HEC Montréal

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Coordinates: 45°30′12.71″N 73°37′17.17″W / 45.5035306°N 73.6214361°W / 45.5035306; -73.6214361

HEC Montréal
Hautes études commerciales de Montréal
Motto Letters that will take you far
Established 1907[1]
Type Business School
Endowment $ 127 million
Director Dr. Michel Patry[2]
Academic staff
269 (2012-13)[1]
Administrative staff
531 (2012-13)[1]
Students 12,200 (2012-13)[1]
Undergraduates 8,962 (2012-13)[1]
Postgraduates 3,238 (2012-13)[1]
Location Montreal, QC, Canada
Campus Urban
Alumni 71,000 (since 1907)[1]
Affiliations Université de Montréal, AACSB, EQUIS, AMBA UACC, CBIE
Website www.hec.ca/en/

HEC Montréal (École des Hautes Études commerciales de Montréal), is the independent affiliated business school of the Université de Montréal, and the second oldest management School in Canada. It holds accreditations from AACSB, EQUIS and AMBA, one of two schools in North America to hold triple accreditation in management education. The full name of HEC Montreal was École des Hautes Études Commerciales; the school was renamed HEC Montréal in 2002. The School is not related to the HEC Lausanne or the HEC Paris.[3] It is known for its international atmosphere, with one third of the students and 40% of professors coming from abroad, and favours a multilingual approach to business education, offering bilingual (French and English) and trilingual (French, English and Spanish) bachelor's degrees, and graduate degrees both in English and in French.[citation needed]


HEC Montréal was founded in 1907 by the Chambre de commerce de Montréal with the help of the Saint-Jean-Baptiste Society. Built on the model of Grandes Écoles French style, the School was autonomous and had no link with a university.

The school celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2007. Moreover, HEC Montréal currently has fifty research centres, including 22 research chairs.[4] The student body is made up of approximately 12,000 students and the faculty consists of 250 professors.

The school's oldest building: Square Viger

List of Directors[edit]

HEC Montréal's Signboard on an autumn day
Years of Service Director
1 1907 - 1916 Auguste-Joseph de Bray
2 1916 - 1938 Henry Laureys
3 1938 - 1962 Esdras Minville
4 1962 - 1972 Roger Charbonneau
5 1972 - 1974 Paul Dell'Aniello
6 1974 - 1975 Roger Charbonneau
7 1975 - 1982 Pierre Laurin
8 1982 - 1987 Pierre Harvey
9 1987 - 1995 Jean Guertin
10 1995 - 2006 Jean-Marie Toulouse
11 2006 - current Michel Patry


  • Bachelor's in Business Administration

HEC Montreal's Bachelor of Business Administration (B.B.A.) is offered in 3 different formats:

- French: core courses in French, followed by options which may be in French, English or Spanish. A semester abroad is optional but encouraged.

- Bilingual: core courses in French and in English, followed by options in French, English or Spanish. A semester abroad (or Campus Abroad program) is mandatory.

- Trilingual: core courses in French, Spanish and English, followed by a mandatory semester abroad (or Campus Abroad program), and options in any of the three.

The degree lasts 3 years for students from the province of Quebec (as they have completed a mandatory 2-year generalist college education before attending the school), or 4 years for foreign students, who need to take a preparatory year consisting of classes in calculus, algebra, languages and an introduction to the business world and economics. The preparatory year may be taken in French, or entirely in English (with intensive French lessons on the side) as a gateway for students with limited knowledge of French, who are then expected to be able to take courses in French as part of their degree.

After a series of core courses (microeconomics, macroeconomics, sociology, statistics, math, accounting, etc.) students pick a "major" among a number of options such as Finance, Applied Economics, Accounting, Marketing, HR, Information Technologies, Quantitative Methods, etc. Alternatively, they can select two of these as "minors" (concentrations), or stay an extra year and complete two "majors".

The emphasis on multilingual education is unique in the continent. HEC Montréal will host, starting in 2014, a Chinese-English-French cohort coming from Chongqing Technology and Business University (CTBU) in China every year. Students in the Chinese institution already have "Chinese + English" and "Chinese + French" streams; from 2014 on, they will have the opportunity of completing two years at CTBU and two years in Montreal, receiving a double diploma issued by the two institutions.

Similarly, starting in 2016, a cohort of students coming from Tunisia's Mediterranean School of Business will spend 2 years in Montreal to obtain the double qualification. As part of the deal, HEC Montréal professors will also give courses in Tunisia.

Student exchanges are very popular: over 350 students attend some of the 100+ partner universities in 30+ countries (Australia, Argentina, Brazil, France, Germany, UK, Spain, Turkey, Hong Kong, Singapore, Thailand, China, Japan, Sweden, etc.) and another 350+ students come from these universities to HEC Montreal. International students make up a significant proportion of the student population (more than 1/3), and the most common origins are France, Northern Africa and Latin America.

  • Double degree — HEC Montreal and EM Lyon

Students at HEC Montreal and at EM Lyon can enroll in this 4-year program, delivered jointly by the two institutions. They receive a Bachelor's degree from HEC Montreal, and a Master's of Science from EM Lyon.

  • D.E.S.S. (Graduate Studies Diploma)

The school also offers specialized, one-year graduate diplomas called D.E.S.S (Diplôme d'études supérieures spécialisées) in French, for people who already hold a Bachelor's degree and a small amount of work experience. Compared to the Master of Science degrees, the D.E.S.S tend to be more applied and focused on professional skills, whereas the MSc. combines these with an extensive study of theory. The D.E.S.S is offered in e-commerce, supply chain management, finance, sustainable development and a number of other options.

A number of D.E.S.S. are offered overseas:

- D.E.S.S. in Management of the Energy Sector, offered together with the Sichuan Electric Power Corporation in China, entirely in English, exclusively for candidates who hold a bachelor's degree, have 2+ years of experience in the energy sector, and are sponsored by their employer. In 2014, the degree is also offered in Brazzaville (Congo) with support from the Congolese government.

- D.E.S.S. in Management, offered in Lebanon, taught in the facilities of USEK (Université du Saint-Esprit de Kaslik). Students can take additional credits after finishing the D.E.S.S. and obtain an MBA from USEK as well.

  • Master of Science (M.Sc)

The M.Sc degree usually lasts between 18 and 24 months, and it can be taken with a research thesis or with a supervised project and additional courses. Candidates should hold a Bachelor's degree (Master 2 / Bac +5 for French candidates, exceptionally students with a Master 1 / Bac +4 can be admitted, but not with just a Licence) in a field such as management, mathematics, engineering, psychology, economics or another field. Most students need to complete a few additional "preparation courses" from the final year of the B.B.A in order to prepare for their option.

Compared to most European Master's degrees in business schools, the degree at HEC Montreal tends to be more focused on research and detailed understanding of the theory, and can be both a preparation for jobs as an analyst/consultant, as well as a preparation to pursue a PhD.

Several options are available in French, including the highly quantitative M.Sc Financial Engineering, as well as M.Sc Finance, M.Sc Financial Economics, M.Sc Applied Economics, M.Sc Information Technologies, M.Sc Analytical Techniques, M.Sc Strategy, M.Sc Accounting Control, M.Sc Organisational Development, M.Sc International Logistics and several other options.

  • M.Sc Global Supply Chain Management (in English)

Since 2012, HEC Montréal offers a master's degree entirely taught in English with courses covering international business networks, logistic systems, transportation systems, decision support tools, distribution, network optimization and the core "Economics and corporate organization" course.

Students can obtain a double degree with the University of Melbourne by spending the first year studying Supply Chain Management at HEC Montreal and the second year studying International Business at University of Melbourne's business school.

  • M.Sc in International Business (in English)

A master's degree offered entirely in English, leveraging the school's position as a North American school with significant ties to Europe (1/4 of students overall), Latin America (they have offered degrees taught partly in Spanish since 2005), Africa (a significant proportion of the student body, especially postgraduates, coming from North and West Africa) and China, where the school has significant experience training executives in the Energy sector.

  • Masters in International Arts Management (in English)

The Masters in International Arts Management is jointly delivered by HEC Montreal, SDA Bocconi (Milan) and Southern Methodist University (Dallas). Students begin at SMU, studying international cultural policy, law and the economics of arts markets. They then continue at HEC Montreal, learning about project management, arts branding, marketing for cultural industries and other aspects of the arts business. Finally, they study strategy for the arts business and complete a masters thesis at SDA Bocconi. The program lasts one year. SDA Bocconi and HEC Montreal have the 1st and 2nd highest number of professors in cultural and arts management (25 and 20, respectively), and HEC's professors are collectively the most prolific authors in arts management publications worldwide.

  • MBA

The school offers MBA programs in French (full and part-time) as well as in English (full-time) with a duration of one year.

  • MBA — Financial Services and Insurance (FSI)

The MBA-FSI is jointly delivered by HEC Montreal, University of St. Gallen, Switzerland and Vlerick Leuven Gent Management School, Belgium. It is an executive program targeted at individuals with high potential to achieve leading positions in firms in the financial services industry. The program runs in Belgium, Montreal, Toronto, Zurich, Beijing, Mexico City and New York, and is thus truly international. It is designed to last 22 months.

  • EMBA

The EMBA Program is delivered for executives with over 15 years of experience. It is a double degree between HEC Montreal and McGill University

  • PhD

Finally, the school offers PhD degrees together with the other universities of Montreal (McGill, Concordia-JMSB, UQÀM-ESG) in several fields related to management, finance and economics.


HEC Montreal is very active in several fields of research: 25 research chairs are based in the school, including 7 Canada chairs, as well as 26 research centres. 14 professors at HEC Montreal are part of the Royal Society of Canada, and research funding was $13 million between December 2010 and May 2011. The school's researchers published 239 articles in refereed journals, 42 papers in conference proceedings and 514 papers in scientific congresses last year, while 59 of its professors published books or book chapters.[5]

World rankings and distinctions[edit]

HEC Montréal has consistently been ranked among the top Business Schools in the world by major publications.

QS Global 200 Business Schools Report 2013-2014 ranked HEC Montréal on the list of 33 Elite Global Schools. According to the report, "Elite Global business schools form an established cadre of the world’s very best business institutions. They are targeted by a wide range of employers, domestically, regionally and globally. Highly international, they typically admit only experienced candidates with superior GMAT scores and all-round credentials. Their name will transform the résumé of any candidate. MBAs will in many cases go on to be influential business leaders, and can expect to earn top salaries upon graduation".[citation needed]

In an employability ranking by Emerging, published in the New York Times in 2012, chairmen and executives from 20 countries were asked which universities they would recruit from. HEC Montréal obtained a 30th position worldwide, and 3rd in Canada, ahead of notable Canadian schools such as York (Schulich), Western Ontario (Ivey), UBC (Sauder) and Queens, and ahead of other notable international schools such as ESCP-Europe (France), Boston University, Georgetown University, New York University, Carnegie Mellon University, etc..[citation needed]

According to an EdUniversal ranking from 2012 and 2013, the school is considered a Universal School (Highest Grades) and ranks as the 24th most influential business school worldwide, right behind LSE (21st), Melbourne(22nd) and NYU (23rd) but ahead of University of Chicago (Booth, 26th), University of Toronto (Rotman, 27th), Manchester Business School (27th), Northwestern University (Kellogg, 30th) and all but one Canadian school.[citation needed]

HEC Montreal was also:

Listed among the 24 Best International MBA Programs in Forbes' 2013 ranking of MBA Programs (outside USA). HEC Montreal is Ranked 3rd among the Canadian programs, placed behind Schulich (York) and ahead of Sauder (UBC) in the list.[citation needed]

""Ranked 12th in the world by Forbes in its " The best international 1-year MBA Programs" ranking. It is the only Canadian institution to make the list.[citation needed]

Ranked 3rd in Canada and Top 100 in the world by The Economist in its 2013 "Which MBA" global ranking of full-time MBA programs. HEC Montreal is placed behind Schulich (York) and ahead of Rotman (Toronto) in the list.[citation needed]

Ranked 14th in the 2012 global ranking of the Top-50 business schools compiled by AméricaEconomía magazine, a standard reference for the Latin American business community.[citation needed]

Ranked Top-2 in Canada and 60th in the World in CNNExpansion's 2012 Global MBA Ranking, another reference for the Latin American business community.[citation needed]

Ranked 15th in Businessweek's 2011 Top Non-US B-School list. It was ranked 10th in the list of "international non-US schools" in both 2006 and 2004.[citation needed]

HEC Montréal is also well known for being a centre of financial expertise.[6] On June 22, 2009, the Financial Times listed HEC Montréal's Msc programmes in finance (MSc in Finance, MSc in Financial Engineering and MSc in Financial Economics) among the best MSc in Finance programmes in the world.[7] The Standard Life-HEC Fund, an investment fund created by Standard Life and HEC Montréal, and managed by the best undergraduate and postgraduate students in Finance, took first place at the 10th Redefining Investment Strategy Education (RISE) Forum in 2010.[8] The Standard Life-HEC Fund also took first place in 2009 and 2008.

In February 2010 Expansión, a prestigious Mexican magazine, listed HEC Montréal's MBA programme among the best MBA programmes in the world.[9] This ranking confirms HEC Montréal's prestige, standing and efficient internationalisation strategy.

Since the Commerce Games, an inter-university competition, were founded in 1989, HEC Montréal's students have brought home first place ten times, second place four times and third place four times[10]

The average GMAT score is 650 for the 2010-2011 MBA class.


The Decelles Campus : 1970 - today[edit]

The Decelles Building

In 1970, Robert Bourassa inaugurated the Decelles building of HEC Montreal, named “the School on the mountain”. The students sometimes use the expression “Bunker” to refer to it. Indeed, its form, the (some say excessive) use of concrete for the exterior facade, and the absence of windows, quickly imposed this expression in the vocabulary of the students.

In 1976, the Ph.D. program was proposed, in collaboration with McGill University. The MSc (Master in Management) program was created the same year. This was perceived as a major evolution for the students and professors of HEC Montreal.

Under the presidency of Pierre Harvey (HEC 1948), the 75th anniversary of the school was celebrated in 1982 with René Lévesque, then Premier of Quebec, in attendance. The 7th floor of the Decelles building was inaugurated on this occasion.

As of 2012, the entire building has been renovated.

The Côte-Sainte-Catherine Campus: 1996 - today[edit]

A side view of the Côte-Sainte-Catherine

HEC's main building was constructed in 1996 and has since won an award for "institutional architecture.[11] The building was designed by Dan Hanganu and Jodoin, Lamarre, Pratte and Associates[12] The building is situated at 3000 Côte-Sainte-Catherine (Map[13]), next to the Université-de-Montréal Metro Station. The former main building at 5255 Decelles (Map[13]) is now used as a secondary building. The first building used by HEC was located in downtown Montreal but is no longer used by the school.

The trading floor of the school was inaugurated in 1997: it is conceived to be able to be used in case the Montreal Stock Exchange ever had major engineering problems. Now known as the National Bank of Canada trading floor, it was renovated in 2007 in order to remain technologically avant-garde.

Notable Alumni[edit]

See also[edit]


External links[edit]