Published on 4 December 2014
Four local school principals and deputy principals studying an Executive Master of Business Administration (EMBA) at USC were among a group of 19 postgraduate business students who recently travelled to Vietnam.
The week-long field trip allowed participants to learn about doing business in Asia and to observe various business principles in practice first-hand.
Glasshouse Mountains State School Principal Elizabeth Somers said she found the trip very beneficial because it really reinforced the course content.
“The trip to Vietnam was invaluable for showing concrete examples of the strategies that we have been learning about, particularly in marketing. We visited a number of innovative companies who used a range of marketing strategies,” she said.
“As education moves to greater independent management, school principals need to be more like business managers. Leading our schools in a competitive market using strategies based on sound business principles is essential.”
This was the second trip to Vietnam for commercial property manager Wayne Bluck of Mooloolaba as part of his two-year EMBA.
“I am exploring a joint venture manufacturing business with a Vietnamese business partner,” he said. “I developed the idea as part of an assignment for the course last year, and it’s now much closer to fruition. Vietnam is growing in importance in manufacturing and also as a distribution hub throughout Asia.”
The group visited 11 different companies in Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi, from well-established international companies to not-for-profits.
USC Associate Professor Meredith Lawley said overseas study tours were a popular optional component of all the postgraduate business degrees on offer at USC.
She was quietly chuffed that their Hanoi tour guide noted a difference between the USC group compared to groups from other countries.
“She was impressed by the fact that, as a group, we were not just interested in business, but combined business with social responsibility and were more focussed on changing lives through business,” she said.
“Vietnam is a country where well over 50 percent of the population is under 30, over 90 percent of people have mobile phones, but less than 25 percent have refrigerators.”
USC’s EMBA targets busy executives and is delivered through intensive weekend workshops once a month for two years.
— Jane Cameron