USC Price School of Public Policy

Executive Master of Leadership

The Executive Master of Leadership (EML) program is uniquely tailored to working professionals who are looking to earn their degree as they continue to progress in their career.

The EML program was developed as a 21st century degree that addresses emerging leadership challenges across the public sector, nonprofit organizations, and private industry. It is specifically designed for executives who have demonstrated leadership capabilities and who want to take their skills to the next level by making lasting contributions in their field, organization, or community.

The program structure offers participants insight into the mechanisms that facilitate effective personal and organizational networks, as well as collaborative problem solving strategies and practices. EML follows a cohort model whereby students enroll in the four required core courses together as a single learning unit or group and build on each other experiences through a degree curriculum that has three distinguishing features:

  • Transformational leadership that connects the public, private, and nonprofit sectors;
  • An interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary problem-solving approach;
  • A design to connect ethics with leadership through core values.

The EML degree emphasizes action-based learning through role playing, self-assessment inventories, game simulations, case studies, in-class exercises and discussions with guest lecturers and with each other that concentrate on the application of leadership objectives that:

  • Examine leadership practices, identify effective influence techniques and motivational methods, and develop reliable communication strategies
  • Increase negotiation competencies and improve conflict management capabilities by moving away from zero-sum approaches
  • Create an understanding of strategic analysis and performance measurement
  • Develop principles and techniques for enhancing organizational learning
  • Assess and evaluate organizational structures and networks
  • Discover mechanisms to connect organizations to their environments
  • Obtain insight and perspective on ethical and legal responsibility, advocacy, and authentic community and stakeholder engagement
  • Examine methods and approaches that political, business, civic, and organizational leaders use to transform their communities, cities and/or regions

Through reflective journals and interactive core class discussions, students are continually exposed to the practice of synthesizing what they have learned and providing feedback on what changes they are making in the course of their leadership journey. The program incorporates long-standing faculty and senior staff experience in designing and delivering leadership and management development programs with leaders over the past thirty-five years. Faculty and guest presenters include innovative thinkers, policymakers, and practitioners who have extensive knowledge in the field as a result of their experience in both the academic and professional settings.