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In a snowy but electric atmosphere, more than 200 students from Bachelor, Master and Postgraduate programs received their diploma at Les Roches International School of Hotel Management on Friday, December 3, 2010.
“I want to thank you, Les Roches, for all the doors you are opening for us”, said a Russian valedictorian, speaking for her class and exemplifying the ambience on graduation day. More than 200 students, from almost 100 different nationalities, were all dressed up with the graduate’s suit and hat, waiting for the last step to the future. They were individually called by their program manager to receive their diploma and congratulations from the CEO Arie van der Spek together with Colin Small, Dean of undergraduates, or Jeremy Hutchinson, Director of Academic Affairs. Students in tears were waving to their excited and emotional parents who were queuing to take a picture of their prodigious children. It was definitely a moving afternoon in the famous Swiss hospitality management school.
“The world is your oyster”, says keynote speaker Mr. Simon. P. Casson, General Manager of Four Season Hotel in Doha Qatar. This hospitality professional was thrilled to be back after 10 years of recruiting over 1’000 Les Roches students for the Four Seasons luxury hotel chain. Simon Casson delivered a highly motivational speech directed to students and inspired every person present at Les Roches. “Imagine yourself 20 years from now, invited to speak like me at your former school graduation ceremony. What will you have accomplished, what will you speak of, what words of wisdom, forged from your own experiences, will you share with generation Z who are yet to be born?”. At the end of his speech full of advice for the future professional life of the graduates, he closed with this quote from the famous American writer Mark Twain: “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”
The ceremony was followed by a very nice cocktail reception and buffet prepared by younger students, probably dreaming of their own graduation day.