13 Jan 2010
Harvard Business School Launches January Term Program
Students Enroll In Seminars and Global, Field-Based Immersions
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BOSTON — Harvard Business School (HBS) is enhancing its MBA curriculum by offering a range of intensive seminars, independent opportunities, and an expanded Immersion Experience Program (IXP) during a new January Term between the fall and winter semesters. HBS is among the first Harvard schools to pilot the new term at the University in conjunction with Harvard's move to a common calendar this academic year. January Term offerings are open to first- and second-year HBS MBA students.

The eight HBS January Term faculty-led seminars are being taught in small classroom settings covering a variety of subject areas, including leadership, negotiation, global trends, sustainable development, and health care. Off campus, students enrolled in January Term IXPs are spreading out to locations such as China, India, Peru, and Rwanda, undertaking field-based learning activities, company visits, and service projects as part of these international experiential learning programs.

"The HBS January Term gives students the opportunity to reflect in a different way on what they are learning in the classroom through in-depth study and by applying their learning in the field," said Professor Joseph Badaracco, faculty chair of the HBS MBA program. "Our offerings include a mix of small seminars, international immersions, and independent professional development opportunities that allow students to take a deep, interactive dive into topics, industries, and regions that inspire them."

More than 400 first- and second-year MBA students are participating in nine faculty-led IXPs, as this program, which debuted in early 2007, continues to grow and evolve. The IXP experience is generally made up of three elements: pre-departure activities to introduce and prepare students for the trip, an intensive Immersion Experience (lasting one to two weeks), and a post-program opportunity for sharing lessons learned with the wider HBS and Harvard University communities.

HBS students are undertaking the following immersions:

  • China IXP: Understanding a Business Environment (Beijing, Hangzhou, and Shanghai)
    -led by Elisabeth Koll
  • India IXP: Creating and Transforming Competitive Advantage (Mumbai, Delhi, and Agra)
    -led by Stephen Bradley and Bhaskar Chakravorti
  • Peru IXP: Escaping the Natural Resource Curse (Lima, Caral, Puerto Maldonado, and Cusco)
    -led by Diego Comin
  • Rwanda IXP: Business and Social Enterprise in a Post-Conflict Country (Kigali and Akagera)
    -led by Louis Wells
  • United Arab Emirates & Bahrain IXP: Energy and Globalization: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly (Abu Dhabi, Dubai, and Manama)
    -led by Noel Maurer
  • Vietnam IXP: Globalization and Entrepreneurship Today (Hanoi, Can Tho, and Ho Chi Minh City)
    -led by Regina Abrami
  • Boston IXP: High Potential Entrepreneurial Ventures in the Boston Metropolitan Area
    -led by Shikhar Ghosh, Robert Higgins, and Joseph Lassiter
  • New Orleans IXP: Service and Leadership in an Entrepreneurial Environment
    -led by Shawn Cole, Alnoor Ebrahim, and Herman "Dutch" Leonard
  • Silicon Valley IXP in Partnership with the HBS Rock Center for Entrepreneurship: Entrepreneurial Ventures in Silicon Valley (Palo Alto)
    -led by Thomas Eisenmann and Michael Roberts

During some IXPs, including this year's Rwanda program, students work for local organizations on week-long projects. In addition to the nine January programs listed above, two international IXPS in Brazil and Costa Rica will take place in March.

The HBS faculty-led January Term seminars are being held between January 11 and 22. They cover a wide variety of topics and feature case discussions, explorations of literature, lectures, guest speakers, student working groups, and student presentations.

For example, the president of Houston's MD Anderson Cancer Center, the CEO of Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, the CEO of Commonwealth Care Alliance in Boston, and the CEO of Sun Yat-Sen Cancer Center in Taiwan will join Professor Michael Porter for an in-depth examination of value-based health care delivery.

The seminars and faculty leaders include:

  • Leadership: The Hardest Questions
    -led by Joseph Badaracco
  • Negotiation and Decision Making: Trust, Emotions, Ethics, and Morality
    -led by Max Bazerman
  • Finding Your Way to What Matters: Self-Awareness for Career Effectiveness
    -led by Timothy Butler
  • Integrating Business and Design for Sustainable Development (with the Harvard Graduate School of Design)
    -led by Amy Edmondson, Robert Eccles, Andreas Georgoulias, and Spiro Pollalis
  • Innovations in Consumer-Driven Health Care
    -led by Regina Herzlinger
  • Global Futures and the Built Environment
    -led by John Macomber
  • Value-Based Health Care Delivery
    -led by Michael Porter
  • Success Through Failure: Conversations with Great Business Leaders about Turning Setbacks into Success
    -led by Arthur Segel and Shikhar Ghosh

During the January Term, students can also enroll in short seminars focusing on deal making, sales leadership; and restructuring; explore career opportunities through student-led Career Treks in North America, Europe and Asia; or receive career coaching, among other independent study opportunities.

"This extraordinary array of options for the January Term is a complement to the close-to-practice learning that goes on in HBS classrooms every day," said Professor Badaracco.