For the last few decades, Babson College has been considered a leader in entrepreneurial education, having ranked highly in the U.S. News & World Report for 24 years. And over the last decade, graduates have started more than 1,104 companies and raised more than $103 million in funding. This year was no different.
For the sixth year in a row, the Princeton Review and Entrepreneur Magazine ranked Babson College #1 on their list of Top 25 Best Undergrad Programs for Entrepreneurs, and the F.W. Olin Graduate School of Business wasn’t far behind. Olin secured the #4 spot nationally for its graduate programs for entrepreneurs, ranking above institutions such as Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management and UVA’s Darden School of Business.
In addition, a new study published in the Journal of Small Business Management ranked Babson College entrepreneurship research #7 for its global impact. The study, “Contributing Forces in Entrepreneurship Research: A Global Citation Analysis,” ranked Babson above Harvard and Stanford on this list of institutions informing entrepreneurship research worldwide.
Entrepreneurship Offerings at the F.W. Olin Graduate School of Business
There are many factors that have contributed to F.W. Olin’s strong showing in entrepreneurship.
One prominent factor is the Arthur M. Blank Center for Entrepreneurship, a hub that provides students with events, workshops, mentoring, and competitions to enhance their skills as potential venture founders. Established in 1978, the center offers more than 36 entrepreneurship-related courses to Babson graduate students.
The school was also recognized for faculty and mentorship. According to the ranking, the “entire graduate entrepreneurship faculty has started, bought, or run a successful business, and 77 individual mentors worked with students through an official sponsored school program.”
For full-time MBA students at F.W. Olin, there are two curricular ways to further their entrepreneurial pursuits.
- Entrepreneurship Concentration: Requiring nine to 12 credits, the Entrepreneurship concentration focuses on helping MBA students create, identify, assess, and act on opportunities to generate social and economic value. The 20 course options include “Entrepreneurs Inside Organizations,” “Social Entrepreneurship,” and “M&A for Entrepreneurs.”
- Entrepreneurship Intensity Track (EIT): This two-course elective series is designed for MBA students who are pursing a venture they hope to launch after graduation. The class provides mentorship, resources, and leadership.
In a news release from the university, Candida Brush, the vice provost of global entrepreneurial leadership at Babson College, spoke about the latest ranking, saying, “To be continuously recognized for our efforts in entrepreneurship education, especially by the Princeton Review and Entrepreneur magazine, is something we are extremely proud of. As a community, we strive to provide our students with the very best in education, experience, and resources—a combination that has and will help them to create great economic and social value everywhere.”
The Princeton Review developed its graduate entrepreneurship ranking based on a survey of more than 300 schools conducted during the summer of 2017. In the end, more than 40 data points were analyzed, including the percentage of faculty, students, and alumni involved in entrepreneurial endeavors; the number and reach of mentorship programs, scholarships, and grants for entrepreneurship; and the amount of school-sponsored business plan competitions.
Entrepreneurship Research at Babson College
The ranking also accounted for entrepreneurship research, reviewing 191,695 citations on 2,154 entrepreneurship articles published in leading journals from 2002 to 2013. The study then reviewed the results to assess geographic diversity, international collaboration, top research scholars, and top research institutions. Babson College came out in the top 10.
“Babson College and its faculty work diligently to produce research that is of the utmost use in studying the power of entrepreneurship globally,” said Babson College Provost Michael Johnson in a university news release. “We are proud to be recognized as one of the top 10 institutions in the world for entrepreneurship research and look forward to the impact we can continue to create in utilizing entrepreneurship as a force for great economic and social value everywhere.”
This result is driven in part by ongoing research efforts of faculty in Babson’s Entrepreneurship Division. Started 50 years ago, the Entrepreneurship Division aims to infuse entrepreneurial thought and action into the school’s curricular and co-curricular offerings.
Babson College also collaborates with London Business School to maintain the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM), a longitudinal study of entrepreneurship that began in 1999. So far this year, Babson has released three GEM reports including: GEM Global Report, GEM Special Report on Senior Entrepreneurship, and GEM Women’s Report.
The Journal of Small Business Management study also recognized Babson Professor Andrew Corbett, the chair of the Entrepreneurship Division, as one of the top 25 entrepreneurship research scholars in the world. Corbett is known for his research into the behavioral aspects of entrepreneurship as well as the role of individuals within the strategic renewal and innovations efforts of organizations.
“As a research scholar, Andrew Corbett continually creates impact above and beyond his role as chair, professor, and mentor to Babson’s Butler Launchpad accelerator entrepreneurs,” said Babson College Dean of Faculty Bala Iyer. “This global recognition as one of the top 25 authors in entrepreneurship research is well-earned—and one that brings great pride to the entire Babson community, especially its Entrepreneurship Division.”
Beyond his research, Corbett is also an entrepreneurial mentor at Butler Launchpad, a community for Babson students and alumni to explore their business ideas. The Launchpad helps budding entrepreneurs explore opportunities, build a business model, recruit team members, find investors, receive mentoring, and more. Corbett also teaches the graduate course “New Venture Creation.”
To learn more about the many entrepreneurial offerings available as a full-time MBA student at Babson College, visit the school website.