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mar. 20 juillet 2021

Graduation Ceremony held in Neuchâtel for the students of the 21st Edition of the FIFA MASTER

The Graduation Ceremony for the 21st edition FIFA Master class was held in the Grand Council Room at the Chateau of Neuchâtel on Friday 16th July

The event was opened by Mr. Pierre Cornu, President of the CIES Foundation Council, as he warmly welcomed the members of the 21st class to this special event to mark the end of their studies on the course.

This memorable day was not only to mark the hard work and achievements of the entire class over the last year, but also provided a unique moment during which the students could proudly reflect on the great adventure of the FIFA Master and the new and lasting friendships which has been created.

For the summer 2021 ceremony, Mrs Crystel Graf, State Councillor, Head of the Department of Education, Digitalisation and Sport and official representative of the Government from the Canton of Neuchâtel, Mr. Simon Bradbury, Pro-Vice Chancellor & Dean of the Faculty of Arts, Design and Humanities at De Montfort University (DMU) in Leicester (UK), Professor Giuseppe Soda, Dean of SDA Bocconi School of Management in Milan (Italy) and Professor Jean-Marie Grether, Vice-Rector of the University of Neuchâtel (Switzerland), all delivered speeches to the twenty-five postgraduate students and offered advice as they now look to build their careers in international sport.

They were joined by Mr. Mike-David Burkhard, as the official representative of the FIFA Master Alumni association, who spoke about the importance of the course alumni community, of maintaining networks after graduation and enjoying the significance of the ceremony. He welcomed the newest members to the FIFA Master Alumni Association global network.

The Patron for the 21st edition class was announced as the FIFA General Secretary, Ms Fatma Samoura who had generously already met with the students during a special guest lecture as part of the Humanities of Sport module in Leicester and also as part of a course field visit to the FIFA headquarters in Zurich during the Neuchâtel Sports Law module. She was represented at the graduation ceremony by Mr Solomon Mudege who is Group Leader for Development Programmes (Member Associations Division) at FIFA. Mr Mudege delivered a speech on behalf of Ms Samoura congratulating the class on the completion of their studies on the course.

Next, the postgraduates were called one by one by Mr Vincent Schatzmann, CIES General Secretary, to receive their degree certificates as they were awarded to each student by Mr Mudege.

The ceremony then moved to the "Alberto Madella Award", which recognises the group of students who had delivered the best presentation during the Final Project Conference the previous day. For 2021, the course Scientific Committee made the decision to award this prize to two groups. Congratulations to the winning projects of “How to Bridge the Gap in Women’s Football: “Haba na haba hujaza kibaba” – little by little fills the measure by Thomas Grimm (Germany), Lorenzo Mazzone (Italy), Heather O’Keeffe (Australia & USA), Diana Yonah (Kenya) and “Pirates of the stream: An assessment of illegal streaming of European football” by Nisrein Al Qaisi (Jordan), Amra Kubat (Bosnia & Croatia), Nitish Metikurke (India), David Ribeiro (Portugal & South Africa), Dilara Yasacan (Russia & Turkey).

This was followed by current edition class representatives Ms Fatou Binetou Ba (Senegal) and Mr Khair Rizauddin (Singapore) who addressed the class separately as they reflected on the journey taken by the group and the strength of character they had all shown despite the difficulties posed by the covid pandemic. “We stand here today as stronger individuals” noted Fabi in an emotional speech which also thanked the course teams in Leicester, Milan and Neuchatel, and also the families of the class members for their important support throughout the year too. “The journey does not end here”, added Khair, who also highlighted the lifelong friendships which had been made in the class.

Before closing the ceremony, Mr Cornu thanked the Scientific Committee and Co-ordination staff at the three partner universities for their hard work and dedication in delivering the course in such challenging circumstances this year. He then invited the new FIFA Master graduates to continue the celebrations by enjoying a cocktail in the courtyard of the Château of Neuchâtel.

CIES, De Montfort University, SDA Bocconi School of Management and the University of Neuchâtel all warmly congratulate the new graduates of the 21st edition of the FIFA Master and wish you all every success for the future!

FIFA Master - International Master in Management, Law and Humanities of Sport, ranked No.1 Course in Europe 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020 by the SportBusiness International global rankings.

Organised by CIES in partnership with De Montfort University (United Kingdom), SDA Bocconi School of Management (Italy) and the University of Neuchâtel (Switzerland).

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