Simon Hall exterior, Olin Business School

​Mission, Values, and History

We live our mission everyday. Since our founding in 1917, Olin Business School has been guided by these words: Create knowledge. Inspire individuals. Transform business.

Core Values

  • Excellence: We have an unwavering commitment to excellence in all that we do, continually striving to provide the highest level of educational experience, learning opportunities and research.
  • Leadership: Olin cultivates a leadership mind-set, infusing students with both the value of acting responsibly and the desire to make an impact in whatever path they pursue.
  • Integrity: Our Midwestern heritage is the cornerstone of our character – we are honest, hard working, authentic, loyal and supportive.
  • Collaboration: Our culture fosters a collaborative community that creates innovative ideas, unique opportunities, and strong personal bonds.
  • Diversity: We embrace the diversity of individuals, cultures, ideas, and opinions for the richness it brings to our school.


Washington University in St. Louis, founded in 1853, has maintained a business school since 1917 and awarded its first undergraduate business degree in 1919. In 1988, the business school was named in honor of John M. Olin, chairman of Olin Corporation and a major benefactor of Washington University, in recognition of a gift from the John M. Olin Foundation.

The school added an MBA program in 1950, a doctoral program in 1958, and an executive MBA program in 1983. In 2002 Olin partnered with Fudan University to offer a Shanghai-based Executive MBA degree. In recent years, the business school has developed degree programs with partner universities in India, South Korea, Singapore, Israel, Germany, and Spain.

Mark Taylor became dean of Olin Business School on Dec. 1, 2016, succeeding Mahendra R. Gupta, who served as dean from 2005 to 2016.