2014 Leadership Speaker Series

Each year, Darden invites high-level executives and C-suite business leaders hailing from industries such as healthcare, food and beverage, and luxury goods to discuss their approaches to leading in organizations.  Past speakers have included executives from Google, Whole Foods, MasterCard, Electronic Arts, Johnson & Johnson and more.

During their visit, speakers share stories, expertise and advice with Darden students, faculty and staff. This fall’s leadership speaker series schedule is as follows:

All Darden Leadership Speaker Series events are free and open to the public. Prospective students are welcome to attend any of these events.

You can view the complete schedule on the Darden website.

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Darden’s Innovative Curriculum: National Outdoor Leadership School

Each year, Darden launches several new experiential learning courses, giving students the opportunity to practice what they learn in the classroom in a real-world setting. Last December, several Second Year students participated in a pilot program with the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) in the Arizona wilderness. Over the course of one week, the students were responsible for leading each other through 40 miles of canyons and high mountain passes.

In the following video, Mark Silvers (MBA ’14) discusses this field experience with classmates and faculty members in Arizona:

Video: Darden MBA Students Hike Through Arizona with the National Outdoor Leadership School

Read more about the NOLS Field Experience. You can also learn more about Darden experiential electives on our website.

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Experience the Case Method at a Darden Reception in Your City

MBA Admissions Dean Video Blog: Attend a Darden Event in Your City

The enthusiasm with which Darden’s top-ranked faculty teach is infectious, and much of it stems from the School’s dynamic method of teaching. If you’ve heard about our case method approach (we’re one of only a few schools in the country that teach predominantly with this method), you probably wonder how and if it actually changes how and what you learn.

Experience the Case Method at a Darden Reception

If you haven’t experienced the case method in action, we invite you to attend a Darden class. Can’t make it to Charlottesville? In Charlotte, Dallas, Houston and Los Angeles, we’re bringing the case method experience to you.

When you arrive at the event, you’ll receive a short one-page case. You’ll read it while enjoying complimentary refreshments and hors d’oeuvres. Then you’ll discuss what you’ve read in small groups of other prospective students and Darden alumni, who always eagerly embrace the chance to talk about cases from the Darden classroom. These small groups mimic our Darden learning team environment in which you work through questions with several of your classmates before you return to the classroom for a larger case discussion.

Admissions Dean Sara Neher leads a mock case in Philadelphia

MBA Admissions Dean Sara Neher leads a mini-case in Philadelphia

Assistant Dean of MBA Admissions Sara Neher (who also teaches a Second Year elective course) will then lead an engaging conversation about the case with the whole group. The difference between lecture-style classes and Darden’s case method approach will become immediately apparent. Drawing from a diverse set of experiences allows for lively, dynamic conversations that give you a myriad of perspectives on real business problems and the knowledge to make the best decision.

The answers are not black and white, and neither are the decisions you’ll make after business school. Join us for a case discussion and watch the complexity of business come to life the same way it does in the classroom.

Meet Darden MBA Alumni in Your City

Following the case discussion, you will be able to personally speak with our alumni and learn more about their experiences at Darden and beyond.

Meet MBA alumni in your city at a Darden reception

Meet MBA alumni in your city at a Darden reception

While we’re only teaching the mini-case in Charlotte, Dallas, Houston and Los Angeles, you will still be able to meet Darden admissions representatives and alumni at Darden Receptions around the world by attending a Darden Reception.

We hope to see you at one of our events soon!

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The Darden MBA Class of 2016 Profile

Darden is excited to welcome 417 students to the MBA, MBA for Executives (EMBA) and Global MBA for Executives (GEMBA) Class of 2016.

The full-time MBA class — which is 32 percent women and has more Hispanic students than any previous class — includes pilots, painters, rock climbers, a professional musician and a number of professional athletes (one was a National Football League player).

You can learn more about this year’s full-time MBA class profile below:


Learn more about the EMBA and GEMBA class profiles.

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Upcoming Darden Webinars: MBA Student Panel and Career Development

Meet Darden Admissions representatives online every other Wednesday at 12:30 – 1:15 p.m. (Eastern Time) during our Darden Admissions Webinars. These live, bi-weekly webinars will feature different topics to help you learn more about what distinguishes the Darden experience, faculty and network from other top MBA programs.

To participate these webinars, simply log into our online platform as a guest at the time of the event.

The Experience: An MBA Student Panel

Wednesday, 10 September 2014
12:30 – 1:15 p.m. Eastern Time

Join SY Darden students for an interactive panel on life at Darden and in Charlottesville. Hear firsthand accounts of how Darden’s inspiring and intense experience in and out of the classroom prepared them for their summer internships. We welcome any and all questions!

Career Development at Darden

Wednesday, 24 September 2014
12:30 – 1:15 p.m. Eastern Time

Darden’s Career Development Center provides you with several resources to prepare you for a career in any industry. Learn about our unique integrated career curriculum, one-on-one professional career advising, Second Year student coaches, on- and off-Grounds recruiting, job treks, career clubs, workshops and conferences, and more. There will be a 15-minute presentation, followed by a 30-minute Q&A session.

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MBA Admissions Events: On the Road With Top Business Schools

September brings lots of travel for the Darden admissions team; in addition to Darden Receptions, Forté Forums and Consortium MAPs events, we are partnering with several schools to host MBA admissions events across the U.S. and around the world.

We invite you to learn more about Darden and other top business schools in your city and introduce yourself to the Darden Admissions Committee member at your event!

During the week of 8 September, come meet Kristen Egan in Ann Arbor, Minneapolis, and Toronto.  Or join Catie Yeilding in Texas for events in Dallas, Austin and Houston.

Cheryl Jones will be in Miami, Charlotte and Atlanta during the week of 15 September. Later in the month, Katherine Alford will be coming to Europe and looks forward to meeting candidates in London, Paris, and Madrid!

And finally, for those in Southeast Asia, please join Rita Morrow in Taipei, Ho Chi Minh, Singapore and Jakarta.

To learn about Darden receptions and other events, please visit our Events & Receptions page. We look forward to meeting you and sharing more about the Darden experience.

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Military at Darden Open House on 13 October

Greetings from the Darden Military Association (DMA)!

My name is Will Kohlbrenner, and I’m executive vice president of the DMA. This fall, Darden will be hosting a Military Open House on 13 October. Active duty military and veteran applicants are highly encouraged to attend. In addition to the normal open house schedule, the DMA will be hosting several military-specific discussions and social events. You can register for the Military Open House on the Darden website. The DMA will reach out to you with details on DMA activities for prospective students as we get closer to the event.

If you have any questions regarding the MBA admissions process or about Darden in general, I invite you to reach out to our VP of Admissions Carter Harris. You can also visit the Darden Military Association website for more information on life at Darden.

Thank you, and we hope to see you there!

Will Kohlbrenner
Executive Vice President
Darden Military Association
MBA Class of 2015

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Darden Ranked Among Best Business Schools for Hispanics

Darden ranks No. 7 among the 2014 Best Business Schools for Hispanics, according to HispanicBusiness.com. Rankings criteria includes Hispanic postgraduate enrollment, number of Hispanic faculty members and programs that attract and retain Hispanic students.

The Darden School is an official university partner for the National Society of Hispanic MBAs (NSHMBA). NSHMBA works to prepare Hispanics for leadership positions throughout the United States so that they can provide the cultural awareness and sensitivity vital in the management of the nation’s diverse work force. In addition to NSHMBA, Darden partners with the Consortium for Graduate Study in Management, Management Leadership for Tomorrow, the JumpStart Advisory Group and Riordan MBA Fellows to recruit highly-qualified minority applicants and increase diversity in leadership positions. As a member of the Ten School Diversity Alliance, we actively recruit at Hispanic-serving universities.

We encourage you to learn more about Hispanic MBAs at Darden by reading this blog post by Darden alumna Angie Alam (MBA ’14) or visiting the Hispanic American Network at Darden (HAND) website.

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Consortium MBA Application Preparation Seminars  

Darden will be participating in Consortium MBA Application Preparation Seminars (MAPS) in September. At these events, you will learn about Darden and other top business schools, meet MBA alumni, and hear about the admissions process, fellowship opportunities and the benefits of Consortium membership.

Consortium MAPS Event Locations

Los Angeles, CA
San Francisco, CA
Chicago, IL
Atlanta, GA
Houston, TX
New York, NY
Washington, D.C.

Register or view additional Darden events

We hope to see you at one or more of these events!

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MBA Entrepreneurship and Innovation Open House

At Darden, you can launch your own entrepreneurial venture while learning from award-winning entrepreneurship faculty and a thriving network of student and alumni entrepreneurs. Join us in Charlottesville to learn more about Darden’s entrepreneurship and innovation programs and the Charlottesville ecosystem that supports our iLab and incubator.

On Sunday, 14 September have dinner with members of Darden’s Entrepreneurship & Venture Capital Club followed by the Open House on Monday, 15 September.  Monday’s programming begins at 8:30 a.m. and concludes at 4:15 p.m. The agenda includes a welcome from the senior leadership at Darden along with:

  • Class visit
  • Career Development Center presentation
  • Admissions and Financial Aid panel
  • Lunch with student club leaders
  • Tour of the Darden Grounds
  • Faculty discussion: Entrepreneurship & Innovation
  • Optional tour of the UVA Darden iLab
  • Optional office hours with student career coaches

Register for the Entrepreneurship and Innovation Open House.

We look forward to welcoming you to the Darden Grounds.  If you are unable to attend the Open House in September, please go to our Visit Darden website to learn about other visit opportunities.

Learn more about Darden and Charlottesville’s innovative and collaborative community in the video below:

Video: Darden Students Consult With Entrepreneurs in the Charlottesville Community

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