A global experience shaped for the individual

@Alejandra Acedo

Students’ individuality celebrated at IE University.

IE University is known for being international and highly diverse. Isabel Wu, alumni of IE University, explains how that diversity emphasizes the individual, creating a culture of customized degrees, open-mindedness, innovation, and constant learning at IE University. Far from feeling lost in a sea of students, Isabel was made to feel welcome in a new country allowing for a sense of connection and community that enhanced her learning experience both during and after her time at IE University.

Why did you chose IE University?

Like many of us, I knew about IE University because of IE Business School’s reputation. After getting to know more about the newly-founded university (back then), I was impressed by the truly international environment IE University creates for all students, as well as the personal attention offered throughout the application process and the university’s customized degree programs. On top of all of that, being able to live in a fairytale city like Segovia and the historic campus made IE University an obvious choice for someone like me who loves exploring new cultures.

What didn’t you expect but liked when you got to IE University?

The university staff, especially those who work at Student Services, really went the extra mile to help us feel settled. Some fellow students and I arrived without knowing any Spanish, but luckily, we had help from the Student Services office to open bank accounts and look for accommodation. We knew we could always count on them in times of need, which made the transition in the first few months much smoother and less scary.

What is it like to study with a diverse group of students?

Studying with such a diverse group is the most rewarding part of this experience. You can’t find the same level of diversity at other universities. We had the chance to interact with fellow students from literally every continent, from developed and developing countries, and with different religions and backgrounds. International students are the majority on campus. We were all respectful of each other and kept an open mind about differences. We shared opinions and perspectives shaped by our unique backgrounds during discussions in the classroom, and after class, we exchanged fun life stories and enjoyed food from different parts of the world with each other. IE University has connected and enriched our worlds.

How did IE University help you get your current job?

My first job after graduation was actually with IE University, as part of the International Development team in South East Asia. This experience helped me gain an even better understanding of the values and uniqueness of IE University as an institution. It made me very proud that at recruiting events, IE University was one of the schools that students always remembered after they left. Prospective students were inspired by our innovative ways of doing things and program design. Now, I am working as a project manager with L’Oreal’s North Asia APAC team. I have to admit that although the new industry was a big change, I was prepared with the solid business foundation and all of the practical professional skills I learned while at IE University. I was able to grasp complex business processes in a short amount of time, which made me appreciate the hands-on teaching methods used at IE University even more.

What are your long-term career objectives?

I want to learn as much as possible and be exposed to different environments to better prepare myself for a managerial role at an international organization.

Is there any advice you would like to give to Chinese students who are thinking of studying at IE University?

Be bold, be confident, and be observant. You will be surprised by your abilities every time you overcome an obstacle. Don’t be scared of failing – it’s better to fail than to regret not having tried.