Executive MBA

Experiential Learning

Whether it is a simulation, a consultative experience, or a real-life business case, in experiential learning scenarios, you will be thrust into an environment where the challenges facing the business are ambiguous and unstructured, and the outcomes are based upon real circumstances.

You will work across disciplines and tools to understand the nature of the challenge, and how to respond to either protect the company, exploit the opportunity, enhance the strategy, learn from a mistake and iterate, or recover from failure.

Most scenarios will be approached in teams, which will help you gain additional insight and enhanced soft skills that will be critical to your personal future success.

Executive MBA Immersions: Dubai, 2021

In an era of business ambiguity and flux, the global course teaches EMBA students the skills to pivot, adapt, respond to and meet the needs of today’s organizations. In the fall of 2021, Executive MBA students and faculty traveled to Dubai and Abu Dhabi, UAE to leverage their coursework and consultative skills with area businesses. Students gained hands-on experience working with organizations on projects that focused on inclusion for people of determination, climate-resilient strategies that used environmental finance, the development of enhanced female talent pipelines to support the United Nation’s Sustainable Goal of Gender Equality and sustainability and the environment.

  • How We Integrate Experiential Learning


    Each course is designed to integrate experiential learning into the curriculum. Hands on opportunities build leadership and teamwork skills, and put analytic knowledge to practice. Students gain hands on experience through case-based coursework, consultative projects with corporate partners, high-intensity virtual simulations, and global immersion trips.

    2020 War Games Elective

    SMU Cox launched War Games, a high-intensity immersive course that simulates the moves and counter moves of key companies and influencers in the marketplace to anticipate what they are likely to do when there are changes in market dynamics. Students participate in an immersive competition and gain experience building and deploying a competitive intelligence framework, scenario planning, and timely decision making skills with a focus on industries undergoing rapid and disruptive change.

  • Global Business Environments

    Get a close-up view of other countries' business mechanics while you expand your understanding of the cultures. Through an immersive 9 to 10 day global trip that includes face time with high-level executives and interactions with government officials, you'll immerse yourself in different economic, political, and cultural environments. Students most recently traveled to Lima, Peru, Santiago, Chile, Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo, Brazil and Dubai and Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.

  • Centers and Institutes

    SMU Cox is home to numerous Centers and Institutes, serving as resources to the University, the community and the world. Many also offer opportunities for scholarly research and writing, conferences, periodic lectures and symposia.The expansive range of focus includes entrepreneurship, leadership, energy, real estate, customer engagement, financial studies, economic freedom, and more.

    You'll spend plenty of time with the Business Leadership Center getting specialized training in leadership and communication — critical skills valued by corporate recruiters. Off-campus learning programs give you a chance to study with experts and apply your newly acquired skills. Favorite among Cox students is the Disney Institute, a five-day program that takes you backstage and into Disney's corporate offices to study the Disney approach to customer service and leadership. It's a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to learn from the company that exemplifies best-in-class management training worldwide. Students also have the opportunity to give back to the community while working on real-life challenges faced by several local nonprofits through the Nonprofit Consulting Program.

    Learn about the Business Leadership Center

  • Graduate Student Clubs

    The Cox Graduate Programs offer a number of clubs and organizations through which you can refine your leadership skills and build camaraderie. With over twenty clubs and leadership opportunities, students can expand their network and knowledge across industries like the Consulting & Corporate Strategy or Finance clubs, affinity groups like our Veterans in Business or Black Graduate Business clubs, or even social organizations like the Foodie or Rugby clubs. Learn more about the ways you can get involved and get connected with fellow Cox graduate students with shared interests or experiences.

    Click here to see Student Clubs

Next Steps

Have a question? Join us for an upcoming event to learn more about our MBA programs.