Stanford GBS

The Leland Stanford Junior University, commonly known as Stanford University,  is a private university founded by railroad magnate and California Governor Leland Stanford and his wife, Jane Stanford. The University was named in the honour of their son, Leland Stanford, Jr. who died of typhoid as a teenager. Stanford is located in Stanford, which is located in the world-renowned Silicon Valley, California. The University is often referred to as “The Farm” because it is located on the same place what was once the site of Leland Stanford’s horse farm. Stanford is widely regarded as one of the most prestigious universities in the United States. It enrolls around 7000 undergraduates and 8900 graduate students. The University has approximately 1700 faculty members including 19 Nobel Laureates and 23 McArthur fellows.

Stanford offers MBA programs through its Graduate School of Business (GSB), which is widely regarded as one of the premier business schools in the world. Stanford GSB is almost always listed among the top five programs in the world in all the leading B-school rankings. This consistently high ranking can be attributed to the scope of the school’s research endeavours, its role in the development of Silicon Valley’s leading businesses, and the prominence of its alumni in many leading venture capital and private equity firms, consultancies, and emerging tech companies.

The Stanford Graduate School of Business was founded by the business leaders on the American West Coast as they were concerned that California’s young people were moving to the East Coast to attend business schools and then were remaining there. The school was proposed by Herbert Hoover (who later became U.S. President) when he was the secretary of commerce in the Calvin Coolidge cabinet. The school was established in 1925.

There are currently 799 MBA candidates and 101 PhD candidates enrolled at the GSB. The Stanford GSB has historically been the most selective business school in the U.S., where, for the class of 2012, only 6.8% of applicants were offered admission.  The average GMAT score was 728 and the students had an average work experience of four years. Almost 50 per cent of students had humanities or social science degrees, about 35% had engineering degrees, and the remaining had business degrees. Around ten per cent of the students had advance degrees in their respective fields.

The school is relatively diverse compared to its peer institutions. The most recent class was approximately 35% female, 20% ethnic minorities, and 42% international. Last year’s intake of approximately 400 students represents more than 50 different countries and 159 different colleges and universities. The student body also has Fulbright scholars and Coro, Gardner, Rhodes, Rotary, and Truman fellows.

There are three Nobel Prize winners on the faculty (Michael Spence, Myron Scholes, and William Sharpe). The GSB has 18 members of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and five members of the National Academy of Sciences and three recipients of the John Bates Clark Medal in Economics. The GSB faculty maintains very close links with the venture capital, finance, and technology firms located in the Silicon Valley.

All the major companies hire Stanford MBAs and the top four hiring industries were financial services, management consulting, technology, and consumer products. The median base salary offered by the companies was around U.S.$125,000 and the average sign on bonus was U.S.$20,000.

Stanford GSB operates with an annual operating revenue U.S.$156 million and is the second wealthiest business school in the U.S. with an estimated endowment of over U.S.$980 million and a per capita endowment similar to that of Harvard Business School. Stanford GSB has partnerships with other leading business schools. The school offers a number of Executive Education programs jointly with Harvard Business School, MIT Sloan School of Management, and the London Business School.


  • Jeffrey Bewkes, President & COO, Time Warner
  • Carlos Brito, CEO, Anheuser–Busch InBev
  • John Browne, Chairman, BP
  • Sir Howard Davies, Director of the London School of Economics, former Deputry Governor of the Bank of England
  • Robert Fisher, Chairman, Gap, Inc.
  • Vinod Khosla, Billionaire, Co-Founder, Sun Microsystems, and Founder, Khosla Ventures. Venture Capitalist, Kleiner, Perkins, Caufield & Byers
  • Phil Knight, Billionaire. President, CEO and Founder, Nike, Inc.
  • Richard Kovacevich, Former Chairman and CEO, Wells Fargo
  • Henry A. McKinnell, Chairman and CEO, Pfizer Inc.
  • Scott McNealy, Co-founder, Chairman, & former CEO, Sun Microsystems
  • Tom Peters, Best-selling author and management guru

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