SC Johnson College of Business (Cornell University)

Cornell University #

City: Ithaca 

State: New York

Country: United States 

Year Founded: 1946

Average GMAT: 700 (Median)

About #

SC Johnson College of Business does business with impact. Students at SC Johnson grow into leaders who are empowered to share prosperity. Located in Ithaca, New York, SC Johnson is a part of Cornell University, a world-renowned university. With three different schools within the same business college, SC Johnson prides itself on specialization and collaboration. Located within SC Johnson is the Charles H. Dyson School of Applied Economics and Management, The School of Hotel Administration, and the Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management. With 43,800 Alumni around the world, 19 different degree programs, and 255 prestigious faculty, SC Johnson College of Business helps students grow and develop into empowered leaders. 

Rankings  #

Financial Time 2021 Global MBA Ranking #15

USNews – Best Business Schools #15

USNews – Executive MBA #12

Q.S. Global MBA Rankings 2021 #32

MBA Program Overview #

The Full-Time, 2-year MBA program at SC Johnson College of Business is meant for prospective MBA graduates who want a hands-on and immersive experience. Through STEM-designated courses, students learn the analytical and leadership skills necessary to set themselves apart in the professional business world. The Two-Year program has three basic principles forming the foundation of their curriculum. 

  1. That all aspects of the MBA program – Marketing, Finance, Human Resources, and Production – are all solid and worth their value
  2. Stressing the importance of students obtaining strong analytical and decision-making skills
  3. Flexibility for students to tailor their individual curriculum

Featured Professors #

Robert Libby

Professor Libby is the David A. Thomas Professor of Management and the Area Coordinator for Accounting at SC Johnson. His research area is Behavioral Economics and Decision Research. He teaches financial accounting, financial statement analysis, and behavioural decision theory. He is well-published, including writing a book titled: Accounting and Human Information Processing: Theory and Applications. Because of his works, Professor Libby has been the recipient of the AAA/AIPA Notable Contribution to the Literature Award. Professor Libby received his B.S. from Pennsylvania State University in 1970, his CPA from Illinois State University in 1971, his M.A. and MAS from University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign in 1971, and his Ph.D. from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign in 1974.

Ya-Ru Chen

Professor Chen is the Nicholas H. Noyes Professor of Management as well as the Academic Dean of China Initiatives. She works in the management and organizations faculty area. Her research themes are Behavioral Economics and Decision Research, and Emerging Markets and Development. Professor Chen researches cross-cultural differences and similarities in employees’ behaviors and attitudes. She compares employees in different cultures and their reaction to performance feedback. As well as how they relate to their own group and other groups and their negotiations with business counterparts. She is well-published, including having been featured in Psychological Review, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Administrative Science Quarterly, Management Science, Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, and Organization Science. She previously worked at Stern School of New York and Rutgers Business School. She earned her B.A. from Soochow University in 1986, her M.A. from Teachers College Columbia University in 1991, and her PhD from Columbia University in 1996.

Year One Description #

During the first year, students can expect to take courses meant to establish a strong foundation in business fundamentals. With team-based competitions and semester-long immersion and fieldwork, the first year will prepare students for their summer internship and professional work after graduation. 

Fall Semester Mandatory Classes

  • Leading Teams
  • Financial Accounting
  • Microeconomics for Management
  • Marketing Management
  • Critical and Strategic thinking
  • Managerial Finance
  • Strategy

Spring Semester Mandatory Classes

  • Managing Operations
  • Data Analytics and Modeling

Year Two Description #

During their second year, students in the two-year full-time MBA program take courses in Principled Leadership where they learn self-reflection and self-assessment to make themselves well-rounded leaders. The rest of the year is fully customizable, with students able to take courses from Cornell’s many other colleges and schools. 

Application Process #

Applicant Requirements

The admissions committee looks at numerous aspects of an application when considering admission. They look for: 

  • Outstanding Academic Credentials
  • A notable resume with professional accomplishments
  • Thoughtful essays
  • Competitive test scores (either GMAT or GRE)
  • Drive to make a positive impact
  • Clear communication and goal-driven


All successful applicants hold a bachelor’s degree. Official transcripts can be submitted either electronically or via snail-mail. 

GMAT/GRE Information

There is no minimum GMAT or GRE scores for applicants. However, prospective applicants should keep in mind the 80% medians scores of admitted students. 

Foreign Language Requirements

Applicants must submit a TOEFL score if they are not from an English speaking country or their university degree was not obtained through an English-speaking university. 

Essay Description

Applicants must submit a Goals Statement in addition to two essays. An additional essay may be submitted if applicants wish to be considered for the Roy H. Park Leadership Fellows Program. 

Essay Question 1

Goals Statement (350-word max.). Applicants should complete the following prompt: 

Immediately post-MBA, my goal is to work as a(n) [role] at [company] within [industry]. 

  • Targeted Job Role:
  • Target job Company:
  • Industry:

In 5-10 years post-MBA, my goal is to work as a(n) [role] at [company] within [industry]

  • Target job role: 
  • Target job company;
  • Industry:

Essay Question 2

At Cornell, our students and alumni share a desire to positively impact the organizations and communities they serve. How do you intend to make an impact during the next several years of your education and/or career? (350 words maximum)

Optional Essay

To apply for the Park Fellowship, please complete this essay (500-word limit).

Describe a past formal or informal leadership experience and how it informs your goals for growth as a leader. How would the Park Leadership Fellowship assist with these goals?


Applicants must submit one letter of recommendation; however, a total of 2 recommendation letters may be submitted. Recommenders should be able to speak to an applicant’s professional experience, leadership, and intellectual abilities. Individuals such as current supervisors, colleagues, clients or former supervisors. 


Applicants’ resumes should show the professional experience they have accumulated.


Interviews are by invite only. Applicants who receive an offer for an interview means they have made it to the second round of applications. Once the interview is over, applicants will receive either an offer of admission, an invitation to the waitlist, or a rejection.

Application Fee: $200 (non refundable)

Unique Aspects #

Immersion Learning

SC Johnson offers students an entire semester of the hands-on and intensive integrated course and fieldwork. This opportunity allows students to put theory into practice and utilize what they learned in the classroom in the real world. Students can take immersion courses in Digital Technology, Investment Banking, Corporate Finance, Strategic Operations, Strategic Product and Marketing, Sustainable Global Enterprise, and Investment Research and Asset Management. Students can also customize their immersion experience to better suit their interests. During the immersion learning, which takes place during the second semester of their first year, students dive into electives, site visits, and live cases to help them gain hands-on experience in areas they are most interested in.

Alternatives to the MBA

Not only does SC Johnson offer a full-time two-year MBA program, but they offer prospective students with other MBA programs which suit the needs of their applicants. Applicants interested in attending SC Johnson can apply to any of the following MBA programs:

One-Year MBA program: an accelerated program with a flexible curriculum which can help fast-track students’ careers

Cornell Tech MBA: Those interested in the digital economy should consider the Cornell Tech MBA. Students in this program study for a year and learn about networks and industry in order to develop skills essential for working in the digital and tech economy.

Cornell Executive MBA: Meant for professionals who wish to return to graduate school after spending time working in the professional business world. This program allows students to return to the classrooms without forfeiting their career trajectory and momentum.

Cornell Tsinghua Finance MBA: A dual degree program where students work under a partnership with the PBC School of Finance at Tsinghua University in Beijing. This program has a focus on international finance and is meant for working professionals based in China.

Student Life #

Student life at SC Johnson is both an intense and collaborative community. Class sizes are small, and so students learn to form and with a personal community of their peers. Students benefit from the numerous clubs and organizations offered. Whether they wish to participate in an extracurricular which accelerates their career or a fun after-class activity where they can integrate their hobbies, students have the opportunity to find fulfillment in their studies and within the SC Johnson community.

Costs #

  • Total Cost: $99760 (Per year for 2-year MBA)
  • Tuition: $71,940
  • Books and Supplies: $1,100
  • Health Insurance: $3,420
  • Room and Boards: $16,800
  • Extra Expenses (ie. Transportation/Food): $5,000
  • Fees $1,500

Class of 2022 Profile #

  • Program Length: 2 years
  • Total Enrollment: 292
  • Average Age: 28
  • Women: 31% 
  • US Minorities: 39% 
  • International Students: 34% 
  • Countries Represented: 29

Undergraduate Degrees

  • Business 48%
  • Engineering 15%
  • Social Sciences 11%
  • Sciences 9%
  • Humanities 7%
  • Other 10%

Average GPA: 3.34

Average Work Experience: 5 years

Previous Work Locations/Fields

  • Financial Services 30%
  • Consulting 11%
  • Technology 11%
  • Government / Non-Profit 8%
  • Manufacturing 5%
  • Healthcare 3%
  • Other 31%

Employment Report, Class of 2020 #

  • Received an Offer: 93% 
  • Accepted an Offer: 90% 
  • Median Salary: $138,767 (Average)
  • Median Signing Bonus: $36,391 (Average)

Top Industry Destinations

  • Financial Services (34%)
  • Consulting (30%)
  • Technology (16%)
  • Consumer Products (10%)
  • Healthcare (3%)
  • Energy/Utilities (1%)
  • Entertainment/Media (1%)
  • Law or Legal (1%)
  • Manufacturing (1%)
  • Non-Profit/Other (1%)
  • Real Estate (1%)
  • Retail (1%)

Top Function Destinations

  • Finance (35%)
  • Consulting (30%)
  • General Management (21%)
  • Marketing (9%)
  • Other (4%)
  • Human Resources (1%)

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