Fall 2008

In Brief

Prominent Speakers Share Knowledge with Berkeley MBA Class of 2010


Earlier this fall, a lineup of high-profile executives greeted a new class of full-time Berkeley MBA students who boasted the highest average GMAT score in the program's history.

The 240 full-time Berkeley MBAs averaged a GMAT score of 714. Only 12 percent of the 3,779 applicants received admission offers.  Applications increased 15 percent this year from last year.

The students' event-packed Orientation Week was kicked off by Robert Haas, chairman emeritus of Levi Strauss & Co., who spoke about corporate social responsibility.

Other speakers included World of Good CEO Priya Haji, MBA 03; N.W. (Bill) Jasper Jr., CEO, president, and director of Dolby Laboratories; IDEO General Manager Tom Kelley, MBA 83; and Barbara Desoer, MBA 77, president of mortgage, home equity, and insurance services at Bank of America.

Kelley stressed the importance of choosing a career based on the right priorities.

"Find someone who loves what they are doing and ask them how they got there," Kelley said.

Desoer advised students, "Be sure to go where it feels least comfortable because by doing that . . . you will grow the most."


Evening & Weekend MBA Program

The Evening & Weekend MBA Program, meanwhile, received a record-breaking 853 applications this year, and the class's median GMAT score was 700. The class of 243 students includes a former player for the Arizona women's pro football team, a Coast Guard officer, and a former bodyguard. Students have an average eight years of work experience.

Berkeley-Columbia Executive MBA Program

In May, 71 students began their studies as the seventh class in the Berkeley-Columbia Executive MBA Program. Students came from such companies as Intel, Google, Nike, and Barclays Global Investors, and from as far away as Brazil and Korea. In addition to coming from traditional business career paths such as finance, sales, and engineering, the class brings experience from such fields as construction, architecture, law, nonprofit, medicine, and military.   


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Tom Kelley, MBA 83

"Find someone who loves what they are doing and ask them how they got there."


—Tom Kelley, MBA 83, IDEO