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TU Grad Uses MBA to Launch Academic Career in China

Tiffin University MBA graduate Fang Ma took her degree back to China with her and used it to help launch her business academic career. Ma completed her MBA in 2009.

For the past six years Ma has been on the faculty at Hainan University in Haikou Province in China. She is teaching a variety of classes including Marketing, International Finance, Commercial Bank Management, Insurance, and International Business. Ma also advises the undergraduate students’ theses. Ma worked as loan officer in the banking industry in China before deciding to pursue a career in academe.

She said her Tiffin MBA has been very instrumental in her career in banking and the university where she now works. “I have found myself using nearly every class I completed during my MBA studies in Tiffin, for example Financial Accounting, Individual and Teamwork, Statistical Management for Managers, and Management of Human Resources” Ma stated.

During her time at Tiffin University, she said she improved her research, writing and teamwork skills, all of which have been important in her career. “Tiffin offered me an opportunity to engage in an international academic exchange and communicate my ideas in the classes. This improved my oral expression skills and laid a solid foundation for my career. My Tiffin study experience really helped my career and I want to say many thanks to Tiffin.”

In addition to her teaching duties Ma enrolled in the Doctor of Business Administration program in Hainan University. “So at present, I am a college teacher and a doctoral student.” Ma has also embarked on her academic publishing career. She was the lead author on a paper discussing cross-border philanthropy, entitled, “How Does Experienced Scarcity Influence Home Country Consumers’ Attitudes toward the Firm Engaging in Cross-border Philanthropy? The Role of Perceived Distributive Justice.”  Perry Haan, Professor of Marketing at Tiffin University is a co-author on the paper that was submitted to the Journal of Marketing in the US.

An earlier version of the paper won first prize in the Postgraduate Research Seminar at Hainan University last year, and the Excellent Thesis award at the 2020 Annual Conference of Marketing Science in China. “Despite some academic recognition, the road of academic research has just begun for me, I have to keep trying to study and learn” Ma said.

In addition to her academic experience in the Tiffin MBA she enjoyed her time on the Tiffin campus and community. “I enjoyed the experience staying with teachers and staff in Tiffin and residents of Tiffin. You were warm and hospitable to me. You invited me to your house, we celebrated holidays together, and helped me a lot. Your kindness and help made me feel really warm and moved as an international student” she said about her interactions with the Tiffin University faculty and staff.

She also enjoyed the cultural activities on campus. For example, “I had a wonderful time in joining in the Flag Ceremony, International Dinner, and Campus Choir, which exposed me to different cultures.”

In her personal life she is now the mother of twin three year olds who are keeping her busy in her spare time. Ma said the advice she has for students in Hainan and Tiffin is the same. “Students should set clear objectives and make adequate preparations for goals.” And specifically for the Tiffin students, “Cherish your time and take full advantage of Tiffin’s kind environment to study hard persistently, and you will get some fruits.”

– Perry Haan, D.B.A.

Dr. Perry Haan has worked as a faculty member and administrator in higher education since 1986. He has won teaching awards at three different institutions of higher learning, including the 2016-2017 Tiffin University Scholarship Award. In 2017 he was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship to teach and conduct research in Nepal. In 2010 he was awarded a Fellowship by the International American Association of Financial Management for his teaching and academic work in international markets. He has taught in eight countries outside the U.S.