Lauder Institute to offer students a 'Global' view
New program will take students to ten different cities all over the world
January 10, 2013, 11:12 pm·
On their thirtieth anniversary, the Joseph H. Lauder Institute of Management and International Studies at Wharton is taking international business education to the next level.
Beginning this May, students in the new Global Program at the Lauder Institute will focus on developing broader skills as global entrepreneurs. The program combines a Wharton MBA and a master’s degree from the School of Arts and Sciences and includes a summer immersion program along with four semesters of classes at Penn.
While current students in the Lauder Institute are already required to develop their skills extensively in one language other than English, the Global Program requires students to know at least two foreign languages coming in.
“We want to train people who will be adaptable and be able to operate across cross-cultural boundaries,” Director of the Lauder Institute Mauro Guillen said.
Regina Abrami, the new director of the Global Program, said she decided to come to Penn because she believes in the mission of the program.
“It is important for professional students to have a deep understanding of context for professional studies,” she said. “We live in an integrated global economy and the people who do best in the system … work well across borders.”
Abrami, along with Guillen and Co-Director of the Lauder Institute and SAS Liason Fred Dickinson, is currently working on designing the curriculum for the program, which includes a summer immersion program as well as four or five Global Program classes.
The immersion program is different from the Lauder Institute’s typical summer programs because rather than studying solely in one country, students are able to travel all around the world — from Washington, D.C. to Singapore, London and several other cities.
“It includes a mixture of field-based exercises that are geared to make students understand value and risk and basic responsibilities, which vary across different contexts,” Abrami said. “Students don’t want to travel around the world and just sit in lectures.”
Students will then return to Penn and be integrated into the existing MBA and M.A. program for international studies. In addition, students will have the opportunity to take specific classes designed for the program. Topics will include global policy, diplomacy, intercultural negotiations and communications.
According to Guillen, other Ivy League schools, such as Columbia and Harvard, have programs that attempt to address “the increasingly interconnected world.”
“There are other schools who have masters in international business, but there’s nothing that I know of that requires such an in-depth immersion and language requirement,” Abrami said.
“It’s really the only program of its kind,” Guillen added.
The program has completed its first round of applications, with three students currently enrolled. The second round of applications is now underway. The program is looking for a total of eight to 10 students. It has received about 30 applications so far in both rounds.
“We want to select [students] that are very cosmopolitan,” Guillen said.
Dickinson said he is excited for its launch.
“This program is one of the very important concrete enterprises that we can boast on the University of Pennsylvania campus,” Dickinson said. “Penn and Lauder are out there on the front line on the cutting edge of thinking about global engagements. I think it’s a very exciting time for Lauder.”