Insights from an IBA student – Marina Arnaudova

Insights from an IBA student – Marina Arnaudova



Even though I am still learning, I can say that I have already received extensive knowledge in business matters and codes of conduct.”



Name: Marina Arnaudova         
Age: 20
Home city and country: Varna, Bulgaria
Previous studies: First Language School in Varna, Bulgaria. Majored in English, Mathematics and German

Why did you decide to do the IBA programme at RSM?

“I applied for the International Business Administration programme at RSM because of its outstanding reputation and its high-quality programme through which students gain the knowledge and work ethics of successful business professionals. And now, even though I am still learning, I can say that I have already received extensive knowledge in business matters and codes of conduct.”


What do you like the most about the IBA programme and what are your favourite courses so far?

“I really like the IBA’s multicultural environment. My class represents more than 50 nationalities, which gives me the opportunity to learn more about different cultures around the world. Having friends from Cuba, Russia, Azerbaijan, the USA and many other countries not only makes it challenging to find proper ways of communication, but also makes it extremely fun and interesting. I also broadened my social network which I hope will be helpful in my future career.”


What are your fellow students like?

“My fellow students are mostly international and also Dutch. Everyone is eager to know more about the others’ cultures. People are friendly, open and approachable. You need less than a trimester to get to know your whole class of 400 students. IBA students are all very motivated. Since many of us travelled from far to study in this programme, we all try hard to succeed in our studies. Also, my fellow students are determined to develop themselves outside of the courses. Most IBA students are really adventurous. They are not only trying out extra-curricular activities, but also get excited when it comes to travelling and new experiences.”


What are the biggest differences between the Netherlands and your home country?

“Soon after I started at RSM I realised that people here are much more career-oriented than in Bulgaria. The Dutch culture is more individualistic. People really want to achieve something in their lives and mostly try to do things on their own, while friends and sometimes family are a lower priority.


How are you experiencing life in Rotterdam?

“I found a really nice apartment prior to coming to the Netherlands. I found it on HousingAnywhere. The rent is €500 per month, including utilities. I live with a Russian master student from RSM and we get along quite well. I travel to RSM by tram, which is about €3 euros per day. Food is quite cheap in local stores but if you buy your groceries from the big supermarkets, such as Albert Heijn, it may cost around €40 per week, depending on your diet. Something else that you should consider when calculating your budget is that you have a lot of opportunities to travel to the neighbouring countries. And going out for drinks can be more expensive than Eastern Europe.”


What advice would you give to future IBA students?

“All I could say is: Try to seize all opportunities that RSM and IBA offer you. In addition to your studies you should participate in different events, join student organisations, explore your ideas and keep your mind working. This will not only boost your creativity but will make your stay in Rotterdam much more pleasant.”


What would you like to do after the IBA programme and what are your long-term plans?

“I’ve decided that after the IBA I’d like to do a master programme to specialise in the field that strongly interests me. I’m considering RSM’s MSc in Finance & Investments programme. And as far as my long-term plans go, I hope that in a few years I’ll be working in an international company and excel in my chosen field.”