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Frequently Asked Questions
How do I apply?
Can I apply to more than one of your MBA programs at once?
Can I apply to Columbia if I already have an MBA?
Do I have to take the GMAT or GRE before I apply?
How do I schedule an interview?
After submitting my application, when will I receive a decision?
Do I need to be sponsored?
Can I sponsor myself?
Can I apply without being gainfully employed?
How much does the EMBA Program cost?
Are there scholarships for the program?
Is financial aid available?
How much will I be able to customize my curriculum through electives?
What career management services are available?
After I'm admitted, can I defer to a future term?
What does a typical EMBA calendar look like for the length of the program?
The application processes for all all of our EMBA options are handled online. Feel free to call Admissions at 212-854-1961 or send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any further questions.
Columbia does not accept simultaneous applications to its MBA programs. You should apply to the program that most closely reflects your professional, personal, and geographic interests and experience. Admissions officers will be happy to offer guidance with your choice. If you wish to explore the possibility of admission to a different program during the application process, it is possible to request that the Admissions Committee discuss your suitability for a different program. We reserve the right to withdraw offers of admission to any candidate who does not disclose a prior application to any other Columbia MBA program.
If you already have an MBA or similar degree in management studies, you are eligible to apply to the Columbia Executive MBA Program. We would not encourage you to do so, however, without a compelling reason. You may wish to review our course offerings and talk to an admissions officer to see how much of the program would be repetitious. Then, if you decide to apply, you should make a compelling case in your application to explain why you want to have another MBA education.
The interview is a chance for us to get to know you beyond your written application and for you to ask questions. Once you submit your application, an admissions officer may contact you to schedule a time to meet.
Our goal is either to invite for an interview or deny admission within six weeks of a completed application being received. Our goal for interviewed applicants is to render a final decision within two weeks of the interview report being completed.
Sponsorship is viewed in two ways: time away from work to attend class and financial support. At a minimum, applicants for the Friday/Saturday option or EMBA-Americas must submit written authorization from their employer indicating permission to attend class on workdays and to complete the program. Applicants for the Saturday-only option do not require employer sponsorship of any kind.
Many students from both programs also obtain corporate financial sponsorship, which ranges from partial to full support, but third-party financial sponsorship is not required.
Yes. If you are an independent professional or consultant, or the head of your own firm, you can write your own sponsorship letter. Applicants for the Friday/Saturday option or EMBA-Americas who are employed by an organization that can endorse their candidacy, but not provide financial support, may meet the financial requirements themselves. In this case, the organization must still provide a letter of endorsement stating that the applicant will be guaranteed time away from work to attend all classes and required program activities. Saturday-only students do not require sponsorship of time off or financial sponsorship.
Columbia Executive MBA students must be fully employed from the time of application through completion of the program.
There are no scholarships or grants offered directly through Columbia University for the Executive MBA Program. There are, however, free online scholarship search engines that may be helpful in identifying external sources of scholarships.
Financial aid is available through federal and private educational loans. Learn more about student loan options for Executive MBA students.
EMBA students take a total of 11 electives, primarily in their second year. Elective offerings are scheduled with the academic divisions. Typically, you are offered a selection of 30 electives over three terms. If your schedule and course capacity permits, you may also take electives from the Full-Time MBA Program or (a maximum of two courses) from Columbia’s other professional schools (Law, International and Public Affairs, Journalism, Medicine, Public Health, etc.). Electives are undertaken after you have completed all core courses. More detailed information about the elective offerings of EMBA-Global Americas and Europe and EMBA-Global Asia can be found on their respective sites.
The Career Management Center is designed to provide ongoing professional career development services specifically to EMBA students. Included in this programming are career-related workshops, virtual programs, one-on-one advising, an extensive website, and various networking opportunities and events. These resources are dedicated to enhancing professional development for both active job seekers and students who intend to continue working with their sponsoring employers. Learn more about career management for EMBA students.
As a matter of policy, Columbia Business School does not defer admitted students to future terms.
Those reapplying more than one year after their previous application should adhere to all the requirements of new applicants. Those reapplying for the application cycle immediately following their initial application need only do the following:
- Submit a new application fee (US$250).
- Update the employment history, activities, educational history, and general information I, II, and III sections of the online application.
- Submit a new sponsorship letter if previous letter is more than six months old.
- Submit transcripts of any additional courses taken since previous application.
- Submit one new essay: How have you enhanced your candidacy since your previous application? Please detail your progress since you last applied, reiterate your post-MBA and long-term professional goals, and address why Columbia Business School is a good fit for you. (Maximum of 750 words.) This essay should be inserted into the designated text box.
- Submit one new recommendation letter, preferably from your current employer, another colleague in a supervisory role, or a client.
Please note that your new account will not contain any of the information you submitted previously, but you only need to submit the items on the above list to reapply. Reapplicants with questions should contact the Admissions Office at email@example.com or 212-854-1961.
Upcoming Information Sessions
Tuesday, August 5 - Warren Hall, Room 209
Special EMBA-Americas Information Session
Saturday, August 9 - Uris Hall, Room 140
EMBA Portfolio Information Session
For a full list of upcoming EMBA-Global information sessions, both for EMBA-Global Americas and Europe and EMBA-Global Asia, please visit the EMBA-Global website.
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