The Financial Times announced today that the University of Virginia Darden School of Business’ rose to No. 23 globally and No. 12 among U.S. schools in the newspaper’s Global MBA 2019 rankings. This year’s global ranking rose nine spots and the U.S. ranking rose five spots in the publication’s overall assessment of the School. Notably, alumni ranked the School’s career services No. 11 in the world, up three spots from 2018 and Darden topped two Financial Times specialty rankings: No. 1 in the world for corporate social responsibility and No. 1 in the world for general management.
Average income three years after graduation and the increase between graduates’ pre- and post-MBA salaries represent two alumni criteria critical to the Financial Times methodology. According to Financial Times data gleaned from the MBA Class of 2015, Darden alumni experienced a 114% increase in pre-MBA salary to current salary—tied with other top business schools like Wharton, Columbia and Tuck and two spots above Harvard.
These rankings serve as testaments to the record-breaking career outcomes achieved by Darden’s best-in-class Career Development Center (CDC) and the career-driven graduates from the Class of 2018—who within 90 days of graduating, received the highest average salary in the School’s history at $127,767.
“When Darden’s talented students collaborate closely with the CDC’s career advising team throughout their two years at Darden, we see exceptional results,” said Assistant Dean of Career Development Jeff McNish. “This year’s Financial Times ranking demonstrates the strength of that unique and unrivaled partnership.”
While the Financial Times methodology contains 20 different criteria, career outcomes carry a 57 point weight in determining a school’s ranking. When compared to other publications reviewing graduate business school performance, Financial Times places the second highest weight on graduates’ career outcomes—preceded by Forbes (100 percent in 2018) and followed by The Economist (55 percent in 2018), U.S. News (50 percent in 2018) and Bloomberg Businessweek (39 percent in 2018).
The 2019 Financial Times ranking joins the School’s recent host of top career-related accolades, which include the following:
No. 1 — Best MBA for Consulting
No. 3 — Best MBA for Management
No. 6 — Best Career Prospects
No. 7 — Best MBA for Finance
No. 7 — Graduate School for Entrepreneurship
No. 1 — Best Education Experience
No. 9 — Alumni Effectiveness
No. 9 — MBA Program (U.S.)
No. 10 — Post-MBA Salary
No. 9 — MBA Program (Globally)
In the past two years, Darden made significant investments in building upon the strength of its career center. With these investments, the CDC hired three new experienced Senior Directors who will create increased opportunities in the highly desirable industries of consulting, finance and technology, built service-driven, personalized experiences for recruiters through sector-specific assigned engagement managers and created advanced data collection systems to facilitate career research, advising and student outcomes.
“The CDC team works tirelessly to facilitate personalized job searches for Darden students, while providing unparalleled services for our recruiting partners,” said McNish. “Year after year, we deliver outstanding results for our students and recruiters. The 2019 Financial Times affirms and celebrates our students’ career successes during and long after their time at Darden.”