What’s It Like to Earn Your MBA in Canada at McMaster’s DeGroote School?

canadian mba

Hockey, maple syrup, the friendliest people you’ll ever meet … all reasons to love Canada. But have you ever thought to earn your MBA in Canada?

More often than not, when MBA candidates think about where to go to school, they tend to scour the U.S. for the best programs. Occasionally, they’ll expand their reach overseas to the top programs in the UK and Europe, but often Canada is overlooked; and that’s a mistake. Canada has become an international destination for MBA students looking for an affordable education with an excellent reputation.

Canadian MBA programs offer many of the same opportunities as U.S. programs, but with some surprising benefits. To get a better idea of what it’s like to go to school in Canada, we talked to Bach Dang, a ’19 MBA student at McMaster University’s DeGroote School of Business.

Dang is an international candidate from Vietnam who earned his Bachelor’s degree at Temple University’s Fox School of Business in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. However, after graduating, when he started looking into MBA programs, Dang decided that staying in the U.S. wasn’t the best option for him. Instead, he looked to the north and chose to head to Canada for his degree. DeGroote was his first choice because it was “affordable for my family and I” and because the school had a “great reputation.”

So, what is it like to earn your MBA in Canada, specifically at DeGroote? Check out our interview with Bach Dang below.

MetroMBA: What attracted you to Canada?

Bach Dang, DeGroote ’19 MBA Candidate

Bach Dang: There were many things that attracted me to Canada, but one of the main reasons it topped my list was the country’s stance on immigration. After graduating with my undergraduate degree in the U.S., I wasn’t able to get a work visa. That hindered my ability to stay. Canada is much friendly than the States in that regard.

In the U.S., I was constantly asked my visa status before I was ever considered for a position. In Canada, that doesn’t matter as much. Companies in Canada are more concerned with whether you fit the position and the culture compared to your immigration status. So, as a foreigner, I’ve had more equal job opportunities in Canada and a brighter future. In the U.S., you have a year after graduating to find a sponsor, or you have to leave. In Canada, you have three years, and you don’t need a company sponsor.

In addition, Canada is very similar to the states regarding culture, economy, and international policies. There’s a clear friendship between the two countries, which makes it easy to transition from the States. 

MetroMBA: What has been the most surprising part of living, working, and learning in Canada? 

BD: I’ve only been in Canada for about seven months, so it’s a little soon to talk in depth, but I can say that one of the things I like most is the environment. I love how friendly everyone is. Yes, people in the U.S. are friendly, but Canadians take it a step beyond. It seems like everyone is willing to help you.

I also enjoy the slower pace of living in Canada. I have more time to reflect on my progress in the program, and to live a healthier, more balanced lifestyle. Though I’ve been really busy with school and looking for a summer internship, I’ve still been able to balance work, life, and school.

MetroMBA: What do you love about the DeGroote MBA program?

BD: Regarding my MBA program, I’ve noticed a willingness to help students succeed, and not just career-wise. The class sizes at DeGroote are fairly small, which makes it easier for professors to pay attention to students, and encourages more open conversations inside and outside the classroom. All the professors at DeGroote are very welcoming and open to giving advice and help when it comes to internships, jobs, coursework, and more.

DeGroote has also been great when it comes to helping me find my summer internship. The school has a job portal where all open positions are posted whether you’re looking for a summer internship, a full-time job, or a part-time job. All you need to participate is a resume, and then you can apply for any job you see.

Also, the career department works very closely with students and companies to facilitate open communication. Even if you’re not chosen for a position, the career center will provide you feedback from recruiters on what they’re looking for and how to improve for the future. There are an incredible number of opportunities available to students, and they update weekly, so I never have to look anywhere else.

Finally, McMasters is a great university, and the DeGroote MBA program is very affordable. This makes it very attractive. Also, it’s very close to Toronto, which is a great city to live in.


About the Author

Kelly Vo    

Kelly Vo is a writer who specializes in covering MBA programs, digital marketing, and personal development.

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