CAIRO: Access MBA, a communications campaign based in Europe, held its bi-annual masters tour on Saturday to recruit bright Egyptian students that are looking to pursue higher education in the business field.
Each year, in April and November, Access, which is a part of the independent communications agency dedicated to the field of Education holds a recruitment event in Egypt and invites potential candidates who meet with recruitment officials from some of the top business schools in the world.
“We hold our event in several cities in the region to help our participating universities recruit students with potential; tomorrow, we will be traveling to Amman and Beirut,” said Dorothée Maillard, Access MBA Tour and Access Masters International Event project manager.
This year, the participating universities in Egypt included HEC Paris, the American University in Cairo, Manchester Business School, Athens University, HULT International Business School, ESLSCA French Business School in Egypt, and IE Business School based in Madrid.
“There are a lot of candidates with potential in Egypt who are motivated to study abroad and these clients would like to recruit Egyptian candidates,” said Maillard. “We have about 1000 potential students who apply to register for the event and we choose the 300 top candidates.”
While each year Access usually saw over a dozen universities participating in the event, this year there was a drastic decline due to safety concerns after Egypt’s January 25 Revolution.
“Last year we had 14 universities from all over the world, however this year because of Egypt’s recent events, only seven came and others cancelled including Nottingham University,” said Maillard.
Sonja Hein, director of recruiting and marketing at HULT university, which is ranked among the top 20 business schools in the United States, points out that despite the political unrest, they decided to come to Egypt anyway.
“Egypt is an important market, the safety situation after the revolution was a concern, but we called our sources here and they confirmed that the country was fine and safe,” said Hein. “We see a lot of interest here, there are a lot of bright students in this country and we would like to have them with us.”
Despite their potential and interest to pursue degrees of higher education, Hein feels that Egyptian students have some obstacles to overcome.
“Finance is the candidates’ main concern, and to be considered for MBA, candidates have to have at least three years of work experience and know English,” Hein said. “To have the ability to afford the costs of studying abroad or pursuing a masters degree in general, that’s a problem.”
Rofaida Shaker, an employed candidate who wishes to obtain her MBA, said she heard about the event and was eager to follow up and attend because she has a lot of concerns when it comes to what school she should choose.
“A lot of questions come to mind, I searched for several schools in Egypt, for example the AUC or ESLSCA, a French business school in Egypt,” Shaker said. “AUC is over LE 120,000 for an MBA, while ESLSCA which is one of the top European business schools is much cheaper; these are questions I hope to find answers to today.”
Shaker feels that acquiring her MBA will put her in a better position when competing for jobs in the future so he hopes to make the best decision.
“I want to do this the right way, this will really affect my chances and job opportunities so I want to carefully study all my options,” she said.