Path of Excellence 

  “Success is measured by the service you render and the character of citizen you make rather than by the amount of money you amass."

— Jesse H. Jones, businessman, civic leader, U.S. Secretary of Commerce, and Chairman of the Reconstruction Finance Corporation (RFC)

In 1974, the Houston Endowment provided the funding to establish a business school at Rice University. The intent was to honor the memory, vision and lifelong impact on the community of Jesse H. Jones, one of Houston’s most important business and civic leaders and the founder of the Houston Endowment. Today the Jones Graduate School of Business is a top-tier business school at the apex of commerce in the fourth largest city in the United States. 


In the last fifteen years, an increasing focus has been placed on intellectual contributions, teaching quality, student quality, and value to alumni and employers.

Central to the vision of Jesse Jones and our own mission, we are developing future global business leaders with an intensity of ethical, transformative knowledge that impacts their own lives, their communities and the world. This vision is viewed through the lens of real value to our stakeholders and stakeholder assessment of our value creation.

Value to Stakeholders  


Knowledge Creation

  • Top 15 Faculty Research Rank in US, Executive MBA, Financial Times (2013)
  • Top 30 Intellectual Capital, Full-Time MBA (U.S.) Financial Times (2014)
  • Over 20 editorial positions in top research journals, such as Academy of Management Journal, Journal of Applied Psychology, Journal of Finance, Review of Financial Studies and Business and Society

Value-Added Business Education 

  • No. 2 Salary Percentage increase, Executive MBA (U.S.), 3 years post-graduation, Financial Times (2013)
  • No. 6 Job Placement (refers to job offers 3 months out) Full-Time MBA, Businessweek (2012)
  • No. 6 in Percentage Earning Raises MBA for Professionals, Businessweek (2013)
  • No. 10 Salary Percentage Increase, Full Time MBA, (U.S.), Financial Times (2015)
  • No. 12 Post MBAP Outcomes, Businessweek (2013)

Stakeholder Assessment


Effectiveness of Learning Process

  • No. 1 Entrepreneurship (alumni ranking), EMBA, Financial Times (2013)
  • “A” in Teaching Quality, MBA for Professionals, Businessweek (2013)
  • No. 3 Best Administered, Princeton Review (2014)
  • No. 3 Best in Finance (alumni ranking), Full-Time MBA, Financial Times (2014)
  • No. 7 Best in Entrepreneurship (alumni ranking), Full-Time MBA, Financial Times (2014)
  • No. 8 Best Professors, Princeton Review (2014)

Student Quality and Demand 

  • “A+” Caliber of classmates, MBA for Professionals, Businessweek (2013)
  • No. 13  Full-Time MBA Selectivity, Businessweek (2012)
  • 49% of the incoming class of Rice MBA for Executives (class of 2015) have already earned advanced degrees

Philanthropic Support 

  • Completion of a $65 million Centennial capital campaign.

Programmatic Excellence 

The hallmark of a top-tier business school rests on its ability to execute consistent programmatic excellence throughout all programs. The Jones School offers three MBA programs, an undergraduate minor,  Ph.D. program as well as graduate certificate and custom programs through Rice Executive Education.

  • Rice MBA programs: Full-time MBA, MBA for Executives, and MBA for Professionals as well as joint MBAs in medicine with Baylor College of Medicine (MBA/MD), engineering (MBA/ME), and professional science in the fields of environmental analysis and decision making, subsurface geoscience, and nanoscale physics (MBA/MS).
  • The Undergraduate Business Minor develops critical business skills valued by both Rice undergraduates and recruiters. Courses are rated among the best on campus with nearly a third of all Rice undergraduates attending a class in McNair Hall.
  • The Rice PhD in Business launched in 2009 and has achieved exceptional admissions selectivity with less than four percent of applicants gaining admission. As of fall 2013, there are 32 doctoral students poised to excel as the next generation of marketing, finance, accounting and strategic management researchers.
  • Rice Executive Education delivers open enrollment, leadership development and collaborates in creating custom programs with top faculty for leading companies.
  • Jones School staff serve on national boards including GMAC, EMBA Council, Global Consortium of Entrepreneurship Centers, and AACSB International. A full list of service may be found here.

Value to the Community

As part of Rice University’s Vision for the Second Century, the Jones School recognizes the call to fully engage with the city of Houston, fostering relationships and raising the profile of the school, our students, faculty and alumni. Just a few examples of how the Jones School provides value to our community include:

Academic Impact
Faculty research is critical for generating new knowledge and for keeping Jones School faculty at the forefront of their fields.  The pursuit of knowledge informs their teaching and creates a rich, dynamic learning environment for students. The Jones School consciously invests in developing its faculty while also aggressively recruiting new faculty and supporting a world-class research culture.

Notable Accolades for Jones School faculty include:

The 2013 Financial Times global rankings named the Jones School No. 4 in accountancy (based on alumni rating).  The school’s accounting faculty includes Thomas Hemmer, one of the most prolific analytical accounting scholars in the world (based on the number of publications in top accounting journals), who is often invited to other top universities to teach their doctoral students, and Stephen Zeff, a past president of the American Accounting Association and a member of the Accounting Hall of Fame. Shiva Sivaramakrishnan, the Henry Gardiner Symonds Professor of Accounting, was recently awarded the 2012 Impact on Management Accounting Practice Award for his research on product costs as decision aids.

The 2013 Financial Times global rankings named the Jones School No. 5 in finance (based on alumni rating).  As a group, the school’s finance faculty serve two editorships and twelve associate editorship of top scholarly journals, including Journal of Finance, Review of Financial Studies and Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis.  The group includes Kerry Back, a former editor of the Review of Financial Studies, who has written a leading Ph.D. textbook on the theory of asset price and portfolio choice. Alex Butler was recently appointed to the Society for Financial Studies (SFS) Council, the board of directors for that society.

The entrepreneurship faculty consists of a world-class group of educators and practitioners such as Ed Williams who has been recognized by Businessweek as one of the top entrepreneurship professors in the U.S.

The marketing faculty is one of the few in the world to include multiple winners of the prestigious William F. O’Dell Award given by the Journal of Marketing ResearchVikas Mittal won the award in 2006 and has been recognized as one of the top five most prolific marketing scholars worldwide by the Journal of MarketingAjay Kalra won the award in 1998 and was recently recognized for authoring one of the 20 most influential articles writing in Marketing during the past 25 years. Wagner Kamakura was recently recognized by the International Journal of Research in Marketing for having the best paper for the Emerging Markets Special Issue. Mittal, Kalra and Kamakura were all cited as publishing the most impactful research in marketing science according to the Journal of Market Research in 2013.

The organizational behavior faculty is anchored by Jennifer George and Jing Zhou, who are both Fellows in the American Psychological Association, American Psychological Society, and Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology.  Jennifer is also a Fellow in the Academy of Management, and Jing is an Associate Editor of the Journal of Applied Psychology. Scott Sonenshein was recently appointed as an associate editor for the Academy of Management Journal.

Faculty in the strategy and environment group are truly world class in their influence through research and leadership in organizations and top journals. Bob Hoskisson is ranked 23rd in an interdisciplinary ranking of the research impact of 2140 corporate governance researchers by the Academy of Management Learning and Education (2012) and 25th in Economics and Business by Times Higher Education. He also serves as the president of the strategic management society (SMS). Duane Windsor is editor of Business and Society and Anthea Zhang is the 2010 Emerging Scholar Award recipient (Strategic Management Society) and associate editor of the Academy of Management Journal and consulting editor of Management and Organizational Review

Areas of Emphasis

Along with being consistently recognized for excellence in  core business disciplines, particular strength exists in entrepreneurship, energy and health care with a variety of degree and non-degree, industry-specific programming in degree concentrations, courses, conferences, competitions and executive education.


  • The Jones School has been ranked #4 for graduate entrepreneurship by Princeton Review/Entrepreneur magazine for 2014.
  • Rice MBA for Executive was ranked No. 1 globally in entrepreneurship in 2013 by Financial Times as ranked by 2010 graduates. 
  • The Rice Alliance for Technology and Entrepreneurship (Rice Alliance) is Rice University’s internationally-recognized initiative devoted to the support of technology commercialization, entrepreneurship education, and the launch of technology companies. More than 128 companies have been successfully launched after competing at Rice, raising more than $460 million in early-stage funding.
  • Rice Alliance’s recent recognition: 2011 NASDAQ OMX Center of Entrepreneurial Excellence Award, GCEC; 2009-2011. Top Ten Best U.S. Graduate Entrepreneurship Program (2008-2012), Princeton Review and Entrepreneur magazine; 2011 No. 14 Best U.S. Graduate Entrepreneurship Program, US News & World Report;  2011 National Model MBA Entrepreneurship Program, USASBE
  • Rice Business Plan Competition is the richest and largest graduate-level business plan competition in the world, awarding over $1.5 million in cash and prize awards.
  • The Jones School has 15 professors, adjunct professors and lecturers specializing in entrepreneurship creating a blend of academic and private-sector experience
  • 22 percent of our alumni have started one or more companies
  • Jones Graduate School Entrepreneurship Organization (JGSEO) offers networking events and round tables to increase expertise and mentorship access for local entrepreneurs, alumni and current students.
  • A social entrepreneurship course fosters technology commercialization in developing countries, such as Rwanda and Liberia, using a commerce model to replace aid-based support.
  • Rice Education Entrepreneurship Program (REEP) develops leaders for Houston area K-12 schools through emphasis on business fundamentals. The program won the 2014 MBA Roundtable Innovator Award.


  • Each fall, the student-run Rice Energy Finance Summit (REFS) brings key players in the energy and finance industries to discuss trends and the future of the energy industry. Now in its fifth year, last year’s event was completely sold out.
  • An international energy simulation is offered to students through Intensive Learning Experience.
  • Rice Alliance hosts an Energy and Clean Technology Venture Forum annually.

Health Care

  • Health Care Speaker Series brings current industry voices and vision to the Jones School.
  • Health care specialization track is an option for academic focus for fully employed students.
  • The biotechnology and health care club offers students the keys to finding roles in the life science and health care fields.
  • Executive education offers a certificate in medical and health care management.
  • Joint degrees through Baylor Medical Center – MD/MBA


With the ongoing upward trajectory of the Jones School, our impact on the knowledge creation, development of global thought leaders and business practice gains momentum.  Our strategic objectives for the future anticipate this sustainable trend — from increasing enrollment of world-class students and bolstering the ranks of leading faculty researchers to cultivating our Ph.D. graduates to migrate this commitment to excellence to other top-tier business schools. Through collaboration with our stakeholders and community partners, the over-arching goal of this institution will result in a virtuous cycle of continued improvement in the core metrics that ensure the success of our ongoing mission.

We invite you to engage with the Jones Graduate School of Business and Rice University.

Download the "Path of Excellence" PDF 

Download the "Faculty Experts Guide" PDF