"It's been a challenge, but worth it in the end"

On 8th June, Constantin Gully-Valdenaire and Léa Claude will add another degree to their growing list of impressive qualifications. They are part of a group of French students who are the first to complete a new double degree programme at Jönköping International Business School.

Double degree graduates Léa Claude and Constantin Gully-Valdenaire

The students are just two out of a group of ten students from Kedge Business School in Bordeaux. They have spent a year and a half at Jönköping International Business School, studying for a Bachelor of Science with a major in Business Administration. This is in addition to a master’s degree they will get from the European Business Programme back home in France.

For Léa Claude, Jönköping International Business School was her first choice of university for her dual degree.

“The Business Administration programme was really interesting to me, and it aligned well with what I was doing at Kedge. There were classes on purchasing and sales that I couldn’t find at any other of Kedge’s partner universities. I was also really curious about Sweden. I wanted to experience what it was like to live in a country that ranks so highly when it comes to happiness and wellbeing, where industry is successful and society is so stable.”

However, the students experienced a huge difference in the learning approach between Kedge Business School and Jönköping International Business School.

“At Kedge, the classes are mandatory and there are more of them in a week. It’s a bit like being at school. At Jönköping International Business School, you have more free time, but you have to grow up a bit, take more responsibility for your study time,” says Constantin Gully-Valdenaire.

Léa Claude agrees, “There’s more of a university vibe here, and you are given time to really understand your subject. But you are also thrown in the deep end and need to deal with assignments by yourself. It’s also more informal here; in France, our teachers are stricter and expect more discipline.”

For these students, the journey is a long one and not for the faint-hearted. Over the past four years, they’ve studied and worked in four different countries. A year and a half of that has been in Sweden, spending their fourth, fifth and eight semesters at Jönköping International Business School.

“You spend a lot of your time moving to different countries,” says Constantin Gully-Valdenaire, who, as well as living in Jönköping, has worked as an intern in companies in Spain and Australia. “Sometimes you just want to go home and be in one place for a while. But I keep going because I know in the end, it will be great to have these qualifications.”

Léa Claude agrees, “Each experience has been a challenge, but I like that. For my next internship I’m off to BIMTECH (Birla Institute of Management Technology) in New Delhi. India will be a challenging country to adapt to, but I think that being able to live in different places all over the world is attractive to future employers.”

Students on the International Management programme at Jönköping International Business School are also taking part in the dual degree programme and are currently on exchange at Kedge Business School where they will graduate with a Bachelor of Commerce degree in 2019.