A message from our Associate Dean of Admissions

Our hearts go out to everyone who may be impacted by the recent spread of COVID-19. Applying to business school is already stressful, so I can sympathize with those of you who are now trying to navigate your future in the midst of so much uncertainty.  On behalf of the admissions team at Fuqua, I want to let you know that in these unprecedented times, our team is still here for you. 


Duke is very fortunate to have world-class healthcare professionals, scholars, and leadership to help with guiding any decisions on the university level. We are taking immediate steps to ensure we do everything possible to minimize the health and safety risks to students, faculty, staff, and the wider community in response to COVID‐19.


As we all try to make sense of this day-to-day, I wanted to address some concerns and questions our office has received to help you navigate during this uncertain time. Below are some of the frequently asked questions we have been getting from prospective and admitted students. If your question is not addressed below, please email the Admissions Team so a member of our staff can help.


Wherever you are in the world, we hope you and your loved ones are healthy and safe. As the situation continues to evolve, we will update this site to provide you with the latest information and resources related to Admissions.



Shari Hubert

Associate Dean, Admissions

Key Information

  • We have made the difficult decision to shift our start dates for the Daytime MBA program to allow as many students as possible join us in Durham given travel restrictions and visa processing delays. Orientation will now start on August 31, 2020 with classes beginning on September 3, 2020. 
  • However, should you not be able to make it to campus for this new start date – we are prepared. Our goal is to offer an option in which individuals can begin the program online, with their classmates who are on campus, and then join everyone in Durham as soon as they are able.
  • Please see the new Daytime MBA Class of 2022 calendar, which has a detailed breakdown of terms, including pre-term activities, some of which is either required or optional.
  • Since many prospective students were unable to take an exam or submit a complete application by the Round 3 deadline, we have added another application round. The new Round 4 application deadline is May 19, 2020. Please visit our website for important information, including interview and decision release dates.

Frequently Asked Questions

Duke University leaders have been monitoring and adapting guidance related to COVID-19. We are very fortunate to have some of the best healthcare professionals in the world guiding our decisions on the university level. Duke took immediate steps to ensure we are doing everything possible to minimize the health and safety risks to students, faculty, staff and the wider community in response to COVID-19. Fuqua is open for business but in different ways than we were operating a few months ago. Our classes have moved to an online format to protect the safety of our students, faculty and staff. Our Career Management Center continues to work virtually with students providing office hours, coaching and supporting their efforts to schedule interviews with employers. Our careers team is also in constant communication with employers. Bottom line: Our goal is to maintain the same level of educational excellence that we have always provided through safe virtual means.

Community means everything to us at Fuqua. During this time though, your safety and the safety of our community is our top priority. With guidance from the University, we have suspended all on-campus activities at Duke's Fuqua School of Business, and have put in place work-related travel restrictions for off-campus events, until further notice. We are continuing to monitor the situation and the University has established an official website with the latest news and information on Duke policies and actions, which will continue to guide our decisions. We are following Duke University’s guidance on social distancing, and our campus is currently closed. All staff and faculty, except for a few members who have been deemed critical to be on campus, are now working remotely. Therefore, you should not travel to campus. We continue to offer virtual opportunities for you to learn more about our programs, and we encourage you to review the list of upcoming virtual events.  We will communicate with the community once campus is reopened.


Despite the disruptions caused by COVD-19, we encourage you to stay connected with our community and us in the following ways:


The Admissions Team is working remotely and continuing to meet virtually to evaluate applications and make decisions. Therefore, the release of your admissions decision will not be impacted or delayed by COVID-19. In addition, we have made some adjustments to the admissions process given some of the challenges applicants have faced with submitting a complete application.


  • We have added a Round 4 application deadline (May 19, 2020). Please visit our website for important information, including interview and decision release dates.
  • Both GMAC and ETS, the administrators of the GMAT and GRE tests, respectively, have virtual options for taking the exams. Please visit the testing agency websites for up to date information (GMAT and GRE). Fuqua accepts both the GMAT and GRE without preference for one test over the other. GMAC is also allowing applicants to reinstate canceled test scores without a fee.
  • Typically GMAT and GRE test scores are valid for five years. During this time, Fuqua will accept test scores for exams taken more than five years ago. To order those score reports to be sent to Fuqua, please contact GMAT or GRE customer service.
  • Additionally, we will accept Executive Assessment (EA) scores as well. If you are taking the EA, please send an email to application-processing@fuqua.duke.edu to let us know so that we may make that option valid on your application.
  • We do require one of these test scores in order for an application to be considered complete and receive an admissions decision. You may submit an application with a future test date, and then provide a score once the test has been taken. If you have difficulty accessing or scheduling a test, please contact the Office of Admissions directly to discuss your unique situation.
  • We will conduct all admissions interviews virtually, even if you selected a specific interview location in your application.

One thing that has not changed during this crisis is our commitment to helping you during the admissions process. If you have any questions or concerns, you are more than welcome to contact us and speak with a member of the admissions team.

We have made the difficult decision to shift our start dates for the Daytime MBA program. Orientation will now start on August 31, 2020 with classes beginning on September 3, 2020.

We know this may cause personal disruption for you and we wanted to let you know right away so that you may begin planning.

We did not make this decision lightly. We have been in close contact with Duke health professionals who are guiding us on the trajectory of the pandemic. We believe this new date gives us the best possibility for our community to be able to start this program together in Durham – given significant travel restrictions, guidance on social distancing and delays in visa processing.

However, should you not be able to make it to campus for this new start date – we are prepared. Our goal is to offer an option in which individuals can begin the program online, with their classmates who are on campus, and then join everyone in Durham as soon as they are able. We have the capabilities to execute on this goal, and have significant experience in delivering high-quality classes in this type of hybrid format. Students who have joined us in this model in other programs have found it to be highly conducive to learning and team engagement.

In the event public health restrictions prevent anyone from being on-campus, the goal would be to start the program fully online, with the intention of moving back on campus as quickly as possible.

We hope that these three options provide sufficient confidence that we are prepared and ready to ensure that all students are able to embark on their MBA journeys this year. Please view the updated Daytime MBA academic calendar here for more details and pre-term activity dates.

Yes, we will work with you if you are unable to collect required documents, such as transcripts or mark sheets, prior to the start of classes. We understand that some universities may not be open at this time, and thus we are willing to work with you in these situations. Please contact the Admissions office to let us know of your specific situation, and we will work with you to ensure that we receive the documents as soon as reasonably possible. We do not expect any discrepancies between unofficial documents submitted with your application and official documents from the institution, but should there be differences, we would need to work with you to address those differences as quickly as possible to ensure consistency with the honor code.

At this time, we do not have plans to change the due dates for tuition deposits. Your student portal will indicate the deposit deadlines to hold your spot in the class. If you have are having extenuating circumstances accessing funds in your home country due to restrictions related to COVID 19, you can always email our Admission department about an extension, and we will review your request.

We are very much aware of your unique challenges and that a growing number of US Embassies and Consulates are putting Visa appointments on hold. We encourage you, however, to continue to submit your paperwork to us as soon as possible, so that we can issue your I-20 and you can explore options for scheduling an appointment at the earliest date possible, either at the embassy in your home country or the nearest one outside your home country. We are making plans for you to still be able to start the program, even if you are delayed in physically getting to Durham.


Below is some advice we have about getting your visa paperwork completed:

  • We strongly urge you not to delay in submitting your visa documentation in your student portal. Our team is working hard to quickly process documents so that your I-20 can be mailed as soon as possible. (for security reasons, the U.S. cannot send I-20s electronically). Note: please do NOT wait for your Re Vera credential verification to complete, as the verification process can sometimes take months.
  • Once you receive your I-20, please schedule your visa interview at the US embassy or consulate in your home country as soon as possible. If that is not possible, you may want to inquire about scheduling an interview at another US embassy or consulate outside your local area that IS scheduling appointments.
  • Through our communication with government agencies, we know that some areas may experience a backlog in requests or wait times that are longer than expected. To ensure that your visa will be processed in time to start the program, we ask you to complete this process as soon as possible.
  • We would also suggest you check daily with the US consulate or embassy in your home country to see if appointments open up and you are able to get an earlier date.
  • We cannot advise you on whether it is better to take the 1st available appointment (even if it is after the start date of the program) or to continue to check for an earlier appointment. The best advice is to speak to someone directly at your nearest US Embassy or Consulate to inquire.
  • In the past, incoming students have reported that checking for cancellations right after midnight, local time, increased the chances for some students for scheduling an interview.
  • Please do your part by submitting your paperwork to us as quickly as possible. This will allow us to do our part in mailing the I-20 to you and put you in a position to schedule a visa appointment as soon as something is available.
  • If you were issued an I-20 prior to the change in in program start date, Duke Visa Services will issue a new I-20 reflecting this updated information. You are not required to notify the U.S. consulate of this change and you will receive your new I-20 within 2 weeks. This update will not change your SEVIS number or affect the I-901 SEVIS fee that you already may have paid. Please be certain when entering the country to begin your program that you present only your new, reissued I-20.

We know many admitted students are anxious about the uncertainty surrounding travel mobility due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Like you, we believe the full experience at Fuqua includes immersive curricular and co-curricular experiences. To best maintain that, we have focused our efforts on both shifting our start date back and creating an engaging environment for virtual interactions.

Moving the start date back provides all of you a greater chance to physically be in Durham when we start classes. In terms of the logistics of the program date shift, we had flexibility in our existing structure which allows us to shift the timing of terms with little curricular and co-curricular impact. Most of the time lost will be recovered by extending the end of the program to late May versus late April, as well as slightly shortening the breaks between terms. As a result, we can maintain our pre-term activities, career development programming, and team development experiences. This also maintains the structure of our co-curricular experiences including club activities, the Distinguished Speaker Series, Fuqua Fridays, and Campout. The timing also ensures that you will be available for employment at a traditional time after graduation.

While we cannot predict what travel mobility will look like in August and September, we are doing all we can to maintain the student experience if there is an online start to the program. At this time we expect to have a face-to-face start but we are also preparing to support a rich student experience for everyone if there is a delay. We are extremely fortunate to have staff, faculty, and students who have already invested in creating and delivering a robust virtual environment for our students as we wrap up this academic year.

If you already received an award notice showing federal student loan offers, you will not have to complete another 2020 – 2021 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).  The Financial Aid Office will update student loan offer(s) and email a revised award notice to you by the beginning of June.  The revised award notice will reflect federal student loan offers based on the updated 2020 – 2021 academic calendar.  The revised academic calendar is shorter by one month, and thus the living expense allocations within your student budget have been prorated by the same. There is no action needed on your part at this time.


If you already applied for, and/or were certified for, private student loans, we will adjust the loan certification amount according to the revised student budget due to the academic calendar change.  You may contact the Financial Aid Office at finaid-info@fuqua.duke.edu or 919-660-8079 with any further questions.

We are considering deferral requests on a case-by-case basis; as we do every year, as everyone’s situation is unique. We can certainly understand your concern about your experience, although we are confident we can provide a meaningful and nuanced MBA experience no matter what the delivery platform. The global situation is of course subject to change between now and the start of the program and we do believe we have solid contingency plans in place if an in-person start is not possible.


If a deferral is granted for other extenuating circumstances, you would still be required to pay your initial two tuition deposit amounts (the first required deposit plus a second deposit of $1,000 on June 15), along with a deferral deposit of $3000 on August 15. Those amounts represent an agreement between you and school that we will not award your seat to another applicant, and that you intend to enroll at Fuqua. The full amount of deposits submitted ($6000) is applied against tuition in the year you enroll, but is non-refundable if you do not enroll.


Regarding scholarship in the event a deferral is granted, we are not able to guarantee that you will receive the same scholarship if you do not enroll in the year admitted. This is not to say that you would not receive scholarship the following year, it means that we cannot guarantee an amount. In other words, the scholarship is not deferred if you receive approval to defer your admissions.


If a deferral is not granted and you choose not to enroll, we will encourage you to reapply next year, and we will help with that process in the following ways:

  • We will maintain your application data from this year and move the information into next year’s system (this must be requested by the student prior to the launch of the new online application or data will be lost).
  • You will not be charged an application fee for the next cycle.
  • If you apply in our Early Action round and are admitted again with next year’s group, any tuition deposits you paid in the past admission cycle up will be applied against your tuition deposit for the next year.

Please note that admission is not guaranteed if you reapply, but your application will be given equal consideration in the new cycle.