While the University of St. Thomas College of Business in Minneapolis is better known for its part-time MBA program founded in 1974, the newer, full-time program has the makings of success. Newly appointed Dean Christopher Puto formerly helmed Georgetown University McDonough School of Business. In addition, the school recently received a $50 million donation from Best Buy (BBY) founder Dick Schulze.
Teresa Rothausen-Vange has been director of the St. Thomas full-time MBA program since its inception in 2003. She is also an associate professor of management at the university. Before joining UST, Rothausen-Vange was an associate professor at Texas A&M University for four years. Earlier in her career, she spent three years working for Arthur Anderson & Co. Rothausen-Vange recently spoke with BusinessWeek Online intern Taylor Kopelan. Here are edited excerpts of the conversation:
Q: Have applications been up or down over the last few years?
A: They have been steady the last couple of years. We launched a brand new full-time program, so applications rose between the first and second year and have since leveled off.
Q: What is your average GMAT score? And how do you weigh the score for applicants?
A: It's about 570. We don't have a cutoff because we look at the entire package of materials and then make our decision based on everything.
Q: What advice would you give to those with a lower score?
A: I would tell them to look at the rest of their package and consider the other assets that they're bringing to the school. They should make sure they bring those things out in their application, whether it's in the essay or by carefully choosing those who write letters of recommendation for them.
We're looking for both demonstrated and potential leadership. We're interested in students who fit with our program in terms of ethics and values, are motivated by our personal and small environment, and want to get out there in business and do actual projects rather than just sit in the classroom. If they don't have those compensating factors, then they probably need to retake the GMAT.
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