New Recognition for SEMBA: Making An Impact

This post was written by Aditi Datta, SEMBA ’17

“The University of Vermont’s Sustainable Entrepreneurship MBA (SEMBA) program in the Grossman School of Business continues to bolster its growing reputation as one of the nation’s most innovative business programs by climbing to the No. 2 spot on the Princeton Review’s ‘Best Green MBA’ list…”


In just the month of October, SEMBA claimed a total of three major awards, joining the ranks of Yale School of Management and the University of Denver’s Daniels College of Business. Of course, awards are a staple of academia, providing an objective evaluation for prospective students comparing programs but do awards actually serve a larger purpose?

For a groundbreaking program like SEMBA, awards are not only a tangible recognition of the efforts that go into making the student experience exceptional but also an acknowledgement of the tremendous impact SEMBA is having in the worlds of sustainability and entrepreneurship.

The most recently announced award, The Princeton Review’s “Best Green MBA,” is based on students’ assessments of how well their school is preparing them in environmental/sustainability and social responsibility issues and for a career in a “green” job market. This particular ranking is a true testament to the overall quality of the program because it is the students vouching for the excellence of course material and commitment of everyone involved.

Earlier in October, SEMBA was ranked as the 10th best MBA program in the world by Corporate Knights, a Toronto-based media and research company focused on clean capitalism including social, economic and ecological factors. Corporate Knights evaluates graduate business programs on their integration of sustainability into the education of future business leaders as well as how well programs prepare graduates to solve business programs that intersect with larger social problems.

SEMBA also won its first award for Excellence in Specialty Entrepreneurship Education at the Global Consortium of Entrepreneurship Centers Conference on October 1. Our program was recognized for its ability to create “change agents rather than implementers by focusing on four primary domains for placing graduates: intrapreneurs, consultants, entrepreneurs and investors.”

However, for Dean Sanjay Sharma and SEMBA co-chairs David Jones and Stuart Hart, awards are not the goal – they are simply the by-product of their steadfast dedication to the success of their students and to making real change in the world.

These awards are more than just proof of ROI for investors; they recognize the entirely new category SEMBA has created, harmonizing sustainability and entrepreneurship. The awards acknowledge the power of the SEMBA change agents and help bring sustainable business opportunities into the conversation.

After just three years, SEMBA is certainly racking up the awards but more importantly – we’re making a noticeable impact.

Visit the University of Vermont website to read the full Press Release on SEMBA’s recent awards.