Published on 14 Aug 2023

Strengthening the French connection

Marine Dejoux, a French tech engineer with two master’s degrees, talks about her connectedness with Singapore and how she taps it to engage fellow NTU alumni in France as she presides over the country’s alumni association.

By Nur Isyana Isaman

Marine Dejoux (TIP/2019) lives and works in Paris but her mind frequently wanders to her second home, Singapore, where she attended high school and pursued postgraduate studies. 

Holder of a master’s degree from a leading digital engineering school, the Télécom SudParis, a member of the Institut Polytechnique de Paris, she then decided to pursue a Master of Science in Technopreneurship & Innovation (MSc TIP) at NTU Entrepreneurship Academy in 2018.

“My dream was to complement my technological background with another qualification oriented around entrepreneurship because I believe that an entrepreneurial approach is essential to succeeding in technological projects,” said Marine.

Marine attended the Singapore French School from 2007 to 2012 while her father worked in Southeast Asia, developing a sense of belonging and connectedness to Singapore, which grew deeper after she returned to France. 

“I knew about NTU, a university which I consider to be at the confluence of the Western and Asian worlds and is able to provide students with a unique ecosystem, which was why I chose to further my studies in Singapore even though I could have studied a similar programme in London,” said the 28-year-old.

 Marine Dejoux holds two master’s degrees, including the Master of Science in Technopreneurship & Innovation from NTU.

Describing herself as an engineer with an entrepreneurial mindset, Marine currently works as a tech product owner at VeepeeTech, one of Europe’s leading e-commerce platforms.

“I like to innovate in complex and impactful projects. Currently, I manage two technical teams comprising ten members of different nationalities to improve information systems while taking charge of relations with clients and transversal teams.”

“A similarity between France and Singapore is the strong technological culture. My key takeaway from living in Singapore and pursuing the master’s degree at NTU is that diversity brings different perspectives to the table, which enables any team to innovate continuously, win, and go further,” said Marine, who was a class representative involved in organising social events after school hours.

Marine (first row, sixth from right) with her classmates from the MSc TIP programme.

As a cosmopolitan citizen who has lived in Australia, France and Singapore, Marine can speak four languages: French, English, Spanish, and basic Mandarin. She first took Mandarin classes in Singapore during her teens and continued studying it when she returned to France.

“I still return to Singapore and would meet my friends from NTU over a meal in hawker centres. My favourite dishes in Singapore are chicken rice and chilli and black pepper crab,” she shared.

Connecting with NTU

Marine applies her learning points from NTU not just in her career but also in giving back to her alma mater. As the first President of NTU Alumni Association (France), Marine leads an active committee of members from multicultural backgrounds. The other committee members are Arvind Hurboseea (SCSE/2002), Stephanie Zhao (NBS/2016), Huang Xiaochao (MAE/2010), and Deepak Subramanian (SCSE/2011).

“The story of the NTU Alumni Association (France) started 12 years ago with Lionel Vincke (NBS/2011), who coordinated the NTU Alumni Circle in France with success. Since graduating from NTU in 2019, I helped Lionel organise alumni gatherings,” said Marine.

Marine receiving a token of appreciation from NTU Deputy President and Provost, Prof Ling San, at the launch of NTU Alumni Association (France) held in Paris in July 2023.

The NTU Alumni Association (France) was formed in May 2023 and officially launched in July. The event was graced by NTU Deputy President and Provost, Prof Ling San; the Singapore Ambassador to France, Ms Foo Teow Lee; and representatives from top French educational partners. 

According to Marine, half of the association’s 300 members are French citizens selected for student exchange programmes at NTU. The other half are mostly Asian graduates from the Master of Business Administration programme at Nanyang Business School, who live in France to pursue professional opportunities and personal commitments.

“NTU is becoming quite well-known in France, thanks to the postgraduate and undergraduate exchange programmes with top French universities, especially in engineering and business. I have regular insightful discussions with students who studied in Singapore for such programmes,” she said.

Under her leadership, Marine hopes to connect NTU with France's diverse ecosystems, build stronger partnerships between the two countries she holds close to her heart, and bring the association to greater heights. 

Members of the NTU Alumni Association (France) with NTU staff and invited guests at the launch event.

“We aim to connect and unite our alumni community living in France through quarterly events, such as business discussions, social networking, and sharing of exclusive NTU-related opportunities. We may be far away from the campus, but the memories alumni had forged while studying at NTU bonded us together, and this motivates me to organise learning and networking events for the group. I am excited to be meeting them again at our next social event in October,” said Marine.

Besides France, NTU alumni in other parts of Europe can reach out to alumni associations in Germany, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom, respectively.  

Watch Marine and her committee members, Arvind and Stephanie, have a go at guessing some of the iconic landmarks in NTU and Singapore. 

Photo Credits: Marine Dejoux

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