Executive MBA
Admissions Requirements

Is it time
for an Executive MBA?

The decision to go back to school as a working professional is complicated. These are just some of the questions you may be asking yourself: Is this the right time in my career for an Executive MBA? Do I have the kind of work experience that is a good fit for the cohort? Which program–traditional or global–is the best fit for my career goals? What is the workload like for someone with my academic background? How will this affect my family? What is the admissions committee looking for in candidates? What is involved in the interview process? What are the benefits of an Executive MBA? What is the value of an Executive MBA? How long does it take to earn an Executive MBA?

Am I ready?

Some questions you should be asking yourself before you apply:

  • Can I meet the EMBA program admissions requirements needed to submit an application?
  • Can I dedicate 15 to 20 study hours each week outside of class and my personal and professional responsibilities?
  • Can I complete community leadership obligations and remove myself temporarily from commitments to make time for the Executive MBA Program?
  • Am I willing to dedicate the time required for the Executive Edge Track (two Saturdays per month for 21 months) or the Global Immersion Track (two Saturdays per month in year 1 plus 4 9-day immersion experiences in year 2)?
  • Am I willing to study for and take the GMAT or the Executive Assessment (EA)?

Is my employer ready?

  • Can I arrange time away from the office? (9 business days for the Executive Edge Track or 24 days for the Global Immersion Track)
  • Is my employer receptive to my new ideas so that my new MBA skills and solutions have a chance of gaining implementation?
  • Will my employer consider offering financial sponsorship? (The majority of students in the program are partially self-funded).

Is my family ready?

  • Is my support system (spouse, partner, children) prepared for my individual and group study commitments inside and outside the classroom?
  • Is my family committed to participating in family events at Vanderbilt and connecting with my C-Team’s families?

how to apply

The program requirements for admission to the Executive MBA Program are the same for both the Executive Edge Track and the Global Immersion Track:

  • At least 5 years of strong employment history and demonstrated management expertise.
  • Significant, proven quantitative experiences and aptitude
  • Ability to demonstrate both teamwork and leadership experience.
  • A completed online application that includes:
    • Undergraduate transcripts (and graduate transcripts, if applicable
    • GMAT or Executive Assessment (EA) score
    • Career essay
    • Two professional recommendations
    • Résumé
    • Personal interview

Learn more about the application process.

We take business personally

We know that  your questions and concerns are as unique as you are. So our admissions staff is available to meet with you for a personal consultation. We’ll answer your questions and help you assess whether it is time for an EMBA and if you should apply. Schedule your in-person or phone personal consultation now.


Admissions Information

Q. What type/amount of work experience is required?

Five years (minimum) of managerial experience is required; this includes either managing people, large projects, budgets and/or processes. Talk to us if you have questions about whether your experience qualifies.

Q. Can I sit in on a class?

Absolutely, but please call us to schedule in advance. This will allow us to introduce you to a student host and the professor.

Q. Is an assessment exam required for admission?

Yes, we accept both GMAT and Executive Assessment (EA) scores. Your score will enable us (and you) to determine your relative academic ability within the applicant pool for performing in core MBA classes as well as to decide on your best pre-enrollment preparation. Either our complimentary online math/statistics course and/or complimentary Executive MBA Math Camp, held on Saturdays in July, may be required based on your GMAT score. We are a highly quantitative program; you will find that GMAT preparation enables you to move at the speed of our classroom.

Q. What are the admission requirements?

Applicants typically begin with a personal consultation and then start the online application which requires essays, transcripts for all college-level and graduate work, GMAT or EA score and two letters of recommendation, which can be requested electronically. A face-to-face interview is required for admission and can be completed concurrently with the online application.

Q. Once I have begun the Executive MBA program, can I switch to the Global Immersion track?

If any student determines during the first year of the program that the Global Track is more applicable to his/her career aspirations, it is possible to pivot to the Global Track. However, space on the Global Track is limited, and any student adjusting their track must communicate that desire to the EMBA staff to ensure availability.

Q. Will you waive the GMAT or EA test requirement?

Yes, it is possible! However, Vanderbilt’s MBA programs have historically been known to be comprised of deep and strong quantitative content. In order to qualify for the test waiver for the Executive MBA program, you must schedule a consultation with a staff member and discuss your qualifications, after which you may submit a test waiver request.

One of my favorite things about the Executive MBA Program is getting to know the students as they work through the decision-making process. It is such an interesting and diverse group of people, each with a strong commitment to furthering their education. I am here to help each student decide if the program will help them achieve their goals and then walk them through the admissions process.

Sarah FairbankDirector of Admissions, Vanderbilt Executive MBA Programs