We would like to congratulate the students from Imperial College Business School who walked across the stage at Royal Albert Hall on Wednesday 8 May as graduates of the Class of 2019. These graduates are to be lauded for their dedication and many hours of tireless work to reach this momentous occasion.
This year we have 1,610 graduates, of which 283 MBA students, 1,308 MSc students and 19 Doctoral candidates. With 803 male and 807 female graduates, the gender split is almost 50/50.
Graduation gives students an opportunity to come together as a class one more time with their friends, family and loved ones in tow. It’s a joyous occasion, but it is also bittersweet. It marks the end of this chapter of their life, and marks for many the beginning of their career, or a continuance of their journey with a new direction. It’s the beginning of a new era of opportunities and professional and personal development.
In classic London style, the Class of 2019 were greeted by a rainy graduation day as they organised their tickets and gowns. However, no downpour could dampen their spirits and the sun burst out just as students ascended the steps to the Royal Albert Hall.
Taking the stage at Royal Albert Hall
We host the graduation ceremony every year at the Royal Albert Hall, a stunning and historic building around the corner from our South Kensington campus. Getting to walk across the stage at the Hall to collect their graduation certificate is something that students will remember for a lifetime.
The location adds gravity to the occasion, graduating from Imperial College Business School is a huge accomplishment and all students should be immensely proud of this achievement. It is the perfect end of the hard work and dedication that we ask of our students.
President of Imperial College London, Alice Gast, delivered an inspiring speech at the ceremony, “Today is a day to celebrate your accomplishments. Your success at Imperial is a testament to your hard work and your passion for learning. You came to Imperial from places both far and near. You’ve come from different neighbourhoods, different counties, different countries, different continents.”
She said: “You have received your degree at an exciting time…And yet this is also a challenging time where we must continue to work together across disciplines, across cultures, and across borders. Our different upbringings, personal histories and cultures bring new insights and link to new approaches into new discoveries.”
“I urge you to be international in your work and in your lives. Seek opportunities to work with others from different backgrounds. Continue to explore the world.”
After Alice Gast’s speech, the ceremony continued with the presentation of certificates to graduates. God Save the Queen finished the proceedings and students spilled out of Royal Albert Hall, cheering at their new status as Imperial graduates.
One of the graduating students is Candice Gray, who completed the Global Online MBA. She travelled to be at graduation from Trinidad and Tobago, where she studied for her MBA part-time while working full-time. Speaking on graduation she said:
It feels fantastic! I’m very happy to be here with my family. They’ve really sacrificed a lot for me to finish this two-year programme.
The celebrations continued with receptions hosted all over the College for each programme, providing graduates with an opportunity to share a drink with their cohort, family, friends, and faculty from the College.
While it saddens us to bid these students farewell, we’re sure this will not be their last time at the College. Graduation doesn’t mean the end of their time with us but marks their transition from students to alumni of Imperial College Business School.
As Leila Guerra, Associate Dean of Programmes said, “Our graudates leave the School with a big community that is now part of them, they leave the School with friends that will be there for life, and they leave with our recognition and the fact that we’re so immensely proud of them.”
Honouring outstanding students
On graduation eve, the Dean of Imperial College Business School, Francisco Veloso, hosted a reception to honour our brightest, most innovative, engaged and overall outstanding students. Francisco took this opportunity to welcome the graduating students to our alumni community.
Amongst those celebrated were the Dean’s Community Award winners, recipients of the Dean’s List, the Dean’s Student Advisory Board members, programme prize winners, our student ambassadors, SSC representatives and student club leaders.
Students came from near and far to be at the reception, so it was only fitting to hold the event at the beautiful Institute of Directors building at Pall Mall, right l in the heart of London.
Francisco Veloso opened the evening with a speech to greet the distinguished students and impart some wisdom with them. He said, “One very important element of what it means to come and study and be with us at Imperial College Business School is to think about you how you can be an agent of change – in your company, in your non-profit, in your family or whatever environment you are now contributing – to think about, with the new tools, with the new understanding and experiences that you gained, how you are going to be that agent of change.”
The graduands spent the rest of the evening catching up with their classmates, lecturers and members of the Programmes teams who supported them through their studies. They also got the chance to forge new connections on both a professional and personal level with students from other programmes.
Thank you to the Class of 2019
We know that this graduating class will go achieve greatness in their respective fields, but will also be the future leaders of global society, leading with integrity. We ensure that students are equipped with the toolkit to excel in our increasingly technology-driven world.
We can’t wait to follow the endeavours of the graduating class, our newest alumni of Imperial College Business School.