In June, under rays of golden summer sunshine, Geneva, Munich and Barcelona played host to the annual graduations that take place across the EU Business School network, adding to those in Kuala Lumpur and Almaty earlier in the year. EU faculty, distinguished guests and proud families alike joined in celebrating the achievements of students on days that will be remembered by students and their families forever.
With each passing year and happy graduation ceremony, the ever-strengthening EU Alumni Network is enhanced and enriched with fresh talent. Although the students’ studies have come to an end, their journey with EU will continue long into their working careers and future lives.
Hotel Pullman Barcelona Skipper, located just a few minutes from Barcelona’s beautiful and iconic port, set the scene remarkably well for what would be a vibrant, joyous and memorable graduation event.
With students and their proud families in place and eager to begin, Alexandre Zeller gave his keynote speech to start the proceedings. Zeller, Chairman of the Board of Directors for SIX, Switzerland’s main stock exchange, captivated students with his account of his own professional journey and ascendancy within the banking world.
Following the intriguing and inspiring address, students and guests witnessed the presentation of the EU awards. Next, the highlight of the day began; the awarding of certificates for students. Over 100 students crossed the stage and collected the document which signified the culmination of years of study and effort.
The cocktail reception that took place afterwards continued long into the Barcelona summer air and was accompanied by the smooth sounds of jazz and a magnificent sunset.
For the second year running, the President Wilson Hotel on the shores of Lake Geneva provided the luxurious backdrop to the Swiss graduation ceremonies. The stylish interior exudes class, an environment that Alain Delamuraz, Vice-President and Head of Marketing at prestigious watch brand Blancpain, and the 2015 deliverer of the Special Address, is more than used to.
The distinguished guest had a dual responsibility; he was also receiving the EU Sustainability Award on behalf of Blancpain. In his speech, Delamuraz outlined Blancpain’s Ocean Commitment and the wonderful work that the project entails. This worthwhile sustainable initiative drove home the importance of being a responsible and globally-conscious citizen for students.
After the students crossed the stage and collected their certificates, the celebrations began in earnest with a cocktail reception inside the bar area and on a sun-soaked terrace. As the evening wound on and the triangles of white making their journeys across the lake grew fewer, the students were given an ideal time to reflect on the years that they spent with EU and where their future journeys would take them.
In the Bavarian capital, EU Munich graduates gathered in the traditional, lavish Hotel Bayerischer Hof; a memorable location for a memorable event.
During the ceremony, an enthralling and charming commencement address was delivered by Brian Cookson OBE, current President of the International Union of Cyclists (UCI). Cookson colorfully outlined his relationship with the UCI, which has its foundations in the 80s when Cookson himself was a cyclist. Cookson gave insights into two very different bodies of experience; over 30 years spent in senior level management in the public sector and a long, illustrious tenure as a cyclist.
Following the rest of the speeches and the awarding of prizes, EU students crossed the stage and made the transition from students to alumni. Students celebrated the transition together and toasted to their futures with a champagne reception and canapés.
May 15th saw 40 successful students from our partner school in Kazakhstan step into their careers. Parents, faculty and students celebrated the end of their MBA and DBA studies, with a guest speech from EU President, Dr. Dirk Craen. The event took place in the New Economic University in Kazakhstan’s biggest city and economic heart, Almaty.
It was a very well-organized affair with drinks after the ceremony and the graduates very kindly invited EU staff to dinner. The dinner was a fantastic occasion with a live band, lots of dancing and communal games. Dr. Craen; Managing Director of EU Barcelona, Carl Craen; and former Director of the International Business School, Almaty, gave toasts. In the Kazakh capital, Astana, there was an intimate ceremony for 10 graduates at the Kazakh University of Economics, Finance and International Trade (KazUEFIT), followed by a lovely meal for the graduates.
EU’s partnership with the New Economic University began in 2011 and with KazUEFIT in 2014. They are seen as an important cornerstone in the rapidly developing Asian markets. Due to our agreement, students at Almaty graduated with dual qualifications as well as an international perspective, having been taught by lecturers from EU as well as from NEU itself. Congratulations to all of the successful graduates and good luck for the future!
The annual EU Asia Commencement Ceremony was recently held in Kuala Lumpur, at the elegant Dorsett Grand Subang; the ideal location for the celebratory ceremony. The event was led by the Director-General of Kota Kinabalu City Hall, Datuk Dr. Yeo Boon Hai, who was also presented with the EU Prince Fellow Award, in recognition of his continuous contributions to the development of EU Asia. The President of EU, Dr. Dirk Craen, awarded 82 students with their bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate diplomas. Students came from a huge range of countries, such as Malaysia, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Cambodia, China, Macau and Bangladesh.