UVA Darden Welcomes Class of 2023 to Grounds

20 August 2021

By Dave Hendrick

FullTime and Executive MBA Classes Set Records for Excellence and Diversity

The University of Virginia Darden School of Business welcomed the MBA Class of 2023 to Grounds with a series of in-person events in recent days, an indication of plans for a more normal fall following a year of hybrid instruction and limited indoor activity on Grounds.

“We’re so incredibly excited to have you here, and especially thrilled to be able to welcome all of you together in person,” Dean Scott Beardsley said at the welcome event for the Full-Time MBA Class of 2023. “The enthusiasm that you’ll see today and in the coming days across Grounds as faculty, staff and peers welcome you — that’s real.”

Beardsley noted the palpable excitement among faculty and staff upon the return of students, and said Darden and UVA leaders planned to do everything within their power to maintain a safe environment in the coming academic year.

Members of the Class of 2023 in both the Full-Time and Executive MBA formats were selected amid record application volume, and represent new high-water marks in a number of metrics — including more than 40 percent women in both formats.

Full-Time MBA Class Includes Record Diversity, Academic Accomplishments

The 351 Full-Time MBA students in the Class of 2023 broke both academic and diversity records on multiple fronts, with new records, including:

  • 40 percent women (ties record)
  • 40 percent international citizens, representing 40 countries
  • 52 Consortium members
  • 21 percent U.S. minority students
  • 13 percent underrepresented minorities
  • 19 percent underrepresented minorities among U.S. citizens
  • 15 percent first-generation college students
  • 59 students with advanced degrees
  • 3.52 average undergraduate GPA

The Class also includes 16 Future Year Scholars, the highest-ever number for Darden’s deferred-enrollment admissions program, which began in 2016.

“This is a really special class, and I think you’re going to be delighted with the company that you’re going to have over the next two years,” Senior Associate Dean for the Full-Time MBA Program Tom Steenburgh said at the opening week event, which also included remarks from Senior Assistant Dean of Admissions Dawna Clarke and Darden Student Association leaders.

Beardsley detailed the ways in which he hoped students would seek to gain the most out of their two years at the School, and said he hoped students would leave with a great, global education; a great career; a powerful network; and have a great time throughout the experience.

“It’s going to be a great week, it’s going to be a great year, and it’s going to be a great two years,” said Beardsley.

Executive MBA Class Makes Strides Toward Gender Parity

The Executive MBA Class of 2023, including students in both the Executive MBA and Global Executive MBA formats, includes 138 students drawn from a record number of applications. The class, which includes 27 students in the Global Executive MBA format, includes:

  • 46 percent women
  • 23 percent U.S. minority students
  • 17 percent underrepresented minorities among U.S. citizens
  • 32 percent with advanced degrees

The class includes students from 16 states and citizenship from eight different countries. It also includes students representing more than 115 employers from 24 industries. The most represented organizations include the United States Navy, Capital One, Accenture, Booz Allen Hamilton and Deloitte.

Students kicked off their first Leadership Residency in Charlottesville on 15 August. The Executive MBA program and most in-person class days are based at UVA Darden DC Metro in Arlington, Virginia.

MSBA Welcomes More Than 50 New Students

The Master of Science in business analytics, which is also based at UVA Darden DC Metro, recently kicked off its academic year with a new cohort of 51 students. The 12-month program, which is presented jointly by Darden and the UVA McIntire School of Commerce, combines a range of data analysis techniques with key business and leadership development instruction.

Students in the new class have seven years average work experience and nearly 30 percent have prior advanced degrees.

When attending classes in Charlottesville this year, students from all programs will enjoy a number of new enhancements across Grounds, including refurbished classrooms and dining and hospitality spaces, among others new features.

The applications for admission to the Full-Time MBA and Executive MBA Class of 2024 and new Part-Time MBA are now available. The application for the MSBA will open soon.

About the University of Virginia Darden School of Business

The University of Virginia Darden School of Business prepares responsible global leaders through unparalleled transformational learning experiences. Darden’s graduate degree programs (MBA, MSBA and Ph.D.) and Executive Education & Lifelong Learning programs offered by the Darden School Foundation set the stage for a lifetime of career advancement and impact. Darden’s top-ranked faculty, renowned for teaching excellence, inspires and shapes modern business leadership worldwide through research, thought leadership and business publishing. Darden has Grounds in Charlottesville, Virginia, and the Washington, D.C., area and a global community that includes 18,000 alumni in 90 countries. Darden was established in 1955 at the University of Virginia, a top public university founded by Thomas Jefferson in 1819 in Charlottesville, Virginia.


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Molly Mitchell
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Darden School of Business
University of Virginia