Montpellier Business School
03 May 2023

International experience: 24 students from the MBS Bachelor Program fly to Dakar to discover entrepreneurship in Senegal

International experience: 24 students from the MBS Bachelor Program fly to Dakar to discover entrepreneurship in Senegal

In March, 24 students from the MBS Bachelor program went to meet the students of the MBS Dakar campus, which will soon celebrate its 10th anniversary. As part of this educational trip, whose objective is to understand the dynamics of the African market, the students had the opportunity to meet with many business leaders and committed entrepreneurs in order to develop their skills in digitalization and leadership.

DEVELOPING THE INTERNATIONAL DIMENSION FOR ALL STUDENTS IN THE PROGRAM

MBS has built its courses with an increasing level of internationalization with the possibility of doing an academic exchange of 6 to 18 months during the course, or obtaining a double degree abroad.

To allow students in their final year of study to add a new international experience to their CVs, MBS has organized a one-week immersion trip to the MBS Dakar campus as part of an elective entitled “Doing Business in Africa”.

“The objective is to offer all students the opportunity to dive into another culture and to open up to other managerial approaches in business. This educational trip also aims to change perceptions of entrepreneurship and digitalization in Africa, and to bring students from both campuses closer together,” says the Director of Programs.

DIGITALIZATION AND ENTREPRENEURSHIP ARE AT THE HEART OF THE DISCUSSIONS

The program of the trip included a business game, three company visits and three conferences on entrepreneurship, transformational leadership and digitalization.

“For the choice of companies, we chose the photovoltaic energy, electric car assembly, tourism and land development sectors. The objective was to offer the students an encounter with sectors that use advanced technology and include a CSR dimension,” explains Dr. Iliya Komarev, Director of the Bachelor Program.

The students were able to identify the characteristics of the Senegalese market, and discover the processes of supply chain management and international logistics, as well as the challenges of managing cultural diversity and regional differences.

AN IMMERSION THAT WAS VERY WELL PERCEIVED BY THE STUDENTS

In parallel to the academic agenda, everyone was able to share convivial moments of discovery around the Senegalese culture. The reception was organized around a Buddy System, to pair up the students of the Dakar BDE with the MBS students and create links to encourage integration. “We spent unforgettable moments with our French classmates and lived a rich and moving experience in just a few days. We built strong connections and shared skills, which made this event one of the most memorable moments of our university life,” said Abdoulaziz Nikiema, a second-year Bachelor of Business Administration student in Dakar.

“We learned a lot from each other and we were able to discover the development potential of the tourism sector in Africa. This moment spent together is unforgettable and we encourage MBS to develop this type of activity”, adds Ismaël Kone, President of the BDE and MBS Dakar.

“This trip brought me a lot on a professional level first, thanks to the conferences where I could become aware of the economic, social and environmental situation of Africa in general and of the potential of this continent. But it is especially on a personal note that this trip had an impact, thanks to the students of the Dakar campus, the faculty and the staff of the school. They made sure that we had a 100% authentic and memorable experience and this mission was a success” concludes Alexandra Houtmann, a student in her last year of the Bachelor program in Montpellier.

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