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  • French Business Students Start Classes on Centennial

    SKEMA, one of France's top business schools has begun classes at Centennial.

    Nearly 250 students began attending classes, which are all taught in English, in mid-January. This is the first location in North America for SKEMA, which has five other sites in France, China and Morocco.

    "We have been so welcomed here," said Pascal Vidal, SKEMA's campus director. "This has been a great partnership with Centennial Campus and NC State."

    According to Vidal, Centennial Campus was chosen as the site for SKEMA's first North American location for several reasons. Vidal said that it was important for SKEMA to locate in or around a high technology area so the students could benefit from the "knowledge economy." In fact, the business school positions itself as a key player in that environment.

    SKEMA also wanted its students to be immersed in a community's culture and thought that the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill area was ideal for that experience. Finally, the administrators saw Centennial Campus as having the perfect blend of corporate and education environments from which to draw.

    "We want our students to be where things are happening," said Vidal, "and we certainly think that Centennial Campus is just the right place for that kind of environment."

    Most of the students are studying towards a Master of Science in Management degree, while some are studying for a Master’s in Market Finance and Technology Innovations. Bachelor students will begin next semester. The students will spend either a semester or full year on Centennial. Eventually the program will double to include up to 400 students.

    All of the classes, which are conducted in English, are taught in two buildings on campus and feature state-of-the-art computer and videoconferencing equipment. The space also has a student lounge and faculty offices.

    The students are also being integrated into the rest of NC State University. Not only do they have access to the amenities on campus, but also have the opportunity to take classes in the Poole School of Management and work on joint academic projects with NC State students and faculty.

    "NC State has really made it easy for us to develop a long-term partnership on campus," said Vidal. "It's just going really well so far."

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