Dear Lauder Alumni:
Our admissions effort for the Class of 2018 is in full swing. We have received a record number of applications in the first round that closed at the end of September, with a 23% increase over last year. We are looking forward to a robust second round, which closes in early January.
As you know, much of the excitement about the Lauder Program has to do with its strong and committed alumni community. You play an important role in encouraging prospective students to apply and admitted students to attend the Lauder Institute.
I would like to highlight the recent changes we have made to the curriculum, which build on our 30-year tradition of intensive language and culture study, and incorporate the new trends in the global economy:
1.New concentration in Africa
Our programs of concentration are now organized as regions, reflecting the reorganization of the global economy in terms of trade blocs and currency areas. Thus, we welcome applications from people who would like to focus their studies on Africa, East and Southeast Asia, Europe, Latin America, and South Asia, the Middle East and North Africa. For each of these regions, we welcome applications from prospective students with the relevant language proficiencies. We are now the first top business school to offer a concentration in Africa, for which French, Portuguese, Spanish or Swahili, for instance, could be relevant languages.
2.New dimension for Immersions program
Our new, innovative summer immersions will incorporate a regional component as well. For example, the students on the Latin America Program with Spanish as their target language will spend 6 weeks in Spanish-speaking Latin America, and will also join the Brazil-based Portuguese students for up to 2 weeks in Brazil, in order to learn about the growing interconnections throughout the Latin American region. Similarly, the students on the Europe Program with German as their target language will spend 6 weeks in Germany, and up to 2 weeks in Belgium and Luxembourg together with the other language students in the European Program, such as French, Spanish, and Russian.
3.Global Program for students who are familiar with more than three languages
We also offer the Global Program, for students who speak at least one language at a superior level of proficiency besides English, with knowledge of additional languages being an important criterion for admission. The summer immersion takes these students to 7 or 8 different countries around the world on an integrated program of classes and corporate visits.
4.Option to take more electives
The new curriculum offers the opportunity to take more elective classes for students who reach the graduation requirement for their target language before the end of the program. Thus, a student who scores superior on his or her target language by the end of the first semester or the first year may elect to take elective classes as opposed to further language instruction.
5.Lauder Intercultural Ventures
Finally, we are enhancing the opportunities for immersive experiences by requiring students to choose among a series of rapid immersions called Lauder Intercultural Ventures. This year we are offering Cuba, Israel, Morocco, Thailand, and Zanzibar. These weeklong immersions, with a thematic focus and delivered in English, are designed to help students develop their ability to learn and to adapt to different cultural settings. Alumni may join these ventures.