Saturday, October 2, 2010

The better half ...

Just got done with our first session post-Philly. While we did miss the fun we had at Philly, it was great to be back on home turf and settle down into our familar classrooms with familar faces sitting at familiar locations :). Had two riveting sessions on managerial accounting from Ittner, and three macro sessions from Abel where we got done with baby steps and are into the core of the macro material now. We also had a talk from Howie Kaufold about the electives process for our second year courses.

What was most heartening for me was that I got to meet two potential class 37 candidates, and both were women. Officially now I've had more potential women students contact me than men. So I thought I'd dedicate this post to that topic. As Wharton EMBA program wins yet another #1 ranking (WSJ), it is sad that like other EMBA programs, the number of women that are part of a typical cohort is not that high. I've heard various reasons for this, including the fact that the typical woman candidate has a child or children at home and that makes it even harder to strike a balance, on top of managing work and school. That the full-time programs get more women applicants because at that stage in their lives it is easier for them to make the commitment to school.

So why am I, a man, writing this post? Firstly, I can speak to the caliber of some of my women classmates out here in SF, as well as a few that I met while at Philly. Not only are they balancing great careers and school, some of them have kids at home as well! Having had the good fortune to have the women closest to me through my life all be super-women that juggled all these responsibilities, I know that it can be done. And that it can be done well if done right. For the folks with kids, I think a cooperative spouse is an amazing support system as couple of my classmates can attest to. For folks without kids, or those that are single, I do wish to learn more about reasons why the applicant pool is not as large as that for men since I firmly believe that there is no dearth of talent.

This is not a "feminist" post or something that's going to refer back to women's empowerment and all that. We all know our history and where the world is today. A woman is no less smart, no less capable, nor less ambitious than a man today. Several of my classmates and other Wharton alums that I've met are living testimony to this. So why is the applicant pool of women in EMBA programs so low?

So if you are a woman reading this blog (including the few that I've spoken to so far) - take the plunge and apply! Its not going to be an easy two years, but I believe that it will transform your lives in more ways that you can imagine right now. If you have any questions feel free to write to us, or talk to us and we're more than happy to put you in touch with folks who have been through similar experiences and can guide you.


  1. Yes! Wharton needs more women. It is hard to juggle family and work, but it can be done. So many do it every year and gain so much from the experience!

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