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Strengthening the bonds of international education 

Chinese DBA image
Former Otago Vice-Chancellor Professor Harlene Hayne with Executive Vice-Dean of the Overseas Education College at SJTU, Shang Zhengang.

The latest Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) class of Otago’s students based at Shanghai Jiaotong University (SJTU) is preparing to graduate next week.

Among the graduates is the Executive Vice-Dean of the Overseas Education College at SJTU, Shang Zhengang.

“I learned that organisational change is ordinary, that we should face the change. I learned from my research how to lead the team during a changing environment. The education industry is going through turbulent times and my team is facing the challenge with the confidence to reach our goals.”

Shang says he is extremely grateful for the guidance he received during his studies from the Shanghai DBA office, and also from his supervisors and other teachers at Otago.

Shang completed his thesis on Research on the Relationship between Organisational Transformation and Employee Perception and Commitment – A Case Example on Overseas Education College of Shanghai Jiaotong University.

He says his project will benefit him in his role at SJTU, and he is looking forward to putting what he learned into practice.

“I learned that organisational change is ordinary, that we should face the change. I learned from my research how to lead the team during a changing environment. The education industry is going through turbulent times and my team is facing the challenge with the confidence to reach our goals.”

Shang says he’s received highly positive feedback on the course from his classmates.

“I can see that my fellow classmates have benefitted immensely from studying an Otago DBA.”

Shang attended an orientation at Dunedin as part of the first Chinese cohort of students in 2016.

He says he has 20 years of experience in the education sector, and he is looking forward to applying the new knowledge that he’s gained to his work.

Launched at Otago in 2016, the DBA is designed for business professionals who are looking for a challenge. Students all continue to work full-time and resolve critical problems for businesses and industries through the application of research and theory in a practical business environment.

DBA Programme Director Dr Sarah Carr says it has been great for all involved in the course, which has helped to strengthen the existing ties between Dunedin and its sister city, Shanghai.

Due to travel restrictions the Shanghai-based DBA graduates couldn’t graduate in Dunedin, so the University is hosting a virtual graduation for these students on Wednesday 19 May.