My MBA: Mentorship, Acceleration, and Beyond

Since childhood I have always been a die-hard sports fan, particularly basketball. This passion for sports has shaped my career path and led me to the field of sports marketing and partnerships. Here is my CEIBS story, what led me to the school, my highlights so far and gameplan going forwards.

I previously worked for the world-leading sports marketing and talent management agency, Wasserman, and the commercial arm of UEFA club competitions, TEAM Marketing AG. As a seasoned sports marketer, I have been fortunate to work with several international brands and sports properties, namely developing and deploying market entry strategies.

One of my most notable achievements was playing an instrumental role in launching Wasserman's first-ever local office in China. During this time, I led global cross-functional teams to successfully activate Ant Group's global partnership with UEFA. My time at TEAM Marketing AG in Switzerland further solidified my reputation as a value-driven professional who can grow global partners' presence through the UEFA Champions League in Mainland China, so as you can imagine, I am very much look forward to the upcoming UEFA Champions League Final!


Despite my passion for sports, I knew that I wanted to explore other industries and further expand my horizons. I also wanted to integrate my professional experience into academic frameworks so that I could be able to make better judgments as a future leader. With this in mind, I decided to come back to my hometown and pursue an MBA at CEIBS. My goal was to explore new industries and to apply my expertise in sports marketing to better connect East to West and vice versa. I also aimed to integrate my professional experience into an academic framework and learn from some of the best professors in the field.


Throughout my MBA journey thus far, I have had the opportunity to take a wide range of courses that have helped me to achieve my goals. For example, courses on leadership, strategy, finance and managerial accounting have given me a deeper understanding of the principles that underpin decision-making in business.

I have also had the privilege of learning from some exceptional professors and engaging in stimulating class discussions. These experiences have allowed me to develop a more nuanced understanding of business and management, which I believe will be invaluable as I move forward in my career.


One of the highlights of my MBA journey has been my involvement in an online webinar on Sports Industry 101. The webinar brought together sports industry experts and focused on providing an overview of the sports industry and its various sub-sectors. I joined the webinar as a participant and was also honored to be joined by a representative woman leader in the industry.

The webinar was a great opportunity to learn from experienced leaders in the sports industry and to make more people realize that the potential career development in the world of sports. It was also a chance to discuss the challenges that women face in the industry and to explore ways to promote gender diversity.


Moreover, attending various events and conferences has broadened my perspective and helped me see the connections between different areas of business. Most importantly, it has pushed me out of my comfort zones and allowed me to embrace new experiences.

For instance, I had the privilege of co-hosting the CEIBS x Huifu New Year Night of Arts with one of our Global EMBA alumni, which showcased the vibrant cultural talents within our community. Additionally, I took initiative to establish the first CEIBS Women's basketball team, fostering a sense of camaraderie and promoting gender inclusivity within our community. Furthermore, through my expertise in partnership development and relationship management, together with our brilliant team, we successfully secured a great level of sponsorship partners for the prestigious TEDxCEIBS event, reviving this cherished tradition and leaving a lasting legacy for the CEIBS community.


Throughout my MBA journey, one aspect that stands out is the importance of community. The CEIBS community is characterized by its supportiveness and collaborative nature, and I consider myself fortunate to have worked alongside many talented individuals. Engaging in collaborative projects and assignments with my classmates has not only allowed me to apply and refine my business skills, but it has also been instrumental in developing my interpersonal skills and highlighting the value of teamwork. Together, we have tackled complex challenges, exchanged diverse perspectives, and forged lifelong connections.

My involvement in events, sports, and partnerships has reinforced my belief in the power of community and its ability to drive personal and professional growth. The CEIBS experience has provided me with a nurturing environment where I can continuously learn, contribute, and thrive. It is through these collective efforts and shared experiences that I have gained a deeper appreciation for the collaborative spirit that defines the CEIBS community.


In addition, I plan to create mentorship programs that connect women in sports with experienced professionals in the industry. This will help to create a support system for women in sports and provide them with the necessary resources to succeed.

I am grateful for the enriching experiences and knowledge I have gained during my MBA journey thus far. The opportunity to learn from exceptional professors, collaborate with talented individuals, and participate in events that promote gender diversity in the sports industry has been invaluable.

Serena Li
Effy HE