IESE Professor Antonio Argandoña Speaks at Business Administration Graduation Ceremony
Dr. Antonio Argandoña, who is a professor at IESE and the holder of the 'la Caixa' chair of Corporate Social Responsibility and Corporate Governance, gave a talk at the graduation ceremony for students from the Bachelor's Degree programme in Business Administration and the Master's Degree programme in Business Administration and Production Systems. The ceremony took place in the UIC's main lecture hall on Friday, 30 May 2014.
The event was presided over by Dr. Frederic Marimon, who is the UIC’s Vice Rector for Research and a lecturer at the Faculty of Economic and Social Sciences. He was joined by Dr. Toni Mora, the Faculty Dean.
Dr. Mora opened the event by congratulating and thanking the graduating students, from whom he claimed the Faculty’s teaching staff had also learned a great deal, and encouraged them to enjoy the forthcoming new stage in their lives. “Now it’s time for you to be independent. I have just one word of advice for you: effort”, he remarked.
Dr. Argandoña then spoke about the role of modern companies and defended them against the criticism they have received in recent years. “They create wealth and employment, they train and develop their employees, they mobilize human resources, they innovate, they’re flexible, they adapt and they’re capable of regenerating themselves in difficult circumstances”, he said, in reference to the new corporate model. “They’re also key to the progress and stability of society”, he added.
Dr. Argandoña went on to tell the students that their time at the UIC had prepared them for a complex, globalized employment market; and specifically, that the University had given them a more humanistic approach to business. “This will be of great use to you in a society that talks a lot about people, but barely listens to them and respects them even less”, he affirmed. “The work of an economist brings him or her into daily contact with the complexity of human relationships”, he stated, explaining why the human aspect of the students’ education is of such great importance.
He then specified five values which, in his opinion, are very necessary for the professional development of any businessman or economist: humility, critical thinking, optimism, gratitude and a spirit of service. “You can always depend on your old teachers. Education is a lifelong activity”, he told the students.
After Dr. Argandoña’s address, the student representatives from the undergraduate and Master’s programmes gave speeches about their own experiences at the UIC. Finally, Dr. Marimon congratulated the students and their families once again, and the ceremony ended with a rendition of the traditional graduation song Gaudeamus Igitur.