Mathias took a bachelor’s in his free time: “I needed to challenge myself.”

When 31-year-old Mathias Kallan from Kolding looks back over his schedule for the last few months, he finds there was no shortage of challenges.

At the beginning of January, everything was full speed ahead for getting a new transport terminal open in Taulov. There, he has responsibility for a newly-established team of six employees, who ensure that all goods leave the terminal on time and headed for the correct destination - from the 7,000 m2 centre which logistics company DB Schenker has chosen to place here. 50 trucks operate out of Mathias’s department.

Read the story in danish.

International Business - online

  • Online, you have up to six years to complete a part-time study programme in International Business.
  • The programme, offered by IBA in collaboration with Leeds Beckett University in the UK, focuses on the complex challenges of working within an international environment.
  • Amongst other things, the courses centre around finance, communication and management.
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“I was never a great student at school - in fact rather the opposite. But now I’m older, and have felt ready for further studies at this level,” says Mathias Kallan, who has completed a bachelor’s in International Business.

The entire launch has happened at the same time as he’s been taking an online study course towards a bachelor’s (BA) in International Business, at the International Business Academy in Kolding - a programme which was reaching its conclusion in parallel with the initial opening weeks of the terminal in Taulov. He passed the English-language study course with ‘First Class Honours’, which is the equivalent of a grade 12 in Denmark.

Mathias doesn’t hide the fact that completing the studies alongside his full-time work was a big deal.

“During the launch of our terminal, I spent around 70-80 hours a week on job and studies combined. Sometimes it took a bit longer than I expected; but on the other hand, I feel it was a good way to build character. It shows some discipline at least; as well as demonstrating what you can achieve if you’re prepared to work for it,” says the newly-certified bachelor.

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The new Taulov branch, where Mathias is employed as senior manager, is part of DB Schenker’s European network, connecting their 430 existing land transport locations across Europe with an advanced production system, designed to meet the growing demand for cross-border transport.  From here, goods will be distributed to over 38 European countries daily.

Champagne and applause

He is very happy that when his studies were complete, it was noticed and celebrated by his workplace.

“After I’d been to the final spoken exam, I was greeted with applause at work, and our managing director was there and gave me a huge clap on the shoulder. I also got a bottle of champagne to take home. I’ve received many positive comments from colleagues and others, so my feeling is definitely that this is an achievement which will open new doors for me,” says Mathias.

He also has an education in marketing management under his belt - again from IBA - and has previously worked as a manager at the transport company DHL Freight, before he switched to DB Schenker. Earlier, he had begun to educate himself in his free time.

“I could feel that I needed to challenge myself,” says Mathias, who jumped at the chance when he noticed it was possible to take a bachelor’s degree alongside normal full-time work. “That way I could build up my knowledge, without putting my career on hold. It was a perfect combination for me. And because the programme takes place online, I could plan my studies around when it suited me best,” he adds.

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“Hard work pays off!” wrote Mathias Kallan on his LinkedIn profile, when he received his exam certificate from Leeds Beckett University in England - who IBA collaborate with, on the bachelor’s in International Business programme.

A very understanding partner

Mathias Kallan lives in Kolding with his partner and her daughter. The small family has been a massive support along the way during the programme, says Mathias.

“There’s been a great level of understanding, whenever I’ve spent many hours studying over a weekend, for example. And at the same time, my partner has been really good at dragging me away from it from time to time for a well-earned break - which is also something that’s very much needed.


Avanika Trikambhai Kotak
- To start with I was very nervous about whether I could catch up on what I’d missed. Luckily though, the teachers helped out with some extra tuition - until I felt I was fully up to speed.
Avanika Trikambhai Kotak
Studied Masters of Science in International Business
Stine Bloch Jensen
- Not everyone’s suited to sitting quietly at a school desk. And if you’d asked my teachers at school, they’d never have thought I’d be sitting here today with a bachelor’s degree, preparing to begin my master’s. But that’s what’s happened - because I found a way of studying that suits my needs.
Stine Bloch Jensen
Has a bachelor’s in International Business at IBA.
Read her story ->>