Studying auditing and management accounting while keeping up with the intense training schedule of an elite fencer is no mean feat. But that is the challenge Romain Cannone has set himself. In 2019, the 24 year old champion enrolled at SKEMA to study for an MSc in Auditing, Management Accounting & Information Systems. According to programme director Kirsty Paoli, he is just a short step from succeeding in his challenge. "Romain just has to complete one course, plus his dissertation on treasury and management," she said. "He's expected to take his viva exam in December."
Whatever it takes
Thanks to a flexible timetable and tailored support from SKEMA, Romain has been able to study for his MSc in the same way as other students despite all the demands on him. "Over the last few months, he has been living in Brazil with his parents. So he's been studying remotely. The time difference meant he had to log in at 4am, and that is what he did. It wasn't easy for him, he was attending lectures in the morning and then training in the afternoon," said Ms Paoli.
Just one of the guys
Romain is a highly committed and fiercely determined student, as this anecdote proves. Despite the geographical constraints, the pandemic and preparation for the Olympic Games, he made it a point of honour to complete his three-month final year placement with "Sport Heroes", a startup in the sports sector, just like his peers. This demonstrates his determination to complete everything he starts. "He's bursting with energy and he's nice with it. All the other students in the year admired him. He was always pleasant to them, and to the lecturers too. He's very friendly," said Ms Paoli.
In 2020, when the Tokyo Olympic Games were postponed, Romain had to find a way to stay on track despite the immense disappointment. "He didn't lose his enthusiasm. We rallied round to support him and keep him motivated to continue his studies." And it worked. Romain's overall average grade is 13.6 out of 20!