MyMBA – Learning at 150kph in a Porsche

Henry's international exchange program included a visit to the Porsche factory in Leipzig.
Henry’s international exchange program included a visit to the Porsche factory in Leipzig.

An MBA can take you anywhere. For Adelaide entrepreneur Henry Gooden that anywhere was a dream tour of the Porsche Assembly Plant outside Leipzig and a fast lap of the company’s test course in a Porsche Panamera.

After commencing his MBA in 2010 at the University of Adelaide Henry never imagined it would finish with a stroll across the Charles Bridge in Prague three years later.

Henry is part of an increasing number of students choosing an exchange or study abroad program as part of their MBA studies. For many the intensive offshore study experience is the perfect way to wrap up their studies while seeing and experiencing business and innovation in parts of the world most future leaders will never have the opportunity to visit.

Henry, who now runs the Australian arm of global digital design and development agency Good Dog Design, spent two weeks on a study abroad exchange with HHL University in Leipzig. The exchange consisted of a week in Leipzig followed by a week Prague.

“Completing the MBA part-time meant juggling family life, work and study for three years. The study abroad course gave me the opportunity to apply all that I had learned from my previous subjects over a two week period,” he said.

“The fortnight away gave me a break from the daily grind of work and the ability to completely focus on the course and the tasks at hand.

“You also are immersed in a different culture and get the chance to observe how cultural differences and approaches can have impacts not only on how different societies do business, but also how they think.”

The program also integrated plenty of opportunity to experience local cultures with plenty of time to explore your host city.

“The group I was with gelled really well. Even at the end of the two weeks, all 12 of us were still meeting each night to have dinner, not because we had to, but because we were all having so much fun,” he said.

“All of the cities offered in the exchange will have plenty to offer, but I loved every moment spent in Leipzig and Prague.

“A particular highlight of the trip was a visit to the Porsche Assembly plant as part of our Case Study of Skoda and Porsche.  We were able to see first-hand the Lean and JIT practices on display at the Porsche Assembly Plant just outside of Leipzig.

“Upon completion of the tour we were able to partake in a fast lap of the test course in a Porsche Panamera.  Drifting through a corner at over 150km per hour was easily one of the more enjoyable ways to pass an afternoon.”

Henry’s tips for making the most of your MBA exchange experience

  1. Hit the ground running
    One of the main reasons we had such a great time was that our group had touched base via Facebook before we got there. It meant that we all knew each other before we even got to Leipzig.
  2. Have a meeting place to start each night
    Find a place that is an unofficial meeting spot for everyone to catch up after the end of the day’s topics. It’s a great chance to use this as a launch point to plan your nights out and see the cities you are in.
  3. Get your project done early!
    You can even do some legwork before you go. Many of the courses will give you topic outlines before you leave. Get the research done here so that you can see the sites when you are overseas.

International Programs with the University of Adelaide

The Adelaide Business School has strong exchange partnerships with some of the world’s top ranking business schools, providing Adelaide MBA students the opportunity to study overseas in some of the most highly ranked MBA programs in the world.

This opportunity also allows students to earn their business degree while immersing themselves in a different culture and learning a new language. Subject to approval from the MBA Program Director, the international study experience can count for credit towards your MBA.

The MBA short term programs are conducted as intensive programs of study in the winter period (June-July) and they vary from 2 to 6 weeks. All programs are taught in English and are available to both Australian and international students.

MBA short term programs are also conducted at a non-partner university and students will be enrolled as a Study Abroad student.

The University of Adelaide is one of Australia’s leading research-intensive universities and is consistently ranked among the top 1% of universities in the world.


Ben Ready
Ben Ready founded MBA News in 2014 and is the Managing Editor. He is a former business and finance journalist with Australian Associated Press (AAP) and Dow Jones Newswires in London. Ben completed his MBA in 2012 and was awarded the QUT GMAA Entrepreneurship Prize. He is also the founder and Managing Director of RGC Media & Mktng (