Trinity Western University

Crossing the Pacific

Trinity Western University and Tianjin University of Finance and Economics partner to provide MBA students with an enriching educational and cultural experience

Thanks to a new partnership with Tianjin University of Finance and Economics (TUFE), Trinity Western University’s highly regarded international business MBA program has expanded its reach across the Pacific. The Great Wall MBA will be delivered in Tianjin, China’s fourth-largest city, by top faculty from both institutions.

“We’re capitalizing on the strengths of each university and giving students exposure to the faculty expertise of both,” explains Murray MacTavish, Ph.D., MBA director for Trinity Western University, a research and teaching university in Langley, B.C. “TUFE is highly regarded in China for finance and economics, while we’re well known for our strengths in values-based leadership, cross-cultural management, international business law, operations management and global marketing and strategy,” Murray adds.

Trinity Western’s relationship with TUFE is long-standing, having collaborated on EDGE, a BBA-to-MBA degree and international exchange program, since 2006. Trinity Western has also maintained connections with Tianjin through academic research ties since 1990. And now, with the launch of The Great Wall MBA, Trinity Western has become the only university authorized for foreign delivery of an MBA program in Tianjin.

Similar to an executive MBA model, The Great Wall MBA is designed to accommodate learners who work full time. Each course is delivered over two consecutive weekends, Friday night through Sunday, plus follow-up coursework. A total of 14 courses are offered one at a time, four to six weeks apart, over a period of 18 months. Trinity Western faculty will deliver eight of those courses, flying over for two-week residencies to teach, provide out-of-class support to students and offer added value to the local business community through consulting and lectures.

Participants will learn in a student-centred, Western-style learning environment and earn a Canadian degree from Trinity Western, which will appeal to many Chinese nationals keen to study in Canada as well as expats on assignment in Tianjin, says MacTavish. Moreover, “students get access to top-quality international faculty without having to travel themselves.” And, capped at 35 students, classes are significantly smaller than most other Chinese and Canadian universities, meaning learners benefit from closer interaction with faculty.

“This is an exciting new venture for Trinity Western,” says MacTavish. “Our MBA program here in B.C. has already grown from 17 students in 2007 to more than 70 in 2013; now we have 24 students in this first cohort in Tianjin, and many more interviewing for the January start.”

Trinity Western consistently receives grades of A or A+ in Globe & Mail’s annual Canadian University Report and high rankings in Maclean’s University Rankings issue. Also Trinity Western was named the top business school in B.C. by the Globe & Mail last year for overall education quality and career preparation.

“Students have a transformational educational experience at Trinity Western—they find it highly valuable and incredibly life changing,” says MacTavish. “The Great Wall MBA program is a chance for business executives in China to have this same opportunity for a high-quality Canadian education, and this partnership opens up new opportunities for international study for students at both campuses.

“I think we have a great awareness of global business and working in different cultural contexts,” says MacTavish. “The global marketplace is smaller than ever, and, by focusing on business internationally, which Trinity Western does, I believe we will help students understand how to better engage in business across the globe.”

The Great Wall MBA program will officially launch in Tianjin on October 17. Senior leadership of both universities, government officials and members of the local business community will attend a ceremony hosted by Trinity Western at the TUFE campus.

Trinity Western’s international business MBA program is also offered on a full-time basis at the school’s campus in Langley, along with two part-time MBAs specializing in non-profits and enterprise (entrepreneurship/intrapreneurship).