HEC Paris Dean Eloïc Peyrache Unveils The Path Forward For HEC’s MiM & MIF

HEC Paris Dean Eloïc Peyrache Unveils The Path Forward For HEC's MiM & MIF

HEC Paris students. File photo

Recently, Poets&Quants attended the virtual conference “The Future of Business Education: Spotlight on Masters Programs” hosted by The Financial Times. One of the highlights of the event was the Keynote Speaker session “View From The Top,” where FT‘s Andrew Jack engaged with HEC Paris Dean Eloïc Peyrache in a discussion on recent developments as well as the the school’s Master in Management and Master in International Finance programs.

“Something new on campus we’ve been focusing on is ‘purpose’ — your own purpose, what you want to do within your lifetime, your purpose within business,” Peyrache says. “We have an institute called The Society and Organizations which focuses on your purpose. Students engage with the institute from day one to make sure this introspection is happening throughout their time at HEC.”

Peyrache began his career at HEC in 2003 and has held the position of general director and dean of HEC Paris since January 2021. His research focuses on the field of contract theory, specifically in information transmission in intermediation markets. He also founded the Center in Entrepreneurship and Innovation at HEC Paris.

HEC PARIS’ MiM RANKS NO. 1 GLOBALLY

This year, HEC revamped the MiM curriculum for the first time in 10 years. A steering committee, including CEOs, government ministers, Peyrache, and members of the HEC community facilitated the transition, the dean says.

HEC Paris Dean Eloïc Peyrache Unveils The Path Forward For HEC's MiM & MIF

Eloïc Peyrache became dean of HEC Paris in January 2021

“I became the dean of the school in the middle of Covid, and everyone was working remotely,” he says. “We decided to do a large project to redefine our purpose, our mission and our values. We called upon more than 3000 students, staff, faculty, alumni to be a part of the process. There was a lot of buy-in. I think it really helped to structure our whole strategy afterwards.”

HEC’s MiM has students from widely varied backgrounds in each class. The program intakes a group of 400 students annually, and a good 30% of the cohort is from Asia and Oceania, the Americas, Africa, and the Middle East. In total there are 70 nationalities in the program — so naturally, the cohorts are remarkably diverse.

For the first time since the FT began ranking these programs, HEC Paris can now claim that its MiM program is the best in the world, having just unseated long-time No. 1 St. Gallen in Lausanne, Switzerland. HEC also earned an impressive No. 2 place for its MIF program.

HEC, founded in 1881, is located just outside of Paris. It is famous for recruiting the best French students, yet also recruiting globally. “HEC is a standalone school – we’re not part of a larger university, which I think allows us to have a lot of agility in how we make decisions,” says Peyrache.

HEC’S LOCAL AND GLOBAL CONNECTIONS

While HEC operates independently, as one can expect from a top tier school, there is still much collaboration with others.

“We’re connected with some other schools that are quite different from us,” says Peyrache, who acknowledges that big challenges lie ahead in the world of tech. He emphasized how important it is to form interdisciplinary connections between tech professionals, artists, entrepreneurs, managers, and leaders. “We’ve developed centers and institutes that have started small and became very important in our strategy. It’s really about bridging science, business and society to give students exposure to connections and opportunities. HEC wants to have the best ecosystem possible,” says Peyrache.

On that note, HEC has a new collaboration. “In the past year, the focus was on having a great international network. We’ve launched a joint program with Columbia’s Climate School a couple of days ago,” says Peyrache.

“HEC is very strong in all dimensions of what you can find in business schools,” says Peyrache. Their MBA program is a top tier option as well, ranking No. 10 this year in our Poets&Quants rankings.

“We have many companies on campus that recruit globally,” notes Peyrache. “One of them is Bain & Company, who come to campus with representatives from offices all over the world looking to recruit HEC talent. They know that HEC has a high concentration of great talent, and they come here to recruit globally.”

MiM VERSUS MIF AT HEC

“The Master in International Finance is a shorter program than the MiM. Students need to come to the program with a bit of experience, and there’s a track for those with and without a business background,” says Peyrache.

The Master in International Finance is a pure finance program, whereas the MiM is really about generalized management – with two key differentiators in the curriculum.

“The first part is a generalized background, so students study everything about business. This is important because we are training people to be future leaders. They need to be well aware of the challenges. The second year, students choose one specialization. We have a lot of diversity in the second stage of the program,” says Peyrache. The MIM is constantly adding in new specializations based on demand.

While speaking about values, Peyrache specifically pointed out the prominence of entrepreneurial spirit as one of HEC’s five core values. He reflected on the value of having both successful and unsuccessful alumni return and speak on campus to speak with students on why they have both succeeded and failed.

For the MIM, HEC is less concerned about the amount of experience students have coming into the program. According to Peyrache, having a sense of what they want to study is beneficial for incoming students, but to the same extent, they shouldn’t feel discouraged from applying if they don’t have a precise idea.

“Don’t be shy or scared off because you don’t have a defined project. What we are looking for is great talent, and we’ll help you to find your way,” says Peyrache.

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