012). For consulting, Poets & Quants recently ranked Wharton as eighth. In 2011, 30.1% of Wharton graduates accepted job offers in the consulting industry. 33.8 reported job functions of consulting/strategy.

Incoming Wharton Students and Consulting

The class of 2013 has an average of four years of work experience and a median GMAT score of 720.

22% of class of 2013 students entered Wharton with backgrounds in consulting. 29% have undergraduate degrees in business.

According to a Poets & Quants analysis of data from the class of 2011, Wharton produced 53% more consultants than it accepted, which is the sixth highest “conversion” rate among the schools analyzed by P&Q.

Wharton Academics Related to Consulting

Wharton has a new, updated curriculum as of 2012 that features a core curriculum with fixed, required courses to launch your MBA studies and flexible requirements that you can take anytime during your two years at Wharton and where you have different options both in terms of format and content. The core focuses on foundational analytical skills such as accounting, finance, marketing, management, operations, statistics, and microeconomics, as well as on "soft skills" like ethics, communication, and leadership skills. Students then specialize in an area of study by choosing courses that satisfy major and elective requirements. Students can major in one or two concentrations.

Majors of interest to students pursuing careers in consulting include Organizational Effectiveness, Multinational Management, Strategic Management, Health Care Management, and Information: Strategy and Economics.

Among Wharton’s almost 200 electives, courses of interest include Competitive Strategy, Information: Industry Structure and Competitive Strategy, International Development Strategy, Negotiation and Dispute Resolution, Political Environment of the Multinational Firm, Privatization: International Perspective, and Power, Influence, and Transformational Leadership.

Wharton, which offers one of the largest selection of courses of any b-school, allows students to take up to four interdisciplinary courses at any of University of Pennsylvania's other schools.

During winter and spring breaks, students may participate in one of Wharton's Global Modular Courses (GMC), courses that expose students to the "challenges and opportunities in regions undergoing rapid change." Some past modular courses of interest to consulting students include Building Future Markets (in Cape Town) and Managing in Emerging Economics: Energy & Infrastructure in Brazil (in Rio de Janeiro).

Other international opportunities for consulting students that complement Wharton's mission of "Knowledge into Action" include the following:

  • Global Consulting Practicum (GCP) – Consulting students may opt to participate in this international program during which they will consult with partner companies around the globe.
  • Wharton International Volunteer Program (WIVP) – Students involved in this initiative will travel to developing countries to promote economic development through consulting engagements.
  • In addition to these programs, there is also a semester-long foreign exchange program and a global immersion program that would suit someone in the consulting field.

Students who wish to pursue an interdisciplinary approach to international business should consider applying to the joint MBA/MA Wharton Lauder program.

Consulting-Related Clubs and Extracurricular Activities at Wharton

Top Consulting Firms Hiring at UPenn Wharton

The following list indicates the number of 2011 Wharton graduates who received jobs at top consulting firms.

  • McKinsey & Co.: 65 students
  • Boston Consulting Group: 39 students
  • Bain & Co.: 27 students
  • Accenture: 11 students
  • Deloitte Consulting, LLP: 10 students
  • Booz & Company: 8 students

For internships for the class of 2011, 16% of students landed positions in the consulting industry, with 24.7% of students reporting consulting/strategy internship functions.

The list of top consulting or strategy firms hiring interns in 2011 goes as follows:

  • McKinsey & Co.: 38 students
  • Boston Consulting Group: 29 students
  • Bain & Co.: 18 students
  • A.T. Kearney: 8 students

Are you applying to Wharton? Please see our UPenn Wharton B-School Zone and UPenn Wharton Application Packages for more information on how can help you get accepted.


This article originally appeared on the Accepted Admissions Consulting Blog, the official blog of

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