Baruch’s Zicklin School Leverages Partnerships to Add Value |

Baruch’s Zicklin School Leverages Partnerships to Add Value

By Francesca Di

Updated September 4, 2018 Updated September 4, 2018

Baruch College Zicklin School of Business in New York teams up with other higher education institutions and corporate partners to provide students with unique opportunities, says Fenwick Huss, Willem Kooyker Dean of the Zicklin school. The school’s global dual-degree programs and required Business Consulting Program for graduate students aim to take partnerships to the next level, according to the school’s website.

Huss says, “Our main objective is to maximize the value to students.”   

Partnerships as a business strategy

While business schools have always featured import-export partnership models, the joint-degree programs Zicklin offers move beyond this. Instead of an exchange, students from both schools are immersed in both communities. In each program, students start out at the school overseas and then return to Zicklin midway through. At Zicklin’s New York campus, students complete the specialized masters before returning to the school overseas to finish the original degree program.

At a time when graduate business schools are struggling to prove their worth, partnerships allow schools to reach a wider group of students and provide offerings they wouldn’t otherwise have. While some are making predictions about the survival rates of business schools moving forward, these partnerships diversify the portfolio and makes it stand out.

Joint dual-degree programs

Zicklin has dual-degree programs with schools in China, Israel, and Italy. In China, the school has degree programs with multiple universities that cater to a range of students studying in undergraduate and masters programs.


Specifically, for graduate students, it offers MBA/MSF programs with Peking University HSBC Business School, Renmin University of China, University of Science and Technology Beijing, Shanghai International Studies University, and Xi’an Jiaotong University. Students begin studying the MBA at the Chinese school, then head to New York to start and complete the masters in finance, before returning to China to finish the MBA.

There’s great demand for MBA hires among corporate recruiters in China; talented MBAs are becoming more commonplace, and graduates want to emphasize what they bring to the table. This dual-degree program permits participants to specialize and offer a refined skillset to potential employers.


Students in the MBA/MS program with Israel College of Management Academic Studies in Tel Aviv have a different experience. They start their MBA in Israel, come to Zicklin’s New York campus in the middle of the program to complete a masters of entrepreneurship, before returning to Israel to finish the MBA.

This is particularly well suited to MBAs in Israel, as the country is known for its high-tech startups and being conducive to new ventures.

“Students learn how to launch a startup and grow it,” says Huss. “They have the opportunity to live and work in another country for an entire year.”


In Italy, Zicklin partners with University of Bozen-Bolzano and University of Padova offering students a joint dual-degree MS/MSF (it’s the newest partnership with its 2018 start date). Students start in Italy, move to New York to complete the masters in finance, and finish the MSF back in Italy.

“Having partnerships is critical to us as we prepare our students,” says Huss. “They have to have an understanding of evolving business models and how they differ across cultures. Also, it gives our faculty the opportunity to have experiences in other countries that have a different business climate and culture.”

Real-world consulting projects

Back at home, Zicklin students in traditional full-time and part-time MBA programs also benefit from another kind of collaboration – with corporate partners, who participate in the required Business Consulting Program. Students work on a 10 to 12-week project with deliverables and timelines to help an organization solve a real challenge it’s facing. This capstone project means students analyze data and make actionable recommendations to executives.

Jennifer C. Loftus with Astron Solutions said in a video on the school’s website that she was impressed with the work Zicklin students did because they provided more analysis and suggestions than she anticipated.

“These projects make them work ready,” says Huss. “The skills they pick up are transferable across industries.”

In addition, the consulting projects provide students with a new network they wouldn’t usually have. They can serve as internships do to foster a relationship and act as a longer job interview.

In the end, Zicklin leverages these partnerships with potential employers of its students and other universities abroad to provide additional value. It helps differentiate Zicklin from other business schools, says Huss.

“Our tagline is New York smart, world class ready,” he adds. “These partnerships help us achieve that.”

This article was originally published in August 2018 . It was last updated in September 2018

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Written by

Francesca Di Meglio has written about higher education for two decades. She covered business schools and all aspects of management education for what became Bloomberg Businessweek from May 2004 to December 2013. Di Meglio was the consultant editor for the book Admitted: An Interactive Workbook for Getting into a Top MBA Program (85 Broads Publishing, 2011), which was written by admissions consultant Betsy Massar. In addition, she is a family travel and parenting blogger at the Italian Mamma website

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