Hi from Germany (Nicholas Toubkin)

The end is in sight!

It’s been incredibly busy during the last few weeks, with a packed schedule of electives – I haven’t had a day off for around two weeks.  Normally, that would be a cause for much moaning on my part (!), but the electives have been so fascinating that I really don’t mind.  I’ve been studying topics as diverse as Islamic Finance, Strategic Partnerships and Social Media Strategy.  It’s been a great opportunity to ‘deep-dive’ into a few areas that particularly interest me, and will help me to be more effective during my forthcoming career.

On Friday I headed off to Germany with around 30 of my classmates.  We spent just one night in Berlin, before arriving in Hamburg last night, and then we are off to Munich tomorrow.  It’s a chance to understand more about German business culture, and an opportunity to find out more about some titans of industry including Airbus.  And obviously, we are trying the local beer too!

Our groups is not the only cohort from IMD travelling right now – a team of 10 or so intrepid individuals are currently on an elective in Brazil, where our professor Carlos Primo Braga is taking the opportunity to leverage his contacts to product a great schedule for the group – they have also made it to the beach on at least one occasion!

In some very important news, a fantastic success is hot of the press at IMD.  Five of my classmates (Alex Knecht, Alex Krstevski, Hersh Shah, Jelmer Hoogendoorn & Tom Cohen) won the Rotterdam School of Management Private Equity contest.  They fought off strong competition from other business schools, including institutions well known for their focus on finance, and demonstrated that even thought IMD is small in size, we’re still big hitters when it comes to our academic and technical abilities!  Well done to all the guys – you’ve done IMD proud!  We are celebrating on their behalf here in Hamburg.

More updates soon – for now, off to sample a key part of German culture – the beerhall!

Nick.