By Wendy Leonard

Deseret News

Published: Wednesday, March 24, 2010


SALT LAKE CITY — Business schools at the University of Utah and Brigham Young University have scored high on a national student survey for the second consecutive year.

More than 19,000 MBA graduates nationwide recently participated in a survey of how well various schools prepared them for the real world. The U.'s David Eccles School of Business and the BYU Marriott School of Business landed on different lists, but both scored highly.

BYU was accompanied by heavy-hitters such as Columbia, Cornell, New York and Yale universities and others, all making the Princeton Review's top 15 list of schools that best prepare students in finance. The U. was among the 15 best schools in the area of business operations, along with the Georgia Institute of Technology, California State University and Texas Christian University, among others.

"These are the great business schools of the country that everyone talks about," said Steven Thorley, finance department chairman at BYU. "It would be hard to find better company."

He said aside from having "extraordinary students," the school touts a series of courses that allows students to evaluate investments and make deals using real capital, giving them "cutting-edge entrepreneurial finance experience."

"Finance is a part of any good business school, and entrepreneurism is something we've identified that we want to excel at," Thorley said. He's proud to be included in what he says is a "who's who list of business schools."

The 80-question Princeton Review survey asked students to consider classroom and campus resources at 301 business schools across the country and to judge MBA programs in six categories: marketing, operations, finance, accounting, general management and global management. Results will be featured in the April issue of Entrepreneur magazine.

"The Student Opinion Honors couldn't be more timely for those considering a business school education as part of their entrepreneurial journey," Amy Cosper, Entrepreneur's vice president and editor-in-chief said. "Taking a deeper look at how these schools have managed to gain class approval would be the first act of due diligence readying a student for business ownership."

The magazine reported that "the cocoon of the business school gives students the chance to develop their ideas under the mentorship of some of the sharpest minds in the business world. In many cases, it also gives them a chance to fail without destroying their reputations on bank accounts."

U. business school dean Taylor Randall said real-world experience in leadership and business operations is what sets the U. apart from other schools internationally.

"In programs like our University Venture Fund and the Pierre Lassonde Entrepreneur Center, students team up with private equity managers to evaluate the operational strengths and commercial potential of start-up companies," Randall said.

Business schools at the University of Utah and Brigham Young University have scored high...