Written on 16 Sep 2020.
The FE track welcomed a total of well over 730 students online from all corners of the world. First and foremost on the FE Track’s priorities for this event was to establish a sense of cohesion amongst EDHEC students right from the beginning of the year despite the major constraints the COVID_19 health crisis has imposed. Their aim, it seems, was a success. As one of our Masters 1 students, Jean Bigot commented: “The welcome session was well structured and for me very clear. It really made me want to spend the forthcoming year at EDHEC…” It was, indeed a real pleasure to welcome to our campus this Monday relaxed, motivated students clearly ready to start face to face classes.
The session kicked off live with encouraging warm words from our Associate Dean, Michelle Sisto, and Laurent Deville (FE Track Director) followed by a prestigious, dynamic speaker from Citibank. Michelle Sisto emphasized the important role the students would have in years to come saying: “At EDHEC Business School, our aim is to make an impact on future generations…” The message they all put across was as strong as ever: EDHEC business school is an outstanding school which gives each of its students the right tools to succeed but the need for individual implication is and will be always essential to achieving professional success. In other words, the path to success has only begun.
We were honored to welcome Kevin A Murray for the M1 session in the morning. Kevin is the Citi’s CEO for Central-Europe and the Citi Europe plc Branch Head and Citi Solutions Centre Head Poland. His career has taken him across the globe. A graduate from some of the most prestigious academic institutions in the world; one of them being the Leonard N. Stern School of Business, his career has been out of the ordinary. During his speech he reflected on banking’s bright outlook for the future, crisis management and the need for responsible banking in this increasingly uncertain ecological crisis.
However, Kevin’s central theme was the attainability of an outstanding future career in finance through hard work and “seizing of the moment”. Murray illustrated that his learning curve to success has not been only formed by his education and initial fast track start at Citibank but also by his many expatriations in numerous different countries within both Asia, Africa, and Europe. Taking in both hands opportunities have been key to his very successful career. Kevin made sure he illustrated the fact that his success was attainable to all of our students if they were prepared to take measured risks while taking on new opportunities. He underlined the importance of the learning curve which every career presents and laid down emphasis on the need to use previous assignments to help surmount hurdles strewn in our paths. However, perhaps one of the most important messages he gave was by quoting the US military admiral, William McRaven: “first make your bed in the morning…” In other words, greater things are built on, what we might consider, smaller things. Each task, however small it might seem, counts. It was perfect advice for our future students who must start their year, however far away, determined to seize every assignment they are given with gusto. However, they must not forget that a new exciting path lies open ahead of them. In Kevin Murray’s wise words to this year’s intake: “Your Future is so bright, so go after it…”
In the afternoon, our M2 & MSc students listened to a panel of three Alumni both new and well-seasoned. Marion Gagnadre (2015) and Luca Frignani (2015), two of our panel members, were good examples of two very different fast track careers. Luca is the CEO and co-founder of Exaloan, a Fintech which develops software to connect institutional investors with digital lending platforms on a global, transparent, and standardized marketplace and Marion is an Equity Derivatives Sales Associate for Goldman Sachs, Paris.
Philippe Leopold was a perfect balance to these two young fast-track graduates. He is an excellent example of the well-respected experienced financial expert who maintains his drive and wishes to go forward. His interesting mix of international experience within first-class financial institutions such as Citi, BNP Paribas (Paris), and Rothschild, is a statement of what could be. His interesting vision of the possible outcome of BREXIT to the financial business world in London gave our students that very important international dimension of our current globalized financial world.
Attainability was the strong message given to all our FE track students this intake.
It is certain that this year ahead will indeed be a little more complicated than previous years, but little has changed. As Laurent Deville, Director FE commented recently: “Focus, determination and hard work, whether online or in the lecture amphitheater, are paramount to success. It is not just about being admitted to a world-class business school. This is just a beginning. Indeed, getting there is all about dedication and determination and when faced with the unknown, being able to gauge risk for each opportunity offered. There is certainly no fixed recipe but these qualities are certainly key to our future success”.