INSEAD San Francisco: New Campus In The US

INSEAD Business School, one of the world’s premier business schools, just established its first presence in North America – INSEAD San Francisco. While this is exciting news for U.S.-based students and executives, the announcement is unclear about whether INSEAD’s vaunted global MBA is bringing its curriculum stateside.

Nicknamed “The Hub”, INSEAD is launching the campus with an eye on first offering short-term executive education. As a world class graduate business school, INSEAD will serve as a bridge for executives in North America looking for new and innovative training to stay competitive in an increasingly global market. While this training will be a sampling of INSEAD’s 50 global programs, The Hub is starting out by only offering executive education programming.

Why is this a bummer? If you’re specifically looking to break into consulting, the INSEAD MBA is a fantastic option. It places more MBAs into consulting than any other program on the planet. If and when INSEAD brings its MBA offering in the States, students would have the option to leverage an INSEAD MBA to land a U.S. offer.

If you’re not familiar with INSEAD, here’s a little primer. INSEAD was founded in 1957. It offered its first MBA classes in 1960. It has since grown to offer over 50 programs across campuses in Europe, Asia, Middle East and now, the United States.

Introducing INSEAD San Francisco

INSEAD San Francisco offers a tailored selection of programs that are, for now, focused on executive development. It’s a smart play to begin to introduce the brand to a U.S. audience that doesn’t follow MBA rankings as closely as we do, and to tap into the Silicon Valley and venture finance talent base.

Specifically, some of the first programs coming to INSEAD San Francisco cover topics related to managing digital transformation, leading across borders and cultures, integrating performance and societal progress and implementing Blue Ocean Strategy (a strategic framework created by INSEAD professors W. Chan Kim and Renée Mauborgne).

INSEAD San Francisco, insead business school, INSEAD, INSEAD MBA

Why you should get an INSEAD MBA if you want to go into consulting

The heralded INSEAD MBA isn’t currently offering classes in San Francisco. Yet, we would be remiss if we didn’t talk about INSEAD’s flagship program – the 1-year MBA. It should be on the short list for anyone wanting to break into consulting.

More MBAs go into consulting from INSEAD than from any other business school. Astonishingly, a full 36% of new hires from the 2019 class landed management consulting offers, with McKinsey, Bain, and BCG the biggest class recruiters.

Another benefit of an INSEAD MBA? It truly is a global program. INSEAD has campuses in Fontainebleau (France), Singapore, and Abu Dhabi. Students receive a global perspective, access to international employers, and a pipeline into multiple offices. Here’s to hoping the school adds San Francisco to its list of full-time MBA campuses.

The “out of the classroom” experiences that this rotational program offers enhance the student experience and are one of the main reasons 92% of graduates find employment within three months of graduating.

Furthermore, INSEAD partners with Wharton to leverage the resources of both schools to give students a one-of-a-kind experience. Gavin Cassar, Research Director of the Alliance says “The INSEAD-Wharton Center for Global Research & Education supports the development of innovative programs and teaching materials involving faculty members from the two schools. It enables initiatives (transatlantic MBA group projects, MBA simulation simultaneously run on three continents) that neither partner could have undertaken on its own.”

Applying to INSEAD San Francisco

In order to apply to the INSEAD MBA program, there are a few criteria you must meet. For the GMAT, INSEAD evaluates you on your specific Quantitative, Verbal and IR scores. Aim to be at or above the 70-75 percentile in quantitative and verbal sections and at a 6 or above in the IR. In addition, an INSEAD MBA candidate must speak two languages upon entry into the program and learn a third language by graduation. Finally, INSEAD encourages individuals that are interested in the program to have at least 2-10 years post graduate professional experience.

For the cohort that begins January 2021, applications can be submitted through July 28. 2020. Fill out the application here.

What to do if you will be applying for consulting as an MBA

Whether you’re an MBA at INSEAD or any other MBA program, how do you prepare for consulting recruiting? Here are a few best practices:

  1. “Consultify” your resume early. Focus on the transferable skills top firms care about (quant analysis, leadership, stakeholder management, etc.) Get this out of the way ahead of time so you can begin to focus on interview prep.
  2. If you are at a non-target program, network early! Firms hold 20% of a cohort’s seats for students from non-target schools. Network early, interview early, and grab one of those slots!
  3. Don’t procrastinate! Start case prep at least 2 months before interviews will start. Follow our case system to maximize your chances of success.


In a world where business education is big business, it’s no surprise that INSEAD is expanding into the U.S. market via San Francisco. For executives looking to broaden their perspectives and up-skill quickly in key areas, be sure to check out the executive education programs happening in San Francisco this year.

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Filed Under: Consulting MBA