Congratulations to this year’s summer graduates

On Friday, 30 June, we celebrated 110 graduates who completed their HD, Bachelor of Engineering and master’s degree programmes. American Emily Theriot gave this year’s graduation speech, and she, among other things, talked about how studying at AU Herning has surprised her in the best possible way and taken her out of her comfort zone.

Emily Theriot gave the summer graduation speech.
The award for best master’s thesis on cand.merc. and (ITKO) went to Helle Berg Christensen and Kamilla Borup Mikkelsen. They both studied cand.merc. and have written the thesis together.
Line Theilgaard Hansen was awarded the prize for best master’s thesis on the cand.polyt.

The bright, open canteen at AU Herning was beautifully decorated, and the air was buzzing with happy and relieved graduates who, together with family, friends and employees from AU Herning, could celebrate the end of several years of study and mark the closing of a major chapter in their lives.

Emily Theriot, who recently graduated with an MSc in Engineering (Technology Based Business Development), gave this year’s graduation speech. Among other things, she used the opportunity to share the experiences she will take with her from her time as a student – in her own words, hoping to inspire the attendees if they at some point decide to take a new path in life. Because that’s what Emily did when she moved from the US to Denmark two years ago. It was a big step out of her comfort zone when she clicked “apply” to the study programme in Herning – in a new country and with no fixed timeline. She quoted photographer and podcaster Gina Milicia for the following:

“A comfort zone is a beautiful place, but nothing ever grows there.” Emily then continued her speech with the words:

“Throughout our academic journey, we have learned the importance of stepping outside what is known to us, and it is in those moments of unfamiliarity that we truly discover our hidden potential. For myself, I have found that the smaller moments, like trying an oral exam for the first time, have made it easier to say yes to bigger ones. I thoroughly believe that new experiences create positivity in our lives, whether by helping us acquire more open-mindedness or agility for, as we especially know, the world around us is never still for long.”

Stepped out of her comfort zone and was surprised
When she stepped out of her comfort zone and started her studies at AU Herning, she was surprised by one thing in particular.

“ … The spark of creativity and inspiration is very much alive here at AU Herning. It is a smaller school than where I went for my bachelor’s, but the amount of concentrated critical thinking and innovation honestly surprised me. Students all around me are engaging, challenging, and having vibrant conversations about the future. It has inspired me to be a better student and to follow in my classmates’ steps to be an intellectual explorer filled with curiosity. So even if we leave this university, let us keep this conversation going”, she said.

Emily ended by thanking all those – both on and off campus – who have helped her and the other graduates throughout their studies. And then she concluded with the following call to action to her fellow graduates:

“As we celebrate our achievement today, we should also remember that our education has given us a unique skillset and knowledge towards shaping industries, businesses and driving innovation. Each of us has the capacity to pioneer and trailblaze for a better future. The world is waiting for us, and I have no doubt that we can rise to the occasion.”


This year’s awards
Diplomas were handed out to graduates, and the following awards were given to three students who have excelled during their studies.

  • Best masters thesis on cand.merc. and (ITKO):
    Helle Berg Christensen (cand.merc.) and Kamilla Borup Mikkelsen (cand.merc.)

    Title: “The retention of employees in Skatteforvaltningen”.
    Sponsor: Hans Foxbys Fond/Kyocera Unimerco.
  • Best masters thesis on cand.polyt.:
    Line Theilgaard Hansen

    Title: “Optimizing the Physical Product Development Process and Project Management by implementing an Agile-Stage-Gate Hybrid – the thesis was conducted at Beumer Group A/S.
    Sponsor: SMV Herning.

This year’s keynote speaker was Rasmus Budde, Production Manager at Trehøje Døre A/S – he has previously, like Emily Theriot, studied MSc in Engineering at AU Herning.

The 110 graduates are distributed across the following study programmes:

  • Bachelor of Engineering in Business Development, BDE
  • Bachelor of Engineering in Global Management and Manufacturing Networks, GMM
  • Master of Science (International Business Development)
  • (IT, Communication and Organisation)
  • Cand.polyt. (Technology Based Business Development)
  • HD


Photos from the day: Ebenezer Fiifi Smith.