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What is the Executive Master of Business Administration?

On the SETU Waterford MBA programme, you will develop skills and learn concepts that will accelerate your career, serving you throughout your professional life. The course is about personal accomplishment, new insights and frameworks for thinking, about building stronger skills, expanding horizons, good governance and leadership in a challenging corporate environment.

Our MBA Programme transforms individuals, who in turn go on to transform their organisations. The faculty who deliver on the MBA programme are exceptional research-led academics. This research also focuses on discovering the most powerful ways to train new leaders, and putting those ideas into practice in our curriculum.

SETU Waterford Business School is also an active member of the MBA Association Ireland  and we regularly host events which enhance the learning and professional development of our students. The SETU Waterford Executive MBA group were previous winners of the All-Ireland Strategy Case competition on three separate occasions. Organised by the MBA Association of Ireland, the competition is open to all MBA programmes across Ireland, past winners having included UCD, NUIG, DCU and TU Dublin. 


This programme will be delivered through a blend of lectures and independent study. Students will be required to attend SETU Waterford for one afternoon (Thursday) and evening of lectures and a half day Saturday.

Year 1

Semester 1Semester 2
Leadership & Organisational BehaviourProfessional Development 1
Marketing ManagementOperational Excellence
Managing PeopleAccounting for Managers
 Organisational Change 1**

Year 2

Semester 3Semester 4
International Management*Professional Development 2
Strategic ManagementInfo Systems & Digital Marketing
Innovation & EntrepreneurshipCorporate Finance
Business EconomicsOrganisational Change Research Project
Organisational Change 2** 

*   International Management is delivered as a one week study trip to Boston at the start of year two of the programme

** We do allow multiple entry points to our MBA which means that while semester one is only offered every two Years (September 2021, September 2023, etc), students can enter our MBA at the start of semesters one, two or three. However, students must complete Organisational Change 1 before Organisational Change 2 regardless of the semester in which they join.

There is no single formula for a successful applicant. Candidates are evaluated for their achievements, their potential, and the fit between what they aspire to achieve and what our MBA Program has to offer. If you believe that the EMBA may be right for you, we encourage you to get all the information that you need to apply to our program.  Join us at one of the information events we run throughout the region, or arrange a consultation with the programme director to discuss your interest.

When making an application, we specifically look for:

  • A degree or equivalent. In some cases where managers have exceptional experience (of at least 10 years), an application will be considered
  • Minimum age of 23 years
  • At least three years of relevant professional business experience
  • Satisfactory performance at an admission interview

Applicants whose first language is not English must submit evidence of competency in English, please see SETU Waterford’s English Language Requirements for details.


Programme fee details are available on the Postgraduate Fee Schedule.

How to Apply

Applications for this programme are made online by going to PAC website.

We have recently redesigned our MBA programme so that students can work on action research assignments in their own organisations. Candidates on the programme also participate in a number of professional development workshops and travel to Boston as part of an international study tour at our partner university, Boston University. These interventions have supported our students to take up positions across all types of organisations, from leading technology innovators such as Salesforce to consulting firms and banks such as AIB and State Street Bank. Wherever you want to work, our professional development and networking events help to connect our students to leading organisations in Ireland and overseas.

Some MBA graduates have published their Action Research studies in international journals and others have compiled reports on the work to present to their organisations.

Graduates have also continued their studies and pursued doctoral degrees either with SETU or elsewhere. These students have taken either the Doctorate in Business Administration or pursued the structured PhD programme at our university. 

Whether your goal is to progress within your organisation, take on new responsibilities or pursue and enhance an entrepreneurial route, the programme will give you the knowledge, insights, network and confidence to succeed.

Student Testimonial

“From a personal perspective the idea generation, debates, discussions, and connections created on my MBA journey have enabled me to fulfill personal and academic goals. The sense of achievement on successfully completing my MBA was wonderful!”

Ms Heather Reynolds, Chief People Officer, Scurri, Wexford


“The student and staff engagement on SETU’s Executive MBA exceeded my expectations and the programme has greatly benefited me from a personal and professional viewpoint.”

Dr Paul O’Driscoll, Assistant Commissioner, An Garda Siochana, Dublin


“A key part of the MBA experience for me was the engaging interactions with fellow students which has been a great benefit to me during and beyond the completion of my MBA.”

Ms Claire Phelan, General Manager, UPMC Aut Even Hospital, Kilkenny


“I found the EMBA programme here to be very beneficial – the strong staff-student interactions, the emphasis on teamwork and the focused dissertation - gave me the skills and confidence to deal with a variety of management issues in my organisation”

Mr Tom Healy, Vice President Custody, State Street Bank, Kilkenny


"I found the Executive MBA programme to be a challenging but rewarding experience. The structure of the programme is suitable for executives based in the south east region and the lecturers involved are very supportive. The interactive nature of the course facilitates learning from classmates while also broadening one's professional and social network, and the action research project allows one to apply learning to the workplace in a very practical manner. The international study trip to Boston was also a real highlight and the overall balance between academic material and practice is impressive."  

Mr Mark Rogers, Director of Human Resources, Garrett Motion Ireland, Waterford


“My MBA here was an amazing experience. While I was working at board level within my company for a numbers of years and felt I knew the business well, the MBA thought me many other aspects of running a business that are required for success. I have since being appointed the MD of my company and I can safely say that without my MBA I wouldn’t have achieved that goal. It is an excellent programme run by very experience and professional staff who always made themselves available to the students throughout the course.” 

 Mr John O'Shaughnessy, Managing Director, Clancy Constructon Ltd., Thurles, Tipperary


"I can thoroughly recommend the EMBA programme. I had been looking to do a personal development programme for some time and this proved to be an excellent choice, which embellished and complimented my previous industry experience. The whole faculty were extremely supportive as were my classmates, all of which have now become integral to my professional network. The course itself is a blended approach of academic material and industry practice, which when put together is very engaging. More importantly, my EMBA has proved invaluable in my career since, allowing me to move across industry in a leadership capacity with the confidence and skillset to deliver value adding service to our company and customers alike." 

 Mr. Michael Healy, Strategy and Performance Lead, Senior Leadership Team, AbbVie, Cork


Course Leaders

Dr Tom Egan

Executive MBA Course Director and Lecturer in Business Studies -

Call: +35351302426

Email: [email protected]


Prof Denis Harrington

Head of Department of Graduate Business -

Call: +35351302427

Email: [email protected]