The Hamburg School of Business Administration is offering full and partial scholarships for their Corporate MBA, and so are many other companies and schools all around Germany. To those interested in taking part in such a program, here is a Kenyan who is at HSBA and she shares her experience doing the Duales Studium and a few tips to those interested in applying. If you have any questions pertaining to the program, you can post them as comments here or on the article and they will be answered.
Tell us a bit about yourself.
I’m a Kenyan girl living, working and studying in Germany. I study at the HSBA (Hamburg School of Business Administration) in their Bachelor’s Duales Studium.
How did you find out about the program?
When I was in Studienkolleg, on a ‘University day’ ( a day in which Unis come to introduce themselves and so on…). HSBA was there and they presented the uni and what it offers. Afterwards I went and asked for more information on how one can get in the school, what qualifications are needed e.t.c.
How was the application process?
For the application you send in your documents to the company you are interested in. Processes differ from company to company, I guess depending on the size.
In my case I had to do an ‘Einstellungstest’…Maths and German and IQ Test, then an assessment center then a personal interview.
What are the requirements for a Kenyan interested in the program?
Requirements depend on what the University wants. In my case it was a minimum of 10 points in Maths, English and German in the Studienkolleg Exam.But it also depends on the company.
Of course they always want people with good grades, so the better the grades are the better the chances. Personality also counts.
How does the program work?
Theory Phases are between 10-12 weeks, you just have Uni at the time. This runs from January to March and August to October.
Afterwards you have the ‘Praxisphase’ for 3-4 months. This runs from April to July and October to December.There are no Semester breaks, you only have 24 free days in a year which you are only allowed to take during the praxis phase.
Why did you pick this program instead of the “traditional” Uni?
I picked Duales Studium because I find ‘traditional Uni’ too theoretical.
Secondly, when I was in Studienkolleg I used to work alot because I needed the money and I couldn’t imagine 3 more years of Uni like that i.e. working long hours and having to study. Also the jobs were tiring, I was waitressing at the time, so I thought if I have to work to be able to get by then it has to be something ‘useful’, something that has to do with what I want to do after Uni.
I was also concerned about graduating from Uni without having any working experience. I calculated how old I would be at graduation and thought….eemm I have to do something.
What are the differences between this program and the “traditional” Uni? (Read: Traditional Uni vs Duales Studium)
Like I said, traditional Uni is too theoretical meaning you just learn things from the book and don’t get to practice/experience them.
The Unis are bigger, which means more people therefore the professors don’t even know you personally.
Plus our theory phases are only 10-12 weeks long, the other Unis 4-6months..
What qualification do you get at the end of the program?
You get a Bachelor of Science in what you are studying and you can also do the IHK Prüfung of what you are studying (if there exists such an Ausbildung) so in the end you have 2 qualifications plus the work experience
How long does the program take?
What has been your experience so far?
It’s been good because you get to meet alot of different people who work for different companies and it’s interesting to share experiences and best practices from different companies. Also there are alot of other things other than studying, alot of extra curricular activities, clubs etc so I can’t complain. Work is also great and the switching between work and uni is good especially after the exams when you are so drained. Work is then like ‘Erholung’ (the relaxing phase) to help you get your energy back.
What challenges do you face in your program?
It’s stressful sometimes especially when the exams are around the corner, you have to study a lot in such a short time. When we are at work we have to write reports for Uni so you always have something to do. And this can be quite tiring.
What tips would you give anyone interested in this program?
Be confident and believe in yourself you have to convince a company to hire/and invest in you….(you usually send your application to companies that partner with the school you want to study at and there is a lot of competition because they only want maybe 1 or 2 people 😉 perfect your German and be resilient
Your program is at a very expensive private school, how do you finance it?
I’m lucky that I got a full scholarship, my company pays the whole tuition. This varies, there are full and partial scholarships. For partial scholarships, students have to pay a percentage of their tuition fee. We also get paid at work and it’s an amount that you can get by with.
Would you recommend this program to others?
Yes, I definitely would.
What have you learnt so far from your experience?
I’ve learned to be more organised (not that I wasn’t before) but I somehow have to plan more so as to make sure that I make the most out my time, which I really don’t have. I’ve become more confident and audacious.(Auwi….I think hapa naeza endelea na speech ya self-help ;P lol! so ntawachia hapo!
Duales Studium isn’t the stereotype it’s potrayed as; ati “overworked prone to burn out students who don’t have a life”. Ofcourse we study a lot because we have to but we enjoy ourselves while at it. It’s a worth while program to take part in.
Interested in studying at the HSBA? they are offering an MBA in Corporate Management.