10+ Amazing MBA Programs for Avid Travelers

“18 Amazing MBA Programs for Avid Travelers” by Alissa Alvarez was originally published on OnlineMBA.com.

Heading back to school to get your MBA doesn’t mean an end to traveling the globe, trying out new foods, and learning about new cultures. In fact, for many students it may offer a wealth of opportunities to blend business education with a few months, or even a year, living and learning abroad. Whether you want to build a career in international business or just can’t seem to shake the travel bug, there are a wide range of MBA programs that can help you to meet your needs, some from the most prestigious business schools in the US. Though this is not a complete list by any means, read on to find out which MBA programs can best help you see the world while preparing for your future career.

  1. UCLA Travel-Study ProgramAt UCLA’s Anderson School of Management, students who want to combine a career in business with travel abroad can take part in the International Travel-Study Program offered through the school. Students in the EMBA and FEMBA programs can sign up to travel to places like Dubai, Barcelona, Santiago, and Buenos Aires to take courses in business from well-regarded professors connected with UCLA.
  2. Capstone WorldStride ProgramsEven if you’re enrolled in an MBA program that doesn’t have a formal study abroad program, that doesn’t mean you can’t jet off to foreign lands to get your learn on. Take a look at what Capstone has to offer. The business provides WorldStrides programs to numerous MBA programs around the nation (30 and counting) and may be able to arrange something for you too, no matter where you are. You may even be able to design a custom program that best meets your personal travel and learning goals.
  3. Thunderbird Global ExperienceThunderbird is one of the best business schools in the U.S., so it should come as no surprise that the school also offers a top-notch program for educational travel. Called Global Experience, MBA students at Thunderbird can participate in exchange programs in countries like Spain, France, Mexico, Finland, India, Korea, and Costa Rica. Or they can simply study abroad, take summer language learning classes overseas, or participate in amazing “winterims” or “summerims” that allow students to learn about the real-world processes involved with global business while seeing the sights in South Africa, Asia, Europe, or Latin America.
  4. University of Georgia MBA ExchangeFull-time MBA students at the U of Georgia’s Terry School of Business can head overseas through over 100 different exchange agreements the school has with schools around the world. Those looking for an in-depth experience can do a full semester abroad or, for those who just want a taste of life and work abroad, there are single course offerings as well. One of the most popular destinations in recent years has been China, where students meet with business execs, take courses, and learn about Chinese culture.
  5. Pepperdine Study Abroad ProgramsPepperdine University’s Graziadio School of Business and Management is on one of the most beautiful campuses in the U.S., overlooking the Pacific in scenic Malibu, but if you feel the need to branch out and see other scenic locales, the school offers a range of programs. Students can choose to head abroad for a semester to one of the school’s partner universities in Europe, Latin America, or Asia, or take shorter electives abroad, chosen from a list of Global Business Intensive Courses.

  1. NYU Outgoing ExchangeAt NYU’s Stern School of Business, there is no shortage of options for MBA students who love to travel. The school is a member of the Partnership in International Management, linking it to a number of other amazing business schools and programs around the world. For students who want the full study-abroad experience, programs for a full semester are available and in past years students have stayed in Spain or China. There are also shorter 6-week jaunts overseas during the summer, offering students opportunities for travel to Argentina, Germany, Denmark, South Korea, and other exciting countries.
  2. Michigan State University Global InitiativesThrough study abroad programs at MSU, students enrolled in an MBA program can travel nearly anywhere on the globe to learn about the business, culture, and laws of other nations as well as explore topics that are key to running an international business. In recent years, students have traveled for both short and long trips to Africa, China, Mexico, Argentina, Chile, and Uruguay. Students who want to spend their summers abroad, or at least part of them, can take part in an internship program as well.
  3. University of Pittsburgh School of Business at Katz Overseas MBA ProgramStudents can not only get an International MBA at Katz but can also spend a good part of their education learning in the countries where they might one day want to work. Through the school’s study abroad program, students can head to partner universities to complete some of their MBA coursework, including schools in places like France, Germany, and Chile. In addition to semester-long programs, there are also shorter summer sessions where students can improve language proficiency, study global business, and immerse themselves in another culture.
  4. University of Chicago International Business Exchange ProgramBooth School of Business offers a number of highly regarded MBA programs, and students in all of them, especially those in International MBA programs, are encouraged to take part in study abroad opportunities. The International MBA program requires one semester of study abroad, but students from other MBA programs can also head abroad to expand their horizons and travel as well. Through the International Business Exchange Program students make their way to one of Booth’s 33 partner schools around the globe, including some big names in business education in the UK, Europe, Asia, and Latin America. In addition to these study abroad opportunities, Booth also offers group trips abroad, industry treks, and a wide range of electives and labs overseas.
  5. Wharton Global Immersion ProgramIt’s one of the best-known and highest ranked business programs in the U.S., so students at Wharton expect the best when it comes to international opportunities for study. MBA students with the travel bug won’t be disappointed, as there are numerous ways to get in some travel while earning an MBA at Wharton. Students can enroll in the International MBA program, take specific courses abroad, engage in global modular courses, take part in the Global Immersion Program, get experience through a Global Consulting Practicum, volunteer abroad through the Wharton International Volunteer Program, opt for an international exchange, or just have a bit of fun learning about international business through a global career trek.

  1. Duke University International Business ProgramsDuke’s Fuqua School of Business takes part in CIBER’s (Center for International Business Education and Research) study abroad programs, allowing students in their MBA programs to study abroad for a semester if they’d like. They also offer a wide range of other opportunities to explore the world of global business. Don’t want to commit an entire semester to travel? Participate in conferences and workshops instead, or do short-term study abroad. There are options to meet almost every student’s needs and interests.
  2. University of South Carolina IMBAOne of the easiest ways to travel while getting an MBA, and after you start a career, is to enroll in an International MBA program like that offered by South Carolina’s Moore School of Business. It requires students to spend a semester abroad taking courses and meeting with international business professionals, so travel is an integral part of the learning experience. In addition to taking courses overseas, students will have to complete an international internship, which usually lasts about 20 weeks, something no other business school offers or requires of students.
  3. Harvard Immersion Experience ProgramIn addition to the standard study abroad programs offered by many business schools, HBS offers students a chance to enroll in the Immersion Experience Program (IXP). This program focuses on different business and entrepreneurship topics each session, and this year will address issues like business in China, emerging markets, social enterprise, and global innovation strategies. And, even better for travel-crazy students, the programs take place all over the globe, in places like Brazil, China, India, Japan, Rwanda, and Malaysia.
  4. Columbia Chazen MBA Exchange ProgramAt Columbia, students who are avid travelers won’t have to slow down while getting their MBAs. Instead, they can take part in a couple of different programs that are perfect for learning while seeing the world. The first is an International Study Tour, which brings students into international businesses to let them see how companies, factories, and other aspects of business are run in countries around the world. A more extensive overseas experience can be found through the Chazen MBA Exchange Program, which places students in one of 24 MBA schools around the globe where they’ll take classes, visit businesses, and improve their language and cultural skills.
  5. USC Study Abroad ProgramsUSC offers three unique programs for MBAs looking to get in a little travel time while learning, as well as the standard study abroad opportunities. The first, called PM.Globe, is a macroeconomics course for the MBA Program for Professionals and Managers and is required of all students. In conjunction with courses taken at USC, students will travel to Shanghai, Singapore, Bangkok, Tokyo, Seoul, or Beijing to observe what they’ve learned firsthand. The second program is called Global Social Entrepreneurship and is geared towards students who want to do good with their business expertise. Students will travel to Cambodia (or in the future to several other locations) to learn about ways they can help end human trafficking and other human rights abuses. Finally, there’s a program called Global Public Health Capacity Building, which takes students to Brazil to help them understand how to improve healthcare in impoverished areas around the world.

  1. UC Berkeley Exchange ProgramsFor students who want a break from the warm weather and blue skies of Berkeley, there are plenty of opportunities to study overseas. Second-year MBAs can travel to the school’s partner institutions, in Europe and China, for a chance to not only get a change of scenery but also take unique courses and acquire cultural knowledge. The school also offers an International Business Development Program, giving students the chance to apply the skills they’re learning in an MBA program to a real-world consulting situation, spending three weeks on location working in a foreign nation.
  2. University of Michigan MBA Exchange ProgramIf you thought exchange programs were only for high-schoolers, think again. Even MBAs can take part in exchanges, spending a full semester abroad at one of the University of Michigan’s partner schools, the majority of which are located in Europe. Students will take a full load of courses at their host school and many will get a chance to take field trips to local businesses to learn more about global businesses. For those who prefer to do their traveling over the summer when course loads are lighter, a summer program is available as well, sending students for a multi-week trip to Germany to study in the Rhine Valley.
  3. Stanford MBA Study TripsWhen you just can’t get enough of traveling, a trip is a trip, even if you’re studying. Students at Stanford can do just that, traveling around the world to take part in study trips that are both educational and fun. In past years, trips have been to places close to home like Washington, D.C., as well as locales that are a little more far-flung like Russia, China, India, Chile, Brazil, and Romania. For students looking for a longer trip, there are a variety of global experiences available as well, including a global management immersion experience.

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