Do online MBAs miss out on the same networking opportunities as their on-campus colleagues? Not so, say the business students we surveyed for our Online MBA rankings.

Global immersion programs

School-sponsored international trips—also called global immersions or global residencies—are one way online MBA students can maximize their networking potential. Since online MBA students don’t see their classmates every day, these immersive experiences abroad mark a huge opportunity to connect in-person with other students, faculty, and business professionals.

Learn how immersions help online students network, build their resumes, and gain key global perspective at five business schools from our Top 50 Online MBA Programs list.

Hofstra University

While the majority of coursework in the Hofstra Online MBA program is completely online, the Global Practicum on Strategy is an in-person opportunity to visit global companies abroad. Scheduled between first and second year in the program, the weeklong trip is arranged by Hofstra, which covers all program costs. In China, students visited Hong Kong, Shenzhen, Beijing, and Guangzhou interacting with a number of companies during their stay, including Wal-Mart, Morgan Stanley, Lenovo, and the IBM Research Center. In Japan, another cohort of students visited the cities of Tokyo, Yokohama, Osaka, and Kyoto and visited Morgan Stanley MUFG Securities, TKS Group, Japan Post, and Toshiba.

IE University

As an optional component of their Global MBA curriculum, students studying at IE Business School make a weeklong trek to their choice among three destinations as part of Global Immersion Week . Past regions include Shanghai, Miami, San Francisco, Israel, and Sau Paulo. The students see firsthand how business is done in different areas.

Indiana University—Bloomington

Indiana University’s project-based AGILE (Accelerating Global Immersion Leadership Education) elective, helps Kelly Direct Online students gain real-world international business experience. Student teams take on a problem facing an actual company in an emerging market, flexing their project management chops as well as their skills in data collection, marketing and operations research, consulting, and entrepreneurship. Previous AGILE students traveled to Athens, Sao Paulo, New Delhi, and Johannesburg, to name a few locales.

Syracuse University

MBA@Syracuse students are required to participate in three residencies throughout their program, which can take place in the United State or in cities abroad. Residencies are three-days long (with an option to extend for a full week) and are based on a topic relevant to the business community of the host city. Past residency locations have included Dublin, Lima, and Seoul.

University of Florida

Online MBA students at University of Florida's Hough Graduate School of Business may register for the two-credit elective course Global Immersion Experience (GIE) which includes a 7–10 day expedition in expanding and developing markets. Prior to their travel experience, students meet for in-person and online class sessions. Recent locations include Argentina, Brazil, United Arab Emirates, Turkey, and China.

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