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The Wharton School

Business School

Mailing Address
3733 Spruce Street
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104
(215) 898-2575
School Information
"For more than 135 years, Wharton has been the place where visionaries, inventors, and trailblazers get their start. In 1881, American entrepreneur and industrialist Joseph Wharton established the world’s first collegiate school of business at the University of Pennsylvania — a radical idea that revolutionized both business practice and higher education. Since then, the Wharton School has continued innovating to meet mounting global demand for new ideas, deeper insights, and transformative leadership. We blaze trails, from the nation’s first collegiate center for entrepreneurship in 1973 to our latest research centers in alternative investments and neuroscience." "The Wharton MBA offers three fully integrated, interdisciplinary programs: the Lauder MBA/MA Joint Degree in International Studies, the Carey JD/MBA Program, and the MBA in Health Care Management. Our deferred admission program, The Moelis Advance Access Program, offers both undergraduate and full-time master’s students in their final year of study a guaranteed pathway to the Wharton MBA after pursuing two to four years of quality work experience." Wharton has an MBA class size of 874 students (

Actions Taken

Admissions Policies
  • Wharton's MBA for Executives Program published a variety of stories related to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and states it is "committed to recruiting a diverse class of leaders and to creating a safe space for them to learn where everyone feels welcome."
  • Wharton's Doctoral Program has a "strong commitment to the recruitment and retention of underrepresented minorities to the PhD program and we are always working on new ways to reach out to new potential applicants through a variety methods."
Anti-Racism, Bias, and Diversity Training
  • The "Wharton Intergroup Dialogue & Inclusion Team" at Wharton "aims to create an educational space where conversations around inclusion, diversity, and community can flourish, enrich our work and personal lives, and to practice and model behavior of being open-minded, curious, and solution oriented."
  • Wharton's "Leading Diversity" series is designed to "help students navigate diverse settings more effectively and improve their ability to work within and lead diverse teams and global organizations."
  • For Juneteenth in 2021, Wharton hosted a virtual lecture with Wharton Dean Erika James and antiracist activist Ibram X. Kendi to commemorate the day.
  • University press for the Wharton School published an article titled "Leader Conversations on Diversity & Inclusion with Wharton Staff," where the Associate Director of Undergraduate Student Life Aman Goyal shared how to create a more inclusive work environment through the Wharton Intergroup Dialogue & Inclusion Tea (WIDIT).
Disciplinary Measures
  • Wharton's Sexual Harassment "FAQs for Students" webpage includes a link to Penn's "Bias Incident Reporting Form."
Program and Research Funding
  • The Successful Transition & Empowerment Program (STEP) is offered through the Wharton Undergraduate School and "prepare[s] students from historically underrepresented backgrounds to succeed socially, academically, and professionally at Wharton and beyond." STEP is a four-year program that "introduces incoming students to important Wharton and Penn resources, fosters connection and community, and helps members build skills to effectively navigate college, both academically and socially."
  • Wharton offers several fellowship programs that focus on Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) including the "Howard E. Mitchell Fellowship," "Whitney M Young Fellowship," and "Toigo Fellowships." The Toigo MBA Fellowship "provides minority MBA candidates committed to careers in finance with an unmatched network of contacts, a prestigious point of difference in the eyes of employers, one-on-one career guidance, leadership training, a merit award—and more."
  • Wharton has an Undergraduate Diversity and Inclusion Speakers Fund that supports student-run speaker events focusing on DEI and encouraging dialogue and community engagement.
  • Beginning with the 2023-2024 academic year, the Management Department at Wharton has introduced a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion concentration. According to the department, "4.0 credit units are required beyond the Wharton core for the DEI concentration." Examples of DEI courses offered are: "Economics of Diversity" and "Leading Diversity in Organizations."
  • Beginning with the 2023-2024 academic year, the Management Department at Wharton has introduced a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Major which is described as follows: "By investigating how social, psychological, and economic factors affect the performance of individuals, groups, and firms, the Diversity, Equity & Inclusion major prepares students to face the challenges involved in creating and maintaining organizations that are diverse, inclusive, and rooted in equity. As organizations attempt to harness the contributions of many stakeholders, students who pursue the Diversity, Equity & Inclusion concentration will not only be well prepared for DEI-focused careers, they will also be prepared to be leaders of change in any organizational role."
  • The Management Department at Wharton offers a course titled, "Work, Power, and Inequal [sic]," which is described as follows: "We investigate, via an exploration of government regulations and an examination of movements like #MeToo, how government and firm-level human capital policies shape workforce inequalities of race and gender. Throughout the course, we compare the United States with other countries to assess how national institutions influence both productivity and profitability (for firms) and fairness and stability (for workers)."
  • The Management Department at Wharton offers a course titled "Leading Diversity in Org [sic]" which is "designed to help students navigate diverse organizational settings more effectively and improve their ability to work within and lead diverse teams and organizations." The course also "offers students the opportunity to develop their critical thinking on topics such as identity, relationships across difference, discrimination and bias, equality, and equity in organizations and society and how they relate to organizational issues of power, privilege, opportunity, inclusion, creativity and innovation and organizational effectiveness."
  • The Management Department at Wharton offers a course titled "Corporate Diplomacy" which is described in-part as follows: "The share of executives, board members, and investment managers who consider climate risk, racial justice and other ESG issues as well as stakeholder’s opinions of the firm to be material to their business decisions has risen dramatically...This course provides students the latest tools to assess and map stakeholder opinions as well as integrate them into financial valuation."
  • Wharton's Executive Education program states that it is committed to "promoting diversity, equality, and inclusion in our educational programming and through our employment practices."
  • In May 2021, Wharton published a document titled "Improving Workplace Culture Through Evidence-Based Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Practices." The introduction states the following: "We have been living through a time like no other in modern history. Over the last year, people around the world have simultaneously faced a global pandemic responsible for more than 2.6 million deaths; observed — and in many cases — participated in the world’s largest work-from-home experiment; and witnessed a global movement to end systemic racism and police brutality. The enormity of these combined events has motivated company leaders to consider more closely the toll they have taken on employees’ lives. Acknowledging the disparate impact on certain segments of the workforce, including women, people of color, and front-line workers has motivated leaders to commit to diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) more intentionally and become more transparent about their company’s DEI-related progress."
  • Wharton’s "Initiatives for Teaching And Learning Excellence encourages professors to consider diversity and representation when creating their academic programs."
  • On October 30, 2020, the school published an article titled "Race and Work 2020: How Executives Can Harness the Power of Belonging to Create Inclusive Organizations," which states that "[m]ore organizations are waking up to the importance of implementing diversity efforts, but despite good intentions to create inclusive workplaces, executives often miss the mark."
  • On October 25, 2022, Fortune Magazine published an article titled "Wharton to offer diversity major to prepare students for ‘new realities of leadership,’" which reported that Wharton would "offer students a new program of study in diversity, equity, and inclusion, beginning in the 2023-2024 academic year." According to the article, "[c]ourses will teach students how to simultaneously deliver on the ethical promise of DEI efforts and deliver financial gains."
  • On June 23, 2021, Wharton Stories published the transcript of a virtual lecture given by Ibram X. Kendi to commemorate Juneteenth. The lecture was hosted by Wharton Dean Erika James.
  • Wharton's recommended reading list, updated as of June 9, 2023, to celebrate Juneteenth includes "How to be an Anti-Racist" by Ibram X. Kendi and "White Fragility" by Robin DiAngelo.
  • The mission of the ESG initiative at Wharton is to "to harness the power of business to 'solve the social problems incident to our civilization.'” Wharton states that it will do this by "conducting research that investigates the intersection of ESG factors and business and by further advancing our best-in-class education of current and future practitioners, enabling them to serve a world undergoing tremendous change."
  • Wharton announced that as of the 2023-2024 academic year, "in addition to existing programs in Business, Energy, Environment and Sustainability, students can academic paths." Wharton is now offering "two MBA majors and an undergraduate concentration that will provide in-depth foundations for those interested in the complex relationships between business and the natural environment and business and society more broadly." These majors include "ESGB: Environmental, Social and Governance Factors for Business" and "SOGO: Social and Governance Factors for Business."
  • Wharton houses several centers and labs that focus on environmental, social and governance (ESG) research including the: "Climate Center," "Impact Investing Research Lab," "Political Risk and Identity Lab," and the "Zicklin Center for Governance & Business Ethics."
  • The Lauder Institute of Management & International Studies within the Wharton School incorporates discussion of "gender inequality, LGBTQ+, indigenous people, and differences in welfare and well-being" into its inquiry of the "development of social, political, and economic institutions." In 2020, the Lauder Institute established a taskforce that focused on racism and racial injustice.
  • Wharton’s Leadership Education and Development (LEAD) Program encourages youth of diverse backgrounds to pursue undergraduate degrees in business.
  • Wharton holds diversity-focused conferences such as the Howard E. Mitchell Memorial Conference, Black Ivy League Business Conference, Whitney M. Young Memorial Conferences, Wharton Women's Summit, and the Women in Business Academia Conference.
  • The Introduction to Diversity in Doctoral Education and Scholarship (IDDEAS) is a two-day program that seeks to introduce a diverse group of promising undergraduate students to business research at the doctoral level in hopes of encouraging student and faculty diversity. Ideal candidates for IDDEAS Scholars are current college sophomores, juniors, or seniors with strong quantitative skills and academic records.
  • In collaboration with the Office of DEI, Wharton hosts an annual Tenure Project Conference that draws together educators from across the country and represents a "collective commitment to helping underrepresented junior faculty members achieve tenure within a system where historical odds have often been stacked against them."
  • The Wharton Coalition for Equality and Opportunity (Wharton CEO)'s mission is to "equip current and future leaders with the critical skills needed to design equitable organizations, create positive outcomes in the business sector, and grow wealth creation opportunities." Wharton CEO partners with for-profit and non-profit entities to address inequity through research in fields like healthcare, finance, education, sports and entertainment, and tangible workplace solutions.
  • Starting in the 2023-24 academic year, Wharton undergraduate students can declare a concentration in Environmental, Social, and Governance Factors for Business (ESGB). In addition to the option of having an ESGB concentration without specialization, ESGB concentrators may choose to earn one of two transcript-level specializations--Business, Energy, Environment and Sustainability (BEES) or Social and Governance (SOGO).
  • The Wharton School partnered with Deloitte to announce a new research initiative with the goal of advancing inclusive leadership within organizations. Deloitte and Wharton hope to "gain a more nuanced understanding of effective sponsorship and mentorship of minorities, or Persons Excluded due to Ethnicity or Race (PEER) and use the research to enable Deloitte professionals, other organizations, and Wharton students on how to become more inclusive leaders."
  • The Center for Leadership and Change Management at Wharton is launching an initiative to support research on under-represented minorities in the workplace with a particular focus on women of color. Research proposals will be peer reviewed and grants of up to $7,500 will be provided for expenses including research assistants, summer interns, data collection, surveys, and other direct research costs.
  • Wharton has an Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion group whos mission is to "increase the satisfaction of Wharton Undergraduate Students with historically lower satisfaction," and its vision is to promote an inclusive Wharton community where students of all backgrounds feel that Wharton is a "safe, comfortable, and equal space."
Symbolic Actions
  • On October 5, 2020, Penn Today published an article titled, "Why anti-racism education belongs in business schools," where the co-presidents of the Wharton African American MBA Association discussed their work leading the Black community's response to Black Lives Matter and the impacts the movement has had on them and their communities.
  • On June 10, 2020, the Wharton Magazine published an article titled "Speaking Out on Racism as a Company Leader," where Wharton management professor Stephanie Creary offered advice for how to pen a "substantive public statement" on racism. Advice includes being real, compassionate, and unapologetic, as well as doing something different.
Last updated November 10th, 2023
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