The Executive MBA Advantage

Over the last 30 years, executive MBA programs have proliferated around the country. Today, there are more than 200—70 percent of which were launched since 1990.

EMBA programs are not inexpensive. Many of the top-ranked ones cost more than $150,000 (and most last just shy of two years). However, dozens of programs offer tuition under $50,000. In addition, many companies pay all or part of the student’s fee, often in exchange for a longer-term commitment to that company.

The outcomes indicate that the cost is worth it. A recent study by the nonprofit Executive MBA Council indicates that the salary and bonus package for the EMBA students surveyed rose by 14 percent from before they began the program to when they finished. More than half of the participants noted that they received new responsibilities at work, and 38 percent got a promotion.

“When participants gain skills and perspectives that make them better leaders and managers, the EMBA experience results in better outcomes,” says Michael Desiderio, executive director of the Executive MBA Council. “These outcomes include tangible ones, such as salary, and intangible ones, such as greater know-ledge, improved leadership abilities, and a broader network, which stay with graduates throughout their career.”

U.S. News & World Report’s 2014 rankings of top EMBA programs in the U.S.:

• University of Pennsylvania (Wharton), Philadelphia
• University of Chicago (Booth), Chicago
• Northwestern University (Kellogg), Evanston
• Duke University (Fuqua), Durham
• Columbia University, New York
For the full list, visit

U.S. News & World Report’s 2014 rankings of top online MBA programs in the U.S.:

• Indiana University (Kelley), Bloomington
• Arizona State University (Carey), Tempe
• University of Florida (Hough), Gainesville
• University of Texas-Dallas, Richardson
• University of West Georgia (Richards), Carrollton
For the full list, visit

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