From November 2021 to April 2022, we have asked people to tell us about putting their I WILL into action. And we have selected the Champions that have shown that they can make their I WILL statements come true in the best way. They will be offered tailored prizes, such as personalised training, access to courses, mentors, and more. Read more about our champions here.

For more inspiration, read the Inspiring Stories from the RSM community; we’ve asked some of those who have already made their I WILL happen to tell us how they did it.

The I WILL Journey

Tell us about your I WILL Journey. We want to hear what you do to implement your I WILL. And we are there to help! What will you learn and how will you impact yourself or others?

I WILL Journey

We have been inspired to read your I WILL Journey applications telling us what you have done to implement your I WILL, what you have learned and how you will impact yourself and others!  

Start your I WILL Journey!

We have now selected the Champions that we think excelled in doing their best to put their I WILL statement into practice, and they have been notified of the tailored prizes that include mentoring and training sessions to help them implement their plans even further. 

Read about them here

The six champions, one from each category, will receive training, mentorship and networking opportunities – whatever helps them further implement their I WILL. Moreover, we will also offer support during the Journey with training, workshops and access to alumni networks!

What you could win

Our Champions that have excelled in showing their ambition, impact and results by putting their I WILL into action have been notified of the tailored prizes they have won to boost their continued learning and self-development. 

Our Champions are leading examples of putting an I WILL into action – people who have not only thought through the implementation of their I WILL statement, but who have also put their idea into practice. 

Read about them here

Benefit Packages

Each of the six Champions will be given a package of benefits based on their needs to further execute activities related to their I WILL statement, and according to the budget and further resources that RSM has allocated for supporting them. Champions will be invited to meet RSM’s Corporate Marketing and Communications department to discuss the content of their benefit package. Details are stated in the rules and regulations.

Benefits packages can contain:

  • Publicity: exposure on RSM’s social media channels, in RSM’s publications and on RSM’s website according to the RSM policy for content distribution, and according to your plan for implementing your idea, and your need to reach a specific network.
  • Profile video created by Erasmus Enterprise
  • Mentoring: we will meet your mentoring needs from our RSM MentorMe community
  • Networking: access to appropriate RSM events, RSM workshops, networking, and seminars.

Coaching and training such as participation in Entrepreneurial Awakening sessions, RSM Executive Education courses, or a one-hour MarCom consultation with Erasmus Enterprise.

Benefits during your Journey

Our Champions that have excelled in showing their ambition, impact and results by putting their I WILL into action have been notified of the tailored prizes they have won to boost their continued learning and self-development. 

Our Champions are leading examples of putting an I WILL into action – people who have not only thought through the implementation of their I WILL statement, but who have also put their idea into practice. 

Read about them here

Tell us what you encounter during your I WILL Journey! We have reporters looking out for the most interesting, unusual or inspiring examples and we feature these on our social media channels. This is your opportunity to get your message out and reach more people in the wider RSM community.

Do you want to be featured with your I WILL and your Journey? Sign up and we will be in touch!

Creating a good pitch will help you make your ambition and goals clearer to yourself – and it makes it easier to know how to ask for help and resources. We will have 50 places on an online pitch training session hosted by Pitch Academy to give away to people who convince us on why a pitch training would benefit their Journey. The training session is run by one of our own I WILL Get in the Ring winners Thom Uildriks. He became a Dutch champion in pitching, and is now training students and executives from all kinds of organisations in pitching.

Do you think you deserve one of these places because you are serious about your I WILL Journey? Do you think pitch training will help you in achieving your I WILL?

Sign up and we will be in touch. We’ll choose the 50 applications with the best motivations to win a seat in the pitch training session. If you’re one of them, you will be contacted with details about joining our online pitch training.

Erasmus Enterprise is a collaborative community on campus at Erasmus University Rotterdam, dedicated to empowering visionary entrepreneurs. Their unique ecosystem combines the best, multi-disciplinary expertise from EUR  and TU Delft, as well as regional investment funds, in one central location – the EUR Woudestein Campus. Erasmus Enterprise brings together the know-how, resources, and networks of Erasmus Research and Business Support (ERBS), Erasmus Centre for Entrepreneurship (ECE), and Tech Incubator YES!Delft, in a single community.

During the I WILL Journey, Erasmus Enterprise has offered participants opportunities for networking and gaining knowledge. Erasmus Enterprise hosted workshops for I WILL Journey participants and organised master classes taught by Erasmus University Rotterdam alumni on interesting topics for entrepreneurs.

Use your willpower to start your I WILL Journey. Or learn from becoming an ambassador or a coach.

I DO Leadership

I DO Leadership is a course run in collaboration between a student boards, coaches and professors. There are lots of student positions in team-based work with NGOs that maximizes impact and learning. See the I DO pages for more about what you can add to the I DO initiative! You could be the next board member or one of the I DO coaches!

Positive Change

With its mission to be a force for positive change in the world, RSM has firmly established its reputation over almost 50 years as one of Europe’s most international and innovative business schools. Do you want to be a force for positive change too?

Or get in touch at positivechange@rsm.nl.

The Champions

The Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM) I WILL Journey selection board have revealed their Champions! After having received wonderful and worthy applications for the I WILL Journey, two journeys stood out strongly. Let’s take a moment to congratulate Hugo Valdivia, RSM alumnus (Fulltime MBA 2013) and Benedikt Albertsen, current RSM BSc International Business student (2023), on becoming I WILL Journey Champions.  

As I WILL Journey Champions, Hugo and Benedikt will receive a benefit package that can include mentoring, training, publicity and entrance to RSM events. The exact contents of the benefit package are tailored to the needs of each Champion, ensuring they can further execute the activities related to their I WILL statement.  

Why they were chosen 

Both Hugo and Benedikt stood out to the I WILL Journey jury because they both have been actively achieving their I WILLs – during their Journey. They have proven that they are bringing their ambitions into reality through their projects. Even though Hugo’s project is just getting started, he clearly demonstrates his tremendous spirit of initiative. He shows a viable path to take his I WILL from concept to pilot to realisation. Benedikt has a personal development story and journey that has close ties to the world of business and business education. In that way, his ideas are applied in a relevant environment.  

Hugo Valdivia

“I WILL contribute to the development of my hometown, Chiclayo”  

RSM MBA Alumnus and founder of the Silentus app, Hugo’s I WILL Journey surrounds the development of his hometown, Chiclayo, Peru. Chiclayo is in severe municipal crisis, and the biggest issue is the collection and management of household waste. For this reason, Hugo has taken it upon himself to research, assess and implement a pilot project to help the citizens of Chiclayo gain other options for their waste disposal and recycling.  

Hugo Valdivia

Benedikt Albertsen

 “I WILL fight injustice with justice” 

Benedikt, set to graduate in 2023 from RSM with a BSc in International Business, is focused on fighting climate change and inequality. Benedikt’s I WILL Journey has combined those two with the foundation of, SAROWA, a start-up company inspired by the principles of Nigerian Ogoni tribesman Kenule Beeson Saro-Wiwa. SAROWA upcycles overshoot fabrics from the fashion industry that have been tossed into landfills. His company repurposes those fabrics into unique, sustainable products. Additionally, every person working for SAROWA receives a fair wage for their efforts. 

Benedikt Albertsen

The I WILL Award

The I WILL Award was held every two years (2012-2020). It offered a €15,000 prize to bring the best big idea into practice. A shortlist of six finalists competed in the exciting final round, a live event that made them pitch their big plan. Each finalist had a limited amount of time to prove to the jury that their willpower can change society and inspire others. Check out the previous I WILL Award finals and read about the winners – and what happened to them – to find out more about their ideas for making a positive change.

Previous I WILL Award winners

The I WILL Award was  held every two years (2012-2020). It offered a €15,000 prize to bring the best big idea into practice. A shortlist of six finalists competed in the exciting final round, a live event that made them pitch their big plan. Each finalist had a limited amount of time to prove to the jury that their willpower can change society and inspire others. Check out the previous I WILL Award finals and read about the winners – and what happened to them – to find out more about their ideas for making a positive change.

I WILL Award 2020

The 2020 award was won by Blockheating, an innovative start-up that recycles and exchanges heat from data processing centres to greenhouses. Other competing impactful business ideas in the 2020 final included upcycling fashion waste, creating a circular economy, and virtual reality technology in outpatient care. 

I WILL Award 2018

In the exciting 2018 final there were two winners. Back in 2018, Boxrs4ALL impressed the judges with its project to donate boys’ underwear to Tanzania for each pair of underwear it sold – it has since updated its business model to help girls too by addressing period poverty, and changed its name to Moja Wear. And Juvoo was the start-up that developed a digital administration buddy for healthcare professionals. Each of the two start‑ups won €15,000 to put their inspiring idea into action.

I WILL Award 2016

Weather data service Kukua won 2016’s I WILL Award. it was co-founded by RSM bachelor graduate Ollie Smeenk, and provided a weather data service for farmers in Sub-Saharan Africa, to enhance food security and cope with climate change. As traditional weather patterns have disappeared, frequent droughts and floods have led to increased famine and 1.5 million tonnes of food are wasted every year. Kukua’s weather monitoring solution used existing low-cost technologies and sent weather forecasts to farmers via SMS to address this problem.

I WILL Award 2014

Dwillo, which provided an online mentoring community, was chosen as the winner for the I WILL Award in 2014. It operated in universities and organisations and facilitated mentoring and coaching relations between students and young professionals. Having a mentor helps mentees in making difficult choices related to study, career and personal development. In return mentors enjoy a fresh perspective and gain intrinsic satisfaction by giving back.

I WILL Award 2012

Carlo Cronauer and Paola Gutierrez Watts, who both graduated from the RSM MBA programme in 2012, won €15,000 of funding for their CroMiDo project, which won the I WILL Award in 2012. It allows donors anywhere in the world to help another person in need with a system of micro-donations sent by mobile phone.

Winners of the I WILL Award

I WILL GITR aftermovie

Inspiring stories

There are thousands of good ideas for positive change in the I WILL community. We’ve chosen a few of the most inspiring stories from those who have already made their I WILL happen, and are highlighting them here. These people’s stories tell us how their I WILL statement went from an idea into action, and how they did it.

Diego Martin de Lagarde

Martin de Lagarde's I WILL photo

Zainab Syeda

Zainab Syeda's I WILL photo

Nazly Abd El Rahman

Nazly Abd El Rahman's I WILL statement

Get inspired

Read how others made their I WILL come true