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Unlock your full potential as a nonprofit leader with an Executive MBA. Hear from Liza Ray, EMBA 2022,
how an MBA can help you make an impact.

We are still accepting Autumn 2024 applications. However, late applicants should have a minimum of 10 years of overall professional experience. If desired, potential applicants can schedule a one-on-one meeting with the Director of Admissions.

Foster Executive MBA endeavors to admit the most professionally diverse cohort possible so, we can maximize classroom learning opportunities for our students. The EMBA Admission Committee considers a variety of factors with the strongest emphasis on overall professional and leadership / managerial experience. Applications are accepted throughout the year and reviewed during three application rounds. The information below will assist you in better understanding the Foster EMBA application and admission processes.

Required Qualifications

Executive MBA students are accomplished, aspirational mid-senior managers and leaders interested in understanding the language of business to qualify for more strategic roles who have:

  • A minimum of 7 years full-time professional work experience
  • An undergraduate degree – from a regionally accredited U.S. university or equivalent
  • A 3.0 grade-point-average (on a 4.0 scale) for the last 90 graded quarter credits or 60 graded semester credits of your undergraduate degree. EMBA can consider an applicant with a GPA below a 3.0. Contact EMBA Admissions for more information.
  • English proficiency – view information for non-U.S. university degrees

Selection Criteria

Each entering class is approximately 70 students, divided between our Monthly and Weekly Cohorts, who are selected to represent diverse industries, job functions, and companies/organizations. In addition to the Required Qualifications listed above, the admissions committee also evaluates each applicant according to the following criteria:

  • Alignment/fit with UW Foster and Executive MBA community
  • Demonstrated potential for executive-level leadership roles
  • Ability to successfully complete a graduate management program of study
  • Probable contribution to the cohort class discussions
  • Ability/willingness to commit the required time and energy
  • Demonstrated record as an effective small-team contributor
  • Ability to enhance the class’ professional background diversity
  • Preference for applicants with direct leadership/managerial experience (includes formal supervisory responsibility, P&L responsibility, strategy development, cross functional team leader experience, and/or direct program, project and/or product management experience)

Application Deadlines

Foster EMBA processes and reviews applications in “rounds” (see chart below). NOTE: The application submission date is used to determine preference priority for the required International Immersion.

If you want learn about your potential eligibility, you can send a current resume/LinkedIn profile URL to [email protected].

EMBA Program Application Rounds and Deadlines

Round 1 – December 1 Round 2 – February 1 Round 3 – April 1
Applicants meeting all admissions criteria (10+ years professional experience; U.S. undergraduate degree; 3.0/4.0 GPA) X X X
International Applicants (Canadian citizens and U.S. work visas only); native language is NOT English; and/or all degree(s) from outside the U.S. X X
Applicants < 10 years of direct leadership / management professional experience; < 3.0 cumulative gpa X X

Required New Student Events

EMBA Summer Workshop: July 9-August 15, 2024
JumpStart! (program unofficial start): Friday, Aug. 23 (Weekly Cohort) or Saturday, Aug. 24, 2024 (Monthly Cohort)
Fall Residence: Monday, Sept. 16-Friday, Sept. 20, 2024 (full days, all days)

Completing an Application

Applications can be submitted after: 1) creating the applicant profile; 2) uploading your current resume; 3) uploading your personal statement; 4) uploading your unofficial transcript; providing the names and contact information for three recommendations; and 5) and paying the application fee. Recommendations and the organizational endorsement can be submitted after filing your application.

Online Application Profile

Create your online application profile via the UW Graduate Admissions website

  1. Select “Graduate” as your application type, and “Business Administration – Foster School of Business – Executive MBA” as your graduate program.
  2. Indicate the quarter and year you wish to enter (e.g. Autumn 2024).
  3. Make Cohort selection – i.e. Monthly Cohort or Weekly Cohort. Select ultimate degree for this program as “Master’s.”

Transcripts & GPA Reporting

Unofficial transcripts are required for your undergraduate and graduate, if applicable, institutions attended. Transcripts must be uploaded within the online application; do not send official transcripts to our office via mail. Please see detailed instructions regarding the content and format of acceptable unofficial transcripts below. **Please note that official transcripts sent directly from institutions are required only after an offer of admission is accepted by the applicant. Instructions for submission of official transcripts will be provided to admitted students at a later date.

Required format for all transcripts

We require scanned copies of transcripts submitted via PDF file within the online application. Please make sure to include any transcript keys that describe the institution’s grading scale (typically found on the back side of most domestic transcripts).

Required content for all transcripts

  • Full name of applicant (former names are acceptable if indicated on application)
  • Name of degree-granting institution
  • Title(s) of academic degree(s) awarded
  • Dates of enrollment, including date of graduation/degree conferral
  • Names of individual courses
  • Grades, marks, or ratings of individual courses
  • International transcripts must include official English translations
  • If applicable, both marks sheets and degree statements are required

GPA Requirement

The University of Washington Graduate School has a minimum grade point average (GPA) requirement for all graduate admission applicants. A minimum GPA of 3.0/4.0 (U.S. scale) or better is generally the standard for a competitive candidate. However, we holistically review all aspects of your application including prior academic performance when making an admission decision. If you have specific concerns related to your undergraduate GPA, please email the program admission director with “Admission GPA requirement” in the subject line.

Reporting your Grade Point Average

The Graduate School Application asks applicants to report their Grade Point Average (GPA) on a 0.0 – 4.0 (U.S. scale) for the last 90 quarter or 60 semester graded credits. Specific instructions are provided on the Graduate School Application for converting and calculating your GPA if your university was not on such a system, and for converting from an international grading system to a 4.0 scale. Please read and follow the instructions carefully for converting your GPA to a 4.0 scale to complete this question. If you’d like to assess your GPA ahead of applying, the application refers applicants to the Foreign Credits website and to use the GPA calculator for this process.

If you attended a university (ex: The Evergreen State College) that does not grade courses or provide a GPA, check the “I do not have a GPA” box.

Personal Statement

This item is very important in the review process. It is your opportunity to explain why an MBA is good for you and your career and how you will add value in the Executive MBA learning environment. The personal statement should minimally address the following four topics:

  1. Why are you interested in earning an MBA? What specific business knowledge, skills or insights do you hope to further develop?
  2. Briefly describe one business lesson/insight AND one people leadership (direct/indirect) lesson/insight you have gained from your current or previous roles that may be unique to your industry or would add value to an Executive MBA classroom discussion.
  3. Describe the most challenging team you have been on (either as a leader or contributor). What did you learn about yourself from that experience?
  4. Engaging and contributing to your EMBA team and classroom learning, as well as successfully completing classes will require significant effort and time. Given your busy work and personal schedules, how have you prepared to dedicate the time required?

There is no minimum length. Most statements are two to four pages. The document is uploaded as part of your online application submission.

Résumé / Curriculum Vitae (CV)

Your resume/CV is the most important part of your application. It outlines your professional work history to help EMBA admission readers understand how you might contribute to classroom discussions. You are not limited to one page – more is better. If submitting a CV, we recommend listing your full-time work experience toward the top; this allows highlighting of your work experience for admission readers.

We consider full-time professional work that preceded an undergraduate degree. On the other hand, we typically do not consider experience from graduate research (RA)/teaching (TA) assignments during graduate school. We do, however, consider medical residencies following medical school. We may consider some Post-Doc experience, especially when the role was full-time and included leadership/management responsibilities.

FORMAT – we recommend using a chronological listing, starting with your current or most recent role, rather than functional, targeted, or combination formats. The chronological format more easily shows role/career progression.

ROLES – you should include all roles that you consider part of your professional experience record.

RESPONSIBILITIES – you should indicate the MAJOR job functions for each role listed.

LEADERSHIP/MANAGEMENT – we take a very broad view in this area. When applicable, you want to list experience related to formal direct supervision, cross-functional team leading, and major program, project, or product management responsibilities.

SCOPE – this assesses the impact/reach of your role responsibilities. In addition to knowing your major job functions and leadership/management responsibilities for each role, it is valuable to know the size of teams you led/managed, size of budget you oversaw, or number of customers/patients/clients your efforts impacted.


Two recommendation sources are required. Applicants are encouraged to have their recommenders use the online submission option instead of mail-in option.

The best recommendation sources are from current and former managers. Other recommendation sources include mentors, executive/career coaches, clients, or peers. A good recommender is familiar with your skillset and familiarity with your potential for senior leadership and/or executive roles. View recommenders’ overview.

Applicants do not have to wait until recommendations are completed to submit an application. Recommendations can be submitted after you file your application.

Organizational Acknowledgment

EMBA candidates must supply the Organizational Acknowledgment form from their employer. The form acknowledges that the employing organization agrees to support an EMBA applicant’s attendance at all required class days and activities. The acknowledgment does not imply financial support nor job promotion assurances.

The acknowledgment form can be signed by a company agent authorized to approve an applicant’s time away from the worksite to attend EMBA classes. In most cases, an applicant’s direct manager can sign the form. However, policies vary from organization to organization; if unsure, applicants are encouraged to seek guidance from their direct managers.

Individuals who are self-employed, not currently employed, or will not be employed upon EMBA enrollment need not supply this form. However, these applicants should notify the EMBA admission staff of this fact.

Download the Organizational Acknowledgment form.

Preparation – Summer Workshop

The GMAT, GRE or Executive Assessment are not required for admission consideration. However, applicants with scores may submit them as supplemental information. All entering EMBA students are required to complete the EMBA Summer Workshop.

Upcoming events

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Foster EMBA 2018

If you have any additional questions about our admissions process, please do not hesitate to contact the Executive MBA office at [email protected] or call 206-685-1333 or 888-622-3932. You are also invited to request a personal one-on-one informational interview with an EMBA admissions staff member.