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Top College Business Schools

Business remains a highly sought-after undergraduate program, as it is one of the most logical and lucrative areas of study. Pursuing a business-focused undergraduate degree is a strategic investment in one’s career, opening doors to competitive opportunities in finance, accounting, management, marketing, and various other fields. As the demand for specialized expertise grows, undergraduate business programs have become increasingly competitive, attracting ambitious applicants eager to succeed.

The advantages of enrolling in a business undergraduate program are numerous and impactful. These include access to top-notch resources and opportunities, a tailored academic curriculum that bolsters your professional appeal, and invaluable connections with world-renowned professors who are pioneers in the field, just to name a few. Below, we’ve assembled the top ten current standings of business undergraduate programs.

Top Ten Colleges for Business
1 University of Pennsylvania
3 University of California- Berkeley
4 University of Michigan- Ann Arbor
5 Carnegie Mellon University
6 New York University
7 University of Texas at Austin
8 Cornell University
9 Indiana University- Bloomington
10 University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

*This data has been populated based on the most current reporting from U.S . News & World Report

1. University of Pennsylvania

University of Pennsylvania is the number one university offering undergraduate business programming. The Wharton School has 2,500 undergraduate students pursuing the business concentration across all four classes of students. For reference, Penn’s incoming class of 2027 was made up of 2,420 students which means that the total number of undergraduates at Wharton is comparable in size to a single undergraduate class at UPenn. Wharton’s framework provides students with the opportunity to select a specialized field of emphasis known as a concentration. With more than 18 concentrations, Wharton students are able choose the best-fit courses for their own interests and career aspirations.

Wharton also allows students the flexibility to collaborate with a professor to craft a distinctive and personalized concentration. Some of the existing concentrations include Accounting, Behavioral Economics, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Entrepreneurship & Innovation, Marketing, Environmental, Social and Governance Factors for Business, and more. Students can apply to Wharton by utilizing Penn’s general application process and will be prompted to indicate their focused academic area of interest as well as tackle supplemental essay options specific to Wharton admissions.

2. MIT

The MIT Sloan undergraduate program ranks number two in the country for business majors in college. It is a 100-year-old program that equips students with the skills to infuse their technical proficiencies with their business insights. Sloan’s focus is on providing students with a management education that is rooted in the scientific method. The major and paths available for undergraduates to pursue through the Sloan program include Management, Business Analytics, and Finance. There are also plenty of double major pathways in which students can integrate their business major with Mechanical Engineering, Artificial Intelligence & Decision Making, Biological Engineering, Computation & Cognition, and countless more interdisciplinary fields of study. In its hefty collaboration with graduate students and its professionally-inspired class discussions, Sloan aims to provide undergraduates with a curriculum and an academic learning environment that best reflects the real-world application of business studies. Graduates from the MIT Sloan program have gone on to join the ranks of hires at Google, Merrill Lynch, Goldman Sachs, J.P. Morgan, and more.

3. University of California—Berkeley

The Haas undergraduate program at University of California—Berkeley ranks as the number three business program in the country. It is a prestigious business program that is deeply inspired by innovation. This program is also committed to providing students with research-based teaching that will set up students to succeed in their future endeavors. The B.S. Business Administration degree from Haas encompasses Accounting, Finance, Marketing, Business Communication, Organization Management, and more. There are also three additional pathways that students can apply to in their pursuit of a business focus of study at Haas.

  1. The first option is the Management Entrepreneurship & Technology Program which is available for application by freshman students who are looking to study both engineering and business.
  2. The second option for students to become involved with is the Global Management Program. This incredible program examines and integrates the studies of business with a greater global perspective and provides students with project-based travel opportunities, making it an extremely relevant and valuable area of focus.
  3. Lastly, students can also apply to the dual-degree program known as the Robinson Life Sciences, Business, and Entrepreneurship Program. This degree program is for students looking to combine their studies of biology and business.

Berkeley’s diverse array of unique business pathways makes it a highly competitive school amongst those hopeful undergraduates vying for the best academic business experience.

4. University of Michigan—Ann Arbor

The Michigan Ross School of Business at University of Michigan—Ann Arbor ranks as the number four undergraduate business program in the country. It is incredibly well-esteemed for those looking to obtain a competitive Bachelor of Business Administration degree. Michigan Ross places a major emphasis on real-world application and experience which is well represented by their “REAL” (Ross Experiences in Action-Based Learning) opportunities. These opportunities can involve the full-cycle development and launch of your own business idea, consulting with actual businesses on strategic planning, assisting with the management of a fully student-led investment fund, and more.

Michigan Ross students graduate well-equipped and skilled to succeed in various fields of business including, but not limited to, Accounting, Consulting, Entrepreneurship, Finance, Human Capital, Marketing and Sales, Operations, Real Estate, Social Impact & Sustainability, Technology, and more. Please note that Ross’ undergraduate admission rate is much lower than the admission rate of the university as a whole given its prominence and popularity.

5. Carnegie Mellon University

The Tepper Undergraduate Business Program at Carnegie Mellon ranks as the number five undergraduate business program in the US. It is renowned for its remarkable academic approach to the study of business and its real-world applications. Undergraduate students at Tepper can choose to pursue a path specific to business or economics. In an effort to best prepare students for the honed expertise required for their career endeavors, the business pathway has eight concentrations to choose from: Accounting, Business Analytics and Technology, Entrepreneurship, Finance, Global Economics and Business, Marketing Management, Operations Management, and Strategic Management.

Tepper’s economics pathway is intended for students seeking a thorough, data-driven learning approach to the multi-faceted world of economics. It is notable that, in 2019, Tepper received a coveted STEM certification for its undergraduate economic programming. This designation is especially relevant for international students since it extends the duration of a student’s visa post-graduation. This certification also permits students in the economic programs at Carnegie Mellon to “apply for publicly and privately funded fellowships, scholarships, and grants that are only open to students studying or who have studied in STEM fields.” The specific majors within economics that are available to undergraduates include a Bachelor of Arts in Economics, Bachelor of Science in Economics, Bachelor of Science in Economics and Mathematical Sciences, Bachelor of Science in Economics and Politics, and a Bachelor of Science in Economics and Statistics.

6. New York University

NYU’ Stern School of Business ranks as the sixth most competitive undergraduate business program in the country. Prospective high school students can apply directly to one of the three distinctive business programs offered to undergraduates through the reputable NYU Stern Undergraduate College: BS in Business, BS in Business and Political Economy, or the BS in Business, Technology and Entrepreneurship. The BS in Business program consists of 12 concentrations which include Accounting, Business Economics, Computing & Data Science, Finance, Marketing, Operations, Sustainable Business, and more.

Aside from these specified concentrations, students also have plenty of interdisciplinary learning opportunities from curricular tracks including Asset Pricing, Business Analytics, Corporate Finance, Digital Marketing, Luxury Marketing, Real Estate, and more. There are also two additional, unique dual-degree options within the BS in Business program: BS in Business/MS in Accounting and BS in Business/BFA in Film and Television. In summary, students have plenty of autonomy and options in selecting a path that is most aligned with their own interests and career passions.

7. University of Texas at Austin

The McCombs School of Business Undergraduate program ranks number seven in undergraduate business programs. It is one of the most competitive in the country and is known for its award-winning faculty, prized networking opportunities and its Canfield Business Honors Program . The CBHP is a subsect of the McCombs School and provides a more intensive, rigorous curriculum which is accompanied by smaller classes and a tight community-feel. The McCombs School itself offers ten majors so that you can specialize and hone your expertise based on your own intrinsic interests. These majors include Accounting, Finance, Integrated MPA, International Business, Management, Marketing, Management Information Systems, Business Analytics, Supply Chain Management, and more.

Situated in Texas, one of the most highly ranked states in the country for business, the McCombs School of Business program remains highly-regarded and a competitive campus to obtain admission to with an acceptance rate of nearly 19%. Alongside the impressive networking opportunities and distinguished faculty leadership, McCombs is an excellent choice for those seeking an undergraduate focus in business. Though because University of Texas at Austin is a state school, it will give preference to students who reside in Texas.

8. Cornell University

Cornell University ranks as the eight best undergraduate business program in the United States. As part of the Cornell SC Johnson College of Business, Cornell has two distinguished business programs available to undergraduates. Currently there are close to 1,500 undergraduates enrolled across both programs. The first pathway for students is a BS in Applied Economics & Management which is offered through the Charles H. Dyson School of Applied Economics and Management. With more than 11 concentrations, students have a diverse selection of options. These concentrations include Accounting, Agribusiness Management, Applied Economics & Management, Business Analytics, Entrepreneurship, Environmental, Energy and Resource Economics, Finance, Food Industry Management, International Trade and Development, Marketing, and Strategy.

The second pathway for undergraduate students looking to pursue business at Cornell is in obtaining a BS in Hotel Administration through the Nolan School. Hotel Administration majors have 16 specializations to select from with the areas of focus being Corporate Finance, Hospitality Controllership, Securities Analysis/Investment Banking, Hotel/Restaurant Development, Human Resources, Law, Revenue Management, Services Marketing Management, and more. In summary, both business programs are highly curated and specialized and grant students the highest-level of expertise in the field of their chosen pursuit. Not to mention, undergraduate students benefit from the robust resources and opportunities that accompany the global prestige of a university like Cornell. This rigorous programming alongside a rich arsenal of resources sets up students for success in their future careers.

9. Indiana University—Bloomington

The Kelley School of Business at Indiana University—Bloomington ranks as the ninth best undergraduate business program in the US. It provides undergraduate students with the fundamental and specialized knowledge to conduct business at a global level. With a diverse array of 20 majors, students can hone in on what interests them most within the broader field of business. The Business majors and co-majors offered include Accounting, Business Analytics, Digital and Social Media Business Applications, Economic Consulting, Finance, Information Systems, International Business, Marketing, Operations Management, Public Policy Analysis, Real Estate, Sustainable Business, and more.

The Kelley School recognizes the importance of preparing students for post-graduate professional success by offering personal academic and career advisors for each student. This personalized guidance along with an immensely dedicated and renowned faculty makes Kelley distinctly ranked as one of the top business schools in the country.

10. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

The Kenan-Flagler Business School at UNC ranks as the tenth best undergraduate business program in the US. It provides undergraduates with a multi-faceted, individualized student experience. A global perspective, a commitment to action-based learning, real-world application and networking opportunities, and a distinct down-to-earth culture are just a few of the valuable components of the rigorous undergraduate business program offered at UNC at Chapel Hill. Students are not just guided to become the experts in their field but are also developed to be professionals with the integrity and authentic personality that will make them the most desirable job candidate post-graduation. This holistic, individual development approach fosters a collaborative community that celebrates the unique strengths and skills of every student. Kenan-Flagler offers nine distinct Areas of Emphasis that students can choose from. These Areas include Consulting, Entrepreneurship, Investment Banking, Investment Management, Marketing Management & Sales, Multinational Finance, Operations Management, and Real Estate.

How to Get into Competitive College or Undergraduate Business Programs

When applying to top-ranked college business programs, it is crucial to understand how competitive they are. These schools are going to want to see much more than just high grades and tests scores. They will also want to see leadership, commitment to the community, and an impressive resume. To make your child a more competitive business applicant, a college admissions consultant can provide invaluable guidance. A proficient college counselor will provide a clear path towards achieving your college goals. In today’s competitive college admissions landscape, we are here to streamline the application process, tailoring it to your unique requirements, and empowering you to succeed as an applicant to undergraduate business programs. If you are interested in exploring specialized academic programs or learning about the specifics of the Spark Advantage, don’t hesitate to reach out to one of our expert college admissions consultants. We are committed to supporting and assisting you every step of the way. Feel free to contact us; we’re here to help!

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