Go to contents

Korea University Launches MBA Program

Posted August. 30, 2006 03:01,   


Inside the Grand Ball Room in Oak Valley in Wonju City, Gangwon Province, Korea, the new student orientation for the first Global MBA program of Korea University was held on August 23. Ten Korean and foreign students had their eyes covered with an eye-patch, holding a rope hanging from a cup, and moving it toward the given target in their teamwork training. Other students who were initially shy shouted directions to them, “Turn left,” and “Go straight.” A Sorbonne University graduate, Alexandra (26, female) said, “The Korean-style programs, which are hard to have exposure to in foreign universities taught me the importance of leadership and communication within an organization.” These days, fierce competitions are occurring among universities to develop “the original Korean MBA course” based on various case studies at home and abroad and the most current management theories overseas.

“Let’s Learn Korean-Style Management”-

The Ministry of Education and Human Resources Development gave permits to six Korean universities – Seoul National University, Korea University, Yonsei University, Ewha Womans University, Hanyang University, and Sogang University – to have their management graduate schools recruit the first class of graduate school students recently.

Some of their advantages as “original Korean MBA programs” are cheaper tuition fees than overseas MBA programs, a variety of students from all over the world, and the ability of students to take overseas MBA courses like those in the U.S. Another plus to attract students is to have such a uniquely strong “human network” within the Korean universities.

Ghislain Brun, a French student who entered the Korea Global MBA School where 22 out of 64 entrants are foreigners, said, “I came here to learn ‘Korean management’ based on my two-year experience at the Embassy of France in Korea.”

Including Ghislain, 22 entrants at the Korea Global MBA School even successfully completed the “Mak-gur-li Bowl Ceremony (Mak-gur-li is an opaque, creamy white drink that has less alcohol which is drunk out of bowls),” the typical orientation ceremony to celebrate their entrance during the four-day orientation from August 22.

Most Lessons in English-

Most of the students have a job, so the majority of the MBA courses are highly intensive and “short” to save time.

The Seoul National Global MBA School, which kicked off on August 21, will have all of its classes taught in English. A specialty is that it runs a dual-degree system along with Duke University of the U.S., where 16 percent of the class, or eight students, are foreigners.

Korea Global MBA School also teaches all of its lessons in English, validating credits from prestigious overseas universities such as Harvard University of the U.S., having credit validation from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB).

Recently, Yonsei Global MBA School admitted 98 students for its 18-month programs: 61 for general courses; seven for industry-academia cooperation programs; and 30 for global courses. For the global courses, classes are taught in English with 30 percent of the students are foreign nationals.

Amid the heated boom in the “the original Korean MBA,” schools that have already run two-year MBA courses include Korea Advanced Institute of Science & Technology’s (KAIST) Graduate School of Technology and Management (54 credits) and

Sungkyunkwan University’s “SKK GSB” Course (54 credits).

Kim Hyung-gi, director at JCMBA, an MBA consulting firm, predicted, “Whether or not case studies can be conducted that are closely related to the reality of Korea and are feasible will determine the soft landing of ‘the original Korean MBA.’”

ddr@donga.com witness@donga.com