The post-graduate Master in International European Studies has revealed to be a great investment for giving a boost to one’s career, as the statistics for its 33rd edition clearly show.
Since 2004, the IMES programme has been training students eager to improve their knowledge of the European Union structure, functioning and policies and to acquire practical skills and sounding understanding of the EU funding programmes. The Master participants are awarded with a Diploma in EU Policy Advisory and Project Consultancy in EU funding programmes, enriching their professional profile with those competences which are more and more required at the EU level and not only.
The added value of the Master, along with the setting in the city core of the European Union, derives from the long-lasting collaboration between the European Desk of the Belgian-Italian Chamber of Commerce and the Institute of the European Studies of the Université Catholique de Louvain-La-Neuve, one of Belgium’s and Europe’s leading universities since 1425. This partnership allows students to gain a precise and in-depth overview of the European Institutions, thanks to the expertise of the UCL, and a hands-on experience on the drafting of grants and tenders provided by the experts working on a daily base on the field of the Belgian-Italian Chamber of Commerce.
The Master with its combination between learning-by-doing and theoretic approaches is an opportunity for participants to enter the EU job market which requires proactive and well-prepared people. During the whole Master, students are followed by experts, advisors and lobbyists working in Brussels and who share their experiences to help students to upgrade their careers and to enhance their opportunities. Furthermore, students’ communicative and interpersonal skills are tested through group-works and presentations which are keys competencies for Policy Advisors and Project Consultants.
Besides, the Master gives access to a series of tools which have the main purpose of helping students to develop their attractiveness on the labour market. A good instance for what has been said is the Job Link Module, a session of one-to-one meetings with a professional recruiter who will give advice to refine the CVs of the students. In addition to that, the Master provides an online service to support students in their research for job and internships opportunities: in this online platform vacancies are published every week and students are monitored and followed in their training from the very beginning of the Master till 12 months after it. Thirdly, the Belgian-Italian Chamber of Commerce is concretely engaged in including the Master attendants in its vast network by offering them the CV Book tool. This publication is sent to hundreds of European organisations, companies and associations in Brussels and throughout Europe and allows the employers to select the most suitable candidates for their organization.
The outcomes of these measures are evident. Among the 18 students who attended the 32nd Edition which ended in July 2021, more than 70% have found a job/internship while they were attending the Master or right after the end.
Most of the 33rd edition students (70%) are now working in Belgium, whereas others (10%) returned back to their home country or they have succeeded in finding a job in another EU country.
The main sectors where participants of the 32nd edition are now employed are Consultancy and Law firms, NGOs, EU institutions.
The strong point of the IMES Master is that it gives the students a chance to find their place in the EU field, whatever their study background. The majority of IMES’ participants are from the politics, economics and management sector, but also from the sectors of philosophy, languages, communications and many others.