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East meets West in cross-border learning

Published on Friday, 14 Sep 2012
Chris Tsang

MBA/EMBA
HKUST Business School

The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology’s (HKUST) Business School was set up in 1991, when both full- and part-time MBA programmes were launched at the university’s Clearwater Bay campus. A part-time MBA and an international EMBA were added in Shenzhen, in conjunction with Beijing’s Peking University, in 2001.

“We aim at developing our MBA students to their full potential, preparing people to take the next step toward career success,” says Chris Tsang, executive director, MBA/MSc Programs, HKUST Business School.

“We are committed to a vision of transformation via the co-development of knowledge and accountability. As a school uniquely placed in an East-meets-West environment, we seek to advance the frontiers of global business knowledge within a China context and develop responsible business leaders with Asian perspectives for the world.”

Ninety per cent of the students on the full-time programme in Hong Kong are non-locals looking for career development in Asia. All students on the part-time programme in Hong Kong are currently working in the city, while 48 per cent of the current intake are expatriates.

The part-time MBA programme in Shenzhen targets professionals working in Shenzhen or Pearl River Delta communities. Some of the students are from as far away as Changsha and Shanghai. Between 10 and 20 per cent of students are from overseas countries, including Argentina, Colombia, France, Japan, Singapore and the US.

“Student diversity is emphasised and we welcome students from a wide range of backgrounds to join the programme,” Tsang says. “Given the reputation we have built up, we attract international professionals from southern China as well.”

Students have an average of 10 years’ working experience across industries such as manufacturing, marketing, engineering, operations and finance. Between 50 and 60 students enrol each year. There are now about 450 alumni from the part-time Shenzhen programme.

“The HKUST Shenzhen part-time MBA programme was launched in 2002 to cater to the need for the economic development of southern China,” Tsang says. “It provides a world-class business education, with a global perspective, to high-potential executives in the Pearl River Delta. The HKUST Business School has partnered with the Peking University HSBC Business School to leverage its resources and connections in China.”

Applicants should have a strong bachelor’s degree, a satisfactory score on GMAT or HKUST’s own aptitude test, at least three years’ full-time work experience after their first degree, and a good result on TOEFL or IELTS if English was not the language of instruction at the university where they received their first degree.

The design of the Hong Kong and Shenzhen programmes is essentially the same, but some electives are different, reflecting a variation in the interests of students enrolling in Shenzhen. All classes are conducted in English and the programmes share courses and faculties.

“Candidates who are looking for international experience, quality business knowledge and further enhancement in management skills should consider this programme,” Tsang says.

The fact the programme is taught in English also differentiates it from others offered in southern China.

“One of the competitive advantages of this programme is that it was the first and the only one of the world’s top programmes to be offered in the southern China region,” Tsang says.

“Candidates and students also appreciate our unique exchange programme, which allows students to spend a semester or quarter at one of our overseas exchange partner schools.”

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