Annual Report 06/07
Board of European Students of Technology
Welcome! “Not for school but for life we learn” - there is hardly any student organisation, which puts this into reality better than BEST. By spanning as a multicultural team of engineering students all over Europe, BEST helps its members to become internationally minded team workers. BEST members take the challenge to continuously improve their skills and experiences and become tomorrow’s best engineers. We invite you to take a look at the following pages and enjoy reading about our last year ’s achievements.
Table of Content XIX Board of BEST
BEST in management
How we do it
Map of groups
Goals of the year
BEST in LBGs
BEST in services
BEST in cooperation
Why we do it
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Word from XIX Board of BEST One year has passed and another piece in the history of BEST can be written down. The dynamic organisation, full of motivated students of technology daring to take initiative and to develop their ideas, has moved forward the past year. Connecting more than 75 prominent universities of technology in Europe, our goal is to keep on creating possibilities for students of technology in order to help them develop more in the ever changing environment by giving the opportunity to learn about new working methods, understand the importance of innovation and to appreciate the cultural diversity in and outside of Europe. Not only do we build the future of BEST, but we are also eager to improve our skills to become the competent managers of tomorrow. As the International Board, we are satisfied with this year’s achievements. This Annual Report will explain more how BEST and its members worked together to build a bright future. Enjoy reading and feel invited to cooperate in one of our projects.
President: Bartek Lipnicki Secretary: Bram Simons Treasurer: Luka Vidmar Vice President for External Services: Tzveta Dimitrova Vice President for Internal Support: Manuel Gay Vice President for Local Group Support: Katy Vanbrabant
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... in 60 seconds Once upon a time... before there was the Internet, before Euro, and before low cost airlines... there was a group of students with an idea. Their vision was to unite European students of technology by increasing the possibility for student exchanges and by providing a communication platform for them, universities and companies, in order to “Promote Europe among Europeans”. After two years of planning and discussions, starting from the International Week in Stockholm in 1987, followed by meetings in Grenoble and Eindhoven, BEST was officially founded in Berlin in April 1989. What started as a collaboration of 14 Local BEST Groups from technical universities around Europe has now grown into an immense organisation with 76 groups spread over 29 countries and with over 2.000 members actively involved in the organisation. Who could have guessed that 18 years later, BEST has grown up to be the well-established, mature organisation that it is today. Truly an achievement to be proud of!
BEST in numbers: 76 Local BEST Groups 2.000 Members 29 Countries 59 Courses 5 BEST Engineering Competitions 5 Events on Education 6 Leisure Events 3 Courses on Career Related Skills 65 Internal events 900.000 Target students
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BEST Identity Vision Empowered diversity People understand and respect different cultures and societies. The environment of empowered diversity supports people in applying their full potential and acting responsibly.
Mission Developing students BEST helps students to achieve an international mindset, to reach a better understanding of cultures and societies and to develop the capacity
diverse environments. BEST
personal development of students and supports them in reaching their full potential.
BEST Spirit Flexibility We seek the ability to make changes and deal with changing conditions.
We are open to everything new. We value and raise the ability of being mobile and to quickly respond to changes in the environment or any other obstacles that we face.
Friendship We build good relationships in which people help, support and care for one another.
We value good personal relations and teamwork. We focus on each person involved in our activities and in this way we create synergy.
Fun We enjoy everything we do.
We value positive emotions of the people involved in our actions. We strive to make our activities enjoyable to everybody who is connected to them. We act with passion and strive to share this passion with people around us.
Improvement We strive to continuously improve the standards in everything we do.
We use all our creativity to enhance the way we work. This is to guarantee constant development of our actions.
Learning We gain skills and understanding through experience.
We value everything we learn through the experience of being involved in our activities and we strive to learn as much as possible from every aspect of our work. We value personal development and strive for an open learning community, where we have the freedom to share and develop ideas.
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New University of Lisbon
Middle East Technical University
National Technical University of Athens
Technical University of Catalonia
University of Belgrade
“Transilvania” University of Brasov
Slovak University of Technology
Brno University of Technology
Free University of Brussels (VUB)
Free University of Brussels (ULB)
POLITEHNICA University of Bucharest
Budapest University of Technology and Economics
Technical University of Crete (T.U.C.)
Technical University of Cluj-Napoca
University of Coimbra
Technical University of Denmark
Eindhoven University of Technology
Urals State University of Railway Transport
Urals State Technical University
Tam Helsinki Uppsala Stockholm
National Institute for Advanced Technologies
Gdansk University of Technology
Silesian University of Technology in Gliwice
Chalmers University of Technology
Graz University of Technology
National Polytechnic Institute of Grenoble
Warsaw Lodz Eindhoven Ghent Brussels
Leuven Louvain-la-Neuve Liege
Helsinki University of Technology
“Gheorghe Asachi” Technical University of Iasi
Istanbul Technical University
Kaunas University of Technology
Technical University of Kosice
AGH - University of Science and Technology
Katholieke Universiteit Leuven
University of Liege
Technical Higher Education Institute, Technical University of Lisbon
University of Ljubljana
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Technical University of Lodz
Catholic University of Louvain
Lund University, Faculty of Engineering
Polytechnical University of Madrid
Carlos III University of Madrid
Madrid Carlos III
University of Maribor
Politechnic of Milan
Bauman Moscow State Technical University
National Polytechnic Institute of Lorraine
University of Naples “Federico II”
Lviv Polytechnic National University
University of Novi Sad
Paris, Ecole Centrale
University of Patras
University of Porto
University of Iceland
Riga Technical University
Technical University of Sofia
Royal Institute of Technology
Tallinn University of Technology
Tampere University of Technology
Tampere Thessaloniki Timisoara
Norwegian University of Science and Technology
Politechnic of Turin
University “Ss. Cyril and Methodius”
Aristotle University of Thessaloniki
Rome Rome, Tor Vergata
“Politehnica” University of Timisoara
“Sapienza”, University of Rome University of Rome “Tor Vergata”
University of Valladolid
University of Pannonia
Vienna University of Technology
Warsaw University of Technology
University of Zagreb
Zaporizhzhya National Technical University
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BEST in LBGs Constantly growing New rules for the superlative: big, bigger, BEST! Even though the “E” in BEST stands for “European”, we have managed to break the geographical borders, stepping ahead of politics and welcoming among us another “Asian” BEST group: Ankara. Once again we have proved that in BEST there are no countries, no unions, no borders keeping us apart. What brings us together are the open-mindedness, the professionalism, the will to do more, to be more - that characterise the members all over our world. Local Groups growth in 1990-2007
Even though we are a network of friends, becoming one of us can be a tough and demanding process: the new groups have to prove their excellent organisational skills going through different phases: from observers to baby and then to full members of the organisation. They are, of course, not alone in this quest - BEST and its older groups are constantly striving to develop together with the newcomers in the pursuit of better quality of their services.
Success story From observer to baby, from baby to full member, a local group’s life is full of events, struggles and accomplishments. It breathes through its members’ will and enthusiasm; it feels history through its generations, it dreams through its goals and expectations. Born in 1995 as a baby member of the BEST family, BEST Bucharest gained full membership in two years. From the beginning they took many challenges and in one year’s time they organised up to four courses, one or two job fairs, a TrainShop or a WorkShop, even taking the challenge for a General Assembly and a Presidents’ Meeting. All this time, the motivation and the gained experience created leaders and over 9 years, 7 BEST Bucharest members were part of several international Boards of BEST. With every year, the quality of their events increased and new events were born. From a local job fair that would gather 10 companies in 1999, JobShop® is nowadays a brand well known in the POLITEHNICA University of Bucharest, bringing together 100 companies and more than 5000 students. This is what BEST is all about!
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BEST in services The mission of BEST is all about developing students. All students of technology in the universities with a local group have the opportunity to acquire an international mindset. By taking part in a BEST event among students from all over Europe, BEST allows them to reach a better understanding of other cultures in another country than their own. Being involved in several projects with the other Europeans, they develop the capacity to work in diverse cultural environments. Thus, the services of BEST facilitate personal development and support students to reach their full potential.
Aim of our services Be it winter, spring, summer or autumn, no matter the season, BEST courses are covering Europe all year long. Multicultural learning environments, innovative teaching methods, working together with other 20 fellow students are a part of BEST’s offer to Europe’s future engineers since 1991. Through all this experience, BEST tries to prepare them in taking the step towards the “real life”. At many courses, besides the lectures there are several company visits where the participants can get in contact with European companies that can be the start for their future international career. Many students take advantage of the complementary education offered by BEST and often the events they attend motivate them to join our organisation in order to be able to provide the same experience to other students and carry on with our tradition of events “for students, by students”.
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Complementary education Just another boring lecture? Another nail biting seminar? Definitely not! BEST courses are something else: a step ahead in the complementary education of the students of engineering. Uniting about 20 students from all over Europe for a week or two, a BEST course complements the knowledge transmitted in the lectures and practical sessions through cultural exchange and intensive interaction.
Why do we organise courses? In an effort to substantially contribute to the development of the new generations of competent engineers, BEST has courses as its core activity. In a world where technology is not a sole requirement, abilities as communication, cultural mix and mutual understanding complete the university education. This is exactly what BEST has to offer to the future engineers through the tens of courses organised annually by the local groups all over Europe.
Number of applied/accepted students in 2003-2006 Year
Participant´s experience What I felt after I found out I had been accepted to B5 Summer Course in Ekaterinburg is hard to describe. Saying it was overwhelming is an understatement. So there I was - dreaming of the adventure of travelling on the Trans-Siberian and of the challenge to communicate in a country where one cannot rely on English. To be honest, I was scared! But, when I got there, the fear disappeared. Was it the international environment I was in? Or was it the feeling that I was somewhere special? Either way, those were truly life altering weeks, shared with people who were once strangers and now friends. Pedro Neves
BEST Courses As shown below, the palette of course topics that the students can choose from is rich. What cannot be shown there though is that the academic part is regarded very seriously. The final tests and the ECTS points awarded for taking part in most of these events are self standing proofs of the knowledge gained and the work load for the participants. The attempt to offer more than just another set of lectures changed the teaching methods used, that vary from modern training systems and seminars to practical sessions and company visits, where students get into contact with the real world. The sessions can develop into two-way learning: professors, professional trainers or company representatives are often pleasantly surprised by what they themselves have intellectually gained from the discussions.
BEST Courses on Technology according to field of study Field
Aerospace & Mechanical Engineering
Material & Environmental & Chemical Engineering
Computer Science & Electrical Engineering
Bio-Engineering & Biomedical Engineering
Architecture & Civil Engineering
Professor´s experience To see a group of upcoming engineers and scientists trying to evolve new ideas and developing their own very straightforward approach to handle the situation and their learning desire leaves me optimistic that they are far better prepared to cope with the demands of industrial and scientific programmes than many of us were when we entered the profession. Dipl. Ing. Stefan Oschkera
BEST Engineering Competitions BEST Engineering Competitions are events that take students out of the classrooms and make them face unexpected situations that they have to solve. Whether it is a debate, a team design competition or a negotiation, the participants have to prove their inquisitiveness and spontaneity, to think out of the box and to bring forth their engineering talents or communication skills.
Company´s experience From a company’s point of view, the role played by student organisations may sometimes be seen punctually, as event organisers and most often this relates to the need of recruiting future employees. For me, as a man involved in HR, I know that the role of a student organisation is to personally develop the student community it represents. The ones that are involved and answer challenges today will tomorrow be society’s valuable resources. Partnering BEST, I had the opportunity to see that we share common values and spirit at work as in my company. Paul Caramidariu MA HRM Country HR Operations Manager Romania Honeywell ACS President of West HR Club
BEST Engineering competition organiser’s experience It is not at all about formal relations between two entities. A good relationship is built on trust, permanent communication and feedback. Beyond the famous company brand we found people with young hearts and high aims. What they found while working with BEST was seriousness, commitment and support. This is how we started building a long term successful collaboration. Iuliana Nalatan Main organiser of Engineering Competition BEST Timisoara
Career related skills events
Without being exclusivist, BEST addresses the “crème
BEST isn’t all about intellectual activities and hard
de la crème” of the future engineers putting forward
work. Entertainment and spending time in an active
events that will prepare them for outstanding career
way is also important. The leisure events that we
paths. The career related courses provide students
organise bring valuable memories and a lot of friends,
necessary soft skills, team work ability, intercultural
together with a new definition of having fun: tasting
understanding, leading techniques and knowledge
other cultures that can be found on “the Old Continent”
that will help them climb the highest peaks in their
while travelling, skiing or practising other hobbies.
Educational involvement Thematic Networks A Thematic Network is a cooperation between departments of higher education institutions and academic organisations or professional bodies. By participating in Thematic Networks, BEST becomes a connection between the European students of technology and universities, professors and companies. It gives students the opportunity to take part in improving the quality and value of engineering education in Europe.
ReVE One of the Thematic Networks projects in which BEST has participated as strategic partner for the past two years is “Real Virtual Erasmus” - ReVE. BEST successfully gave students and teachers the opportunity to share their ideas and visions on this topic on two Events on Education in Porto and Bucharest. ReVE is part of Thematic Network EuroPACE
Commission. This Thematic Network aims to develop a real virtual Erasmus program which gives students a chance to study in the same time at a second university through the Internet.
Real Virtual Erasmus: How to broaden the students experience offering virtual mobility. ReVE was a project coordinated by EuroPACE, under the eLearning program of the European Commission. The output of the project is the Virtual Mobility Manual (reve.europace.org/drupal). Through input from BEST, as a partner, it was possible to gather the students’ perspectives on Virtual Mobility and to take into account their remarks. The manual promotes e-learning as a component of the students’ experience and helps them understand the differences between “virtual Erasmus” and “traditional Erasmus”. Christine Michielsen
VM-BASE & SPUTNIC In January 2007 two brand new projects were
opportunity to help in improving engineering education in Europe. BEST joined “Seminars for Promoting the Use of Technologies for Networking and International Collaboration” (SPUTNIC), which aims to raise the awareness on
“Virtual Mobility Before and After Student Exchanges” - VM-BASE which is working on the enhancement of the impact and efficiency of the Erasmus program.
Events on Education BEST’s educational programme revolves around its Events on Education. Within 4-5 days, educational-related issues are intensively discussed in cooperation with the stakeholders on education, to gather high quality outcomes, which are afterwards transferred to the interested parties. Events on Education can be one of the two following categories: BEST Academics and Companies Forum (BACo) and BEST Symposiums.
BEST Academics and Companies Forum BEST aims to bring the Student-University-Company triangle closer. This is something that can be seen happening at a great scale with the BEST Academics and Companies Forum - BACo. BACos are events that wish to improve the relations between all three stakeholders of European Engineering Education. Representatives from each of the partners convene in a welcoming environment, prepared by a local group, which along with the guidance of the Educational Committee of BEST and the support from Thematic Networks. Having as a common background the relationship and connection amongst the three partners, opinions and experiences on a wide variety of subjects are discussed and exchanged. The outcomes of the forum are meant to offer the stakeholders a knowledge base on education with the opinions of individuals, in order to assist them in their policy and decision making process. BACos have successfully taken place in Zagreb’05, Istanbul’06 and Brussels’07 and rated highly by all participating parties.
I had the pleasure to represent my school Helsinki Polytechnic Stadia in BACo 2007. The support from IBM was immense; top researchers and management spent their time with the BACo group. For me, the event was an opportunity to discuss with European students and meet new colleagues. The sought interaction between academics and industry was well achieved. I hope that this kind of events will be organised also in future
. Päivi Tossavainen, D.Sc. Principal Lecturer Industrial Management Faculty of Technology Helsinki Polytechnic Stadia
In 2004 we’ve had our first information sessions with BEST in Leuven and Brussels, on request of the students to get a deeper insight in economic factors that are ruling the business and to discover IBM as a future employer, focussing on value services. IBM’s participation at the BEST Event in Latour de Freins was a unique opportunity to extend this insight to the world of Services Science. The close collaboration between business experts and very dynamic and enthusiastic students - in the preparation phase as well as during execution - has made these two days very successful. Paul Van Droogenbroeck Governmental Programs & Academic Relations Executive IBM Belgium and Luxembourg
BEST Symposia Several times a year, BEST organises symposia where students and professors debate on a main topic from a Thematic Network project, expressing their ideas on how to lift European education to a higher level. The outcomes of the symposia provide a better overview on educational topics to the stakeholders. During the past year, four BEST Symposia were successfully organised: Venue
Virtual mobility as the educational challenge of the Future
EIE-S and ReVE
National and European challenges in the Bologna process implementation
Engineering demand and offer in Europe
E-learning and student mobility in higher education
Through its well developed program, the Educational Committee of BEST increases the awareness of students of technology on educational matters in order for them to develop even further. We enable the exchange of knowledge and opinions between students, professors and companies in a multicultural environment. The resulting outcomes are used by European Engineering Education stakeholders and the Thematic Networks we cooperate closely with.
Conferences To establish promising cooperation and achieve the goal of taking European Engineering Education to a higher level, members of the Educational Committee of BEST attended a wide variety of conferences where they were especially invited to in order to contribute with their presence and active participation. During these conferences, strong relationships have been built between BEST students and Academics. Thus, as educational stakeholders, students have that way been given a more direct way into the world of Education, now from a side different to the one they were used to. That way creating a unique opportunity in order to bridge the gap that has long been existing and bringing the two sides closer. But there is more to gain, through this interaction during the last year an important cooperation has been created between BEST and SEFI (Societe Europeene pour la Formation des Ingenieurs) as well as a cooperation between BEST and FEANI (European Federation of National Engineering Associations) and last but not least BEST has been invited to become an IFEES member (International Federation of Engineering Education Societies).
Why we do it More than 2.000 students dedicate themselves to BEST in their spare time. They help organising events, attend local meetings, travel to a WorkShop or a training event, or actively take part in one of the many international projects. Every year, more and more students are eager to be a member of this organisation, but how does BEST bring such a motivation
You can discover it on a poster, or by talking with your friends, but no matter how you hear about BEST, you join because you like the idea of being part of an international environment, discovering new fields you barely heard about. Our members are students of technology with the ambition to develop their skills and the desire to do something extra in their student life. BEST offers the opportunity to organise events for students from many different European countries, to work together virtually on a project in an international team, to lead a team or to facilitate international meetings. Each member has its own ambition, but their common interest is the passion to develop new skills, keep on improving in various fields, and enjoy it at the same time. They gain motivation by achieving their goals and taking several steps ahead. BEST is the perfect playground for students to develop and to get ready for their future. The students work in a European environment where they learn to understand and accept each other´s differences and benefit from it.
I love BEST Why? Oh! Let’s see. Because it has changed my life! Since I’ve joined BEST I feel like a part of a big international family. BEST gives me an opportunity to travel, meet lovely people, party all night and improve my knowledge at the same time. There is nothing better than thinking of those unforgettable moments with BEST members from other countries over a steaming cup of coffee while studying for an exam. Diana Wosik
BEST in Management When talking with alumni of BEST they assure one thing: nowadays, BEST is big! Driven by 76 local groups spread in 29 European countries, more than 2.000 active members and more than 80 public events organised every year, BEST reaches a size which makes its overall coordination a challenge - a challenge taken by 12 young people and the local groups.
Structure of BEST As a student organisation, BEST tries always to keep a flat structure. Driven by 76 local groups, the overall activity of BEST is coordinated and supported by the International Board and 6 international teams. In addition many international projects are developed in BEST, which are carried out by interested members and supervised by a project leader. Furthermore, BEST is arranged in regions. Each region has a regional advisor, responsible for the link between international bodies and the local groups.
for up VP Gro t l ca ppor Su
Board The International Board of BEST leads the organisation and is responsible of its overall activities. Six committed members work together through virtual means. They are always on the road and present at every BEST event to ensure the well being of the organisation.
International teams As BEST grew in size and activities, the need of international teams appeared to take care of specific fields. Each of these teams is led by one coordinator, who distributes and plans the tasks at hand.
Information Technology Committee
Coordinator: Ömer Hantal, Istanbul Increases the awareness of students on educational matters. Connects students and institutions of higher education.
Coordinator: Joao Oliveira, Porto Coordinates, develops and maintains the IT infrastructure. Trains and helps BEST members to use the IT systems.
External Events Committee
Coordinator: Cristina Radu, Timisoara Develops the issues of complementary education. Coordinates the external events throughout the year. Assures and improves the quality of external events. Supports local groups in organising external events.
Coordinator: Marian Buhnici, Brasov Develops and implements marketing strategies. Develops and produces promotion materials.
Internal Training Committee
Corporate Relations Team
Coordinator: Herve Tunga, Louvain-la-Neuve Coordinates, develops and maintains the training system of BEST.
Coordinator: Nuno Curto, Almada Supports the Treasurer with corporate relations.
How we do it Brainstorming, outcomes, rethinking, redesigning, concluding, reporting, e-mail, click, send, 35.000km, satellite, another 35.000km, inbox, receiving, reading, rethinking, going back in the same loop, new ideas, out of the box, night, 4 a.m., still online, meeting, people on different time zones, plan, work, trip: InterRail, low cost airline, hitch-hike, destination!, old friends that you’ve never seen, the ones on different time zones that you worked with many nights and days, work again, share, enjoy, one hour sleep, atmosphere, energy - BEST spirit!
Ankara - Madrid: a two times 35.000 km trip in a matter of milliseconds with one stop on the satellite. It is just one of the thousand e-mails that make up the merry-go-round of the inboxes of the BEST members all over Europe. However, keeping the pace with what is happening in the BEST world is the first task that precedes the challenges of getting involved in the team. A team of people sharing the same interests and aspirations, but who come from different cultures; a team where communication is the key of success. In order to optimise it, the online meetings and the Private Area are two important tools used on the daily basis. The Private Area is a web application maintained by the Information Technology Committe of BEST; it is the playground of the BEST members, where they can share their ideas and experience. But who would not be curious to actually meet the people that they work with every day? Obviously, there are live meetings among BEST members, and they are quite numerous: the WorkShops are the think tanks where new ideas arise, the Summer Meetings and Inter Project Forums are opportunities for the international teams’ members to come together and work on different projects. Last but not least, the Presidents’ Meetings and the General Assemblies are the biggest BEST events and the decision making bodies. Type
Number of events
Number of participants
2: Ghent (Belgium) and France
International Teams Meetings
International Project Forum
Training System Training - a concept which has been around in BEST since the very beginning - really kicked off in 1998: a small group of motivated members got together, and soon the first Trainer’s Camp was created. Currently it’s at its 9th edition along with a diversity of TrainShops and topics. Since the beginning, the focus is put on quality of training, supported by an evaluation of the system.
Quality of Training System Since the very beginning, training in BEST is focused on quality, both of the training system and of its trainers. The career of a trainer starts at the Trainers Camp, where the participants are taught several methods which they can use in order to provide a training session in the best way possible. Additionally, there is always a thorough needs assessment done before every training session and event. For 4 years already, the different learning styles of people are being taken into account with the implementation of the 4MAT method as the main design tool for training. This makes learning more effective and meaningful. One of the major drivers of quality of the Training System of BEST is the second level education. Provided by experienced trainers, second level education is transmitted at trainers’ meeting which are organised whenever it is needed to reach a deeper knowledge on a given topic, such as advanced coaching techniques.
Evaluation of Training System BEST is growing and changing day by day, and its Training System needs to adapt to those changes. The evaluation of training started with the one of the trainer education by asking “Why is trainer education needed?” and the natural answer given was “in order to provide quality in training”. This is why the evaluation of the system cannot be done without taking into account the quality factor, one of the main components of the new evaluation framework. Extensive surveys were built for trainers and BEST members, in order to get a better understanding of needs in trainer education and training in BEST.
Goals of the year Every year a reflection on the past and a glimpse to the future is made by the International Board to set the direction of BEST for the upcoming year. The path of BEST might take different turns, but in order to adapt to the ever-changing environment, BEST grows every year by being open towards changes to stay a fresh and dynamic organisation. Have a look on the steps BEST made this year.
External Services When joining BEST, you discover that the main projects of BEST are those in favour of students of technology to experience the multi-cultural environment and ability to grow and learn in new ways. What BEST does is to provide services to students. Due to the changing environment our services need to adapt to the needs of their consumers. In other words students of technology. This means that not only BEST as a whole has to grow but also our services we provide need to develop at the same rate in order to help students grow even more.
Closer cooperation with professors during BEST Courses This year a fruitful project has started to enhance the input “of from” academics in our main core activity : BEST Courses. Not only students of technology but also professors have now access to our application system in order to receive feedback on their lectures, as well as to give their impression on our activities. This enables us to get another point of view and therefore helps us determining if our services are developing in the right direction. Recognition of BEST Courses BEST strives for quality. By getting the quality of BEST Courses recognised officially, we can make them even more visible. The diversity of the European educational systems makes this a challenge, but recent higher educational developments are creating possible paths to take. A stronger promotion towards students about the possibility to issue credits, as well as providing more suitable official documents were one of the many improvements achieved this year.
Improving communication and working ways in BEST Every year we strive to work more efficiently while keeping high quality standards, always pushing our own limits and increasing the standards! Not only keeping them up but also communicating them clearly to everybody is a must, in order to keep BEST developing itself and improving the working ways of our members. Together for a better Visual Identity In order to develop a better and more suitable Visual Identity BEST cooperated with Definition Design, a Polish company specialised in creating the visual elements for organisations. Getting to understand better the Identity of BEST and thus the overall aim and spirit of the organisation, we worked closely together with this company in the search to a more clear visual image. During this cooperation we learned a lot from each other and we gained another little step forward in this matter.
New working method introduced: Open Space Technology Open Space Technology (OST) is an innovative way of working on complex problems, giving the possibility to all participating people (from minimum 5 to more than 2.000) to use their full potential during the meeting. The schedule is done during the meeting with all the participants, and it is self-organised. This working method was applied this year during a WorkShop, where 15 people participated for 4 days, and during the General Assembly, where during one full day more than 200 people took part to discuss and find solutions for current issues in BEST. This methods brings new ideas along and makes our members learn about different approaches.
Finances of BEST in 2006-2007 In 18 years of its existence BEST constantly improves its positioning in the European market, based on professional approach, innovative idea and quality services towards students, organisations and companies. This increases its visibility and it results in wider panel of cooperation possibilities with several enterprises and European institutions. Its finances reflect its efforts and main directions. Main source of revenues and categories of expenses are presented in the following charts.
Revenues Total budget consisted of almost 116.000 Euros. The revenues are ensured by cooperation with partners and grants, based on trust and on the added value BEST brings to the society. This year BEST didn’t succeed in the application for European Commission grant. However, improved services for our fellow students and partners on the top of constantly growing network created desired conditions for BEST to ensure financial stability trough strengthening relations with its mainly Corporate partners. Corporate partners support BEST for its activities, services for students offered by students, as those soon-to-be graduates will drive these companies in the next years.
Career Support Partners
Expenses BEST is spending its resources in order to ensure the positioning of the organisation in the European society. On one side it needs to support its well functioning working structure which is based on several working meetings, both General Meetings as the most important ones. It needs to train its members to sustain and improve the quality of its services and bring the varieties of its activities closer to all its stakeholders. On the other side BEST needs constant presence in several programmes of European foundations and in meetings with its partners in order to stay in touch with developing trends of the society and thus adopting its services accordingly.
External communication Administration
Alumni Joining BEST is their common point: learning to understand and enjoy working in a multi-cultural environment. One day they decided to leave the organisation for which they spent a lot of time. Now they have taken the next step in their life. But how do they see their past involvement in BEST now and how did they manage to use their gained experience? Enjoy the following words of our dear Alumni of BEST...
Alumnus after BEST BEST is a wonderful journey, an great life experience which turned me from being passive, weak and uncertain into strong and confident leader. Nowadays I am one among the top 40 senior PR practitioners who serve as members of the jury of the most respected international public relations competition called Golden World Awards. What took me there? BEST Spirit and this is what made me believe, that impossible is nothing. So BEST is like a mirror in which you can see in what you are really strong and what are the areas you should probably not concentrate on any longer. This is also the place, where you can establish the relationships with your fellows, that will last for ever as true friendship. I see that today’s BEST is as strong empowering and stimulating as it was in the past and always intended to be Grzegorz Szczepanski Corporate Communications Director of Bank Pekao SA, the leading bank in Poland Founder and first GM (1998-2002) of the Edemaln Poland (most awarded PR consultancy worldwide in the 2001 International Public Relations Association Golden World Awards) In 2001 elected one of the 25 best Polish managers by Home&Market business magazine.
AlumniNet AlumniNet is not just a continuation of our BEST life, but a connection of old and new members. This is just a compulsory part of our organisation which will always connect the Alumni with BEST. Being a part of AlumniNet gives the chance to turn his ideas into reality after we have seen the world from the company point of view. It is a way to bring more professional feedback to the organisation. Today AlumniNet is also working on its tools for promotion, like having a well developed features set in the BEST Private Area, updated mailing list etc.
External Relations CFES and bonding cooperation - expanding the possibilities for students! For many years now BEST has worked on expanding the possibilities for students by cooperating with similar student organisations all around the world. Currently we have two partner organisations: CFES in Canada and bonding in Germany. New interesting ideas keep arising for projects and in March 2007 a joint TrainShop was held between BEST and bonding where the participants learned about communication skills and about the two organisations. Most seasons, bonding groups also give students from BEST universities the chance to travel to Germany and take part in courses similar to those seen in BEST. On the other side of the Atlantic, namely in Canada, the idea of season courses has also arrived and each summer a couple of universities organise season courses (along with their core-activity: the competitions) and BEST members are invited to come and help. The partnership with CFES and bonding has also reached new heights with the preparations of the International Engineering Competition which will bring students from BEST, CFES and bonding together.
BEST and bonding are partners for nine years already. For
The CFES would like to send out an enormous thanks to
the first time we set up a three year cooperation plan and
all of BEST. Without all of the mutual support, none of our
had the joint TrainShop beREIT as a crown to this year of
international efforts would have been possible. Exchanging
cooperation. Since Presidents Meeting 2006 we have been
co-organisers for season courses, knowledge sharing at
discussing about the idea of the International Engineering
events, and the future International Engineering Competition:
Competition - the biggest project of our cooperation. We
the future is very bright for our continued partnership!
would like to improve our cooperation by having more joint
Especially I would like to thank all the Local BEST Groups
meetings and projects. We want to thank everybody in BEST
that have hosted CFES members; your warm welcomes
for this cooperation and wish you all the best to make our
are known across Canada. We look forward to more BEST
cooperation even stronger!
members attending our courses! Hans-Martin Riegg
International Ambassador of bonding
IR Commissioner 2007 - 2008
Conferences attended The previous year gave BEST a considerable number of opportunities to present itself to the external world. Among these events the conferences have a special status, as through them BEST reached the academical world and, thus, the main stakeholders of engineering education in Europe and worldwide, also. The first one on the list was the SEFI Annual Conference 2006 in Uppsala at the end of June where 8 BEST members were present. During the event BEST organised a well appreciated workshop on developing strategies for students’ involvement in Thematic Networks and local university policy making, and also presented the outcomes of BEST Symposia Madrid. Afterwards BEST members were the only European students that were invited to attend the American Society of Engineering Education Global Colloquium in Rio de Janeiro (October 2006). Here BEST got in contact with the leaders of the Higher Education Institutes worldwide and also made that first steps for cooperating with the International Federation of Engineering Education Societies.
To establish promising cooperations and achieve the goal of taking European Engineering Education to a higher level, members of the Educational Committee of BEST attended a wide variety of conferences where they were especially invited to in order to contribute with their presence and active participation. During these conferences, strong relationships have been built between BEST students and Academics. Thus, as educational stakeholders, students have that way been given a more direct way into the world of Education, now from a side different to the one they were used to. That way creating a unique opportunity in order to bridge the gap that has long been existing and bringing the two sides closer. But there is more to gain, through this interaction during the last year an important cooperation has been created between BEST and SEFI (Société Européenne pour la Formation des Ingénieurs) as well as a cooperation between BEST and FEANI (European Federation of National Engineering Associations) and last but not least BEST has been invited to become an IFEES member (International
Societies). Prof. Borri President of SEFI
In June, BEST attended the ALE 7th International Conference on Active Learning and presented an article on Project Based Learning, and also had an appreciated contribution in the workshops for developing new teaching methods. The BEST year concluded in Hungary with the joint conference of the 2 mother engineering education societies in Europe: SEFI and IGIP. A crew of 8 BEST members participated in the event and met with representatives of our old partners (SEFI, TREE, ALE, IFEES), and also opened the door for a future cooperation with IGIP.
BEST in Cooperation A handshake - the beginning of the cooperation between BEST and its partner companies. From there, it develops into a symbiosis where BEST facilitates the contact between students and representatives of the labour market. The most important aspect is the direct contact that BEST mediates between the stakeholders through the job fairs organised yearly in technical universities all over Europe.
Local job fairs The world is going faster and faster every day and we, as students of technology, have to keep up with its pace or even take it over. That is why BEST assumed another important mission: that of being a catalyst between universities and companies. By easing this contact, more and more students get the opportunity to taste the real world and also give their input about what they expect when meeting a company. It is a constant exchange that can develop into strong professional relationships, based on mutual respect. The added value of the services offered by BEST is the fact that they are not only job fairs where students visit the stands, but genuine career events. That means that a variety of other activities take place, such as company presentations, case studies, round tables and trainings.
Lodz Porto Skopje
18.-19.4.07 24.5.07 20.-22.3.07
We got in touch with BEST through our sponsorship of PM
Since mid-August I have been recruiting for Schlumberger in
2006 and quickly thereafter became Corporate Partner in
Continental Europe, and one of the organisations I have had
2007. Since then we successfully hired 2 engineers through
the pleasure to work with, has been BEST. It has certainly
BEST. Because Bekaert has a need for engineers in Slovakia
made a difference when you come into a university, to have
we recently started a local partnership with BEST groups in
the help from inside to find the right candidates and ensuring
that area. We look forward to continue our partnership with
the presentations, sessions or events are organised with a
BEST both on an international and a local level.
great amount of effort and pride. Thank you.
Lisa Le Percq
BEST Career Centre BEST Career Centre (BCC) is the on-line meeting point for internationally minded students and companies, an on-line service which extends the face-to-face meetings organised all over the year. After recently undergoing thorough restructuring, BCC has turned into more than a CV and job offer database, being enhanced with a career newsletter, which has proven to be very successful. Fields of study in BEST Career Centre
The CV database of the BEST Career Centre comprises more
Electronics & Telecommunications
Civil Engineering & Architecture
than 8.000 entries of students and graduates from various engineering specialisations and not only. Their point of
Environmental & Chemical Engineering Economics & Management
attraction lies in the interesting career opportunities that our twelve partners and supporters bring into the open: jobs, internships, projects, special programmes. As a newly introduced feature, the career newsletter was a real success, receiving very positive feedback from both students and companies. The more than 15 issues released until now reached the inboxes of over 11.000 students and graduates from all over Europe.
We have been working together with BEST for several years now to promote our Careers in Europe recruitment events, which are internationally focused and 100% pan-European. Each event lasts two days during which more than 1.500 private interviews are held between applicants and recruiters. The Events benefit from very strong marketing campaigns and BEST is positioning itself as a leading European student association, able to present top candidates to the top employers. Next to a strong academic background BEST members also bring along language skills and international experience, which is exactly what the attending companies of our events are looking for. We hope to meet a lot of BEST members at our future events and are looking forward to continue our partnership. Stephane Wajskop Managing Director, Careers in Europe
Live meetings BEST members are, according to our partner companies, ideal candidates for multinational corporations. They do not have the sixth sense, but they do have a lot of well developed skills: leadership, foreign languages and international thoughtfulness are just some of their strengths. What is more, they are willing to travel and work in different environments. Therefore the live meetings are very much appreciated by our partners.
P&G is made up of people, people just like the students who are members of BEST. People drive P&Gâ€™s business growth and success; each person can make a difference. We are looking for talented people who are passionate about innovating and resolute about winning and improving lives. We truly believe in the diversity of our people, this is why we value the cooperation with BEST as a great recruiting pool and as a basis for mutual learning. Through every event organised by BEST that P&G participated in, we met young students who showed the capacity to innovate, who dared to redefine the surrounding environment and proved courage to take decisions and to convert their ideas into action. The pan-European working environment that BEST provides to its members fits very well with the international nature of the P&G work: our employees experience the global temperament of our brands and the constantly changing work environment that only a multinational company can offer. During the past year we tried to build on the cooperation with BEST and transform it into a sustainable relationship. We chose to look at BEST as a partner and not as a recruiting tool - this is why we decided to be more involved and to follow-up the evolution of the organisation and its members closely. We are looking forward to taking the P&G-BEST relationship further and to welcoming more BEST members and students of technology into the P&G world in 2007 and 2008! The BEST Campus Team
Promotion Opportunities come and go, so it is important to be aware of what is out there. Students of technology seek interests, tend to prioritise and have the ability to make a careful selection of choices. As part of the triangle formed by students, universities and companies, BEST promotes the existing opportunities inside companies, providing appropriate solutions to students’ need of self and professional development.
companies who offer a starting point for a future career, it is important to choose the right communication tool. The message presenting such an opportunity must be structured and appealing. While relevant and containing a personal approach, the information included in newsletters addresses a target group. A bidirectional communication process is established when the receiver is accessing the resources presented in the newsletter. So succeeding in the presentation of their offers in an appealing format, the companies reach 11.000 students in a more efficient way.
Website Recognised as an organisation oriented towards student needs and in service of Europe’s technical students’ community, BEST offers its corporate partners the opportunity to present themselves to a group of individuals directly interested by career opportunities and cooperation programs. Our website envelopes communication facilities which include web pages dedicated to our partner companies, providing promotion services, trend analysis and, above all, a solid communication gateway. BEST offers its partners a platform to present themselves on our public website. This includes a detailed profile of each partner, where they can inform students e.g. about their fields of activity and countries of operation. Further, they can post various types of specific offers, such as open jobs, internships or thesis topics. Finally, they can promote their special programs, as case studies, workshops or recruitment programs. Local groups have the possibility to publish their career events they organise on the website. This enables companies to find the promotion means they desire, and initiate cooperation with the organising groups Newsletter statistics
in an easy manner.
Visits in 5 days after
10.613 x 2
Average per month
Average per day
* Data taken for period from January till September 2007
Cooperation with companies BEST has a success story which was only possible with the support and cooperation with strong partners. We have build up long term partnerships with companies and we are learning from each other with every collaboration. Through BEST, companies are able to create bonds with European technology universities and its students which can give some extra value to the organisation.
Shell people aren’t all the same. And we like it like that way. After all, the more different perspectives we have on board, the more great ideas we can come up with. With a presence in more than 130 countries, we’ve learned for ourselves that being an inclusive business is an advantage and that is why we value our partnership with BEST. Shell has developed a deep working relationship with BEST over the years and we have always enjoyed meeting the BEST members through the various activities that we have participated in. Partnership with BEST has a natural fit for Shell as our graduate recruitment strategy has always been focused on attracting the very best technical talent and achieving more together. The nature of the European wide BEST program is a strong fit for Shell and we look forward to continuing our partnership with BEST over the next year. For more information visit shell.com/careers Shell is an Equal Opportunities Employer.
Round Tables Communication and mutual understanding is the recipe for a successful partnership. Therefore BEST is constantly looking to improve the dialog with our partners to strengthen our cooperation. The first BEST Partner’s Round Table was held in Paris where representatives of Procter & Gamble, Shell and Schlumberger, they discussed ongoing partnerships. After the success of this first Round Table the Financial Team of BEST decided to organise a similar event in Turin in the end of January 2007. That time we provided two separate days dedicated either to new prospective partners of BEST or to long-term ones. The representatives of Brose, Microsoft, Electrolux, Procter & Gamble and Alenia Aeronautica appreciated the quality and professionalism of the event and the fruitful discussion shed new light on further cooperation possibilities. The opening day of the 25th General Assembly of BEST, in April 2007, was the perfect opportunity for our partners to express their wish for long term cooperation.
The Round Table in Turin provided an insight into the Europe-
Levels of Partnership
wide structure and the working approach of the dedicated
BEST team. Together with BEST, Brose will be able to approach potential employees who are not only enthusiastic about
competence. Achim Oettinger
Career Support Partner:
At the BEST Round Table in Turin I got to see the BEST leadership in action, giving an overview of the organisation,
their programs and how partners have engaged with them in the past. However, I feel that there is a lot more scope for BEST to leverage industry expertise from Microsoft and other partners.
Project Partner: Harjeet Kumar Microsoft
Microsoft, Careers in Europe