IEU Experience


Created for highly driven Bachelor students, the IE University Honours Program is an environment that fosters a culture of integrity, distinction, and prestige.

Students must meet rigorous academic standards to be a member and participate in inclusive events with some of the biggest public and business names in the world, including Amazon, The United Nations, Oliver Wyman, and Cabify.

Here, Florian Schambergen, a fourth-year student of the Dual Degree in Business Administration and Laws, shares his thoughts and feelings about the Honours Program at IE University—detailing the benefits of being a member while giving insights to potential new members of the program.

Tell us about yourself

My name is Florian Schambergen and I am currently in my fourth year of the Dual Degree in Business Administration and Laws at the Madrid campus. I’m half German and half Dutch but grew up in Germany close to Düsseldorf. I recently finished my exchange semester at the National University of Singapore.

What is the Honours Program?

The IE University Honours Program is an initiative that aims to recognize consistently exceptional performance by students across various degrees. It falls in line with the university’s core values of integrity, distinction, and prestige. As the name suggests, students that form part of this program hold honorable virtues.

It also emphasizes IE University’s urge to give something back to such bright minds. The program is coupled with workshops and unique opportunities to enhance the participants’ competencies and skills while broadening their professional network. The program harnesses cultural and cognitive diversity as the key driver of its success, creating a vibrant environment that leads all participants to reach their full potential.

What activities have you done so far and which one have you liked the most?

Throughout the year, the program offered multiple unique networking events with high-end executives in leading firms. Here, students had the possibility to gain deeper insights about the corporate and legal world while also securing internship opportunities.

Moreover, undertaking the intensive courses in February, students get to participate in tailored workshops tackling specific competencies needed for future success in the digital world. The second module developed one crucial ability for leadership—constructing your personal public narrative. Public narrative can be described as the story that represents why you care about a particular issue, what your values are and why it is you who should be the voice for such an issue.

This narrative builds on personal experiences and inspiration for courageous action, ultimately mobilizing communities and friends, to take urgent action and follow your lead. I enjoyed this workshop—organized by Borja Santos, Executive Director of Global & Public Affairs— particularly as it presented me with a new way of experiencing leadership. This workshop’s interactive approach brought new people closer together, creating an even safer environment in which views on extremely personal experiences could be shared.

What is the key to academic success?

In my opinion, academic success is the culmination of various factors. At the core, certain values need to be practiced in everything one does. For example, by combining ambition and determination with self-awareness, self-control, self-confidence, and integrity, I am convinced anything is possible. By having the right mindset and letting yourself envision your future while staying true to yourself by not being affected by other people’s opinions, potential is unlimited.

Moreover, I believe in letting yourself be inspired by people you admire and being pushed by friends and family to be the best version of yourself. This will further enhance your success.

Why would you recommend students try to become part of this program?

Besides the enhanced self-development and outstanding networking opportunities that come with this program, I deeply believe that it allows students get one step closer to grasping their purpose and learning what personal success really means. It is a worthy reward for consistency and excellence that any student ought to strive for. It also gives students the feeling of forming part of something bigger.

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How do you feel about the Honours Program and what do you think about it?

I am tremendously proud to be part of the first cohort of this program and thankful to have been presented the opportunity to contribute to its design. While completing the modules, I seek to further enhance my leadership skills while I gain new thought-provoking concepts that I can apply in my professional career. I have learned how to establish my public narrative and seek to perfect it over the coming years, enabling me to organize communities I wish to lead.

Beyond recognizing prestige, excellence and integrity, the 2020 IE University Honours Program prospers by connecting cognitive diversity and individual excellence, unleashing unlimited potential for success, personal development and deep relationships.