ALEXANDRA NGUYEN

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My choice

Why did you choose to study at CBS, and what made the choice easy/hard?
After completing my upper secondary, I decided to take two gap years, where I ended spent 8 months in Asia. This ended up influencing my decision as I came to realise how much I enjoyed meeting and learning about new cultures. After my first gap year, I was very much in doubt about what I wanted to study. The choices were between medicine, design or different programmes at CBS, and it ended up being IBA after I considered the different educations and programmes and their future possibilities.

What options did you consider in terms of academic content, and how did you come to a conclusion?
I was drawn to the business perspective and knew I wanted to work within business and preferably with something that opened for some international opportunities.

What practical things did you consider?
There are a number of practical considerations that you must remember in relation to moving to Copenhagen, such as housing, financial aspects such as considerations about exchange and saving up for this, as well as whether you have the desire or opportunity to work while studying.

What were your thoughts on social issues and making new friends?
I was really nervous about moving to a new city where I did not have many acquaintances. It may seem silly now that I have been so nervous because I am so lucky to have met many people both Danish and international!

What were your expectations (good or bad), and how were they met?
IBA is a 4-year education where you have to learn either Chinese or Japanese. Therefore, I had an expectation that it would be academically hard and time-consuming. I was right because I spent a lot more time at CBS’ library than the average.

CBS is known for having undergraduate programs where one generally has to have a high GPA to be admitted. Therefore, I had an expectation that it will be competitive. That was both right and wrong to some degree. Everyone puts a lot of effort into the things that matter to them will always strive to do their best and get the best result, however, my fellow students have always been really good at helping each other across the years as well.

I had had two gap years, so I also had an expectation that I might be one of the older ones in my class, therefore, I was nervous about whether I would get along well with my new fellow students. There is, of course, a small difference between people whether one is the same age or with a large age difference, and I have not been able to feel that.

My programme

What is the most exciting thing about your programme?
The most exciting thing about IBA is the Asian perspective. When we have cases, it is based on Asian companies or Western companies in Asia.

What is the most challenging thing about your programme?
The linguistic part! You really need to be self-disciplined in learning Chinese or Japanese.

Are you particularly fond of the academic or social aspects of your studies?
The social aspects play a very important role for me!

What do you plan to use your degree for?
At IBA, I learned a lot about important industries in Asia. IBA has taught me a lot about opportunities and therefore I want to look at business development with particular focus on the Asian market. I am starting this year on the master’s program Management of Innovation and Business Development at CBS and I hope to be able to build onto the knowledge, which I gained on IBA.

What makes you and your programme a good match?
I love to travel and meet new people and cultures. IBA provides a good opportunity for this and there are quite a few international students. There is a compulsory exchange stay on the 2nd semester and then there is the opportunity to get an internship or on another exchange semester on the 7th semester.

What has surprised you about your programme or CBS?
How much it actually requires. Your professors compare a full-time job to study, and I agree with that.

Have you experienced something which was difficult at first, but you overcame it anyway?
I found it hard at first to get used to studying again.

What is tough in your programme?
Learning a new language has been very challenging.

My advice

1

Before you choose a programme, it is important to familiarize yourself with what the programme is about. There are a lot of places where you can find information about the different programmes. I, myself, used websites such as ug.dk to get a general overview of an education, and then I used the university’s website to read more specifically about the programme. There is also a smart function on cbs.dk, where you have the opportunity to compare the educations in diagrams

2

The best advice is to familiarize yourself thoroughly with the programme that you choose to apply for. Most education has some fancy names, but it is the subjects that you need to look at and really ask yourself if it is something that sounds interesting to you

3

You do not necessarily have to come from HHX or wear a suit to fit in at CBS or IBA, but you must have an interest in business.

4

You should come to the intro days. They form both a good foundation for friendships as well as group work at the programme.

5

Being a university student can be overwhelming in the beginning! Enjoy the first few months and get yourself friends or routines which you really like. I have become much more structured after I started at CBS, and it makes my everyday life work due to planning and coordination of school, work and hobbies

STUDENTS AT IBA

Hear the students' reflections on choosing their study programme and being a student on IBA. Feel free to contact them with your questions.

CHRISTINA STOLZ

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