Both classes include students with a wide range of backgrounds and interests. Yale called its latest cohort a “diverse and global group” while Ross described its Class of 2018 as “the most diverse class of MBA students Michigan Ross has ever seen.”
No points for guessing that both classes are academically strong. According to Yale’s data, their Class of 2018 had a 730 average GMAT and 3.65 average undergrad GPA.
Meanwhile, Ross described their latest class as the strongest yet, with historical highs in both average GPA and average GMAT (708).
Michigan pointed out that their Class of 2018 is record-breaking in another way, too: it features the highest portion of women of any Ross class yet, at 40 percent. Twenty-four percent are minorities.
Still, Yale barely edged out Ross in its percentage of both women and minorities. Forty-three percent of Yale’s class are women. Twenty-eight percent are minorities, including thirteen percent who are underrepresented minorities.
The classes are also remarkably similar in how they break down by undergraduate major. Thirty-nine percent of Yale’s students did majors in business or economics compared with 38 percent of Ross’s.
For STEM subjects and humanities/social sciences, those numbers are 28 percent and 33 percent respectively for Yale versus 32 percent and 30 percent for Ross.
While Yale didn’t release information on their MBA students’ industry backgrounds, Ross revealed that 20 percent of its Class of 2018 is coming from financial services and 14 from consulting. The remaining 76 percent are divided between ten other industries.
Both Yale and Ross showed their international cred with their latest class profiles. Yale described forty-six percent of its students as international passport holders while Ross welcomes 31 percent international students this year.
Clearly, Yale and Ross boast classes that are relatively diverse and are becoming more so every year. But the two schools were quick to highlight another kind of diversity they value: diversity in terms of their students’ interests and skills.
Yale emphasized that students in this year’s cohort engaged in pastimes ranging from olive farming to watercolor painting. Not to be outdone, Ross pointed out that its newest MBA students included everyone from chocolatiers to professional beatboxers.
Members of Ross’s Class of 2018 have worked everywhere from the Turkish Treasury to the first TV network targeted at dogs. They’ve even started their own wine distribution company.
And Yale’s new students can hold their own in terms of diverse work backgrounds too. They’ve worked for the Israeli Ministry of Finance, been a command liaison for the U.S. Navy, and run marketing for the New York Shakespeare Festival.
There are two takeaways here. One is that top B-schools are interested in students with experience in all sorts of industries. The other is that between the olive farmers, the chocolatiers and the wine distributors, these MBA students could probably get together and throw a really good dinner party.