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900 new bachelor graduates on their way to a business career

Nine hundred bachelor graduates celebrated the end of their studies at Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM) in the New Luxor Theatre in Rotterdam. The first ceremony took place on 14 November, and the second on 15 November 2019.



The ceremony for the Dutch-taught BSc Business Administration / Bedrijfskunde (BA) Class of 2019 was attended by 304 out of the 466 graduates. Prof. Eric Waarts, Dean of Education at RSM, opened the event.

BA graduate Mats Numan, who is now enrolled in RSM’s MSc Finance & Investments programme, looked back on his bachelor student years. He said to his classmates that the class supported each other, and that it was ‘awesome that we shared so much which really added value’. Despite the large number of students, the Class of 2019 created ‘a tight-knit group feeling’, Numan said. He concluded by wishing everyone a lot of success with their career, because he was sure everyone was going to succeed.

The new graduates then got on stage to receive their diplomas from Professor Lucas Meijs and Jannet van der Woude. In total, seven of them graduated with the cum laude distinction.

Active support

The next day, 435 students from the BSc International Business Administration (IBA) programme graduated in the same venue. More than 1,200 viewers from 16 countries watched the ceremony live.

RSM’s Dean, Prof. Ansgar Richter, said he understands how important this moment is, as his son recently graduated too. He said to the bachelor graduates: “You are a crucial part of our social capital – now and in the future. We will stay connected, as we need your active support to achieve our mission.”

Richter said the graduates take knowledge from RSM, but “we also learned from you: your initiatives, the questions you asked and your willingness to go beyond the mere requirements. I urge you to become active members of our alumni community.”

Honour and responsibility

Two graduates took the stage to talk about their highlights and challenges in the programme: Carolina Molinare and Lorenzo Magagnin, who are now both in the MSc International Management/CEMS programme, respectively at RSM and at HEC Paris.

“RSM has given us the tools and the motivation to become the leaders of tomorrow. Just take a look around yourself and know that these people, your fellow graduates will go on to achieve many great things and you too can make an impact. And finally, thank you IBA family for the best three years of our lives, for growing up together, and supporting each other in the good and bad times. We now have the honour but also the responsibility to be a force for positive change, act and embody the ‘I WILL’ culture.”

Then there was a stand-up performance by international comedian Gregory Shapiro, followed by the official presentation of the diplomas by Prof. Gabriele Jacobs. Almost 67 students graduated with the cum laude distinction, and 8 with the summa cum laude distinction. The graduating IBA cohort represented 55 different nationalities.

On to a master degree

According to the IBA Graduate exit survey which was completed by 415 graduates, 22 per cent of them choose for a gap year after completing the bachelor, 57 per cent immediately continued with an MSc at RSM and 23 per cent has gone or will go for a master elsewhere. And, 13 per cent of graduates is already starting a career, either by setting up a company to joining the corporate arena.

Proceeds from the token sales at both graduation receptions were donated to Vrienden van het Sophia (Friends of Sophia), a foundation that raises funds for the Erasmus MC Sophia Children’s hospital in Rotterdam. In total, € 10,956 was raised for the charity. The funds will go directly to the development of the hospital’s Child Brain Lab.


More information

Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM) is one of Europe’s top 10 business schools. RSM provides ground-breaking research and education furthering excellence in all aspects of management and is based in the international port city of Rotterdam – a vital nexus of business, logistics and trade. RSM’s primary focus is on developing business leaders with international careers who can become a force for positive change by carrying their innovative mindset into a sustainable future. Our first-class range of bachelor, master, MBA, PhD and executive programmes encourage them to become critical, creative, caring and collaborative thinkers and doers. Study information and activities for future students, executives and alumni are also organised from the RSM office in Chengdu, China. www.rsm.nl

For more information about RSM or this release, please contact Marianne Schouten, communications manager for RSM, on +31 10 408 2877 or by email at mschouten@rsm.nl.

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Alumni , Bachelor / Bedrijfskunde , Bachelor / IBA , Homepage , In the spotlight , International , Newsroom , Master , China