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mba diary

Jenny Perla’s first stop in her MAIB program is the University of Milano-Bicocca in Milan, Italy.

Jenny Perla is a Canadian student taking the new master in international business development (MAIB) program offered jointly by the University of Milano-Bicocca in Italy, Centennial College in Toronto and Alliance University in India. The Windsor, Ont., native will study in each of the three countries for a semester and emerge from the 18-month course with three degrees, including an MBA. Her first stop is Milan, Italy.

I'm slowly grasping the reality that I've left Toronto and am starting a new adventure – an adventure, I hope, that will open many new pathways for my future. As the first Canadian student of this exciting two-year-old program, it is an honour to be accepted into a course that will give me skills to negotiate across cultures and learn new business cultures and practices.

Recently, research indicates that employers are looking for graduates with resilience, the ability to negotiate cultures and an understanding that there are many pathways and perspectives.

The MAIB program is targeted at students who are high achievers, interested in how business is done globally, open to "real time international learning experiences" and wishing to study with highly motivated students from around the world. It is specifically designed for new and recent graduates with an undergraduate degree who want to internationalize their education in business, commerce or management.

The program promises to take students to the next level of graduate business education, combining the fundamentals of international business with the experience of learning, living and working in a global environment. The projects and learning experiences will focus on doing business internationally as an entrepreneur in their own business or intrapreneur within a company.

It is a program "where the world meets" and presents business practices from the West, South Asia and the European Union. The first cohort had students from Italy, China, Mexico, Brazil and India. They are currently studying their last semester and internship in Canada.

The second cohort, in which I will participate, has students from the United States, Italy, England, Romania, India, Ghana, Russia, Mexico and Canada.

In the next few weeks and months, I will be sharing my experience and challenges as a Canadian student abroad – stay tuned.

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