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UCD Smurfit School named CEMS School of the Year

  • Date: Fri, Dec 17, 2021

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Friday, December 17, 2021—UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School has been named the 2020/2021 CEMS School of the Year for the first time during a virtual ceremony today. CEMS is the global strategic alliance of 34 leading business schools, over 69 multinational organisations and 8 NGOs that together offer the CEMS Master in International Management.

“This award firmly establishes UCD Smurfit School’s reputation as a global leader in the CEMS Masters in International Management Programme,” said Professor Gerardine Doyle, Director of UCD Smurfit School and Associate Dean of UCD College of Business. “It is a tremendous honour for the School and our students, and highlights our outstanding team of academics and professional staff within the School alongside the relationships we share with partner schools, corporate partners and NGOs.”

The selection of this prestigious award is based on overall student satisfaction across all aspects of the CEMS programme, as well as a vote by the academic directors of the CEMS Schools.

Earlier this year, UCD Smurfit School’s CEMS Masters in International Management (MIM) Programme was ranked 3rd globally by the Financial Times–the highest ever ranking of one of the School’s programmes.

Collaboration and Innovation

"From UCD's perspective, a core strength of being part of the CEMS alliance, and one that we harness, is the collaborative nature of the programmes where Schools act together and learn from each other, all to provide unique modules and experiences of the highest standard. This collaboration proves that we are stronger acting together than alone," said Professor Andrew Keating, Academic Director of UCD Smurfit School’s CEMS Programme.

Innovation is also a major area of focus within the curriculum, and covers topics such as sustainable supply chains, future trends in procurement, consumers in the digital era and the future of work—exploring topics ranging from the gig economy to voicebots, and from the impact of Covid-19 to hybrid working.

Corporate Connections

The course offers an unparalleled connection between the academic and corporate worlds, combining world-leading academic theory and real world expertise of corporate members.

"Dublin is perfectly located for those interested in cutting edge, leading technology as the majority of the world’s major technology companies base their European Headquarters here. As a core element of the programme, UCD Smurfit School has cultivated strong relationships with these firms to help to develop, work with and employ many of our graduates,” continued Associate Professor Keating.

The programme welcomes leading practitioners to deliver various aspects of the curriculum, and also hosts various events throughout the year. These range from company visits, skill seminars with both professional trainers and CPs such as Google and Meta (Facebook) and mock interviews with the likes of Salesforce, Google and Vodafone, to name but a few.

“UCD Smurfit School has worked hard to build an outstanding reputation and is now recognised as a leader in corporate relations and engagement,” continued Professor Doyle. “A key strength has been the College’s ability to leverage their access to multiple European Headquarters in Dublin ranging from technology, consulting, finance, medtech and more, to build on a core CEMS value of business embeddedness.”

Sustainability and Renewable Energy Finance

In addition, UCD Smurfit School has developed a core competence in running and delivering the best regarded and student rated business projects within the global CEMS Alliance. With a recent focus on sustainability, diversity and inclusiveness, the programme offers a number of course options for students studying the CEMS Masters in International Management. Modules include Work and Employment in a Global Economy, Leading Corporate Reputation in a Digital Era, Sustainable Supply Chains, as well as Social and Cultural perspectives on Managing Technology and Change.

In 2022, the School is introducing a new course on Renewable Energy Finance to its curriculum which builds on the impressive statistic that 40% of 2021 business projects involved an aspect of sustainability and responsible citizenship. Meeting the needs of students, the School has welcomed high level speakers such as David Donoghue, the former Irish UN Ambassador who was instrumental in the formulation and agreement upon the UN SDGs; senior personnel from Médecins Sans Frontières; the Chairperson of the Irish Health Service (HSE), and the head of the largest Irish NGO, Concern.

Community Engagement

UCD Smurfit School is actively engaged with the CEMS community as many of the UCD staff have contributed to shape the present and future direction of CEMS. Professor Damien McLoughlin is acting Treasurer of CEMS, Associate Professor Andrew Keating leads the CEMS Curriculum Innovation Subcommittee, Jola Meagher leads the CEMS Language Steering Committee, and Evelyn Wickham is a leading member of the CEMS Programme Managers Committee.

“We worked hard to ensure that students who could not meet in person could still build a vibrant community and develop their CEMS class spirit and network,” said Evelyn Wickham, UCD CEMS Programme Manager. “We held weekly meetings with CEMS Club Dublin to be able to support them in their initiatives.”

“The CEMS Club, with our support, hosted online networking events, case study competitions, social evenings, quizzes, sustainability initiatives, corporate events and also produced a Yearbook, class hoodies and other merchandise. The CEMS Club were particularly active when it came to engaging with Alumni from the Ireland CEMS Alumni Association (CAA) and multinational Corporate Partners from around the world. Rotational events and Alumni talks, with a strong corporate and career development emphasis were held. One Dublin CEMS Talk event even featured the very first graduates of the UCD CEMS Programme. In addition to this, general events for our students in UCD Smurfit also included virtual class tours of our country with live tour guides, events celebrating International Women’s day, online cookery classes, and holiday competitions.”

Active Alumni Network

The CEMS alumni community is active in Dublin with many graduates now working and living in Dublin. In recent years this strong network has been led by CEMS CAA President Francesca Barberio and CAA VP Silvia Cocciolillo who annually welcome new students and help to organise CEMS Club Dublin events, including ‘Let’s Talk CEMS’ and alumni networking events.

Alumni are also invited to participate in various curriculum elements including Global Citizenship Seminar, Business Projects, Professional Career Development workshops and skill seminars as well as guest speakers.

Learn more about the UCD Smurfit School CEMS Masters in International Management here and apply today.

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