GMCA Program Requirements

GMCA students collaborate in the library.

As a response to the acute need for leaders who are comfortable doing business and communicating internationally, the GMCA program stresses a team-based approach to marketing communication. At Emerson, you will share a classroom experience—including case studies and simulations—with students hailing from across the United States and around the world. Imagine being able to talk about the future of world markets with a student from Taiwan, the customer-support-outsourcing phenomenon with a classmate from India, or European perceptions of the United States with a student from France.

Courses & Case Studies

The GMCA program is a one-year, full-time program in which all students move through a sequence of courses together as a cohort. Accredited by the International Advertising Association, the GMCA program immerses you in the global implications of marketing communication. Through the integration of advertising, public relations, branding, and direct marketing, you will explore cultural value systems that provide insight into the impact of cultural differences on decision making, verbal and nonverbal communication styles, and organizational structure. You will gain a comprehensive and invaluable understanding of the global economic environment, global partnerships, and cooperative global strategies.

You will learn how to develop consistent messages, consider the audience/consumer, think strategically, and conduct research and analysis, all within a cross-cultural framework. Building upon a foundation in the theories of global marketing communication, you will learn how to integrate an organization’s promotional vehicle — advertising, public relations, publicity, sales promotion, and direct and interactive marketing. In addition, you will become adequately prepared to discuss the financial and strategic context of global marketing planning in the workforce, as well as the challenge of branding in a worldwide context.

The Global Capstone

The team-based approach culminates in a two-week capstone class during which you will experience the process of an actual campaign pitch. By integrating what you have learned in previous coursework, you design and present a global marketing communication plan for an organization. Working in teams on assignments from real clients, you conduct research and analysis, study the market share, consider the audience and the mission, and develop a strategy. 

Recent capstones include: 

  • Mercedes-Benz Germany Brand Design System
    Development of a worldwide communication strategy for the Brand Design System, an intranet-based system designed to help strengthen the global Mercedes-Benz brand image by implementing guidelines to unify the brand’s universal messages, ensuring a cohesive and unique brand appearances across all communities. 
  • IcelandAir USA
    Development of a communication strategy for promoting both IcelandAir and the country of Iceland. The key objective was to attract new customers and increase the number of U.S. passengers/travelers during the fall season, which is traditionally less busy than the summer. 
  • DDB NY/Subaru USA
    Development of a marketing and communication strategy to reposition the brand and increase sales for Subaru in Los Angeles/Southern California 

Culminating Experience: Internship

As the final step of the program, you will complete an internship at an organization anywhere in the world. Taking with you all that you have studied and learned, the internship is your opportunity to draw on real-world experience, classroom exercise, and your capstone.

Learn more about our program's alumni and our industry connections »


Thomas Vogel

GMCA program director Thomas Vogel explains how GMCA graduates are putting their degrees to good use. Watch the video »