UC-Irvine’s Merage School of Business
Merage’s Executive MBA is a 12-course core curriculum structured so that students progress logically through the 21-month-long program.
The coursework gives you a good foundation in such key topics as strategic innovation, information technology, and analytic decision making.
Students start off with an introductory retreat held for five days in a business-class hotel in Orange County where there is classwork on organizational design, organizational culture and power, group processes, competitive analysis, corporate strategy, and business ethics. A second six-day residency is held outside the U.S. to explore global business. Students recently trekked to such locales as Russia/Czech Republic, Shanghai/Beijing, and Hong Kong/Guangzhou. Professors typically explore major issues faced by U.S. companies overseas, the investment climate in the featured country as well as banking and finance and supply chain management in emerging economies. Senior-level executives from U.S. based companies as well as foreign-based companies present and discuss the challenges they face.
A final capstone retreat on executive leadership concludes the EMBA experience. This five-day residential provides a 360-degree evaluation of each student, allowing each participant to reflect on what he or she has learned. It is typically held at a Southern California mountain retreat conference center.
The program draws an impressive group of students, including execs from Allergan, Disney, Edwards Lifesciences, First American Financial Corporation and Rockwell Collins. The average salary of a student in the latest incoming class was a relatively high $152,045, and nearly a third of the students already have advanced degrees.
Application Deadline: Rolling admissions
Latest Up-to-Date Executive MBA Rankings:
Rankings Analysis: The Merage School got a rank of 40 in Bloomberg BusinessWeek’s 2011 ranking of the world’s best Executive MBA programs. But it was the only one of the four major rankings that PoetsandQuants uses to form its composite list. As a result, the Merage program is unranked by P&Q because we required a school to be ranked by a minimum of two sources to be included in our 2012 ranking. Even so, winning a rank of 40 on the BW list was a real coup for UC-Irvine in 2011 and an improvement on its unranked “second-tier” showing in the BW survey in 2009, the last time the magazine ranked EMBA programs.
Graduates of the Class of 2011 had good things to say about the program when surveyed by BusinessWeek for its latest ranking. As one put it, “The EMBA program was a great experience for me. I strongly believe that the more you put into something, the more you will get out of it. There are great networking opportunities to be had if you take advantage of all the opportunities available to you, and extracurricular events (business plan competition, investment competition, speaker series etc.) greatly add to the value of the program.” Added another enthusiastic fan: “The day-to-day experience could not have been improved. Really, it was that good. The administration’s attention to detail was amazing. We had dedicated staff that supported us throughout the entire program.”
Application Fee: $150
2012 Tuition & Fees: $99,624
Average Months of Work Experience: 186
GMAT Required: No. Academic transcripts are reviewed.
Acceptance Rate: 78%
EMBA Enrollment: 138
Mean Age: 40
Classes Meet: Starting at 8:30 am on Friday and Saturday on alternate weekends, with three off-site residential sessions that require you to take time off work: These include a five-day opening residential; a six-day international residential midway through the program; and a final five-day capstone leadership retreat.
Length of Program: 21 months
Students work in these functions:
- Consulting: 6%
- Finance/Accounting 17%
- General Management : 31%
- Human Resources: 0%
- Marketing/Sales: 17%
- Management Information Systems : 9%
- Operations/Logistics: 14%
- Other: 6%
Students work in these industry Sectors:
- Consulting: 3%
- Consumer Products: 6%
- Financial Services: 11%
- Government: 11%
- Manufacturing: 11%
- Media/Entertainment: 6%
- Non-Profit: 0%
- Petroleum/Energy: 0%
- Pharmaceutical/Biotechnology/Health Care: 11%
- Real Estate: 0%
- Technology: 11%
- Other: 30%