In Other News… Business School Deans Discuss the Future, Harvard MBA Students Help Ease Cold-Calling Pressure, and Wharton Focuses on Big Data

The business school world is constantly buzzing with change and innovation. In addition to our regular news posts, we briefly touch on a few notable stories from this dynamic field in one roundup.

  • The deans of several prestigious business schools met recently at Columbia Business School to discuss both the current state and the future of graduate business education. The deans, including Nitin Nohria of Harvard Business School (HBS) and Geoffrey Garrett of the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, participated in a panel as part of a symposium titled “A Century of Impact, a Future of Innovation.” Discussion topics included the steep cost of business school attendance, which Dean Garth Saloner of the Stanford Graduate School of Business defended: “MBA students are educated today for leadership and to manage innovation, skills they will use over their lifetime,” he said, according to a press release.
  • Cold-calling induces nervousness and sweaty palms for many business school students, while others take the practice in stride. Both groups could potentially benefit from an invention by five HBS students: the speech-tracking app Ummo. The students developed the idea after personally experiencing cold-calling in classrooms, in addition to marveling at the speech eloquence of top business executives. The app tracks one’s speech and offers notes and suggestions on pacing, “filler words” to cut, and the frequency with which particular words are used.
  • MBA students at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania can now narrow their focus on big data, as the school recently launched a new major in business analytics. The unveiling is part of an attempt to expand the school’s offerings on the subject—other proposed additions include new faculty and courses. Dean Geoffrey Garrett told the Wall Street Journal that Wharton has also begun to take further advantage of analytics within its internal processes, including matching students with their desired courses.

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