25 Years at IMI

12 May 2022

It's an incredible milestone for IMI's Registrar Mr. Ferry who celebrated his 25th anniversary at the school this month...

How did you first start your career at IMI?

I came to Switzerland after I got married to my wife Ira Fitriana Buerki-Argadinata and I had a plan at that time to work at the Indonesian Embassy in Bern. However, I was having to wait as the Embassy didn’t have any job vacancies at that time and, during that period, Mr. and Mrs Buerki asked me to work at IMI. That is how my story at the school began.

What were your first impressions of the school?

Well, I graduated from a public university in Indonesia with a major in economics, so the world of private hospitality education in Switzerland was all quite new to me. However, my first impressions of IMI were very positive as a small institution with many students from different nationalities. I immediately recognised that IMI took care of every student individually which was very different from my experience while studying in Indonesia.

How has your role at the school developed over the years?

I started off working at the school's reception in Hotel Waldstätten in Weggis which was one of IMI's first campuses in April 1997. I was there for three years before moving to the new Kastanienbaum campus in 2000 where I initially continued to work as a receptionist. In 2002, I became the Assistant Registrar for the school before being appointed as the Registrar five years later - the role in which I have remained until this day.

And how do you feel IMI as a school has changed over the past 25 years?

Many things have changed but the school's strong commitment to academic excellence and care and support for each individual student have remained a constant during my time at IMI. Of course, we have developed and expanded our facilities over the years and I now use a computer much more than dealing with paperwork (laughs). What I feel is very positive is that the school has always kept up with developments in the hospitality industry to ensure that each new generation of students is fully prepared to be successful after graduating from IMI.

What, in your opinion, makes IMI such a special place to work?

IMI is a small institution and, for me, this is one of our greatest strengths. I think of all of my fellow staff members as a part of the family of IMI. Having these strong personal relationships gives me more flexibility to do my work as each staff member is always willing to go the extra step to help their colleagues. I think this is probably rarer in bigger schools or companies as it is hard to form such close and efficient working relationships.

What is your favourite memory from the previous 25 years at IMI?

(Laughs) Wow, I have so many great memories from my 25 years working at IMI and it is very difficult to choose just one! For me, the International Night events where we celebrate our students' cultural traditions have always been very special and I remember one where one of our former students Sari Arab was doing a comedy routine. Sari was from Lebanon and he was joking about how it could be difficult for him to get a study visa. He mentioned my name and how I had helped him with the process and it gave me a great feeling as it combined so many of my favourite things about the school - my role in helping the students and seeing our students succeed both in the classroom and in their personal development! As I said before, the family atmosphere at the school is always in my mind - whether it is staff or students - we all support and take care of each other and that is what makes IMI so special and unique.

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