The Global Executive Master’s in Hospitality Leadership we run in conjunction with ESSEC Business School is a great way for hospitality industry professionals to incorporate best practice into their current roles, as student Margrey Sy is finding out.
While there are many reasons why an Executive Master’s is a great choice for students, one of the main motivations they cite is that it enables them to learn while still holding down their day job.
For Philippines-based student Margrey Sy, although that was an important consideration, the opportunity to go back to school and develop professionally, learning from experts in the field and her fellow students, was too good to miss.
As the current Managing Director of the family-owned 422 Stonehill Suites Inc. hospitality business, Margrey is keen to find out how she can apply the kind of strategies employed by larger corporations to her own business.
Appetite for growth
“Actually, I was torn between which course to take, either the Global Executive Master’s or an MBA program,” says Margrey. “Luckily, the admissions team assessed my needs and ambitions and recommended the Executive Master’s. What really mattered to me is that there is an environment of wanting to grow and develop and, during the residential week, I recognized that desire in my classmates, so I feel I made the right decision.”
“I was torn between which course to take, either the Global Executive Master’s or an MBA program. Luckily, the admissions team assessed my needs and ambitions and recommended the Executive Master’s. What really mattered to me is that there is an environment of wanting to grow and develop and, during the residential week, I recognized that desire in my classmates, so I feel I made the right decision.”
The residential weeks are integral to the Executive Master’s and, on the Global Executive Master’s in Hospitality Leadership, students enjoy the privilege of spending time at each of the two schools who jointly run it. Margrey has already taken part in the Glion residential week and has taken the inspiration from that experience back home with her.
“I loved how we were able to freely express our work and personal experiences,” she says. “That everyone is engaged in sharing these and their different cultural perspectives is probably my greatest takeaway from the week.
“Also, I’m very fortunate that my classmates are people with varied backgrounds and experience and it’s been really interesting gaining an insight into the corporate set-ups many are working in while they’re studying.”
Now she is back in her native Philippines, how is Margrey adjusting to life as a full-time Managing Director who is studying for a Master’s from two of the world’s most renowned hospitality and business schools?
“Honestly, it was a bit of a challenge for me coming home after the residential week and trying to sort out how to fit in my classes around my work schedule,” she says. “But I was able to adjust and ended up taking at least two hours a day to concentrate on my studies.
“What’s great is that you have the flexibility to adapt your usual routine so you can still attend tutorials and take quizzes. I have had to cut back on my extra-curricular activities now I have important deadlines to meet, but that’s a small price to pay.”
Back to school
The extra workload and curtailed social life means Margrey’s motivation for her Master’s study must be strong. But what is someone who is already a hospitality industry leader, albeit in a family business, hoping to achieve through the Executive Master’s program?
“It has long been my dream to invest in myself through education before I settle down and have a family,” says Margrey. “I think I took the value of education for granted when I was younger and in college, but now I have the drive to learn and develop more. What’s great about this program is that it shows you it’s never too late to go back to school and improve, no matter at what stage of your career you find yourself.
“I don’t think I have any specific expectations about what I’ll get out of the program other than it will help me advance my hospitality career. The networking will of course be useful, especially since there are two alumni associations I can join. And as someone who views differences as opportunities, I’ve really relished meeting my classmates who come from such diverse backgrounds.”
“But I think for me the biggest things that appeal are learning about the wider hospitality industry, discovering what is best practice and finding out how I can apply what I’ve learned to my own situation in my region.”
Join the global élite
The Global Executive Master’s in Hospitality Leadership mixes flexible self-study with four superb residential weeks in Switzerland, France, Singapore and the UK; delivering the skills and knowledge to take your leadership career to the next level.