$97,808 Average Starting Salary
80 Average FT MBA Class Size
7% Veteran Enrollment
1965 MBA program founding year
Many military veterans have accelerated their transitions by attending the University of California, Irvine MBA. Click their photos to learn more about why they decided to pursue an MBA, how they chose Merage, and what they’re doing now!
Why an MBA?
After the military I was unsure of what type of career I wanted to pursue. While I did have job offers coming out of the military, I wasn’t sure if they were in the industry or function that I wanted to be in for the rest of my career. After signing up for the American Corporate Partnership and meeting with several mentors to discuss my transition, I settled on an MBA to better inform my transition and maximize my exposure across industries and functions.
The alumni and focus on entrepreneurship really sold me to Merage over the other schools I had received offers from. The type of people recruited to Merage are curated for their collaborative nature and commitment to success. I have been able to reach out to the extensive Merage Alumni network and gain the resources and knowledge that I needed to have an edge over the competition and eventually led to landing an internship at Deloitte. UCI’s Entrepreneurship Center, The Cove at Applied Innovation, has been a tremendous resource for entrepreneurship and I have had the opportunity to become a critical member of a research based biotech startup in the incubator stage of the company’s life cycle. Both of these achievements were something I only imagined I would be able to do while I was in the Marine Corps.
MBA Grad Year: 2019
Military Service: US Marine Corps
Undergraduate University: University of Colorado Boulder
Why an MBA?
The military develops world class leadership skills that are applied in unique and challenging environments that can bring value to any organization. Leaving the Army, I knew that I wanted to transfer these skills in leadership and resilience into the private sector. Pursing an MBA at a top-tier school would allow me to build the necessary business acumen and make lasting connections that would lead to successful civilian career.
I was first drawn to Merage not only for their strong reputation and standing, but for the small class sizes that resembled the tight-knit nature of an Army unit. You get to know all of your classmates and the friendships are lasting. Furthermore, the career center at Merage provided me with a tailored and attentive service. Advisors here foster close working relationships with the students to help navigate the career field and choose the right path. All of this was pivotal in me making the transition from military leader to civilian leader.
MBA Grad Year:: 2016
Military Service: US Army
Undergraduate University: University of Pittsburgh
Why an MBA?
I separated from the military because I achieved a lot of my military goals and I wanted to establish a new set of goals to accomplish upon my military separation. A MBA was the first step for me. I felt that the military trained and prepared me for leadership, accountability, dependability, and teamwork. I needed an MBA to develop me professionally with business acumen, networking, technical skills, resume writing, and interview preparation. I wanted to enter a new industry and a MBA would connect my military experience to civilian life. A MBA was needed to propel me to achieve my goals and help market myself to the business world.
I chose Merage because Merage has a strong outreach program to recruit and assist Veterans. The UCI Veterans Service Center was extremely helpful with assisting me on the Post 9/11 GI Bill forms before I even started my education. Merage waived my application fee and they respected and appreciated my service. The school holds an appreciation dinner in the spring for Veterans and the chancellor addressed the Veterans and said kind and respectful comments to the audience. This is a business school where leadership and character are highlighted and Veterans are used as a strong example to share life experiences to benefit the development of others in the classroom. I knew Merage would provide me with the skill set to transition to business while refining my leadership skills.
MBA Grad Year: 2015
Military Service: US Air Force
Undergraduate University: University of Portland
Why an MBA?
I chose an MBA as a launch point and transition tool in order to add to the skill set I acquired during my Navy service. I saw the MBA as an opportunity to build a strong foundation of business acumen, financial aptitude, and corporate strategic thinking. I saw the addition of these key skills, coupled with the leadership and military principles, as a strong combination to thrive in the corporate world.
After interviewing with several schools, I felt drawn to Merage because of its strong faculty and small class sizes. The small class sizes reminded me of my time in the military because it created a strong collaborative atmosphere due to the familiarity you had with each student. Additionally, the small class size gave each student the opportunity to participate in as many extra activities as one could handle. The ability to step outside of your comfort zone by taking on leadership roles within the school, participating in case competitions, or joining cultural and functional clubs added tremendous value to the program.
MBA Grad Year: 2016
Military Service: US Navy
Undergraduate University: Thomas Edison State University
9/11 GI Bill Varies Per Person
CalVet College Fee Waiver
Application Fee Waiver $150 Value
Priority for on campus
housing and elective classes
Merit based Scholarship Varies by person
Yellow Ribbon Program