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Geneva's greatest export

mardi, 28 juin 2016   (2 Comments)
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At three splendid graduation ceremonies over the past month, Ecolint said goodbye to 370 students across our campuses. We hope it's not so much au revoir, as à bientôt, for even as the graduates scatter to the four corners of the planet, they become members of our alumni community as well as, as per one of the graduation speeches, Geneva's greatest export.

In a thoughtful and entertaining speech to his classmates at LGB, graduate Leo Hotham picked up the theme, often discussed by alumni, of what it means to be "international". He and his classmates, he said, thanks to their education at Ecolint, don't categorize themselves by nationality.

"...thinking from the point of view of a citizen of the world rather than one of a particular country allows us to abandon nationalist motives and find solutions to help everyone. [...] And the school’s ideals ring truer every time I contemplate the world in which we live. This education has given us a viewpoint largely unclouded by nationalism. This is the main gift we have received here, I like to think, not only from the school itself but from each other."


Leo Hotham (LGB '16)
Leo Hotham (LGB '16) speaking at the LGB Graduation Ceremony on Friday 17 June 2016

His closing remarks, were particularly well received:

"Many would argue that Geneva’s greatest export is luxury goods, or even chocolate. But I’d say without a doubt that international students are Geneva’s greatest export. A new generation of internationally-minded, progressive millennials that have been endowed with a mission to solve the problems of world.

And that, my brothers and sisters, is what we’re going to do. Let’s go make that list of esteemed LGB alumni a lot more impressive!

The complete text of Leo Hotham's speech can be found here.

Inspirational speakers

Leo Hotham was just one of many impressive speakers across the three graduation ceremonies. His fellow graduate Noemie Selvi's warm and humorous speech was also greatly appreciated at LGB as, of course, were the words of invited guest Jean Alesi, the celebrated Formula 1 driver.

At La Châtaigneraie the invited guest came, for a change, from within the ranks of staff. Retiring teacher Pat McKinzie delivered an inspiring speech that can be read in full on our AlumBlog. The student speakers at La Chât were Esha Indani, Karl Fritz Scheufele and Alistair MacDiarmid.

At Campus des Nations the graduates were addressed by Lebanese explorer and sportsman Maxime Chaya. He spoke about how everyone should aim to conquer their own personal Everest in life. Speaking on behalf of the graduates at Nations were Isabel Hahn and Andrus Hatem.

Left, Jean Alesi speaking at the 2016 LGB Graduation Ceremony; right, Maxime Chaya at the Campus des Nations 2016 Graduation Ceremony.

Alumni Award

As usual, among the various awards presented during the ceremonies was Le Prix des Anciens, an award sponsored by the Alumni Association. The certificates (along with a voucher for Payot bookstore) are presented annually to graduates who are deemed to have demonstrated an exceptional commitment to integration, a remarkable spirit of solidarity and a sense of camaraderie.

At LGB the Alumni Award was presented by the chair of the Alumni Association Gisela Vargas (LGB '89), while at Campus des Nations her fellow Central Committee member Theo Gill (LGB '69) did the honours.

Our congratulations to the recipients of the Alumni Award 2016:

  • William Fryling (Campus des Nations) 
  • Peter Churchill (La Châtaigneraie)
  • Emilie Stibolt (La Châtaigneraie)
  • Solange Favre (La Grande Boissière)
  • William Verboon (La Grande Boissière)

William Verboon (LGB '16) receiving the Alumni Award from Gisela Vargas (LGB '89), chair of the Alumni Association.

Theo Gill (LGB '69), member of the Alumni Association Central Committee, presenting the Alumni Award to William Fryling (Nations '16).

Welcoming our new alumni

Members of the Class of 2016 have already begun registering on the Ecolint Alumni Web Community. The whole cohort will be invited to do so later this summer, when we will also announce a series of Young Alumni Meetups in some of the most popular university destinations. We hope that alumni of all ages will attend these events and help to welcome our newest alumni to the city and to the community.


> Click here to access photographs from this year's and past graduation ceremonies (sign-in required)



Dalip K. Daswani says...
Posted samedi, 2 juillet 2016
The anglo-american and the eurocentric dominance continues, at least with respect to the definition of “internationalism”. It would be interesting to encounter the new breed of “internationalists” graduating from Ecolint where schooling back in the 60s-70s was certainly delectable, like Swiss “chocolate”, and undoubtedly a privileged luxury – one far up the totem pole of "luxury goods". Surely neither are integral components of any sustainable mission towards solving "millennial goals" or the problems of a hegemonic, "globalist" world which has entered a new age – of Empire!
Nikolaus Weimann says...
Posted jeudi, 30 juin 2016
while international mindetness is now strongly coming up in the Alumni article in the past there was still the reality of long established anglo-saxon dominance in the International school as countries like the USA and Britain where strongly over- represented both among students and teachers. That had in my days somewhat restricted international mindedness as anglo-saxon cultural background clearly dominated over other cultures. I do however wonder whether the suppression of separate English side and French side branches has meanwhile lead to a more international orientation as compared to the past or whether some cultures still dominate over others.

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