Kingston/RANEPA Alumni Reunion at the Residence of the British Ambassador in Moscow
On October 4, the British Ambassador hosted the annual Graduation Ceremony for participants of the Kingston/RANEPA International MBA, EMBA and IHRM programs at his Residence in Moscow.
This year, more than 70 graduates completed the programs, breaking Kingston University’s absolute record in the number of certificates with honors – more than 40%. Another record is the number of thesis projects that were excellently defended – over 50%. Anton Korolyov earned a record score – 95 points out of 100 – for a highly relevant graduation project, “The impact of Existing Business Models on the Development of the Data Center Operation Market in Russia and the CIS.”
The graduates were awarded their diplomas by the Rector of the Presidential Academy, Professor Vladimir Mau, and Vice-Chancellor of Kingston University, Professor Jill Schofield.
The ceremony took place in a magnificent room, which was made fully available to the graduates for the night. In his opening remarks, Ambassador of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II to Russia Dr. Laurie Bristow said he was very pleased that RANEPA and Kingston University, their students and graduates have been serving a noble cause – the development of relations and cooperation between Russia and the UK. Mr. Ambassador also noted that he never got an MBA degree, although he has always wanted to and has always treated the holders of advanced degrees with great reverence. Unfortunately, his leadership at the time did not see a direct correlation between the study of strategy and his diplomatic career.
The presentation by Rector of the Presidential Academy, Doctor honoris causa of Kingston University, Professor Vladimir Mau, added solemnity and festivity to the atmosphere. He said it was for a reason that this ceremony takes place in a beautiful mansion overlooking the Kremlin, which definitely imposes obligations on the graduates. This starting point will remain forever in their memories as a catalyst for their careers and success in life. For many years, the international programs of Kingston University and the Academy have remained the best in Russia, the rector noted as he conveyed greetings from one of the most prominent graduates of the program – Alexei Komissarov, CEO of Russia – Land of Opportunity autonomous non-profit organization (ANO), also an honorary doctor of Kingston University.
Kristina Tikhonova, President of Microsoft Russia, welcomed the participants and guests of the ceremony as a prominent Kingston/RANEPA EMBA graduate. She recalled the wonderful years spent on the program and emphasized that it was her EMBA training that accelerated her career growth. Immediately after the program ended, she was hired as CEO of Nokia Siemens in Russia, and it was on the program that she made great friends with whom she is still in touch.
The new graduates’ response and commencement speeches generated an unforgettable mood and a storm of emotions as they thanked the Ambassador for generously opening the doors of his house for them, the RANEPA Rector for the excellent conditions for studying in a most beautiful place in Moscow –Prechistenskaya Embankment, and the Vice Chancellor of Kingston University for the unique teachers who shared not only the most relevant knowledge, technologies and international professional experience, but also their life and cultural values.
Arina Slynko, EMBA graduate:
“Thanks to the Kingston/RANEPA EMBA program, it became completely clear to me that knowledge itself is nothing unless you do something with it. Action is the only way for self-realization and happiness. The EMBA program is not about how to launch a process, but about how to achieve progress, how to be a leader of change, how to learn to lead and manage trends.
Now I am sure that it is never too late to change your attitudes and approaches to work. And I would like all graduates to take advantage of this powerful new impulse and direct it towards the achievement of common good. As Mark Zuckerberg said in his famous commencement address at Harvard, “now it's our turn to do great things.”
Yelena Yugova, IHRM graduate:
“Honestly, it is a much-anticipated moment. Every time one of us felt like giving up on the way to it, we encouraged each other imagining our graduation party. Of course, most IHRM students are women, which might explain this kind of motivation.
Seriously, we promised ourselves to graduate together as one team, and we strongly supported each other to achieve this goal. In all modesty, we are a wonderful group, and now we are true friends, even outside of school – we meet, travel, and visit each other in different countries.”
Yury Merenkov, MBA graduate:
“I would like to say that, oddly enough, success is a powerful demotivator. When one achieves success, they feel disappointed rather than happy. We get the greatest boost of energy not from achieving a goal, but from approaching it. When we achieve success, we need to build a new vision, make plans, hopes and dreams to be able to move on. This MBA program will help us with new achievements.”