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Why I Chose France Over The US For My MBA

Chinese MBA, Jun Shen, landed a job in France after an MBA from EMLYON Business School. He says more Asian students should consider France as an alternative to the US


Mon Sep 17 2018


When Jun Shen began applying to business schools he knew he wanted two things: an MBA program with an international outlook, and the option to gain professional experience after graduating.

Hailing from China, Jun had to make sure that he would be able to remain in his country of choice after graduating from his MBA—and he knew he wouldn’t be able to do that in the US.

Jun is just one of many international students who are focusing their attention away from the US for study, owing to a controversial immigration policy under the current administration, difficulties gaining visas, as well as high tuition fees.

“They make it very hard for foreign students to stay in America after study,” Jun explains. “My plan was to study but most importantly to have professional experience overseas. This was a really important asset for me to take back to Asia, especially China.”

Jun initially considered schools in both Germany and France for his MBA, but turned to Lyon and EMLYON Business School when he received a scholarship to their full-time International MBA program. 

Now, Jun is working at a tech company in Paris—and says he wouldn't have got the position without the MBA.

EMLYON highlights entrepreneurship throughout its program curriculum and was one of the first business schools in the world to set up a research center dedicated to gaining insights into how to be a successful entrepreneur from real-life case studies. Home to 29 of the world's 500 largest companies based in France, Lyon felt like the perfect springboard for Jun's career.

“One of the things that made EMLYON stand out among top international business schools is that they really focus on entrepreneurship,” Jun says.

“They have their own incubation center in the school—you can actually go there and talk to people if you want to start [your] own business.”

Their ‘New Venture’ MBA specialization also allows students to gain practical insights from entrepreneurs on how to succeed in business, and Jun has already seen the benefits of the program in real life.

Jun says it’s the skills he learnt at EMLYON Business School, especially in the New Venture specialization of the MBA, that were important when it came to securing a full-time role after graduating.

“Presentation skills, for example, helped a lot in the [job] interviews I would say,” Jun says.

Aside from the focus on entrepreneurial skills, Jun says that it’s the diversity of the program that really makes it stand out among European MBAs.

In his new role as a senior sales executive at digital agency BeMyApp, Jun works in a diverse team, which includes professionals from Morocco, the Netherlands, America, and Japan. And it’s the international aspect of EMLYON’s MBA which allowed him to quickly integrate into this diverse workforce.

“The people who work at EMLYON, they want to help you to accommodate to a new country—especially at the beginning of the program” Jun adds.

So, now that he’s succeeded in getting a grad job, who would he recommend the MBA at EMLYON Business School to?

Jun says that the program is perfect for students who want to work in France after graduating, and those who are looking for an international environment. 

Indeed, Jun says his favorite personal memory of the program is the connections he’s made.

“I’ve met quite a few people that have become my friends—and not just work friends!”

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