The BAM Student Congress: Sharpening the love for the profession

On March 9 another edition of the BAM Student Congress took place, in Bergen this time, and of course CUBE was also closely involved. Why does BAM organize a student congress every year? For whom is it intended? And what was there to experience? Timothy Robeers of B2Sense and CUBE explains.

Every year, the BAM Student Congress is organized in a different city, and this was the first edition in the post-corona era, which made expectations about attendance especially high. Before the pandemic, the congress lured just under 2,000 participants to Leuven, Brussels and Antwerp, among others, and the expectation was that this figure would be reached again this year.

Between morning and lunch, students had presentations from top marketers who shared their experiences and skills with the audience. In the afternoon, they had a choice between visiting local companies, workshops or attending more keynotes. “The purpose of the conference was to put students in close contact with the world of marketing and market research,” explains Timothy Robeers. “We wanted them to connect with industry professionals with whom they could share knowledge. And thus, hopefully, further sharpen their love for the marketing profession.”

Excel sheets

The latter is not unnecessary, Timothy says, especially for the field of market research. “Market research has a bit of a dated, dusty image with many young people. We are too often associated with “calling people unsolicited” and the market researcher himself still has the image of someone who spends all day somewhere in a corner of the company poring over statistics and Excel sheets. This is totally at odds with reality and we would like to make that clear. Even in the current war for talent, it is of course important that students have the best and most realistic picture of our sector.”

At the conference, visitors could expect an inspiring mix of keynote speakers, workshops and presentations. Speakers included specialists from companies such as Publicis, Deloitte and Alken-Maes, and politician Elio Di Rupo was also on stage. The topics addressed were particularly broad. “There were workshops on sustainable tourism, crowdfunding, eco-design, presentations on packaging, … I myself was talking about sustainability, how to deal with it as a company and which frameworks to use. Sustainability probably poped up in a few presentations, because it is of course an unmistakable trend nowadays. Just as for digitalization, for example.”

Those who preferred to get out and about were also in the right place at the congress, because in the afternoon you could visit companies such as bpost, I-Care or Ecosteryl, among others. Another fun fact: the practical organization of the BAM Student Congress was also largely in the hands of students. For this, they called on the bright minds of the Condorcet Hogeschool who took care of the smooth running as part of the Event Marketing course.


Read also: Guest speaker Elio Di Rupo on social networks in political communication (NL version / FR version)