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Penn State Smeal MBA Student Life

The Penn State Smeal MBA Program develops leaders who are knowledgeable in their fields, act with integrity, and have an ethic of teamwork. We work to create a diverse learning environment that leverages the resources of Penn State while offering a highly personalized student experience.

Collaborative Environment

Teamwork is a fundamental part of the Smeal MBA experience. During orientation in August, you will join a small team of other first-year MBA students and remain with that group before changing teams in the spring. As individual skills develop, you will learn to work together more effectively to complete a variety of group-based projects. Notable opportunities for collaboration include:

  • Executive Panel case competition: An opportunity to present your team’s business strategy to a panel of senior alumni and corporate partners.
  • Applied Professional Experience (APEX): A cross-functional business project conducted by student consultant teams for client firms.
  • Leadership Immersion Elective: These off-campus experiences (FDNY, Quantico) stretch students' critical-thinking and communication skills, teach them what it means to work as a team, and also how to lead in times of stress.
  • Student-run organizations: Offer additional opportunities to hone team and leadership skills, as well as ways to get involved outside the college in University-wide projects such as Penn State’s THON.

Integrity matters within the Penn State Smeal MBA Program. It stands as a fundamental part of our culture and permeates what we do as a leading business school both in and out of our classrooms. The college-wide academic integrity initiative at Smeal began in the college’s tight-knit MBA program as a partnership among students, faculty, and passionate alumni. The goal: integrate honesty, integrity, and accountability as foundational elements of the Smeal MBA experience.

Living and Learning in State College

State College ranks among the top college towns in the nation for being student friendly and accessible. Offering a vibrant nightlife, theater and concert performances in a variety of venues, spectator sport galore, and ample opportunities for outdoor activities across the region, State College is also centrally located within easy driving distance of major regional business hubs.

University Park, which is situated in State College, is the largest campus in the Penn State system and is home to a diverse population of more than 46,000 students. The Penn State Smeal MBA Program is based on the University Park campus in the Business Building, a state-of-the-art facility housing more than 6,000 students at the undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral levels.