Our latest edition of the “School Information” series is an interview with Stephen Sweeney, Director of Full-Time MBA Recruiting and Admissions at The University of Texas at Austin, McCombs School of Business.

What is special about your MBA program? In addition to its’ excellent reputation, what differentiates it from other Top MBA programs?

The Texas McCombs MBA is located Austin, Texas, one of the fastest growing cities in the USA. Students can take advantage of all of the large companies and smaller, start-up companies located in our city because our campus is located downtown, in the business district.  Our program has about 265 students in each year of the program, so a total of about 530 students in the full-time MBA program. We find our size to be a competitive advantage because our students make life-long bonds with each other. Our students can also take advantage of all of the resources at the University of Texas at Austin, which has over 50,000 students, so our students have the best of both worlds – an intimate program, and a large university. Technology continues to be a major focus of the business school and our experiential learning opportunities allow our students to work for companies while in school.

Are there any recent changes in the programs or in the admission process?

Our program continues to have a strong focus on emerging technologies like block chain, AI, machine learning, and data analytics. We also continue to focus on consulting and clean technology. Many of our departments are ranked in the top 10 in the US, so students will get an extremely strong general management background.

For the class of 2021, we are introducing an evolution of our core curriculum with more focus on a customized leadership development plan that spans the two years a student is in the program.

Our Career Services team continue to be a major asset of the program and adapt their curriculum based on student interest.

Can you share some details about the atmosphere in the school? Between students, between students and faculty? How do students spend their free time?

We have a very student-driven culture, meaning our students drive our program forward. Our faculty are very accessible and are consistently ranked in the top 5 of Princeton Review for their accessibility and their research.  Austin is a pretty laid-back city, so some of this bleeds into the business school as well. Our students like each other, so they also hang out outside of school. There are many social activities that occur during the week and being in Texas, football can be a big part of the fall’s social activities.

Can you share some details regarding job opportunities and summer internships for students in your school?

All of our students complete a summer internship. We have a lot of data about placement rates, industry placements, etc. on our website here: https://www.mccombs.utexas.edu/MBA/Full-Time/Career-Advancement. The majority of our international students choose to work in the US after they graduate and we have one of the highest placement rates out of the top 20 MBA programs in the US.

What kind of candidates is the school looking for? Who will especially enjoy this school? who will be a good fit to the school?

We are looking for students who not only know what they want to get out of the program, but also know what they are going to contribute. As I mentioned, we are a very student driven program, so we want students who will take on leadership roles and start new initiatives. Students who have a balance of competitiveness and collaboration skills will excel in our program.

Is there anything you’d like our candidates to know regarding the admissions process?

Reach out to our students and alumni to learn more about our program! They love to speak with applicants. We have directories on our website. We also have a very informative blog that I encourage all applicants to review here: http://blogs.mccombs.utexas.edu/mba-insider/