Business program retains top 20 rank

GW’s international business department maintained its 16th-place position last week in U.S. News & World Report’s annual ranking of the nation’s best business programs.

The department shares the spot with Indiana University and University of Missouri at St. Louis for the second year in a row. As a whole, the School of Business rose one spot to No. 38 – its ninth year as a top 50 school, Dean Susan Phillips said.

“Rankings don’t capture everything but they do give information to employers. It’s important for parents and for students,” Phillips said. “We don’t spend all day thinking about the rankings but they are important.”

Despite recent statements by the University’s top administrators that rankings cannot capture the true value of a university – after GW was ranked 53rd overall – the School of Business flaunted their top scores, sending a news release and highlighting the scores on social media sites. The international program’s rank hasn’t changed over the past two years, and the school earned the No. 41 spot in 2007.

Faculty in the international business department are pleased with the department’s rank, but feel that it is because GW has one of the most well-known international business departments in the country.

“I assume that our visibility is high and many other schools are aware about our programs,” department chair Fernando Robles said. “This can be attributed not only to quality of the program but also to the fact that we are one of the most established programs.”

Robles said “curriculum changes or quality of teaching do not have an immediate impact” on the rankings.

In a statement released by the University, Lawrence Singleton, associate dean for undergraduate programs, said the 2010 rankings prove the School of Business has “solid foundations.”

Students in the School of Business also said they are happy that their school is receiving national attention.

“The fact that GW accepts only a certain percentage of students into the business school, I think that makes the experience,” junior Hamadoun Cisse said. “I think the students are smarter and ready to study and concentrate on their studies.”

Many freshmen said these rankings made them feel confident about their decision to come to GW.

“I’ve never been too big on the numbers before, but it’s pretty cool to know,” freshman Josh Majewski said. “It makes it more up there so GW can compete with other business schools.”

Now that the school has consistently stayed in the top 50 and the international business department is ranked in the top 20, Robles hopes that the reputation of the department will stay high in the face of increased competition.

“The challenge is to maintain the rankings as many other schools with good international business programs are making inroads in the top 20, including some of our local competitors,” Robles said.

Nicole Pozzi contributed to this report.

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