Strategic Management and Executive Leadership

Graduate Program HeadVilmos Misangyi
Program CodeSMEXL
Campus(es)World Campus (M.Mgt.)
Degrees ConferredMaster of Management (M.Mgt.)
The Graduate Faculty


The Master of Management in Strategic Management and Executive Leadership program will prepare graduates to stand out in a competitive job market by studying at a highly reputed business school with some of the world’s leading academic thinkers and industry experts. This program will provide students with the strategic management, leadership, and organizational capabilities essential for a senior-level leadership position. Students will learn the skills to formulate compelling strategies, align organizational elements in the pursuit of those strategies, and build culture and commitment across an organization. The program will be taught by the same world-class professors who teach our M.B.A. students. A solid foundation in strategy, leadership, organizational change, diversity and ethics will make the target audience more attractive for positions of increasing leadership responsibility and prepare them to advance more rapidly into those positions. These learning outcomes will be achieved by a combination of lectures by faculty, invited guest lecturers, reading of key literature, individual and team projects, and practical involvement in a leadership culminating experience.

Admission Requirements

Applicants apply for admission to the program via the Graduate School application for admission. Requirements listed here are in addition to Graduate Council policies listed under GCAC-300 Admissions Policies.

Applicants apply for admission to the program via the Graduate School application for admission. Requirements listed here are in addition to Graduate Council policies listed under GCAC-300 Admissions Policies.

A completed online Graduate School Application for Admission is required, including:

  • A minimum of 5 years of management experience.  Exceptional candidates who fall outside of this guideline may be considered.
  • Statement of purpose: a 2-3 page essay articulating career and educational goals.
  • Résumé reflecting relevant experience.
  • Official transcripts from all post-secondary institutions attended.
  • Additional information may be requested by the program.

GMAT and/or GRE scores will not be required for admission. Accordingly, these scores will not be accepted.  

The language of instruction at Penn State is English. English proficiency test scores (TOEFL/IELTS) may be required for international applicants. See GCAC-305 Admission Requirements for International Students for more information.

Exceptions to GCAC-305 will be considered by the program. Exceptions may or may not be granted by the Graduate School.

Degree Requirements

Requirements listed here are in addition to Graduate Council policies listed under GCAC-700 Professional Degree Policies.

A minimum of 30 credits at the 400, 500, or 800 level is required, with a minimum of 18 credits at the 500 or 800 level, and at least 6 credits at the 500 level.

Required Courses
The core SMEXL courses are designed to teach students to think more strategically, assess external trends, learn from exemplar organizations, and enhance their ability to formulate, articulate, and implement strategy.
MBADM 571Global Strategic Management3
MGMT 565Power and Influence3
MGMT 831Strategy Implementation and Organizational Change3
MGMT 845Leading Diverse Organizations1-3
BA 804Ethical Leadership3
Primary Concentrations
In addition to the core curriculum, students will select a 6-credit primary concentration in the fields of either Negotiations and Influence, Corporate Innovation and Entrepreneurship, or Business Sustainability Strategy. The courses that satisfy the concentration requirements can be chosen from a list of approved courses maintained by the graduate program office.6
Students will also complete 6 credits of elective courses. A list of elective courses approved to count towards the degree requirements will be maintained by the program office.6
Culminating Experience
BA 865Strategic Leadership (Capstone Course)3
Total Credits28-30

The culminating experience for the degree is a capstone course, BA 865 Strategic Leadership, that provides an opportunity for students to apply and integrate the knowledge and skills that were gained throughout the SMEXL program.


A graduate minor is available in any approved graduate major or dual-title program. The default requirements for a graduate minor are stated in Graduate Council policies listed under GCAC-600 Research Degree Policies and GCAC-700 Professional Degree Policies, depending on the type of degree the student is pursuing:

Student Aid

World Campus students in graduate degree programs may be eligible for financial aid. Refer to the Tuition and Financial Aid section of the World Campus website for more information.


Graduate courses carry numbers from 500 to 699 and 800 to 899. Advanced undergraduate courses numbered between 400 and 499 may be used to meet some graduate degree requirements when taken by graduate students. Courses below the 400 level may not. A graduate student may register for or audit these courses in order to make up deficiencies or to fill in gaps in previous education but not to meet requirements for an advanced degree.


Campus World Campus
Graduate Program Head Vilmos Misangyi
Director of Graduate Studies (DGS) or Professor-in-Charge (PIC) Albert Vicere
Program Contact

Michelle Kristen Rockower
(814) 865-5290

Program Website View