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Covid-19: Measures for our students

Grenoble Ecole de Management is very much present in Asia with students in Singapore, students on exchange programs, double-degrees, faculty, and recruitment offices in the region etc. 

As of February, GEM asked all students and staff-members not to travel to China and demanded that those already in China travel back to their respective home-countries: we put in place custom-made programs for students coming back from Asia and for students with canceled exchange programs/internships. The first online-classes were set-up in direct response to the crisis.

The GEM Digital Learning Center (DLC) at the forefront

The DLC offered solutions to faculty in easing the transition to distance-learning formats of all their classes. This team of 7 consultants and pedagogical engineers – all digital learning experts – supports the development of the faculty body's digital practices and teaching. The DLC team receives support itself from the Information Systems department (in terms of network solutions and training to use the Teams tool) and from seven expert faculty members.

Classes on-hold in order to best prepare the online offer 

On March 11th, GEM decided to put on-hold most of its teaching for a period of three weeks, starting on March 16th. Work/Study programs have, on the other hand, not been discontinued.  The institution opted to take this break to allow faculty to rethink their classes on-line and make the switch to synchronous or asynchronous remote sessions. This break would have coincided with a week's holiday (including the GEM Altigliss Challenge) and the Geopolitics Festival week, during which class schedules are usually adapted to allow students to attend conferences.
As well as being regularly in contact with their program director, all students received messages with practical advice on how to make the most of this time "off", learn best practices in distance learning, and continue to remotely use all the school's services. The following resources were made available:

  • A special "Geopolitics" program, consisting of content gradually made available on the library's website and registration to GEM's "Global Studies" MOOC (Certification).
  • A "Coding" MOOC, supervised by GEM Professor Marc Humber (110 students enrolled).

Specific Covid-19 communication channels in French and English

Groups dedicated to students were set up on Yammer and Teams. Students can ask questions and be informed day by day on the latest developments globally and the impacts the situation can have on their daily-lives and their training program: tuition, internships, repatriations, organization of the year to come, work/study training…These groups allow to secure a strong link with the students, even remotely. Particular attention is paid to international students who stayed in France and can't be with their families. A specific English-speaking group was set-up to support them on a daily basis.

April 6th marked the start of the 100% online classes

As of April 6th, all training programs are now 100% online.
The training that was interrupted has been rescheduled. The synchronous or asynchronous remote sessions (via webinars or video conferences) are delivered respecting the initial timetable. Resources are available on Moodle and interaction is made possible via the Teams, Adobe Connect or Moodle tools. The tools allow faculty members to ask for papers to be handed in during sessions, to take part in discussions with the students as if they were all in the same classroom.
Internships and work/study programs are maintained when public health measures are met. The minimal required length has been reviewed and it has been decided that not having carried out an internship is no longer detrimental to the student's academic success.  Exams will be replaced by an end of year assessment to be carried out in a limited amount of time via multiple-choice questionnaires, written and oral evaluations.
The aim is for students to profit from the same content, knowledge and skills that they would have acquired without the Covid-19 crisis.

Maintained student services in a digital format / services and tools dedicated to the crisis

Services listed on the dedicated Covid-19 page on the student intranet, include:

  • NEW: "GEM Care line for me", a psychological support unit (in 14 different languages) and healthcare teleconsultation services (in 5 languages). All GEM students have access to these two free and confidential services 24/7. 60 doctors can advise, guide, reassure, explain treatment, determine a diagnosis and send out a prescription.
  • A 100% virtual library experience with online training, support helpline for online searches (also available via instant messaging) and dedicated resources on the geopolitics impact of the Covid-19 crisis. Access to many online content and databases has been expanded
  • The Center for Personal and Managerial Development (CDPM) and the Career Center: Students still receive support and guidance in further developing their skills, professional projects, choice of internship, getting their first job, getting help to write a quality CV and cover letter, as well as to draw-up a successful job hunt strategy.
  • A Career Statistics Barometer to provide continued support to the last graduating cohorts: During this economic crisis, fresh graduates are strongly impacted with the job market expected to remain under pressure. This was the case during the latest crises in 2008, 2000 and 1992. This COVID pandemic is a crisis of a new kind. Whereas in the advent of the lockdown several companies withdrew or put on hold internships and job offers, some sectors continue to hire and are still keen on attracting talent. In order to understand what GEM students are going through on a daily-basis, the institution launched a career statistics barometer based on the latest graduating cohorts. This will allow to adjust when needed the support and guidance to young graduates when looking for their first employment. The first results came out in early May, and the barometer will be repeated at the end of June and end of September in order to measure, over time, career statistics developments.
  • 12 virtual recruitment fairs by topic in collaboration with EFMD started on April 28th. The lockdown radically changed the recruitment process. With face-to-face meetings being forbidden, recruiters turned to video interviews and virtual assessment centers. In partnership with EFMD, Grenoble Ecole de Management is launching 12 virtual recruitment fairs between the end of April and early June, aimed at its French and international students and graduates. These forums are available in EMEA and  APAC and cover a range of sectors from consulting to luxury, biotech and e-commerce.

Applicants can browse the job listings, meet recruiters by chat and secure interviews without leaving their homes. To best prepare them, the school supports candidates through webinars, online interview tools, and personality, motivation & logical reasoning tests.