NFS presents: The Annual Fashion Show

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Rotterdam hosts countless weekly events and IBCoMagazine just attended the most fashionable one of them: The Annual Fashion Show organised by the New Fashion Society. 

For those of you who are not yet familiar with it, New Fashion Society is a student organisation driven by the idea of combining business and fashion, which was established 5 years ago and which is now known for hosting events like in-house days, fashion workshops and conferences, and the most creative one – the Annual Fashion Show. 

This year’s show featured 5 designers who were lucky enough to present their collections to an audience full of young and excited fashion lovers. Among them Mary Tataw with the collection entitled C. A. W. (Celebrating African Women in Rotterdam); Carmen Luijt with Forbidden – a collection which “empowers one to stand out, be an outside and be the weird one”; Designs by Mariana with the collection Royalty – which was all about African Fashion, empowerment and self-confidence. Another very young but ambitious designer present at the Fashion Show was Julie Evers, a fashion student with her collection Treat and Repeat which is a celebration of sustainable fashion Julie is so passionate about. Last but not least, Rotterdam’s very own slow and fair fashion brand Panter & Schaap also took part in the Annual Fashion Show and presented the audience with a timeless and sustainable collection, “put together on Dutch soil, at fair prices, with normal working conditions”. 

Months and months of preparations and hard work passed in the blink of an eye and before I knew it, all the designers had presented their collections and the models had disappeared from the runaway, only to find them minutes later changed into comfortable clothes with drinks in their hands.

Thank you for having us and for such an amazing evening New Fashion Society. See you next year at yet another astonishing fashion show. 

NFS Fashion Show

What Will Your Future Masters Look Like?

Q-and-As with Erasmus Master students in a post-Bachelor’s world

Guest-writing this blogpost is none other than your resident copy editor and fellow BA-3, Clement. As you might have guessed, one of the Big Things on my schedule is planning ahead: whether it’s for internships, jobs, or Master programs, I’m sure plenty of us soon-to-be (hopefully) graduates – and even the precocious second year – are wondering what the next step in our academic careers might be. So if you’re wondering what it’s like to take on Media & Business, Media, Culture & Society, or Marketing Management Master programs at our university, look no further. Here are a few insights from current (and past) students on the MA lifestyle in the world of “adulthood” as we will soon know it.

Marko Polovina & Laurin Ivetić, Media & Business

Why did you choose this program?

33420242_10160578547925121_8837683080320778240_nBoth Marko and Laurin come from communication backgrounds, having completed their bachelors in universities abroad, before joining EUR. They chose Media & Business after deciding a more specific field within media studies, and after searching for international programs that didn’t seem to offer specific routes, they stumbled upon EUR. When it came to deciding between broader media studies and a business-oriented MA program, they decided to choose the latter: it provided a more applicable background as well as the reputation of a university that spoke beyond it (thanks, Erasmus).

Any favorite courses or facets of your study you enjoyed most?

Their favorite courses ranged from Media Entrepreneurship to Impression Management – both highly applicable, dynamic courses where discussions demanded more from students than a lecture-led classroom. Deepening knowledge on Public Relations was also a big plus: there were insights that led to a feeling of real-world job preparedness that students felt was a strong suit of this program. There is a highlight on ethics and decision-making, a discussion that is always necessary for future experience, whether it be in the corporate setting or in the neck-breaking speed of start-up environments.

Professor ratings… did you have favorites?

Both students refrained from using names (sadly for the rep of some, thankfully for others, perhaps) but a great facet of their learning environment was the emphasis on personal relationships enforced in the classroom. Students are encouraged to discuss their perspectives, and an atmosphere that welcomes – and actively supports – opinionated speakers was a highlight.

33338898_1971743079516275_8400660743384465408_nWhat do you think your future will look like after this program is done?

A lot of the work behind this program involves not only specifying your field of interest by applying it to the final project – the MA thesis – but by pursuing extracurricular activities, which might (and do) foster connections with people outside of the university environment. Again, the emphasis lied in the practical side of media and business studies, something that comes in handy for those who don’t wish to pursue academia in the future. Lastly, the openness to discuss employment was welcome, with experienced professors not only within but also outside of the education world.

Sarah Parsisson, Media, Culture & Society

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Why did you choose this program?

Sarah is currently following the Master Media, Culture and Society and chose it because she thought it was a good combination of two topics she really enjoys studying: sociology and culture. She wants to work in cultural communication, so she thought it was a good way to be critical about all the changes that are happening in our society concerning the media and new technologies.

Any favorite courses or facets of your study you enjoyed most?

The class she enjoyed the most was actually the very first one she attended: Socio-Cultural Change. The subjects tackled were really interesting and the organisation of the course was good for students to develop their critical thinking. There was an emphasis on participation and exchange of ideas, especially since the groups were relatively small, with a maximum of 16 students, providing for a very interesting learning environment.

Professor ratings… did you have favorites?

Overall, the professors were really good. Students really feel equal to them, allowing them to share their personal thoughts about a certain societal issue. Sarah felt that all teachers managed to balance well the combination between letting them self-express and providing guidance into deepening their knowledge regarding various topics.

What do you think your future will look like after this program is done?

Sarah is not sure yet about what her future will look like, but highlights the personal gains she’s made from it, such as becoming more confident in her ideas and oral presentations, and maturing in terms of what her place in society should be. It is up to every student, she highlights, as this program allows them to work in many different areas post-studies – maybe a bit more towards the cultural sector than those corporate/business oriented. Sarah discusses that students can talk about extremely general subjects, highly applicable to everyone: “it’s about society, so it really helps you understanding how society and media work together, and what issues it can trigger.” However, she doesn’t think that this program might help you find what specific career track to follow, as courses are theoretical in nature – the choice of a career path is very individual and independent – this is how Sarah felt about her own.

Differently from Media & Business, Media, Culture & Society is more oriented towards people who would like to stay in the education environment. However, it is also a good way for people who need a year to figure out what they want to do in their life, to have time to think about it while they keep learning, Sarah says.

 

Job Karstens, Marketing Management

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Why did you choose this program?

Job always knew his passion lied with marketing, as the field is very broad and allows you to choose many different directions (such as brand management, product, PR, events, strategy, among others). After finishing his Bachelor of Business Administration at RSM, it was more than logical to continue at the same school. The high level of education and international appeal of an RSM diploma made it easy for him to decide.

Any favorite courses or facets of your study you enjoyed most?

As a student, Job really enjoyed Consumer Behavior, calling it a mix between marketing, psychology and consumer studies that was most appealing to him.

Professor ratings… did you have favorites?

He found all of his professors very passionate, committed and experienced. All lectures were of quite a high level, which was important as the topics are also quite high level. Job especially liked working with Stefano Puntoni, as he was also his thesis coach and always brought a lot of humor and passion to their meetings and lectures together.

What do you think your future will look like after this program is done?

Job graduated in 2013 – after that he received his first job at Nestlé as a junior brand manager (and later brand manager). The broad subjects offered by the program helped him prepare, however in the end, Job highlights that the real experience does come from actually working. He emphasizes how strongly a student’s way of thinking can be influenced by their previous studies, by learning how to look at complex problems and knowing how to properly structure them, looking for a solution and making it work in their favor – something he learned when pursuing this post-graduate study. He highlights it is a very important skill in the hectic life of a marketeer.

Job’s main interest laid in consumer studies and communication, emphasizing the ‘people person’ in him, and as someone who enjoys streamlining communications and using his creativity to convey a message. He now works as a PR & Events Marketing Manager at EVBox, where he’s in charge of a broad spectrum of (brand) communications. Lastly, Job thinks a master’s degree from EUR’s RSM is a very valuable one, opening a lot of doors in terms of career futures; something definitely for those who wish to be career-people.

 

Humans of IBCoM – Zouhair Hammana’s Story

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The turbulent winds on a otherwise sunny day accompanied me as I interviewed Mr. Zouhair Hammana, a PhD candidate and tutorial teacher at EUR. “I’m exploring, in short, how secondary education teachers engage with diversity.” Mr. Hammana is passionate about emancipating margined groups in society, and combining his passion with academia decided to explore this topic within the Netherlands.

“I just really got involved with the IBCoM program this term by teaching [Intercultural Communication and the Research Workshops], and I do think this program is pretty great. It combines a lot of things relevant to those interested in communication media – such as the sociological aspects and the business aspects to it.”

As he’s a fairly new addition to the diverse community within IBCoM and connected to the world of intercultural communication, I asked him about his thoughts on IBCoM’s diversity. “Of course, there’s a lot of people from different places apart from Netherlands… but there is a difference between a diverse community – like a diverse staff or student body – and diverse information and knowledge. The curriculum concentrates a lot on the Western perspective, all the theories studied are from the ‘Western’ word. I don’t mean to say this is wrong, and I completely understand why. We are in a Western environment – in a Western country – and that’s the norm in education. I just hope one day to further have more inclusive information taught as well, not just for IBCoM or EUR, but in all universities as much as possible.”

After diverting to a long conversation about education’s Western bias, I wanted to know more about what he thought could be done to reduce that kind of inherent bias. “I don’t really think it’s feasible to eradicate the bias because that requires inclusivity to be introduced even before schooling, like maybe in kindergarten or before that. I think there’s always a little bias, but what we can do and what is possible to do is to be more open to others’ ideas, while being aware of our own perspectives and frames of references. Being more open just means receiving these different ‘messages’ and making them a constructive dialogue where one perspective doesn’t stand superior than the other, but that these different truths exist alongside each other, and that your perspective is just your truth, not a universal truth.”

Apart from this incredibly academic conversations, Mr. Hammana also mentioned he has a life beyond this. “I love rock climbing and kendo [a Japanese martial art] and I try to practice whenever I can, around two times a week. I also have liked comics since I was a kid. The first comic I remember reading was one of the Spiderman ones – I can’t remember specifically which one – but I bought it second hand during Queen’s Day [now King’s Day]. After that I really got immersed into that world, Marvel and then DC as well. I’m pretty sure my favorite Marvel superhero is Kamala Khan [one of the Captain Marvels] but I also really like Miles Morales [one of the Spidermen]. My favorite DC superhero has to be Batman because he doesn’t have superpowers, but practiced martial arts. Well, I guess you could argue Batman’s superpower is white privilege because that’s the money he uses for his gadgets.” After that turned into a conversation on how I think Batman exists without that privilege (I could go on about Batman, seriously), we came back to the issue of diversity.

“I am glad [diversity] is discussed more now, and that the issues are more noticed, but sometimes I do feel like it becomes more of a marketing tactic than something that really trying to reduce the marginalization of some groups. But it is a step towards the ‘better’.”