Celebrating 40 Years of the Georgetown MBA

Four decades ago, the 37 students who enrolled in Georgetown McDonough’s new Full-time MBA program became pioneers in creating one of today’s most respected programs in the world. 

The 19 women and 18 men of the first cohort were among 350 who applied to be part of that first class and 70 who were admitted via a personal phone call from Professor David Walker, who had been working with Dean Ronald Smith and Assistant Dean Bill Droms to launch the program. You can read more about the MBA Class of 1983 in Georgetown Business magazine’s coverage from fall 2013. 

Georgetown McDonough was not the first business school to launch an MBA, but it was the first to incorporate global business and ethics throughout the curriculum, ensuring a truly Georgetown experience from the very start. The program continues this tradition of innovation in its approach to preparing students to lead for the future, having been ranked the #1 program in the world by Bloomberg Businessweek for having the best-trained, most innovative, and most creative graduates

Throughout the 2021-2022 academic year, we invite you to celebrate this milestone with us. We will be in touch about special events in the future, and you can follow #McDonoughMBA40 on our social media channels. Watch our Instagram Reel for a peek at our celebratory fun!

Program Milestones

1981

First MBA class enrolls at Georgetown

1983

Harry Adamopoulos is the first student to receive a Georgetown MBA as the inaugural cohort graduates

1985

Joint MBA/JD begins

1987

Healy 105 reconfigured as the university’s first MBA case-style classroom


1988

Georgetown McDonough gains AACSB accreditation

1990

First Ultimate Four charity basketball tournament

1990

First national ranking, #4 “up and comer” by U.S. News & World Report

1992

MBA Volunteers student club forms


1993

Average starting salary is $50,000

1994

Joint MBA/MPP begins

1995

Joint MBA/MSFS begins

1995

MBA program launches a website and moves admissions online


1996

Joint MBA/MD begins

1999

MBAs move to the Car Barn

2000

First MBA Global Business Experience, students consulting for companies in London and Buenos Aires

2005

MBA Evening Program, now the Flex MBA, begins


2006

Joined Forte

2010

First McDonough Cup

2013

Average salary surpasses $100,000

2013

MBA program joins The Consortium for Graduate Studies in Management


2013

First Graduate McDonough Alumni Reunion held

2014

MBA Alumni Advisory Council established

2017

First Executive Challenge

2018

Ranks #1 in the world for having the best-trained graduates by Bloomberg


2019

#1 in the world for having the most innovative and creative graduates by Bloomberg

2020

 STEM-designated Management Science Major begins

2020

MBA Mentor Program begins