While the presentations of the Masters and the School (Academic Coordination and Professional Careers) were given separately at both the Joaquín Costa and Príncipe de Vergara campuses, the teambuilding activities and cultural tour were organized jointly, with all the students embarking on the new session, to give them the opportunity to get to know each other, regardless of the Campus they are studying at and the academic program they are taking.
On the first two days, Tuesday 17th and Wednesday 18th October, they received a warm welcome to the School, having their first contact with teachers and classmates in the presentations. During the session, as well as finding out about how the School operates, they also had the chance to break the ice. As the Director of the Master in Supply Chain Management & Logistics, Elena Bulmer explained, “we meet the group and find out how heterogeneous it is, Generally, we create a good initial atmosphere. Everybody is nervous when starting a Master of this type”.
The cultural diversity of the students is precisely one of the key features of EAE Business School. In the School’s corridors we come across students from a wide range of countries: Spain, Mexico, Colombia, Peru, Chile, the United States, France, Portugal, Italy, etc. Ángel Andreu is the Director of the MBA and, after meeting his group, he told us that it includes “students of 24 nationalities and different experiences that range from entrepreneurs and family businesses to professionals working in large companies. In other words, it is an extremely diverse group made up of all the world’s cultures and that makes it a fantastic group and a great opportunity”.
Many of the new students have chosen to come to the School based on recommendations from former students. This is the case of María Isabel Bravo, a Peruvian student who is starting the Master in Corporate Communication Management at the new Príncipe de Vergara Campus. “A couple of my friends from Peru have come to EAE and the experience they described to me was very positive”. This recommendation was a decisive factor in her decision to take the Master abroad, as well as “gaining experience of international life and challenging myself to take on completely different situations”.
Meanwhile, Rocío Masías has come all the way from Mexico to take the Master in Human Resources Management. She hopes to get qualified in a sector that she knows well, as she is the Director of Personnel at a state company called the Comisión Federal de Electricidad, “the only company that provide an electricity service to the entire country”. She explained that the company had granted her leave for 10 months before taking up the same position on her return, but with greater knowledge and new ideas to implement. “In Human Resources, we face exciting challenges as the new generations are looking for different values and companies have to adapt. There is a lot of work to be done and I hope that the Master enables me to implement new projects”, added the student.
It was not only the students who were full of enthusiasm for the new academic year they were embarking on with Welcome Week. The Master teachers and directors were also keen to meet their new students, give them an overview of the courses and academic faculty, and offer them some initial tips for tackling the challenges that lay ahead of them. According to Víctor Conde, the director of the Master in Marketing and Commercial Management, a crucial factor will be the “enthusiasm, passion and effort shown by the students at the School, as well as the networking opportunities they will have”. During the program presentation, he advised students to “be demanding of the professionals that will stand in front of you, because you are going to have a faculty of excellent lecturers. It is up to you to get all you can out of us”.
In addition, Carlos Andreu, the director of the Master in Business Intelligence and Technological Innovation, highlighted the fact that the lecturers are also “industry professional who use real cases from their firms”. Before meeting his students, Carlos emphasized that studying Business intelligence “is the future”, being involved in the majority of the market’s needs in terms of contracting professionals for decision-making processes, data analysis, etc. “Business intelligence has always existed. However, we are only seeing the great boom now, thanks to digital transformation. People with analytical capacity are needed, who can make decisions based on information, and this requires a set of tools and competences that we will equip students with”.
The students on this program in Business Intelligence include Víctor Parranza from Spain and Román Rauseu from Venezuela. Víctor has a background in the field of marketing, specializing in market research. He wants to “get the absolute maximum possible out of this Master”. Meanwhile, Román is a telecommunications engineer. With respect to the Master and the School, he expects to gain “experience and learning, as well as taking full advantage of all of the opportunities available”. He adds that he will make the most of the events organized by the School, “in order to build a good network of contacts”.
Almost 1,000 students take part in a teambuilding session with a twist
On Thursday morning, almost 1,000 students participated in the teambuilding activity organized in the Príncipe de Vergara Campus. Not only students based in this building took part in the activity, but rather students from all three Madrid Campuses, as the aim of the teambuilding exercise was to get to know classmates from other countries, programs and campuses.
The big new development this year was that the teambuilding session was divided into activities both on and off the Campus, giving students the chance to interact with the surrounding area, the nearby stores and even the National Music Auditorium. While, on the Campus, they took part in the familiar roleplaying activities and building games, outside they played games involving exchanging objects and body percussions. “With an object of little value, such as a pen, and in relation to a topic, such as travel, we had to exchange it for another object of higher value with people in the street. In our group, we managed to get an avocado, which represents the food from another country, as well as creams and antibiotics that you would pack in your suitcase”, explained Inés Sancho Galván, a student on the MIB. In her case, she studied business and is interested in getting qualified in international trade. Moreover, the fact that the Master is in English was a key factor in choosing the program.
During the exchange activities, we met a group that highlights the cultural diversity of EAE Business School. The students from a wide range of countries and programs were chatting and working together: Sonia and Lili from Spain, who are both taking the Master in Human Resources Management, Enio from Puerto Rico, taking the Master in Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Sandra from Colombia, taking the Master in Corporate Communication Management, and Michelle from El Salvador, a student on the Master in Digital Marketing and Electronic Commerce. “I really enjoyed the teambuilding session. It gave us the chance to get to know each other, people from other countries, cultures, Masters, etc. You always learn something”, explained Sonia. Sandra added that they were sharing information about their countries, traditions and cuisine. For Enio, it will be “funny and challenging, particularly at the start, as we will be working with people of many different nationalities in the class and learning how the market in each country is developing”. They also highlighted the fact that even the Spanish they speak is different, and they discuss the various expressions that they use in each city.
Cultural tour around Madrid de los Austrias
To bring Welcome Week to a close, the students took to the main streets of Madrid for a guided tour of the history of the Spanish capital. Starting at Plaza de Oriente, the tour continued to Catedral de la Almudena, Calle Mayor, Plaza de la Villa, Calle Sacramento, the Mercado de San Miguel and Plaza Mayor, finishing off at the famous landmark of the Puerta del Sol.
This tour is particularly designed to help international students find their feet in the city, such as Flor Picota, a student on the Master in Corporate Communication Management. She has been in Madrid for just 24 hours, so she felt that the tour was “almost obligatory”. Flor comes from Panama and she has already had an international experience on an exchange program in Germany. “I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend it, particularly in the case of Latin American students, as Europe is completely different in terms of the dynamic of life, the style, the safety, etc. It really broadens your mind and perspective”. Specializing in the area of sustainability, the EAE students explained that there are opportunities in her country but, to be able to capitalize on them, she decided to take the Master.
Agüeybaná del Valle has come from Puerto Rico to take the Master in Project Management. It is also the first time that he has been to Madrid and he is interested in the various cultural tours that the School runs. “In my opinion, taking part in the tours will be the best way of making the most of my time here and getting to know Madrid”, he explained. With respect to Welcome Week, the student emphasized how much fun he had in the teambuilding session, where he met “lots of people, none of whom are taking my program, which is great for me, because I am happy to get started in terms of networking”.