Posts Tagged ‘Madrid#8217;


IE through the eyes of a Chinese student

Written on May 19, 2014 by Dirk Hopfl in IE News

Interview between two Chinese students of IE, Shanshan, who studies the Master in Corporate Communication at IE School of Communication and Cindy, who studies the International MBA at IE Business School. Listen to what they have to say about studying at IE and living in Madrid.

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416 – a unique journey!

Written on August 28, 2013 by Dirk Hopfl in IE News

pic2On day 1 of his International MBA, Prasad Dalvi, started writing about his life at IE and in Spain – so far, every day one post and he aims to continue until all the 416 days of his program are over… Follow his journey on his blog 416!

Luckily, he took some time to answer some questions for this blog and talks about his first couple of months in Madrid. Enjoy!

What have been the most exciting moments of the program so far?

Life here at IE has been an exciting one from day one up until now, and I can’t wait to experience all of what the coming days will offer.
The Grandeur of Opening Ceremony, where emotions, excitement and anticipation was radiating overwhelmingly all around me – the day when we all made it – to one of the finest MBA programs in the world, the day when we all met our future classmates for the first time, the day when we were introduced to the roller coaster ride that is the International MBA here at IE. Wow!! That is one day, memories of which, I will always cherish.
And then, every day of the program brought along its own excitement. To list a few: Winning the IE Net Impact Weekend – the biggest Social Entrepreneurship Venture event organized by MBA students, Meeting Miss Edurne Pasaban [the first woman to climb all Eight-thousanders], John Clendenin and many such stalwarts during the LAUNCH program, facing the raging baby-bull in CAPEA day, jumping off from a plane at 4000 meters along with my fellow classmates, tasting cuisines of different countries, dancing to the tunes of all nations at IE GLOBAL VILLAGE; the list just goes on and on .. and there is going to be more to look forward to.

How do you cope with the workload and writing your blog on a daily basis?
I have been blogging since last 4-5 years and on a variety of topics. When I came here to IE, I knew that this is “once-in-a-lifetime” kind-off experience and I wanted to cherish the everyday little moments associated with this experience. The natural choice I made to achieve this was to writing a blog – one post per day for all four hundred sixteen days that the program is for. So, this blog for me is more than a hobby, and it is this motivational attribute of the blog which has kept me going during all these days.
As for the mechanics of it, during initial days, I used to write the daily post at end of my day, just like people wrote their diaries. But, as I realized that I am going to spend more and more time of the day in School, and I may not have enough energy to go back at 3 AM and then write something, I started making use of the pre-dinner/post-dinner time, when my study or work group usually takes an extended break, for scribbling the posts.

How is your Spanish? Can you get around with only limited knowledge of the local language?
Well, I did try to learn some basic words of Spanish before arriving to Madrid, although it was not much. My experience here in Madrid is that around the School Campus, all shops have an English Menu, and most of them have at least one person speaking English.
Having said that, we don’t really need too many words in our vocabulary to survive in restaurants, shops, supermarkets and bars, etc and there is always Google Translate at our disposal. Hospitals and House-Agreements may be some places where we need to be fluent, but then there are so many friends here, who speak native Spanish, and there is IE Student Office that helps us translate official documents in English; overall, I didn’t face any real trouble for not knowing fluent Spanish.
For those, who are keen to learn Spanish anyways, IE conducts a weekly Spanish learning class, and it’s pretty good. And for those, who don’t wish to have any confusion in restaurants, while ordering their food, go check out the very basic prototype of “The Menu” APP in Google Play Store, which my Entrepreneurship Management group is currently working on.

Madrid claims to be one of the most vibrant cities in Europe. Can you confirm it?
I can confirm it 1000 percent. Madrid is a City where you can just wake up at any hour of the night and be sure that there will be at least a dozen pubs and clubs open; a city which offers food of so many different countries, a city which enjoys a long afternoon siesta, only to come alive at nights; a city where pathways lit up at night for fine outdoor dining experience; a city with museums and gardens and history, and of youth and fashion and football. And one of the best parts of being at IE is to be in a campus right in the heart of this city.

Any tips for prospective students from Asia?
Yes, a couple of them.
One – Come here for the MBA experience, the unique IE experience. Don’t come to IE hoping that it will serve as your passport to be a European Citizen; and don’t reject IE just hearing all the talks about ‘Europe-in-Crisis’. This international experience is much more than any of the above things.

Two – You will be choosing a one year MBA over two year MBAs. It does not reduce the amount of teaching that IE has to offer. Hence, come prepared to give your 200% to this program, as the program will take your 200% anyways. Having said that, come to IE not just for studying, but also to experience many unusual things, because at end of the year, we will all have learned accounting and management and stuff anyways, but we won’t remember our long study sessions, what we will remember forever is our madness.
I just quoted these lines two days back to a friend – let me throw them here as well “At IE, we go home only after closing the school building on weekdays; and closing all the bars and clubs on weekends; and all this happens only after 3 AM. Work Harder, Play Harder – is our mantra”


No easy feat, but it’s done!

Written on June 18, 2013 by Dirk Hopfl in IE News

When the IE Brown Executive MBA March 2012 intake began we interviewed a few of the participants to understand why they chose the program and what they expected to get out of the experience.  Gregorie Perez, Executive Director at Gifts and Graces in Manila, was one of the participants we interviewed (see the original interview here).  Fifteen months later Joël McConnell, IE’s Director of International Development for Asia Pacific, caught up with Gregorie in Madrid to see how the program went.


JM: Gregorie, first of all congratulations for your graduation! What have been your personal highlights of the program?

GP: Overall, I’m more than satisfied with the program and I’m really proud and happy at having completed this big step in my professional career.  For me, the best parts of the program were primarily:

1)      The friendships I have developed with classmates, as it really was an honor to have been part of such a diverse cohort

2)      Madrid (which is a wonderful city in October, but is even better in June!)

3)      Having been part of such an innovative program that really does allow students to gain a broader perspective, better their critical thinking skills, and also acquire hard business skills too.

At the same time, I have to be frank that the program wasn’t easy!  The final exam presented a big challenge, especially as the case assigned was only provided 30 days before graduation. Concretely, the final exam focused on a PPP project between the Brazilian government and GSK, specifically surrounding the dengue epidemic. While we had to use the case to showcase everything we learned during the program, we had to present our recommended course of action as if we were GSK employees, no easy feat!


JM: That sounds like an exciting finale of the program! What would be your top recommendations for potential candidates applying to an MBA at IE?

  GP: Be yourself, especially during the admissions interview.  The admissions process at IE is very interactive, and it is as much about the school choosing you as it is about you choosing IE.  Being yourself will help both sides gauge whether you’re a good fit for the program at IE.  When completing the application form, use the essay components to differentiate yourself.

If you are admitted to the program, keep in mind IE handpicks its program participants and if you were chosen, there is some special value you bring as a student on the course.  So, be generous once you’re in and share your expertise and knowledge with your peers.  Being overly competitive can be counterproductive in innovative programs like the IE Brown Executive MBA, the idea is to learn from the program and your (very experienced) peers.  The master degree is not just about getting an education, it’s about a “whole” experience – something you’re more likely to get at a top European school.  But keep in mind also that by doing the IE Brown Executive MBA, you get the benefit of being an alumnus of both a top European school and a top US school.


JM: Now being alumni with a lot of sudden free time, what are your next plans?

GR: Well, I’m off to see the best of Spain, France and Italy.  When I return to the Philippines, I will dedicate myself primarily to developing a design lab at Gifts and Graces. I expect to apply my knowledge from the MBA with regards to creating and managing the lab, and I will use crowd-sourced funding to fund this project.  In fact, if someone is interested in learning more about the lab and how to participate in the funding process, they can see here for more information.

My passion and mission is to make a real difference in my local community.


Faces of IE University

Written on December 20, 2012 by Dirk Hopfl in IE News

Unsure on what would be the study environment when you’re studying in a foreign country. This video helps you to understand what IE University is like and the happiness of our students!

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IE’s full-time MBA ranked top 3 worldwide: Businessweek

Written on November 24, 2012 by Dirk Hopfl in IE News

According to the latest Bloomberg Businessweek’s biennial ranking, IE Business School is third among international programs.

IE Business School’s full-time International MBA is a 13 month program taught in both English and Spanish (with bilingual opportunities) and is designed for professionals who average five years work experience and are seeking an intense learning opportunity in a major European capital.  The student body hails from around the world.  This year, the International MBA program includes 87 percent foreign students from 76 countries.  The diverse campus, combined with IE’s innovative and entrepreneurially focused curriculum, results in a truly unique MBA experience that prepares students to become the globally-minded leaders of tomorrow.

The Bloomberg Businessweek ranking further consolidates IE Business School’s position in the field (see the School’s position in other business school rankings here.)


Madrid, Europe’s sunniest capital… and what else?

Written on October 16, 2012 by Dirk Hopfl in IE News

Madrid is not only Europe’s most sunniest capital with more than 300 days of sun per year. There are many more things to learn about… Watch and you’ll get surprised about the variety of attributes Europe’s most vibrant city can get.

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IE University || Study your BBA entirely in Madrid

Written on January 26, 2012 by Dirk Hopfl in IE News

The Bachelor in Business Administration will comprise two sections run in Madrid and Segovia as from the 2012-2013 academic year.

IE University’s Bachelor in Business Administration will have a section based in Madrid for the coming 2012-2013 academic year in addition to that of Segovia. The Madrid-based option is the latest addition to IE University’s business administration programs, which to date have been run exclusively at the University’s Segovia campus. Both sections will offer a degree program with a markedly international slant and a special focus on entrepreneurship, with the same faculty, program content, and extracurricular activities.

The launch of this new section marks a new development phase for IE University designed to offer new options to students. IE University students can now opt for the Madrid-based campus situated in the city’s financial district, or the historic Segovia campus housed in the Santa Cruz la Real convent built in the 12thcentury, with 1,100 students from 75 countries.

The Bachelor in Business Administration, recently accredited by international management education accrediting agency AACSB, will be run in both English and Spanish in both Madrid and Segovia. It is an officially recognized degree program with 200 students from 52 countries who receive a solid education oriented to doing business in a global arena.

The differentiating feature of the program is that it combines management education with a solid grounding in humanistic values in an international environment. Students undertake highly diverse activities such as the Social Impact Project internship program, whereby they work with NGOs and Spanish and international institutions on innovative projects focused on social development in different areas of the world.

“IE University’s commitment to a dual campus will benefit future students by providing broader educational options,” said Salvador Carmona, Rector of IE University.


This is IE!

Written on October 14, 2011 by Dirk Hopfl in IE News

Enjoy some of the most recent impressions about IE, the facilities and its people!


Madrid signs collaboration with IE

Written on September 13, 2010 by Dirk Hopfl in Live IE

The mayor of Madrid, Ruiz-Gallardon, signs a collaboration with IE Business School which addresses four key areas: entrepreneurship, economy, innovation and worldwide promotion.

IE Business School is to produce management education tools based on the public administration model of the city of Madrid, including keys to the social and economic transformation achieved by the city in recent years.  The collaboration agreement signed today by Madrid Mayor, Alberto Ruiz-Gallardón, and President of IE Business School, Diego del Alcázar, also includes a plan for employees of Madrid City Hall’s Tourism City-branding Department to undertake IE programs. Moreover, IE Business School will be providing support in the design and management of the content of a Chair in New Technologies, set to be inaugurated in the near future, as well as providing consulting services for startups in the business incubator run by City Hall, where IE students will be able to place their business startups free of charge.

With this agreement the two institutions, one public, one private, will join forces to promote economic recovery in Spain’s capital. The Mayor commented that “this mutual support has come at a time when it is most needed, and will hinge on four key areas: economic analysis, innovation and technology, tourism, and entrepreneurship.  

Ruiz-Gallardón talked about how both IE Business School and the city of Madrid had evolved since the 1970s, saying that “Economic recovery is possible”. In 1973, the total value of all goods and services produced in the city of Madrid stood at less than 4,000 million Euros and a large part was centered around public administration. Madrid’s metro network covered just 50 kilometers at the time, the city was a full day´s journey from Spain’s coastal regions, and Madrid’s Barajas airport received some 3 million passengers. That year, a group of entrepreneurs, headed by Diego del Alcázar, founded an private business school to provide top-tier postgraduate programs in the field of management education in Spain, which until then had only existed in Barcelona.  

The Mayor continued by saying that today the average per capita income of a citizen of Madrid has multiplied by 16, production stands at more than 120,000 million Euros, and business activity no longer revolves around the public sector, “because we are now Spain’s main business hub.” Gallardon also remarked that the Madrid Metro is six times larger than in 1973 and one of the most extensive and effective underground transport networks in the world. High-speed trains can now reach Malaga or Barcelona in little more than a couple of hours, and Barajas receives 50 million travelers each year.

In much the same way, over the last 37 years IE Business School has gone from being a small business to become a worldwide leader in management education. IE’s first annual intake comprised fewer than a hundred students, whereas now there are almost 8,000 each year, with more than 40,000 alumni living and working in 102 countries around the world. Ruiz-Gallardón rounded off by saying that “the school’s original program is now one of the best one-year MBA programs in the world, according to the Wall Street Journal, as well as the best online MBA program in the world, according to The Economist, or the best Executive MBA in Europe, according to BusinessWeek”.

Mutual support

The Mayor went on to comment how IE enjoys its current position in large part thanks to its location in the unique city of Madrid, which has afforded the School enormous prestige. But he also noted that a substantial part of Madrid’s transformation was thanks to IE. He argued that business schools play a pivotal role in stimulating the economies of the cities in which they are located. They generate employment and wealth, foster social progress and professional development, and work in tandem with public policies from the private sector to attract and create talent, and strengthen the city’s image.

The Mayor declared that these were all very good reasons for establishing closer collaboration that will bring substantial benefits for the city, serving as an engine for growth and knowledge. Said benefits will be the end result of a series of actions based on four key areas:

Economic analysis. IE is interested in using the management model used for the social and economic transformation of the city of Madrid over the last ten years to design new teaching tools for its programs. The Mayor added that “We are proud that the best business school in Spain, which is also one of the best in the world, is using Madrid as a model for public administration”.

Innovation and technology. The agreement will serve as a platform for both parties to work together in this field, and for IE to design and manage the design and content of a Chair in New Technologies, which will be constructed in the Boetticher hanger and launched in the near future.

Tourism and city branding. Employees from the Tourism Department of City Hall will undertake programs run by IE. A prestigious business school like IE plays a key role in showcasing the city to the world, “Which is why Madrid City Hall is going to work together with IE on international campaigns aimed at promoting the school and thereby helping to sell the city”.

Entrepreneurship. Finally, Madrid City Hall will work with IE to promote entrepreneurship in three ways. Firstly by providing support in the drafting of a document about entrepreneurship in Madrid that will form part of the GEM (Global Entrepreneurship Monitor) report, a benchmark in comparing levels of entrepreneurial activity around the world. The GEM report normally focuses on countries, but this will be the first year that Spain will provide specific information on a city. Secondly, IE will provide counsel for new businesses in the City Hall start-up incubators, and thirdly, the incubator facilities will be available free of charge to entrepreneurs studying at IE.


Madrid, one of the 10 most liveable cities in the world

Written on August 3, 2010 by Dirk Hopfl in Live IE

Madrid stands for quality of life. The capital is up two positions in the annual ranking of the 25 most liveable cities published by the British magazine Monocle, taking the tenth position. The Urban Quality of Life Index, featured each year in Monocle’s July edition, has become a world standard used to measure the urban parameters that define each of the cities that make it into this prestigious list.

Madrid has jumped up the scale for the third year in a row after taking the 13th and 12th positions in 2008 and 2009 respectively. Of the 25 cities included in the Index, only seven have improved their position in 2010 compared to the previous year, and only three of them stand among the top ten.

By making it into the top ten of the world’s most liveable cities, Madrid now shares a privileged status that only includes three other capitals with over three million inhabitants: Tokyo, Paris and Melbourne. Despite the general Spanish context, the capital is still an appealing place to live in and invest in.

For more information on Madrid, please visit

… found @ Inside España Newsletter

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