My experience at ESCP Europe: Ramona
We asked her why she decided to take the course, how she found it, and how it's helped her progress in her career.
What led you to ESCP Europe?
I'm originally from Romania, where I studied marketing, public relations and communications at university.
I also spent one year studying the management and marketing of the luxury industry in Paris, because I knew it was the industry in which I wanted to work.
While I was in Paris, I heard about ESCP Europe and the MMK, and realised it was exactly what I was looking for.
I liked the idea of doing a master's programme that would offer me new perspectives on business and marketing, especially in relation to the creative industries and creative approaches to marketing; these are at the heart of the luxury industry.
What was the programme like?
We had 24 nationalities in my intake, which means you're always learning new things about the world and yourself as you work together. And it was amazing being able to study in both London and Paris.
The programme content shows how special ESCP Europe's professors and administrators are - they've developed a marketing programme that really reflects how creativity is currently challenging business assumptions, particularly through the rise of digital marketing.
As part of the programme, we also got to study the creative industries - music, architecture, the film industry - and spent two weeks studying at L'Institut FranÃ§ais de la Mode, a very famous French design school.
The programme also provides plenty of networking opportunities, particularly through the guest lectures from people working in the business world.
For example, an ESCP Europe alumnus in advertising came to talk to us about his agency and his work with luxury fashion brands. I spoke to him afterwards, and through this contact got an internship in the agency's digital strategy department.
And once you graduate, there are alumni groups that you can join that run networking events.
What was the highlight of the programme for you?
Going to Uganda as part of an ESCP Europe collaboration with a development organisation was the best experience of my life, because it was so different to anything I'd done before.
We went to a centre that offers training in areas like catering and tailoring to HIV-positive 18- to 25-year-olds.
When we arrived, all of the centre's money came from fees for the training courses. Our objective was to find new revenue sources and to give the centre a sustainable future strategy.
We worked in particular on catering, where they had existing resources, and helped them build a new oven which they could use to make cakes to sell.
We then created a marketing plan for the cakes, designing the packaging, finding a local celebrity - a rap star - to give an endorsement, deciding on a pricing strategy, and generally trying to get things up and running.
What did you get out of the programme?
The most important lesson I learnt was to challenge traditional ways of doing things. That's why I got into digital marketing - I wanted to be able to work effectively in a world that's changing fast.
Group work is very important at ESCP Europe and I learnt a lot from my classmates - we all had different interests and backgrounds so everybody added something.
Another student and I are now planning to start our own business alongside our jobs - once you have an idea in your mind, having studied at ESCP Europe gives you the tools to create something tangible from it.
My experience at ESCP Europe: Samuel
We asked him why he decided to take the course, how he's finding it, and what his career plans for the future are.
Why did you decide to do the Master in Management?
My decision was partly career-based, and partly based on the fact that the course looked really exciting! Also, my university had a partnership with ESCP Europe so after two years I could transfer to the Master in Management course.
Academic reputation is probably the most important factor when choosing a business school, which ESCP Europe certainly had.
But the really unique thing about ESCP Europe is that it gives you the opportunity to live, work and study in three different cities, and use three different languages, which definitely appealed to me, even though I only started learning Spanish about three years ago.
What kind of projects are you working on?
At the moment we're doing a case study on the organisation and management of Walmart. We're working in teams of six to analyse their success and predict what kind of challenges they'll face in the future.
Earlier on the course we were set the task of creating a business plan for a shampoo targeted at children. We came up with a product with four flavours in one, and had to do everything from working out costings to branding the product for our target market.
What's the social life like?
There are lots of sports teams and other societies at the student union, which stretches across all five campuses. The teams and societies are very competitive with each other and are always trying to host better social events, which gives us a lot of opportunities to network and make friends!
Also, there are always companies coming to the campus to give presentations, and speakers coming in to do interesting talks - there's always lots going on.
What are your career plans, and how have they developed while you've been on the course?
I've always been interested in strategy, marketing and consumer behaviour - especially in the consumer goods industry. In five years, I want to be working with a multinational consumer goods company, focusing on emerging markets in Asia and Latin America.
By the time I apply for a job, I'll have done three different internships because at ESCP Europe internships in industry are a compulsory part of the course.
You spend six months studying and three months interning in each city, so you have a great chance to check out different industries and different companies and get some insight before you choose where you'd like to work full-time.
Last year, I interned with American Express in foreign exchange. I was working with the marketing and sales team so was exposed to the different aspects of their marketing strategy, which was really exciting.