Darden School of Business - University of Virginia
Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia hosts one of the nation’s premiere MBA programs. The UVA business school opened in 1955 and gets its name from former Virginia Governor Colgate Whitehead Darden Jr. With 18,000 alumni scattered across 90 countries worldwide, Darden School of Business is a global force in producing the future business leaders of the world. Former McKinsey executive Scott C. Beardsley is the current Dean of Darden; it’s no wonder that McKinsey is one of Darden MBA’s top employers.
The school’s rigorous, purpose-driven education is guided by a four-pillared philosophy, centered around developing confidence and resilience, intellectual and emotional engagement, diversity and inclusion, and inspiring modern business leadership. The school offers both a traditional full-time MBA program and an Executive MBA program, aimed for full-time workers who are established in their careers. An annually-increasing Darden MBA salary average keeps students applying to the competitive program.
A brand new section of the school opened in the DC area in 2019 at the Sands Family Grounds, strengthening the school’s ties to the nation’s capital. For graduates who want to explore another country during their MBA tenure, Darden School of Business offers study abroad opportunities through exchange programs at over 10 universities across Europe and Asia.
Darden School of Business Overview
Let’s take a look at some key statistics about Darden. Check out key data, including Darden MBA salary by position. Here are some highlights based on the Darden employment report and other school sources.
|School Rank (according to US News & World Report)||#14|
|Course Duration (i.e., 1 year or 2 year full time program)||21 months|
|GMAT Range||660-750 (10th percentile to 90th percentile)|
|Approx. Class Size||340|
|Avg. Work Experience||5 years|
|Tuition Cost (per year)||$66,322 (in-state), $68,640 (out-of-state)|
|Average Age of Student||28 years old|
|Overall Average Base Salary||$144,933|
|Average Signing Bonus||$33,266|
|Consulting Average Base Salary||$155,997|
|% Employed after 3 months||93%|
|Locations||Charlottesville, Virginia (main location), Washington DC area, Shanghai, San Francisco Bay Area, plus partner schools in 5 continents.|
Beyond the traditional MBA program, Darden School of Business offers many dual degree programs. Those programs include:
- General Management
- International Business
- Manufacturing and Technology Management
- Not-For-Profit Management
- Production/Operations Management
- Organizational Behavior
- Portfolio Management
- Supply Chain Management/Logistics
- Quantitative Analysis/Statistics and Operations Research
- MBA/SAIS MA (Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies)
- MBA/MA (East Asian Studies, Government Or Foreign Affairs)
- Executive MBA
- MS Business Analytics
- Executive Education
Are you divided into cohorts? Yes
Darden School of Business teaches MBA students through the case method approach. Each class of ~340 students at the UVA business school are grouped into Learning Teams of six to tackle complicated cases. There is a core curriculum for all first-year students, while second year students are free to dive into different specialized areas. Top hiring companies include Goldman Sachs, Microsoft, Amazon, McKinsey & Company, and other corporate powerhouses.
Can you do a joint degree while at the school? Ex: MBA/MD between HBS and Harvard Medical School: Yes
What Makes Darden School of Business Unique?
One distinctive element of Darden School of Business is that the entire first year curriculum is rooted in the case method. The intent of this practice is to engage students as participants, rather than recipients, of lectures and other teacher styles. Alumni say this is a hands-on approach that is intense, but highly rewarding. Darden’s accomplished crop of professors are deeply devoted to both research and teaching and create space for one-on-one time with students. Because the case method of teaching is highly engaging, Professors at Darden know how to keep the class on their toes and entertained while absorbing tailored business curriculum.
An expansive list of active clubs creates a fun and fulfilling environment at Darden. Affinity, athletic, outreach, and job function clubs are some of the many student groups at the school. Comedy, outdoors, soccer, photography, and many other clubs hold space at the school.
Part of Darden’s mission is to host conferences that engage students on a variety of subjects. Conferences on subjects like leadership, investing, and other topics are part of the annual slate of events.
What is the Darden School of Business Campus like?
The main campus of Darden School of Business is located in Charlottesville, a city nestled in the stunning Blue Ridge Mountains. The UVA business school buildings are in the “North Grounds” area of campus, which helps the MBA campus feel like its own community within UVA. There are many traditions that create a close-knit culture at the business school, including First Coffee, Resilience Week, Global Week, and Love is Love Week, among other student-led and faculty-led initiatives.
There are many notable alumni of the Darden School of Business. The list includes:
- Mark Sanford- Governor of South Carolina (2003-2011)
- Ned Hooper- CSO of Cisco Systems Inc
- John D. Shafer Jr.- Former CEO of Dunkin’
- Viviana Zocco- CEO of TKM
- Patrick J. Sweeney, author of Fear is Fuel
- John Strangfeld- former CEO of Prudential Financial
Darden Employment Report
The Darden Employment Report once again demonstrates the program’s success in setting up graduates for success in their business careers. International students with non-permanent work visas saw great results, with 82% accepting full-time work options by graduation. The average base salary increased by nearly $5,000 compared to the MBA program’s 2020 graduates. The bottom line, of course, is that 93% of graduates are employed within three months of graduation and the average Darden MBA salary is $144,933.