“It’s always the people who make a good place great, and there are some amazing people to be found at IE University.”

Frederique, The Netherlands

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Frederique Haverhals

About me

Originally from the Netherlands, I studied and worked in the US before coming to Madrid. I am a positive and open-minded person, and love meeting new people. I love team sports and even played field hockey professionally. I’ve built great relationships here and everything I’m learning will be useful to me in my new role.
WHO

Frederique Haverhals, The Netherlands

POSITION

Master’s student

Program studied

Master in Finance

Learning to play ball in the finance field

A lover of sports, Frederique calls herself a team player. It was her passion for ball games that helped her finance her undergraduate degree, winning her a field hockey scholarship to study at Boston College in 2015. She also played field hockey professionally back home in the Netherlands last year. You could say she applies the “work hard, play hard” attitude to all aspects of her life!

For her undergraduate, Frederique studied finance and marketing at Boston College, where her scholarship had her playing hockey for the university team. Aged 18 at the time, she had never been to the US before, but she was up for an adventure. After finishing her undergraduate degree, she worked full-time in private wealth management for Deutsche Bank in New York.

In 2020, Frederique moved back to the Netherlands. She was planning to start at IE University that year, but COVID-19 affected her plans and she ended up postponing for a year. During that time, she lived in Amsterdam and completed another master’s degree at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, worked part-time at Aegon Asset Management, and played field hockey professionally for the club HGC. Sitting still and doing nothing clearly does not come naturally to Frederique!

Frederique came to Madrid in August of 2021, having already fallen in love with the city while studying here in the summer. She was attracted to IE University for its reputation, with the Master of Finance in particular being a highly ranked program. She says she liked how the program was very practically oriented rather than just academic, and she was also drawn to the quality of the faculty. This seemed like a great opportunity to learn not just where the formula comes from, but how to apply it in real life. 

She was also interested in the university for its diversity—the young Dutch professional finds it enriching to be around people with different backgrounds and perspectives. “It’s always the people who make a good place great,” she says, “and there are some amazing people to be found at IE University.” She likens her current classroom to the United Nations, saying there’s no place like IE University in that regard!

Academically, Frederique was impressed by her professors’ experience and teaching methods. She says there are lots of opportunities to ask questions, and you’re guaranteed to get an interesting and practical answer. She says that unlike other institutions where teachers might just read from slides copied off a textbook, the teachers here are here to really teach you something and provide you with the tools you will use in your professional life. 

Frederique knew the program to be competitive, and the athlete in her rose to the challenge. According to Frederique, you have little time to do a lot of work, which means you have to choose your battles and prioritize—just like in real life. Having balanced an athletic career with her studies, she was no stranger to this concept! 

The Master in Finance provides a holistic understanding of all parts of the industry, Frederique explains, which will definitely influence her success in the field. You get to have a taste of everything, allowing you to explore your own interests, while still becoming fluent in all aspects of the industry. All of this is imperative to having a successful career in finance.

After graduation, Frederique will be working in private wealth management at JP Morgan in Amsterdam. She says she really enjoys this type of work, which is what she was doing in New York too. She calls it the perfect hybrid between having the intellectually challenging and dynamic aspect of the financial sector, while dealing with individuals rather than institutions. It is a business very much based on building relationships, and the person-focused aspect of the business is very attractive to her.

Frederique’s advice to future students? Take a moment to reflect on what you’re doing to form a bigger picture. You will get so much more out of every assignment when you see it as not just an activity in and of itself, but as a step toward the end goal. Questioning what you’re working on helps in the long run: when you understand what you’re working towards, even the less enjoyable assignments will be more inspiring and you will get much more out of them.

Frederique had one final piece of advice for Master in Finance students: recognize your own strengths and weaknesses. The program is broad, and when you utilize your own strengths as well as your team’s, you see where you can improve.