Karlsruhe Business Masters Challenge 2009: Part III

This week’s blog is the final Part III from last week’s blog where I told you about the competition stage of the Karlsruhe Business Masters Challenge 2009.

…After many a coffee to keep me awake, it was announced that later that afternoon three teams would present in the auditorium in front of a panel of nine Judges and all other participants of the competition. The teams would be announced once we were all seated in the auditorium. You can picture the scene, twenty-seven excited, nervous and anxious participants walking through the streets of Karlsruhe to the auditorium, all discussing their chances of selection and their presentation strategies.

We all took our seats in the auditorium and the proceedings got underway, and the teams in the final showdown announced were from group 1; United States, group 2; India and group 3; Denmark…

My heart sank; we had not made the final three…

In times like these I always think of a saying I heard once which says that professional athletes make extremely good consultants, as they recover from their failures really quickly. Therefore, I decided to enjoy the rest of my time in Karlsruhe, network with some of the interesting people. After all the experience is what you make of it. So I sat back in my chair in the auditorium, relaxed and watched how the three finalists were grilled by the panel of judges, comprised of executives, senior management and professors.

At the awards’ dinner (which was an extremely stylish affair) in the Hotel’s banqueting room, the winner was to be announced. The rest of us all had our own personal take on who ought to win, but as in every competition the judges’ decision is the final say! The dinner was a lovely three course meal with matched wines for each course, an impressive evening. I had a number of good conversations with other participants about internship opportunities and particularly with one of the directors of the Centre of Innovation and Entrepreneurship about a start-up business incubator project.

Finally the time came for the announcement of the winner, 3rd place was taken by the United States, 2nd by India and Denmark won the competition. I was delighted, as I had felt they were the best team too. Everyone was congratulating the three teams and with just dessert still to go, the dinner part of the evening was coming to an end.

The after-party was held in a nearby c lub, of which an entire section was reserved just for us, including complete VIP treatment. It suffices to say that the party was awesome as everyone enjoyed themselves immensely, and a good few friendships were pursued into the early hours of the morning.

Although it has only been a few months since the competition, I am still in contact with some of the good people I met there and have in turn opened up a possible internship opportunity and the other opportunities are still out there waiting for me to find them. All in all the competition was a really positive, value adding and enriching experience which I would highly recommend to everyone.


Funding Options

In these times of financial distress - when people are losing jobs, banks shy away from disbursing loans, and scholarships are scarce – every prospective MBA student will be worried about how to fund his/her studies. So let me list down some of the funding options that one can look at, when he/she is considering EBS for the Full-Time MBA Program:


1. eXebs – EBS Alumni Association – Support for Students -

There are many scholarships to choose from.

a. eXebs Fellowship und Bildungsfonds

b. EBS Alumni Citi Foundation Scholarship

c. Auslandsstipendien

d. eXebs Friedrich J. Schoening International Scholarship supported by DAAD

e. Akademische Feier der EBS Alumni Studienstiftung


2. EBS Full-Time MBA Scholarships

a. Partial EBS Premium Scholarships

b. Full scholarships from 'Péter-Horváth-Foundation'


3. Student Finance

The list is ever growing and EBS is always trying to help its students in funding their studies through various support programs.

Apart from that, there are many institutions in Germany that give out scholarships to Germans and non-Germans alike. Below are couple of them:


1. DAAD Grants & Scholarships

a. (Mostly for US & Canada citizens)

b. For all countries

c.  For students from developing countries

d. Country-specific scholarship, information on the various DAAD Scholarship Programmes (2010/2011).

2.  MAN Studienstiftung

3.  RosaLuxemburg Stiftung


So why don’t you apply for an MBA at EBS?

PS: I am supported by two of the above scholarships – eXebs Friedrich J. Schoening International Scholarship supported by DAAD & MAN Studienstiftung (Partial Tuition Fees waiver)


The Path of a Leader

Leadership. What a fluid term to take apart, actually more of an idea-- an idea of empowering the world around us. Why should we have or why do we require leadership? Good leadership can carry people through the dark and has the potential to lead people to better places. Leadership cannot just be seen as a person in charge of others, but rather it is a calling and a responsibility. A certain trust is put into leaders, and a leader would be wise to not take this trust for granted. Leading implies following, and a leader without followers simply cannot be a leader. Leading is a responsibility which enables others to go to places where otherwise they may not have been able to go.

The path of a leader paves the way for the people who follow, but who paves the path for the leader? A leader sets the path, but how is the leader to know that the direction of the path is set in the right direction? Are time and experience the determining factors for setting good paths, or does it come down to the moral character of the leader? Or could it be that lady luck determines the final destination of a leader’s path. One thing is for certain, the path of a leader is aimed at a destination, whether the destination is reached however is to be seen. The effective leader with eyes wide open will be able to foretell the destination of his path and the poor leader will be in for a surprise.

Hopefully, the leaders of tomorrow will contemplate and be mindful while planning their destinations and then choose the right paths to reach them. A clear path to a bad destination and a bad path to a good destination are not beneficial, and in the end these two things betray trust.


Supply Chain Management at EBS

Towards the end of my first semester in the MBA program, I was asked to choose between two different concentrations – Finance or Supply Chain Management (Operations).

Supply Chain Management at EBS is offered by the Supply Chain Management Institute (SMI). They have a ties with the Indian Institute of Management in Bangalore (IIMB) and run courses focused on India and on emerging markets. SMI works very closely with various corporations.

I chose Supply Chain Management because I come from the manufacturing industry with a Mechanical Engineering background and already had a feel for operations management. I always liked supply chain and logistics networks and looked at it to understand how they were designed and managed. I also used to look at the rail/tram network designs of a city, more so, after coming to Germany. Together with my mathematical bend of mind, liking for numbers and computers, it made perfect sense for me to choose Supply Chain Management. It will also broaden my job choices after I complete my studies at EBS.

As part of my coursework, I am currently taking Advanced Concepts in Supply Chain Management, Financial Supply Chain Management, and Management Information Systems. From a practical standpoint, I am currently doing project work with Danone Waters Deutschland GmbH on supply chain network design with a focus on optimizing costs.

(PS) I do like finance and am currently planning to do my MBA thesis by linking both finance and supply chain management.


EBS Bachelor Blogger: Maike

Hey everyone,

My name is Maike and I started my Bachelor studies in General Management at the European Business School in September 2008. I am currently in my second year at EBS where my focus is on business languages, particularly Spanish. In January 2010 I will be going to Spain for my semester abroad.

I came to the EBS from Hamburg, in the north of Germany, where I was born and where I lived for most of my life. However, the last two years of secondary school I spent in a boarding school in England. I was 16 when I went to the small village of Worksop, located at the northern edge of the Sherwood Forrest. It was an interesting experience living in a different country, meeting new people and being without my parents. Over my two years abroad in England I became a lot more independent, learned very much about myself and got to know another culture. One of the most interesting things about being abroad was being a foreigner and a stranger in a new land, specifically entering a new environment, realising how many differences there were and, by the end of my time there, managing to fit in. The year after I graduated from school I took a gap year where I did some internships and was a leader on an interchange with children from Colombia.

Although I have been at the EBS for nearly one and a half years now, it feels like a lot longer because so many things have happened. EBS expects a high level of academic excellence, which takes up a lot of my time, but there are several other non-curricular activities I enjoy as well. I have attended numerous congresses and was able to help organize some of those events, have had many opportunities to meet and listen to the talks of representatives of a number of companies, have participated in competitions, and have enjoyed spending time with new friends.

This was a first brief insight into my life, and I hope I will be able to give you some interesting information about the EBS in general and my study program, as well as a few cultural insights from my own experiences.

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