NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

Business Schools Are Focusing On Ethics

September 17, 2002

Applicants for M.B.A. programs must add a sense of integrity to their other qualifications or they may not get into the school of their choice. That's the picture that's emerging as the nation's leading business schools adopt some new procedures in response to the corporate scandals of recent months.

  • In June, the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania hired a firm to screen applications for exaggerations or lies about work accomplishments.
  • The Amos Tuck School of Business Administration at Dartmouth has begun acknowledging receipt of letters of recommendation -- hoping to catch applicants who wrote glowing fakes.
  • The University of Chicago's Graduate School of Business and the Columbia Business School are doing more to verify employment histories, salaries, job titles and responsibilities.
  • Admissions officers at Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management are asking authors of recommendation letters to elaborate on the character and integrity of candidates.

Even Business Week magazine is considering giving ethics instruction a more prominent weighting in its annual ranking of business schools.

Source: Lynnley Browning, "M.B.A. Programs Now Screen for Integrity, Too," New York Times, September 15, 2002.


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