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Record Number of Athabasca University
Executive MBA Grads

Graduates and Academic Coaches Reflect Program's International Reach

June 7, 2002

Athabasca, Alberta - From Middlesex, England to Medicine Hat, Alberta; from Saudi Arabia to Seattle, Washington; from Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island to Ndjamena, Chad; from Dallas, Texas to Dryden, Ontario -- Athabasca University's newest Executive MBA grads hail from all corners of the world. In total, a record 262 Executive MBA graduands are being honoured in Athabasca, Alberta on Friday, June 7, 2002.

This record number confirms the growing reputation and success of the EMBA offered by Athabasca University's Centre for Innovative Management. The program, which began just seven years ago with 130 students, now boasts 1,140 students, and is ranked in the top three of Canada's Executive MBA programs (Canadian Business Magazine, November 3, 2001).

In addition to the graduands from around the world, academic coaches from Germany, England, the United States and Canada will join the faculty and staff of Athabasca University to celebrate the achievements of the newest Executive MBA graduates. Nearly two-thirds of all Executive MBA grads will gather in Athabasca for this year's convocation event, setting a record for attendance at the graduation ceremony.

Pierre Leroux from Ndjamena, Chad, Zsolt Silberer from Middlesex, England, Muhammad Khaleeq of Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, and Bob Sutherland of Brussels, Belgium are a few of the international graduands who are part of the Class of 2002, which also includes nine Americans.

Husband and wife team, Gabriele Guderjahn from Hanover, Germany and her St. Catherine's, Ontario-based husband, Sean McFarland, are traveling to Athabasca to celebrate the completion of their joint learning adventure. Not only has their work on the EMBA Program been conducted online, so has part of their marriage. Working on their MBA programs in two different countries gave Gabi and Sean a unique understanding of the demands of the program, and led them to coach each other through the more demanding times. The couple cites the power of online technology in keeping their studies and personal communications dynamic, continuous and rewarding.

Also among this year's graduating class is former Stanley Cup winner, Paul Boutilier of Bedford, Nova Scotia, who played defense for the New York Islanders in the early 1980s. Paul has successfully completed his EMBA in Information Technology Management, and is vice-president, Atlantic, of the World Curling Players' Association. Paul's experience of the program was "one I will never forget, and I am as proud today as when I won the Stanley Cup."

With the addition of this year's 262 graduates, the Executive MBA alumni group now totals 769. This growing network of professional business leaders and learners will continue to influence international business communities, and contribute to Canada's global competitiveness.

The success of Athabasca University's Executive MBA program can be seen in the increasing number of students who choose to experience the powerful combination of quality online business education and real world application -- a combination that spells success for Athabasca University's newest Executive MBA graduates.

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Marilyn Wangler, Marketing & Communications Manager
Athabasca University Centre for Innovative Management
Tel.: 1-800-561-4650 / or (780) 418-7553 / Cell: (780) 721-0431


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