As it is turning 30, the Foundation supports the social commitment emlyon business school is developing, as one of the School's strategic lines of action, a School turned into a Benefit Corporation in July 2021. As such, it is becoming a significant lever to support the School's policy of inclusion and social diversity.

Defined in the “Confluences 2025” strategic plan, social responsibility constitutes a red thread for all the emlyon activities. The growing civic and social commitment of the School will translate notably into an increased number of supported students in its programs, with tuition fees paid for, up to 100%, for students with CROUS scholarships.

Each donation made to the emlyon Foundation is given back directly to students in need, which represents about 500 supported students every year.

Since it was created in 1993, under the umbrella of the Fondation de France, leader of philanthropy in France, the Foundation is developing with one philosophy: humans at the heart of all projects and students as sole beneficiaries.

Upon turning 30 years old, the emlyon Foundation is showing encouraging results: 500 students were provided support with three times the level of donations between 2021 and 2022. Given the needs of youngsters and in this perspective, the donation level from companies, foundations, individuals, along with those from alumni and students' parents, will be further intensified under the drive of Lucie Constant, Chief Delegate of the emlyon Foundation.

3000 jeunes ont bénéficié d’aides de la Fondation emlyon.

One ambition for 5 great programs

1- Providing life expense grants to students in dire situations

Some students are faced with too complex a situation to be able to study with the right peace of mind. The ambition of emlyon is to have a student community reflecting social and cultural diversity: profile heterogeneity is a virtuous result for all.

That is why, since September 2022, emlyon has been enforcing progressive gratuity up to 100% of tuition fees for students with the smallest incomes in the Grande École Program.

In addition, the emlyon Foundation provides solidarity grants for students' life expenses (housing, transports, food etc.). These annual grants can be renewed and are allocated for the daily needs of students who are not covered by the other existing provisions (APL, State, Region, city aid ...).

↦ At emlyon, this represents 10% of students in higher education programs, and a minimum of €300,000 a year for 200 beneficiaries.

2- Allocating emergency funds to students faced with dramatic and unexpected situations

While studying at emlyon business school, some students can suddenly be faced with heavy personal situations (sickness, death in the family, a family breakdown, a conflict in their country for international students) which may jeopardize their ability to continue studying, and consequently, put their future at risk.

Beyond the professional support they may get from the Health and Well-being Center, where they will be able to consult a nurse, a psychologist or talk with a social worker, courses and academic requirements may be adjusted, and the emlyon Foundation may grant a punctual emergency financial aid to help overcome the brutal changes these students are faced with.

Twice a month, a committee made of representatives from the different emlyon departments (Social and Environmental Responsibility, Student Services Center, Programs…) study closely each case and in particular, its urgency and the expected impact of the punctual aid. All students can be provided such support.

↦ Depending on the situations, grants are usually around €1,000 each, with an overall budget of €100,000 a year, this represents about 100 potential beneficiaries.

3- Supporting medically challenged students or students with disabilities

emlyon business school created its own Disability Unit in 2018, to provide an individualized support for people with temporary or permanent disabilities, including program and examination adaptations. The Disability Unit also serves at raising awareness in the entire emlyon community, ensures that the future campus of emlyon in Lyon Gerland, to open in 2024, is readily accessible for students with disabilities.

In 2023, 148 students are identified as having disabilities (hearing-impaired, visually impaired, reduced mobility, chronic diseases or psychological illnesses). For them, the School finances the dedicated team for the support of people with disabilities (such as assistance in taking notes, sign language interpreters), the equipment required (adapted software) and designing the current campus (rest rooms, nap bubble for neurodivergent people).

In addition, the Foundation provides specific grants, to cover life expenses weighed down by impairments, mobility assistance for daily transport and international internships, or to address a specific requirement the Disability Unit identified.

↦The financial provision for this program is of €100,000 a year for 20 beneficiaries.

4- Allowing promising youngsters to access business schools via the “Tour de France of oral exams”.

The “Tour de France of oral exams” provides coaching sessions and merit grants for youngsters in Grande Ecole preparatory classes. Due to their social or regional backgrounds, youngsters sometimes self-censure their academic ambitions. These students need to be supported and guided to enter training programs in which they will be able to express their full potential. Fighting against self-censorship in competitive examinations is another way for emlyon, to promote equal opportunities.

That is why emlyon and the Foundation provide for youngsters, both human guidance, under the form of coaching sessions, and financial aid. As such, in the “Trait d'Union Prépas” program the School started in 2008, some students in preparatory classes are supported for two years via weekly tutoring sessions, advanced internships during school breaks (languages, writing a CV, preparation to oral exams, cultural projects, campus invitations...). With the strong momentum of the School's staff, alumni and many students from the Astuce association, the program is part of a national interdepartmental program called “Les Cordées de la Réussite”.

In addition to the coaching sessions, a financial aid is provided by the Foundation allowing youngsters to pay for the expenses incurred to take the oral exams of the Great French Schools (lunch, transports, housing all over France). This aid is provided to youngsters from priority education or rural areas, students in preparatory classes close to the campus in Lyon with 5 partner institutions.

↦ With an overall envelop of €20,000, aid is allocated according to their family context.

5- Providing a dynamic approach for Research by supporting PhD students

To deliver high-quality education, emlyon relies on a world-class Faculty. Research is essential to fuel the School's academic content, permeate the world's scientific conversation, promote interactions with companies, regional territories and Society, and assert emlyon's world ranking position and accreditations.

As such, emlyon business school started the international doctoral program free-for-all, to train international students to become top-notch researchers. These PhD students acquire theoretical knowledge and the method competences required, assist permanent professors and drive research projects. This complete program (learning, teaching and thesis) is carried out in English. Provided by emlyon business school, this PhD differs from the doctorates provided only by French universities and opens onto international positions in the great institutions of higher education worldwide.

emlyon and the Foundation provide scholarships to cover the whole of the tuition fees and relocation expenses over several years, to allow these PhD students to have the best possible conditions and be fully dedicated to their research works. 20 profiles, including every year, 5 new candidates, are selected according to their academic results, GMAT and TOEFL scores, academic references and research projects.

↦ For 20 PhD students, the overall budget is more than €200,000.

Lastly, the Foundation is provided with a renewed Administration Board

The emlyon Foundation is managed by an Administration Board of volunteering representatives of the entire emlyon ecosystem: the school's administration, the students and the CCI LYON METROPOLE Saint-Etienne Roanne as emlyon is a consular school; along with benefactors and qualified personalities chosen for their competences in the action fields of the Foundation. Administrators collectively agree upon which actions they want to support, beneficiaries and amounts to be allocated. Down the line, they also make sure that the funded projects are implemented properly.

Chairman of the Foundation: Philippe Klocanas (Grande Ecole Program 1986) As Chairman since 2021, Philippe Klocanas is also co-founder and Director of Weinberg Capital Partners created in 2005 with Serge Weinberg, a committed investment fund which was graded with an A+ according to the UN's responsible investments in 2020.

Chief Delegate and Fundraising Director: Lucie Constant
Appointed in March 2022, she is in charge of the Foundation's daily actions in pair with the Chairman. As an enthusiastic expert with a 15-year professional experience in collecting donations from the culture and higher education sectors, Lucie Constant has specialized in the ex-nihilo development of fundraising strategies for institutions with a large international outreach. She is actively involved in the Association Française des Fundraisers and in the Club des Fonds et Fondations of the Auvergne Rhône-Alpes Region.

The Administration Board is made of 11 trustees:

  • Bénédicte Bost as representative of the School,
  • Jacques-Edouard Charret as representative of the emlyon alumni,
  • Clément Gojard as representative of students,
  • Nicole Sibeud as representative of the CCI,
  • Anabelle Flory-Boiron, Ashley Fernandes, Victor Huet, Philippe Klocanas, as administrators of benefactors
  • Anne Thimonier, Françoise Perriolat, Peter Wirtz, as administrators of the qualified personalities college.

With the impetus of its Chairman, Philippe Klocanas, this new team will continue the Foundation's dynamic approach and carry out its ambitious projects.

For Isabelle Huault, Executive President and Dean of emlyon business school:

“The ambition of emlyon business school to become one of the first Global Business Universities goes hand-in-hand with an unrelenting commitment for social responsibility. The Foundation's support by our side is priceless for us to build a school for the purpose of a more inclusive society, with more solidarity and respect for everyone. I want to thank all the actors - administrative staff members, professors, students, alumni - but also the benefactors and trustees of the Administration Board for such a valuable commitment by our side”.

Philippe Klocanas, Chairman of the Foundation of emlyon business school

“It's an honor for me to chair the Foundation of emlyon, a school which has given me the opportunity to achieve my projects. I now want to contribute to give that same chance to many more young ones”.

For Nicolas Julia (Grande Ecole Program 2011), former beneficiary of the emlyon Foundation, co-founder and CEO of Sorare, French unicorn start-up which marked the history of French Tech with its record fundraising of more than 680 million Dollars: 

“I am proud to have gone through emlyon, I can see now, how it is such a fertile ground for future entrepreneurs. Creativity, innovation and risk-taking are more valued there than in other schools. Such values allowed me to create Sorare, values which have permeated its model.”

About emlyon business school:

Founded in 1872 by the Lyon CCI, emlyon business school has an enrollment of 9,020 students of 125 nationalities over 6 campuses worldwide (Lyon, Shanghai, Saint-Etienne, Paris, Bhubaneswar and Mumbai). emlyon draws on a Faculty of 172 international professors and researchers, and a network of 190 global academic partners, to provide learning tracks of excellence opened to the world. emlyon runs a community of 38,600 alumni spread out in 130 countries. As a Société à Mission since July 2021, emlyon's raison d'être consists in: “providing life-long training and support to meaningful individuals able to transform organizations, for a fairer society, with more solidarity and respect for the planet.” In its early makers pedagogy, action and reflection are closely intertwined. Skill hybridization and social responsibility are at the heart of its training programs, where the best of both socio-economic and academic worlds meet.

Press contacts:

KBZ Corporate for emlyon:

Laurence Martin - - 06 47 69 85 99
Karine Zimeray - - 06 09 15 65 14