Monday, 09 December 2013
Deutsche Telekom now has new master in business administration graduates among its employees after they successfully completed the first accredited customised executive Master of Science in Accounting and Financial Management programme at Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM). The benefits will be felt not only by the company, as their company chief explained, but also individually by the new graduates who spoke of enhanced networks within their company, their departments, and within the global alumni network of RSM.
This pioneering first cohort of graduates, all of whom work for the company and were especially selected to take part in the two-and-a-half year Executive MSc in Accounting and Financial Management programme, received their diplomas and master degrees at RSM last week. They were welcomed by RSM’s programme director Hans Horstink, and by Jaap Spronk, RSM’s Academic Dean of MBA Programmes and Professor of Financial Management Science, who described the graduation ceremony as ‘the beginning of new adventures’.
The RSM Executive MSc in Accounting & Financial Management is an in-company Master of Science programme designed and customised according to the skills and knowledge needed by a company’s employees. A total of 37 participants, all participants of the Deutsche Telekom Professional Programme in Finance, graduated from the diploma programme, and of those, 16 also completed the second phase by researching and writing a master theses in order to receive the MSc degree. Some 15 participants have yet to submit their thesis and will hopefully receive a master degree in January 2014.
Guest speaker was Johannes Kaumanns, Deutsche Telekom’s Head of Group Controlling DBU & New Business, who told the new graduates and their families and friends in the audience that from his perspective, the graduates’ new skills were important for the future of the company. His role is to look for the financial perspective in the group’s growth. “The company says your education in finance is important,” he said, and gave the graduates advice to make sure their new education was put to best use; never stop learning or asking questions, always look for another perspective on your problem, don’t take everything too seriously, and be open to future opportunities, he said.
Academic Director Professor Frank Hartmann, who, together with programme director Hans Horstink, led the RSM Executive Education team which devised and delivered the NVAO-accredited Executive MSc Accounting and Financial Management programme for Deutsche Telekom, said: “It’s clear that globalisation and intense competition have implications for businesses as well as for career and personal developments, and for choices in family life, but that dealing with uncertainty is part of life."
"From an RSM perspective, it has been great fun to train future financial professionals from such a renowned firm," he said. He had observed changes in the students during the duration of the programme, and also in the company, but reminded the new graduates that 'the degree in your pocket has a great value in the business world.'
Referring to the master theses written by the Deutsche Telekom graduates, Professor Hartmann said they had really demonstrated their abilities. "I’m truly impressed with the ones I have seen," he said. He admired the way the students had stepped aside from their day-to-day jobs to put on 'analytical glasses', to have kept up with their goals, and to have persevered to completion of the thesis.
He had little to add to advice already given by Johannes Kaumann, saying: "I think we’re very much in line. Ask critical questions, and take a critical perspective – this is useful, although not always a simple process. But I’m sure you have gained new depths in your analyses."
He concluded by reminding the new graduates to stay in touch with each other, and with RSM. As new members of RSM’s growing 28,000+ international alumni network, they now have access to a range of opportunities for lifelong learning and professional development, post-graduation and throughout their careers. RSM’s Corporate and Alumni Relations team co-ordinates activities for this thriving, growing and lively community through regular activities, events and publications.
Master graduate Christian Heck was presented with a bronze Erasmus statuette for the best overall performance during the diploma programme.
New graduate Steven de Cocq van Delwijnen made a presentation on behalf of all the participants. In the three years since the programme started, some people had married, others had had children and others made career changes, he said. "It’s real life, and it’s good that things change all the time."
Steven de Cocq van Delwijnen recalled three years ago, as the Deutsche Telekom Professional Programme Finance had begun with a welcome meeting in Bonn. "It felt special when we were selected as students of high potential", he said, but admitted that it also made him a little uneasy with the weight of expectation.
Participants had to apply to take part in the Executive MSc in Accounting and Financial Management, a practically-orientated academic education, which is the first in the Netherlands to be accredited by NVAO (Nederlands-Vlaamse Accreditatieorganisatie), the Dutch-Flemish accreditation organisation.
Part of the application process asked applicants to give three reasons wanting to study. "I said first that I wanted to broaden and deepen my financial knowledge, and practical theory. That gets a tick – we have covered a lot of that," he said.
"Second, I said I wanted to share the knowledge within Deutsche Telekom. And third, I said I wanted to broaden my network within Deutsche Telekom. That has certainly happened, not only within the company and between students, but also within the finance department and within RSM. And I'm really grateful for that," he said.
The Executive Master in Finance Programme consists of two phases. Phase 1 consists of eight core modules grouped in four content-related blocks. Completing phase 1 will qualify participants for the Graduate Diploma in Accounting and Financial Management. Participants who wish to earn the Executive Master of Science in Accounting and Financial Management also need to complete phase 2, comprising of a research methods workshop, conducting research and writing a thesis.
Are you interested in our in-company MSc in Accounting & Financial Management? Please contact Hans Horstink, Learning & Development Manager on +31 (0)10 4089511 or by email at hhorstink(at)rsm.nl