Being in an MBA program from a top-ranked school while pursuing a career adds complexity to your life — there is no getting around that. Time management becomes more important …
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A number of years ago, while working in sales at an investment bank, I tried taking a business course at NYU. I was unexpectedly sent to work in Hong Kong a month into the semester. Too late to drop the course, I missed several classes and the midterm – all of that time and money went down the drain. I did not wanting to interrupt my career with a full-time program, so I put aside my business school aspirations – until MBA@UNC came along.
Serving our Chapel Hill community is why MBA@UNC staff members spent their Saturday, Nov. 5 working on “The House that Kenan-Flagler Built.” The 8th Habitat for Humanity of Orange County, N.C., brings together students, faculty and staff from all UNC Kenan-Flagler programs to build homes in our community. Working together is a visible example of our dedication to teamwork and community, two of our core values.
Much to my delight, shortly after completing my GMAT, I learned that UNC Kenan-Flagler would be offering a program for working professionals who are not located in Chapel Hill. Though I had other options, I chose to attend MBA@UNC, believing it would be the best education with the least impact on my ability to perform at work, and be a good father to my kids.
I walked into the program with “skeptical optimism,” if that is even a phrase. I wanted a top-tier program, but needed something that fit into my family life and allowed me to stay at my job. Speaking with the admissions counselors, the MBA@UNC felt like a good fit, but I had a lot of unanswered questions: Will I make substantial relationships with my classmates? Will an on-line classroom engage me intellectually? Should I just wait a year and let UNC work out the kinks?
Even with all these questions, I was intrigued. I thought, “This will be like a start-up, I’ve always wanted to work at a start-up.” So that pushed me over the edge – and I entered the program with “skeptical optimism..
“You already have a Master’s Degree? Why do you want another one?”
So was the first question the interviewer asked me six months ago.
Fast forward to today: I am in the middle of taking my Financial Accounting final and I just received an email from MBA@UNC wondering when I’ll be ready to post my first blog. My first thought is, “Hey, I’m here trying to remember how to calculate Return on Assets, there may not be a reason to write this blog if I can’t solve this problem.” That was when I turned off the email account.
Our team at MBA@UNC wanted to send you a friendly Friday invitation to a Q&A session with our Admissions Director, Beth Flye next week on Beat the GMAT. Starting at 1pm EST on Thursday, September 29th, you can join Beth in an interactive hour-long chat to discuss the MBA@UNC admissions process and have your questions answered by one of the best admissions directors around.
(Editor’s Note: Like last week’s student contributor, Kristen Fanarakis, Ana-Laura Diaz is also a UNC Chapel Hill alum. After many different career paths taken and conquered, Ana-Laura shares with us why now was the right time for her to pursue an MBA.)
Like many returning students, I have tried different roles and career paths in order to find one that best suits me – my interests, my goals and my passions. I have held positions as varied as leading a string quartet to teaching online to practicing law. Though these different roles are seemingly unrelated, I came to realize that underlying the majority of these pursuits (and, indeed, most ventures) there is a related theme: business.
This realization was what initially prompted me to consider another degree: the MBA. To me, what is interesting is that the success of most ventures – no matter how un-business-like – ultimately rely upon the skills and abilities that underpin a business education.