Mark Wise is a millennial MBA student who understands business in a global context. He relocated from the US to pursue an MBA at HKUST Business School in Hong Kong. This summer, he interned at the United Nations in Thailand.
Of the 70% of HKUST MBAs who find placement in Asia, around 50% are based outside of Hong Kong. And Mark’s taken advantage of HKUST’s career treks, which open doors to MBA graduate jobs in the growth economies of the Asia-Pacific and the Middle East.
“[The career treks] help prepare for our career post-MBA,” Mark explains. “It’s a direct way of getting to know employers, learn about their businesses, and ask questions you wouldn’t want to ask in an interview.”
On the week-long tours, MBA students immerse themselves in local culture, learn about market trends, and network with senior execs at some of the world’s top firms. The career trek has traditionally taken students to Singapore. This year, HKUST introduced an alternative trek to Dubai.
Mark’s done both. He wants to strengthen his professional ties to the Middle East and, in Dubai, he was able to learn more about the cultural sensitivities of the region, standing him in good stead for his future business career.
“The Dubai career trek has opened up avenues to new employers,” he says. “Nothing short of having gone there and spoken to those prospective employers, would have provided that level of insight into the region.”
This year’s Singapore career trek brought MBA students together with recruiters at tech giants like Google, Apple, Microsoft and Facebook. Some even shortlisted MBAs for job interviews during their stay.
“Walking through the offices of places like Google and Apple, was a memorable experience for everyone,” says Jan-Justus Schmidt, who moved on from a cutting-edge engineering project in Thailand to build his network in Asia and advance his career with an MBA at HKUST.
Jan-Justus has ambitions to get into renewable energy consulting after his MBA. Hong Kong’s strategic economic location, paired with HKUST’s international links to the corporate world, made it an obvious place to study.
And on the Singapore career trek, Jan-Justus visited leading clean-tech consulting firm, DNV GL, gaining valuable insight into what a consultant’s life is really like.
“Right from the beginning of the MBA, HKUST has provided networking opportunities with people relevant to the fields we want to go into,” he says.
“The career trek connects us with employers in Hong Kong, and more internationally as well.”
Mark agrees. Getting noticed by MBA employers can be challenging. The career trek gives MBA students that visibility.
Mark chose HKUST for his MBA in order to gain wider knowledge of global business. He’s already realized this ambition.
“I wanted exposure to China, but I also wanted the ‘East meets West’ experience,” he says. “Now, the whole experience of working in this region of the world has been demystified.”
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