“I have had the opportunity to participate in a wide variety of activities and volunteering, which have completed my experience, making these four years fantastic."
María Ramos de la Flor
María Ramos de la Flor, Spain
- Program studied
Living the IE Experience to the max
María’s reasons for choosing IE University may not be a surprise, given how much she’s enjoyed living in different countries. The most important, she says, is the diversity and mix of cultures in the IE community. This offers her a great opportunity to make connections and build relationships with people from a variety of nations.
She also cites the teaching methodology as a strong influence in her choice. That’s not to say, though, that María’s enjoyment of her time with us has been solely focused on the classroom—she has participated in a wide range of activities and volunteering opportunities as well. The four years have been, she says, “fantastic.”
María certainly feels she has evolved during her time at IE University. She says she has grown personally and professionally, learning the importance of motivation and self-confidence from both faculty and classmates. That has happened despite María deciding to study at IE University at just 16 years old without a clear idea which field most appealed to her, due to her wide range of interests.
So a complete program with interdisciplinary perspectives best suited her, and she chose the Bachelor in Philosophy, Politics, Law and Economics. That way, she was able to connect all of her interests and bring them together with an eye on her future career. She couldn’t be happier, she asserts, with the decision she made.
An important aspect of María’s ongoing happiness with her choice is how rapidly IE University adapted to the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. In the face of considerable uncertainty, the university followed health protocols closely at all times, placing the safety of the IE community above all else.
She’s grateful that the face-to-face classes have been possible, because she feels she retains knowledge more easily if she can interact with professors and classmates. Nonetheless, María’s happy to have enjoyed the hybrid learning experience as well, and the opportunity it afforded her to adapt to different learning methods.
The extracurricular activities that María mentioned have certainly kept her busy, too. Determined to live the IE Experience to its fullest, she has joined a number of clubs, including the Rugby Club, the Debate Club and the Dance Club, which she led for two years. Indeed the Dance Club was the discovery of a new passion. Having been an extremely keen sportswoman throughout her life, competing at a national level in track and field, a knee injury meant she could no longer pursue this at the level she wanted.
After taking up swimming as a sport which did not worsen her knee, she then discovered dance. She’s grateful to the club for the chance to continue sports while she rehabilitated, and she’s still dancing today.
On the professional side, María has worked within various departments of IE University, gaining experience. She has also worked in internal coordination and human resources within the Raia group, and in the trading department of Repsol. No opportunity for new experiences has been turned down!
She has given up some of the little spare time that remains after all these activities to volunteer at the LEAP Conference and the Hay Festival, as well as working alongside the UNWTO thanks to our Policy Lab. Somehow, she also found time to be both a mentee and a mentor to other students, which she says has improved her teamwork and leadership skills.
Perhaps her desire to give back has been prompted by the help she’s received from IE University. While these experiences have certainly been enriching for her, María is also keen to point out that every member of the community, from professors to staff, have helped her with any questions or doubts she may have had, and done so quickly.
Looking to the future, María wants to follow a path that allows her to apply the knowledge she has gained in her bachelor’s program. She’s attracted to foreign affairs, including trade, as it offers her the chance to apply what she’s learned in a variety of ways.
Her philosophy for life is: “If you want something you never had, you have to do something you have never done.” Hearing about everything she’s done in her time with IE University, it’s clear that this is much more than just an empty phrase to her—it’s something she lives and breathes.