I briefly took note of the StateFans Nation post a couple of days ago trumpeting the fact that their business school made a Top Fifty list when UNC's Kenan-Flagler did not, but promptly succumbed to a serious bout of not caring, and moved on with my life.
It turns out the firm Fortune Magazine hired to do its reporting for them, QS Quacquarelli Symonds - who's business model seems to consist entirely of ranking schools for fun and profit - couldn't distinguish between UNC and N.C. State. And hilarity ensued.
The article reporting on the ensuing mess, which is still raging on after Fortune pulled the rankings, is full of stupid quotes, from panicked business school officials overresponding to the ass-covering non-statements from Fortune and QS. What takes the cake, however, is the man-on-the-street opinion:
"It's the kind of thing where if I'm in a summer internship or a job a few years from now ... and somebody says to me, 'How come UNC wasn't in the top 50?' " he said. "That shouldn't be on me."
I will absolutely guarantee you that a few years from now absolutely nobody is going to ask you about a Fortune.com list. Do you know why the hundreds of these damn lists exist? To sell magazines. And apparently, support high-caliber research firms like QS. Universities overreact to these sort of things because students and cash-donating alumni overreact to these things. Nobody who actually has the power to hire people gives a flying fuck. They've mentally compartmentalized business schools into excellent, good, and places they haven't heard of, and that's as far as it goes. Nobody cares about where you went to school once you've gotten a job in the real world, unless they're tal;king college sports. The soones everyone realizes this and stops obsessing over magazine filler like it was the Bowl Championship Series the healthier the world will be.
Oddly enough, I deal with people confusing UNC and N.C. State quite a lot. Being an engineer on the west coast, most folks just assume I went to State. It doesn't help that people only know two North Carolina towns, Raleigh-Durham (sic) and Charlotte, which leads to interesting things like Kyle Whelliston thinking UNC-Winthrop was a Tar Heel home game. You eventually get used to it. Of course, I've had a boss in RTP ask me who I studied under at State while I was wearing a UNC sweatshirt, so it could just be people are stupid. Who knows?