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Harvard Business School Dean Apologizes for Past Treatment of Women

One step at a time.



Earlier this week, the Dean of Harvard Business School apologized on behalf of the institution for its past treatment of female students and teachers. Dean Nitin Nohria spoke to a crowd of more than 600 alumni and guests and said he apologized to women who felt "disrespected, left out, and unloved." 

Harvard Business School was founded in 1908 and started admitting women to its MBA program in 1963. In its first co-ed year, eight women were admitted into the program. Nohria said that this year, women comprised 41 percent of Harvard Business School's entering class. While Nohria said the rate had increased by 35 percent since 10 years ago, he admitted that there was still more work to be done. "The school owed you better, and I promise it will be better," he told the crowd.

The dean revealed his plans for increasing the amount of business case studies featuring a female protagonist. Currently, 80 percent of case studies used in business schools around the world come from Harvard, and only 9 percent of those cases feature female protagonists. Nohria vowed to increase that number to 20 percent over the next five years.


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