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Diego Gárate Arias

Alumni Story

I’m Chilean, and my professional career has been in Latin America. I started as a management consultant in a local firm in Santiago. Then I moved to the industrial sector to work in the biggest private mining group in Chile, where I have worked in different roles and positions nationwide. I always have been passionate about new topics, and my internal driving has been looking for new challenges rather than being an expert in a specific domain. That’s why I studied for this master’s, to strengthen my digital competencies for the new coming unique challenges for the world and society.

Project Leader



Program studied

MBD 2021


Define your experience in MBD in one word.

In what ways do you think the program has changed your life professionally and personally?
The program allows me to understand data and technology with a holistic approach. Once you finish the program, you have a general understanding of all aspects of data and technology; the course content includes the technical perspective (including big data architecture, cloud technologies, machine learning, and AI) and the link of these topics with business strategy and ethics. This holistic approach allows me to understand and be more aware not only in terms of profitability but also of the impact on all the edges.

Personally, the program allows you to discover Madrid, which is a great city with an active social life, restaurants, and open places to practice sports, which is one of my favorite activities. Also, you become part of a community of passionate people with great ideas and vision, pushing me to move out of my comfort zone and think more globally.

What has been your favorite memory of your experience?
My favorite experience was working in Capstone during the final term. This was the final project of the master’s that consisted of working in groups with a real case problem from a selected company.  We worked with an aircraft company to develop a machine learning solution to detect fuel leaks.

What I liked the most was that I worked with a very diverse enthusiast workgroup with students from different backgrounds and nationalities and a dedicated mentor from the company.

I enjoyed exchanging ideas and trying to push innovative solutions in a motivating environment; we were dedicated to having good results and having a lovely time by knowing more about each other. As a result of this process, we finally ended up as the best capstone project from the master.

Why did you choose to study this program at IE?
Based on my professional background, I looked for a program that could combine business and technical aspects. I choose this program at IE because it fits very well with that vision.

What were some of the main challenges you encountered on your way? How did your master’s program and IE help you through these challenges?
In my case, I started my master’s after several years of professional experience and without living outside of my country. Initially, one main challenge was getting familiar with the city and the environment. IE supported me by giving me all the necessary information to start live in Madrid.

Then, during the development of my master I had to deal with understanding technical concepts about big data and analytics. In this context, professors were always open to support and guidance.

Another significant challenge was to think about the future and design a career plan. To solve this, IE provided a dedicated career service with a group of professionals that helped to solve questions and provide guidance for all the aspects of my career plan.

What is networking like in MBD?
It’s unique. From the first day of the master’s, you are in contact with an extensive community. Networking goes beyond getting in touch with people from university; it’s discovering people with similar interests or paths to you and could help you develop your vision and professional projects.