A Curriculum Without Boundaries

The WBB curriculum is rigorous and provides a solid foundation in business and economics. It also encourages a well-rounded education, requiring liberal arts courses with an emphasis on writing, science and humanities.

The first three years are composed of required courses that focus on a variety of topics according to the country of study and the special strengths of each school. Business and legal courses with regional emphases will help students acquire an in-depth understanding of the nuances of doing business in different global environments. Students will take most of their classes with the general university population, but a class specifically for the cohort will be arranged each year.

Year One: USC

At USC, students will be immersed in business from day one. The first year includes foundational business courses like Microeconomics for Business, along with classes designed to build essential business skills like Writing and Critical Reasoning.

In Leading Organizations, which focuses on leadership and management skills, students participate in hands-on projects at the Experiential Learning Center, one of the top business training facilities at any institution of higher education. Through business simulations, students put theory into practice and develop leadership, negotiation and communication skills.

Global Social Impact (GSI) is a course combining classroom study in international business with a 10-day trip abroad to meet with executives and political leaders. The WBB cohort will travel to South America for exposure to an international market outside of the three zones included in the degree.  

Year Two: HKUST

Leveraging HKUST’s strengths as a school of science and technology, students will gain professional and technical knowledge while developing a strong entrepreneurial spirit and innovative thinking — the necessary foundation and skills for an evolving world. Courses will offer unique insights into the way business works in China and Asia and provide an introduction to the Chinese languages. Other courses such as Mathematics for Economists, Business Statistics and Introduction to Information Systems emphasize mathematical and analytical skills. Students will take their first Accounting class and develop critical-thinking skills studying Science and Technology and other subjects.

In both the first and second years, students can select from a variety of humanities courses (literature, music, philosophy, art, anthropology, religion, history, etc.) designed to encourage an appreciation of Western and/or Chinese cultures and to develop analytical and communication skills.

Year Three: Bocconi

The Bocconi curriculum focuses on finance, economics and law; and courses in the third year will include Corporate Finance, Financial Markets and Institutions, and European Economic Policy. Students will examine the fundamentals of Italian civil law within the broader framework of European legal culture in Introduction to the Legal System, and analyze economic developments in Western nations in Economic History. The course in Public Management will explore the complex relations between private businesses and the government bodies for whom they supply products, services and management know-how at the national and local levels.

In additional classes, students will learn about the specifics of doing business in the European Union and build introductory Italian language skills.

Year Four: Open

The fourth and final year reinforces an integrated view of business with courses in Business Communications, Ethics and Strategy.

Year four also allows students to focus on specific interests and objectives, not only in the choice of which school to attend, but also through the selection of elective courses.

Business… Firsthand

The WBB program integrates curricular and co-curricular learning, giving students direct exposure to different academic, cultural and professional environments. Outside of the classroom, students may visit companies, meet executives and have the chance to hear guest speakers, including alumni and corporate leaders from the business community. In addition, students may take advantage of internships or work on research projects with faculty.

Language Proficiency

Being able to communicate in multiple languages enables the kind of network building and personal relations that can make a big difference when doing business. The objective of foreign language courses in the WBB is to provide students with the ability to use English at an advanced level, while Italian, a second European language and Chinese will be taught at the introductory level. Progress in language learning will be certified in courses at each school or through recognized language certificates.