About the benefits and challenges of an Online MBA

Dr. Michael Mihut - MBA-Student European University

In 2013, while working for the World Health Organization in Geneva, I joined the EU’s Online MBA program in International Business. I wanted to develop a better knowledge of business processes, improve my leadership skills and further develop my network around the globe.

In my work, centered around portfolio and policy management in infectious diseases of poverty research, it is important to master both technical skills and those related to management and finance. Ever since I joined (I am currently in my second term), I have felt the support of my organization, which is important considering I am employed full time.

Before joining, I scanned various offers; I found that taking courses individually did not possess the same value as taking a full degree. Fortunately, the European University offers the OMBA, which is a combination of “live” distance learning and on-site experience.

Some of the most exciting moments of the first term happened during these site visits. We were given the opportunity to visit a state-of-the-art facility of a worldwide famous manufacturer and understand first-hand their business model, as well as have discussions with some of their senior managers. We also received some very interesting insight from the head of one of the most prestigious banks in Switzerland.

I must say that probably the most enriching encounter I had during the first term was discovering the vast range of expertise and backgrounds my colleagues had and the chance I had to learn from their experience and stories. Our group brings together students from all the continents – literally, other than Antarctica – who have worked in different environments (public, private, government, U.N.), which contributes to a pretty broad perspective when we work in teams and interact during webinars. Studying an online degree, scattered around the world, we learn how to work in virtual teams, with innovative communication tools, which makes teamwork and learning more effective and efficient.

If I was to give advice to someone considering an online degree, it would be to carefully assess their availability because, even though it is an online degree, it requires a great deal of focus, effort and time. The program this far has been both rewarding and demanding.

Dr. Michael Mihut
World Health Organization – TDR
The Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases
Portfolio Management Officer