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The following is a list of majors, accompanied by a brief description of
the types of careers candidates in those majors may consider -- many other
career options are always available to graduates. A student's experience
prior to coming into the MBA Program, his or her personal interests, and
career goals all influence the choice of a major.
The Accounting major is good preparation for those considering careers in
corporate finance, treasury, investment banking, or private equity.
Accounting may also be useful for those interested in careers in investment
management, hedge funds, trading, consumer finance, and the government and
military sectors. The major also fulfills the requirements for the CPA
(Certified Public Accountant) or CMA (Certified Management Accountant). Many
accounting students pursue a double major in finance.
Business and Public Policy
Government influence on the conduct of business is pervasive; and
understanding government regulation, especially in rapidly evolving areas
such as intellectual property rights, is critical. The Business and Public
Policy major is a good choice for those considering a career in
international development or working with traditional consulting firms with
international development practices. Recent growth in micro-finance has
opened up more career opportunities, especially for students who combine
this major with finance. The major is also appropriate for those interested
in careers in the nonprofit sector, social impact management and corporate
governance in the for-profit and public sectors.
The Entrepreneurial Management major allows students to either make a career
change directly into entrepreneurial ventures or to return to the field with
the necessary frameworks and skills. The major is also an appropriate choice
for those considering private equity or management consulting or those
entering smaller companies with a strong growth curve. Entrepreneurial
Management is commonly coupled with Finance, Marketing, or Strategic
Environmental and Risk Management
This major makes sense for students interested in pursuing careers that
focus on sustainable business initiatives. It focuses on the confluence
between environmental management and "triple bottom-line" reporting, which
has become so important in balanced scorecard approaches to accounting and
investor relations. The electives are popular as a complement for those
pursuing other majors but are nevertheless interested in understanding the
sustainability debate, international environmental issues related to trade
and emerging economies, and the intersecting issues of business ethics,
social responsibility, and managerial decision making.
Wharton's most popular major, Finance is also a common choice for a double
major. It clearly appeals to those interested in the finance sector,
including investment banking, investment management, hedge funds, and
private equity. The major is likewise a good choice for those considering
careers in corporate treasury, retail banking, and consumer finance
positions. Finance majors also often fill management consulting jobs as well
as corporate finance positions, for example in mergers and acquisitions in
the energy sector. The Finance major combines particularly well with
Strategic Management, Marketing, and Operations and Information Management.
Health Care Management
The health care industry is the U.S.'s second largest employer. Health Care
Management is the most popular major with an industry focus. It appeals to
those interested in the pharmaceuticals sector, the emerging biotech area,
health services, government agencies, insurance organizations, and health
maintenance organizations (HMOs). There are also consulting companies that
specialize in the health care sector. Health Care Management differs from
any other major at Wharton as it blends specific coursework and professional
development opportunities; candidates are required to select the major at
the time of application.
Human Resource and Organizational Management
The Human Resource and Organizational Management major prepares students for
senior leadership roles in the field or for those interested in working for
consultants specializing in human resources. The major is also applicable
for students interested in organizational change issues (change management)
and those entering Wharton with a very technical skill set, who want to
broaden their skills and gain a better understanding of the behavioral side
of an organization.
Information: Strategy, Systems, and Economics
This major emphasizes the use of information for strategic advantage. Its
interdisciplinary approach speaks to the manner in which information is now
valued and used in the marketplace. It is an appropriate choice for those
interested in management consulting or business intelligence.
Insurance and Risk Management
The Insurance and Risk Management major is designed for those who want
careers in the insurance industry, whether on the underwriting or agent
side. It is applicable for those in other industries who deal with risk and
hedging issues. And it is relevant for personal financial planning, risk
management, and employee benefits management. Electives in this field are a
popular complement to other majors, particularly Finance, which may lead to
positions in insurance company investment and/or pension fund management.
Management consulting firms look for candidates with insurance expertise for
positions involving insurance industry analysis, including insurance company
formations and acquisition.
Managing Electronic Commerce
The Managing Electronic Commerce major offers a foundation in the design and
implementation of business strategies for the Internet (e.g., electronic
retailing, packaging information, etc.). The major prepares students for
positions in consulting and in traditional product/service firms that wish
to define the appropriate role for electronic commerce.
The Marketing major investigates the fundamental approaches to understanding
markets, competitors, and portfolios of product offerings. It is an
excellent choice for those pursuing general management careers because it
examines the fundamental approaches to understanding markets, competitors,
and portfolios of product offerings. It is popular for those interested in
the media and entertainment field, as well as in management consulting.
Marketing's flexibility makes it a good choice for a double major with
Finance, Strategic Management, Entrepreneurial Management, or Operations
Marketing and Operations Management (joint major)
Comprising seven courses, Marketing and Operations Management is the only
official "joint major" at Wharton -- although many students pursue double,
and sometimes triple, majors. This area is attractive to those interested in
marketing in the manufacturing and service sectors (business-to-business
marketing in general) (e.g. supply chain management and new product
development, and general product and brand management).
Commonly coupled with the Finance or Marketing major, the Multinational
Management major prepares candidates interested in consulting or corporate
work for global organizations or government agencies.
Operations and Information Management
The Operations and Information Management major is relevant for those
involved in the "supply chain" of a business, whether it be with a physical
supply chain or an information-based system within the retail or
manufacturing end. The automotive and transportation industries are good
examples of increasingly complex business areas that clearly benefit from
the skills developed in this major. Individuals studying Operations and
Information Management will also find attractive opportunities in management
consulting and private equity firms.
The School's second most popular industry-focused major, it may be applied
to areas as diverse as corporate finance and project management, as well as
to investment banking positions that focus on real estate. Real Estate and
Finance work together well as a double major. The combination of the Real
Estate major and Business and Public Policy is appropriate for those
interested in urban planning and development.
The Statistics major allows students to develop a systematic approach to
answering questions from the vast amounts of data available to an
organization. It has a wide application across industries because its
quantitative approach offers important insights for decision making in
general. The courses provide useful skills that complement students'
The Strategic Management major is relevant for those pursuing a management
consulting career. It is also a popular choice for those going into general
management or internal consulting. Strategic Management also combines well
with the Marketing major for those interested in product and brand
management or the Finance major for those going into management consulting.
Wharton allows students with specific needs that are not met by the
traditional majors to pursue an individualized major. Recent examples
include the Private Equity major (popular with the evolving private equity
industry), Turnaround Management (relevant for opportunities working with
distressed businesses and leveraged buyouts), and Corporate Development
(relevant for mergers and acquisitions).
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