Executive Education

7 of the Best EMBA Programs With Experiential Learning Opportunities

Business school EMBA

Experienced business professionals seeking an EMBA should focus on programs that offer experiential learning and an immersive experience. Experiential learning teaches through real-world applications of business concepts and theories. This structure allows program participants to implement new skills and knowledge immediately in their workplace. Many programs incorporate the careers of cohorts into the program curriculum, having participants bring real-world business scenarios to their classmates.

Employers often are willing to support an employee who is planning to pursue an EMBA, and an experiential learning structure can mean a quicker ROI for the organization and the individual. The best EMBA programs also incorporate business leaders as faculty, mentors, and advisers who can provide unique insight and opportunities for networking.

Many experiential executive education programs offer an international component that provides invaluable, hands-on experience in the increasingly global marketplace, broadening your perspective and increasing your value too. These 5 programs offer exceptional experiential learning opportunities in their EMBA programs.

Miami Global Executive MBA (Miami Herbert Business School)

The Miami Global Executive MBA provides business leaders with a unique opportunity to learn by doing while also receiving one-on-one mentorship from a business leader. The program offers a hybrid format combining convenient online education, with nine on-campus residencies where students gain insight from C-suite panels that work in coordination with faculty.

During each residency, students apply the theoretical concepts they’ve learned through role-playing, computer simulations, and interactive negotiations. The Integrated Projects portion of the program has each cohort bringing a business issue from their own business experience to their classmates.

Cohorts also are given access to business leaders through the Miami Business Mentoring program, which pairs cohorts with a business leader who mentors them, providing opportunities for personal and professional growth.

Michigan State University Broad College of Business Executive MBA

The Broad Executive MBA provides an immersive, experiential educational experience with an international perspective.

startupThe Broad Enterprise Leadership journey is the core of the program. Cohorts receive personalized, research-based leadership assessments that include recommendations for growth, as well as individualized roadmaps for applying the knowledge gained from the program in their organization. Program participants also get access to Broad Connect, a customized networking and mentoring tool. Courses focus on enterprise leadership, such as “Organization Analysis,” “Global Marketplace,” “Organizational Impact,” “Entrepreneurship,” and “Leadership Development.”

The Broad Executive MBA includes a weeklong global residency focusing on the opportunities and risks of conducting business outside the United States. Past Global Marketplace locations have included South Africa, Vietnam, and Czech Republic.

London Business School Executive MBA

The London Business School Executive MBA provides cohorts with unique opportunities to specialize their degree through electives while gaining a truly international business perspective. Core courses provide a solid foundation to develop and apply skills strategically in the business world. Electives such as corporate strategy, entrepreneurship summer school, and capital markets and financing, allow students to customize their experience to meet individual needs and goals.

At the heart of the program is a collaborative and experiential learning experience. Cohorts are assigned teams with five or six of their classmates, each with different backgrounds and strengths. As part of the team, students complete a variety of projects that allow them to apply what they are learning.

The program includes a week-long international assignment where students complete projects in a key economic destination such as the United States, Dubai, China, Argentina, South Africa, and the Russian Federation.

Santa Clara University Leavey School of Business Executive MBA

The Santa Clara Executive MBA provides an experiential learning experience through workshops, career development training, and one-on-one executive coaching. The program has a unique Silicon Valley focus that few other programs can offer.

The program includes workshops led by Silicon Valley executives as well as one-on-one sessions. Cohorts participate in boot camps, workshops, and simulations on innovation, executive decision making, and emerging technologies.

The program ends with a capstone project where cohorts get to immerse themselves in the startup experience. Program participants develop a business plan and learn to present to angel investors and venture capitalists.

University of Connecticut Executive MBA

The UConn EMBA strives to develop global managers and thought leaders through experiential learning. The integrated curriculum leverages local and global perspectives in a cohort-based, interactive program.

EMBA programThe UConn EMBA curriculum aligns with AACSB accreditation standards, as well as the needs of the business community. The curriculum balances theory with practical application and integration.

Participants will build leadership skills and develop an understanding of global concepts, and then apply that knowledge first-hand through the International Study Course. The eight to 10-day study abroad opportunity gives students a chance to complete projects in an immersive team setting. Past International Study Courses took place in Brazil, Chile, China, Costa Rica, Czech Republic, Hong Kong, South Africa, Singapore, and Turkey.

EMBA–Global Americas and Europe

This prestigious program brings together two educational powerhouses, Columbia University and London School of Business. The major experiential opportunity is a function of that partnership, as students study in two of the world’s business capitals: London and New York City.

Experiential learning is part of the core curriculum, including the option to do an independent research course. In addition, participants in this program can do up to two international business assignments. On these assignments, students meet with global business leaders as well as alumni networks in different parts of the world. There are also opportunities for 1:1 sessions and 360 feedback throughout the program.

Cornell Executive MBA Metro New York

The Johnson Executive MBA program at Cornell University in New York City is focused on empowering participants to become innovative leaders. It is ideal for combining with your career as classes take place every other weekend in New York City in addition to four one-week sessions at their Ithaca campus. For those seeking international experiences, there is a global study trek in the fourth term.

Cornell’s EMBA has a particular focus on promoting collaboration skills, so many of its experiential opportunities include working on group projects. Students take six electives through the course of the program, so there are many opportunities to explore your personal interests. The second term in particular is focused around a group project on innovation. The second term also includes a full management simulation course, where you and your team will be responsible for a manufacturing company competing with other teams from the program to grow your business.


If you’re interested in learning more about executive education programs from around the world, consider Ivy Exec’s 2020 EMBA rankings. Every year, members review over 100 solo and joint programs to evaluate the best graduate programs for prestige, career advancement, curriculum strength, global experience, and life balance. Every school profile includes in-depth information about cohort size and demographics, tuition costs, industry concentrations, and faculty. You can also find hundreds of anonymous student reviews and links to each program’s website, brochure, and contact details.  

About the Author

Ivy Exec is the premier resource for professionals seeking career advancement. Whether you are on the job, or looking for your next one - Ivy Exec has the tools you need.