Philippines’ Top 5 MBA Programs for Surefire Promotion

When I was in the workforce, I felt that waiting for promotion with just my work performance will be a long arduous process. an MBA or Masters in Business Administration Education from a reputable business school shortens the climb from a typical employee to a CEO.

Getting a Master’s Degree is difficult. Just reading on the application process of MBA programs makes anyone fear it.

A Master’s Degree in Business Administration separates an average employee from an exceptional one since you can show people that you can accomplish this very difficult task. Not anyone has an MBA degree, it adds up to anyone’s credentials.

An MBA degree provides a premium on most performance management systems of companies. It builds more points for promotion and makes you more valuable. Imagine, if you are competing with colleagues with the same achievement, an MBA could separate you from them.

What is the Master’s Degree in Business Administration?

The Master’s Degree in Business Administration or commonly known as MBA is a graduate degree program that teaches advanced management principles techniques and tools. Expect to be an expert in management and the functions of business namely Financial Management, Operations Management, Marketing Management, and Strategic Management.

The core courses in a typical MBA program are basic functions in a business which are Finance, Operations, Marketing. Elective courses are specialization within those core courses. Some of the elective courses in an MBA program are Information Systems, Innovation Management, Brand Strategy, Risk Management, Corporate Restructuring, Entrepreneurship, E-Commerce, Decision Science, Managerial Economics, Management Accounting, Organizational Behavior, Portfolio Management, International Business Strategy, Services Marketing, Mergers & Acquisitions, Human Resources Management, Business Analytics, Behavioral Sciences, Management Control Systems, Global Marketing, Social Entrepreneurship, and Impact Investing, etc.

The degree is taught by typical lectures and case studies to dissect how to apply principles in real-life scenarios. If you hate presenting and speaking in front of people, you’ll start to love them if you will take will be in an MBA program. When you graduate, you’ll be an expert in no time.

The MBA program trains individuals from a typical employee into middle managers and even CEOs. There are one-size-fits-all MBA programs such as at the University of the Philippines. There also MBA programs for middle managers, executives, and CEOs such as at Asian Institute of Management and Ateneo de Manila University.

My Experience Taking up MBA

mba graduation

I took my MBA degree last 2012. I applied, took the UP MBA GPAT and the UP MBA Proficiency Exam. I even entered the MBA workshop or bridge program to prepare me for the actual schooling. After a few months of waiting, I was eventually admitted to the UP MBA program at the University of the Philippines.

I got my MBA degree in 2015. I was just Associate back then. A year later after finishing my graduate studies, I became a middle manager. Today, I am now an Executive. This ascension is partly due to my MBA degree but most importantly due to the learning, I applied in my work.

With the degree, I got to teach at a Master’s Program also in the University of the Philippines. A lot of my achievement where partly due to my MBA.

What I miss most about the program are the late-night case study meetings with professionals and executives from a diverse set of industries ranging from manufacturing, education, healthcare, services, technology, properties, and SME entrepreneurs. A lot of friendships and networks were forged during this MBA program. In fact, I still consult with them about critical issues where I need a fresh perspective from a different point of view.

We debated and even fought on critical issues on cases assigned to us. Back then, I thought these were inconveniences but I realized that this is part of the case study method. In the real world, you will encounter opposition from proposals and reports you’ll present to the Board of Directors or even just towards your superior.

In hindsight, the ultimate learning from the theories lectured at classes were complemented by the out-of-the-classroom discussions. The scolding from professors was a preparation for the true backlash in the board room.

The MBA program really prepares you to ascend on the corporate ladder.

Hot to Pick an MBA program

There is a study of the factors in determining the success of graduate students. While this study is conducted outside the Philippines, the results corroborate my personal experience in taking an MBA. The list of the significant factors that contribute to the success of an MBA student are:

  1. Increased self-esteem due to success in graduate studies
  2. professors interested in student’s academic success; and
  3. affordable tuition fees

Among the 3 factors, the 1st one resonate more for me. On the other hand, the 2nd seems not to apply for me. Obviously, affordable tuition fee is a good determinant of one shall continue but I think it is not a determinant of the success or whether one will complete an MBA or not.

A revelation for me when I took an MBA program is the importance of the proximity between a student’s address or work to the chosen business school. During my time in the MBA program, a lot of students did not finish the degree not due to their incompetence or tuition but the travel experience. In fact, this finding is corroborated by a dissertation at the University of the Philippines. It claims that travel is the most important factor in determining if a student will finish their MBA studies.

When choosing an MBA program, pick the one near you.

You may want to get into a top MBA school but if can’t finish the program, it won’t matter.

Top 5 MBA Programs and Business Schools in the Philippines

Philippines’ top MBA schools can surely help every professional climb the corporate ladder. It can make or break a career. The Universities in the Philippines that offer MBA programs follow international standards in providing quality business education. These schools also employ professionals who are highly qualified in their field.

Here is the top MBA program in the Philippines:

Asian Institute of Management (AIM)

AIM is an international management school that pioneers in graduate education. It’s a member of the European Quality Improvement Systems (EQUIS) and also one of the few business schools in Asia accredited with the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business or AACSB.

AIM also ranked 29th out of 100 Most Popular Business Schools in 2020 according to and ranked 1 under the Best Executive MBA category of Asiaweek.

AIM has also ranked the best MBA program according to the Business School Ranking of the EduUniversal. While the top MBA programs in the Philippines offer the same track of core subjects, electives and case studies, what separates the MBA program in AIM is the international exposure of students within AIM Asia. Students shall be required to go to foreign AIM campuses in order to learn about different cultures and business practices.

AIM offers both MBA programs as well as Executive MBA (EMBA) Evening program. MBA Students may also opt for the general management track or major in one of the following areas: Finance, Marketing, and Entrepreneurship. For more detailed information regarding these programs and their requirements, students may refer to their website. For admission inquiries, go to their admission page by clicking here.

University of the Philippines – Diliman (UP)

The College of Business Administration of the University of the Philippines Diliman was established in 1916 and is the oldest university to offer MBA programs and has been the leader in management education in the Philippines. The University of the Philippines is ranked 3rd business school by the Eduniversal under the 3 Palmes of Excellence – Excellent Business School with Reinforcing Internation Influence with 99% dean recommendation rate.

The University of the Philippines is the best university in the Philippines as ranked by the QS World University Ranking. University of ranked 401-500 in the World University Ranking 2020 and 95th in the Asia University Rankings.

It has been ranked number 39th out of 100 Most Popular Business Schools in 2020 by and ranked number 48 in Asia by Reputation in CNN Asiaweek report. UP Virata School of Business is regarded as one of the Philippines’ top MBA schools by business professionals.

The school offers MBA programs that are practitioner-oriented and categorized into Full-Time and Part-Time which students can complete either in 2 years or 3 and a half years. The part-time MBA program is housed at the UP Bonifacio Global City

For admission inquiries, go to their admission page by clicking here.

Ateneo Graduate School of Business (AGSB)

AGSB is the graduate school for business of Ateneo De Manila University and has six campuses in the country.

It is one of the top business schools in the Philippines and has been ranked No. 1 with an average rating of 4.6 out of a perfect score of 5.0 based on a comprehensive study of 199 MBA programs in the country by the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) and the Fund for Assistance to Private Education (FAPE).

It is also ranked 63 out of 100 Most Popular Business Schools in 2020 by The Ateneo Graduate School of Business is ranked 2nd business school by the Eduniversal under the 3 Palmes of Excellence – Excellent Business School with Reinforcing Internation Influence with 108% dean recommendation rate. AGSB is also ranked 73 university by Asiaweek in 2000.

The MBA Standard Program of AGSB is designed for young adult practitioners who wish to upgrade their knowledge and skills while the Middle Manager MBA program is designed for senior managers and staff members who occupy a supervisory and managerial position in their organizations. The MBA Program of AGSB has produced many CEOs and students that started their business.

For more detailed information regarding these programs and their requirements, you can visit their website at

De La Salle University – Manila (DLSU)

DLSU ranked in the 100 Most Popular Business Schools in 2020 by and its MBA program has been ranked among the top 20 part-time MBA programs in Asia. The Ramon V Del Rosario School of Business is ranked 1st business school by the Eduniversal under the 3 Palmes of Excellence – Excellent Business School with Reinforcing Internation Influence with 123% dean recommendation rate.

De La Salle University is the other university ranked worldwide by the University of ranked 1000+ in the World University Ranking 2020 and 251-300 in the Asia University Rankings.

Students who opt to enroll in their MBA program may major in any of the following areas: agribusiness, business and governance, business law, business management, culture and arts management, finance, human resource management, information technology, international business, marketing, operations management, property management, sports and recreation management, and supply chain management.

For more information on the curriculum and the program’s requirements, you may visit this link.

University of Santo Tomas (UST)

University of Santo Tomas offers several Master’s Degree Program including the Masters in Business Administration. They are ranked 7th among all Philippine Business Schools in 2020 according to The Ramon V Del Rosario School of Business is ranked 1st business school by the Eduniversal under the 3 Palmes of Excellence – Excellent Business School with Strong Regional Influence with 34% dean recommendation rate.

UST offers its Full-Time MBA program in a 21-month period where students gain a competitive edge by polishing the communication, leadership and ethical skills that are highly valued by corporate recruiters. For more details about their MBA program, you can download the specifics in the curriculum here.

Notable MBA Programs And Business Schools In The Philippines

University of San Carlos (USC)

The University of San Carlos located in Cebu offers both EMBA and MBA. MBA was also the first master’s program to be offered by USC as part of the College of Commerce.

The University of San Carlos is ranked 1st business school by the Eduniversal under the 3 Palmes of Excellence – Excellent Business School with Considerable Local Influence with 59% dean recommendation rate. Adventist Internation Institute of Advanced Studies is also ranked 10th among all Philippine Business Schools in 2020 according to

The duration of their MBA program is 3 years and requires a research paper. However, a student is given a total of 5 years to complete the program, otherwise, he/she will receive a Certificate in Graduate Business Studies and be removed from the program. You can refer to this link for information about requirements and fees.

Adventist International Institute of Advanced Studies (AIIS)

AIIS was established by Seventh-Day Adventist Church and is part of the world’s second-largest education system, the Seventh-Day educational system, which focuses on holistic education. They are also one of the few that offer their MBA program online.

Adventist Internation Institute of Advanced Studies is also ranked 8th among all Philippine Business Schools in 2020 according to

AIIS offers the MBA program with emphases in Business Management, Finance, and Information Technology in a 43-46-semester hour program. Aside from being online, their MBA program is also offered on both their main and DLC campuses where the former schedules for Full-time programs and the DLC’s schedule for Part-time. You can view their detailed program, curriculum, and requirements here.

University of the East (UE)

University of the East is among the 100 Most Popular Business Schools in 2020 with a rank of number 100. UE’s MBA program majors in entrepreneurship, financial management, marketing management, and operations management. University of the East also ranked 5th among all Philippine Business Schools in 2020 according to

The MBA program offered can be taken with a thesis or with non-thesis and has a duration of two years. For more information about their program and requirements, you can refer to their website here.

University of San Agustin (USA)

University of San Agustin is a catholic school in the city of Iloilo and an active member of several associations such as the Association of Catholic Universities in the Philippines (ACUP).

Its graduate school offers a number of graduate degree programs including MBA which has two programs; one with a Thesis and another with a Seminar Paper. Their MBA focuses on human resources, and products and services. The program is given a duration of two years.

Southville International School

This business school is ranked 9th among all Philippine Business Schools in 2020 according to

For more information visit here

Silliman University

If you not in the National Capital Region and you need quality MBA, Silliman University in the Visayas region specifically Negros Oriental that offers an MBA program.

To check their MBA Program Curriculum, click this link

Benefits of an MBA Graduate

This wouldn’t talk about the MBA Degree benefits as written in most MBA related articles on the web. If you are looking for MBA Degree benefits such as professional advancement, career security, and broader professional network, this article isn’t what you’re looking for. This article is about the never-talked-about MBA Degree benefits  – the untold benefits of getting an MBA degree that is.

Sleeping Benefits

Previously had difficulty sleeping?

Insomnia? Fear not! MBA is the answer.

MBA bombards you with piles and piles of materials for reading. Just by reading the assigned resources, sleeping will be a breeze especially when the assigned articles/books are as boring as hell. I myself had problems making sleep at night. “Thanks” to my MBA gig, my sleeping troubles are now in the distant past.

At night time, I’ll just pop-up our assigned reading and.. BOOM! I’ll be asleep right on the second to the third page of whatever I am holding.

No Overtimes

Being in a part-time MBA program means that you’ll come to class from 6:30PM to 9:30 PM weekly, from Tuesdays to Fridays. When your boss tells you “I’ll authorize, take overtime”. You can confidently say “I can’t boss, I have MBA classes to attend to”.

The downfall is that you need to finish your job on your regular office hours, or else, you’ll risk your 8-5 work and you’ll have all the time to be a full-time MBA student!

Forced Diet

Your usual dinner around 7:00 PM – 9:00 PM will no longer be possible (unless bringing your dinner in class).  

More so if you’ll be traveling far from the school. The rush-hour traffic means you can’t utilize the 5:00 PM – 6:30 PM free time to eat dinner – if time permits, a quick snack maybe.

For the first term (trimester) of your MBA program, be ready for a weight drop!

As you continue the MBA journey, your body will surely adapt to its rigorous time-consuming requirements. Expect to gain back that lost weight. In my case, my weight even got heavier! So if you’ll happy with the initial weight drop from the forced diet, be sure to maintain it with proper exercise and the right diet (difficult!).

Excuse for Everything

One friend invited me to his birthday.

I have absolutely no intentions in going but I don’t have a good alibi.

What I said, “I’ll study for my MBA Program”.


Another friend invited me to a christening event of her daughter. I replied, “I need to catch up on my MBA Readings”. 


was forced to go to the province but I am stressed to go (long drive). My excuse, “I’m stressed from my MBA program”. YEAH, EXCUSED! Next time you ran out of reasons (if you’re on the MBA program) use the magic words…

For sure, it worked for me.

Chuck Norris Effect

One sure thing when you are in your MBA program what you say is taken as absolute truth.

The funny thing is: its validity and believability sometimes are just backed up by your inclusion in the Masteral Program or the title as a Master in Business Administration.

People will think that it is an expert opinion and your advice will be highly valued.  Surprisingly, kidding up some statements sometimes can be taken as correct statements, which I found very interesting.

This is the CHUCK NORRIS EFFECT. When Chuck Norris talks, everybody listens (but won’t die as a many meme says)

This is the gift of being in an MBA program – Credibility, Reliability, Knowledge, and Wisdom LEVELS UP.

One of the taken-for-granted MBA Degree Benefits.

38 thoughts on “Philippines’ Top 5 MBA Programs for Surefire Promotion”

    1. Which schools offers saturday classes except USC because I am in Manila and I also know that they offer saturday classes on MBA.

  1. Hi, does an applicant with no corporate experience be admitted to the MBA program? I have a masters in Engineering and would like to get an MBA before I enter the industry. Much support and appreciation for this very helpful blog :)

    1. I think they need corporate experience. You might have some experience that they can consider. Try using your previous masters as one. I’m not sure if they’ll honor that

  2. Hi which schools offer online MBA in the Philippines?
    Currently I am based and working overseas and would like to study online on a part-time basis.
    Thanks in advance for your help!

    1. I’m not sure of schools who offer MBA via distance learning medium. Thou you can check University of the Philippines Open University for undergraduate and masters degrees given in a full distance learning medium.

  3. hi, I want to ask what school offers Sunday class? I want to take MBA for i am available only every Sunday.
    Thanks in advance :)

  4. Hi! I just want to know what schools here in Metro Manila offers Master in Marketing Management? Specifically weekend Class. Thanks in Advance.

  5. Does it need to be currently teaching in school or at least you had 2 years experience in teaching before? I have a job now but in a different industry and I’m planning take up MBA in one of these universities, hopefully. Thanks in advance.

  6. Will it be a problem if my overall working experience is more than 2 years but with different companies?
    (Company A – 11 months, Company B – 8 months, Company C – currently 5months)

    1. These are the schools I know that would give a good MBA education. As far as the other, I don’t really have information on them. Hence, they are not included in the list.

  7. hi, can you please email me a copy of your GPAT reviewer? I’m having difficulties downloading them from my computer. Thank you for all the helpful info.

  8. Hello,

    Can you help me to differentiate the DLSU-M vs DLSU-D , MBA program? Does campus matter to employers? Although they have the same curriculum and approach, there’s still a competition between these two campuses but they’re using the same name brand. Would you recommend the taft campus versus dasmarinas?.

    THanks in advance.

  9. Hi sir, I’m planning to take MBA preferably in UP. :) But is it okay if my undergrad course was not from UP?

  10. Jefferson Sejalvo

    Hi. As I checked with the school’s website, there are different exams for the admission test which are VSB’s graduate entrance examination, GPAT, or a the following alternative tests: GRE, GMAT, NMAT by GMAC. What are the differences of this? Why will they offer alternative tests? Is it because of the level of difficulty? Thank you and I am looking forward for your answer.

  11. Hi Sir, do the University of the Philippines – Diliman (UP) and the University of the Philippines Open University differ? when you recommend UP-D does it include UP-Open University as well? thank you.

    1. They differ because they are different universities under the UP System. UP Diliman is the traditional UP where classes are held physically at QC. In UPOU, everything is delivered online.

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