Live Updates: Coronavirus Impact On Business Schools

What is the impact of coronavirus on business schools? We bring you the latest updates including campus closures, changes to MBA admission requirements, and more


Latest features:

HEC Paris Launches COVID-19 Hackathon

April 6 Roundup

HEC Paris Launches COVID-19 Hackathon

HEC Paris alumni, Lucille Collet (Master’s in Management) and Camille Zivré (MBA), have organized a hackathon on April 10th-12th, in partnership with Sciences Po Paris and Ecole Polytechnique. 

The Hackathon will bring together the three schools’ stakeholders, engineers, entrepreneurs, researchers, experts, and available resources to find new solutions to fight the coronavirus pandemic and mitigate its short and long terms effects on society.

The online hackathon is open to all. Candidates can participate as hackers, or mentors.  

The project aims to find long term solutions to four pillars of the current coronavirus crisis: 

- Offering help to health professionals

- Helping governments handle the crisis efficiently

- Supporting businesses

- Helping local communities

Too much time on their hands? 

Students from the University of Pennsylvania have recreated their campus on Minecraft. If only we could all be so meticulous when working from home!

UBC Sauder’s Robert H. Lee Graduate School Adjusts Admissions Process

The coronavirus crisis has forced business schools to adjust their admissions process. Whether that’s extending MBA admission deadlines, waiving admissions test scores and giving students conditional offers, or shifting the whole process online. 

UBC Sauder’s Robert H. Lee Graduate School is one of many schools following the evolving global challenges posed by the COVID-19 outbreak as they continue to communicate, support, review, and make decisions towards students’ program applications.

Students can book an online virtual meet-up with one of the school’s admission managers, and the school have said they are prepared to review applications with unofficial transcripts, degrees, and certificates. At this time, they can do an initial review of your application without a GMAT/GRE or English Proficiency score—this is due to the impact coronavirus has had on admissions tests.

Document submission deadlines for official/final transcripts, test scores, and requirements have been extended to June 30th, 2020 for all programs.

ISB mark 'unofficial graduation day' from home

Students from Indian School of Business' (ISB) Hyderabad campus were supposed to graduate on April 3rd. With a little bit of online innovation the class celebrated 'unofficial graduation day' from home. 

HEC Paris Alumni Leading The Fight Against COVID-19

The HEC Alumni network in China and Europe has volunteered to coordinate the production and transportation of tens of millions of protective masks and medical equipment to cities where they are needed. The initiative is being led by the president of the HEC Alumni Chapter in Shenzhen, Thibaud Sarrazin (MBA class of 1997).

The initiative has led to a wider mobilization effort by the alumni association to call for donations to support the action of both Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) and Médecins du Mond. That is being led by Frederic Jousset, president of the HEC Paris Alumni network globally, in close partnership with the Sciences Po alumni association.

MBA Students Demand Refunds For Online Coronavirus Classes

April 7 Roundup

MBA students want ‘tuition relief’

 MBA students at top business schools like Wharton and Stanford have signed online petitions requesting that tuition fees are reduced as their learning experience and—they argue—the value of their MBA degree, has been impacted by coronavirus. In a letter to the school’s leadership, Wharton MBAs said:

We remain in prevalent agreement that virtual coursework, however well executed, does not provide the same educational value as the normal in-person classes that we expected when we enrolled. 

With that reality in mind, once this immediate health crisis has stabilized we would like to open a dialogue regarding conditions under which Wharton MBA students might receive an appropriate amount of relief of tuition payments or other forms of assistance to compensate for the period during which the school’s operations are affected. 

Read the full petition letter here

How do you choose the right business school during coronavirus?

Should coronavirus impact your choice of business school? We ask Joël McConnell, recruitment and admissions head at Imperial College Business School.

coronavirus choice of business school

Berkeley Haas tell you how to lead in a crisis

 Berkeley Executive Education has released a free weekly video series featuring top faculty offering insights on leading through crisis. The videos feature Berkeley Haas professors offering their expertise across a wide range of fields—from psychology, sociology, and organizational behavior to economics and neuroscience.

Watch Jenny Chatman shares her tips on how leaders can help their employees stay focused during this time of uncertainty: 

Register for weekly updates!

 If you haven’t already, make sure you register to BusinessBecause and check ‘yes’ to receiving our newsletter to get weekly updates on the coronavirus pandemic and other business school news. Registering also gets you exclusive access to locked-down content which will help you when applying for business school.


Coronavirus Disrupts Business School Admissions

April 8 Roundup 

6 Ways Coronavirus Could Impact Your Business School Application

Coronavirus (COVID-19) has hit business schools and MBAs hard. Disruptions to GMAT and GRE test centers, travel restrictions, and the closing of schools worldwide in light of the pandemic have left business school applicants adrift.

Fortunately, both the GMAT and the GRE have been reworked as online tests. The online GMAT test will be available by mid-April, with the online GRE available now.

Some schools, like Harvard, Kellogg, and Rotterdam School of Management, are also adjusting their application deadlines, and waiving test results or giving students conditional offers—many interviews are being conducted online too.

These are just some of the ways coronavirus could impact your business school application. 

Read the full article here.

Harvard Turns Itself Into A Case

Just how do you move 1,800 MBA students and 200 faculty online in under two weeks? Harvard has the answer. Birthplace of the case study method, HBS has turned itself into a case study.

UNC Kenan-Flagler Delays Start Of Full-Time MBA

UNC Kenan-Flagler has delayed the official start of its Full-Time MBA program to August 31st. The school has also extended the round four application deadline for the full-time MBA to July 13th. In a statement the school said that applications will continue to be reviewed and admissions decisions released on a rolling basis. 

Test scores are also being waived for new applicants. Applicants can submit other standardized test scores (for example, SAT, ACT, LSAT, or MCAT), and for those receiving waivers, formal offers of admission may be based on successful completion of the school’s Analytical Skills Workshop, before the start of the program. 

USF Aids The COVID-19 Healthcare Effort In The US

A team of University of San Francisco (USF) science instructors and staff have donated $5,000 worth of masks and other PPE from the university’s labs, to the University of California, San Francisco Medical Center to aid health workers caring for COVID-19 patients. 

USF’s Department of Public Safety also donated 1,000 surgical masks to local Kaiser hospitals from the university’s stock for the Northern California fires. The School of Nursing and Health Professions is also donating PPE supplies to St. Mary’s Medical Center. The team is also planning to donate hand sanitizer to local Kaiser hospitals.

Coronavirus: One In Three Business School Candidates Consider Delaying Degree

April 9 Roundup

One-Third Of Business School Candidates Consider Delaying Degrees

Nearly one-third of candidates are considering delaying their pursuit of an MBA or business master’s degree because of coronavirus. That’s according to data from the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC). Data was collated between March 4th and 31st. 

Of the 482 individuals who responded to the survey questions related to COVID-19 and its impact on their pursuit of graduate business education, 29% said they are considering delaying their plans.

35% plan to delay by six months or less, and 30% said they were planning to delay by seven-and-12 months. Only 14% are thinking of delaying by more than a year.

Elsewhere in the survey, in the second half of March, 35% of respondents said they were very or extremely concerned about their future pursuit of graduate business school. That’s compared with just 13% in the first half of the month. 

However, very few candidates are considering abandoning their pursuit of a graduate business degree altogether.

How about a digital detox?

We’re all at home 24/7, and have become more dependent as ever on digital connectivity. But how about the occasional digital detox?

Professor Sandra Sieber of IESE Business School shares her tips on how to switch off.

ESSEC Dean speaks out again

MBA Alum Leads Henry Ford Health System’s COVID-19 Response

Betty Chu, a 2013 MBA graduate from the Michigan Ross School of Business, is leading the Henry Ford Health System’s (HFHS) fight against COVID-19.

She says she starts her day as the incident commander for HFSF at 5am. COVID-19 is on her mind all day. It’s a far cry from her usual day to day, as the organization’s senior vice president, associate chief clinical officer, and chief quality officer.

The leadership skills she developed on the MBA have really been put to the test. When coronavirus cases first began appearing in China, Betty and her team began planning and holding daily huddles with specialists to discuss how they would fight an outbreak in the US.

When that day came, Betty was put at the center of the incident command structure developed for the health system, and she led her team in putting together the emergency response plan.

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