Global Knowledge Through Global Partnership

Five schools ally to offer executive MBA program on four continents

As the inaugural class of OneMBA students travels from around the world to convene in Washington, D.C. this September, a new vision of global education - one created through an international alliance - is being realized.

OneMBA is a global executive MBA program designed to accelerate the global careers of executives by teaching them how to manage, source, sell and compete around the world. Its distinctive format provides intensive exposure to the practice of business around the globe while minimizing the time away from their jobs.

OneMBA was created through an alliance of business schools that transcends - while taking advantage of - national boundaries. The partners that designed and deliver OneMBA are in:

  • Asia - The Chinese University of Hong Kong
  • Europe - Rotterdam School of Management in the Netherlands
  • North America - EGADE-ITESM in Mexico, and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in the United States
  • South America - Fundação Getulio Vargas in Brazil.

The rigorous 21-month program begins in September 2002 when a global class of approximately 100 senior executives from across the OneMBA campuses will meet together in Washington. For the majority of the program, they will study at their home business schools as they continue to work together during additional experiential learning modules and as part of both a home-campus team and three different global teams during the program. Distance learning and virtual team assignments will also keep them engaged throughout the program.

A goal of the OneMBA Program is to be globally relevant and locally sensitive. Professors teach the modules delivered in their own regions, with core courses coordinated across all OneMBA schools. The OneMBA Program consists of three components.

In addition to the Washington, D.C. session, three one-week experiential learning modules are held in Asia, Europe and the Americas. Members of the OneMBA class worldwide come together to study best practices in each region, to form virtual teams and to network. In each module, both developed and emerging markets will be visited and studied, with leading local political and business executives meeting with the OneMBA class to share their perspectives on best business practices in their own country or region. In addition, topics that are either strengths or especially relevant in a region or country will be addressed, including logistics and sustainability in Europe; globalization of finance and cultural marketing in Asia; risk and uncertainty in Brazil; political and economic transformation in Mexico; and knowledge management and entrepreneurship in the United States.

Globally coordinated courses make up the core of the program and occur over a common time period on all OneMBA campuses. These courses are jointly designed by faculty of the partner schools and feature a major assignment in each course for the geographically dispersed virtual teams. Each virtual team consists of students from across the partner campuses. Core courses provide the foundation for the experiential learning modules.

Advanced MBA courses specific to the curriculum of each OneMBA partner school complement the core courses. These specialized regional courses focus on the particular business needs and challenges of executives in that region.

OneMBA is designed for executives with increasing international responsibilities, living and working in each of the schools' regions. The executives will be global managers of multinational companies, as well as managers in regional and national companies that are operating amid the challenges of a changing international environment. The admissions process focuses on executives' potential to be global citizens and leaders. Participants should have seven to 15 years of significant full-time work experience and an undergraduate degree or equivalent. Requirements for admission include GMAT, a comprehensive essay and demonstrated proficiency in English since classes will be taught in English. Each school sets tuition and delivery format based on regional market conditions.

A key benefit of OneMBA is the rich interaction that occurs among the globally diverse groups of executives and faculty. This global network will increase managers' ability to create value not only from the knowledge and regional networks that are created, but also from the in-depth global experience offered through the collaboration of the five partner schools.

Alliances are complex to manage, but the deep partnership created by the five OneMBA schools has substantive benefits because it:

  • creates more global options for both students and professors
  • shares resources and knowledge about course development and research. No single school's faculty dominates the curriculum
  • develops additional scale to jointly tackle complex and rapidly changing global business educational challenges.

The result is a learning experience that is infinitely richer and genuinely international. During this 21-month learning journey around the world of business, students will experience global business education in new and unique ways. OneMBA graduates will be equipped to balance the demands for best local practice with greater global insight, and ready to lead their organizations through the massive change and opportunities created by the emerging global economy.

For more information on OneMBA visit Author: Penny Oslund, Director, OneMBA


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