"The ESB Spirit is 100 per cent reliable"

Internships, mentoring, yoga – ESB Reutlingen Alumni e.V. tackles the corona pandemic with ”Alumni Spirit Support“.

Worldwide ESB alumni communities, events for students on campus and additional formats such as AlumniLearnings – personal contacts and networking between the ESB generations are the mainstay of ESB Reutlingen Alumni e.V. Due to the coronavirus, some of the association’s services are currently not available or not available in the same form. At the same time, many ESB students and graduates are affected by short-time work, home office and other effects of the pandemic. The alumni network of ESB Business School reacted promptly and launched  “Alumni Spirit Support“  at the beginning of March. Vice President Franziska Ibele (IB 2015) talks about the campaign:

Franziska, what exactly lies behind ”Alumni Spirit Support“?

In times like these, we see ourselves as having a special responsibility as a strong and supportive network for our alumni. We want to act and help with targeted initiatives and thus also send a signal of solidarity. This is why we have set up Alumni Spirit Support.  We would like to provide our members with alternative options and opportunities to network with each other and also to benefit from the network in the present situation.

The response so far has been great from all sides and shows once again the strength of the ESB alumni network and how important it is that we can rely 100 per cent on the cohesion and ultimately the ESB Spirit.

The first action within the framework of  Alumni Spirit Support was to arrange internships for students. How was the feedback?

The campaign was extremely well received by both the alumni network and the students. More than 150 students as well as nearly 20 companies, who continue to take on employees and interns, responded.  Many companies are still in the selection process but we have already received feedback from the first students and companies regarding successful placements. One start-up company even took on three interns within one week.

What other measures are currently underway?

We are currently running our Yoga & Mindfulness initiative in which our alumna Pia Baur (IPBS 2011) gives a one-hour digital Yoga & Mindfulness training once a week. She is a systemic personal and business coach, certified meditation and yoga teacher and supports both private clients and companies with her holistic approach.  Last week we had more than 50 participants at the start, including ESB professors. Together we practised sun salutations with Pia on our terraces and balconies, in living rooms and Co.

And what is planned for the future?

After the positive response to the first online formats such as the yoga training or the Alternative Careers Forum, we are currently considering which face-to-face alumni events we can hold online on a transitional basis. In particular, we are thinking about how our members can also exchange information digitally with relevant content and networking character.

Our mentoring programmes are another component. Especially in these times, a mentor with several years of professional experience can be an incredibly valuable sparring partner. On the one hand, we are expanding the Alumni4Students programme for further courses of study, but we are also currently working flat out on the conception of a professional mentoring programme for young professional alumni who will receive a mentor who has been  in the profession for at least ten years.  Those who are interested are welcome to take part in this small survey and will then be included directly in the first pilot. In addition, we are also in regular contact with ESB Business School, where we can provide students but also faculty with targeted support with the reach of our network.  

How can ESB graduates help the alumni community and Alumni Spirit Support at the moment?

Anyone, whether a member of ESB Reutlingen Alumni or not, can currently contribute to our network. If you are still hiring staff, have an interesting topic you would like to talk about, want to become active as a mentor or have further ideas for mutual support in the network, please contact us by e-mail. Let’s stick together and live the ESB Spirit that has connected us since the beginning of our studies and carried us so far.