Master of Business Administration
Born: New Zealand
It is ironic that Paul Si'ulepa was born in the very place that has given him his biggest career break. AIS St Helens in the Auckland city suburb of Western Springs used to be an antenatal hospital. Now it's producing some of the most in demand business graduates in the Asian-Pacific region; Paul among them.
Wanting to up skill was the obvious motivator to pursuing his Masters of Business Administration (MBA) but it was that global focus that convinced the 45 year-old Samoan to choose AIS St Helens.
“Doing my MBA at the AIS St Helens gave me a more worldly view than the westernised view of business I was used to,” he explained.
“Mixing and working with people of other cultures gives you some insight that you probably wouldn't get anywhere else. It gives you an inkling of the market first hand and what works.”
And that experience has carved out his approach to business. “If you're not thinking global, you're not with the play,” he says.
Paul gained a Certificate in Direct Marketing while in Australia in 1985. He then returned home and clocked up over twenty years of experience working for a number of companies and government agencies including the New Zealand Herald, Work and Income and the New Zealand Immigration Service, where he held the position of National Call Centre Manager and Pacific Strategy Director, before enrolling at AIS St Helens in 2000.
During the 18 month course, Paul re-evaluated his goals and because of the networks he had developed saw a different outcome for himself.
“When I decided to do my MBA my whole outlook was I wanted to be higher in the government department I was working with. I got halfway through it and learned there was a bigger world out there and I needed to do my own thing,” Paul adds.
“What this MBA gives you is leadership and confidence.”
Upon graduating in December 2002 and armed with his MBA, Paul started up two “niche” recruitment/employment companies International People Solutions Limited, and Graduate Personnel Limited.
Paul resides in Mt Albert but grew up out west educated at Kelston Boys High School.
He is a devoted Christian, married to his “childheart sweetheart” Barbara with sons Sam (10) and Jack (5).
He traces his Samoan ancestry back to Satalo-Falealili, through his father Soi Teo Si'ulepa and Manono, through his mother Leiataua Afega Si'ulepa. He was also a top rugby league player in his youth representing New Zealand at youth level.back to top
Catherine Du Guiying
Catherine Du Guiying arrived from Beijing China to enrol in the AIS St Helens MBA programme. Because of her steady application and positive attitude she achieved almost straight A grades in all her modules and was one of the best students of her year. Now she is continuing her work in the MBA field:
“My MBA study at AIS St Helens is of great help to me at my current job, Director of the Academic Affairs Office at Beijing International MBA Program at Peking University. It is the 18 months MBA study at AIS St Helens that enabled me to have a better understanding of the proper MBA curriculum and all the MBA courses.”
Catherine is a regular attendee at the AIS St Helens Alumni functions held in Beijing and other international cities. She represents the new breed of Chinese manager - educated abroad, fluent in English language, and up to date with the latest management techniques and cutting edge practice. Now Catherine is part of the effort by China to train its own MBAs and leaders in management.back to top
Harpreet Singh Johar
MY SCHOOL - AIS ST HELENS
I came to New Zealand in September 2003 and enrolled for the MBA programme at AIS St Helens. Ever since, I have been associated with this great institute which I call my school.
Transition is rarely smooth and neither was mine from India to here. The fear of the unknown creates that sense of paranoia and it was in those troubled moments that AlS St Helens stood by me like a rock and gave me that inner strength. It was at AIS St Helens where I first came across cultural diversity in its true sense and it was here that I was taught how to handle it and also how to overcome cultural shock.
The MBA programme at AIS St Helens is tailor-made for immigrants like me. Most of us immigrants have probably left our countries for the first time and therefore during the preliminary days we need more than just an institute that can teach us our subjects. We need a lot more information about the country, the people, and any information that can help us settle in this country. My school was a great help as far as this was concerned. We had good guidance and advice always available to us, whenever we needed it and it was obvious that the staff at AIS St Helens were experienced and well aware of the requirements of new immigrants. The dormitory facility that is provided by AIS helps students overcome the problem of accommodation in an unknown world and the cafeteria, which serves both Indian and Asian food, gives the homely feeling.
My MBA programme was very well designed and only I know how much I learned from it. I had been in business all my life, but this programme changed all my obsolete concepts and helped me develop a new frame of mind. I started thinking 'out of the box' and I also started to think big like general managers and managing directors. The teachers were all good with clear concepts and utilised the latest practical techniques. Learning was fun and enlightening. Information in the library and access to good online information banks was readily available. Weekend classes was another brilliant idea as we students got the flexibility to either work or study during the week days as per our individual convenience. Altogether, I realise today that my decision to study at AIS St Helens was probably one of the best decisions I have ever taken in my life because the moment I finished my MBA, I was rewarded for my efforts by my employers with a substantial promotion which brought with it a lot of other benefits. The progress did not stop there and has continued to this date, and at every stage, my education at AIS St Helens has stood by me.
I am proud to be an AIS St Helens MBA product and always will be.back to top
Huiling chose to complete an MBA at AIS St Helens to gain a better understanding and knowledge of international business and management.
“The MBA programme gives me one of the aids I need to achieve my personal ambitions,” she says.
Currently Huiling works as a customer services officer at ASB Bank in Auckland. Eventually she would like to become a professional banker and financial consultant.
At AIS St Helens, Huiling enjoyed meeting people from different cultures and learning from experienced lecturers. However, she admits studying in English was sometimes challenging.
Huiling says at AIS St Helens she learned communication and presentation skills and grasped the basic concepts of how management and business work. “I also learned it is very important to be able to practice what we learned in the course and apply it to a real situation.”
For her research topic, Huiling investigated the effectiveness of direct marketing campaigns undertaken by ASB Bank in New Zealand. The 28-year-old says studying in New Zealand is quite different to China. She says life as an AIS St Helens student is more fun, challenging and definitely very enjoyable.back to top
Educated: MBA graduated May 2005
Sang-Jin Oh is passionate about sports and business, but he also wants to be a good boss and that is why he did an MBA.
In Korea Sang-Jin founded his own sports agency called Sport Marketing Group (SMG) in 1998. SMG manage famous Korean soccer, basketball and tennis players. Sang-Jin role was to send young and promising Korean soccer players to train alongside the best at England's Manchester United club and Bobby Charlton International School and Brazil's Zico Soccer School.
Despite mingling with the famous, Sang-Jin and his wife were seeking a more relaxed lifestyle temporarily. In May 2003, they moved to New Zealand and SMG leadership duties and rights were delegated to a business partner.
Although Sang-Jin had already done an arts degree at the prestigious Korea University, he was eager to utilise and support his business experience with a relevant qualification. The AIS St Helens MBA programme fulfilled that need.
“I had owned my own business for several years, but I didn't have the basic knowledge. I thought that to be a better boss I needed more knowledge.”
He says the MBA course timetable was very flexible and because he had a new baby, he could share domestic duties with his wife.
“The quality of the MBA lecturers is very good. The programme is also very diverse and teaches many things such as accounting, management and marketing.”
Djaja Kurniawan Kusno
Educated: MBA graduated 1997
Wanting to fast track his career Djaja Kurniawan Kusno chose AIS St Helens as his preferred choice of study.
The 32-year-old from Indonesia MBA graduate now works at AIS St Helens main campus as a Student Services Officer. Djaja communicates with overseas agents, arranges overseas education visits for AIS St Helens' directors and cares for students' welfare.
In Indonesia Djaja studied engineering, was an operator on the exchange market and an estimator for an aluminium company. However, concerned about the politics and economy in Indonesian, he left.
When Djaja first arrived in New Zealand, he studied English and computers for six months. Keen to gain a postgraduate qualification the one-year MBA programme was the ideal solution.
“I liked it that I could study at the weekends, the course was short and the content very good. We do lots of presentations and express our ideas, which is very good for students' communication skills.”
Djaja says having an MBA qualification is useful.
“There are companies and franchises around the world. An MBA gives you an understanding and knowledge of the international market.”
AIS St Helens MBA graduate Rony Pawar's credits his achievements to the skills he learned studying.
Recently Rony was nominated as the best team manager at Teltech NZ Limited, a multinational contact center in Auckland. He also tutors BIB (Bachelor of International Business) students part-time at AIS St Helens.
Prior to studying Rony was a commissioned officer in the Indian army. He quit this position and enrolled in the MBA course to develop his management and business skills.
“I wanted some business acumen to have a competitive edge in the market,” he says.
He chose AIS St Helens after a recommendation from a friend.
“AIS St Helens has the best lecturers and students receive more attention than a large university.”
He says despite the challenges of adapting to a new culture, he enjoyed his experience and achieved high results. Papers in human resources, communication and marketing were particular useful. For his final research project, he worked at Startel Group, an Auckland contact center. He believes this experience helped him secure his current job.
Rony's most memorable moment was being valedictorian at graduation. In the future he would like to do his PhD and eventually become a lecturer.back to top
Educated: MBA graduated 2002
What does AIS St Helens have in common with jam, peanut butter and honey? The answer is Job Cyril.
Job is a MBA graduate and a category assistant at Progressive Enterprises Ltd the owners of Foodtown, Woolworths, and Countdown supermarkets. His work involves overseeing the Spreads portfolio for the country.
At AIS St Helens, Job studied international business, trade, finance, marketing and human resources. For his research project he contacted New Zealand's top IT companies. This project was called "Issues Relating to Outsourcing IT Needs in New Zealand.”
Job says he chose to study at AIS St Helens because it provided flexible learning options such as weekend classes.
“The MBA programme has a good reputation and AIS St Helens has an easy enrolment system, prompt service and friendly staff.”
Job also enjoyed the International Trade and Development course.
“The skills I learned in this class and on the Leadership and Marketing Principles courses have been useful in my job,” he adds.
In the future Job wants to get into brand management and business process management. He advises other prospective business leaders to also enroll in the MBA programme.
“The MBA programme is recommended with a good research topic in your chosen field.”
Educated: MBA graduated 2003
After life as an AIS St Helens' student Nitin Siva has returned home to India with aspirations of owning his own consultancy firm.
Currently Nitin is a consultant for the Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation. He graduated with an MBA majoring in International Business in August 2003 and remembers his student days fondly.
“AIS St Helens is one of the best institutes. There are also a lot of other international students and the fees are reasonable.”
As an international student, Nitin says he benefited academically and socially. He gained new business knowledge and learned about marketing and management. Personally, he gained patience and self-confidence and became more independent. Nitin is particularly grateful for the international friends that he made and says he has learned how to cooperate with and understand other people better.
Nitin says at AIS St Helens the class sizes are small and the lecturers give attention to every student in the class. He also rates the AIS St Helens facilities and student life highly. He particularly enjoyed the library, gym, dormitory and the student parties.
Now that Nitin is back home, he is applying his MBA skills in his consultancy work. His advice to other students is: 'hard work pays off.'back to top
Educated: MBA graduated 2005
Altaf Husein says an MBA to give him that extra edge in the workplace.
“Although I've done engineering in industrial electronics, I realised I needed some managerial skills. That is the reason why I am doing an MBA.”
Altaf has several years experience in the information technology industry and has been a divisional manager of projects for an IT services company in India.
He chose New Zealand as his study destination because he likes the lifestyle and regards the education system highly. Although two other reputable institutions accepted him as a student, he chose AIS St Helens as his first choice.
“The structure and content of the AIS St Helens MBA course is of high quality and practical. You can also meet people from all over the world.”
At AIS St Helens Altaf was a student council representative. He says having an MBA will help him in the future. Eventually he wants to own his own IT company or work in the foreign trade business.
“IT is an international business and my MBA course is helping me understand how businesses operate internationally.”
Altaf admits although it can be challenging working and studying at the same time he says it can be done.
“In India they have a passive style of teaching, whereas here students are encouraged to participate. I have also learned how to strategically place information systems to enhance productivity and give a company the competitive advantage.”
Altaf also adds another advantage of the MBA programme is that students can attend weekend classes.back to top
Born: Whangarei, New Zealand
Working: Project Manager for National Institute of Studies and currently also starting up her own business
Educated: MBA in International Business
When Juanita Helg embarked on an MBA at AIS St Helens she stepped into a foreign world.
Not only was going back to school after 13 years somewhat alien, but she was surrounded by classmates hailing from totally different countries. Sitting next to her were students from as far afield as China, India, Bangladesh and Indonesia; students who held vastly different attitudes, opinions and cultural beliefs.
The experience inspired the mother of one to step out of her 'New Zealand mindset' and think globally. Now the 32-year-old MBA graduate is starting up her own business creating educational resources for countries all over the world.
” At this stage I'm trying to set up networks with institutions around the globe so I have a better understanding of what resources are required. In particular, I'm looking at Christian books and materials for kids,” says Juanita, who is of Ngapuhi descent.
“ I don't see myself actually having my business up and running until early next year because I've really got to do a lot of research.”
Her focus is currently on international networking and it's this, she says, which is one of the biggest advantages of studying at AIS St Helens.
“ AIS taught me to think wider. Studying there made me really aware of different cultures and how wonderful all these people are that come over here. They have such strong work ethics and I formed such close bonds; I could go anywhere in the world now and have somewhere to stay.
“ I also established some valuable networks for business. In five years everyone I studied with will be doing something important in business, will be in a position of power. What better networks are there to have? It's a foot in the door on a worldwide scale, you'd never get that if you just studied with Kiwis. I feel really privileged to have been part of an environment like this.
“ I loved studying in the multicultural environment and I love working in it too.”
Juanita's first job after completing her MBA last year was with a company called Ora Ltd. She was taken on to assist with the start-up of the operations side of the business and eventually became Operations Manager.
“ It was totally multicultural which I was quite accustomed to through the MBA so I felt really comfortable in that environment. I think the skills I gained while studying with people from other cultures really helped staff members at Ora Ltd who were coming into the Kiwi environment for the first time.”
After six months Juanita decided she wanted to move away from the operations side of things and utilize her MBA more, so she resigned.
“ I didn't actually have another job to go to. I decided to look at doing my own business. Throughout the MBA programme you're always encouraged to be more creative and entrepreneurial. It's just that it took me six months after graduating to realise what I really wanted to do!”
While in these early stages of starting up her business, the bubbly West Aucklander is also working part-time as a Project Manager for the National Institute of Studies.
“ I feel really blessed that I have been fortunate enough to gain work quite easily.”
But it is not just good fortune. Juanita is dedicated, passionate and inspirational; so it's not surprising companies have been so quick to snap her up.
Prior to studying at AIS St Helens, Juanita worked for 13 years at Work and Income New Zealand. She had no previous tertiary experience and was accepted onto the MBA programme as a Special Admission, partly due to her extensive work history. Academically it was sink or swim... and Jaunita swam for gold.
Not only was she valedictorian at her graduation last September but she also received a PTE (Private Training Establishment) Association Leadership Award.
The enormous energy she put not just into her studies but also into her MBA class as a whole made her stand out from the rest. While at AIS she took on mother-figure proportions. Motivated by a self-confessed maternal instinct, she regularly baked cakes and muffins for her fellow students and invited them home for traditional Kiwi barbecues.
An avid touch rugby player, Juanita even extended her hospitality into the sporting arena, organising an MBA class 28 touch rugby team and entering them in a season-long corporate competition.
“ I hoped touch would show them the real Kiwi lifestyle, especially from a Maori perspective. It's a huge game for Maori. As a family unit you participate, it's the whole whanau concept.
“ I formed such close bonds with my classmates and I learnt so much from them about different cultures. I really wanted to give something back that they could take home. From a Maori point of view, memories are the best thing. I wanted to give them the opportunity to remember New Zealand, not just their school life.”
For Juanita, school life couldn't have been better.
“ I originally started part-time but it was so painful to wait a month or five weeks for my next MBA class. The time just dragged. I loved it so much that I decided to go full-time. I just love learning. It's been a step into a world of continuous growth for me.
“ The MBA really built my confidence. From the very first module my confidence grew. The tutors teach you how to research and look into other opinions. The value of academic studies is that they give you an in-depth understanding of how you come to a decision or idea.
“ It was just great being a student. It's the greatest indulgence you can give yourself, such a good feeling to give yourself that intellectual power.
“ And now that I'm working I realise how much I learnt through the MBA. I understand so many things. I can think at the same level that directors are thinking. I feel like I'm contributing, I'm doing something significant. It's a lot of fun.”
It's quite clear that Juanita gains a strong sense of well being through both her family and her work.
“ For me it's about trying to balance being a mum and being able to go out and grow something for myself.”back to top
Aspiring: to work and study in America
Educated: MBA in International Business
Study hard and make progress every day. That's the advice MBA graduate Xiaonan Xu gives to those thinking of hitting the books here at AIS St Helens.
He definitely adheres to his own advice. When Xu first started at the institute in 2000, he was in the lower levels of our English Language Centre. However he advanced quickly, completing the pre-MBA course and starting his MBA in May 2001.
With the MBA now under his belt, he has headed off to Boston, USA, where the rest of his family live.
“ I hope to get a job there and also continue with some part-time studies,” he says.
Xu has devoted a lot of his life to the classroom. In addition to the qualifications he gained at AIS St Helens, he has Diplomas in Financial Accounting and Industry and Commerce Management. Xu also boasts eight years work experience in three different companies so he's no stranger to the business world either. In fact, he worked for Avon for four-and-a-half years before coming to New Zealand and used the company for his MBA research topic. Through interviews, questionnaires and other techniques, he looked at “How to Enhance the Performance of Avon (China) Chengdu branch, by the Improvement of Customer Service.”
Xu describes Auckland as “a clean, huge city” and chose to come here because of the nice weather, kind people, high quality education and low tuition and living costs.back to top
Educated: MBA in International Business
An MBA and a TradeNZ Internship were not what 25-year-old Zuricka Azavedo once imagined for herself.
The adventurous woman from Goa, India, dreamed of becoming a pilot. She flew a Cessna 152 Aircraft as a hobby during high school and then enrolled in Aviation School. However, the exorbitant cost of lessons forced her to pull out of the programme.
Fortunately Zuricka harboured more than one passion. Information Technology was near the top of her list so instead of pursuing a career in the skies, she opted to jump onto the IT wave which was taking India by storm.
After gaining a Bachelor of Computer Science from Karnataka University, she landed a job at an American call centre in Bombay. However Zuricka soon realised in order to attain her professional goals she needed to further her qualifications and gain some international business experience.
With this in mind, she headed Down under, enrolling in a Master of Business Administration (MBA) in International Business at AIS St Helens.
That was 18 months ago. She's now completing the final stages of her research project which looks at the barriers the wine industry faces in regards to conducting their business on-line.
At the same time she's got a top-notch job working full-time in the IT sector for TradeNZ, a government agency which helps New Zealand export to the world. It offers Internships every year to tertiary level students. After some help from the AIS St Helens Industry Liaison Officer and eight months of weekly phone calls to the TradeNZ General Manager of Client Services, Zuricka's persistence finally paid off. She was offered a TradeNZ Internship.
She hasn't looked back since.
“ The first position I had with them was trying to get exporters onto marketnewzealand.com, but later my position changed more to the training side of things. Now I assist the account manager and offshore posts, training them in how to use the marketnewzealand.com system.
“ The job is fun. It's a small team and all the people are really supportive. It's really good to have relevant business experience as well as my MBA qualification.”
The AIS St Helens MBA can be completed full-time over two weekends per month for 15-months. Although Zuricka found aspects of her studies difficult, she said it was also very valuable.
“ You're left on your own a lot which was a little difficult. It's hard to absorb everything in two days worth of classes and then go back home and read books about it. But if you know what modules you want to concentrate on, it's really fun and it definitely gave me a proper picture of what international business is all about.”
Armed with her qualifications and the skills and experience she's gaining at TradeNZ, Zuricka is well on her way to realising her goal of becoming a business analyst. She also plans to open her own company delivering e-commerce solutions to small businesses, starting here in New Zealand and then taking it overseas.
With the determination, passion and perseverance Zuricka possesses, she's sure to be a huge success.back to top
Working: Business Development Executive, Intercall
Educated: Master of Business Administration
For Tavake Na'a, job hunting in New Zealand was a fruitless experience. But a quick skip across the Tasman in 2000 and the job offers came pouring in. The 30-year-old Tongan quickly landed a job as an Account Manager in the Sydney office of I.T. company, Drake International. He spent a year there before working as a freelance consultant and has now been snapped up by Intercall, a multinational dealing with audio/Internet conferencing for Asia Pacific. Tavake is now earning big bucks in a high-powered job which involves meeting clients, promotions, marketing and establishing company infrastructure - not to mention a little wining and dining.
A graduate from AIS St Helens' MBA programme, Tavake says his two years of study were invaluable for his career.
His MBA research project looked at the impact of cultural diversity and management leadership within multinationals.
"I wanted to find out what the percentage of minorities working in MNCs was. It was very low. That encouraged me a lot to go out and show my face and say you can't change me," he says.
His international outlook made AIS St Helens the perfect place to study as it boasts students from all corners of the globe.
"I really wanted to get into the international focus after my MBA. It helped me a lot to be exposed to that in my classes rather than joining the workforce and getting a shock."
After working in the hospitality industry for quite some time, hitting the books again and planning a career change was a tall order for Tavake.
"I wanted a change from the hospitality industry - I knew there were bigger and brighter things out there. Doing my MBA was very hard though. Sometimes I stayed home and cried.
"I didn't have a life whatsoever outside of my studies. All I could see was my end goal."
Tavake admits there were times he felt like quitting.
"I had copies of a motivational motto pinned up all over my house and I used to wake up every morning and say the motto to keep me going."
He says the staff at AIS St Helens also played a big role in motivating him and keeping him firmly focussed on his studies.back to top
Educated: Master of Business Administration
Bharat Jadhav is a businessman. Based in Mumbai, India, he imports cars from Japan, electronic products from Korea and pens from China. So when he decided to do an MBA, he was keen to find a course which had a strong international focus, to assist him in his work.
Bharat researched more than 20 MBA programmes in a variety of locations, including Australia, Europe, and Ireland, before finally settling on Auckland's AIS St Helens.
His main reasons for choosing AIS were the international focus and the fast-track programme, which allows students to complete their MBA in just 15 months. He was eager to get through his studies quickly because he had a family business to manage.
Auckland, the largest city in the country, also gave him useful exposure to work within multinational companies.
Bharat praised NZ for its eco-friendly environment and peaceful lifestyle, which he said, was conducive to study. The standard of education, he said, was on a par with Europe or America.
In fact Bharat loved studying in New Zealand so much that he has now opened several offices in his home country to encourage other Indian students to follow suit!back to top
Educated: Master of Business Administration
After graduating in "Foreign Trade in English" at Jiaying University, Zhang Liqing worked as a Marketing Assistant Coordinator in China. She decided to study the MBA at AIS St Helens because she wanted to build her own business in the future. "At AIS St Helens, I had the chance to meet many different people; they enhance my communication skills and I felt the study environment was friendly and warm.
"The MBA was very interesting and challenging. I spend much time on reading and research. I suggest that future MBA students read more relevant business essays before starting on written assignments."
Zhang Liqing is now living and working in America.back to top
Working: Product Manager QDI Computer (UK) Ltd, Legend
Educated: Master of Business Administration
Well before he'd even finished his MBA the highly ambitious and motivated Marco received several job offers.
He opted for a position with Legend Computer Systems Ltd., one of the largest computer companies in China. Legend has offices in six countries and within the next five or ten years it plans to make it into The Fortune 500, a list of the world's wealthiest companies.
Marco is based in London, where he carried out his three-month research project for the company last year as part of his MBA.
"To travel around the world has been my ideal thought since I was young," he says. "I want to see how other people live. In my childhood, it was the Cultural Revolution. No one knew how other cultures lived.
"Coming to London is good for my CV and for my experience. After four or five years maybe I'll move to Australia or NZ. It won't be a problem to find a job there with that experience."
Marco has a long history with New Zealand. He first came here in 1992, braved the cold in Dunedin for a year and got his Permanent Residency. At that time however there was a recession and Marco couldn't find work so he headed back to Hong Kong for four years. There he worked as the General Manager for a company that provided advanced hotel computing management systems to top quality hotels.
When Hong Kong was returned to the Chinese government in 1997 Marco headed back to NZ, the day before his four year Resident's Visa was due to expire.
Back on our sunny shores, he hit the books, studying Business Communication at Unitech and doing two English for Academic Study courses, one at Unitech and the other at AUT. To finance his studies, Marco has dabbled in car trading and home development, but says it was a struggle because of the weak Kiwi dollar.
Doing an MBA was always one of his dreams. Before coming to AIS St Helens, he was accepted onto the Massey MBA programme and had a brief stint in Palmerston North.
"I went to Palmerston North for a week or two but it made me feel sick. It's a small town, I had no friends, the classes were very theoretical and very focussed on New Zealand stuff."
So he decided to move back to Auckland and study for his Masters in Business Administration at the more internationally focussed AIS St Helens. It's a move he hasn't regretted.
"I learnt a lot from this programme. It gave me a good overview, helped me see the big picture. It also taught us how to reach our goals through survey, research and analysis."
Marco has some words of wisdom for students contemplating doing their MBA here at AIS St Helens.
"Set up a long-term goal for your MBA and have at least five years relevant work experience before you do it, especially two or three years of managerial experience. This is important because in the MBA programme you need to contribute, so other students may benefit from your experience.
"You also always need to think about the books you read and the lectures you hear so you can understand them and relate them to your past work experience."
Marco says his New Zealand education set him in good stead for job hunting. Many of the big Chinese companies with overseas offices are specifically looking for staff who understand both Chinese and Western cultures and who have also taken advantage of MBA or business studies.
Marco is confident he'll quickly achieve his dream of becoming a general manager for a multinational IT company.
"I think I'll achieve that in five years. After that, I could probably be a well-known consultant or a company doctor, coming into companies to solve their problems."
Whatever his future holds, with that strong will and focus, you can be sure Marco ZhiHong will be a striking success.back to top