In 2021/22, in order to promote the diversity of its graduating classes, Grenoble Ecole de Management is launching its own competitive entrance exam for admission based on previous qualifications: Admissions based on qualifications - competitive exam following training other than university preparatory classes - for students with 2, 3, or 4 years of higher education. This new access pathway to GEM's Grande Ecole Program will bring about competitive spirit, diverse profiles, and more collective intelligence.
Interview with Jean-François Fiorina, Deputy Director-General of Grenoble Ecole de Management.
What are the reasons behind introducing a competitive entrance exam for admission based on previous qualifications at GEM, which started in December 2021 for the 2022 academic year?
Grenoble Ecole de Management was already conducting admissions based on qualifications of at least 2 or 3 years of higher education within the Passerelle Competitive Entrance Exam bank, which GEM co-founded 35 years ago. Today, we want to regain our autonomy in the recruitment of students who are admitted based on qualifications - that is, outside the "classic" preparatory classes for the grandes écoles - like our colleagues at EMLYON, EDHEC, Skema, and Audencia.
GEM also anticipates major changes that will take place in 2023, particularly with regard to IUTs (university institutes of technology), which will extend training programs from two years to three years.
How is this initiative in line with GEM's strategic plan for 2025?
This initiative fits in with our status as a société à mission,* one of the pillars of which is "education for all." Our commitment is to diversify the profiles of the students we recruit. GEM now targets audiences that Passerelle previously did not.
This flagship program at Grenoble Ecole de Management provides access to all corporate functions and professions in management, consulting, marketing, finance, auditing, purchasing, human resources, etc. Its post-graduation employment rate is 99% within six months of graduation (class of 2020).
What will be the main benefits for potential recruiting companies?
This new autonomy in our recruitment process will allow us to offer companies a greater and more diverse choice of audiences. This is a direct benefit to businesses. Our classrooms will be made up of more diverse backgrounds and profiles and will reflect different parts of society. Indirectly, this diversity of profiles in the classroom will generate a more competitive spirit, livelier discussions, and debates etc. This will encourage more collective intelligence and innovation.
What will be the procedure for the competitive exam and what are the selection criteria?
Students from preparatory classes take a "classic" competitive exam to enter the Grande Ecole program. The entrance exam for admission based on previous qualifications will consist of case analysis, logic tests and English language tests. The entrance exam itself is divided into two parts: a written section, an oral statement of motivation, and two language oral exams: Foreign Language 1 (MFL1) and Foreign Language 2 (MFL2). The examination board will be composed of GEM teachers and company employees. 175 places are open in the first year for the 2022 academic year, and 210 places in the second year.
In conclusion, what is GEM hoping to achieve by introducing this new competitive exam?
The opening of a competitive entrance exam for admission based on previous qualifications at GEM is an investment for the School. GEM wants to continue to be a Grande Ecole that attracts talent and allows everyone to flourish. This extension of the recruitment process should allow for the development of the principle of individual and collective accomplishment for companies' greater benefit.