First Impression

3 Sep 2013 | by Spencer Ong


It has been about two weeks since my arrival at Les Roches University. Google images of Switzerland and the minimal amount of information I decided to indulge myself in from the school’s website was about the extent of my knowledge before arrival. That is my personality though; I am patient to learn about a location until it is right in front of me. Prospective students interested in knowing details about campus and its surrounding area, this is for you.

Things You Might Not Know
The first few days are meant to let you settle in, meet new people, and explore nearby places. The current student body consists of 1,300 students, a community where familiar faces are seen everywhere you go. The campus encompasses nearly all of Bluche, a village mainly owned by the university yet inhabited by locals as well. Sierre is the closest major city, which is a 15 minute funicular ride down through vineyards.


One funicular stop up the mountain are neighboring villages, Crans and Montana. These are areas where many leisure travelers go for vacation, because it is known for its elite ski resort. While Crans Montana is busiest during the wintertime, there are several warm weather activities, including golf, dining, and simply absorbing the culture that makes it a vacationer’s favorite during the summertime as well.

Students are encouraged to visit other cities when possible since Switzerland’s central location is convenient for experiencing various European cultures.

When staying local, however, most students enjoy a weekend tradition where their evening begins socializing at a couple of campus bars. Then they migrate to another bar in Crans, whereafter, they dance in two night clubs until the early morning. While some locals may not be fond of this Les Roches takeover, everyone seems to have an amazing time.

On A Serious Note
Les Roches is a university with a purpose to prepare its students for work in the hospitality world. With that said, it is strict, naturally causing students to complain. For example, one of the biggest complaints is the fact that no cell phones are permitted in an eating area. Reminiscing on previous jobs, I would text on my cell phone during lunch breaks instead of socializing with my peers. This is not acceptable if you want to become a manager. If you can understand this concept of professionalism, then you are ready for this school.

As an MBA student, I am to set the example for all others. MBA is the highest level of education at Les Roches, so the faculty expect us to carry ourselves at our best. We are to walk and talk as if a CEO of a major company was around campus scouting for new employees to hire.

The Goal
Each professor has their own method for educating, and thus far, all are excellent at the subject they teach. Their goal is to prepare us for the working world in management positions, where we will constantly face difficult decisions. Some will even make us feel uncomfortable in order to challenge our confidence. We will be both embarrassed and stressed, which is why we are here, to overcome our weaknesses now so we will know how to prevent showing them in the future.

Spencer Ong


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