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Real Humans of Goizueta’s MBA Class of 2019

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With just 172 students in the two-year full-time MBA Class of 2019, intimate is a word that comes up frequently as many at Emory University’s Goizueta Business School describe the MBA experience. In fact, the class size was smaller than usual—down nine students from the year prior. Overall application volume fell, from 1,432 to 1,136, with the bulk of that slippage among international applicants.

Of the students in the Goizueta Class of 2019, women make up 30 percent, a six-point gain over the previous year. Associate Dean of MBA Admissions Julie Barefoot credits some of that growth to an annual Women’s Conference the school holds—which last year placed specific focus on prospective students. “It went really well and spotlighted not only current students and alumnae but also our high percentage of women faculty, not to mention our very dynamic female dean.” Goizueta may soon be among very few business schools to be led by women—with several women deans, including at Kellogg, UCLA Anderson, and Ross, all recently stepping down or announcing plans of their imminent departure.

“We could still go higher in terms of women,” acknowledged Barefoot, “but we have definitely made improvements and we have been a lot more focused, including working with Forte. We certainly plan to focus on prospective female applicants in our future Women’s Conferences as well.”

The percentage of U.S. minorities in the Class of 2019 also increased two percentage points to 12 percent, and Barefoot—speaking to us back in the summer—shared plans of hosting a conference targeting minority prospective applicants as well as a case competition geared toward Latino applicants. It’s clear that efforts to increase diversity at the school are underway and expanding.

International students make up a smaller percentage of the class—27 percent—than in previous years, in a year that gave many international applicants cause for concern with regard to pursuing a U.S. MBA program. “International enrollment was down,” acknowledged Barefoot, five percent in fact. Although the school actually welcomed students from six more countries than the year before.

In terms of the academic chops of this latest class, the average GMAT score slid a point to 682, but the average GPA rose a tenth of a point, to 3.4, which puts it ahead of rival schools like Vanderbilt and Rice.

As for the educational background the current Goizueta class brought with them to share with fellow students, business majors predominate—making up 38 percent of the class, up one point from the year before. Next up were engineering and computer science majors, comprising 22 percent of the class (a three-point year-over-year gain). As business and STEM majors grew more prominent in the Goizueta MBA Class of 2019, humanities and social science majors experienced shifts of their own. Humanities majors feel dramatically, from 13 to 6 percent, but the social sciences made up some of that slippage, rising from 10 to 18 percent.

What did the Goizueta MBA Class of 2019 do before heading to business school? Here they are a largely equal mix. Former consultants make up 16 percent of the class, followed by former folks from finance, at 14 percent. That’s a notable drop from the 23 percent of the Class of 2018 who came from finance jobs. Tech comes in third, at 11 percent of the class, followed by government, manufacturing, and media, each at 10 percent. Not to be left out, consumer marketing, at 9 percent, and non-profits, at 8 percent, hold their own as the pie gets sliced.

As always, we offer the class profile stats as an introduction to our Real Humans feature, where actual students in the Goizueta MBA Class of 2019 bring to life some of those numbers in novel ways. In the profiles that follow, you’ll hear from a philosophy major who earned his stripes in international glass manufacturing, a McKinsey consultant and self-professed “stress baker” looking to pivot into tech, a music guy looking to shift into product or brand management, and more.

You’ll also hear about how Goizueta’s strength in getting its graduates into the jobs they want—the school has boasted a 100 percent internship placement rate for more than five years running, and 94 percent of the most recent graduating class had a job offer within three months of graduation.

Better than that, though, is what you’ll learn about the true nature of Goizueta—the intimacy of the small class size, the charm of—and abounding employment opportunities in—Atlanta, the infamous “core,” why Atlanta trumps Boston in weather hands-down, and much more. Read on!