Meeting Students’ Expectations
and Schools’ Capabilities
An interview with Dr. Matthias Straetling
Executive and Admissions Director, University St. Gallen
About University of St. Gallen
The University of St. Gallen is a leading business school in the German-speaking area. Founded in 1989, it became a fully-fledged business school in 1911. Today, the school has the largest management faculty in the German-speaking countries, and a 5,000 full-time student body. St. Gallen offers a full range of undergraduate, postgraduate, executive (both degree and short-term) and doctoral programs. It is the first university in the German-speaking area to offer an independent international MBA program.
Could you tell us about your MBA program?
The MBA program of the University of St. Gallen (MBA-HSG) is amongst the first independent full-time MBA programs offered by a university in the German-speaking countries. We hope to build on the unrivaled reputation of the University of St. Gallen by offering an English-language full-time MBA program, which we hope will get ranked amongst the leading international business schools in the coming years. The MBA-HSG has been designed as a highly integrative program and offers an unprecedented proximity to practitioners, taking advantage of the very close ties to the Swiss and German business communities. The MBA program combines large and high-quality faculty with small classes. The program lasts twelve months, which is significantly shorter than many other leading MBA programs. With more than 14,000 alumni worldwide, the University of St. Gallen has the most powerful alumni network of all universities in the German-speaking area, and MBA students will have the privilege of joining and benefiting from this network. On the extracurricular side, participants can enjoy the proximity to the cultural and business capitals of Europe, in addition to possibilities for summer and winter sports in the vicinity of St. Gallen.
What type of candidate are you looking for?
Each year 40 to 80 students are selected for the MBA-HSG Program. All students who meet our basic requirements will be evaluated based on their past achievements and their potential as responsible leaders. The University of St. Gallen invites students with outstanding credentials and a commitment to leadership in management to apply to the MBA.
What makes your MBA unique amongst business schools?
We feel that the intensive nature of the program, with the small class size and the high faculty-student ratio ensures a high-learning environment. Besides, the excellent reputation of the University of St. Gallen translates into significant career possibilities.
Do you have exchange possibilities?
Pursuing an MBA in St. Gallen offers an opportunity to go on exchange to carefully selected partner schools, without prolonging the duration of the studies. We have current partnerships with Babson College, USA, and Nanyang Business School, Singapore.
How global is your MBA, and what is your school doing to reinforce this position?
We target a class size of 40 to 60 students comprising 20 different nationalities. We lay a lot of stress on candidates with varying backgrounds.
Dr Matthias Staretling
Do you have any advice for students looking to get an MBA?
We would like students to acquaint themselves very closely with the program they are planning to apply to. Only the right fit of the students’ expectations and the schools’ capabilities and offerings can lead to a successful learning environment.
We would advise candidates to make themselves susceptible to learning situations in which their personality is exposed to peers and lecturers in the view of the challenges laying ahead.