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HKU Full-time MBA Advantage

Francois Lam
  • NameFrancois Lam
  • NationalityPortugal
  • BatchClass of 2018

Francois Lam, Full-time MBA Class of 2018, born in Portugal, who previously worked in Geneva and Hong Kong at UBS before joining HKU MBA, has a wealth of experience in investment banking in the advisory mandates as a portfolio specialist.

Why HKU MBA? Knowledge and Career Opportunities. HKU MBA equips our MBAs with knowledge of new technology and business models beyond the buzzwords. This year, we offer an up-to-market elective course on FinTech, allowing our MBAs to have an understanding of the emergence of FinTech and its impact on global finance and banking. This  provides a more competitive, level playing field for our MBAs in career opportunities.  

Eric Leung
  • NameEric Leung
  • NationalityHong Kong
  • BatchClass of 2018

A persistent team player with diverse work experience and ambition to make the world a happier place.

Having studied in Hong Kong until grade nine, I had the opportunity to travel to America to further my studies. I completed my high school education in Boston and was very fortunate to be accepted by Columbia University in New York City for my undergraduate studies, where I received my Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science.

After I graduated from Columbia University, I joined EY as a Technology Consultant. During my time at EY, I not only had to utilise my programming skills, but also my soft skills because consulting was truly about understanding my clients’ needs and working with my team to provide the best solutions. I then joined Ivy Labs Education in Beijing as an Education Consultant, where I further honed my communication and leadership skills through providing consultations to different families with diverse backgrounds and values, and organising forums throughout major cities in China. Even though I enjoyed what I was doing, I wanted to become a better leader, especially in management. Therefore, I decided to pursue an MBA degree.

I joined HKU MBA because I believe that this programme is the portal to propelling my career to the next stage, and for three main reasons. First, HKU’s wide network can connect me to more opportunities in Hong Kong. Second, the HKU Career Office’s professionalism will also aid me to fully use these resources. Finally, I will also have the opportunity to take classes at LBS, which will definitely be an invaluable experience for me.

Prajnananda Kusuma
  • NamePrajnananda Kusuma
  • NationalityIndonesia
  • BatchClass of 2018

Prajnananda Kusuma

Preparing our MBAs to reach their career goals and objectives is one of the mandates of the  HKU MBA. Both Praj and Zach shared a similar professional background in consulting and they told us that the career services at HKU MBA had provided them with a foundation of understanding about different industry expectations and their career journeys. Having their time packed with different career services activities such as the mentorship programme, company visits, career takes and even case competitions opened up  a lot more possibilities for them. 

Learning in class also plays an important role during the intensive 14-month journey.  They worked on strategy, in teams and on common goals and professors provided spot on feedback on assignments, both to individuals and groups, for our MBAs to continue their development.

Suyanee Attawuttinun
  • NameSuyanee Attawuttinun
  • NationalityThailand
  • BatchClass of 2018

I graduated with a bachelor's degree, majoring in Finance and a minor in Real Estate Business from Thammasat University in Thailand. After graduating, I joined Unilever Thailand in the Finance Division (Marketing Partner).
 
While I was with Unilever, I  worked not only within the finance function but also with cross-functional teams such as the Brand Building Marketing, Channel Marketing and Supply Chain teams, and this experience made me more interested in overall organisation approach.
 
To understand more about its business, I would like to improve my knowledge of other business areas. In September last year, I went to the HKU MBA information session in Bangkok. What I did there helped me understand more about the programme. HKU MBA offers extensive coverage of the business environment in Asia and provides opportunities at the global level through its partner universities, LBS and CBS. Not only does HKU MBA design its courses for students to learn different core drivers in business, the programme also prepares a wide range of workshops, organised by its career services team, that support students in their next career journey. This is the programme that I strongly associated with my aspiration, hence I focused solely in getting into HKU MBA.

Amanda Gan
  • NameAmanda Gan
  • NationalityMalaysia
  • BatchClass of 2018

After graduating with Honours in Psychology at the University of New South Wales in Sydney, I decided to return home to Kuala Lumpur. There, I worked with Samsung Electronics for 3 years, after a short but rewarding internship with PwC. With a background in science, I always felt I needed to increase my business acumen to widen my horizons and to stay competitive. Since joining this MBA programme, I have gained much more than just textbook knowledge, through the case-based teaching approach that lecturers adopt and also through the non-academic activities students are constantly being involved in. However the most rewarding experience for me personally is the opportunity to interact with bright individuals from immensely diverse backgrounds, cultures and nationalities.

Working with HK Tramways in a live project, gives me a chance to put what I have learnt into practice, by contributing to the solution of a real-world business problem. The Women in Leadership club is also a great venue where I can expand on my networks and collaborate with remarkable professionals on events and activities. I am also making the most out of the mentorship programme arranged by the Career Services office, which are always eager to provide support and career-related advice when required.

I am excited at progressing through the rest of this MBA programme, and in anticipating what awaits all of us in the next step of our journeys towards success.

Marco Lam
  • NameMarco Lam
  • NationalityHong Kong
  • BatchClass of 2018

My background might be considered quite unconventional for a business school graduate student. I did my Bachelor of Arts degree in Jewel­ry at London Guildhall University (now merged with London Metropolitan University) where I learnt all aspects of the industry – including management, marketing, branding, sales, design and production. During my undergraduate years, I was fortunate to receive 3 national design awards in the United Kingdom, from The Worshipful Company of Goldsmiths, the Victoria and Albert Museum and The British Jewelers’ Association. I also hold a Graduate Gemologist degree from the Gemological Institute of America.

Although I started my career in design, I realised very soon that my interests and ambitions were much broader than that. Slowly, I moved onto other aspects of the industry including merchandising, branding and marketing. In 2014, when the sales of luxury goods, especially watches and jewelry, reduced dramatically due to certain political and economic factors, I took some time off to learn a Latin language (French) and to think about how I wanted to progress in my career.

This is when an interesting opportunity came my way; I joined a fine wine merchant specialising in Burgundy wines. This time, I took on a purely sales-oriented role and eventually was involved in marketing and business development as well. During my time there, I gained valuable experience which included managing a sales team of 10 members, developing over 200 key accounts, handling the marketing and promotion of the company and of course, learning how to appreciate wine.

Because I’ve been fortunate enough to experience different roles throughout the luxury industry, I was constantly required to learn on the job. The more I was involved in different job functions, the more I wanted to take on additional responsibilities and figure out how to manage a business as a whole. This is when I decided to join the HKU MBA programme because I feel like it will provide me with the skills to achieve such a goal. Of course, meeting new people is also a great benefit.

Now, this is my third term in HKU MBA, I have already gained invaluable knowledge and had the privilege of attending some inspiring courses. I thoroughly enjoy the small-class atmosphere at HKU where students can form a close bond and share their ideas easily. Because we are such a tightly knit cohort, we have had a chance to work with almost everybody in our class, which is one of the reasons why this programme is so unique.

David Kim
  • NameDavid Kim
  • NationalitySouth Korea
  • BatchClass of 2018

After graduating with a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Yonsei University, South Korea, I began my career at LSIS Co., Ltd, which is a local electricity manufacturing company. There, I gained three years of work experience in the accounting and business planning team. During this time, I acquired knowledge in how to manage the business, and how to make and use money.

I chose an MBA to change my career from the manufacturing industry to the finance industry. Above all, I wanted to realise my potential in the city of Hong Kong. HKU MBA was the best option for me because it is located in Hong Kong, Asia’s leading financial center, not to mention that it is the No.1 Asian MBA programme.

So far my HKU MBA life has been truly fantastic and given me lots of positive stimulation. I have been especially impressed by the high quality lectures from excellent professors, and wonderful classmates. Furthermore, Career Development Office staffs have been more than helpful in providing me with numerous opportunities to participate in career events and have interviews. I think the existence of CDO definitely increases the chances of MBA classmates getting a high quality job.

I am certain that the MBA experience is enabling me to develop the ability to see problems from various perspectives. Also, it has allowed me to work well in a global environment by studying with classmates of various backgrounds.

I’m honoured to be a member of HKU MBA and believe that this experience will certainly be a cause of making my life more subjective and realising my dreams.

Angela Tai
  • NameAngela Tai
  • NationalityCanada
  • BatchClass of 2018

Upon graduation from Sauder School of Business at The University of British Columbia, I joined HSBC Bank Canada in the Retail Banking and Wealth Management Division. Through generating client trust and ensuring high quality wealth services while adhering to HSBC’s strict Global Standards, I was able to develop as a more motivated and dedicated individual. These strengths carried through after I had made the decision to relocate from North America back to Asia.

Before I joined the MBA Class of 2018, I was the marketing and business development director at a start-up artificial intelligence company based in Shenzhen, China. With my previous knowledge and experience, I could actively contribute to the growth of the company, now valued at CNY 200million and making its impact in the artificial intelligence community.

Educated in both Asia and North America, I possess the holistic, quantitative and team-based ways of the East as well as the analytic, creative and initiative approaches of the West. Hong Kong is indisputably the right place for me. My experience of Hong Kong’s lively environment and HKU’s welcoming atmosphere has been a fruitful one since Day 1. From lectures, to workshops, not to mention eventful networking opportunities, the MBA life has provided a valuable experience in every aspect.

In the following months, I hope to maximise my experience at HKU MBA. By enrolling in subjects I have not had the chance to come in contact with, I will be able to strengthen core skill sets and expand my knowledge field. By participating in Live Projects and Student Club activities, I will be able to contribute to society in a meaningful way. By utilising the many advancement opportunities the Career Development Office provides, I will be able to seek my value in the business community of Hong Kong and Asia as a whole. The elective courses at CBS will certainly expand this journey and broaden my vision.

 The HKU MBA programme has provided me with the opportunity to meet and get to know outstanding individuals from all sectors and professions. By working together and learning from each other today, we are able to become the better business leaders of tomorrow. 

Chang Li
  • NameChang Li
  • NationalityMainland China
  • BatchClass of 2018

I grew up in Sichuan Province in Mainland China. After graduating from high school, I went to Japan to pursue my bachelor degree and majored in accounting. I joined one of the four biggest life insurers in Japan as the first foreigner, after graduating from college. I soon set my long-term career goal which is to lead the overseas business of my company.

To reach my career goal, I got assigned, as I had hoped, to the Investment Investigation department, the cross-border M&A team in New York, and the Profit Management department. In my 5-year career, I have gained the necessary expertise which involves financial analysis ability, logical thinking ability, negotiation skills, and an understanding of business culture both in Japan and the U.S.

However, I needed advanced financial knowledge, legal knowledge, human resource management knowledge related to M&A, and global strategy capability. That is why I decided to study at a business school. With this clear objective, I wanted to study practically; something I can really apply. So I decided to learn in Asia, where the cases we studied would be more Asian oriented, and where the professors and classmates would also understand more about Asian business. Therefore, HKU was my first choice. Its courses meet my needs and hold a high academic reputation. Its partner school programme allows access to the academic resources of another top-level business school, and the chance to establish a valuable, worldwide network is always helpful in such a globalised environment.

My HKU MBA journey so far has been dynamic and inspiring with distinguished classmates from diversified backgrounds. I am trying to link the knowledge from courses to the real problems in my company, and the professors are helpful in discussing those questions with me even after the class. CDO helped me to start doing part-time internship in a PE firm, as I wanted, as well. I can learn how to evaluate different companies and strategies so as to operate companies in a real job, which is extremely valuable to me.

Toru Watanabe
  • NameToru Watanabe
  • NationalityJapan
  • BatchClass of 2018

I was born in Japan and graduated from Waseda University with a Bachelor’s degree in Literature. It was a great experience to learn how to look at one circumstance from several different points of view. Soon after graduation, I began to work for a financial company as a sales officer which gave me a sense of contributing to society.

After four and a half years at a branch in Japan, I moved to the Hanoi office of the same company. I was promoted twice to manager positions during my three and half years there and led different staff groups as a team head. I was in charge of approximately 200 large clients and the core businesses were corporate finance, transaction banking, and advisory for market investigation and/or M&A. Apart from front-sales activity, I also jumped into middle-back tasks such as products development and ALM control of the region. The experience not only enriched my finance related knowledge, it strengthened my managerial ability to handle a task force until a problem is solved.

I’m pursuing HKU MBA to strengthen my skills in personal appeal on the basis of my professional experience, to expand my connections with future global talents throughout the world, and to have my previous experience endorsed by a top level business school, since I have a limited academic background in terms of finance or economics. My HKU classmates are all exciting. They constantly refresh my views and wipe away stereotypes. I do believe HKU MBA is the best place for me, not just because we can hear good lectures from professors on the beautiful campus but because we can create theories/ideas with world-wide perspectives and put them into practice.

HKU and I are always open to you. Please don’t hesitate to contact us!

Di Xie
  • NameDi Xie
  • NationalityChina
  • BatchClass of 2018

I come from Guangdong province, which was the pilot province for China's reform and opening to the outside world, and it is one of the most developed areas in China as well. When I was in high school, Adam Smith's Theory of Moral Sentiment had a deep impact on me.  At that point, I set the ideal for my life – to improve myself and contribute to society.

After graduating from Sun Yat-sen University and receiving my bachelor of economics, I joined China International Capital Corporation Limited(CICC)’s investment banking department. I started my career as a banker and, fortunately,  I never let go of my ideal. CICC not only made me an excellent and professional investment banker, but also taught me to contribute to society. I helped Asia's largest livestock company go public, which made thousands of farmers millionaires. The company became the largest listed company on China's GEM board and on the date of listing, its stock value exceeded 40 billion dollars. I also assisted many state-owned enterprises in reforming and reorganising through M&A, which greatly improved their domestic and international competitiveness. My project experience covers IPO, M&A and bond projects in A and H shares, which gave me a deep understanding of capital markets in China and Hong Kong.

On my 24th birthday, I decided to step outside China and broaden my horizons. I prefer the HKU MBA to an MBA in North America because China and Hong Kong are developing and changing rapidly. I can keep pace with the change only if I live in it. The HKU MBA programme has a unique location advantage, the top business school exchange programme and a diversified student source. I believe that after studying at HKU and CBS, I can become a better person and contribute more to society.

Abhijit Sharma
  • NameAbhijit Sharma
  • NationalityIndia
  • BatchClass of 2018

My past years saw me complete my bachelor of engineering degree from India, and gathered over six and a half years of global experience in IT delivery, consulting, and stakeholder management. I led programmes initially at Wipro and later at Amadeus, and donned several hats, including those of quality lead, business analyst, and consultant, which gave me the opportunity to conceptualise processes and solutions to alleviate clients’ business problems by leveraging technology.

My experiences soon led me realise that Asia was going to be the epicentre of growth and opportunity for decades to come and witnessing the energy during my stint in Hong Kong convinced me to learn about business in the financial heart of Asia. The undisputed prestige of The University of Hong Kong in Asia and the world, and the excellent structure of its full-time MBA made this programme my easy first choice.

Now, a month and a half since the inception of the Beijing part of the programme, the learning atmosphere created by the energy of the classmates and the passion of the college staff and lecturers is truly inspirational. The mix of nationalities, backgrounds, aspirations and personalities is already reaping benefits in the classroom and beyond, and it has set quite a stage for us all to excel in our journeys throughout the next year!