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#8 Nanyang (NTU) MBA Admissions Q&A with Mr. Nick Soriano

Nanyang MBA Admissions Director Nick Soriano

“By introducing the new 12-month curriculum for 2013, we are trying to address the present and future needs of industry with regards to MBA hires. We have focused on the 3 different aspects of what industry needs are: leadership across cultures, a stronger and deeper knowledge of Asia, and relevance to today’s world.”

Mr. Nick Soriano, Director of MBA Marketing & Admissions at Nanyang Technological University, joined the show to discuss the Nanyang MBA’s major curriculum changes (focus on leadership across cultures, Asia business, industry relevance) and format changes (16 months to 12 months) while also giving an insider’s look into the program’s stringent admissions process.

The Nanyang MBA was ranked #32 by the Financial Times, making it the top-ranked Singapore MBA program for 2013.  As Nick points out, Singapore has over 6,000 MNCs headquartered there and is consistently ranked as one of the world’s easiest places to do business. Singapore’s strategic position between China and India – along with its safe and clean environment and mix of Eastern and Western influences – makes it one of the most desired work locations in Asia.

Nick emphasized that the curriculum changes were made in concert with Asia’s rise in the world economy and employer demand for MBAs who can lead across cultures. The new curriculum requires an 8-month leadership module, industry project and business study mission. Nanyang also has double MBAs with Waseda (Japan), St. Gallen (Switzerland) and a double masters with ESSEC (France).

The Nanyang (NTU) MBA in 3 words: challenging, interactive, rewarding.


  • Nanyang Business School was the first business school in Singapore to attain accreditations from EQUIS and AACSB, and has been ranked in the top 100 by Economist for 11 straight years. In 2013 Nanyang transitioned to a 1-year MBA (from 16-months) and revamped its curriculum to feature a stronger focus on Asia, leadership across cultures, and industry application. Nanyang Technological University, “founded” in 1991, is the fastest-rising Asian university in the top 50 universities in the world, and one of the two largest public universities in Singapore.

What is relatively unique about the Nanyang MBA? What are its key advantages?

  • High return on investment – the Financial Times rated the Nanyang MBA 12th globally and #1 in Asia in delivering value
  • Nanyang has 3 tracks: General Management, Strategy & Innovation and Banking & Finance
  • Double Degree options with Waseda (Japan), St. Gallen (Switzerland) and Essec (France)
  • Strongest reputation in Singapore, China, and India, and for accounting and finance
  • Nanyang established first center of cultural intelligence in the world
  • 1-year MBA starting in July

Potentially good fit if:

  • You want to work in Singapore and Asia – 80% of the Class of 2012 ended up working in Asia
  • You are looking for a high return on your financial investment – with a 1-year format and relatively affordable tuition (roughly $44,000 USD), the Financial Times ranked Nanyang #1 in Asia for ROI
  • You want to get an Asian MBA with a global focus

Listen on for much, much more!

Touch MBA’s Nanyang MBA Fast Facts

Program Highlights

  • Class size: 80-100 students, ~20 different nationalities, 84% international
  • Program: 1-year length, starts in July
  • New 12-month curriculum starting in 2013 (used to be 16-months)
  • Accredited by EQUIS and AACSB
  • Program focus is on sustainability and corporate governance, a deeper knowledge of Asia, and relevance to today’s world and industry
  • New emphasis on leadership across cultures – 2 trimesters (8 months) will be spent on leadership modules, workshops, and talks
  • Nanyang established the first center of cultural intelligence in the world
  • Industry project and business study mission are new mandatory requirements
  • Singapore is a great combination of East and West with over 6,000 MNCs headquartered here.
  • Singapore is one of the safest and cleanest countries of the world


  • 3 stages: 1) paper assessment 2) interview stage 3) selection based on cumulative score ranking
  • Weightage of criteria (i.e. academic performance, GMAT, career progression, leadership potential, referees, interview) changes each year depending on market criteria
  • With a shorter 12-month program, leadership potential and profile fit with career goals will be weighted more heavily
  • Minimum GMAT score requirement: 600.  Average GMAT score: 672.  Also accept GRE.
  • Minimum work experience requirement: 2 years
  • Round 1 deadline end of Dec (batch mode)
  • Round 2 deadline end of March (rolling admissions),
  • Round 2 decisions returned faster as Nanyang is building class around Round 1 admits


  • Tuition: 55,000 SGD, roughly $44,000 USD
  • 20% of class gets scholarships ranging from 20-50% of admissions fees
  • Scholarships are merit based, and for students who have first accepted a place in the program
  • International students can get loans in Singapore, but need a local guarantor


  • Nanyang has greatest reputation in Singapore, India and China, but is also well regarded in other countries
  • 52% of graduates in 2012 changed function, 50% changed industry, 34% changed both
  • 80% of graduates worked in Asia; 20% in Europe
  • Graduates have a short window post-graduation to look for a job (this timeframe changes each year)

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