Strategic Management and Executive Leadership

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.

The following are required:

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.

Core Application Packet

  • Completed online Graduate School application and payment of nonrefundable application fee.
  • Statement of purpose: a 2-3 page essay articulating career and educational goals that demonstrates your written communication skills.
  • Vita or Résumé.
  • Two letters of recommendation that attest to your readiness for graduate study. Letters must be submitted through the online application. Within the online application you will be asked to enter the names and email addresses of two individuals who will be providing your recommendations. Those individuals will receive a note via email asking them to complete a brief form that will serve as your recommendation. Please inform all recommenders they must submit the form for your application to be complete.
  • Official transcripts from all post-secondary institutions attended.
  • Candidates may be asked to participate in a video interview as part of the admissions process.

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
BA 804Ethical Leadership3
BA 888Strategic Leading and Identity3
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 Credits30

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.

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 Fosnocht Misangyi
Director of Graduate Studies (DGS) or Professor-in-Charge (PIC) Jeffrey A Krug
Program Contact

Michelle Kristen Rockower
(814) 865-5290

Program Website View