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MBA Concentration

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.

Entrepreneurial Management
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 Management.

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 Management.

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).

Multinational 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.

Real Estate
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' managerial abilities.

Strategic Management
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.

Individualized Major
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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