Building a Business School from Scratch


It’s easy to forget how complicated a world-class business school really is. But if you want a good look at one’s inner workings, watch as Johns Hopkins gets the Carey School of Business off the ground. This Business Week article is a revealing look at what goes into a top MBA program.

Known primarily for its medical and public health schools, Johns Hopkins’ business offerings have traditionally been limited. But a $50 million gift from banker William Polk Carey has the university dreaming big. They aren’t simply going to start a business school; they aim to create one of the world’s best.

But the obstacles they must surmount first are considerable”and enlightening. First, the school needed a dean. They chose Yash Gupta, who brings more than a decade of experience and a proven knack for fundraising. Then Gupta began to gather building blocks: students, faculty, and funding. Students had reservations, but Johns Hopkins’ cache won over enough applicants. Gupta has wooed 31 faculty members to the school and hopes to triple that number in 5 years. And then there’s the issue of the curriculum. We’ve already written a bit about the program’s plans to integrate ethical education more thoroughly than other schools. A new program is an opportunity to do things differently”but the development process isn’t easy.

Finally, to meet their goal of recognition as a major, top-choice international business school, the Carey School of Business will have to clear one more difficult hurdle. The program needs accreditation from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. The Johns Hopkins brand weighs heavily in Carey’s favor, and by leveraging the university’s expertise in public health and medicine, they already occupy a valuable niche. But the school also needs to launch a major fundraising campaign, while boosting its alumni network and career services offerings.

It’s worth a look if you’re considering places to apply. Johns Hopkins’ efforts demonstrate all the moving parts in a business school”and all the important features you should take into account.

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  2. Maricela Dimeo April 19, 2012 at 12:03 pm

    Building a business school is not a joke. It takes effort, courage, and money, of course. So, for a business school to be built and have a reputable name is already a big achievement.

  3. Peter Murphy June 5, 2011 at 4:41 am

    With the current financial crisis and the questionable ethics of some bankers and large corporations, a sound education in business and ethics would hopefully produce a better calibre of graduates that is sorely required.


  4. Painting Contractors June 4, 2011 at 4:07 am

    kfaircloth in the post you wrote:

    “We’ve already written a bit about the program’s plans to integrate ethical education more thoroughly than other schools.”

    Its great to see a Business school focus on area not traditionally taught in other business courses and schools. ‘Ethics’ is something most people learn as they grow up but when money i.e. business is involved ‘ethics’ seems to fly out the window.

    Teaching students the value of good business ethics will go a long way to developing a global business society where value and making a difference will be more important that just profits.

    Hamilton – Ethical Business Owner

  5. Coat Rack May 3, 2011 at 9:17 am

    Adding a world-class MBA program to complement John Hopkins world renowned medical school will make them not only one of the premier schools in the US but around the world.

  6. Wanda Stanford April 22, 2011 at 11:26 pm

    “The program needs accreditation from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.”

    Any update on this? How long of a process is it to gain accreditation from AACSB?

    I expect it’s mostly a formality, with John Hopkins association and the $50 million to come up with a pretty good proposal…

  7. Peg Rack April 19, 2011 at 2:44 pm

    It looks like the big Ivy League business schools have some competition the Carey school of business at John Hopkins is up and running and holding classes, it will be interesting to keep an eye on this as it develops further

  8. Adrian April 16, 2011 at 11:55 pm

    It appears the Carey School of Business is up and running and who wants to bet against it reaching it’s goal of becoming a top business school destination given the backing of an institution such as Johns Hopkins with a reputation for excellence.

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