My GSERM Experience

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I am the Academic Director of New Managers Leadership Program and top 100 medium sized-companies ‘partnership at Strathmore Business School (SBS). I have extensive experience in design and implementation of leadership development programs for executives. At SBS, I previously worked as the executive education director, where I was deeply involved in design and management of executive development programs in the East African region. I am currently pursuing my doctorate at Gordon Institute of Business Science (GIBS) in South Africa, working to defend my research proposal this year. My areas of research interest include leadership and organizational development, talent development and mentorship.

Preparing for my maiden trip to Switzerland was exciting. I received a lot of information from the GSERM program team and studied the maps with the proverbial toothpick because I had been forewarned that moving around on your day of arrival is an “experience.” It turned out that it was nothing like I had expected, as I was warmly welcomed by the Swiss people, most of whom were walking up or down the hilly St. Gallen City.

It was difficult choosing courses, which ran concurrently, as I felt time was just right for most of them. I enrolled in Mixed Methods Research and Network Analysis for statistical analysis of social network data. My two-week experience at the University of St. Gallen was invigorating and eye-opening as I engaged with Ph.D students and postdocs from diverse backgrounds. Participants were drawn from top universities across the globe, and because we were at different phases of our Ph.D journey, I was privileged to draw on the knowledge and experiences of each participant in different ways.

I learned many new ideas, insights, and methodologies that I will use to enhance the quality of my research. Professors were highly qualified and renowned in their disciplines. I found the professors particularly keen on our unique research interests, and they would extend beyond class hours to provide personalized attention to specific issues that could not be addressed in the session as well as to gain a better understanding of students’ areas of research interests.

The adage “Work hard, Play Hard, all day, every-day” was real at St. Gallen. The impressive part is that I fitted into the walking culture fast and I took a 10-minute walk to & from the University everyday, not to mention the daily walks to the various venues where extra curricula activities were held. It is incredible how The University of St. Gallen has been able to integrate extra curricula activities into the formal study programmes, making it easy for students to visit tourist attraction sites within and outside the city during their stay. My most exciting experience was an excursion to Appenzell, a small yet charming city with such a rich cultural history, where we got to handicraft a key chain among other fun activities.

I am sincerely grateful to Dr. Hans- Joachim Knopf and The University of St. Gallen program team for their hospitality and spirit of service. For me, University of St. Gallen was indeed a home away from home.

“My two-week experience at the University of St. Gallen was invigorating and eye-opening as I engaged with Ph.D students and postdocs from diverse backgrounds. Participants were drawn from top universities across the globe, and because we were at different phases of our Ph.D journey, I was privileged to draw on the knowledge and experiences of each participant in different ways.”Agnes Ruoro

Mixed Methods course facilitators Prof John Burke and Prof Shailaja of K. J. Somaiya of The Institute of Management and Research

Colleagues from Strathmore Business School

Celebrating a birthday for one of the GSERM participants from Pakistan. Got to sing “Happy Birthday” lyrics in 5 different languages

Meeting new people at the welcome dinner at Schloss Untereggen

Agnes Ruoro is the Director of New Managers Leadership Program and top 100 medium sized-companies partnership at Strathmore Business School (SBS)