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Graduation Celebration for FIFA Master 12th Edition Class
In the beautiful surroundings of the Chateau of Neuchâtel with views high above the lake, the 12th edition FIFA Master class received their degree certificates at a special graduation ceremony on Friday 20th July 2012.

President of the CIES and Executive Board Mr Bertrand Reeb welcomed the 12th edition graduating class, friends and family for this truly special occasion. This was the moment that the 29 international postgraduates had been waiting for since the start of the programme at De Montfort University in Leicester the previous September.

The ceremony is a celebration of the hard work and achievements of the class over the previous ten months and also a time to reflect on the unique journey that has been undertaken and the new life long friendships that have been made.

Patricia Gacond, Head of the Sports Department of the Canton of Neuchâtel and the official representative of the Government of the Canton of Neuchâtel was introduced by the CIES President to the packed gallery for her welcoming address.

Professor Tony Collins, Director of the International Centre for Sports History and Culture and official representative of De Montfort University in the United Kingdom next spoke of the importance of leadership and determination as the class begin their international careers in sport.

Professor Gianfranco Piantoni, official representative of the SDA Bocconi School of Management followed with a speech on the value of teamwork and the importance of continuing to adapt to the challenges of modern life.

Professor Philippe Terrier, Vice Rector of the Université de Neuchâtel addressed the graduating class before the degree ceremony welcomed Mr Markus Kattner – the Deputy General Secretary of FIFA and the official representative of FIFA to the lectern. Mr Kattner spoke of the importance of well qualified sporting administrators and congratulated the class on their hard work at the three partner universities.

The CIES was delighted that Mr Kattner was able to join the graduation celebrations.

Following a musical interlude and talk from the FIFA Master alumni association, Professor Denis Oswald introduced the 2011 – 2012 course patron, the former Great Britain triple jump Olympic Champion Jonathan Edwards CBE.

Unfortunately, due to his London 2012 Olympic commitments, Jonathan was unable to join the graduation celebrations but was able to send a special video message to the class. Speaking from the London Olympic Park, Jonathan expressed his sincere congratulations and spoke of his meeting with the class the previous December.

The CIES would like to express their thanks to Jonathan for his support and contribution over the past year to the FIFA Master programme.

Following each student receiving their degree certificate from Professor Oswald and Mr Kattner, the 12th edition class representative Robert Swain gave a tribute to his class colleagues and spoke of the memories that will never be forgotten.

Closing the ceremony, the CIES President thanked the work of the course Scientific Committee and administration team at the three partner universities before inviting the new graduates to continue their celebrations with friends and family at the awaiting cocktail aperitif in the courtyard of the Chateau.

The CIES, De Montfort University, SDA Bocconi School of Management and the Université de Neuchâtel all congratulate the 12th edition class on the award of their degree certificates.

We wish you every success in your chosen careers!

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