Anto Liivat, the head of Bachelor studies at EBS, said that the experience of being an exchange student abroad is invaluable for students and employers alike: “Each student should make use of an opportunity to spend at least one semester studying in another country. While studying abroad merely used to give a competitive advantage in the labor market before, it has by now become a natural part of the study process,” Liivat noted.
This is why EBS curricula are going to feature a mobility window for university studies abroad from next academic year. It is intended for the third semester, which students will be able to dedicate to subjects of their liking in any of 60 acclaimed universities of the world. “It must be emphasized that studies in the partner universities of EBS will not increase the overall cost of the student’s education,” Liivat added.
Karoli Hindriks, an EBS graduate and the founder and CEO of the company Jobbatical, which puts employees and employers from various countries in touch with one another, said that studying abroad creates an advantage for the student and the employer. “Living in a different cultural space means learning to see things from another angle. Our team has people from twelve countries, and their backgrounds and experience allow us to think of such questions and challenges for organizations that would not occur to people who have the same background and think alike. Our platform shows that recruiters all over the world are starting to appreciate the employee’s international experience more and more, and it creates an advantage for the applicant,” Hindriks stated.
The mobility window is a semester during which students in Bachelor programs are supposed to study optional subjects abroad, and the credits for such courses completed in a partner university will be recorded as a part of the “home university” curriculum in full. The institutions the most popular with EBS students are Bocconi University in Italy, Copenhagen Business School in Denmark and Monashi University in Australia. Other countries of choice for studying are Spain, Germany and Great Britain.
Students in Master’s programs have another opportunity to broaden their experience in addition to exchange studies: taking one optional subject module to study e-commerce practices in China or the digitizing of industrial enterprises in Germany. Employers will benefit from the students’ experience obtained in foreign universities, too, by allowing employees to telework during the exchange semester and getting personnel with international experience in return.
Estonian Business School (EBS) is the oldest privately-owned university in Estonia with a total of 1500 students in Bachelor, Master’s and Doctoral programs, of whom a third are foreign students. About 20 per cent of the teaching personnel come from abroad, and EBS students can go to one of 60 partner universities around the globe to broaden their knowledge.