They speak roughly 50 different languages between them—from American Sign Language to Yoruba. Not only that, 70 percent of the Yale School of Management (SOM) MBA Class of 2019 speaks two languages, and more than a quarter—27 percent—speaks at least three. As their linguistic abilities might hint, the group heralds from 48 different countries, and 45 percent of the class holds non-U.S. passports.
Yale SOM Assistant Dean for Admissions Bruce Delmonico was excited to share with us earlier in the summer that application volume was up 12 percent over last year, with nearly 4,100 eager applicants vying for a spot in the class. That’s on top of a 6 percent increase last year and an astounding 25 percent increase the year before. So even though this year’s class is a little larger than last year’s—14 more students bring this year’s class to 348, up from 334 last year—that modest growth certainly didn’t keep pace with the increasing numbers of applicants flocking to Yale. So by no means was it an easy feat to snag one of the spots in the Class of 2019.
Who did snag those spots? Women make up 43 percent of the class—on par with last year, which was the highest in 20 years. That puts Yale SOM out in front of every other leading business school in this regard with the exception of Wharton and Tuck, which boast 44 percent women. U.S. students of color make up 27 percent of the class, and underrepresented U.S. students of color make up 12 percent, each figure down a percentage point from last year’s incoming class.
The median GMAT score for this year’s incoming students was 730—exactly the same as last year—but 10 points higher than the year before that. Average GMAT is also continuing to climb, coming in at 727, up from 725 last year and 722 the year before. Eighty percent of this year’s incoming class had scores somewhere between 690 and 760. Average GPA is 3.67, up a smidge from last year’s 3.65.
In terms of undergraduate majors, students who studied business and economics make up 38 percent of the class, followed by 32 percent of students who hold degrees in engineering, computer science, mathematics, or physical sciences. The remaining 30 percent of the class were humanities or social science majors. Although, as Delmonico pointed out in a blog post welcoming the new class, some defy such clear categorization, such as one incoming student who double-majored in neuroscience and saxophone performance.
Yale SOM’s published class profile doesn’t include detail about the industries students worked in before pursuing their MBA, but Delmonico’s blog post sheds some light on the subject. “Their professional credentials are equally diverse and impressive, covering all sectors and a range of industries, including large financial institutions such as Bank of America, Morgan Stanley, and Goldman Sachs; major consulting firms like McKinsey, BCG, and Deloitte; and a host of other employers such as Cummins, Google, Dropbox, Schlumberger, the Peace Corps, World Bank, Unilever, and many others,” he writes. “The class includes a Colombian tax lawyer, a Saudi hedge fund manager, professionals from public finance to the Public Theater, architects, patent holders, doctors, lawyers, an Israeli tank commander, a naval aviator, and an Army Ranger.”
Of course, there is so much more to learn about the 348 incoming students that simply can’t be captured in the traditional “by the numbers” breakdown that schools share as each class arrive on campus. Which is precisely why we’ve taken it upon ourselves to get to know a handful of the Real Humans of the Yale SOM MBA Class of 2019. Won’t you join us in finding out both what these students may share in common and what remarkable diversity they also promise to bring to campus and classroom discussion.