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09 March 2020

Enrico Marchini, new VP On Campus: My mentors? Adriano Olivetti and Kobe Bryant

Twenty-two-year-old CLEAM graduate plays basketball in D League: Enrico is the new spokesperson among the students of the Bocconi Alumni Community. During his term he wants to focus heavily on the power of sport to stimulate people and bring them together. What if he had to choose between the NBA and a successful start-up? Here's what he told us.

Before him, Paolo Rainone, Antonio Aloisi, Tudor Carstoiu, Bianca Maria Bettoli and Chiara Terrasi took turns: all students elected Vice-President on Campus, a key role on the Alumni Board. Enrico, a CLEAM graduate, is now in the first year of the MSc in Economics and Management of Innovation and Technology; he is active in the student associations as director of the Events Division of Bocconi Students for Sport Management and describes himself as a proactive person who lives by healthy competition with himself.
His main asset is the ability to be able to reconcile universities and sports at competitive levels, sacrifices of which he is proud. For his term on the Bocconi Alumni Community Board, he has very clear ideas: using sport as a lever for aggregation.

From Pesaro to Bocconi. How did you get here?
After graduating in Accounting, I chose to continue studying economic and managerial subjects; however, I wanted to enter an excellent university, which would allow me to get out of a rather small context like that of Pesaro and to push myself beyond my limits, and in this Bocconi exceeded my expectations.

Do you remember your first exam?
How can I forget it! It was the first of the four partials in general mathematics, with Prof. Margherita Cigola. I was calm, I went over it with my companions ... until, hour by hour, the 18th arrived. I arrive in front of the classroom, and the excitement starts: cramming for the last five minutes! In the end I got 24 of 30, among other things, the lowest grade on my record: it was the exam that gave me the most difficulty, but it was a nice initiation rite - a real baptism of fire - but rewarding. But that's okay, every effort and every accomplishment has a reason.

Study, basketball, student association and now also a member of the Bocconi Alumni Community Board. Another challenging commitment.
True, at the beginning I was a little intimidated, also for having to agree on the timing of everything, but it was a huge opportunity and I took it with enthusiasm. I remember that on the first day of lessons Riccardo Battaglia, a member of the Board who was an EMIT student, came to the classroom and introduced us to the Community and its initiatives. I found it fascinating: I was amazed at the amount of activities and opportunities created by this organization.
Then, when my candidacy arrived, Chiara Terrasi (the previous VP on campus, editor's note) explained everything there was to know: how this experience made her grow in different ways and how to enhance as much as possible - but always remaining myself. 
I hope I can leave my mark, as sheleft hers, and I thank her from the bottom of my heart because if I have been nominated it is also because she saw me as the "successor".

What aspects do you intend to work on during your term?
A topic I care about is the importance of sports during the course of university studies. Bocconi is growing a lot in this respect, and I believe that sports represent a fundamental value that students should continue to cultivate even during their studies. 
I am sure that the new Campus and the new Sport Center will play an important role in the coming years ... and I envy the freshmen who will be able to use them for a long time! I will continue to do so as an Alumnus anyway!

The combination of universities and sports is very much alive in American universities. What is your benchmark?
I take my cue from the American college leagues: being able to make high level sports coexist with the university world is a great value. I think of Jeremy Lin, who studied at Harvard and then became a player in the NBA. It is certainly hard to reconcile, but during my BSc I played in the silver C series, with three training sessions per week plus the game. In total, at least 12 hours in all. But they are pure endorphins, sport gives you balance and helps to release mental tensions.

How did your first Alumni Board meeting go?
Very well! I had already got to know some members at a lunch in BCG, with President Riccardo Monti, which allowed me to get an idea of what it would be like. 
I got to know Professor Antonella Carù and the director of the Community Elena Gelosa better, with whom I had already spoken for my candidacy for this role.
In addition, Luca Mignini, who had been my professor of Technology and Innovation Strategy until a few weeks earlier, is also on the Board.
All fantastic people, with whom I am honored to be able to collaborate. 

What advice did they give you?
To avoid wanting to demonstrate something at any cost, and to seem immediately "big" like the others; to listen and bring my student visions, my ideas and my fresh perspective.

Who is your ideal mentor?
In the world of economics Adriano Olivetti, because was always a visionary in the way of doing business and in always wanting to focus on improving the lives of people and the community. In the world of sport, however, Kobe Bryant: his motivation to always push himself beyond the limits, is the reason why he has been a constant source of inspiration even beyond the world of basketball.

What is the real strength of the Alumni network, in your opinion?
Without a doubt, the set of opportunities it brings: it promotes an exchange of experiences and ideas that deepens what you already know and lets you explore what you are least strong at. The greatest strength of the Bocconi Alumni Community is precisely the network itself

The student network is also very valuable: how will you involve them in this adventure?
Up to now I have seen that many students know the Community, but not all of them are aware of the numerous initiatives it offers, and that many of these are also targeted at them. If any of them want to help me, I would be very happy to receive opinions and suggestions, both for the present and once my studies are finished, to understand if there are aspects to improve and work on.

Name a virtue and a defect of your university.
I would say two sides of the same coin: that Bocconi is an immense source of stimuli, in part thanks to the healthy competition that distinguishes it. This sometimes brings a lot of pressure that you have to learn to manage if you don't want to risk falling, but that is also the best training to prepare us for the world of work.

What do you want to do once you graduate?
The dream would be to found my ownstart-up: I am very interested in the business world and my thoughts travel continuously in search of new ideas that maybe one day could become reality. The world of apps and platforms, for example, offers continuous opportunities, and you have to follow the trend: innovation continues in all sectors and enters everywhere, so you have to ride the wave. And Bocconi with Speed Mi Up and Bocconi For Innovation is doing a lot in this regard.

What if you had a choice, would it be better to play in the NBA or be a great startuppista
This is really difficult! The NBA is the dream of any child who plays basketball ... so, instinctively, I would say NBA.
But I could play until I was thirty-five and then dedicate myself to the start-up: I again think of Jeremy Lin who invested in the Homecourt app, which applies artificial intelligence in basketball.

What did you understand or confirm in your first month as Vice-President on Campus?
That you can learn from everyone, that you need to be informed and know the topics you are talking about; that every person can be or give you an incentive and that you have to take the best of all the people you deal with. And, last but not least, that it is essential to get out of your comfort zone. . .