As we’ve previously shared, the Executive MBA recently unveiled a number of updates, including expanded global residency locations, increased electives and a simplified schedule.

Earlier this month, Director of Admissions Brett Twitty and Director of Global Executive Programs Ladi Carr hosted a webinar about the global experiences available to Executive MBA (EMBA) and Global Executive MBA (GEMBA) students.

In this session, Twitty and Carr highlight a number of global-related topics, including global residencies and Global Consulting Projects. Check out a recording of the webinar below.

Watch the Global Opportunities Webinar Recording

How Do Global Opportunities Differ Between EMBA and GEMBA? Read on for a Comparison of Darden’s Executive Formats

People often wonder why students choose one format over the other.

For many students, the EMBA/GEMBA choice comes down to a desire to maximize global exposure during the program. The MBA is a terminal degree for most of our students, so why not do and see as much as possible?

For other students, cost and schedule/time are important decision drivers. That said, given that the 21 months of the program are delivered over three calendar years (all students start in August and graduate 21 months later in May), the 15 additional days out of the office between the formats is not as significant as it might at first seem.

It is worth mentioning that you are applying to our Executive MBA program and not a particular format. We do ask on the application about your format preference (EMBA/GEMBA/Both), but this answer is not binding in any way, and admitted students are offered their choice of formats (EMBA or GEMBA). Students then indicate their format choice when accepting their offer.

While EMBA format students have the option of adding additional global residencies for an additional fee ($4,200 per additional residency), if you think you may want to do more than one global residency, we strongly encourage you to consider the GEMBA format. GEMBA students are the only students who are guaranteed a global residency in each of the four travel periods.

From a scheduling standpoint, our executive formats have never been more similar. Candidates are often surprised to learn that our two formats are integrated, meaning if you come for a class visit in the Washington, D.C., area (which we strongly encourage you to do!), you will find EMBA and GEMBA students sitting in class together. In fact, the only real difference between EMBA and GEMBA at Darden is the number of required global residencies (one for EMBA format students, four for GEMBA format students), and the scheduling and cost differences that result from GEMBA’s additional global requirements.

Consider the formats’ respective schedules: Both are 21 months in duration.


  • Two leadership residencies (delivered in Charlottesville, on the main Darden grounds)
  • 20 weekend residencies (occurring, on average, once a month, Friday through Sunday, Friday classes start at noon Eastern Time. Sunday classes conclude around 3 p.m.)
  • One global residency (students can add additional global residencies for an additional fee of $4,200 per residency)
  • Distance learning (most Tuesday and Thursday evenings, 7:00-8:30 p.m.)
  • Total class days out of the office: 35


  • Two leadership residencies
  • 20 Weekend Residencies
  • Four global residencies (students travel in each of four travel periods and choose from three concurrent trips offered per period)
  • Distance learning
  • Total class days out of the office: 50

With the recent global updates, the global residencies function like elective courses. Instead of spending half their time in class and half their time outside the classroom, students now fully focus on immersing in the location. This change was in direct response to student feedback, and we couldn’t be more excited about how this will impact students’ experiences abroad.

In addition, due to the increased number of global residency destinations (as many as 12 locations), we will now be traveling with smaller groups (typically between 20 and 35 students). This will allow for a more unified and lockstep travel experience, and will also allow us to visit even more businesses and points of interest.

And last but not least, let’s talk about costs. There is a roughly $11,000 difference between the tuition and fees for EMBA and GEMBA. For our Class of 2022, our Executive MBA tuition and fees are $166,100 and for our Global Executive MBA format, the tuition and fees are $177,500. It is also worth noting that airfare to and from the global residency locations is not included in tuition and fees. However, lodging, most meals and all residency-related transportation are included in these figures.

Students traveling on a fourth global residency receive a small scholarship ($1,200) offsetting the cost of this last trip.

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