Bring your global mindset to life in this International Executive MBA

The University of St.Gallen’s International Executive MBA program provides a truly international experience for its students, with international faculty, content, and opportunities to study abroad. We spoke with Annelies van Herck, the Head of Programs & Finance and the Vice Director of the IEMBA program. Find out how the IEMBA program helps students build a global mindset and uses Swiss values to bring new perspectives to life.

In short

An International Executive MBA that nurtures a "global mindset"

The University of St.Gallen’s International Executive MBA (IEMBA) was developed eight years ago, built on its popular German-speaking EMBA program that the university has run since 1987.

Annelies tells us, the IEMBA is “really built for an executive that wants to enhance their global mindset. So our courses are run by international faculty, we have international content, and we work together with our international partners to also deliver international courses abroad.” (00:48)

Drawing on its strengths as a Swiss university, the University of St.Gallen’s IEMBA program attracts students from around the world, who often have some kind of link to Switzerland.

These students are also looking to learn more about the DACH region and how they can bring these learnings back to their respective countries. “What we need is our students to be willing to learn from the DACH region… [while] on the other hand, also having this global mindset where they want to learn from other countries and other regions in the world,” Annelies says. (02:08)

Be a globetrotting student: How the University of St.Gallen partners with other universities to build a truly international experience

To ensure its students receive a high-quality international experience, the University of St.Gallen works with various global partners.

“For instance, we work together with Tsinghua University in China and with the University of [California] Irvine in the US,” Annelies tells us. “We also have partnerships with Esade in Barcelona and with the University of Cape Town in South Africa. This gives our students the opportunity to [do] four core courses and elective courses [and] have different experiences all around the world.” (04:16)

In the IEMBA program, students start with two core courses on campus in St.Gallen, Switzerland. They then have the opportunity to complete more courses in Asia and the US, to gain unique international experience.

Integrative thinking, practical relevance, and sustainability: An IEMBA program embedded with Swiss values

While the IEMBA program focuses primarily on strategy, finance, and sustainability, Annelies tells us the program’s values are “very much embedded in the University of St.Gallen culture.” (06:25)

“Switzerland is known for a lot more than only the mountains,” Annelies elaborates. “It’s known for its precision, it’s known for its integrative thinking and being able to debate and see different standpoints and then come to a conclusion – and that’s also what we bring in strongly in the Executive MBA programs.” (01:15)

These elements – precision, integrative thinking, and healthy debate – play a crucial role in bringing together diverse perspectives within the IEMBA classroom, allowing its students to share and gain new insights with an international flair.

Beyond its focus on integrative thinking, academic rigor, and practical relevance, the university also puts sustainability in the spotlight. “This is one of the focuses that we as a university find very important and that we also as a program try to live as much as possible within the program,” Annelies says. (06:59)

If you’re looking for a unique, international MBA program to open your perspective to new ideas, thinking, and a global mindset – not to mention the beautiful setting and Swiss values embedded within the program – then the IEMBA at the University of St.Gallen might be just what you’re looking for.

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