Professional MBA

Voted Best MBA Program in Des Moines – five years running

Professional MBA

Voted Best MBA in Des Moines five years running, our top-ranked MBA program is for professionals like you who want to develop new skills, grow your network, and advance your career.

The professional MBA is a part-time program where students learn from internationally known faculty while honing real-world business skills like strategic thinking and problem-solving. This dynamic program is offered fully online or as a hybrid, with one class each week that meets in person in the Ivy College of Business classroom in Capital Square, 400 Locust Street, Suite 160. This part-time MBA program gives you the full Ivy experience.

The professional MBA program features:

  • Enter the program year-round and take as few as one course a semester or up to three courses a semester
  • specializations in accounting, business analytics, finance, information systems, marketing, leadership, supply chain management, real estate development, accounting analytics, entrepreneurship, and healthcare analytics and operations
  • international study abroad options
  • networking opportunities and team-based learning
  • access to excellent career coaching
  • year-round classes, so you can finish faster
  • The flexibility of taking courses fully-remote or hybrid



$752/credit hour plus fees*

APPLICATION DEADLINE (admission materials submitted in full)

June 15 (fall)
November 15 (spring)
March 15 (summer)


Not required


Hybrid or online


42 credits, 2 years


Des Moines, Iowa

”The Ivy MBA has provided me the skills, network, and confidence to think critically and advocate for those who might be underrepresented at an executive level and throughout the community.”

Brandon Winston
Senior Intake Manager
Mom’s Meals


Average age

Customized Career Advice

Whether you’re angling for a promotion or you want to polish your resume, our career services team offers each student personalized, custom advice and services for your climb up the corporate ladder.  

For professional MBA students, a course focused on professional skills, resume best practices, and how to nail an interview are part of the curriculum. In addition, the career services team provides guest speakers and workshops focused on soft-skill development.  

Explore the Professional MBA

Core courses are offered in an online or hybrid delivery format. Students learn from internationally known faculty while honing real-world business skills like strategic thinking and problem-solving. Make yourself more marketable by adding a specialization.

Scholarships are available for eligible students. Preference will be given to students who work for companies and organizations that don’t offer tuition reimbursement or have limited support.

Apply Today

Professional MBA students can begin any semester and are admitted year-round. Successful applicants have a minimum of two years professional experience.

The following application materials are required:

Please note: Graduate students whose native language is not English and who do not have a degree from Iowa State University, must take the English Placement Test at the beginning for their first semester of enrollment. The test is administered by the Department of English. It must be taken in addition to the Test of English as a Foreign Language), which is taken as a part of the admissions process. A student who does not pass this examination is required to take specific courses in the English 99/101 series. This coursework must be completed no later than the semester BEFORE you graduate.

Not Ready Yet?

If you’re thinking of pulling the trigger but your grades or work experience are holding you back, our pre-MBA program or one of our graduate certificates will help you get ready to apply.

Pre-MBA Program

This option allows you to take up to nine credits of elective MBA courses. Since most of these are three credits per course, the pre-MBA option allows you to take three electives before applying to the MBA program. We recommend that you start with one or two elective courses per session. Please note that pre-MBA students are not eligible to enroll in MBA core courses. Students should consult with the PMBA advisor before registering for classes to ensure the courses apply to the program and to discuss a plan of study.

The pre-MBA option is recommended for candidates that:

  • Are unsure of whether or not they want to enroll in the MBA program, and want to take a few classes beforehand to experience graduate business school with Iowa State University or
  • Have decided to apply for the professional MBA program, but will not have the application complete in time to be offered admission for the next session
  • Have been asked by the MBA admissions committee to take 6-9 credits as a non-degree seeking student prior to full admission consideration

Become a pre-MBA student in two easy steps

All you are required to do is complete two steps:

Step 1: Submit a non-degree graduate student application. This will go to the Graduate College, to admit you as a graduate student at Iowa State University.

Step 2: Once your application has been approved by the Graduate College, review the elective course schedule and submit a Petition to Enroll in the course(s) you are interested in. An up-to-date resume and transcripts will be required. This will be submitted to the Ivy College of Business graduate programs office.

Pre-MBA deadlines are as follows: 

Session Deadline
Spring December 1
Summer April 1
Fall July 1

If you have any questions regarding the pre-MBA program, please contact us at or 515-294-8118.

*Enrolling as pre-MBA student does not guarantee admission into the MBA program.

Graduate Student and Career Services

Charles B. Handy Graduate Programs Office
1420 Gerdin Business Building
Ivy College of Business
2167 Union Drive
Iowa State University
Ames, Iowa 50011-2027

Monday–Thursday: 7:00 am–10:30 pm
Friday: 7:00 am–7:30 pm
Saturday: 7:00 am–4:30 pm
Sunday 11:00 am–10:30 pm

Upcoming Events for Graduate Students


Tony Cookson

March 22, 10:30 am - 12:00 pm

Business Model Canvas Workshop

March 22, 3:05 pm - 5:00 pm

Master of Business Analytics

Ivy Graduate Programs Information Session

March 23, 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm