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Darla Moore School of Business

  • 2019 PMBA Class Profile Average Age 34 Average Years in Workforce 10  By Industry 28% Manufacturing/Distribution 26% Business/Financial Services 19% Military/Government/Education 11% Other 9% Healthcare 7% Energy  Undergraduate Majors 38% Business 25% Engineering 17% Other 15% Liberal Arts 5% Science

Admission Requirements

The Professional MBA program is designed for working professionals from all industry backgrounds who possess at least two years of full-time work experience. Applications are accepted year-round for enrollment into the January and August terms.

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, any Professional MBA candidate that can demonstrate strong academic performance and quantitative skills may apply for spring 2021 admission without GMAT or GRE scores. Learn more about test exception requirements.


Admission Criteria

Applicants are required to have at least two years of full-time, professional experience. The ability to contribute real-world knowledge adds value to classroom discussions and enriches the learning experience for all students.

Submitted resumes should be accomplishment based and include job responsibilities (current and past positions) that specifically demonstrate applied quantitative and analytical skills. Candidates are also encouraged to highlight leadership and management experience. Resumes submitted during the application process may be longer than one page, as the primary concern is for candidates to comprehensively convey their professional experience.

An earned undergraduate degree from an accredited institution is required to be considered for admission to the PMBA program. A degree in business is not required. Applicants from any major are encouraged to apply.

Transcripts from all institutions attended must be submitted to the Darla Moore School of Business as part of the admissions process. This includes graduate level credit (if applicable) and any credit received from an institution in which you did not graduate (i.e., transfer credit).

You may upload an unofficial copy of your transcript to expedite the review of your admission application. If you are admitted, you will be required to provide official transcripts from all institutions attended to finalize the admission process. These documents must be sent electronically or to the Moore School's Graduate Admissions office at the address below in a sealed envelope from the respective institution. The Moore School may have access to transcripts of UofSC graduates. Please reach out to your recruiting manager to determine if there is any further action required if the University of South Carolina was the last school you attended.

Please send all transcripts to:

Graduate Admissions
Darla Moore School of Business
University of South Carolina
1014 Greene St.
Columbia, SC 29208

If your college or university offers PDF delivery of transcripts, the PDF should be sent to Lisa Carter, director of admissions for graduate programs. Transcripts sent to individuals other than the director of admissions may not be considered official.

Applicants must provide a valid (five years old or less) Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT) score or a Graduate Record Examination (GRE) score to be considered for admission to the PMBA program. The GMAT and GRE are composed of verbal, quantitative and analytical sections. The GMAT institutional/program code for the Moore School is JV2-TP-50. The GRE code for UofSC is 5818.

Prospective PMBA applicants who meet certain requirements may request a GMAT/GRE waiver. To be eligible for a GMAT/GRE waiver, candidates must have a cumulative undergraduate or graduate GPA of a 3.0 or higher* and fully satisfy the requirements of one of the following options:

*Candidates with exceptional experience who do not meet the GPA requirement will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.

Option A (Exemplary Professional or Military Experience Waiver)
Candidates must possess at least seven years of professional or military experience with increasing levels of responsibility. The candidate’s experience should demonstrate leadership, problem-solving ability and analytical thinking.

Option B (Advanced Degree Waiver)
Candidates must possess a master's or doctoral degree. Candidates with advanced degrees are required to demonstrate preparedness based on quantitatively oriented coursework or work experience.

The GMAT/GRE waiver is a competitive process and no waiver is automatic. Please reach out to your PMBA recruiter to see if you are competitive for a GMAT/GRE test waiver.

For consideration for a GMAT/GRE test waiver, PMBA candidates must submit a complete PMBA admission application. Using the supplemental essay portion of the application, interested candidates must request the waiver and write a brief essay (200-500 words) highlighting their quantitative experience (professional or academic) and notable professional accomplishments, where compelling facts may include number of direct reports, budget figures and major projects managed, facility oversight, sales success, cost savings produced and organizational problems solved.

Two professional letters of recommendation are required for the admission review. Recommendations should be written by current or former managers/directors, colleagues with MBA degrees, senior leaders in organizations that you have worked with, or customers and clients. Some items to address in the recommendation include performance (current or prior), industry knowledge, ability to work with teams, project management skills and leadership potential.

Applicants are required to submit three essays for admission consideration. The statement of purpose essay provides insight into why an MBA degree is important to his/her career.  Of the four essay questions provided in the application, the applicant must choose two and write an essay of 250 words minimum. 

If your undergraduate academic GPA is less than a 2.75, please address that in a separate optional essay.

International applicants who do not hold a degree from a United States institution must also submit a valid (no more than two years old) test score demonstrating their command of the English language. The minimum score for the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) is 95 (internet-based). The TOEFL institutional code for the Darla Moore School of Business is 5818. The minimum score for the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) is 7.0. Please make sure you select the University of South Carolina as a score recipient when taking the test. Some applicants may qualify for a TOEFL exemption. Contact a PMBA recruiter today to learn more.

Access the online application.

In cases where the application fee presents a financial hardship for an applicant, the Moore School will consider a request for a fee refund. Apply for an application fee refund.

If you have questions regarding the PMBA program or your application, please reach out to a PMBA recruiter.

  • Applicants in the Charlotte, Greenville or Spartanburg areas should reach out to Melissa Nagle.
  • Applicants in the Aiken/Augusta, Bluffton, Charleston, Columbia and Parris Island areas should reach out to Kathy Rollins.

Admission Decisions

The PMBA program evaluates applications as they are completed, and admission decisions are made on a rolling basis rather than at specific points in the application cycle. All required application materials must be submitted before an admission decision can be made.

Entry Term Application Deadline
Spring 2021 (January) Priority: Oct. 1, 20201 
  Final: Dec. 1, 20202
Fall 2021 (August) Priority: April 1, 20211
  Final: July 15, 20212

1 Applicants who apply by the priority deadline will receive primary consideration for GMAT/GRE waivers.

Applications submitted after the final deadline for each entry term will be processed on a case by case basis. Please contact the PMBA recruiting team if you wish you apply after the last deadline.


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