Welcome to the New MBA Class

International cohort embarks on two-year “life changer”

14/09/2015 Barcelona

The IESE MBA: “It’s inspiring and rewarding on a personal, as well as professional level.” / Photo: IESE

An exciting and game-changing experience awaits the 297 new students who begin the 2015-2017 MBA program today.

Around them as they sit down in class will be the unfamiliar faces of peers from 55 countries, each of whom has a different cultural background and set of unique viewpoints. But those faces won’t be unfamiliar for long: among them will be future friends, business partners and lifelong acquaintances, whose diverse cultures and perspectives will contribute to the mutual development of the whole cohort.

The international nature of the IESE MBA is regularly highlighted by participants as one of the key reasons they choose the program – and as one of its greatest strengths once the program is underway. This year's intake join IESE hot on the heels of a new Forbes ranking which puts the IESE MBA in #2 place internationally.

According to Sean Porta, student council representative and second-year MBA candidate, this diversity was not "just a criteria in my selection of business school – it was a must. IESE’s diverse community of students was a big reason why I came to the school – every day you get to benefit from the insightsbrought to the classroom by the vastly different geographic and professional backgrounds."

Fellow 2016 candidate Camille Chow from Singapore agrees: "One of my main objectives of going to business school is to broaden my perspective and to learn from people with different backgrounds, experiences and cultures," she says. "At IESE, the opportunity to work with and learn from such a varied and interesting mix of people has exposed me to different ideas and inspired me in many ways. I believe my MBA experience would not have been as fulfilling without such a diverse student body."

The new intake can look forward to a similarly multicultural learning environment. A full 80 percent of the Class of 2017 cohort is international and includes students from the US, India, Brazil, Japan, the UK, China, France, Taiwan and Chile, as well as Spain.

This two-year deep dive into career and personal development will be life changing for the students who begin today.

With an average of five years’ work experience, the cohort – 28 percent of whom are women – will tackle challenges together, learning alongside and from each other both inside and outside the classroom. As Norway’s Frida Rustøen says, "IESE’s highly diverse student base, in combination with the case methodology, fosters an excellent environment for learning.

"It’s inspiring and rewarding on a personal, as well as professional level."