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The Paul Merage School of Business – University of California, Irvine

UC Irvine Fully Employed MBA Program Structure

The University of California, Irvine Fully Employed MBA Program at the Paul Merage School of Business is a part-time MBA program. Tailored to the needs of working professionals, the UC Irvine Fully Employed MBA program can be completed in 24 to 33 months. The program features the same curriculum and faculty and confers the same degree received by graduates of UC Irvine’s full-time MBA program. With a convenient class schedule that meets on campus twice per week, students experience hands-on learning in a close-knit, collaborative environment that strengthens their professional and personal networks.

UC Irvine Fully Employed MBA students also have the option to select a FLEX structure. The FEMBA FLEX is a hybrid learning program that consists of online courses and four Saturdays on-campus per semester. The curriculum for the FEMBA FLEX is the same as the standard FEMBA structure.


The UC Irvine Fully Employed MBA consists of 21 courses, including nine core courses, nine electives, and three Residentials or off-site learning and executive leadership retreats for a total of 92 units. The FEMBA Program combines the expansive curriculum of the Full-Time MBA program with the unique off-site residentials of the Executive MBA program.

Part-time MBA students start their studies with an Opening Residential: Management of Innovative Organizations. This four-day experience, held in a local business hotel, lays the groundwork for the collaborative FEMBA learning environment. During this residential students work intensively with a cohort and small-study team, getting to know new classmates. Students engage in case analysis, class discussion, presentations, group projects, and experiential learning.

The core curriculum focuses on four key drivers of business growth: strategic innovation, information technology, analytic decision making and collaborative execution. Each of these themes is integrated into the core to help build a solid foundation on which to effectively compete in today’s global economy. The core is delivered in a lockstep sequence, with each quarter building upon the curriculum of the previous quarter.

During the final four quarters in the FEMBA program, students choose from a variety of electives spread across different business areas. Students can specialize in one or more functional areas such as marketing, finance, real estate or strategy, or they can take a variety of courses across areas. Approximately 40 to 50 electives are offered each academic year to FEMBA students.

Part-time MBA students have the opportunity to participate in an international residential. This one-week residential is a rare, firsthand opportunity to learn about the socio-economic, cultural, and political issues faced by critical business players outside the US. Recent trips have been to major cities in China, focusing on how the country became a dominant political and economic force throughout Asia.

The UC Irvine Fully Employed MBA program concludes with a four-day capstone course on Executive Leadership at a mountain retreat conference center. This residential offers a structured setting where students reflect on the knowledge and expertise they have gained during the program, and how they will successfully leverage these as a manager and leader.

Class Profile

The typical UC Irvine Fully Employed MBA Class of 2019 features 100 fall cohort students and 50 spring cohort students. About 37 percent of students that identify as female, and 63 percent male-identified students. Students have an average GPA of 3.14 and a GMAT of 590. The average class age is between 25-and-35-years old and have around 6.4 years of professional experience.


Providing unique programs such as Career Visioning, which helps students determine the best fit career, the Merage School MBA Career Center also offers Career Management Workshops such as Behavioral and Case Style Interviewing and Job Offer Evaluation and Negotiation.

Additionally, students have access to a team of dedicated, business-savvy career advisors who will help prepare them for career success. Second year MBA students provide career coaching and are available to provide first-year students guidance and advice to help them effectively conduct a job search.

The Merage School MBA Career Center partners with students to find internship opportunities with companies ranging from large global firms to start-ups. The Merage School MBA Career Center supports career development and job search by providing resources such as: Career Days and Fairs, Company Presentations, Internship and Full-Time Job Databases, On- and Off-Campus Interviews, Access to Online Resources (CareerSearch, Vault, Wetfeet), UC Business Research Library, Web-based Career Training Modules, and Corporate Contacts Database.

Students in the program see a 35 percent salary boost before graduation.

Tuition, Scholarships, and Financial Aid

Tuition for the UC Irvine Fully Employed MBA class entering the program for all nine quarters will be $98,703. Tuition includes registration, textbooks and other course materials, as well as parking.

All students admitted into the Fully Employed MBA program are automatically considered for merit-based fellowships and are informed of any award upon admission. Criteria for fellowships are based on the strength of the entire application and include academic record professional certifications, work experience, demonstrated or potential management abilities, leadership qualities, articulation of reasons for pursuing an MBA, and clarity of career goals.

The Dean’s Fellowship is awarded to top candidates in each incoming class. Awards are given to individuals who demonstrate exemplary academic and/or professional work experience, as well as the potential to make significant contribution to their future career.

The Distinguished Marketing Fellowship is awarded each year to outstanding admitted students who have demonstrated an ongoing commitment to the field of marketing. Fellowship recipients are selected based on academic and/or professional excellence in marketing, as well as potential for future contributions.

The Engineering Excellence Award recognizes individuals who have made significant contributions to the engineering profession. The award honors individuals who have moved into – or are planning to move into senior management roles.

The Entrepreneurship Award recognizes the growing role of entrepreneurs in fueling economic growth and innovation. The fellowship is awarded to ambitious admitted students who are either launching a start-up or growing an existing business.

The Innovation in Technology Award honors accomplished professionals in the technology sector who have experience or an interest in innovative approaches to business technology.

The Commitment to Non-Profits Award acknowledges the important role of social responsibility to business and community. Recipients are individuals who have made significant contributions to non-profit organizations in either a volunteer or professional capacity.

The Office of Student Financial Services attempts to assist qualified applicants who have financial eligibility to meet their educational and living costs. All United States citizens and permanent residents of the United States may be considered for federally funded programs.

Most student loans are based on either financial need or creditworthiness and are available only to US citizens and permanent residents. Howard students commonly use the Federal Stafford Loan Program, Alternative Education Loans, and the ACCESS Loan Program. Private loans may also be available.


Applicants to the MBA programs must have completed a Baccalaureate degree or recognized qualifications equivalent to a degree. An overall GPA of 3.0 is suggested for applicants, although not required.

To apply to the UC Irvine Fully Employed MBA program, applicants must submit a completed application form, official copies of transcripts from each institution attended, current résumé and two letters of recommendation. The school also requires applicants to complete a personal statement. One optional video essay may also be submitted. Official GMAT score OR GRE scores must also be sent in by applicants, along with a $150 application fee. There is no minimum GMAT score, however students who apply usually score between 670 and 675.  International applicants must submit TOEFL scores that were taken in the past two years. The recommended minimum score on the TOEFL is 600 on the paper-based test or 80 on the online-based test.

An admissions interview is a required part of the admissions process and may be conducted on campus or remotely through Skype. Interviews are scheduled either before or after submitting the online application, and an interview must be completed to be admitted to the program.

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