Indian students at MBS are high caliber | Jennifer George, Dean & Director, Melbourne Business School

 | November 29,2010 01:20 pm IST

Jennifer George, Dean and Director, Melbourne Business School, Australia is a B. Sc.

(Hons) in Operations Research from University of Canterbury and a PhD in Operations, Information and Technology from Stanford University.


Popularly known as Jenny, she joined the Melbourne Business School in 1998, as a Senior Lecturer, directly from PhD studies at Stanford University where she explored a problem in queuing theory of a queue with adjustable service rates. From 2004, she held twin designation as Associate Dean, Academic Programs and Associate Professor. Considering her dedicated services, she was made Dean and Director of Melbourne Business School in June 2009.

Her teaching was recognized in 2002 with the award of a Universitas 21 Fellowship enabling her to spend time learning how to develop programs for and more effectively teach part-time students. Jennifer has a keen interest in wide range of intellectual issues and recently she has been focused particularly on the management of higher education.


Jenny share her views about Indian Management education, Indian students and MBS’s future endeavours with India in a formal colloquy with

Q. What has been the guiding principle at your B-School, which distinguishes it from other B-schools around the globe?
A. Our guiding principle is to focus on the whole-of-student-experience. Future leaders need more than just basic general management theory. They also need a global perspective, the ability to think laterally and apply solutions to new situations and they need an integrative approach. This has all been designed into our curriculum. In the latest QS survey we scored extremely well for international management and although we have specialized electives in that area, the other reason we believed we scored so well is due to our global perspective.


Q. Have you signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with any Indian B-School?
A. We have agreements with the Indian School of Business and IIM – Bangalore. These two schools provided outstanding education and are well located within India.


Q. What are the major highlights of MBA Exchange programs with Indian b-school(s)?
A. We enjoy interacting with the students sent to MBS from these partner schools. They add to the richness of our classroom and vice versa.


Q. Are you planning to tie-up with any other b-school in India?
A. Not at the moment.


Q. Which one is the most popular program at your b-school?

A. Our MBA is our flagship program. It comprises 20 subjects¬: 10 core and 10 elective. The most popular specializations are finance, marketing, strategy, entrepreneurship and more recently corporate social responsibility. Students with previous postgraduate study can get some credits towards the program; every student is expected to have work experience when they begin.


Q. How many seats do you have for the Executive MBA and full time MBA? What is the percentage of Indian students for the current batch?
A. Executive MBA – about 40 students per year. This is an exclusive group of very senior managers at the CEO level. There is usually about 1 Indian student in each cohort.

Full-time MBA – there are two intakes a year of about 50-60 students in each intake. Approximately 10% of the intake comes from India.


Q. How do you see India in terms of management education?
A. There are so many students in India looking to improve their management skills that it is difficult for the good universities and colleges in India to keep up with demand.


Q. How would you rate Indian students on a scale of 10?
A. For the full-time MBA program we have 80% international students however we try to make sure that this cohort of international students is very geographically diverse. In a recent intake of 60 students we have more than 30 countries represented.


We get some very high caliber Indian students that start the program in each intake as a result of this quota. They all have good work experience, English skills and GMAT scores and we value their perspective in the classroom because India is viewed as an important global economy both now and into the future.


Q. What is the basic eligibility criteria for international candidates looking forward at doing Executive MBA and Full time MBA?
A. Full-time MBA: 2 years work experience minimum (average is 7 years). GMAT – 570 minimum (average is 650). IELTS –7 minimum (Government visa requirement). Diversity is extremely important in our full-time MBA class.


Executive MBA: 10 years work experience minimum (average is 20 years).


Q. What is the fee structure for full time MBA as well as executive MBA, including living expenses?
A. In 2011, full-time MBA - $64,000 plus living expenses. The Australian government recommended cost of living for international students is $18,000 a year. We advise students to budget $25,000 for living costs because the MBA program is 16 months.


In 2011, the fee for EMBA is $103,000. This includes accommodation, meals and tuition.


Q. Do you even offer scholarships to extraordinarily meritorious students as well as international students? Do you provide any financial assistance to international students?
A. We provide scholarships to about a quarter of our students and we are hoping to increase that substantially in the next few years.


Q. What are your future plans for the institute?
A. We are consistently ranked in the top three Schools in the Asia-Pacific region. We would like to consolidate this position, continuing to enhance our curriculum through the addition of more integrative elements and practical experience. Our internship program has been growing year by year and we hope to make internships an integral part of the MBA for every student who wants one.