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SC Johnson Graduate School of Management – Cornell University

S.C. Johnson Graduate School of Management Two-Year MBA

The Two-Year full-time MBA program at the SC Johnson Graduate School of Management at Cornell University is defined by three principles, according to the school:

1. “The value of a solid education in all key business functions, including marketing, finance, human resources, and production.”

2. “The importance of strong analytical and decision-making skills.”

3. “A focus on offering the greatest flexibility in tailoring individual curricula.”

Taking place at the Cornell Ithaca campus, the first semester of the program is centered around foundation courses, followed by a semester of immersion courses. Students are enrolled in internships in the summer and the final semester of the program is centered around optional concentrations.


Johnson’s faculty and lecturers employ a variety of teaching methods, such as case studies, lectures, group projects, lab exercises and field trips. MBA classes at Johnson typically begin in late August and end in mid-May; commencement occurs shortly thereafter. Johnson works on a semester system, with full-time students completing coursework during the fall and spring terms, and nearly all students go on to complete a summer internship at the end of their first year. Throughout the academic year, Johnson students have short breaks each semester for holidays such as Thanksgiving, with a longer break in between semesters.

Beginning during orientation and extending throughout the first semester, all first-year students participate in the required course entitled the Johnson Leading Teams Practicum. In this course, which is designed to help students develop their leadership skills, MBA entrants work together in small teams of five to six students on problem-solving challenges and core course group projects.

Within the first year of study, Johnson students must complete nine core classes, taking seven in the fall term and completing the remaining two in the spring. The core covers foundational business principles in accounting, marketing, management, operations, strategy and finance. First-year students must also complete an immersion learning experience in the spring semester by choosing from the seven available offerings or creating their own program. Each immersion learning experience is comprised of elective courses, site visits and case studies aimed at preparing students for post-MBA careers in fields such as Strategic Marketing, Capital Markets and Asset Management, and Sustainable Global Enterprise.

In the second year of the MBA program, students have free rein to shape their studies by choosing from the school’s more than 80 elective course offerings. Students may further tailor their education to their career interests by pursuing up to two concentrations from a list of five breadth options and seven depth options. Johnson also allows students to take courses at other Cornell University schools and apply them to the MBA degree. Finally, students looking for international exposure can spend a semester studying abroad at one of Johnson’s 30 exchange partner institutions.

Class Profile

The Johnson Two-Year MBA Class of 2019 enrolled 277 students. Students in the class of 2019 had a mean GMAT score of 700 and a median GPA of 3.36. The incoming class also had a mean of five years of work experience. Twenty-seven percent of the first year students were women, while 12 percent were underrepresented minorities, which refers to students of African American, Native American, and Hispanic American backgrounds. U.S. Citizens accounted for 64 percent of the class, with the remaining portion of students representing 38 countries.

Career Statistics

About 94 percent of Johnson’s most recent Two-Year MBA class received job offers. The mean starting base salary for Johnson graduates was $126,353, while the mean signing bonus accepted by recently minted Johnson MBAs was $33,503. Thirty-two percent of the Class of 2018 accepted finance positions, including the 19 percent pursuing roles in investment banking; consulting was the second most popular function and was chosen by 25 percent of the class. Meanwhile, 12 percent of 2018 Johnson MBA graduates moved into marketing and product management, about 24 percent opted for general management and another 4 percent entered the legal field.

Tuition, Scholarships, and Financial Aid

The tuition for the Cornell Johnson Two-Year MBA is $69,440. However, the school estimates that with additional expenses such as rent and textbooks, students will pay up to $95,340 in that time. To help students finance their studies, Johnson offers a range of merit-based scholarships. Admitted students are automatically considered for certain merit-based awards, and about 30 percent of Johnson students receive related financial support. The most prestigious of scholarships offered to incoming students is the Park Leadership Fellowship, which provides a full-tuition grant to up to 25 entrants. Johnson is part of the Consortium for Graduate Study in Management, an organization devoted to promoting diversity in business schools. MBA candidates may apply through this program to Johnson, and they are then eligible for full-tuition fellowships. For those applicants who did not receive awards during their first year, there is one scholarship opportunity open to returning students, the Fried Fellowship. There is also a variety of loan options available to Johnson students, including federal loan programs for U.S. citizens and private loans for international students. Johnson has partnered with Quorum Federal Credit Union to offer international students loans that do not require a cosigner.


Applicants can elect to apply to Johnson during one of four admissions rounds, which usually occur in October, November, January, and April. Johnson requires applicants to submit their completed online application along with essays, a résumé, GMAT/GRE scores and transcripts from all collegiate and post-collegiate institutions attended. Applicants must also submit one letter of recommendation and an optional second letter, TOEFL or IELTS scores, if needed, and a $200 non-refundable application fee. After applications are evaluated, the admissions committee conducts interviews on an invitation-only basis. Interviews may take place on campus with a current second-year or member of the admissions committee, while those who do not travel to Ithaca can undertake or Skype interviews.

Application Checklist:

• Johnson at Cornell University application:
• Résumé
• Two Required essays (third optional)
• Application Fee of $200 US currency
• List of activities
• Letter of recommendation (second optional)
• Transcripts from all post-secondary coursework and degrees
• GMAT or GRE score report
• English Language Exam score report for applicants whose native language is not English (TOEFL or IELTS)

Application deadlines are as follows:

October Round

Application Deadline: Oct. 8, 2019
Initial Notification: Nov. 15, 2019
Final Notification: Dec. 20, 2019

November Round

Application Deadline: Nov. 5, 2019
Initial Notification: Jan. 15, 2020
Final Notification: Feb. 20, 2020

January Round

Application Deadline: Jan. 8, 2020
Initial Notification: March 20, 2020
Final Notification: April 10, 2020

April Round

Application Deadline: April 8, 2020
Initial Notification: May 8, 2020
Final Notification: June 1, 2020

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