One of the main merits of the ESCP Bachelor in Management (BSc) is definitely that of connecting, in the same class, young talents forged by different cultures and life experiences. An extraordinary example of this variety is Haingo Nomena Andriantahina, a determined and charismatic young lady from Madagascar.
Despite her age, Nomena has already struck a remarkable series of personal successes. As an ESCP Business School and ESADE graduate, she will soon embark also on a new adventure as a student of the prestigious University of St. Gallen.
We interviewed her to learn more about the motivation behind choosing ESCP Business School and how the Bachelor experience has shaped her goals for the future.
Studying abroad: a stimulating challenge
At the time of choosing her university path, Nomena was no stranger to the ‘abroad’ dimension. That’s why the BSc formula, which takes students to three different ESCP campuses during the programme, resonated so well with her personality. “Being an avid traveller, I found the idea of moving to a new country each year challenging but very appealing,” she confirmed to us.
Paris – Madrid – Berlin, three linguistically and culturally opposite destinations, composed her educational path at ESCP Business School. “I chose Paris because it felt like home. I grew up studying in the French system and had family and close friends in town. Then Madrid seemed like a good transition for a first ‘alone’ experience abroad, thanks to its warmth and liveliness. Finally, I wanted to explore the unknown and get totally out of my comfort zone, so I ended my adventure in Berlin.”
Each city had a significant yet different impact on her journey, and each still holds an exceptional place in her memory. Ultimately, the BSc experience also significantly influenced her future choices. “I loved the experience so much that I have continued to move to new cities every year for almost five years now,” she noted.
Management: an inherited passion
As a child of entrepreneurs, Nomena has always considered management one of the career paths she would have liked to follow. Then, the Bachelor in Management (BSc) helped narrow her field of interest. “The programme has the considerable advantage of being broad enough to allow you to explore many business areas. It indeed helped me set ideas for my future career,” she added.
In fact, in her 2nd year, Nomena discovered her particular affinity for Marketing during the lectures of Prof. Laura Reyero. “I literally fell in love with this subject,” she admitted. “It allowed me to unleash my creative side while keeping a certain degree of analytics, which I still enjoy very much. I was once told that the perfect marketer is half artist, half scientist, and I thought that was a perfect fit for my personality.”
But learning at ESCP often takes place outside the classroom as well. Thanks to the vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystem encouraged by the School, students have access to unique hands-on experiences to put what they have learned into practice. This is the case for STAIY, the first sustainable fashion marketplace funded in 2019 by five BSc students, where Nomena challenged herself as a Retail Manager.
“Working at STAIY has been both inspiring and rewarding,” she recalled enthusiastically. “Inspiring because you get to see what people of your programme have achieved and rewarding because they were not afraid to give me responsibility and autonomy from day one, as we came from similar backgrounds.” Experiencing a business from a retailer’s perspective has undoubtedly been an eye-opening and insightful addition to Nomena’s academic education.
Teamwork: a lesson in the lesson
According to Nomena, teamwork at ESCP was not only about working in a group but, above all, about working closely with at least four different nationalities. In fact, the ESCP Bachelor in Management (BSc) prepares for a multicultural workplace through the direct sharing of experiences and points of view among students.
“The whole experience allowed me to share my culture, which is still very much unknown,” she explained, “but I was also able to add a little of my unbridled Malagasy spirit to each project I participated in. It was all about the little things, such as adding some storytelling to a presentation or giving a project more time to mature despite the rush.”
Finally, being forced to amalgamate different ideas and opinions also teaches the subtle art of negotiation. Reaching an agreement, as a matter of fact, can be a real challenge. “I realised how important it was to know how to resolve conflicts but also when to speak up and when to stand back to avoid making the situation worse,” revealed Nomena. “It is absolutely one of the most important skills I’ve learned during these three years.”
Learning: a lifelong journey
Just as Nomena’s cultural background perfectly represents the multicultural vocation of ESCP Business School, her approach to education embodies the School’s idea of lifelong learning. And the BSc team is more than proud to have helped equip such a young talent with the needed tools to transform into the professional – and the person – she wants to become.
“I am convinced that my degree at ESCP facilitated my admission to ESADE,” she confirmed. “First of all, it gave me all the business knowledge I needed to pursue a Master’s degree, not to mention all the soft skills such as teamwork, communication, adaptability and public speaking.”
Good interpersonal capacities and soft skills are undoubtedly highly sought after by top educational institutions like ESADE, which value international exposure in addition to academic training. “I felt more prepared and ready to evolve in a multicultural environment compared to some of my classmates who were discovering this type of diversity for the first time.”
Yet, Nomena’s journey in building up her academic curriculum is far from concluded. “I have recently been admitted to the MIM programme in St. Gallen (SIM), known as one of the best in the field, as a double degree student from ESADE,” she added with a hint of well-deserved pride for the achievement.
Where will all that passion and hard work lead her? “After this experience, I would like to gain experience in the consulting field, putting forward my strategic and marketing skills. I want to lead an innovative and efficient team, passionate about what they do and rigorous and creative in their approaches,” she concluded, adding a final wish. “I also hope to return to my home country as I believe in giving back to the community you came from and building a legacy for future generations.”
Well done, Nomena! Thank you for being part of the ESCP Community.
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