Wing Lee, Ceibs The half way point of my journey

Another term has come to an end and it stunned me a little bit when I realised that I am already approaching the halfway mark of my MBA journey.

As I sit here writing this entry in a tiny cafe in the city centre of Hong Kong, I also realised that most of my entries had been written away from Shanghai and the school’s campus, perhaps highlighting the consistently hectic but always rewarding MBA lifestyle that I have experienced since I arrived in China.

I shall briefly summarise the key events for me during this short school term in this entry (the duration was shortened due to the Chinese New Year holidays in February).

The first piece of good news for me was the acceptance of my exchange school application to Insead. For our school, this was a competitive process where more than half the class (around 100 individuals) would bid for exchange spots across the world, ranging from London Business School, Iese, HKUST, Wharton, UC Berkeley and UCLA, to name just a few.

My only choice was Insead as I wanted to further my experience in Asia and hence the Singapore campus was a natural choice for me. I see this as not only a great chance to explore a new geographical area, but also to draw some comparisons between Ceibs and Insead. I am very excited about the prospect of a new environment of academic learning, different classmates and the exotic location that awaits me in September.

Back to the academic schedule at Ceibs, this term we were able to select elective courses that would cater more towards our specific interests and career needs. I attended a couple of valuable courses. This included a course on services management where we got some key takeaways about service industry business models through cases on a range of sectors including airlines, online grocery shopping and retail banking services.

The other elective I signed up for was a course on value investment, where the lecturers were a range of fund managers from local and international hedge funds focused on medium to long-term equity value investments. They had initially run the course in Columbia Business School and afterreceiving a positive reception, decided to hold the course in Shanghai at our school as well. I grew to appreciate their approach based on fundamental values such as management alignment of interest, corporate strategic models and use of various valuation models and logical assumptions.

Finally we ended the term with our student committee-organised annual ‘culture night’ where classmates from all around the world performed their own individual interpretations of their home culture. We had the pleasure of witnessing performances from Bollywood and Bangra dance moves, a Tae Kwon Do performance by the Korean students (the eventual group winners of the night’s competition), to a solo traditional Chinese opera performance. A great way to end a rewarding term!