Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management: Everything You Need to Know


Cornell University’s Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management (Cornell Johnson) offers both the intimacy of a close-knit college town and the vast possibilities offered by the more metropolitan cities nearby. In addition to the traditional two-year MBA program, Cornell Johnson offers a one-year tech MBA that is based in New York City. This means that students in the two-year MBA program have the business school campus to themselves, which, combined with the college town feel of Ithaca, allows for a tight-knit, collaborative atmosphere. The Cornell name is well known around the world and Johnson alumni have no issues finding post-MBA employment: 97% of the Class of 2022 received job offers within three months of graduation. Cornell Johnson 2022 graduates accepted positions in such fields as financial services (39% of the Class of 2022), consulting (30%), and technology (15%), in addition to smaller percentages that went into consumer products (5%), manufacturing (3%), and law/legal services (1%).


mbaMission’s Cornell Johnson Graduate School of Management Insider’s Guide

Cornell Johnson Graduate School of Management Insider’s Guide

The Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management, founded in 1946, can today be considered among the top graduate business schools in the country. A relatively small class size and an idyllic location close to New York City allow students to experience both the intimacy of a close-knit college town and the vast possibilities of nearby cities. We are proud to offer you the first-ever Cornell Johnson Insider’s Guide, where you can learn more about the quickly growing MBA program, its various immersion opportunities, the Cornell Tech campus on Roosevelt Island, and how students form relationships through such activities as Sage Socials and the annual Follies show.


Cornell Johnson Graduate School of Management Interview Guide

The Cornell Johnson Graduate School of Management Interview Guide

Cornell Johnson interviews are conducted by second-year students and admissions committee members and are often described by our clients as friendly and relaxed. Nevertheless, you should expect a combination of behavioral, goals-focused, and probing interview questions; these are meant to help your interviewer get to know you and your accomplishments better. Further, you will need to have a strong grasp of how you believe the Cornell Johnson MBA program will help you reach your career goals. Finally, you will want to be prepared to discuss why you are a good fit for the school. Be sure to research the school, its curriculum and extracurricular offerings, Ithaca and the college town atmosphere that makes Johnson such a tight-knit business school experience, and what current students say about the school. With this research and our Interview Guide, you will be prepared for the Cornell Johnson interview.


Cornell Johnson MBA Essay Analysis, 2023–2024

With its straightforward goals statement and single required essay, the Johnson Graduate School of Management at Cornell University seems interested in getting right to the heart of the issues it considers most valuable in evaluating its applicants. The admissions committee wants to first know your professional aspirations and motivations for pursuing an MBA degree and then how you see yourself being a contributing member of the Johnson community. An optional essay is available, if needed, to address the usual topics of problematic candidacy issues or any outstanding qualifications that are not represented elsewhere in one’s application.

In our essay analysis, we provide in-depth guidance on each of Cornell Johnson’s 2023–2024 application essay questions:

  • Goals Statement: A statement of your goals will begin a conversation that will last throughout the admissions process and guide your steps during the MBA program and experience. To the best of your understanding today, please share your short and long term goals by completing the following sentences and answering the enclosed short answer question (350 words maximum)
  • Essay 1 – Impact Essay: This essay is designed to explore the intersection of engagement and community culture. Our students and alumni share a desire to positively impact the organizations and communities they serve. To help you explore your potential for impact, we encourage you to engage with our students, alumni, faculty, and professional staff before submitting your application. You may choose to connect with them via email or phone or in person during one of our on-campus or off-campus events. As you seek their input and insight, please be respectful of their time and prepare a few discussion points or questions in advance. At Cornell, our students and alumni share a desire to positively impact the organizations and communities they serve. Taking into consideration your background, how do you intend to make a meaningful impact on an elite MBA community? (350 words maximum)
  • Optional Essay (required for reapplicants): You may use this essay to call attention to items needing clarification and to add additional details to any aspects of your application that do not accurately reflect your potential for success at Johnson (350 words maximum). If you are reapplying for admission, please use this essay to indicate how you have strengthened your application since the last time you applied for admission. Please also review our Application Guide for additional information about reapplying. (350 words maximum)

Click here to read our analysis

Cornell Johnson Graduate School of Management MBA Class Profile (Class of 2025)

Enrollment 283
GMAT Median 710
GPA Median 3.35
Average Age 28
Average Years of Full-Time Work Experience 5.4
Women 43%
U.S. Minorities
(Black/African American, Native American, and Hispanic American)
International Students 42%
Countries Represented 39
U.S. Military 10%

Cornell Johnson Graduate School of Management Rankings

Cornell Johnson typically ranks among the top 15 or top 20 business schools. In the U.S. News and World Report 2023–2024 ranking, Johnson shared the 15th place with USC Marshall and was included in the top 15 in such specialty rankings as real estate (5th), management (8th), executive MBA (12th), and production/operations (14th). In the 2023 Financial Times MBA ranking, Johnson was fifth within the country and eighth in the world. Finally, both the Bloomberg Businessweek 2023–2024 and the Poets&Quants 2022–2023 national rankings placed Johnson in the 13th spot.

Cornell Johnson MBA Admissions Deadlines (2023-2024)

Round 1 Application Deadline
September 20, 2023

Round 1 Final Decision Notification
December 8, 2023

Round 2 Application Deadline
January 10, 2024

Round 2 Final Decision Notification
April 5, 2024

Round 3 Application Deadline
April 10, 2024

Round 3 Final Decision Notification
May 31, 2024

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