On Saturday, 13th October, the Berlin International University of Applied Sciences honored approximately 40 graduates of the academic year 2018/19 in the programs of Design as well as in Business Administration.
The vice chairman of BAU Global Coskun Ince and architecture critic/author Dipl.-Ing. Katrin Voermanek as well as friends and family members of our graduates were present at the graduation.
The ceremony started with a speech by our President Prof. Dr. Dr. hc mult. Hans-Dieter Klingemann, followed by contributions of some guests as well as students - among them one of our graduates Ines Benedikt - and continued with the announcements of the best students and best bachelor thesis of the year. Afterwards the diplomas were handed over and the ceremony ended with the tradition of throwing the caps in the air. We wish all our graduates good luck and all the best for their future!
Graduates of Business Administration
Graduates of Graphic Design & Visual Communication
Graduates of Product Design
Graduates of Interior Design
The video of our graduation ceremony
The interview we had with Moataz Ghannam - the first student with a refugee status who has graduated at BI
Below you can read the commencement speech given by Ines Benedikt.
Professors, teachers and staff members of Berlin International, honoured guests, parents and siblings, family and friends, and especially to all my fellow Berlin International students, welcome, to the celebration of the graduating class of 2018. When I first thought about studying Interior Design, I was living in the US and had pretty comfortable life. Nevertheless, I dreamed to work in a field I am passionate about. So I researched my opportunities and found a link on the internet, hidden at the very bottom of my computer screen which said BAU International Berlin. My initial thought was, cool, Berlin, it is international, interesting, and it has something to do with building. Ok lets apply. In the end I got accepted, moved back to Germany and went to the campus on the first day of the first semester. I arrived at, what looked like an office building with a Turkish name written on the facade. The interior was dominated by a dark, red carpet, which gave more the impression of a law firm than a school. My first thought was, what did I get myself into? Then 3 years later, I was asked if I wanted to give todays commencement speech, I initially said yes. But by the time I came home, and thought about it, I realized, that once again, what did I get myself into? So today I am standing here looking back and reflecting, in only 10 minutes, on what has turned out to have been 3 great years at Berlin International.
Be #HONEST A wise man once said that gratitude never decreases by being shared. Today I would like to share and express my honest gratitude, my deep respect and my appreciation, to all the professors, teachers, mentors and staff members of Berlin International, for the support, the effort, the dedication, the companionship and all the valuable lessons you have taught us. Moreover I would like to devote my biggest gratitude to all my fellow students, who definitely inspired me along the way, who also criticised and challenged me, whom I learned a great amount from, and whom I had the pleasure with being together almost every day for the past 3 years.
Be #CRITICAL While I was writing on my speech, I received an E-mail from our President Prof. Dr. Klingemann, who said: Don ́t forget to be critical. As much as I could be picky and criticise things that have not worked out the way they were suppose to at Berlin International, I think that there are much bigger issues that should be addressed. For example racism and social acceptance. We live at a time right now, where the very first paragraph of our constitution is being threatened. It says: Human dignity shall be inviolable. We can not, and we should not let hatred dominate our society. Instead of building walls, we should tear them down and make room for kindness, understanding and caring. Berlin International, with a community of people of diverse nationalities, ages, backgrounds, characteristics and different educational experiences, lays the foundation for communication, integration, and appreciation, which are the very cores of humanity. In my personal opinion, being part of this community has not only expanded my knowledge in a specific area, it has rather developed my understanding of what it means, to be open to and indulge in other cultures, to acknowledge and support people from different social backgrounds, and to be aware not to judge somebody based on their skin color, origin or believe. With an open mind, I am convinced that each and every one of us can spur a little change in the world for that matter.
Have #FUN But not everything has to be so serious here at Berlin International. In fact, I like to think back about my time here as a lot of fun. Just to mention the legendary annual semester and Christmas parties, the monthly Stammtisch (a regular get together at a Bar), excursions to design fairs in Italy, or the participation in different workshops all over the world. Reaching the goal of a successful graduation, has required hard work, some melt downs and some sleepless nights, but having fun along the way greatly contributed to our accomplishment. Or to put it in the words of Sid Ceasar (an American comedian) "In between goals is a thing called life that has to be lived and enjoyed."
Be #YOURSELF Lastly, I asked my dad, what would people expect of me to say? And he said, just be yourself, speak from your heart. To be honest, I ́m a perfectionist, I like to achieve things. My dad and I used to run together. Over the past 13 years, we have participated in different running events. Each and every time, we start together as one of the last people from the starting line. And each and every time I am asking, why do we have to start from so far behind? And my dad would always say, well, we can ́t keep up with the fast people, so let them run up front. The slower people, we will pass on the way. It will take some time anyway until everyone has found their pace. I never really completely understood what he meant until I came across this little story that I want to share with you: NEW YORK is 3 hours ahead of California, but that doesn ́t make California slow. Someone graduated at the age of 22, but waited 5 years before securing a good job. Someone became a CEO at 25, and died at 50. While another became a CEO at 50, and lived to 90 years. Obama retired at 55 & Trump started at 70. Everyone in this world works based on their time zone. People around you may seem to be ahead of you, & some might seem to be behind. But everyone is running their own race, in their own time. Do not envy them & do not mock them. They are in their time zone, and you are in yours. So my message to you is: No matter what country you were born in, what background you come from or what languages you speak, no matter what circumstances brought you to this very day, and no matter what your future endeavours are.... Life isn't what you're given, it is what you create, what you conquer and what you aim to achieve at a time and pace that is right for you.
#have fun at whatever you do But most importantly...
Be #YOURSELF Congratulations. I wish everyone the very best for the future. THANK YOU!
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