The GEMBA is not simply a programme. It is a worldwide community held together by very strong bonds. Although the GEMBA is part-time and modular, each class fuses rapidly into a tight-knit group because of the intensity of the experience, the shared learning and, particularly, the Leadership Development Programme.
During the programme
The GEMBA experience includes an intense and varied social life, not unlike the INSEAD MBA programme. It’s hard to generalise, as social events vary from campus to campus and from class to class, but there are organised dinners during each module and official social committees for each section, as well as ample opportunities for informal socialising. Events range from the casual (networking sessions over burgers in Fontainebleau) to the exotic (desert safaris and camp fires in Abu Dhabi).
After the programme
After graduation, classmates tend not only to stay in touch but also to organise worldwide social events, such as skiing holidays or city breaks. The connections between GEMBA alumni and current classes are also unusually close, as past participants can come back to join the Elective Courses in Fontainebleau every year. Many of them attend these electives, eager to see old friends, make new ones and learn together. Once again, this shared learning results in stronger relationships than could be forged by an ordinary reunion.