05 Apr 2017 21:09 IST

My term at LIBA was marked by many new experiences

From studying management in an emerging economy to absorbing the cultural scene, I learnt a lot

At the outset, an opportunity to study abroad, in India, seemed like an exciting journey and the experience of a lifetime. Having visited many countries in Europe and the US, going to a developing country in the Orient was an offer I just could not refuse. With this in mind, I accepted admission into Chennai’s Loyola Institute of Business Administration for the second year of the PGDM programme, which was during the term from January to March.

The faculty gave us a lot of assignments and work (such as case study, data collection, presentation, and the like) which kept us awake. The professors were friendly, understanding, and helpful.

My stay for a few months on the quaint campus of LIBA, centrally located in the the bustling city, is an experience etched in my mind and heart.

Learning management in an emerging economy

Our programme at LIBA was interesting and filled with many learning experiences. It exposed us to management studies set in an emerging economy. Coupled with case studies and discussions, the course offered a whole new dimension to management studies.

One of the factors that differentiated the management programme at LIBA from the French universities is the class hours — from 8-to-8. The extended classroom sessions, which were mostly open discussions, taught us the functioning of a developing economy, the different ways of doing business, and the industrial climate in India. The many seminars and conferences organised by LIBA gave me an opportunity to understand the business environment and the strategies of doing business to suit a mass market like India.

Diversity in classroom

One of the interesting experiences at LIBA was the diverse set of peers I had the opportunity to work with. Since students came from varied backgrounds, culturally and educationally, the group projects we worked on gave me various perspectives and opportunities to learn different approaches to solve problems.

Cultural experience

Another thing that I noticed was the constant emphasis on excellence and ethics. It was discussed in classes, conferences and many forums. LIBA emphasises and shapes tomorrow’s managers with a strong foundation in ethics.

I was concerned whether I could survive locally without knowing the language. But I did manage with lot of help from my classmates. Though I did not interact with the public very much, I was often helped by strangers to hail an autorickshaw, or find a restaurant.

During the term, there were also many events organised by students. We had conferences, celebrations (Pongal and Onam), and a rural visit. For Pongal, I wore the traditional dress — dhoti and jubba — and ate from a banana leaf with bare fingers!

In a nutshell, I acquired knowledge in classes, experienced life in the city, enjoyed curries at restaurants, and was exposed to a whole new world. Yes, India is a kaleidoscope. Everywhere you turn, you see a new view. LIBA gave me this opportunity to see, experience and enjoy India. I recommend that everyone should travel and study abroad when they get a chance to, because travelling is in itself an educational experience unmatched by any other.

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