Haas ranked second for Hispanics in recent publication

Brenna Alexander/File

Diversity on campus has long been an important part of the UC philosophy — an ethos that could be contributing to a recently released ranking that shows UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business to be a favorable environment for Hispanics.

Haas was ranked second-best in the nation for Hispanics in 2012 by the publication Hispanic Business, marking an improvement from the last time the school made it into the top 10 list in 2009, when it came in ninth. The school did not make the top 10 rankings, which are all that the publication lists, in 2010 or 2011.

“The ranking reflects the importance that all of us in the Haas community place on creating a welcoming and inclusive community,” Eric Abrams, director of diversity for the business school, said in an email. “Members of the admissions staff spend a lot of time and energy waving the Haas flag. We want to be sure that prospective students of all backgrounds know about the unique opportunities available at Haas.”

The rankings judged each school by a number of factors including the percentage of its graduate enrollment that is Hispanic, the number of MBAs earned by Hispanics and the percentage of Hispanic faculty present.

At Haas, 37 of 492 graduate students are Hispanic, four of 237 MBAs earned were presented to Hispanics and 2.6% of the faculty is Hispanic — an increase from 2009, when only 8 of 500 students enrolled in the business school were Hispanic, according to the report.

“The program feels very international and cosmopolitan — I’m not surprised to hear that students who are Latin American or Hispanic feel comfortable here,” said Ernesto Dal Bo, the Harold Furst chair in management philosophy and values at Haas.

The University of Texas at El Paso retained its first-place ranking from 2011 while third and fourth place went to the University of New Mexico and the University of Texas at Austin, respectively.

Abrams also attributed the rise of Haas’ ranking in part to the Consortium for Graduate Study in Management — an organization dedicated to helping “reduce the serious underrepresentation of African Americans, Hispanic Americans and Native Americans” in the enrollment of its member schools and in the ranks of management, according to its website.

“Diversity is a defining characteristic of California’s history, as well as its present and future trajectory,” said Rich Lyons, dean of the business school, in a statement on diversity on the school’s website. “We at Haas share the campus’s commitment to admitting and retaining a diverse student body, as well as to hiring and retaining a diverse faculty and staff.”

Freshman underrepresented minority enrollment on the campus undergraduate level increased for the second year in a row in 2012, jumping from last year’s 14.3 percent to about 16 percent this year.