In a week’s time, I will be congratulating almost 500 students on receiving their MBA degrees in Singapore and Fontainebleau. It’s always a special day for the students, faculty and administration, and this time around, particularly poignant for me as I bid farewell to the Deanship. It’s been an exciting, stimulating and intense three years for me personally, much like that of the MBA experience for our students.
Our programme has changed over the past few years, and together with the faculty and administration, we have achieved some important milestones:
– Introduction of new relevant electives to the curricula, including subjects that address the post-financial crisis environment, social media strategy, emerging markets, and study tours to Asia, Latin America and the U.S.
– Launch of two partnerships that promote students studying business and international affairs and public policy – the dual degree MBA/MA degree programme with The Johns Hopkins University Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) and continuation pathway between INSEAD and the Lee Kuan Yew (LKY) School of Public Policy.
– Expansion of our student exchange opportunities to the U.S. to include the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. This new exchange option exists alongside the long-standing relationship with Wharton.
– Excellent standing in the rankings. This past year, we were proud to see the INSEAD MBA programme ranked number #1 in the international MBA category by Bloomberg Businessweek, and in the top 5 for the Financial Times 2011 global rankings of business schools for a third consecutive year.
– Strong employment statistics for our recent classes. 2010 was the year of all records, with 93% reporting employment within the first three months of graduation (highest percentage since the 1990s) and students joining companies in 68 countries, 7 more than in the previous year.
– Greater diversity in the class – we continue to see the student body grow more diverse in terms of nationalities (86 represented in 2011) with improved gender representation (33% for 2011) which makes for a richer and vibrant experience for all of our students.
Of course with these successes, there have been the expected challenges of managing one of the largest, most global MBA programmes in the world. Nonetheless, it has been a true pleasure to head the MBA programme for the past three years. I look forward now to returning to my faculty role on a full-time basis and meeting the incoming students as a professor.
In the meantime, congratulations to the July 2011 class!