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Triple-track learning offers global outlook

Published on Friday, 28 Sep 2012
Sachin Tipnis


The Faculty of Business and Economics at the University of Hong Kong (HKU) offers both full- and part-time MBA programmes, all taught in English. These programmes have been developed to have a strong relevance to Asia’s dynamic and evolving business environment, and to help students develop a global perspective while focusing on doing business in Asia.

This Eastern outlook has helped contribute to the HKU MBA’s position as the top-ranked MBA programme in Asia.

“We believe that by acquiring up-to-date knowledge, analytical tools and management skills related to these themes, MBA students will be well prepared for their careers as senior executives in Asia,” says Sachin Tipnis, executive director of MBA programmes at HKU.

 “In addition, case-teaching methodology ensures that our students can become effective problem-solvers and decision-makers in rapidly changing business settings.”

The full-time MBA is a nine-year-old programme that consists of an intensive 14-month course offering three streams: a London track with the London Business School, a New York track with the Columbia Business School, and a Hong Kong-China track with Fudan University in Shanghai.

Students on all three tracks start by spending a month in Beijing on a China immersion programme. This is followed by nine months in Hong Kong at HKU, where 11 core courses are studied, plus four or five electives. They then spend a few months in London, New York or Shanghai where they will take four or five electives.

Around 60 full-time MBA students are admitted each year. Tuition fees for 2012-13 are HK$399,000.

 The China immersion programme helps students build language capabilities, better understand a different business system, and expand their networks in the region.

“The course is composed of company visits, executive talks, alumni sharing sessions and cultural activities,” Tipnis says. “Most importantly, the entire group will be together, resulting in better team spirit, communication and networking.”

Chinese language training is a key element for non-Chinese-speaking students. “We collaborate with a renowned language and cultural university in Beijing for four weeks of intensive conversational Putonghua training, along with small tutorial groups and cultural classes,” Tipnis says.

“Students already proficient in Putonghua are expected to participate in a business communications course in Beijing, which includes business case studies, business journal articles, and individual and group presentations under simulated business settings, to teach and develop English language and communications skills.”

Students enrolling in the Hong Kong-mainland China scheme have access to Shanghai-based courses and to the school’s large pool of MBA alumni.

“Other than classroom learning, students are exposed to various aspects of China business through seminars, industry interface, live projects and enrichment workshops,” Tipnis says. “Our full-time MBA students are from all over the world. A significant percentage is from overseas and the mainland, which, combined with local students, produces an exciting and stimulating mix of different professional backgrounds.”

The schools have a Career Development Office that partners with full-time MBA students to help them come up with a career-development strategy. This helps guide them through career exploration, planning and skills training, as well as leverage networks to position themselves for local, regional and international opportunities.

“A wide range of workshops are available with the aim of enhancing students’ skills in terms of interview techniques and writing résumés and cover letters,” Tipnis says. “In addition, various career and networking events are held to maximise exposure to potential employers and the business community.”

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