MBA Students participating in CEU Business School’s annual New York City MBA Module returned to Budapest last week after spending a month in the world’s business capital. Having run for two years as a one-week special Module, this year it was expanded into a whole month for full-time MBA students in addition to the weeklong optional Module  still offered for CEU Executive MBA students.

Launched by Mel Horwitch, Dean of the Business School and Bala Mulloth, Assistant Professor of Entrepreneurship and Innovation, the theme of the Module this year was “Lessons from a Global City – Reimagining Management and the Firm”. The Module is divided into four thematic weeks covering topics such as leadership and innovation, entrepreneurship, finance and consulting, and social innovation and sustainability. In addition to participation and a final review project, students also blogged their experience through weekly updates of the Module.

“For me, the most startling outcome of this Module was the exciting new blends of business thinking and practice that emerged,” Dean Horwitch observed. “Our MBA students are getting a very relevant and different kind of MBA by integrating the very best and most avant-garde of management and entrepreneurial practice with a savvy on what actually works and where the real opportunities are in the fast-growing emerging world.”

Among the companies visited were Ernst and Young, General Atlantic, General Assembly, Brooklyn Grange, NYU’s Center for Urban Science and Progress, WeWork Charging Bull and Bloomberg. A particular highlight for the students was a visit to the NASDAQ Marketsite on June 5 that was also the setting for the “Your Move” New Venture Competition held as a partnership of NASDAQ OMX, Prezi and CEU, with judges from all three institutions participating.

As part of the competition, CEU MBA students assembled into teams, each proposing a new venture, with the finalists choosing projects in IT security, entrepreneurial cafes and cultural and sustainable tourism. Ultimately, the team named “Wymeria,” which proposed launching a tourism company to transform the Mississippi Delta region into a must-see tourist destination, was chosen as the winner by the panel of judges. (Photographs of the event can be seen here).

“Having seen how business is done in New York City fundamentally changed my perception about Europe and Hungary,” full-time CEU MBA student Péter Bogdánffy opined. “This trip was important to highlight some areas where we have to do way more to keep up with the rest of the world."

Full-time CEU MBA student Ersinan Mohammed said of the program: "Our immersion into the New York business ecosystem allowed us to apply all of the fundamental expertise we absorbed at CEU Business School; through the applied learning exercise of New York, we were able to challenge our abilities on the world’s biggest stage. As the end of our MBA program nears, the New York module gave us a chance to launch ourselves into 'the real world' after 9 months of theoretical learning in the classroom. The lectures, company visits, and networking events in New York built a direct bridge to Budapest; this cross-pollination between America and Central Europe has created the opportunity for students returning to their homelands to spread innovation and potentially find the next game changing breakthrough."

One of the main takeaways for students from the experience is that New York is no longer just a financial hub, but that it also supports a thriving startup scene and is one of the major hubs of innovation in the world today. This diversification of the business landscape on the heels of the 2008 financial crisis underscores the city’s resilience and adaptability in the face of adversity.

Faculty and students alike agreed that the Module was hugely beneficial to the participants, who were able to take the knowledge they have accumulated in Budapest, Hungary and compare it to the ideas and innovations they were presented with in New York City.

“Seeing how New York City has reinvented itself since the financial crisis is an invaluable learning experience,” Professor Mulloth observed. “From big-tech firms to small startups, students witnessed how tremendous effort to leverage resources, attract talent, and create public-private partnerships is paying off. My biggest hope for this Module is that it encourages students to take a cue from New York City’s can-do attitude in their own professional aspirations.”

For more details of the CEU Business School MBA programmes visit