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HEM Business School


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HEM, Hautes Etudes de Management, (French for Institute for Advanced Studies in Management), was founded in 1988, when Morocco was under the rule of the late King Hassan II. Private initiative was not always welcome and the sector of private higher education was in its infancy.


A man, Abdelali Benamour, married and father of 3 children, economist, university professor, first director of the ISCAE (flagship public business school in Morocco) and former MP, decides to embark on the adventure at the age of 46, with a few pennies in his pocket. His dream was to found a school of higher education in management of excellence and train graduates who will participate in the building of tomorrow’s Morocco, graduates who are open-minded, socially responsible managers and change leaders.


Banque Centrale Populaire (first Moroccan public bank) believed in the project and thus invested in it. HEM was born and based its first, brand new campus in a Casablanca neighborhood called “Polo”. An oral and written entrance examination was established straightaway. In the first year, HEM received a hundred candidates. Sixty were retained. An entrance examination in a private school in Morocco? Unprecedented! The son of a Minister or notable that fails the admission test or is late for registration? Denied! At the time, even more unusual… a student fails more than half of the subject matters of the year? Expelled permanently! Still unprecedented… the school was under warning for years. Abdelali Benamour and his team were still clinging to the idea. Quality, values and sense of ethics come first.


As a pioneer, HEM has developed its own model. To be successful as a private school of Higher Education in Morocco, without any help or funding from the state, where the better-off students choose to study abroad, where the class of citizens able to pay higher education fees is small, while the public system is completely free, everything is a question of balance:


– As regards student recruitment, balancing educational and financial logic meant putting in place an entrance exam, not too hard though; otherwise, students would be fewer in number … not too easy either; otherwise, the level and quality of graduates would suffer;


– As regards educational programs, balancing managerial skills, personal development and general knowledge of the learner was in order. Museums, libraries, discussion areas being rare in Moroccan streets, we had to re-create such a microcosm within the school walls;


– As regards infrastructure, balancing investment size and number of expected students was paramount. The built campuses must be adapted to HEM’s educational model, big enough but not too much; enrollment in private higher education in Morocco is unfortunately not by tens of thousands.


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HEM Business School




Avenue Al Qods, Californie II20150 Casablanca

More Info


Number of students (per year) more than 2100


Number of teachers/lecturers: 40 full time and 300 part-time


% of international students (per year): 10%









AUF (Agence Universitaire de la Francophonie)


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