Schaufelberger Consulting LLC
As I was interested in pharmacy, ETH was a top choice for my studies, and I was looking for something with a sound scientific basis: I got into science and wanted to a PhD. I followed that by going to UNIL in Lausanne, after which I ended up at Arizona State University. That was the start of 30 years of my life in the US, focusing on research and new product development. But I should add that I met my wife at ETH, so it is a special place to me.
At the start of my life as an ETH student, I was scared; sitting with 400 students in a lecture hall was intimidating. I was not prepared; I was not sure that I belonged here… I didn’t know for a long time if I was good enough. For this reason, the Mentoring Pilot Programme started by the ETH Circle and AVETH in 2021 is an incredibly important project. I welcome the opportunity of sharing my experience and advice with current students in a safe space, in a constructive way. I also got involved early on in helping set up the US chapters of the ETH Alumni Association. It’s wonderful to be able to give back in these ways to an institution I admire.
ETH is the Swiss MIT. But I would like to be able to say: the MIT is the American ETH. What is ETH? What does ETH represent in the US? In my experience, I’ve found that it’s well-known in the academic world, but then it disappears when it comes to the general public… There is a gap between the rankings and the brand recognition in the US. We need to work on this, because for those who are looking for jobs, regular graduates, it puts them at a disadvantage. The ETH Circle is the most powerful vehicle to achieve these goals. Thanks to the diversity and the global reach of our network, out-of-the-box, blue-sky thinking and discussions at a high intellectual level are a very powerful tool.
Science needs freedom and space to express, to try; and a democratic base where opinions are respected, and thinking can be challenged. We have too many trends against that currently. There are major threats out there, and as a Swiss federal university with a democratic tradition, we should share this model, highlight its value, and showcase why this freedom is so important. I think ETH and others who have that freedom can step up and be ambassadors for our values.
Luca Di Tizio
Mulan Sun Buschor
Felix Seidel Caprez