So what’s the big deal about getting international?

“You are saying you wanna make SSE student body more international? Why is that an improvement? Seems like being international has become somewhat overrated…”

I heard that question the other day while having my lunch in Rotunda (a room in SSE basement, with 10 microwaves, a stage, a bar, and plenty of space for anything – from parties to election debates). So I was eating my microwaved stuff, while listening in parallel to some pretty entertaining debates between candidates running for Student Association positions. The discussion was lively, candidates – frustrated enough to put a smile on my face, and the chicken fillet tasted good. Decent food and a good show: what else does one need for lunch?

But that lunch had consequences. The question stuck in the back of my mind: Why is international good? I’ve taken it for granted for too long… General phrases about diverse perspectives, different backgrounds and complementary skills no longer seemed convincing. After all, those could be found within one nationality, too…

Now, if a business school has taught me anything, it taught me to think business. So here’s one BIG reason why international talent is paramount for business success: companies might be born global, but people are not! People’s natural resistance to anything unfamiliar (including those strange funny looking foreign partners) slows down the business. Therefore, employing people who already overcame that resistance is a great competitive advantage.

Still seems to abstract to you? Alright, then a small argument will do: going international is actually a lot of fun. Just try it out and see for yourself! By the way, here are some options how you can go international right from SSE:

…CEMS, or how to hang out with top managers during your international management studies?(4 continents, 29 schools, 60+ corporate partners)

…Wallenberg Programme, or how to get into Washington DC and study politics in Georgetown?

…Exchange Programme, or the only place you can’t go is Antarctica… But those US MBA Schools are just irresistible.

…Double Degrees, or go warm up in Milano, if Stockholm seems too cold for you. (Yeah, you can settle for Paris, too=)

…Wanna plant bananas to feed children in Africa? There’s a way to get that funded, too! (well, bananas are bad example, ‘cause it’s gotta be an innovative project carried out abroad, if you are after GELS Scholarship)

P.S. In case you’re wondering about the cover photo: it’s just my story of going international: Stockholm to the left, Lviv (my hometown) in the middle, and a lot of unexplored options in the bottom right corner. And about the collage: that’s what happens when one has an unexpected urge for creativity sometime between option pricing and corporate finance cases…


Written by Marta

05 Dec 2014