A different type of Executive MBA graduation at the School of Business, Economics and Law at the University of Gothenburg

25 June 2020

On June 12, the participants of the Executive MBA programme 2018-2020 at the School of Business, Economics and Law at the University of Gothenburg graduated from their study programme. In parallel to their ordinary management roles, they have completed a 21-month management training programme focused on leadership and business management in a global market. Due to the corona virus pandemic, the final months of the programme were held online.


“The Executive MBA programme has been a fantastic journey which I am extremely pleased to have had the opportunity to complete. It is a privilege, as an adult, with many years building a professional career, to once again sit in the classroom and have the space to reflect, analyse and learn new things. Since the programme covers such a wide area, I sometimes found myself studying areas that I was already familiar with, but more often I was navigating new areas where I was stretched to broaden my perspective and my skills. I have grown as a professional during the programme and I can now contribute with an even greater point of view in the development of Liseberg’s business. This is my third academic degree and it has undoubtedly been the most rewarding and enjoyable one for me. This is mainly thanks to my 19 co-participants and the sense of community that we have built up along the way. I will have this network of fantastic people with me for the rest of my life”, says Julia Vasilis, Director of Communications at Liseberg AB.


“I still remember the question brought up by Håkan Ericson, CEO of GU Executive Education, in our information meeting 2 years ago, ‘Are you one of those people who take the chance and make it happen, or are you one of those people who say I will do it next year and never do it?’ I am very glad to say that I am the type of person who make things happen and this Executive MBA programme has been one of the most phenomenal experiences I have had. I can definitively say that the programme has helped me gain access to various tools to become a better people and business leader. Obviously, it was incredibly challenging to study and work at the same time, but also incredibly rewarding as well! The open and collaborative environment of the class is what makes this journey fun and an experience of a lifetime”, says Katrina Bendikas Chang, Global Key Account Manager, 3M Automotive Division.


The participants on the Executive MBA programme 2018-2020 originated from seven different countries and from very diverse industries and companies including 3M, Bulten, Emerson, Kjell & Co, Liseberg, SKF, Tilda Fabrics, Volvo AB and Volvo Cars. All the participants had experience of leadership and managerial roles, with educational backgrounds ranging across biology, economics, media, medicine and technology. The participants’ varying experiences and perspectives are always an asset in discussions and project assignments. The group also benefitted from a relatively good gender distribution with 45% women and 55% men.

Just like the concluding months of the programme, graduation day was impacted by the corona pandemic. The presentations of the last term assignments had to be done remotely. Normally, participants on the Executive MBA programme meet at the School of Economics, Business and Law in Gothenburg every third week from Thursday to Saturday. Lectures are held with distinguished researchers and the participants have the opportunity to learn from each other’s experiences and reflections. The global perspective is underlined by the fact that 60% of the lecturers come from prominent partner universities located around the world. The programme also includes two ten-day visits to Asia with lectures at top-ranked universities in China and India.

“It was a different final semester and graduation with this group, since we had to deliver the programme remotely due to the pandemic. The participants’ opportunity to interact with each other was of course impacted but, overall, the transition to online teaching worked well,” says Håkan Ericson, CEO, GU School of Executive Education.

A more traditional graduation ceremony, as well as a graduation party, for the Executive MBA programme 2018-2020 will be arranged later this year.