Full-time MBA Programme

An MBA is a carefully designed experience that encompasses academic curriculum, career services and personal growth experiences. Here you will find an overview of our MBA experience, and see how the highlights fit together in sequence. We have grouped our highlights into three types:

Key Skills:

These highlights show how the academic curriculum can help you develop the full range of skills required in top management

Career Development:

These highlights show how our Career Services team can work with you to accelerate your career in the direction you want to go

Personal Growth:

These highlights show how our MBA experience can create ways for you to challenge and enrich yourself beyond academics

September

Core Phase

Welcome to your MBA year. There is a high level of energy as you get to know new classmates, transition into a new routine as a student, and settle into a new home. This month sets the tone for your year. It is important to formulate personal goals, to ensure you make the most of your experience in the programme. As a class, you decide on extracurricular activities which will shape your year, to be organised with a given budget provided by the University. Amongst these activities you must include a charity initiative. The year ahead is yours to be actively shaped. You will encounter a lot of reading and assignments in your Core Courses, which often needs to be completed over weekends. Companies will begin visiting campus regularly to present to the class in the evenings, followed by networking sessions and a light snack. Therefore you will find yourself based in St. Gallen with a full schedule. There is no easing into your MBA!

International Management
4 weeks
Understand the issues that Multinational Corporations face in both mature and emerging markets
Global Business Environment
4 weeks
Acquire new tools to analyse market opportunities and threats, and identify all relevant stakeholders at play
Outdoor Day
1 day
Leadership excercises are conducted during an interactive day spent in the Swiss Alps
LIFO®-Method
1 day
Be assessed on your behavioural strengths to raise self-awareness in working with others
Company Presentations
12+ weeks
From mid-September to December, companies present on campus weekly, followed by networking events
Join Clubs
1 day
Find a University club you are interested in and immerse yourself into a hobby, topic of interest or network outside the MBA
Plan Year's Initiatives
1 day
The class is encouraged to raise money for a charity, which will be matched with money to spend by the class - it's up to you to decide what to do with it!

October

Core Phase

The MBA experience is in full swing. You will be taught in a mix of pedagogical styles, including cases, academic lectures, guest speakers, group work and essay writing. Your primary focus is handling the workload of reading, assignments and group work in your Core Courses. The MBA programme is designed to be challenging. There may be times when the speed of the programme or the amount of work due is outside your comfort zone. By rising to the challenge you can discover new limits and improve your time management. Each student must find his or her own balance between MBA life and personal life. Career Services is also well underway. We have created a wide range of innovative professional development offerings, such as Leadership Excercises and Communication Training, which are designed to prepare you for success in your future post-MBA roles.

Accounting & Controlling
4 weeks
Become literate in financial accounting and how it allows you to make better strategic management decisions regarding operations
Principles of Modern Capital Markets
4 weeks
Understand how financial markets work, and know what are the main financial instruments available to managers to steer financial trends
Competitive & Corporate Strategy
4 weeks
Know the important frameworks and theories of business strategy, and confidently apply them in practical contexts
Networking Training
1 day
Learn appropriate ways to reach out to new and existing contacts, and build a lasting network
Projecting Your Leadership
2 days
Professional actors introduce you to stage-based rehearsal techniques to help you practice new leadership and communication styles
Communication Training
1 week
Lola Martinez, a CNN reporter, will work on your public speaking and presentation skills, including body language and voice
CV Review
5 weeks
With the help of workshops, counselling and IT we create an effective CV
Swiss Business Etiquette
1 day
Advice on topics such as dressing to impress, following business lunch formalities and conducting meetings in Switzerland

November

Core Phase

This is another full month of work before you have a break in December. Days tick by as you work with classmates and professors to navigate the Core Course material. During this time you select the Leadership Training courses you want to attend, to start working on your leadership skills. Companies continue to visit campus, so alongside the Leadership Training courses, there are numerous corporate contacts to be made. We are proud to provide the change for over 100 corporate connections to be made each year! You may notice that you struggle with some courses, while finding others more familiar. It is through the relationships you build with your classmates that you can smooth out the ebb and flow. Whether you find yourself asking for help or helping others, November is a time when bonds are strengthened. Following the communication training you received last month, we now let you put those learnings into practice through our interview training. Our career development offerings are designed to be complementary and sequenced strategically.

Marketing & Communication
4 weeks
Use concepts and frameworks to better define your organisation’s market positioning and segmentation
Organisational Behaviour & Leadership
4 weeks
Have a multitude of approaches to managing oneself, teams and organisations, and know which ones are appropriate or inappropriate for a given individual or group
Leadership in Practice
1 week
Top companies train you in specific leadership skills, based on their best practices; choose 5 days, each with a different focus
Interview Training
4 days
Learn to effectively prepare for and answer motivational, technical and case-based interview questions
Assessment Centre Prep
6 weeks
Through one training day and weeks of self-directed practice, you sharpen skills in interviewing, presenting, analysing cases, working in groups... this is not easy!
Get to Know Your Peers
6 weeks
Your MBA peers will force you to challenge existing assumptions, see new perspectives and learn new things about yourself
Expand Your Comfort Zone
6 weeks
Find your limits pushed intellectually, socially and time-wise; the MBA environment will let you build new capacities

December

Core Phase

The start of the month brings the final push before winter break. You will encounter difficult exams and a hurried schedule, as you try to accomplish academic and personal tasks during a slightly compressed time due to the approaching winter holiday. During December you select your electives for the spring months. You will engage in peer-to-peer feedback, which is a powerful and eye-opening experience. This, coupled with the executive coaching we do in parallel, will give you a lot to reflect upon over the break. The time you have off will give you some separation from the MBA, allowing you to not only reflect on the first few months but also look forward to what lies ahead. December is a special time in Switzerland, as the country becomes festive with holiday season spirit. If you can create some free time, make sure to visit traditional markets with friends, enjoy local food and drink, and absorb the atmosphere of St. Gallen. When your academic commitments are complete for the month, we invite you to get dressed up and join the MBA team, faculty and your Part-time MBA counterparts for a holiday dinner celebration. 

Corporate Finance
4 weeks
Execute and discuss financial calculations and understand how the results can inform corporate strategy
Design Thinking & Case Solving
4 weeks
Frame problems and create solutions that revolve around human behaviour patterns
Peer-to-Peer Feedback
3 days
Moderated by a coach, learn to give and receive candid feedback in constructive ways
Executive Coaching
4 days
Be professionally challenged on your career and life plans in one-on-one sessions; come away with valuable thoughts
Visualisation Techniques
2 days
Learn a key leadership skill: how to use visuals and drawings to influence others and reach a common understanding
Winter Dinner
1 day
After an intense few months, ease into the winter holiday break by celebrating with faculty, staff and the Part-time MBAs
Winter Break
2 weeks
From mid-December, a chance to reflect on your development progress so far and return motivated for more

January

Core Phase & Integration Phase

Refreshed and motivated, you arrive back in St. Gallen for the next leg of your MBA journey. This is the month you finish the Core Courses. The University of St. Gallen’s reputation is built on an integrative approach to management education. It is important to see the interlinkages between the various courses and material you study. This is why we move to the Integration Phase of the MBA. You will start to consolidate your knowledge from the Core Phase into a holistic perspective through the Integration Phase courses. Career Services begins preparing your strategy for the new year, and we provide you with access to all University alumni to begin networking strategically. This alumni access is special, as most universities require you to graduate before gaining access to alumni in the same way we provide access in January. During this time you should also revisit the class initiatives you set in September. It is important to build class bonds, as a strong MBA class leads to a strong MBA alumni network.

Operations & Supply Chain Management
4 weeks
Make management decisions founded in a familiarity with current manufacturing and supply chain best practices
Applied Value-based Management
4 weeks
Apply numeric and financial problem solving tools in practice
Assessment Centre
1 day
Limited to 10 selected students, we simulate the type of assessment centre used in consulting job applications
Career Strategy
1 week
Now that the ‘Exploration Phase’ of Career Services is done for the year, it is time to create your ABC career plan
Access to Alumni
6 weeks
We open access to all 20,000 alumni from the University of St. Gallen to help you network for post-MBA career purposes
Peer-to-peer help
6 weeks
Throughout the year classmates will struggle with different things; giving and asking for help is part of our culture
Class Trip
1 day
We encourage the class to organise a trip; connect with a classmate you haven’t chatted with much, this is a great way to forge or strengthen class bonds.

February

Upon completing the Integration Courses, you must pass the Learning Assessment Week (LAW). This is a rigorous test that is unique to the University of St.Gallen. It was developed by Professor Simon Evenett as a way of ensuring our MBAs truly have gained the ability to view business strategically from multiple viewpoints. The preparation and successful completion of LAW is an intense process. Once you have completed LAW you will see your holistic understanding of business taking shape, which you then bring into another one of our signature programme features: Industry Insights. This offers a deep dive into Banking & Finance, Fast Moving Consumer Goods, Manufacturing and Pharmaceuticals through presentations by industry leaders. February also marks the month where your class competes in the Financial Times MBA Quiz in London. Last year the Top 5 academic performers at this stage of the MBA were selected to represent the University of St. Gallen, reaching the finals against a group of other top European business schools. You will also make preparations to start ramping up your post-MBA job search. Our career development activities are geared towards this.

 

 

Learning Assessment Week (LAW)
2 weeks
Present a case solution, followed by open topic Q&A, testing all Core Phase material over one hour
Industry Insights
2 weeks
Senior level speakers discuss their industry trends and corporate challenges in detail; choose 3 days to attend
Munich Career Mission
1 week
Visit companies in nearby Munich, Germany to explore career opportunities in the wider region
Luxembourg Career Day
1 day
Welcomed by the ambassador, Luxembourg-based companies come to campus to introduce themselves and recruit
FT MBA Quiz
1 day
The top 5 academic performers to this point in the year will represent the MBA in London against other business schools at the annual Financial Times quiz

March

Elective Phase

The Elective Phase begins and you are required to take 5 electives in total. A handful of MBAs will be overseas at partner schools in Singapore or Tokyo for all their electives. For those based in St.Gallen, you can choose to take one elective abroad in London or Copenhagen. March is a critical month in terms of career development activities, as corporate recruitment and hiring activities kick into high gear around Europe and elsewhere. You or your classmates will start to open serious channels of communication with companies regarding post-MBA employment, if this was not already initiated in February. We also host our annual MBA Take Off Day. A large number of corporate recruiters schedule and conduct real job interviews with our MBAs. Last year 114 interviews were scheduled in one day. In parallel you must start submitting your applications to secure an MBA Project. When you enter the elective phase, you will have some weeks where you have no lectures scheduled. If your schedule is well managed, this is an ideal time to experience the alpine regions of Switzerland, especially if you enjoy winter sports. Skiing, snowboarding and snowshoeing can be done across the country, and March will bring sunny spring conditions to the mountains.

Business Model Innovation
1 week
Systematically innovate and develop a business model strategy
International Exchange
12+ weeks
Apply to study the elective phase at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore
Private Equity
1 week
Structure and evaluate buyout transactions
Elective Exchange
1 week
Choose to attend an elective at either Imperial College London or Copenhagen Business School
MBA Take Off Day
1 day
We organise a day full of real company interviews to kick off your recruitment processes
MBA Project Applications
8 weeks
Actively apply to project opportunities offered by corporate partners or find your own MBA Project to work on
German Language
12+ weeks
Compulsory for all non-German speakers, these conversation classes and online modules will benefit you living in Switzerland
Case Competitions
1 day
Case competitions occur throughout the year; represent the MBA, practice new knowledge and meet other MBAs from global business schools

April

Elective Phase

Some students will take electives in subjects they are unfamiliar with, and therefore want to gain exposure to. Other students will take electives in subjects they possess a working knowledge of, looking to sharpen and refine their knowledge from a new perspective. One special elective during April is our annual overseas study trip. Past locations have been Brazil and Singapore. As you work your way through the elective courses, you must shift a lot of attention to the upcoming Corporate Project which runs over the summer. If you have not already done so, you must secure a corporate project over the next few weeks. Career Services can work with you to identify strategic partners and projects that would match you MBA development goals and post-MBA career goals. You may be in process with one or more companies regarding a post-MBA job. Career Services provides ongoing support such as mock interviews. April is a month that is yours to be shaped. Your work load and free time will depend largely on your elective structure, whether or not you have secured a Corporate Project and if you have any critical job interviews.

Global Supply Chain Management
1 week
Understand the theoretical approaches that underpin this sector
Leading for Sustainable Business
1 week
Know how revenue-generating business models can successfully drive sustainability
Business Plan Writing
1 week
Author a business plan through a cycle of iterative assessment and feedback sessions
Managing Across Borders
1 week
Use models related to competitiveness, internationalisation processes and risk management
Managing in a Digital Economy
1 week
Stay updated on the range of digital tools and platforms used in business today
Mergers & Acquisitions
1 week
Understand M&A transactions from multiple perspectives
Study Mission
1 week
One elective is a week-long trip to Singapore to investigate cross-cultural management in an Asian context
Job Applications
Ongoing
During follow up interviews from Take Off Day, also start new applications to ensure a wide choice of offers
Job Interviewing
6 weeks
A lot of companies pursue several interview rounds, so it is important to prepare yourself thoroughly
Mock Interviews
6 weeks
Ask the Career Services team for extra training if you feel you need more practice
Personal Travel
1 week
Whether you’re visiting home or exploring somewhere new, there will be some weeks when you don’t have an elective; take a mini break to refresh, if time allows

May

Elective Phase

Electives continue, as do job applications and preparations for transitioning into your Corporate Projects. Many Corporate Projects will take take you away from St. Gallen and perhaps away from Europe. During May you will start to see members of your class receiving employment offers and securing their post-MBA roles. This month can also take shape differently, depending on electives, Corporate Project and job search commitments. Spring is in bloom and summer is around the corner. You will have days when you can’t believe how quickly the time has gone! One extracurricular highlight to look forward to is the MBA Tournament at HEC Paris, when our MBAs are invited to put on the green and white University colours and represent the University of St.Gallen in a multi-day sports event against other top business schools in Europe. It’s a fun way to show your school spirit and meet other MBAs from across the globe. Continue to meet with your mentor, as he or she will help you identify ways to make the most of your remaining time in the MBA.

Entrepreneurship
1 week
Present and pitch a business plan successfully to investors
Global Account Management
1 week
Use the four elements of Global Account Congruence Model: strategy, organisation, human resources and systems and processes
Impact Investing
1 week
Be able to identify, analyse and structure impact investments
Project Management
1 week
Gain fundamental, globally recognized skills in managing projects
Wealth Management
1 week
Know the industry structure and practices related to serving private banking clients
First Contracts Signed
6 weeks
You or your classmates will be signing post-MBA job contracts in May, if not sooner; many of these result from Take Off Day
Job Applications
6 weeks
Continue to apply for openings or contact companies you are interested in, finding the right post-MBA job can take time
Job Interviewing
6 weeks
Interviews for post-MBA roles will continue during your MBA Project, so ensure you stay sharp while juggling the two
Mentoring
12+ weeks
Meet on a monthly basis with your mentor - a senior alumnus - to discuss your career plans and current hurdles to overcome
MBAT Paris
1 day
Pull on a team jersey and represent the MBA at the annual sports tournament hosted by HEC Paris; all students are welcome to join

June

Project Phase

Your Corporate Project begins, taking many of you away from St. Gallen to be immersed in your research on-site at the company you are working with. This is a quieter period at the MBA building in St. Gallen and you may not cross paths with some classmates for many weeks. For those who are still looking for post-MBA employment, you can stay in regular dialogue with our Career Services team, even if you are abroad. We can help facilitate additional networking and preparation for industry-specific job searching. June also sees the return of our MBAs who were on exchange in Asia.

MBA Project
10 weeks
Spend 10-12 weeks dedicated to a strategic issue in a company; MBAs receive a small fee, usually around CHF 3,000 per month
Use Your Networks
6 weeks
Ask your MBA peers if they can make suitable introductions; also use your existing personal network to seek opportunities
Additional Networking
6 weeks
The MBA can facilitate meetings across Switzerland; or, if you are located elsewhere for your project, with alumni in your area
Assessment Centre
1 day
If an assessment centre is part of your application process, and you did the simulation in January, revisit your practice experience
Case Cracking Practice
6 weeks
Keep working on your case cracking skills and practice up to 80 cases in the year
Reflect on MBA Year
6 weeks
See how all the material integrates in a strategic and holistic way; appreciate a transformational year

July

Project Phase

Your Corporate Project is moving swiftly along and summer has officially hit Switzerland. Many Corporate Projects lead to employment offers, so it is important to maintain or elevate yourself to the highest level possible. Reflect upon the busiest or toughest parts of the MBA thus far, and use that to remind yourself of what you are capable of achieving. The MBA is about building new capacities and venturing successfully into unknown territory. The Corporate Project is a real world opportunity to do this and apply all that you have learned. If you are negotiating multiple job offers or considering an offer in a country where you need a visa, stay in contact with Career Services for support. 

MBA Project
10 weeks
As you work on your project, you may be asked to travel or be based at an in-house location with the company
Ongoing Careers Advice
6 weeks
Career Services is there to help if you have new questions or ideas related to your career plan and post-MBA options
Questions About Visas
6 weeks
For those requiring visas for a job in Switzerland or elsewhere in the world, Career Services can provide advice in many cases
Contract Negotiations
6 weeks
Some of you will have multiple offers; we can help guide you through a decision and contract negotiation process.
Contacting Start-ups
6 weeks
Some of you will consider starting a company; we can assist with access to incubators or other people in entrepreneurship.
Transitioning Back to Work
4 weeks
You will find yourself going back to a more normal work week; use your weekends to enjoy summer and plan your post-MBA transition to the next adventure

August

Project Phase

Corporate Projects are completed and handed in. You must then defend your recommendations and research orally. Once completed in early August, you only have one more day of class left, the Capstone Day. This is the final challenge! It is also a fun event and a chance for the class to reconvene as a whole one more time before graduation. The cap-and-gown graduation ceremony happens in late August. You will graduate along with the Part-time MBA cohort finishing that year, and the audience will be filled with friends, family and dignitaries. Graduation is a time to celebrate, so we also expect you will arrange some special dinners and revel in the moment of your achievement: getting an MBA! If you are still in process with one or more companies regarding a post-MBA job, Career Services can stay in dialogue with you to support. Please let us know when you receive offers or accept a position.

Submit MBA Project
1 day
You submit a presentation and report outlining your recommendations
Defend MBA Project
1 day
You must deliver a presentation and orally defend your research, recommendations and methodology behind the work
Alumni Relations
1 day
If alumni already work for your post-MBA employer, we will connect you; we want you to build upon established networks
Support After Graduation
6 weeks
We can continue to help you as you approach graduation, and even beyond if need be
Capstone Day
1 day
Spend the day solving Team Dynamics problems; see your classmates again after completing individual MBA Projects
Graduation Day
1 day
Celebrate your achievement alongside the friends and business contacts you will now have for life