Application Process, Admission Requirements for Wharton’s MBA Program for Executives

We work closely with candidates during the Wharton Executive MBA application process to ensure they are well-prepared for an MBA and fit well within this collaborative and rigorous academic environment.

The application for the class entering in 2025 will open in July 2024. You can review the 2024-2025 EMBA Application Deadlines and Timeline here.

Application Checklist

We created this EMBA admission guide to help you while applying, but the most detailed instructions are included in the application itself. You must complete and submit the online application to be considered for the MBA Program for Executives, and a complete application includes the following components:

  1. Start Online Application
  2. Submit Sponsorship Form
  3. Submit Letter of Recommendation
  4. Upload Your Resume
  5. Answer Two Essay Questions
  6. Submit Standardized Test Scores
  7. TOEFL/PTE
  8. Upload Unofficial Transcripts
  9. Pay Application Fee
  10. Submit the Online Application

Starting and Submitting Your Online Application

You may begin your online application at any time during the admissions process. You can add to and edit any information on your application until you submit the completed application. The online application can be submitted up until 5:00 p.m. ET on the day of the deadline.

Preparing a Successful Application

While there are no fixed requirements regarding age and work experience, class profile averages typically reflect:

  • Eight or more years of work experience
  • Five or more years in a managerial position
  • A college degree or the equivalent
  • Senior management experience or potential
  • All applicants must have the written endorsement (a sponsorship form) from their organization, confirming that the organization supports the application and understands the time commitments required to fulfill all class attendance and study.

Wharton Executive MBA Admission Requirements and Eligibility

The Wharton MBA Program for Executives is designed for fully employed, seasoned working professionals from a wide variety of industries with at least eight (8) years of full-time work experience.

If you have fewer than eight (8) years of full time work experience, you can apply as a Fellows Candidate. Fellows candidates are applicants who will have less than eight years of work experience by the start of the program. Organizations support Fellows candidates because of their outstanding promise for advancement in a managerial career. Learn more about the Fellows application process.

What We Look for in Applicants

We do not use formulas or ranking systems, or give specific weight to individual sections of the application. Each component of your application should be as strong as possible, and the pieces should fit together to create a complete picture of who you are as a candidate. We then measure each candidate in the context of a large, talented, and diverse applicant pool.

Academic Profile

We look at all your academic experiences to get a holistic view of your ability to succeed at Wharton. The academic rigor of your curriculum and the intellectual curiosity you have demonstrated are important. Undergraduate and graduate degrees, as well as professional certifications and continuing education credit in both related and unrelated fields, will be considered.

Standardized test scores also help us evaluate scholarship. We accept the GMAT, GRE and EA. We accept scores from tests taken either at home or at testing centers.

We evaluate the overall score and each section of the test. Please see the Application Requirements section to help you decide which test to take or schedule a conversation with an admissions team member to discuss your best option.

There are no cut-off scores, but we expect higher than average test results. In the most recently admitted class:

  • The average GMAT score for admitted applicants was 711
  • The average EA scores for admitted applicants was 155
  • We do not have statistics available for the GRE due to the limited quantity we receive.

If you have been out of school for several years, we recommend that you take advantage of test preparation resources and allow enough time to take the test more than once. We’ve found that most people are rustier than they realize.

Professional Development and Goals

The career choices you have made to date are important to the Committee in evaluating your application. Significant attention is given to the length of time spent in a management role, progression in job responsibilities, and total work experience. We also look at how you have distinguished yourself professionally. We do not place value solely on the type of work you have done, but rather on what you have gained from your experiences. Someone who has worked as a museum curator, for example, may be just as strong a candidate as someone who has been in a management role. What you have contributed is more important than the industry, and what you’ve learned from successes and failures is meaningful.

We are very interested in both your short and long-term goals, and why business school, specifically the Wharton MBA program, represents an important step in achieving these goals. We assess the leadership potential already demonstrated through your work; whether you were leading projects, effecting change within a team, or directly managing personnel. Leadership potential can be demonstrated in activities outside of work. We look for evidence of effective interpersonal skills because the Wharton environment emphasizes leadership in the context of teamwork.

The endorsement of your organization is vital to your success in the program. How enthusiastic is your sponsoring supervisor or management about your candidacy? Has careful thought been given to how your MBA experience and degree will fit into your career development within the company, both during the program and after graduation? Have you thought through the impact of your participation on others in the organization, so that you have the support of your colleagues as well as your supervisors?

Personal Qualities

The Admissions Committee is interested in the whole person. What makes you unique? What can you contribute to the Wharton community?

We look for evidence of personal leadership qualities, such as ethical integrity, self-motivation, empathy, communication skills, and personal style. How have you challenged yourself, how have you reached beyond your comfort zone, how have you effected change in your organization, or led a team through a process?

We consider extracurricular and volunteer leadership because we believe that applicants who get involved beyond what is required are well-rounded and engaged, and want to make a difference in their communities. In addition, candidates should demonstrate a balance between work and outside activities.

Team skills are essential to success in Wharton’s curriculum because of our learning team structure. Students are assigned to teams with a flat hierarchy. Each team is comprised of individuals from multiple industries with diverse goals and backgrounds. Flexibility, tolerance for difference, and effective communication skills are all required to succeed.

Entrepreneurial spirit does not necessarily mean that you have experience with an entrepreneurial business. Rather, it means you can think and behave in an innovative manner. This is as important in large international companies as it is in small start-ups. We will therefore look at how you have challenged the status quo and made a difference, regardless of your environment.

Dual Applications

Wharton does not accept dual applications to its Executive and traditional MBA programs. We encourage prospective students to contact the Admission team if they are unsure which program may be a better fit.

Interviews

Interviews are by invitation only. If selected for an interview, we will contact you to arrange the interview as part of the application process. The interview is a chance for us to ask specific questions about your candidacy and for you to provide a more personal explanation about your professional background and interests.

Interviews are conducted via Zoom and are one-on-one conversations with a member of the Admissions Team.

Sponsorship

For most applicants, proposing and receiving sponsorship is a crucial part of the application process. While employer endorsement is a requirement for admission, financial sponsorship is at the discretion of the student’s organization. Financial sponsorship can send a strong signal of endorsement for an applicant and can return significant benefits to the sponsoring organization.

Fellows candidates (those who will have fewer than eight years of full time work experience by the start of the program) are required to receive at least 50% of the cost of the program covered by their organization. More information can be found here.

Applicants are encouraged to approach their employers early in the application consideration process and make a case for financial sponsorship.

Transfer Admission

Wharton has a two-year residency requirement. No credit toward the degree can be given to candidates on the basis of work completed in any other program. With Vice Dean approval, students can gain waivers for up to two core courses in which they have considerable experience, allowing them to take more electives.

Deferred Admission

All deferral and extension requests are handled on a case-by-case basis, and it is our general practice not to grant deferrals and extensions, except in extenuating circumstances. Candidates who wish to request a deferral or extension must submit the reason and request in writing to the Director of Admissions.

If the deferral request is granted, a deposit will be required to reserve a place in the class; this deposit will be applied to the first semester’s tuition. If the deferral request is denied, the candidate will need to reapply and may or may not be admitted based on the competitiveness of the applicant pool that given year.

Reapplication Process

Applicants can reapply to the Wharton EMBA program, but not during the same academic year. If you applied and were not admitted and would like to reapply to the program, please follow these procedures. The most important thing is that you demonstrate through essays, subsequent career growth, and/or academic preparation that you are a stronger candidate than when you previously applied. We recommend you review the EMBA application requirements before submitting your new application to ensure they have not changed since you last applied.

1) Complete entire application
2) Include with your essays the following:

Reapplicant Essay
Required; 300 word limit
What have you been doing since you previously applied for admission and what impact have your activities had on the clarification of your goals? Include any steps you have taken to enhance your preparation for admission to Wharton.

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How to Apply for the Wharton EMBA

1. Online Application

Starting your online application form registers you as an applicant within our system and ensures that you are notified of any changes to the application process.

Admission to the Wharton MBA Program for Executives requires the completion of our online application, which includes the provision of background information: contact information (e.g., mailing address and phone number), biographical information, academic degrees earned, professional experience, and optional family information.

2. Sponsorship Form

Sponsorship forms are to be provided by the person who has the authority to sign off on the time commitment involved with the program. The form is completed via a secure link sent directly to the sponsor from the CollegeNet application system.

Fellows applicants
Fellows applicants, applicants with less than eight (8) years of full time work experience by the program start date, are required to receive substantial financial and program-related support from their company. If the company is unable to commit to this amount, an explanation as to why should be provided within the sponsorship form.

Self-employed candidates
A co-founder, partner, or head of the company’s Board of Directors may complete the sponsorship form on behalf of a self-employed candidate. If these are not available, please reach out to the admissions team for further guidance and approval.

3. Letter of Recommendation

The Admissions Committee requires one online letter of recommendation from your current direct manager (or above), who can give insight to the Committee on you as an employee.

4. Resume

Please upload a 1-2 page resume. We are interested in your functional job skills, breadth and depth of experience, demonstrated leadership and management skills, and your potential for growth.

  • Only upload the important parts of your document. Do not include pictures, graphics, and unnecessary text.
  • Check the size of your file. It should not exceed 10 MB.
  • Make sure the uploaded document is legible. Illegible documents will not be accepted and will delay the evaluation of your application.

5. Essay Questions

Essay Question 1

Required; 400 word limit

What are your career objectives and how will the Wharton MBA Program for Executives contribute to your attainment of this objective?

Essay Question 2

Required: 400 word limit

Taking into consideration your background – personal, professional, and/or academic – how do you plan to make specific, meaningful contributions to the Wharton community?

Essay Question 3

Optional; 300 word limit

If necessary, you may use this optional essay to explain any extenuating circumstances of which the Admissions Committee should be aware.

6. GMAT, GRE, or EA scores

All applicants must submit standardized test results by the application deadline to be considered for admission. Applicants have the option of taking the Graduate Management Admissions Test (older version or Focus Edition, both now referred to as GMAT), the Graduate Record Examination (GRE), or the Executive Assessment (EA). All applicants must submit test scores from the GRE, GMAT, or EA that are no more than five years old. We accept scores from tests taken at a test center or at home/online. All at-home tests are monitored by a human proctor online. Scores may be self-reported; when self-reporting your score(s) in the application please list your highest score first. Should you receive an offer of admission, official scores will then be requested for verification.

Please note that it can take up to seven business days to receive test scores from at home/online exams.

More information about the at-home GMAT can be found on MBA.com.
More information about the at-home GRE can be found on the ETS website,
More information about the at-home EA can be found on GMAC’s website.

There is no minimum score requirement for each test; however, test scores have proven to be a useful predictor of success in the quantitative courses that are an important foundation for the MBA for Executives program. All scores are valid for five years from the test date.

Should you have questions about your candidacy or which exam to take, please contact us to schedule a conversation with an admissions advisor and learn more about the differences between the three exams. 

GMAT
Wharton accepts scores from the GMAT Focus Edition, now the only version of the GMAT offered, as part of our evaluation process. The GMAT code for the Wharton MBA Program for Executives is G56-97-36 for Philadelphia, G56-97-14 for San Francisco, and G56-97-44 for Global.
For GMAT information and registration, visit: http://www.mba.com.

GRE
The GRE code for the Wharton MBA Program for Executives is 6802.
For GRE information and registration, visit:  http://www.ets.org/gre/

EA
The EA code for the Wharton MBA Program for Executives is G56-97-36 for Philadelphia, G56-97-14 for San Francisco, and G56-97-44 for Global.              For EA information and registration, visit:  http://www.gmac.com/ea

7. TOEFL/PTE

All applicants whose native language (language first learned and spoken at home) is not English, or who did not complete a degree from an institution where English was the language of instruction, are required to take the TOEFL, PTE, or IELTS.

If you earned a bachelor’s or master’s degree from an institution at which English is the language of instruction, the test may be waived.

TOEFLThe code for the Wharton MBA Program is: D810-02

PTEReport your scores directly to The Wharton MBA Program

8. Upload Unofficial Transcripts

Please upload transcripts of all academic work completed at the baccalaureate/undergraduate level and beyond, whether or not for credit or a degree. We do not require a third-party transcript evaluation for international transcripts. However, transcripts from all institutions must be translated into English. Official documents are required upon admission and matriculation.

9. Application Fee

A non-refundable application fee of $200 must accompany your application. This fee, which must be paid by credit card, is processed through the application portal. You will not see the payment option until you submit your application online.

U.S. Military service members (active duty and veterans) and employees of some not-for-profit organizations may be eligible to waive this fee. Please contact the office to which you’re applying before submitting the application to confirm whether you are eligible and, if so, to make the necessary arrangements.

10. Submit the Application

You may begin your online application at any time during the admissions process, and you can continue to edit and add to your information before you hit “submit.”  You have until 5:00 p.m. ET on the day of the deadline to complete your application.

When Decisions Are Released

The Wharton MBA Program for Executives seeks a diverse and well-rounded class. As such, we do not release decisions on a rolling basis and instead evaluate each round of applicants as a whole.

Class Entering in 2025

Application Deadline Interview Invitations Decision Release
Round 1 Monday, October 14, 2024 Monday, November 18, 2024 Thursday, December 19, 2024
Round 2 Tuesday, January 14, 2025 Thursday, February 20, 2025 Thursday, March 27, 2025

How Decisions Are Released

All decisions are released via the Online Application System. You can view the admissions decision by logging into your online application account after 12:00 p.m. ET on the date of decision release. 

Our Admissions Team

All complete applications received by the admissions deadline are thoroughly reviewed by members of the Wharton Executive MBA Admissions Committee.

Applications from the Philadelphia, San Francisco, and Global programs are evaluated equally ensuring the same high standards for all cohorts. You will meet virtually with a member of the Admissions Team during your admissions interview.

Please contact us with any questions.

Frequently Asked Questions

Find answers to all of your questions for an Executive MBA at Wharton.

Have questions about joining the MBA Program for Executives?

One of our Admissions Advisors will be happy to help you.