Twenty-five years after its founding, Sacred Heart Luxembourg continues to enjoy rapid growth, offering the only U.S.-accredited MBA program in Luxembourg and hands-on experience in global business.
“Twenty-five years ago, it was not possible for managers to pursue an MBA in Luxembourg,” says Alfred Steinherr, academic director and professor of economics and finance at Sacred Heart University’s Jack Welch College of Business in Luxembourg. “They would have had to be away from their jobs. The idea here was to create a program that would allow young managers to combine their work with an evening education, leading up to an MBA. The whole program was designed to make it easy to do that.”
Indeed, the program’s flexibility is part of what continues to attract students—so many, in fact, that enrollment has doubled over the last five years alone. This flexibility also extends to program offerings, which includes certificates in addition to the customary MBA.
From the program’s beginnings in the early ’90s—with the contributions of retired professor Rawlin Fairbaugh, who conceived of and founded the Luxembourg MBA program, and Board of Trustees member Egide Thein, among others—the focus has been on providing opportunities for hands-on experience in global business. Full-time students participate in nine-month internships, gaining invaluable work experience in recognized companies.
Students have had a significant role in the Luxembourg program’s growth as well, especially through their accomplishments. One graduate is now the general manager at Ampacet Europe, and another is the artistic director and general manager of all theaters in the city of Luxembourg. A graduate who worked for Goodyear created a spinoff of the company. “This is the entrepreneurial spirit in the program,” says Administrative Director Antoine Rech.
In a signature cross-disciplinary segment of the program, students study particular aspects necessary for the success and expansion of a real company by exploring how product-planning, financing, marketing, accounting, production and management all come together. Moreover, professors teaching these students have had responsibilities in industry, as well as doctorate degrees from leading universities.
Management Professor Mary Trefry, who teaches courses in both Connecticut and Luxembourg, serves as a liaison for the U.S. and Luxembourg MBA programs. “Based on hundreds of conversations through the years with students and alumni,” Trefry says, “I know that their MBA studies in Luxembourg’s multicultural environment—and, more recently, with fulltime colleagues coming from across the globe—have provided incredible opportunities for their individual growth and evolution.”
John Petillo, president of SHU, highlights the global impact when he says, “We are proud of our history in Luxembourg. Our students are able to establish relationships that enrich industries and communities around the world.”
For more information on the Jack Welch College of Business in Luxembourg, click here.