How the University of Rochester is Defining the Future of Business Education


Closely affiliated with Simon Business School, the Barry Florescue Undergraduate Business Program at the University of Rochester is one of the two largest majors on campus and growing. This article offers insight into its popularity, and where it is headed next. 

How the University of Rochester is Defining the Future of Business Education

The best way to influence the future is to create it. In partnership with the College of Arts & Sciences, the University of Rochester has developed an innovative approach to undergraduate business education that embraces the diversity of our community and emphasizes excellence in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math). With broad flexibility to build their own unique program of study, our students are empowered to become the leaders of tomorrow.  

Here’s what innovative business education looks like in practice. 

  1. We are pioneering global, diverse, and inclusive business education for everyone. Our students come to us from dozens of countries across the globe and every state in the US, and we’re notably woman-centered. But diversity on our campus is about more than demographics. It’s about intentionally creating spaces, both in and out of the classroom, for students to collaborate with peers of varying perspectives and experiences in preparation for an increasingly diverse global workplace.  

  2. Our students share in cutting-edge research. Right here on our campus, world-changing research is shedding light on vital issues affecting people worldwide. Here at Simon, faculty members like Giulio Trigilia, Jerry Warner, Sudarshin Jayaraman, Gerry Wedig, Michael Gofman, and Dean Sevin Yeltekin are shaping the future of business with their research – and the minds who will lead it. What’s more, 77% of our undergraduates participate in their own student research. Within the larger UR community, partners like the College of Arts & Sciences are solving an even broader range of problems, from pioneering the future of optics to providing clean drinking water to underserved regions.  

  3. Our faculty are committed to excellence. Simon Finance Professor Michael Gofman has gained national recognition for his research on AI Brain Drain – the problem of industry titans and startups luring AI professors away from their university posts. His work has been featured in The NY Times, The Register, Inside Higher Ed, and many more. Watch the video here. He was recently featured in Dean Yeltekin’s Dean’s Corner blog where he shared updates on his research.  

  4. We are socially and environmentally responsible. Before corporate social responsibility became mainstream, business majors at the University of Rochester were participating in dialogue around social and environmental responsibility and their role in business as an integrated part of our curriculum. But our students do more than talk. They also have opportunities to gain hands-on experience through on-campus student organizations or participating in internships, which they secure with the help of our Career Management Center. Students across campus also take part in community engagement and awareness through organizations such as Circle K International, Community Service Network, & Active Minds, with business majors gaining a unique perspective on the impact of business on local communities.

  5. We take a holistic approach to business education. The most effective problem-solvers have a high level of clarity not just about business, but about themselves. They’re well-rounded and able to think outside the box. That is why we’ve taken a non-linear approach to business education that merges our expertise in liberal arts with the analytical excellence for which we are known. We call it the Rochester Curriculum, and it allows our undergraduate students in Arts, Sciences & Engineering to build their own program of study without the restrictions of general education requirements and a traditional “core” curriculum. Many students choose double majors blending both arts and sciences educations, resulting in well-rounded, comprehensive, critical thinkers prepared to succeed in any environment.

  6. The Barry Florescue Undergraduate Business Program is STEM-designated. Simon Business School was the first to offer a STEM-designated MBA regardless of specialization. That’s because the University of Rochester, with its analytical excellence, identified the value of integrating STEM into its academic programs. Our undergraduate business programs are all STEM-designated, which not only gives our graduates a competitive edge and critical problem-solving skills; it also gives international students in the US on F-1 visas the eligibility to work for three years in the U.S. and gain valuable work experience. This is just one more way we support and welcome talent, regardless of geographic origin. 

Our hard work is paying off. Graduating student salaries soared in 2020 to an average in excess of $70,000, up almost 17 percent from 2019. 89 percent of our business graduates have gone on to work with firms such as Ernst & Young, J.P. Morgan and Chase, Citi, Credit Suisse, Amazon, Nielsen, or to succeed in graduate school.  

Learn more about the University of Rochester’s undergraduate business program or take a minute to connect with us today. You can also take a closer look by viewing our student profiles.