Probability of Finding a Suitable Partner at Bocconi as an Undergraduate Student

Why use statistics and probabilities to calculate the likelihood of a meteor shower on Planet A3D45 in a Galaxy 300,000 light years away, when we could be using scientific methodologies to determine things that matter most to us, namely: relationships.

A Bocconi student did just that, and thanks to a stream of calculations, found out exactly the probability of you finding your next suitable partner on campus. The answer might not please you!

Data used and procedure:

– Number of undergraduate students: 

Last year Bocconi admitted 2,600 undergraduate students. The yield rate at this school is around 99.4%, so 2,600 * 0.994 = 2,584 students enrolled in Bocconi. Most of the Bachelors are three-year courses so, say, they admitted the same number of students for the last 3 years and the yield rate didn’t change: 2,584 * 3 = 7,754. But the 45 World Bachelor in Business (WBB) students spend one year at the University of Southern California (USC) and another year at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) before coming to Bocconi, so 7,754 – (45 * 2) = 7,664. The undergraduate population at Bocconi is ca. 7,664 students.

– Gender:

Even though recent stats show that business schools usually don’t have a perfectly balanced gender ratio, data shows that Bocconi is doing very well in this aspect and welcomes 48.9% male students and 51.1% female students.

– Sexual orientation:

I have already made some approximations and making other estimations about the LGBT community at Bocconi would only drive us further from the real results so I’ll abstain and calculate the probability for straight students only. No need to say that bisexual students’ chances of finding their significant other on campus are almost twice as high.

Since the gender ratio is slightly advantageous for male students, we’ll have a lower probability for female students: 48.9%, while male students will enjoy a 51.1%.

– Attractiveness:

Without going too much into details, unfortunately in the capital of fashion most people won’t consider pursuing a relationship with someone whose personality and looks just barely suffice. Let’s assume that guys have behavioural and physical standards just as high as girls, and that someone who lives in Milan would be enthusiastic about starting a lifelong relationship with people falling at least two standard deviations above the average: 2.3% of the population. On the other hand, estimating (from what I’ve seen) that our campus welcomes around 5% more of those people than the regular population, the percentage of undergraduate Bocconi students falling at least two standard deviations above the average would be 7.3%. Therefore, the number of male students that girls would be interested in dating would be 274, and the number of female students that guys would like to date would be 286.

– Intelligence:

One of the greatest mysteries of our time is the definition of intelligence. This aspect will be utterly subjective. A study I’ve read indicated that one standard deviation above the average was reasonable, which leaves us with 15.87% of the population. I’d assume that quite a lot of undergraduate Bocconi students fall in that range. Therefore, once again we won’t use this data but it will help us estimate the number of Bocconi students who are intellectually suitable for you. So the assumption I’ll make here is, let’s be humble, 7 undergraduate students out of 10 fall in that range: 70%.

Now, 200 girls are left for the guys, 191 guys are left for the girls.

– Single:

At this age, probably 75% are single? 75% it is. 150 girls, 144 guys.

– Other qualities we seek in our partners + will they like me back?

One last conservative assumption: in order to balance, we’ll suppose that a person will only accept to date us if we fall one standard deviation above their idea of average: 15.87% of our small pool of applicants is left.


For any straight undergraduate female student at Bocconi, there are about 23 serious male pretenders and a probability of 0.297%; while for any straight undergraduate male student at Bocconi, there are 24 perfectly suitable girls and a probability of 0.31%, if they are straight as well.

Fun fact:

When it comes to love, Bocconi students might become at least four times more selective than Goldman Sachs and at least twice more selective than Google.

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