Through a collaboration with the University of Hertfordshire (UH) in the United Kingdom, Capilano University now offers students the opportunity to Master the skills necessary to pursue a global career in business.

After just one year of study, students earn both a Graduate Diploma in International Management from Cap U and a Master of Science (M.Sc.) in International Business from UH.

It’s called the International Management Graduate Diploma (INMA) Program and it was introduced five years ago.

The goal of the INMA Program is to instill greater confidence and understanding regarding how to do business internationally, to increase students’ ability to manage change, to open students’ eyes to cultural differences and to help them become exceptional problem-solvers.

“I loved it,” said alumna of the program, Mia McCannel. “I honestly can’t say enough good things about the program.”

McCannel graduated in 2017 and is now an HR consultant for Pivot HR Services.

“I learned so much about myself and it really got me to where I am today and I think that’s really important,” said McCannel. “The program gave me an edge over other applicants.”

Not only does the program require academic excellence, it also gives them the chance to experience life abroad as they spend the second half of the year at UH in London.

“It’s important to provide students the chance to see the world,” said Lou Villalba, Ph.D. Ed.D, Instructor and Program Convenor for the INMA Program. “We wanted to give students the chance to experience the world, experience different programs and have their eyes opened [that’s why we started the program], the program does a whole lot more than focus solely on academics.”

The main idea, according to Villalba, is to help students become citizens of the world in a structured type of way as to instil a love of learning.

And one of the best ways to do so is by employing exceptional faculty.

Faculty Members Enhance the Program even Further

“It really came down to the faculty and the level of knowledge they brought into the program, both at Cap and the U.K.,” said McCannel. “I came out of it thinking, “Wow I really learned a lot, I really took my education to that next level,’ so faculty for one was just an amazing aspect of the program.”

This sentiment was echoed by Villalba who sees the faculty as one of the ways the program is unique.

“The reason I believe we are a successful program is because we work so closely with the students, we get to know our students in a very intimate way academically and that’s the key to everything.”

And what makes these faculty members great is they truly love their career.

“There are times when I wake up and think my goodness I get paid to do this,” said Villalba. “We grow every day and we get paid to do it.”

Students in the INMA Program can also always lean on their instructors for guidance.

“We support them through the journey, we are always reachable,” said Villalba.

According to Villalba, not only are the students learning something new every day, so are the faculty. And as the faculty grow, so does the program.

The change that is occurring in the upcoming year is the methods and finance courses are coming to Canada and a couple of the international management courses are going back to England.

“I think that’s the perfect fit for our students, we are very hands-on here, we are a teaching centre university, but [UH] is a research grant university and of course they also do teaching. Our students get both models of education,” said Villalba.

Guidance to Incoming Students

To individuals contemplating enroling or about to start in the upcoming year, both Villalba and McCannel have words of encouragement.

“Students come to this program to discover themselves,” Villalba. “So it’s important to keep an open mind.

As for McCannel, she recommends students take advantage of the faculty and the networking this program provides.

“Cap does a great job at providing a ton of different networking opportunities and providing you with so many resources that can really take your career to the next level,” said McCannel. “Give it your all and take advantage of all the opportunities.