The Master's programme I never knew I needed…
A scholarship opportunity opened the doorways to study for my Master’s degree at Utrecht University. Before this, I was interested in entrepreneurship but I did not understand what it truly meant to be an entrepreneur or the different aspects of sustainable entrepreneurship. This has since changed after my Master’s programme. I graduated from UU with a new career objective; using entrepreneurship to help others. This objective, alongside the skills I learned during my Master's, has kickstarted my passionate career in the Impact Investments space. I can confidently interact with various entrepreneurs and investors with a clear understanding and analysis of business financial models and value propositions.
The Masters’ programme has an open space for continuous learning. I enjoyed how the whole programme was organised such a way that we could work with companies on real projects, develop and pitch business models to investors and interact with peers from different backgrounds. It was all so practical. I even got to break out of my introversion and networked at different events. Fun fact; through the professional skills grooming and the programme's network, I was able to secure a job before I had even graduated with an INGO. I absolutely hold with high esteem the bridges that my Master's created and the amazing memories and friendships built.
Nsamwa Mwale, MSc graduate
Acquire the tools to become a leader and navigate businesses to greater ends
Utrecht University works towards a better world and you really have the chance to be part of it. Young professors offer you the state-of-the-art knowledge in a peer to peer mode and companies welcome you to make a change in their business routines. I have learned the theory behind how to conduct market analysis through econometric models and securing finance for new ventures, the principles of social entrepreneurship and sustainability and then practiced those skills working within a company to help solving its real business problems. For me and two other colleagues this was the beginning of a start-up adventure.
At Utrecht School of Economics, a vivid international community is what makes the journey unique. You become part of a living lab where professionals exchange their knowledge helping each other becoming leaders of businesses thriving for a better future. Honours programmes are an additional mean to this end. You are challenged to raise the bar and you are invited to follow your true call.
Today -as a GM assistant- I know what I lived at Utrecht University helped me to get where I am. A business and entrepreneurial background tuned with today’s world challenges is what USE enriched my profile with. This is what allowed me to enter RDS 100% Grandi Successi’s team. Looking back at those days I can tell that in an ever-changing world Utrecht University provides you with the mindset and tools to distinguish yourself in every working environment.
Tommaso Mammone, MSc graduate
Advance my career in the field I am passionate about
During my Master's lecturers put a strong focus on sustainability and on creating positive social impact through business, something I was very motivated to learn more about. Throughout the programme we experienced a variety of teaching methods. In one of the courses we were introduced to a wide range of companies, for example in the fields of insurance, finance, and IT. We were asked to help these companies in developing a solution to a challenge they faced. I got interested in a challenge of a finance company that, at that point, I had never heard about. It was Triodos, a non-traditional bank that had sustainability at their core and was looking to find a way to drive the transition of today’s society into a greener economy. Our task was to make a business case out of it and work along with them to achieve a creative and tangible outcome. It was because of this experience that I became very interested in the field, the company and what they were doing to bring positive change in the world. So much so, that about one year later, when a position in Triodos that fitted my professional profile opened, I applied and eventually got the job!
I feel very glad because this Master's was a great way to advance my career in the field I am passionate about. Moreover, I see many elements of the masters reflected on my day to day work: the international environment, the strive for excellence culture, the team spirit, the entrepreneurial mindset and of course the focus on sustainability.
Valentina Lémuz Mendivil, MSc graduate
Keep the planet livable for current and future generations
The world in which we live faces several sustainability challenges such as climate change, the loss of biodiversity or increasing inequality. The aim of business leaders and policy makers alike is to keep the planet livable for current and future generations. Many people think that corporate sustainability is about protecting reputations or doing good on the side, but it goes much deeper. It is about the purpose of an organization and its relationship with the real world. So how can ‘Business and Social Impact’ graduates contribute to an economy that benefits everyone? By combining in-depth academic understanding and close collaboration with impact-oriented businesses we equip future managers with the understanding of the context (i.e. global challenges, policy) and the strategic tools (marketing, corporate finance and impact measurement) that are necessary to navigate the transition towards a sustainable and equitable society.
Dr Friedemann Polzin – programme coordinator