Source Newsroom: DePaul University
DePaul University will hold its first-ever graduation outside the Chicago area on December 19 when the Reverend John P. Minogue, C.M., university president, presents MBA degree diplomas to 18 employees of the International Bank of Asia (IBA) in Hong Kong. The employees represent the first class to graduate from DePaul's in-house MBA program offered at the bank. DePaul's Kellstadt Graduate School of Business launched the program in 1997.
"These graduates are leaders in the bank, with three top officers among them," said Ronald Patten, dean of the College of Commerce, which includes Kellstadt. "They are the future financial leaders of Hong Kong and will carry the benefits of their DePaul education with them."
"This is a unique and innovative concept that deserves to be imitated by our peers," noted Mike Murad, vice chairman and chief executive officer of IBA. "Providing high quality education to our staff members requires a great leap of faith on the part of the management of the bank and by this pioneering group of students. We take great pride in their achievement and hope that the benefits of the wisdom that has been bestowed on them can manifest itself in their future performance."
Vincent Lo, chairman of Shui On Group, will be the commencement speaker, and Steven Poon, managing director of Bright World Enterprise Ltd., will speak on behalf of the IBA Board of Directors.
According to Dean Patten and Roger Baran, associate professor of marketing and director of DePaul's Asian business programs, the Hong Kong initiative has proved beneficial to all involved.
"Bank officials tell us there has been a tremendous improvement in the confidence and abilities of their employees," Baran said. "Those in the program are more aggressively attacking challenging bank assignments and projects."
Through teaching stints in Hong Kong, 14 DePaul professors have gained firsthand experience with the region's people and its markets valuable knowledge that they bring back and share with students in Chicago classrooms.
In fact, Adnan Almaney, professor of management, will be in Asia prior to graduation to write case studies based on actual business events in the region. The cases will be used to provide more familiar study examples to IBA students. They will also be used by DePaul MBA students in Chicago to gain a clearer picture of the Asian market.
The cooperative effort bodes well for the future. Admission of a second class of MBA students is being finalized. They will begin their two-year MBA quest in January in expanded space at the bank. IBA recently dedicated an entire floor as an auditorium, faculty office and a research library. The plan of the redesigned space is based on technology-equipped facilities used by DePaul business professors and students in the DePaul Center in downtown Chicago.
"The new auditorium is another sign of the commitment by IBA's management to this program," Murad said. "This is an ongoing program, and these new facilities will provide future MBA graduates all the necessary tools needed to complete their studies."
Looking toward a longer-term future, Patten said: "DePaul's committed presence and demonstrated academic credibility position us well to eventually offer courses in China, which is an enormous market." In a fall cover story about the growth of Western MBA programs in China published by the International Association For Management Education's magazine Newsline, Lu Fuyuan, China's vice minister of education, said that Chinese experts predict they will need as many as 1.4 million MBAs in the next decade. China is looking to the U.S., Europe and Canada to help meet the demand, he told the association.
International business has been a major focus for the College of Commerce since 1962, when it added an international business concentration to its MBA program. Today, global business is an important part of the university's nationally ranked part-time MBA program and it is the main focus of its full-time MBA in International Marketing and Finance program launched in 1994.
University officials planning to attend the commencement include: Patten; Baran; Ambassador John Kordek, DePaul associate vice president for External Affairs, who will enroll the graduates in the alumni association; Richard Meister, executive vice president for Academic Affairs; Susanne Dumbleton, dean of the School for New Learning, which has recently begun to offer a bachelor's degree program at the IBA; Geoffrey Hirt, professor of finance, who will be just completing a teaching assignment at IBA and is the former director of the Hong Kong MBA program; Robert Peters, College of Commerce associate dean; and Almaney.
Contact: Robin Florzak, (312) 362-8592 or firstname.lastname@example.org