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Cracking the Top Five

Congratulations are in order to Duke's Fuqua School of Business. Business Week last evening issued its biennial ranking of business schools, and Fuqua got the fifth spot. That's a tremendous achievement for such a young school with a relatively tiny endowment, and a great deal of the credit has to go to Dean Rex Adams, who is stepping down next June. During Dean Adams' five years, Fuqua went from a "Second Ten" school to the Top Five, thanks to its pioneering and innovative work in such areas as Web-based teaching and global outreach. Especially impressive is Fuqua's diversity, with 41% women, 20% minority, and 30% international students. And proving that diversity doesn't sacrifice quality in any respect, the average GMAT score at Fuqua is now 690 and only 19% of applicants are accepted.

Not too long ago, it was felt that schools like Stanford, Wharton, Harvard, Northwestern, Columbia, and Chicago were entrenched in the Top Six. Perhaps because they bought into that thinking, three of them no longer are. Fuqua's challenge now is to sustain that excellence, continue the momentum, nurtue its unique Team Fuqua culture, and always remember that its mission is more than just pleasing Business Week.