Congratulations to all the graduates of the Barcelona GSE's eighth edition of master's programs! Here's a look at the highlights from the graduation ceremony on July 7, 2015 at AXA Auditorium.
Video: Graduation Day Recap
Family, friends, professors, and staff filled the AXA Auditorium in central Barcelona to celebrate the graduation of the eighth cohort of Barcelona GSE master's students. Over 200 students in seven programs graduated in a ceremony featuring invited speaker Antoni Brufau, CEO of Repsol.
"Because of your top-drawer profiles and accomplishments to date, and because you have graduated from such a prestigious institution, you represent the pinnacle of academic excellence," said Mr. Brufau, whose multinational has supported master's students with scholarship funding for several years. "I have learned to recognize talent on first glance, and I can tell you that there is a lot on display before me now. I know that many leaders of tomorrow will walk away from these classrooms today and this is both a major challenge and a huge responsibility," Mr. Brufau told the graduates.
Video: Antoni Brufau, CEO of Repsol
Video: Alumni speaker Sarah Zoi '14
Macroeconomic Policy and Financial Markets alum Sarah Zoi '14 spoke to the new graduates about choices and how the master's degree gave her the privilege of being able to choose her own future – in fact, she graduated with three choices: to go home to Italy and join one of Europe's biggest asset management firms as a macro-analyst; to join an important think-tank in Brussels, or to accept a scholarship to start a PhD program in a well-known Italian university. (She ultimately chose the first option and is currently a Macroeconomic Analyst with Generali Investments Europe in Trieste.)
"If on one side I was enthusiastic and I felt completely awarded for all my efforts, on the other side I soon realized that what I was facing was in fact one of the most difficult problems of constrained maximization I had ever tried to solve," Ms. Zoi said. "I hope all the professors sitting her today will forgive me, but unfortunately there are decision problems that cannot be solved maximizing a Lagrangian."
Video: Student speaker Benjamin Anderson '15
Economics of Public Policy grad Benjamin Anderson '15 offered a student's perspective on the intense year in Barcelona and the academic, social, and cultural experiences he and fellow students shared during master's program.
"At one time or another, we have all benefitted from the mentorship of our peers, even if, at first, we were shocked and intimidated by the talents of our fellow classmates," Mr. Anderson said. "In the future, when we need someone to lean on for a moment of support, we will have a friend we can call on within the circle of Barcelona GSE. We’ve built relationships that will last for a lifetime."
He also encouraged the entire Class of 2015 to protect the investment they've all made this year and to build on it in the years ahead.
"As economists, we try to model reality. But the most important model we’ll ever construct is that of who we choose to be and what we desire to become. We owe it to ourselves to keep repaying the sacrifices we´ve made this year by building upon them. Make a promise to yourself today that you will use these experiences as fuel and motivation to power your dreams," Mr. Anderson said.
New graduates received a copy of the Alumni Outlook magazine, published this month and now available for download!
The magazine includes interviews and updates from the alumni community, photos of the Class of 2015, and more!