My name is Oleh Zelenyak. I am from Uzhhorod, Ukraine. I am 20 years old and I am taking the International Fresh Business Management Bachelor’s programme at the Fontys campus in Venlo, the Netherlands. Below you will find some of the experiences I gained during my first year at the university.
As a usual school graduate, I assumed that higher education is what I need, but not necessarily what I want. However, when looking for opportunities I found an article about Fontys University of Applied Sciences which appeared to be not just a “typical education institution”. Since then, a new chapter of my life has started.
Fontys offers a range of English-taught Bachelor’s programmes in Business, Arts, Logistics, Agriculture, Technology, and Software Engineering. All of these are 4 years long. At Fontys, they believe that you prepare best for the business world by putting theory immediately into practice. That’s why their programmes include a lot of practical training like workshops, projects, presentations, and internships.
Why International Fresh Business Management?
After being accepted to Fontys, a new question arose: “What should I study?” From the beginning, I liked Marketing and I wanted to study in this sphere. But then I heard of a course named “International Fresh Business Management”. This course is a combination of Agriculture, which is the main profitable industry for the Netherlands, Marketing, and Logistics. Choosing this study programme is one of the best decisions I have ever made!
At first sight, my choice of IFBM can be seen as a coincidence, but I really want to emphasize that I have not regretted making this choice even for one single moment. Agriculture, Marketing, and Logistics is a combination that leads to enormous opportunities for my future. Besides that, the first year up until now has been an irreplaceable experience and, so far, has been the best time of my life. Prior to studying I had doubts whether or not I had enough knowledge, but these doubts had vanished after just a few weeks in Venlo.
What does studying at Fontys look like?
A friendly atmosphere, motivational tasks, very good lecturers, and a professional attitude — all of these fill the life of students at Fontys in order to make them into future experts. IFBM consists of ten major subjects which are primarily connected to the Business of Agriculture and include Economics, Statistics, Marketing, Management, and Logistics.
During the study course, you have a high number of projects for and meetings with different companies. For example, one of my Projects was for the famous German company “Ritter Sport”. The assignment was to create two new special varieties of chocolate bars. Divided into groups, we had to choose ingredients, suppliers, build a relationship and chains of distribution, and come up with promotional campaigns in order to attract customers. What could be better than Projects like this! At the end, the group presents the final product as a proposal and concept which furthermore can be implemented by “Ritter Sport”. Can you imagine? Our products could possibly be on the market! And we had 4 such projects in the first year.
IFBM provides you with many opportunities to create your own network, already from the first year onwards. If you are simply looking for lectures, reading material, and doing homework, then IFBM is not what you are looking for. The projects will teach you how to think outside the box. Moreover, you will get out of your comfort zone and learn how to deal with real obstacles in real companies. The course has great value to prepare you for the business world after graduation. You can already find that value in the first year (like I am finding out right now).
What do students do after classes?
Opportunities at Fontys aren’t limited by studying. Fontys is always keen to meet new, active, and inspired students who have cool ideas. Plenty of events are organized annually in which everyone can participate. People can even help with the organization of the event or support during it. Next to being a first-year IFBM student, I am also a part of the Promo Team of Fontys and a student ambassador of IFBM for the Marketing and Communication department. Besides that, I am a member of the Fontys Soccer Team (Venlo has its own Student Sport Team where students can participate in many sport activities for a reduced fee). Next to your studies, a lot of things are happening at Fontys!
See you in the Netherlands!
Find more information about Fontys
Read more about Fontys programmes and how to apply on the university’s website.
Follow the Fontys Venlo Youtube channel to get an overall impression about studying at the university.
Contact Fontys representative, Linda Bouwman, via email (L.firstname.lastname@example.org) with any questions you may have.