The Faces of Swiss Luxury photography exhibition graced our Montreux campus this month. The exhibition featured portraits of Switzerland’s luxury industry leaders and was put together by MBA in Design Management student, Margaryta Pugach.
Pugach used the EU network to gain contact with her subjects:
“I was asking all of my lecturers for contacts. So basically, I got all the contacts from them, they were very helpful! Sometimes, I asked people whom I photographed whether they had someone appropriate for my project. This is how I got an appointment with Michael Smithuis – through Laurent Marthaler the owner of the art gallery at Montreux Palace.”
The list features some very prominent names in the Swiss luxury industry. Her subjects include jewelry designer Gilbert Albert, Vice President of Blancpain Alain Delamuraz, CEO of TAG Heuer Jean-Claude Biver and CEO of Tissot François Thiébaud.
The multilingual found it easy to converse with the mostly French natives, as a French speaker herself. She speaks another three languages: English, Russian and her native Ukrainian. Not one to waste an opportunity, Pugach also asked her subjects how photography affects their brand and used the unique opportunity to gather some insight into the luxury field.
Watch our interview with Pugash at the exhibition:
A bachelor’s and master’s at EU Montreux
Originally from the Ukraine, Pugach and her sister came to EU for the Bachelor of Arts in Business & Design Management in 2013. Unsurprisingly, Pugach passed with flying colors – earning a GPA of 3.8.
During her bachelor’s program, Pugach completed a project with EU Montreux faculty member and business owner, Alexandra Broennimann. Before starting the project, Broennimann asked Pugach about her future aspirations and personalized the project to her interests.
The interactive project saw her working on branding with the CEO of Switzerland’s hottest burger joint, Holy Cow. After she graduated, she was offered a paid internship with the group, taking it in conjunction with her master’s program. In her current role as web developer, she supports the group’s website and publishes content in close collaboration with the marketing department.
A connection to student life and the business world
In her both her bachelor’s and master’s degrees, Pugach has found the EU faculty and network invaluable:
“Our faculty either hold executive positions in a company or their own business. They know the sphere, they know the area, they know people. If they can connect students in a little way, it already gives us a huge opportunity. We are a step above other students who only do theory. Practice really makes perfect.”
And how unique the majors and specializations at EU are:
“The courses here are courses that you cannot find anywhere. I’m doing design management program and I’m the only student because its something people don’t know about yet. It’s where you put your business side and creative side together. In future, if you would like to be a consumer behavior specialist, a branding manager or product developer, I think this is the way to go.”