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# Hard to decide... HK or Toronto

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Hard to decide... HK or Toronto [#permalink]

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28 Apr 2007, 18:21
Hi all,

Just wish to get some input on this... I am currently deciding whether to aim for an MBA in University of Toronto's Rotman Business school or the Chinese University of Hong Kong. I am currently in University of Toronto studying my last year in Engineering and have decided to return to Hong Kong permanently after graduation, the reason why I need an MBA is because Hong Kong is a financial hub and in order to return there I would need an MBA to enter those sectors.

Rotman requires a GMAT of 650, while CUHK requires 640. I believe I can achieve those scores. If I go to rotman I would most likely get a better reputation once I return (being a foreign university), however the connections that I build up there will be fairly useless in HK. On the other hand, CUHK offers much better HK based connections, but the reputation is not as good.

I plan to specialize in finance and accounting if I get into a program.

I also have no intention of going to the US since the tuition is too high, plus I don't know anyone there.

Could anyone give me some good suggestions? Thanks a lot.
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29 Apr 2007, 02:49
I'm not sure about tuition in HK but those in Canada for UoT, with the strong CAD and the high cost of living for a metropolitan city, are just about as expensive as it can get and almost on par with those of US universities.

Indeed, it seems that you would be better off studying in HK rather than in UoT given that you want to go back there after. Maybe you should also consider HKUST as I had many exchange students coming to LBS as part of their program. The alliance gives all student the chance to come and study in Europe at LBS and I think somewhere else in China.

Perhaps an alternative Canadian school which has a stronger reputation in HK would be IVEY as they have a campus there for EMBA. I know among chinese that IVEY is better known in HK than UoT is there.
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30 Apr 2007, 05:29
Paul wrote:
I'm not sure about tuition in HK but those in Canada for UoT, with the strong CAD and the high cost of living for a metropolitan city, are just about as expensive as it can get and almost on par with those of US universities.

Indeed, it seems that you would be better off studying in HK rather than in UoT given that you want to go back there after. Maybe you should also consider HKUST as I had many exchange students coming to LBS as part of their program. The alliance gives all student the chance to come and study in Europe at LBS and I think somewhere else in China.

Perhaps an alternative Canadian school which has a stronger reputation in HK would be IVEY as they have a campus there for EMBA. I know among chinese that IVEY is better known in HK than UoT is there.

If I stay in Toronto I have a house that I can live in, which significantly decreases my expense needed as opposed to going elsewhere.

Visiting London's LBS sounds like an excellent opportunity to get international experience, unique to only HKUST and University of Hong Kong's MBA programs. I am also highly interested in learning in Europe (since I have experience in N. America already), thus it is very hard to make a choice as to which university to go to.

Also just wish to get some background information, for the exchanged HKUST students to your school, does their way of working appears "competitive" to you (ie: Fluency in English, efficient way of working, leadership, etc) relative to students from better school? Or are they significantly worse off?

Thanks
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30 Apr 2007, 12:35
I had a HKUST student working in my study group and I can tell that he was a very sharp guy. I enjoyed working with him and his english was very good (he was actually from India). That friend of mine, whom I still keep in touch with, now works in HK for a large international bank.
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30 Apr 2007, 13:10
Paul, I don't agree that studying at a Canadian university will be as expensive as a US one. For Rotman or Schulich, tuition is almost 1/2 of what US schools charge. Also, rent in major cities like chicago or boston are more than in toronto... I won't even mention NYC.

I struggled for a long time over CND vs US schools wrt working in HK afterwards. Since I'm not 100% where I will end up, I decided to go with the best school that I could get into.

In this case, I would suggest going to Rotman since they are ranked well among international schools. This will carry well later into your career. Also, I'm assuming you are from HK, so sticking with a foreign mba will differentiate u more from the locals. you should also consider getting 1 or 2 years of work exp before returning, so you don't start at the bottom making $10K HKD/month (which is ~$1400USD)
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30 Apr 2007, 14:18
Wow, $1300 USD per month is a very very low salary for someone with a MBA degree, significantly lower than that stated on a survey I read a few months ago on business week, which reports that the average income for a HKUST MBA graduate for the first years (working in HK) being ~$62000 USD (~33600 HKD/month). I am expecting graduates from Rotman to have an even higher salary because of Rotman's higher ranking and HK companies' preference of foreign degree.

On the other hand, I really don't want to stay in Canada for another 2 years upon graduation if I were to go to Rotman, as I would be 28-29 by that time and I don't want to go back so late.

Hard decision to make between 2 years of useful MBA connection and a higher ranked foreign degree.
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04 May 2007, 08:07
Sorry, my numbers were for undergrads starting salary. But you still need to remember that most people work a few years before going into an mba program. Without any work experience, you can expect a lower pay.

I really want to work in HK after my mba also, but I have reservations about how competitive their salaries are compared to NYC. The pay scale is much better if you have substanial foreign work exp.
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04 May 2007, 11:53
Oh right I misinterpreted your idea, yes the beginning salary for an undergrad is very low in HK (especially for an engineering student), I do not intend to return to HK unless I have at least two years of working experience in a foreign country.

If the decision is based only on income however then I would not return to HK, I return mainly because of HK's exciting culture, good climate, and highly advanced infrastructure.
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