Change your approach in choosing MBA schools
Canada’s Schulich offers top-tier business education for half price
By Kim Jae-kyoung
Canada’s Schulich School of Business at York University is not well known among Korean professionals. It is not because its global ranking is low and its curriculum is bad but because it is located in Canada. Most Korean MBA candidates are interested in top U.S. schools.
When many professionals, particularly Koreans, choose an MBA school, the most important criteria are global rankings and post-graduation salaries. The curriculum and alumni networks are secondary.
According to Dezso J. Horvath, dean of Schulich, Canada’s leading business school, it is time for MBA candidates to change their approach in selecting business schools as the world has changed over the past decade, calling for different elements and requirements in business than in the past.
Good business schools in the global environment in Horvath’s words should not only ensure good salaries after graduation but also help their students get a “global reach” and “diverse perspectives” through their programs.
“If you look at the economies of the world, they have been integrated at a rapid pace. I thought that I knew global environments but I have to admit the world is more integrated globally than I ever imagined,” Horvath said at an interview with Business Focus at the Plaza Hotel in Seoul on July 6.
“There is no room for anybody to hide anymore. There is nobody who is too large to be isolated, even the United States and China. Now governments can’t control economies independently.”
He stressed that MBA candidates should look for programs that can help them learn about the new global environment in class, paving the way to a global career and develop international business expertise.
The ongoing global transformation is behind Horvath’s strong belief that Schulich is going to be more in demand than most other schools. In terms of global orientation, Schulich is one of the top business schools in the world.
Over 55 percent of its students and 65 percent of its faculty come from over 30 countries. The school has 86 alumni chapters in 62 countries, as well as Schulich satellite centers in China, India, Russia and South Korea.
According to Horvath, given the global environment and the limited home market, Canadian business schools had no option but to go global.
“In terms of international orientation, Schulich is a unique destination. That’s why we have been doing great over the past few years. We are trying hard in emerging economies and starting to discuss launching a representative office in Korea. You don’t find more globally-orientated schools anywhere.”
The school ranked 10 in the global MBA ranking, according to The Economist, the U.K-based economic weekly, making it the only Canadian school to make the top 50. It also ranked 6th among non-U.S. schools, in Forbe’s 2009 Best Business Schools ranking.
Its latest move to expand the global network will come in India. The school is breaking ground this month on a new campus in Hyderabad. The campus is expected to open for classes in the fall of 2013.
Horvath, who has been on an Asian tour to recruit global talent, said that at its launch, the campus will host 120 MBA students. He also plans to add an executive MBA and other programs later.
“A good business school with global orientation has a lot of different nationalities but no culture should dominate it. We have an Indian school but it is not an Indian school in India. It is the Schulich global school located in India. We will recruit up to 40 percent not coming from India,” he said.
In addition, there are a number of interesting initiatives Shulich is currently engaged in, including a partnership with the World Bank to create a global financial sustainability program to train financial supervisors from across the world.
The school is well known for its business sustainability programs. It was named the greenest MBA program by taking the top spot in the 2009-2010 Beyond Grey Pinstripes rankings, a biennial survey and popular alternative yardstick of full-time MBA programs. It received high marks for the extraordinary number of courses available to students that contain environmental, social and ethical content.
High return on investment (ROI)
What is also special about the Toronto-based business school is the fact that its return on investment (ROI), an important measure for determining the earning power of an MBA degree, is also at the world’s top level.
In 2009, Forbes ranked the school No. 1 in Canada and among the top 10 schools in the world in ROI. It was also ranked No. 3 in the world when it comes to determining how quickly MBA graduates recoup their investment in an MBA degree.
Horvath, who was named Dean of the Year by the Academy of International Business (AIB) in 2004, said that the reason for Shulich’s high ranking on ROI is that despite high-quality programs on offer, its tuition is very low compared to its rivals in the U.S.
Admission and school life
The average profile for MBA class of 2011 are a GMAT score of 660 and five to six years experience, while full-time MBA tuition fees would be $30,000 per year or $60,000 for the entire program, around half the tuition for full-time MBA programs at U.S. schools (over $100,000). It offers 18 specialization options in the second year, including industry-specific ones for finance, healthcare, IT, pharmaceutical, biotech, agribusiness and so on.
Schulich students can apply to study abroad in cities such as Beijing, London, New York, Milan, Paris, Tokyo, Santiago and Sydney at one of Schulich’s academic partner institutions ― 50 of the world’s leading MBA schools in over 30 countries around the globe.
The flexibility of Schulich’s full-time study options allows students to complete an MBA in either 16 or 20 months. Those who have an undergraduate business degree and work experience may also qualify for the eight-month accelerated MBA.