PERSERVERANCE and dedication made Rudi Ramin the first Filipino valedictorian of the Executive Master’s in Business Administration (EMBA) degree of the Institut Européen d’Administration des Affaires (INSEAD) business school in Singapore.

Before topping his class at INSEAD, Ramin earned his accountancy degree magna cum laude at the old College of Commerce and Accountancy.

“I made sure I am putting solid building blocks to achieve my dream and one of which is going back to school and having the patience to put a lot of effort in my career,” he said.

Ramin now works for Singapore-based Google Asia-Pacific as its brand solutions expert.

Continuous development

Ramin was advised by his UST High School teachers to become a certified-public-accountant lawyer.

As soon as he finished his undergraduate studies in UST in 2000, he was recognized as the Most Outstanding Accounting Graduate in the Philippines.

After a few months in the profession, Ramin later realized that accountancy was not for him.

“When I finished [studying] and got my license, I worked in an auditing firm,” he said. “After some time, I decided it was something which I didn’t want to do, so I tried to apply for different marketing roles because my parents worked in an advertising agency and they said I should try it.”

In 2002, Ramin worked for Unilever as a brand assistant for Lipton and later rose up the corporate ladder, where he became the brand development manager of Savoury Southeast Asia for Unilever Asia Private Limited.

It was not until 2008 that Ramin, with his son Zach and wife Grace, decided to move to Singapore, where he was promoted as the company’s senior brand development manager.

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“I feel it was a huge sacrifice for my wife because she chose to follow my path even though she was already doing good in her career,” Ramin said. “She does great at her job, but she also takes care of her family well. She is [indeed] a superwoman.”

After three years, Ramin decided to transfer to Mondel?z International as Regional Marketing Manager.

Realizing that a lot of employees in the company already had a Master’s degree in Business Administration, he was determined to tread the same path because for him, acquiring education well is the key to be a good leader.

That was when Ramin chose to take up an EMBA program at INSEAD, one of the world’s leading and largest graduate business schools, because of the diverse cultural background of its students.

“Being a Thomasian made it easy for me to blend in withdifferent kinds of community because the Thomasiancommunity is also diverse.

He bested 157 individuals, who all comprised the Global EMBA Class of 2014, and was named the batch valedictorian.

Pursuing his EMBA was no easy task for Ramin as he had to juggle his time with his family and his job as regional manager, which required him to travel to different places and work ten hours a day.

Ramin, being experienced in digital marketing, was exposed to different technological companies and later onsought new opportunities at Google, which was on top of his list.

His career made a swerve when he took a huge leap from consumer industry to technological industry, where he was compelled to acquaint himself with new practices, different from what he came to know.

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For Ramin, the most important thing that he learned from his experience is to continuously redevelop oneself.

“Take charge of your own development because you don’t have to rely on your company or anyone else to improve yourself,” he said. “If it means taking up another class or learning a new language, do it.” Jelina Anne S. Bunagan

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