University shakes up Master of Commerce program

University shakes up Master of Commerce program

The University of Sydney’s Business School has redesigned its Master of Commerce program to help them prepare for the jobs of the future.

The new program, being launched in semester one 2021, offers eight specialisations, including global logistics, data analytics and digital transformation.

Students who will enrol in the 18-month Master of Commerce can choose one specialisation while those who will be studying the two-year Master of Commerce (Extension) can specialize in two different areas. Scholarships will also be awarded to eligible applicants in both programs.

As part of the program’s shake up, the University surveyed more than 300 industry practitioners, including those who work at some of the world’s biggest brands, to identify what skills they value in graduates entering the workforce.

“It was clear that employers need graduates to not only have the technical know-how, but also the creative and innovative agility needed for solving complex problems in rapidly shifting contexts,” Associate Professor Teresa Davis, Master of Commerce Program Director, said.

While the comprehensive review of the program was conducted last year, Associate Professor Davis said the coronavirus outbreak and its devastating impact on many in the workforce “highlights the importance of learning core skills to navigate industry-wide disruption, which can be adapted to different business contexts”.

“In an increasingly volatile world, graduates will need to be adaptable and dynamic across many aspects of business. It’s these core skills that will help cushion our graduates against major market shocks,” she said.

Industry-based learning

In a statement, the University of Sydney said that the program’s emphasis on “work-integrated learning units” was “guided by input from current Master of Commerce students and alumni from the 70,000-strong global network.”

Both postgraduate courses allow eligible applicants to complete an industry placement program, which includes self-sourced and local placements as well as international options in China and the US once travel restrictions are lifted.

Jessie Huang is among the students who completed the Master of Commerce at the University. She came from Canada in 2016 and completed an industry placement program with a cosmetics company in Sydney.

“The program provided opportunities for me to not only gain practical experience in my area of study, but also to network and build relationships with business contacts within the company and industry,” she said.

“It helped my gain firsthand experience in applying my learning to real-life projects and helped me to secure a position at the company after graduation.”

‘Transformational education’

The new program will also offer several in-kind fast-tracked short work/industry placement opportunities to select students with key industry partners.

“Our bespoke work-integrated learning units, which are a key part of the new Master of Commerce, are designed to develop and master key employability skills for our graduates along with the work experience they’ll need to thrive for their career pathways, while delivering tangible benefits to our partner organisations and communities,” said Associate Professor Rachael Hains-Wesson, Director of the Work-Integrated Learning Hub.

Professor Greg Whitwell, Dean of the University of Sydney Business School, said the redesign of the program “demonstrates the School’s commitment to equipping students with real-world industry experiences underpinned by an excellent academic offering.”

He said that the University’s aim is to deliver “a truly transformational education.”

“We are proud of the way our world-class teachers and researchers bring exceptionally designed courses to life, embedding creative and analytics skills in our responsible business graduates as they enter the workforce,” he said.