Alfonso Gonzalez

Alfonso Gonzalez

Nationality: Chilean

Age: 33

Job title: Financial manager

Previous degree: Business Administration, Universidad de Los Andes in Santiago, Chile 


"Finding my perfect MBA was quite a search. I was looking for an MBA in which I could share my real-life job experience. It needed to be a one-year programme, and have high rankings. I also wanted to be in a country where people speak good English and the programme was taught in English, so I could improve my language skills. I found all of this at RSM.

In my previous job, I felt like I needed more leadership and technical skills. That’s exactly what I’m learning at RSM. After the MBA, I hope to continue my career in finance and find a job that allows me to connect South America with Europe.

I love that RSM’s classes are based on cases. It’s another way to learn from real-life experiences. Although they’re a lot of work, the cases provide an open view of what is happening now in the world. We get a lot of different perspectives from professors and class mates from various countries.

This international class environment is one of the points that differentiates RSM from other universities. The average age of students at RSM is higher and together we represent around 40 nationalities, making it a rich and diverse environment. We don’t only come from a wide range of professional backgrounds, but we also learn from each other’s cultures and travel experiences. For example, I really enjoyed the International Food Festival at RSM. Everyone was really motivated and prepared food. My favourite contributions were the empanadas from Bolivia and bubble tea with tapioca from Taiwan.

During the Living Management Project, my team had to deal with a big project in an industry that was new to us. We only had two weeks for the project, but with the tools RSM had taught us, we created a strong team to cover the project. It was like a football team, in which everyone’s positions and responsibilities were clear. We all worked hard to achieve our goal. 

The Personal Leadership Development (PLD) track of the programme was new to me. We’re developing our personal skills. The track goes across the different lectures and is created in a way that we work in groups and deal with different personalities in situations that are created. We learn to work under pressure, manage limited situations, and at the same time to respect each other’s backgrounds. RSM gives a lot of value to the feedback sessions, in which we talk to other members of the group. We learn about our own strengths and what we should improve. I’ve learned how to balance and deal with different personalities.

“I’m proud of being a part of RSM” 

Everyone is really personal and friendly here at RSM. When first arriving, RSM’s faculty and staff helped me to settle into Rotterdam. RSM also makes partners feel at home. It organises activities that my wife and daughter can participate in. This way they can also become friends with other MBA candidate’s partners. 

At one of RSM’s alumni networking sessions, I connected with an alumnus who has a common interest in private equity. I also spoke to alumni during the study trip to Brussels. I’m proud of being a part of RSM and when I’m in Chile, I plan to represent RSM and tell people about it. There aren’t many active Chilean RSM alumni. It’s time to start networking events there, such as social drinks.

I’m not going to lie. When people come to RSM, they must be prepared to study a lot. No one should underestimate the workload. Since I’m here with a family it’s more difficult, because I need to find a balance between my private and my study life. Now I’ve survived the first two terms. It was stressful, but my wife and I are so happy in Rotterdam, that we can de-stress in our free time.

This is my first time in Europe and I find Rotterdam a nice and interesting city. It’s not big, but everything you need to have fun is right here. I wanted to be on a city campus, so it would be easier for my wife to find a job so she could also continue with her professional career. We’re renting an apartment in the city centre, not too far from the RSM campus. I enjoy riding my bike in the morning, no matter what the weather is like. This way, I arrive at the campus full of energy. The freedom in the Netherlands to cycle around is great. It’s also easy to travel to other places in Europe, either by plane, train or car. Coming to RSM really changed my life."