Getting out of your comfort zone
Difei Guo made the big decision to move from China to study a master’s abroad in France.
Difei comes from the North East of the country, where winters reach minus 30 degrees celsius in the region, so the cultural shock when moving to the milder climes of Western Europe can’t have been easy.
By jumping out of her comfort zone and grabbing opportunities with both hands, Difei enrolled in the Master in Management at EDHEC Business School. It all started at the undergraduate level, when she traveled to the University of Nottingham to study International Business and work out the direction she wanted to take.
Difei explains, “At that point, I realized I [was] passionate in marketing and branding and I also [had] this urge to explore another culture.” (00:15) This is a clear example of the opportunities afforded to students brave enough to push the boat out and study a master’s abroad.
Why do students choose to study abroad in Europe?
Students from all over the world choose to study in European countries for a vast array of reasons, including:
- International work experience
- High-ranking business schools
- Exposure to new cultures
- Travel and adventure
The term “broaden your horizons” appears so often when talking about studying abroad, it’s easy to overlook. However, Difei gives us a perfect example of what it actually means.
“I did an exchange program in France. And in that semester I realized I liked French language and culture, I liked the lifestyle here, especially the arts and the museums, since there’s always something I really enjoy. So I decided to take a master’s program in France. That’s where I [discovered] EDHEC,” she says. (00:36)
Inspired by her exchange program in France, Difei knew she wanted to continue her studies in the country. For her, the decision to choose the Master in Management at EDHEC was relatively straightforward.
“It’s a top business school [offering a] three-year master’s program to not only give me [a] double master’s degree but also to give me [a] one-year chance to develop a career here [and] have international working experience. So that’s why I decided to take this opportunity,” she explains. (00:55)
But it’s not just the MIM course itself. EDHEC’s Lille campus is simply a great place to be, as Difei affirms: “Actually, if you read through the survey, the most friendly city in France is actually Lille – especially for international students.” (02:12) With excellent links to Belgium, the Netherlands, and the UK, Lille also puts international students in a strategic location for exploring the continent.
What makes the EDHEC MIM so special?
The Master in Management, often called the MIM, reached #9 on the Financial Times Master in Management 2021 ranking. With a reputation for dynamic courses and fast-tracking students to global markets, it’s not just the students who are impressed by the course.
The program begins with a high-level overview of management as a whole, covering technical and personal skills that are valued by employers. The second year gives students the opportunity to gain practical work experience (for around six to 12 months). In the third year of the program, students can choose a specialization and dig deeper into their desired focus area.
Ultimately, it’s the forward-thinking electives that set EDHEC apart. Students can choose from a range of options that reflect the current business ecosystem, including:
- Cognitive bias & gamification
- Industry 4.0 and digital transformation
- Information and fake news
- Solidarity and non-profit organizations
- Graphic design for social media
- How to be a nocode developer
The second year offers two six-month internships to gain real-world experience, build your network, and apply what you’ve learned throughout the degree. However, if you want to double down on your international perspective, you can also opt for a six-month exchange at partner universities as far afield as Italy, Mexico, Australia, USA, Canada, and Hong Kong.
At all levels of the EDHEC MIM, faculty respond to market trends and technological advancements, while collaborating with business partners to make the course as relevant as possible. Students learn through advanced tutorials, lectures, workshops, and seminars, but also get creative with business games, case studies, and entrepreneurship projects for a diverse learning experience.
Is it worth studying abroad at an institution like EDHEC?
The advantages of studying at institutions such as EDHEC go far beyond the critical professional and personal skills taught throughout the Master in Management. The dedicated career center and network of classmates, alumni, and professors expose students to a world that is almost impossible o reach otherwise.
“So far, I have a lot of opportunities,” Difei tells us. “I [got] offers from China, from London, opportunities in Germany, and also I have finished my internship at Amazon in Luxembourg. So I would say if I didn’t have this experience [at] EDHEC, I wouldn’t have these amazing opportunities from different countries.” (01:41)
To summarize her experience, Difei says, “Every time I push myself out there, I grow and I achieve something I could never imagine.” (02:58)
If you’re looking to study a master’s abroad but need a bit more information, contact our student ambassadors! They’re happy to tell you all about their experience, offer advice, and answer any questions you may have.