IM Medley: Info on AI for businesses + an apero

So is AI something for my organisation? (Photo: http://freedomandsafety.com/en/file/ai-businessjpg)

Combine gaining some insights into current business topics with socialising and networking.

On 22 February, from 6pm, Prof Dr Kaspar Riesen presents a dynamic mini-lecture on Artificial Intelligence (OVR building, Campus Olten. Room  OVR A013 ). An apero follows.

Big data and machine learning has been on everyone’s lips lately, and many companies are wondering if and, most importantly, how these topics could be used to their advantage. In this mini lecture, the topics of machine learning and artificial intelligence are vividly presented and possibilities and limitations of this specific field of research are discussed, including some case examples from current consultancy.

Kaspar Riesen, IT-consultant and lecturer (Photo: © Adrian Moser)

Kaspar Riesen received his MSc and PhD degrees in Computer Science from the University of Bern in 2006 and 2009, respectively. His research interests cover the fields of artificial intelligence, pattern recognition, machine learning and data mining. Kaspar Riesen is the author of two unique books that present thorough introductions to the field of structural pattern recognition. Moreover. his list of publications includes 17 papers in international peer-reviewed journals and more than 50 publications in refereed conference proceedings and edited books. Since 2010 Kaspar Riesen works as a university lecturer and researcher at the University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland.

Register here now.

Next event:  Bid for a Boss. 12 April from 6pm in Olten.

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Bid redeemed. Robots and Rotkraut

Manuel Frei at the Industrie 4.0 trade fair in Nürnberg

The prize was a trip to Europe’s largest trade fair – Industrie 4.0 – in Nürnberg. CEO and IM alumnus Stephan Kunz offered this at the Bid for a Boss – Manuel Frei placed the winning bid.  The two shared a dinner of Rotkraut and Spätzle the night before  the big day – looks impressive.  We don’t know what Manuel thought of the robot, though.

There will be more such amazing opportunities at next year’s Bid for a Boss. Set for 12 April – so save the date.

Manuel Frei (left) won the bid for CEO (and IM Alumnus) Stephan Kunz’s offer to be taken to Europe’s largest trade fair in Nürnberg.

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#ThrowbackThursday Daniel Altherr

(From left) Flo, Daniel, Stefan and Jan on the “weird but fun” night out in Zürich with a group of BEST tour Californian students in 2007.

In June 2007 about 15 students from CalState Fullerton came to Switzerland as part of the so-called BEST programme run by Robert Buttery, the Head of International Relations.  He asked some of us regular students to take the group out – which we did.  It was a Monday evening and we, Stefan Stöckli, Jan Musar, Flo Estoppey and myself took this group to several bars in Zürich.  Let’s just say it was a weird but fun night with a lot of alcohol.  Which meant that the next day we ended up sleeping on our desks in a classroom as we waited for a lecture to start.

Graduated BSc IM in 2007

Now I’ve been with DePuySynthes, which is part of Johnson&Johnson, for over 8 years now in various roles.  Currently, as EMEA Marketing Manager for the Spine segment, I can profit from knowing the business inside out and the network I’ve built up.  I’m tasked with rationalising the portfolio of 255 products by half. Reducing this number will allow us to focus our R&D efforts on creating innovation instead of keeping old brands updated to comply with the changing regulatory environment. The challenge is to retain our existing customers when removing some of their favourite brands. So I have to keep them and our sales force well informed.  This is such a major project that it’s on our CEO’s scorecard which motivates me even more. My role is very much more about marketing strategy than sales which I enjoy and means I learn something every single day.  Also, importantly, I enjoy that I can have a better work-life balance now that I don’t have to travel so much. I had years when I undertook 70 trips a year.

After Graduation I’d done my semester abroad in Hong Kong and joined the Insight China seminar so a year after graduating I tried working in China. But it was 2008 – I picked the wrong year.  I then returned to Synthes as Product Manager in the Spine unit, which after two years lead to the role of Market Development Manager of the same group in the Middle East and Africa. Especially the Middle East is a vibrant development area in our sector and I travelled a lot. However, after the merger with Johnson&Johnson that business unit became redundant – I then took on the same role but for 13 countries of Eastern Europe and was based in Prague.  This market was expanded to include Neuro – two business units dealing with implants and instruments for brain and skull surgery.  This unit, too, was reorganised last year so after about 4 years in Prague I returned to Switzerland.

How did studying IM help? You know, I was thinking about this recently. In my current job I’m not applying much of the knowledge taught in the courses I took.   But my studies brought me three highly valuable assets. One is that those three years made me an adult, able to work independently and take responsibility. Then, I learnt to present. I developed the skill to stand in front of people and talk about what I know- or sometimes even what I don’t know and to be concise. I need to present every day – to colleagues, to surgeons. And then thirdly, it gave me a valuable network of people including some, like Stefan and Jan, who remain my best friends.

Want to get in touch with Daniel? you’ll find him in the IM Alumni LinkedIn group.

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Bid Redeemed – Innovation Playdate

Monika Blaser (left) took Nikolina Fuduric through the Innovation Lab toolkit at Postfinance which Nikolina had won at the Bid for a Boss event. We’re not sure what the piggy bank is about but looks like they had fun

This week Nikolina Fuduric redeemed her Bid for a Boss win: she and Monika Blaser, Head of the Innovation Lab at PostFinance enjoyed a “playdate” – Nikolina could pitch a business idea they then took through the Lab’s toolkit. “It was a learning experience for me and it was a lot of fun!” reports Nikolina.

The Bid for a Boss event, with the auctioning of various opportunities with bosses from all walks of life, raised over CHF 3000 of which the majority went to the charity C4C which provides laptops and ICT training for youngsters in rural Nigeria.  The event will be held again in April 2018.

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Winning Bid for a Boss – Brussels Lobbying and Beer

Amila Basic (left) and Andrea Häfliger at the European Parliament. The won the “boss” Max de Boer who took them to brussels for two days of lobbying and Belgian beer. Read all about it in the latest edition of The Sextant

Last April one of the star offers at the IM Alumni Bid for a Boss event was the two-day trip to Brussels offered by Max de Boer.  The happy winners were Amila Basic and Andrea Häfliger and in the new edition of The Sextant they themselves report on how that trip went.  Read all about it and other international news nw_sextant_Autumn-2017-MEDIA.

 

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Graduations Galore!!!!!

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UPDATE – Photos now available here
Congratulations to nearly a 100 new IM Alumni

Nearly 100 new IM graduates received their Bachelor diplomas at graduation ceremonies over the past two weekends – this includes nearly 40 “pioneers” who studied at Campus Brugg in either full- or part-time mode.

In Olten the Graduation Ceremony took place on 6 October.  Due to ever-increasing numbers of students studying in English, there is now a ceremony exclusively for those graduating from BSc and MSc English-taught programmes.  Our own IM Alumni Graduation Prize was also awarded – this year’s winner is Umberto Verde who was praised by classmates for initiating many good ideas, being the class rep and “he has invested a lot of his free time for his fellow students and he was always there when you needed help with something. He is a great guy and more than deserves this award.”

In total the graduating classes nominated 10 classmates who they felt deserved the CHF400 prize for contributing to the IM community.  Nominees were: Carolyn Höchle, Tobias Dolenzky, Theo Whitwill, Timo Dätwyler, Leonora Asani, Corinne Köpfli, David Balsiger, Delia Moser, Geoffrey Bauer and Umberto Verde.  The prize money is raised at the Bid for a Boss event.

In Brugg, the ceremony was held on 30 September and  IM graduate Steven Rowntree received the Graduate of the Year prize of CHF 1500.  This was the “pioneering” batch of IM students who began their studies in 2014.

Photos of both ceremonies will soon be available here

 

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Life at the top!

Oezlem Kösker won lunch at the Pebbles Bar at the top of Roche tower. Melanie Auer, Head of Controlling at Roche Pharma, had offered this at the Bid for a Boss charity auction in April.

Oezlem Kösker picked the right day to redeem her Bid for a Boss.  Melanie Auer took her up, as promised, to the Pebbles Bar at the top of Roche tower in Basel.  Melanie reports they had a wonderful time: “It’s great that this way you meet nice people you wouldn’t have met otherwise.”

John Uwaeke’s charity Catalyst4Change has not only profited from the money raised at the charity auction: John reported last week that he received three laptops from one of our alumni.  John will take these to Nigeria in August. “We are in contact with an orphanage home and another rural school in Eastern Nigeria to donate laptops and support the education of motherless children,” John reported.

 

 

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Funds transferred to Catalyst4Change

Lighting up Faces. A group of young pupils get their first peek at the world of computers and the internet. Thanks to John Uwaeke’s two step charity, children in rural Nigeria receive basic training and some of these receive further support to become a trainer themselves. The charity Catalyst4Change also supplies laptops. Want to know more? 

CHF 2000 was transferred to Catalyst4Change this week. IM alumnus John Uwaeke’s charity aims to significantly improve opportunities for children in rural Nigeria by supplying laptops and training in basic IT*.  The IM Alumni Association held a charity auction, Bid for a Boss, in April to support this initiative.

Just over CHF 3000 was raised at the auction where 15 bosses offered an amazing range of opportunities. (We’ll keep reporting on those redeemed bids.)

The remainder of the funds will cover other association events and the IM Alumni Graduation Prize which recognizes the social contributions to the IM community.  IM bachelor students in their 3rd year are currently nominating fellow students who have helped their class, students or the school over the years. The prize is announced and awarded at Graduation (which will be on 6 October this year).

  • If you missed out on the event but want to donate to this good cause you can deposit money in account number 40-000061-4, Basler Kantonalbank, 4002 Basel.  IBAN CH11 0077 0253 5963 8200 1 770.  Aternatively, if you have laptops still in good working order and are willing to donate these, contact John directly.
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Boats, wine, cake, marketing: winning bid redeemed

From left Prof Dr Nikolina Fuduric who offered the outing to winners Enzo Scannella, a visiting professor from  University of Palermo and two visiting students from Mexico Diego Aguilar Ortega and Juan Arellano Mendoza.

A boat ride, sunshine, wine and chatting about marketing – Prof Dr Nikolina Fuduric’s offer at the Bid for a Boss was actually auctioned off twice and raised CHF 440 for C4C. “Winners” were visiting professor Enzo Scannella from partner University of Palermo and then visiting students Diego Aguilar Ortega and Juan Arellano Mendoza from Mexico.

The foursome all reported having a wonderful afternoon with the boat ride, wine, coffee and cake forming a great background to lively and interesting discussion.  The offer was one of 15 up for auction at the Bid for a Boss 2017 event which raised over CHF 3000 for both the C4C charity set up by alumnus John Uwaeke to support children’s education in rual Nigeria and for the IM Alumni Graduation prize.

(In case you were wondering – we hope to forward the funds to C4C within the next days – we were waiting for all the bids made to be paid into our account.)

 

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