The world of logistics and supply chain management is on the move. Today’s supply chains are spread across several countries or even continents. Manufacturers, distributors, retailers, and customers all have to deal with global networks and implementing new technologies. Reason enough for the KLU faculty and staff to develop a new international MSc degree program.
The new program, which is currently in the accreditation process followed by government approval, will have a two-year curriculum. The TriContinental MSc in Global Supply Chain Management will offer prospective students a unique opportunity to study at three different universities on three different continents. “We will be cooperating with University of Tennessee at Knoxville (UTK) in the United States and Tongji University in Shanghai, China,” explained Helga Beste, the KLU program manager who is responsible for planning the new MSc degree program. Throughout the program, students will be taking classes in the economics of business strategy, transportation & distribution, applied statistics, operations management, and innovation and risk management, to name just a few fields. “Our students will be learning the latest concepts and analytical techniques in supply chain management,” Beste said. “The way these methods are viewed and may be implemented on each of the three continents Asia, Europe, and the Americas will be core to this degree program.”
Apart from academic content, the new MSc program will put a strong emphasis on practical experience. The students will be interning in global companies towards the end of the two years. “We will help our students develop a holistic understanding of global supply chain processes, taking the perspectives and needs of all the relevant actors into account,” added Beste. “And by combining the expertise of all three universities, we will be able to give our future students a first-class education in the field.”
Creating an international learning experience
Excellence in both the academic and practical aspects is one of the TriContinental Master’s strong features. But what makes KLU’s new program unique is its international approach. Each of the three participating universities will have its own quota of students to send to the program. So not only the faculty of the three universities will ensure the program’s internationality, but the students will, too. Beste is aware that individuals from so many different backgrounds may take some time to figure out how to best work together. But that’s exactly what those responsible for designing the MSc program are aiming for. “Everybody involved in this program needs to talk about intercultural understanding and really live it. Students will find themselves dealing with different settings, different languages, and different cultures; in their academic and everyday lives.” In order to maximize its students’ intercultural understanding, the TriContinental MSC will also contain modules on how to conduct business in Europe, China, and the United States. After all, graduates from the program are highly likely to experience complex intercultural business settings in their careers as supply chain managers. As Beste puts it: “Supply chain management is a global business, so we are creating a global program to teach it.”
KLU’s new MSc program at a glance
Duration: 2 years
Semester 1 at KLU, Hamburg/Germany
Semester 2 at Tongji University, Shanghai/China
Semester 3 at University of Tennessee (UTK), Knoxville/US
Semester 4 reserved for internship and thesis
Credit points: 120 ECTS
Prerequisites: BSc or equivalent in a related field
Accreditation for the program by FIBAA is under way: we expect the TriContinental MSc program to start in September, 2017.