The first business school in the world was the ESC in Paris, established on December 1, 1819. In that year, the ESC had been founded by economists and businessmen, although it was not immediately approved by the country as a degree program. Today, under the name of ESCP Europe, it is one of the leading business schools in Europe, with 200 undergraduate students and 4,000 graduate students.
While business schools are often grouped into a single category, they are actually classified into three large groups: undergraduate education, graduate education, and non-degree education. In terms of areas covered, there is a division between the type that is engaged in generalist training, which covers the entire business administration field, and the type that is focused on professional training, which specializes in finance. Thus, it is wrong to assume that a business school is the same as an MBA education. In some extreme cases, the business school is offered by a profit-seeking company, which refutes even the basic assumption that a business school is a part of a university.
- 1819 - ESC Paris
- 1846 - Glasgow Athenaeum Commercial College
- 1881 - Wharton School of Finance
- 1898 - California and Chicago
- 1900 - Tuck School of Business (Dartmouth) 1st Graduate School
- 1902 – School of Commerce at University of Birmingham
- 1908 – Harvard Business School (first MBA?)
- 1943 - First Executive MBA (EMBA) program
Although management education at the graduate school level was started by Wharton (1881), that was not an MBA in which the educational content focused on finance. Instead, the first comprehensive management education at the graduate school level was Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College. However, since the degree from Tuck was a Master of Science in Commerce, it was not, strictly speaking, a Master of Commerce. Although that program is almost equivalent to an MBA education, they did not award an MBA degree.
As for the use of “MBA (Master of Business Administration)” as the name of a degree, the consensus at international certification conferences is that it was likely to have been coined by Harvard Business School in 1908.
Regardless of whether a program grants an MBA in a strict sense, requests were made to establish a standard to determine if a specific type of education corresponded to an MBA education, which led to the birth of the AACSB, an international accreditation organization, in 1916. Have you ever wondered what determines if an MBA education is of a high quality?