Newswise — International executives are ready to hit the ground running as the inaugural class of the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay (IIT Bombay) and Washington University in St. Louis joint Executive MBA program.

An intensive residency focusing on leadership and management began April 22 in Mumbai for the inaugural first cohort.

“This is an impressive group of our future business leaders,” said S. Bhargava, PhD, head of IIT Bombay’s Shailesh J. Mehta School of Management. “From information technology to manufacturing to finance, these students will bring a depth of experience from a diverse set of industries to march ahead towards preparing themselves as the global leaders.”

The inaugural class at a glance:

-Approximately 16 average years of professional experience, with 11 years of management experience;-11 industries represented — both India and multinational companies;-Over 40 percent of the class are executives at the senior vice president level and higher; and-Over 50 percent of the class is traveling from outside of the Mumbai area.

“Olin brings more than three decades of experience offering Executive MBA training to this exciting joint program,” said Mahendra R. Gupta, PhD, dean of Olin Business School. “These students will be an important part of our robust international Executive MBA network in India, the United States and China. We look forward to watching this class apply the knowledge they are gaining from this world-class program to their companies in real time.”

After an opening dinner April 21, the EMBA cohort started its residency, which included an in-depth introduction to the program and to fellow classmates; a case discussion on executive leadership; and a four-day strategic management course taught by Lamar Pierce, PhD, associate professor of strategy at Olin. The course lays the foundation for the program to develop leaders who can have a strategic impact in their companies.

A number of companies are taking advantage of this new program by sending key members of their team. “This new program is exactly what Indian enterprises need to take their business to the next level,” said Hari Sankaran, managing director and vice chair of Infrastructure Leasing & Financial Services Limited in India. “High-quality executive training will have a positive impact far beyond the individual student,” Sankaran said.

Washington University EMBA alum Rohit Sirur, proprietor at Ashtavinayak Farms/Ashtavinayak Foods in Pune Area, India, said that the IIT Bombay-Washington U. program will provide a fantastic opportunity for already successful Indian executives and organizations to reinvest in themselves and their top performers.

“My experience in the EMBA program is that the professors will bring to Indian executives some of the most impactful and insightful real-time, industry-specific research being conducted across the entire globe,” Sirur said. “The faculty will be able to coach and consult individuals and organizations on tackling complex, real, immediate and long-term challenges facing both the individuals and organizations.”

About the IIT Bombay-Washington University EMBA program

The program is the world’s first to confer an EMBA degree from both an Indian and an American university and is modeled after Washington University’s highly ranked Executive MBA in China and the United States.

Faculty from IIT Bombay’s Shailesh J. Mehta School of Management and Olin Business School will teach the EMBA courses. Program curriculum is rooted in leadership development and innovation, including theoretical and practical training. Local perspectives on India’s rapidly developing economy will be addressed in every course.

IIT Bombay and Washington University have worked together since 2009. The institutions are members of the McDonnell Academy Global Energy and Environment Partnership, a consortium of sustainability-minded universities and corporations; the McDonnell International Scholars Academy; and the Washington University-IIT Bombay Corporate Alliance, an affiliation that develops the next generation of global leaders. Their rich partnership history facilitates the collaborative delivery of this latest venture.

Students will graduate with an Executive MBA degree from IIT Bombay and Washington University. The 18-month program uses a proven model for working professionals, with classes offered four days per month in Mumbai. The program ends with a two-week capstone experience at Washington University.

For more information, visit som.iitb.ac.in/jointEMBA.