Tag: MBA Women

My Texas MBA Women’s Forum Experience

From Julia Brannan, Texas MBA Class of 2018, on her experience at the 2015 Women’s Forum.

julia-brannanWomen interested in  the Texas Full-Time MBA Program are encouraged to attend our annual Women’s Forum, taking place Nov 18th & 19th! There’s only a few spots left, so apply today!

During the forum you’ll have the opportunity to learn about the Texas Full-Time MBA Program, interact with current students and faculty, understand the value proposition of the Texas MBA, and experience what makes Austin so special!


Here’s a look into my Women’s Forum experience:

As I sat in the audience with 80 other prospective female MBAs interested in learning more about McCombs, I couldn’t even begin to imagine how much this event would impact my decision to join the McCombs community.

Day 1 – Thursday

I join the Texas MBA Women’s Forum GroupMe and current students are messaging us, “Who runs the world? Girls!” I’m feeling excited. Now I know I have an additional bond with some of these women beyond McCombs and a passion for women in business – a love for Beyoncé. I head to the Welcome Reception and meet amazing current students including Amira Fawcett, class of 2017. She came from a sales and trading background and had just been accepted for a product management internship at Amazon. Amira is a prime example of what a woman in business is like at McCombs. She’s down to earth, hilarious, driven as ever, and is passionate about helping her female peers reach their goals.

Day 2 – Friday

I applied during the first application round so I head to my scheduled interview in the morning. My interview is with Eric Franco, class of 2016, who’s heading to a job at an energy company post-graduation. Eric shared stories about taking classes in UT Austin’s other graduate schools, including top programs in law, public policy and engineering (the list goes on!). He loved that McCombs offers a tight-knit community along with access to endless resources throughout UT. Post-interview I grab lunch with girls attending the forum and later we head to happy hour with current students and explore Austin.

Day 3 – Saturday (main part of the Forum!)

We settle in and are greeted by Austin’s beloved breakfast tacos and the Assistant Dean of the Texas Full-Time MBA Program, Tina Mabley. Tina, a McCombs Alum, shares what makes her love this program – the people. She explains how every year the students, faculty, and administration continue to build the program for the better. For instance, Silva Gentchev, class of 2017, had just launched the Social Impact Internship Fund (SIIF). SIIF is a student-run initiative for first-year MBAs geared to help fund their classmates’ social impact internships with organizations that otherwise would not be able to afford MBA salaries (spanning non-profits to the public sector to social enterprises). The rest of the day moves at a quick pace and I’m viciously scribbling down things that inspire me left and right. To share a few:

  • During the Student Life Panel I meet Tenaj Ferguson, Class of 2017, who won the Texas Venture Labs Scholarship worth $10,000 and in-state tuition after pitching her own-startup in the competition. Tenaj is using an incubator in Austin to help grow her business, Lady Epicure Gourmet – a retail and food service natural food brand and manufacturer of commercial food tech equipment. Using McCombs’ strength in strategic marketing, she landed an internship at the Campbell Soup Company to build upon her brand management skills.
  • Ty Henderson, a favorite McCombs professor, leads us through the Classroom Experience, providing a taste of what his Analysis of Markets class would be like. It’s incredibly engaging, partially case-based, and rooted in data analytics.
  • I meet Nikki Bruce, Class of 2015, in the Beyond the MBA – Alumni Panel. Nikki used McCombs’ MBA+ Leadership Program to pursue a micro-consulting project with Boston Consulting Group. This experience validated her desire to pursue consulting and she now works full-time at Deloitte Consulting.
  • Associate Director of Career Management, Ramona Arora, shares during the Career Management discussion how students have access to career counselors and communication coaches who help to advise a student’s career search, assist with resumes, and provide feedback on interview behaviors. Additionally, I learn we’ll have access to the largest alumni network in the country – alums who are more than willing to take our calls (I’ve experienced it firsthand now, they really are)!

Attending the 2015 Women’s Forum was far and away the most rewarding experience I had throughout the MBA application process. Two main things really stand out to me looking back; first, the forum gave me that intangible validation that McCombs was the right fit for me. Austin, and to a larger extent, McCombs, were environments that I knew I wanted to call home. Second, it facilitated an-ongoing conversation that I personally feel strongly about – women’s experience in the workplace and in leadership in general.

Now, in my first semester at McCombs I truly feel that the answer to “Who runs the world?” is #McCombsWomen.

texas women mean business

 

The 2016 Forté MBA Women’s Leadership Conference

From Stacey Kammerdiener, Senior MBA Admissions Officer 

Over 400 businesswomen descended upon Austin, Texas this past weekend for the 2016 Forté MBA Women’s Leadership Conference (WLC)! The event is orchestrated annually by the Forté Foundation, a non-profit organization focused on connecting & empowering women in business, and providing access to business opportunities and education. This year, The University of Texas at Austin had the pleasure of hosting these women in our own backyard at the AT&T Executive Hotel and Conference Center on campus.

The WLC reached a new attendance record this June, with 438 MBA students coming from almost 50 universities across the country!

The conference is geared toward incoming first year MBA students and rising second year MBA students, and gives women an opportunity to network with a plethora of top companies such as Whirlpool Corporation, Cognizant, Hines, Amazon, AT&T, Dow, Boston Consulting Group, IBM, and Wells Fargo.  Our MBA ladies took part in conference prep in the months leading up to the WLC so that they could make the most of the opportunities presented. These prep calls coached first year students on resume writing, networking with the company recruiters, and provided advice on how to follow up with leads generated at the conference.

The McCombs School of Business and the Texas MBA Program had the highest number of students in attendance (Hook ‘Em!) with 45 incoming and current MBA students from all our programs. The Class of 2018 newbies had the opportunity to meet one another before orientation in August and our incoming Forté Fellows also had the chance to meet each other at a reception on Thursday evening hosted by Dimensional Fund Advisors.  Additionally, thirteen Texas MBA alumni volunteered for panels & networking with current MBA women.

Texas MBA ’02 alumna and CMO of RetailMeNot, Marissa Tarleton, spoke on the challenges and opportunities of being a woman marketing executive. CEO of Austin-based startup Shipping Easy and Texas MBA ’94 alumna Katie May was featured on a panel about entrepreneurship. McCombs staff were also featured presenters at sessions such as “Leveraging Social Media for Your Career,” and the Texas MBA Graduate Women in Business organization (GWIB) hosted a fun happy hour on Saturday afternoon.

Join Us for Our Next Women’s Event in Austin!

Networking with and learning from so many successful and driven women is nothing short of inspirational. If you are making your plans for fall, our 2016 Women’s Forum registration is now open. Future women MBAs are strongly encouraged to attend this exclusive event to network with current students and alumni, meet McCombs faculty and staff, and attend info sessions about curriculum, career planning, experiential learning, and life in Austin, Texas.  Apply Now!

We look forward to seeing you soon. Hook ‘Em!

GWiB Goes Country, Y’all!

Despite living in the great state of Texas, I will say that while we are busy keeping Austin weird, we don’t get to do very many “real Texan” things.  Well, that all changed during the second annual Graduate Women in Business Retreat we had in April.

Carly Tanker, Lasso Queen!

Carly Tanker, Lasso Queen!

This year, we had almost 20 ladies drive out to Rancho Cortez in Bandera, Texas for a night of fun and bonding with our official cowboy host, Larry.  We began the afternoon with a scenic horseback ride and lasso lesson.  My horse’s name was Whiskey, and he was poorly behaved – the irony does not escape me.  After dinner, we went on a hayride where we were able to take in the scenic Texas Hill country as well as get up close, and a little too personal with some real, non-Bevo longhorns.

IMG_5033

Later in the evening, we enjoyed s’mores around a campfire with some of the other guests, including a nice family from Sweden.  We rounded out the evening with some time in the hot tub and some serious girl-talk before turning in for the night.

Morning Trail Ride

Morning Trail Ride (no filter needed!)

The next morning, which started early at 8am (despite his casual demeanor, Larry runs a pretty tight ship), we had breakfast and were able to split up into another two groups for final trail rides before heading back to Austin.

Carly and I were so happy that we were able to get the retreat together, because I have to say it was one of my favorite events for the year.  We have such a strong community of women in the MBA program here, that it was great to spend some time together having fun and getting outside of our comfort zones.  It was also great to have a diverse group of attendees, international students, exchange students, part-time students and first and second years.  Overall, now that we are coming to a close on the first year of the MBA program I can say that I am so thankful to have met these wonderful women and can’t wait to hang out at Rancho Cortez again next year!IMG_5034

See you next year, Larry!

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