9 Reasons to Get Your MBA in Switzerland | TopMBA.com

9 Reasons to Get Your MBA in Switzerland

By Nicole Willson

Updated March 1, 2021 Updated March 1, 2021
This article is sponsored by the University of St. Gallen, a leading European business school based in Eastern Switzerland. Check out their international MBA program

1. High Quality Education

Switzerland is known for it's high teaching standards and attracts some of the world's top intellectuals, thanks to high salaries and high quality of life. Switzerland is also one of the OECD countries that invests the most money in education and research. Switzerland's status as a European business hub (see below) means that Swiss MBA programs attract high caliber guest speakers, which makes for a great learning experience as well as excellent networking opportunities. Most universities in Switzerland are public, which means that tuitions tend to be more affordable.

2. Switzerland is a European Business Hub

More multi-national corporations are choosing Switzerland as their international base. Switzerland is among the world's 20 wealthiest countries and 15 fortune 500 companies are based there. In addition, many large corporations -- such as Nissan, McDonald's, and Google -- have moved all or part of their European operations to Switzerland. As an MBA student, you may get to work with these companies directly since many Swiss university courses have links to area businesses, particularly in the banking, chemicals, pharmaceutical, and hospitality industries.

3. The High Percentage of International Students in Switzerland

You will probably have to manage or work with people from another country at some point in your career, since most companies are international or global. That's why it's important to develop cross-cultural management skills, and one of the way to do that is to attend business school with classmates and professors of different nationalities. Switzerland is a good place to do this, because even though it's roughly the size of Virginia, it is also home to 50,000 international students. In fact, 21% of students and 40% of the faculty at Swiss universities come from other countries. At some universities, international students account for as much as 40% of the student body.

4. Switzerland is a Great Location for MBA Travel

Switzerland is located in the heart of Europe, and is also a center for international travel with Zurich, Basel and Geneva serving as international aviation gateways. As a result, it's easy to travel to other European countries for international field studies and internships. And when you need to take a much-needed break from studying, Switzerland's central location also means that you can quickly get to European vacation destinations.

5. Switzerland is a Great Place to Develop Foreign Language Skills for Business

Switzerland is multi-lingual, which makes it an ideal location for studying and practicing languages. First, Switzerland has many language learning schools, plus four national languages: German, French, Italian, and Romansh. The high number of international students means that you will also have opportunities to learn and practice non-Swiss languages as well.

6. The English Language is Widely Understood

While living in a foreign country is a great way to learn another language, you still need be able to communicate with other people on a regular basis. Luckily, many Swiss natives understand English, particularly those living in the German-speaking part of the country as well as Geneva. Many Swiss MBA programs, such as the one at the University of St. Gallen, are taught entirely in English.

7. Switzerland is an Outdoor Lover's Paradise

Switzerland is a major destination for outdoor sports. In fact, it's the first place where people skiied for fun. Zermatt, the village at the foot of the Matterhorn, is considered to be mecca for skiiers, snowboarders, and mountaineers, due to its status as the "peak of all peaks" . St. Moritz offers skiing and snowboarding, along with health treatments. Hikers of all levels can enjoy the Alps and its stunning views in the summer months.

8. Switzerland is a Great Travel Destination

Known for its cultural variety, living in Switzerland can give you a taste of what it's like to live in three different countries: Germany, Italy, and France. Switzerland is full of charming towns to explore, such as Neuchatel which is known for its fountains, and Grimentz which is known for the traditional timber houses you often see in pictures of Switzerland. Spa lovers can relax in one of Switzerland's many thermal baths. If you are into sightseeing, Switzerland has several UNESCO world heritage sites including the frescoes of Muhair and the abbey complex of St. Gallen. Lausanne and Bern are home to some of the world's most beautiful cathedrals.

9. Switzerland Has Great Food

Switzerland has become so synonymous with gourmet food, that this article would be incomplete if we didn't mention it. There's chocolate and cheese Switzerland has become so famous for, and you can visit factories for both. Gruyeres is known for its great cheese which visitors can explore by following their Cheese Factory path. Maison Cailler, Nestle's luxury chocolate brand, allows people to tour their factory in Broc, Gruyere. Swiss food isn't all chocolate and cheese though. Switzerland's cultural variety is reflected in Swiss cuisine, which varies from region to region -- fondue in the French part, Rosti (a hashbrown-like dish) in the German part, and saffron risotto in Ticino.
This article is sponsored by the University of St. Gallen, a leading European business school based in Eastern Switzerland.

This article was originally published in July 2013 . It was last updated in March 2021

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Nicole is the SEO manager of TopMBA.com, as well as a contributing author. She holds a BA in history and sociology, and a master's in library science. Aside from her work for QS, Nicole is a long-time contributing editor and administrator for WikiHow.