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How a pre-master’s can prepare you for master’s success

We spoke with Karthik Natesan, a current master’s student in the Netherlands, to hear about his time at Nyenrode Business University and how their pre-masters helped him prepare for his full-time master's and integrate into Nyenrode’s close community.

In short

Karthik Natesan (India) - Nyenrode MSc

What led you to the Netherlands?

I did my bachelor’s in Mechanical Engineering and then wanted to pursue a career in management, so I decided to study a master’s in management. For me, the master’s was also all about my exposure that I’m going to get, so I thought Europe would be the best place to go [because] I can go to different countries very easily.

So I decided on Europe and then when I was looking into which country particularly to study, I thought the Netherlands would be the best because almost everyone can speak really good English over here. And then it wouldn’t be much trouble for me to integrate initially. (00:05)

What does the class profile look like?

It’s mostly made up of Dutch students, but we still have a really good mix of international students. We have people from Germany, Russia, Taiwan, India…I actually thought it would be more like an MBA program where there are more older people than us, but the age group would be between 24 and 27 over here. It was good, actually, to be in a group of people who are almost the same age as me. (00:52)

Describe "the Nyenrode experience" to us.

The Nyenrode experience is about campus life. Over here we are like a really small village inside the campus; it’s a really close community, something is happening all the time. (02:45)

It’s always happening – you almost know everyone on campus and everyone knows what’s going on on campus. It’s a really close community and that is what “the Nyenrode experience” is all about. (03:32)

You mentioned that you studied a "pre-master’s" together with your master’s degree. What exactly is a "pre-master’s"?

The MSc at Nyenrode is mainly for people who do not have a business background. So a pre-master’s is like an equivalence course where you learn basic subjects like business statistics, foundations of finance, and managerial economics. I think it would be really necessary if you haven’t had any business experience before. (09:34)

Also, during the pre-master’s you get used to the Nyenrode rules and regulations, for instance how to write an assignment at Nyenrode and what they expect from you in terms of writing. (10:24)

It is always good to go for the pre-masters because a lot of things are happening then. People integrate at that time. I’ve had students who came in January and said that they have had a bit more trouble than us to integrate, because things have already been set and people already know each other. (09:00)

What are your plans for after graduation? Is it easy to stay in the Netherlands after graduating?

My plan personally is that I want to work in Europe for at least two to three years. It doesn’t matter which country; I’m ready to go wherever work calls me.

It’s easy for students to stay in the Netherlands because as I said, the number of people who speak English over here is much higher compared to any other country in Europe. (11:27)

What are your plans for after graduation? Is it easy to stay in the Netherlands after graduating?

It’s been a really good journey over here at Nyenrode, I’ve made a lot of friends who I know are going to be friends for life. That is one thing for sure that you will get out of Nyenrode. [It] is really important because I think that is the point for anyone traveling to different countries to study. You don’t want to be in the same bubble as you were in your country, so you come here for the exposure, for the people you meet, the culture you’re going to experience. 

Nyenrode, with its student association and the activities that happen on campus, definitely makes sure that you experience it (university life). That would be the unique selling point of Nyenrode. (12:03)

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