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Saturday, October 14, 2006

PR: Many schools showing increasing women enrollment

The following is a PR release by Forte. It's a good idea to stay skeptical of how much the Forte Foundation would like to take complete credit for the increase in women enrollments. I say this because there is no mention of cumulative factors that caused the increasing numbers which I believe to be the real cause. There is no mention of factors such as economic progress where more women are working more than ever; the amount of work each individual school is doing to recruit women;the growing influence of internet forums such as the Wharton, Yale, Chicago,,,, Businessesk forums; and there is no mention of the growth of Blogs/Internet sites such as this one that make the application progress more accessible where growth has been from 30 to over 500 in the last 3 years.

Having expressed my complaint of the manipulative and egotistical way in which the Forte Foundation desires everyone to recognize the rise in women at all Business Schools to be their doing, this article is still worth reviewing to assess changes in women numbers in many B-School's.

By the way, I applaude the work that the Forte Foundation does for women. I just don't like the ego and the need to justify their existence in the way this PR release did.

Forte Foundation Member Schools
Showing Significant Gains in Women MBA Enrollment
NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Analysis of some of the most prestigious MBA programs in the U.S. and Europe shows significant gains in the number of women entering business school, according to the Forte Foundation (, a nonprofit organization dedicated to encouraging women to pursue leadership roles in business.

A census of Forte's 27 business school members indicates an overall pattern of increased enrollment among female students, with nearly two thirds of members reporting gains over last year and some programs realizing increases as high as 13 percent. In total, more than half of Forte member schools have broken the 'glass ceiling' of female MBA enrollment, reckoned at 30 percent.

"What's significant is the size of the overall gain nearly two percentage points higher than any ever reported and statistically a huge leap over the half or quarter point gains of previous years," noted Elissa Ellis, Executive Director, Forte Foundation. "And this trend seems poised to continue."

The Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC) recently released figures showing a 64 percent increase in the number female full-time MBA applicants. In addition, the Forte Foundation is experiencing record breaking attendance at its educational and networking events.

"Considering the amount of lag time between contemplating an MBA, deciding to apply, and actually entering a program, we believe that the business school arena is beginning to reap the benefits of the networking and educational forums started by the Forte Foundation in 2002," added Ellis.

The Yale School of Management reported the highest percentage of female MBA student enrollment with 38 percent for 2006, followed by the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania with 36 percent.

Regional Summary:

Overall, programs in the Mid Atlantic region showed the largest gains, with a 17 percent total increase in female enrollment in MBA programs (Carlson School of Management at Minnesota, the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, Tepper School of Business at Carnegie Mellon, and McDonough School of Business at Georgetown).
The Midwest gained 9 points in female enrollment (University of Chicago Graduate School of Business, The Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern, Washington University in St. Louis, Ross School of Business at Michigan and the Kelley School of Business at Indiana).
"Fort" Forums are really gathering momentum, said Rose Martinelli, Associate Dean, Student Recruitment and Admissions, Chicago GSB. "They offer a safe place where women just now thinking of graduate school can ask questions and find role models. We 'B-schools' are 'just in time recruiters', speaking with women who already know they want an MBA, but Forte is filling the essential role of feeding the pipeline."

The West showed gains of six points with female enrollment reaching 35 percent (The Marshall School of Business at USC).
The Southeast reported an advance of five points, with Wake Forest reporting the largest single year gain (13%) with female enrollment increasing from 21 to 34 percent (Darden Graduate School of Business Administration at Virginia, Goizueta Business School at Emory, the UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School, Wake Forest (Babcock), and The Fuqua School of Business at Duke).
The Southwest had a four point uptick, rising from 25 percent to 29 percent female enrollment (The McCombs School of Business at Texas).
Collectively the Northeast programs remained on track with last year (Babson Graduate School of Business, Columbia Business School, Harvard Business School, MIT Sloan School of Management, Stern School of Business at NYU, Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth, Yale School of Management and the Johnson School of Management at Cornell).
Fort's three international member schools have yet to break the "glass ceiling" of 30 percent but reported a net gain of 7 points (Paris, INSEAD and HEC, and the London Business School).

About the Forte Foundation

The Forte Foundation is a consortium of 25 leading multinational corporations, 27 top business schools in the U.S. and abroad, and the Graduate Management Admissions Council (GMAC). In just five years, the Organization has become a powerful change agent directing women towards leadership roles in business and enabling corporations to more effectively reach and retain top female talent. It is the only organization that provides a national infrastructure for women at all stages of the career continuum to access the information, scholarship support and networking connections they need to succeed in business careers. For more information visit the Forte Foundation website at


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