Nearly Two-Thirds of U.S. MBA Programs Report Declines in Applications

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New data indicates that MBA programs in the U.S. saw their fourth year in a row of declining applicants. The numbers from the Graduate Management Admission Council, which administers the GMAT entry exam, suggest that more than 60 percent of U.S. programs experienced a drop.

The Financial Times reports that the U.S. numbers are in sharp contrast to Asia, where 80 percent of schools said they had increases in applicants. Globally, 43 percent of full-time, two-year MBA programs saw increases in applications this year—up 15 percentage points.

Columbia Business School said that applications had declined 19 percent for its two-year MBA program.
The Wall Street Journal also reported that, in contrast, other schools saw major increases, including the University of California, Los Angeles, which used more aggressive marketing efforts last year to lure students.

The findings also showed that women applicants to MBA programs are becoming more common. Nearly half of the MBA degrees in the U.S. saw more applications from women this year.