Alumnus Amir Refaat uses Global Leadership courses from his EMBA to build relevant skills for working with international clients

Amir Refaat came to the University of Fredericton (UFred) intending to become a more well-rounded business professional. As an engineer, Amir has spent the past decade honing his project management and engineering skills in the construction and manufacturing sectors and in commercial HVAC systems. He knew that combining these skill sets with more advanced knowledge in business would help to continue to drive his career forward.

“What led me to attain my degree was a need to couple my theoretical engineering background with a strong business acumen. UFred provided the flexibility I needed to pursue this while being employed full-time.”

Amir’s role when entering the Executive Master of Business Administration program entailed working with multiple global teams. This made the Global Leadership specialty courses in his program highly beneficial.

“The idea behind choosing the Global Leadership specialty stream was to continue developing the skills needed to manage, lead, and run a global business or global project with multiple parties from several locations.”

The information Amir gained through these courses, combined with other core skills such as those gained in Finance and Accounting, became crucial to his work with global entities as he progressed through his program. He found himself able to immediately apply what he was learning to his role, allowing him to contribute more robustly to his employer before he even graduated.

The Online Learning Environment: A Seamless Experience

While the knowledge gained during Amir’s time at UFred has helped him in his everyday work, the most memorable part of the program for him was working with his peers and instructors. He began his program in 2018 before business shifted primarily to online. Despite the challenges that many faced in migrating online, he felt his peers and instructors were well prepared to collaborate using the online platform.

“Everyone was so dedicated to the success of written reports as well as group presentations in an online environment that it made the whole process seamless. All these lessons and meetings began in 2018 prior to COVID and remote work. In hindsight, the instructors were very well adapted and ensured that the virtual learning was engaging and thoughtful. The instructors were also very knowledgeable as well as fun.”

Advice to future students

Amir’s advice to future students is to make time for required readings as the information will help you in your courses and provide you with the knowledge that you can apply in the workplace as well.

“Take the time to read the material; wake up early if you must. The material is eye opening, engaging and fun to learn.”