DIFC Centre of Excellence hosts 120 students representing 29 countries from The Duke MBA - Cross Continent programme

Farid Mohammed Ahmed of Dubai World and Dr. Yasar Jarrar of PricewaterhouseCoopers in Dubai provide students with insights on the growth of Dubai companies and the outlook for the region.

Students from the Duke MBA - Cross Continent programme were given insights into the remarkable transformation of Dubai World into a highly successful multinational at a special interactive session held on Monday.

Farid Mohamed Ahmed, Secretary General to the Board of Dubai World and Dr. Yasar Jarrar, Partner of PricewaterhouseCoopersin Dubai, talked to the students of the world-famous MBA programme about the Dubai strategy and their experiences working in the region.

The 120 students - from 29 different countries - later interacted with Farid Mohammed Ahmed as well as senior officials of the DIFC Centre of Excellence, where the Duke MBA - Cross Continent programme’s campus is located. Farid Mohammed Ahmed presented an overview of Dubai World and briefed the students about the outlook for Dubai, especially in the context of how the emirate is leveraging the challenges presented by the ongoing financial crisis to position itself for the future.

The DIFC Centre of Excellence is home to one of the six global campuses of the Cross Continent programme at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business. Also delivered from campuses in London, Shanghai, St. Petersburg, Delhi and Durham, the programme sees every batch of students travelling to a different location around the globe to learn first-hand from top business leaders.

Faten Hani, Chief Executive Officer of the DIFC Centre of Excellence, pointed out that interacting with globally acclaimed business leaders like Farid Mohammed Ahmed and Dr Yasar Jarrar and hearing from them about their experiences in the region would add value to the professional and academic experiences of students of The Duke MBA - Cross Continent programme.

“We at the DIFC Centre of Excellence always strive to attract the very best in management and executive education - and of course, The Duke University Fuqua School of Business is one such strategic partner. We hope that by bringing global standards of management education to Dubai, we can create a core of leaders that can meet the ever-expanding needs of our region as well as help us to create conglomerates that are ranked amongst the best in the world,” Hani said.

“Moreover, these future business leaders represent 29 countries and their knowledge of Dubai and the region will positively impact on their company’s and country’s future growth policies,” Hani added.

Patricia McCall, Regional Director for the Middle East of The Fuqua School of Business of Duke University - Dubai, said: “We are pleased to host The Duke MBA - Cross Continent Class of 2010 in Dubai, which began the programme in London in August 2009. On a global scale, Dubai has attracted a lot of attention. The economies in the Middle East region are undergoing rapid and dynamic changes and will be a key focus for our activities. Many of the region’s firms - such as Dubai World - have become real global icons and we felt that it would be a great learning experience for our 2010 Class students to have direct access to business leaders such as Farid Mohammed Ahmed and Dr. Yasar Jarrar.


With six campus locations around the world, The Duke MBA-Cross Continent program embeds and connects students with the cultural and economic centers of the world, providing a new level of global competency. The program’s highly flexible design offers high-potential managers with a transformative business education experience, allowing business leaders to live and work anywhere in the world while pursuing The Duke MBA.


The programme covers the full Duke MBA curriculum over 16 months in six terms. Each Cross Continent term begins with an intense period of residential learning at one of Duke University’s global locations followed by six weeks of distance learning involving collaboration in globally dispersed teams.

The MBA programme builds a true global awareness and provides the real world experience that helps prepare young talent for international job responsibilities.

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