It is the world’s most prestigious business school!
According to Black Enterprise, the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania recognized 98-year-old Hettie Simmons Love, the school’s first Black MBA graduate.
Hettie Simmons Love grew up in Jacksonville, Florida, where she attended the exclusive Boylan-Haven Boarding Institution, a prestigious private school for African Americans. She moved on to Fisk University, one of the country’s best historically Black universities, when she was inducted into the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated.
Simmons went to the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, the world’s leading business school, after graduating from undergrad.
Simmons maintained focus on her study despite being the only Black woman in her classes, graduating in 1947 and marrying her husband George Love. They created a family and traveled the world together while raising two children.
Simmons Love would not learn that she had created history until nearly seven decades later, in 2016. Simmons discovered she was the first African American, man or woman, to graduate from the Wharton School while attending an AKA event. “I would not be here if it weren’t for someone like you who paved the way,” Erika H. James, the School’s first female dean, told Simmons during her most recent campus visit.
James presented Love with a special plaque and thanked the National Youth Foundation (NYF), which is made up of students from Pennsylvania, for honoring her with a children’s book about her life.
“Hettie Simmons Love: Penn Pioneer,” an illustrated picture book, chronicles Simmons Love’s astounding achievements. Simmons Love’s story will be immortalized in history, thanks to the biography that will be included in children’s books.