Tag: Texas MBA Program (page 3 of 4)

How an MBA Can Help Your Startup Succeed

From Harlan T. Beverly, PhD, Texas Evening MBA ’04

Every year, thousands of students flock to MBA programs nationwide to learn the craft of business. In recent years, many of those students  have come with a gleam in their eye, that of launching and succeeding with their own startup.  At The University of Texas at Austin, MBA applicants can earn a scholarship for their idea, assuming their idea is strong enough. One of the key questions about entrepreneurial education, though, is this: what does it take to succeed at a startup? And more to the point, is that something you can learn in an MBA program?

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2016 TVL Scholarship winners Josh Berrington (left) and William Wilder (right)

Researchers in entrepreneurship have typically focused on the attributes of the founding team as key predictors of success.  While it is obvious that certain characteristics like risk tolerance, persistence, and charisma could be helpful in getting an entrepreneur started, there is still much debate about what it really takes to have a successful startup.

In 2004, I was one of those MBA students with that startup fire in my eye.  Now, a dozen years later and with three successful startups under my belt, I believe that there are many critical things that a student can learn in an MBA program to help better their odds of success.  Here are three things I learned as part of my MBA that I have leaned on to beat the steep odds of startup success (less than 1 in 10).

First and foremost: Define success before you begin. 

Not every startup idea is destined for an IPO or billion-dollar exit.  An MBA helped me to learn how to assess the business potential of a startup idea and set realistic goals for what success looks like.  All too often, startups fizzle out because they reach too high or even achieve limited success…but fail to exit at the right time.

Second: Learn, learn, learn. 

No matter what it’s called – “market validation” or “lean startup” or listening to customers – learning, and adapting is essential to success.  My MBA helped me understand both what I needed to learn (pricing for example), and how I could learn what I needed from real customers quickly.

Finally: Success is never achieved in a vacuum.

My MBA helped me to understand the importance of networking. Hiring and firing are essential leadership skills as a company grows, and an MBA not only helps you understand the leadership principles, but also helps you develop team-based skills to work well with others. For me, it was at UT Austin that I met the co-founders of my first company, as well as many future business partners.

Clearly there are many things to learn and skills to develop as part of an MBA. Can they help an entrepreneur be successful?  Absolutely.  The University of Texas’ Jon Brumley Texas Venture Labs has proven capable of developing MBA students into successful startup founders. The new Texas Venture Labs MBA Scholarship is now open and accepting qualified applicants with world-changing startup ideas. Learn more about the application requirements and submit your application today!

Alumni Spotlight: Blanca Lesmes, Texas Executive MBA ’11

Everyone has something they’re passionate about, and for Blanca Lesmes it’s increasing the accessibility of healthcare to women. Blanca graduated from the Texas Executive MBA Program in 2011 and has used her degree to propel this passion and save the company she co-founded, BB Imaging & Healthcare Consulting, ensuring increased access to ultrasound services for women in the Austin area.

We recently caught up with Blanca to see what she’s up to and to learn about her reasons  #WhyMcCombs.

Why did you decide to pursue an MBA and why did you choose McCombs?

In 2009, my organization was struggling to remain afloat during the recession. I knew that I needed to expand my toolkit to ensure the survival of the company. After visiting a class at McCombs, I knew I wanted to be in an environment that encouraged as much learning from professors as from the talented professionals in the class.

What was the most valuable lesson — inside or outside of the classroom — you learned while completing your MBA?

Oh wow, this is tough. I learned that success in business requires surrounding yourself with amazing people.

How has your McCombs MBA experience helped shape your success?

I have a better understanding of the business cycle. I am incredibly grateful for the network of people I now call my friends. They continue to challenge my assumptions and encourage my personal growth.

Tell us about BB Imaging & Healthcare Consulting. Why did you decide to start this company? What is your role?

BB Imaging & Healthcare Consulting provides ultrasound services and business solutions in healthcare. In 2004, there was a need in the obstetrical market for ultrasound solutions in communities surrounding Austin, this was the impetus for our inception. I am currently the President of the organization. I focus on business development In addition, our organization is a Federal Contractor and my role is to expand into providing consultancy services outside of Texas.

What do you love about your job?

MY TEAM!!! I am so lucky to be able to enjoy the folks I call my team. They are incredibly skilled and masterful at what they do. I couldn’t have imagined working with a kinder bunch.

What do you like to do outside of work?

I am passionate about working to increase accessibility of healthcare to women. Currently, I am on the board of an educational non-profit and a non-profit dedicated to providing women in Malawi (Africa) access to care. I love brainstorming new business ideas and problem solving. On a personal note, I have a tween and a teenager who keep me busy and fulfilled.

What advice do you have for future Texas MBAs?

Just jump! Do not overthink this decision. Many people do what I call “self de-select”. Meaning, applicants don’t even submit applications to the admissions committee because they determine themselves under-qualified. I challenge new candidates to present their best application and attempt this amazing journey. The worst that can happen is not enrolling in the fall which is the same outcome if one doesn’t apply. I say deal with “potential” disappointment and just jump.

Entrepreneurship at McCombs: Austin Startup Week

The McCombs School of Business, ranked #6 for entrepreneurship by U.S. News & World Report, offers many unique resources in one of America’s most innovative cities to prepare students for new business ventures. Many Texas MBA alumni have gone on to run successful startups not only here in Austin, but across the country. Check out some of the companies our awesome alumni have started as we gear up for Austin Start Up Week on October 3, 2016.

Sock Club: Noah Lee, MBA ’16

Sock Club offers a monthly sock subscription and customizable sock designs, with delivery straight to your door. 

  • Founded: 2012sockclub-847b3fcd4214f607a3f5e426e9e175b4
  • Advice to current students: Half the battle is getting started. You will never know if the idea will succeed unless you try it.
  • Favorite part of current position: Every day brings a new challenge.
  • Biggest challenge as an entrepreneur: Finding the time to get everything done and finding good help.
  • How did you and your partner Dane come up with the idea for Sock Club? We read a Forbes article on a subscription sock company that shipped black Italian dress socks, we liked the idea of a reoccurring revenue model, and thought it would be better to do it with colorful socks. Away we went.
  • How did McCombs and the Texas MBA Program help you in running your business? Running a new company requires managing your mistakes and opportunities, and is impacted by how effectively you can react to the results of your economic activity. The Texas MBA Program didn’t necessarily teach me how to do things. It taught me how to think about things and make decisions.

Nicely Noted: Perry Nelson, MBA ’10 

A stationery subscription service that delivers a curated collection of letterpress cards and stamps to your mailbox every month.

  • Founded: 2011xnorsrpc
  • Advice to current MBAs: Take risks while you have the safety net of being in school. You have unique access to almost anyone in the business community by approaching them as a student; take advantage of it.
  • Favorite part of current position: Wearing many hats! Every day is different, and the challenges run the gamut from working with developers, training interns, and pitching press for editorial coverage to assembling the monthly mailing, and more.
  • Biggest challenge as a business owner: Prioritizing and keeping the core value proposition at the forefront of all your efforts.

Beatbox Beverages:  Aimy Steadman, Justin Fenchel, Dan Singer, & Jason Schieck, MBA ’13

A ready-to-drink mixed alcohol beverage, prepared in Austin. 

Justin Fenchel says:beatboxlogo_retina

  • Founded: 2011
  • Advice to current MBA students: Take a chance — you have two years to explore what you really want to do. Try not to get caught up in the chaos of who has a job and who doesn’t. Take the time to find out what you really want to do because you’ll never have a better opportunity.
  • Favorite part of current position: Working doesn’t feel like work.
  • Biggest challenge as an entrepreneur: Stress and fear from starting a business in an industry that we effectively have no experience in.

You’re Invited to McCombs Entrepreneurship Night!

Smart People. Big Ideas. New Connections.

What happens when you combine Austin Startup Week with McCombs’ renowned faculty, world class students and alumni, and Austin’s hottest tech startups? McCombs Entrepreneurship Night!

Come meet successful McCombs entrepreneurs from the Texas MBA and Texas MSTC programs showcasing their startups. You’ll have the opportunity to network with current students, alumni and local entrepreneurs from the growing Austin Startup scene. Join us for discovery, a great time, and complimentary food & drinks.

Register for McCombs Entrepreneurship Night

Meet Us During the ATX Startup Crawl!

The ATX Startup Crawl is a celebration of technology and entrepreneurship in Austin! The Texas MBA Program will be present during the event to answer answer questions and share with you how an MBA degree from The University of Texas at Austin can help you increase your potential and jump start your career.

RSVP today to grab your spot to network with more than 90+ Austin startups and don’t forget to stop by our booth!

Thursday October 6, 2016 5:00pm – 10:00pm
800 Congress Ave, Austin TX 78701

RSVP HERE

Check out more startups started by McCombs alums: http://www.today.mccombs.utexas.edu/2013/12/mccombs-alumni-product-guide

The Texas Working Professional & Executive MBA Class of 2018!

The Texas Working Professional & Executive MBA programs are currently ranked #7 and #17 in the country by U.S. News & World Report,  making McCombs #1 in the thriving state of Texas! At McCombs, working professionals and aspiring executives are able to to work full-time while earning their MBA from a globally-recognized brand within a network of award-winning faculty and accomplished students and alumni making a real impact around the world.

The Texas MBA at Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas MBA at Houston,  and Texas Executive MBA programs welcomed a total of 239 new students to our campuses in Austin, Dallas and Houston this month! Get to know more about our incoming Class of 2018*:

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Student Profiles:

The Couples – Sarita Choudhary/Rohit Rana and Lane Robbins/Alex Lowe

The Dallas/Fort Worth program has two couples in the Class of 2018! Sarita and Rohit have known each other since childhood in India, they got married, they came to the United States from India together and they work together at Ericsson where Sarita is a solutions architect/team lead, and Rohit is a solutions manager.

Alex and Lane will be getting married during the program; they even waited to get the 2016-2017 class schedule before setting a date! These two have known each other for a long time growing up in northern Virginia, but Alex went away to college at SMU and Lane stayed close to home at James Madison University. They reconnected after college and Lane moved to Dallas to join Alex. The rest is history.

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Student Profiles:

George Timbrell

A self described recovering New Yorker, George has been adjusting to the Houston culture well!  He moved to Texas last year after the sale of his firm to Wunderlich Securities. He travels to the firm’s current 33 offices and help advisors deliver attractive investment ideas and solutions to clients.  He provides guidance on alternative investments such as hedge funds, private equity, direct investments and real estate to over 300 financial advisors through his team. George enjoys cycling, music and art and has been having a great time exploring those hobbies in the Houston area.


Emy Hernandez

Emy has been advocating for education since her senior year in high school.  Coming from a family where her parents had 6th grade educations and worked hard labor jobs, she often balanced helping the family and working to be successful in high school.  Emy currently manages programs with Houston ISD to help ensure Latino/a students are able to manage the college application and funding process. Educator and self-described “happy Latina lesbian,” Emy Hernandez is a huge advocate in the LGBTQ world. After getting to know her students, she realized the great need for LGBTQ support on campus and helped establish the Force Allies, the school’s first club dedicated to increasing awareness about the LGBTQ community.

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Student Profiles:

Richard Metzger

Richard was a distinguished naval graduate from UT Austin and served as a Navy Lieutenant in the Caribbean, Mediterranean and Red Seas. After finishing his duty, he joined the family construction company in Houston and is currently VP over sales, marketing and safety. His love of UT runs deep, as well as his love of the water. He’s a certified PADI Master Scuba Diver specializing in spearfishing and wreck diving and is also a member of REEF – dedicated to ocean conservation. He’s also a Sunday school teacher and a church Deacon and he volunteers at Church Under the Bridge in Houston.


Karen Garrido

Karen has had a long career in corporate finance and treasury. She’s currently Finance Manager at AET, Inc., a petroleum logistics company headquartered in Singapore, where she is responsible for financial/tax reporting for entities in Norway, Brazil, UK and US.  Karen commutes from Houston to Austin for classes and is a dedicated mom of three daughters who are now in college, and also passionate about volunteering for local non-profits in Houston. She’s also pumped about going to football games with her new classmates!

Learn more about how you can join the next Texas MBA at Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas MBA at Houston or Texas Executive MBA class by checking their our admissions processes.

Hook ‘Em!

Where In The World Are The Texas MBAs?

As a Texas MBA, you gain access to endless opportunities to travel across the United States and around the world. The Texas MBA Program and the McCombs School of Business strives to expose its students to new cultures and ideas to better prepare them to be effective business leaders who act ethically and responsibility within a global context and think strategically at an international level.

This summer, students from our Full-Time, Evening, Executive, Houston and Dallas/Fort Worth programs traveled across the country to participate in internships, explored foreign countries while gaining new world perspectives, and made some amazing memories along the way.

Check our their adventures and see for yourself #WhyMcCombs, or learn more about the hands-on learning opportunities available at McCombs here.

Texas Evening MBA Global Trips: 
Morocco, Peru/Columbia, Portugal, South Africa, Vietnam/Thailand, Romania/Moldova, Shanghai

TEMBA 2017 Moldova

Class of 2017 Evening MBAs at Orheiul Venchi in Moldova

TEMBA 2017 Johannesburg, South Africa

Class of 2017 Evening MBAs at SuperSport in Johannesburg, South Africa

TEMBA 2017 in Lisbon

Class of 2017 Evening MBAs at Jeronimos Monastery in Lisbon, Portgual

Texas Evening MBAs in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

Class of 2017 Evening MBAs in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

Evening 2017s in Ko Phi Phi Thailand (Ban Thai)

Class of 2017 Evening MBAs in Ko Phi Phi Don, Thailand

Texas MBA at Dallas/Fort Worth Global Trips:
Morocco, Peru/Columbia, Portugal, South Africa, Vietnam/Thailand, Romania/Moldova, Shanghai

Dallas/Fort Worth MBAs at The Bund in Shanghai, China

Class of 2017 Dallas/Fort Worth MBAs at The Bund in Shanghai, China

Dallas/Fort Worth MBAs in Lisbon, Portugal

Class of 2017 Dallas/Fort Worth MBAs in Lisbon, Portugal

Dallas/Fort Worth MBAs at the Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca, Morocco

Class of 2017 Dallas/Fort Worth MBAs at the Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca, Morocco

Dallas/Fort Worth MBAs in Madrid, Spain

Class of 2017 Dallas/Fort Worth MBAs in Madrid, Spain

Class of 2017 Dallas/Fort Worth MBAs Prasanth Bathae and Kelsey Leigh on the The Great Wall of China

Texas Executive MBA International Seminar:
Beijing, China

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Class of 2016 Executive MBAs in Tiananmen Square in Beijing, China

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Class of 2016 Executive MBAs Attending a Business in China Seminar at Beijing University

Class of 2017 Executive MBAs at the Shanghai Hongqiao Rail Station

Class of 2016 Executive MBAs at the Shanghai Hongqiao Rail Station

Class of 2017 Executive MBA Nathaniel Mayfield at The Great Wall of China

Class of 2016 Executive MBA Nathaniel Mayfield at The Great Wall of China

Class of 2017 Executive MBAs at the Forbidden City in Beijing, China

Class of 2016 Executive MBAs at the Forbidden City in Beijing, China

Texas MBA at Houston Global Trips:
Morocco, Peru/Columbia, Portugal, South Africa, Vietnam/Thailand, Romania/Moldova, Shanghai

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Class of 2017 Houston MBAs Making New Friends in Morrocco

Houston MBAs at the Cape of Good Hope in South Africa

Class of 2017 Houston MBAs at the Cape of Good Hope in South Africa

Houston MBAs at Muay Thai Live in Bangkok, Thailand

Class of 2017 Houston MBAs at Muay Thai Live in Bangkok, Thailand

Houston MBAs in front of the Vasco da Gama Bridge in Lisbon, Portugal

Class of 2017 Houston MBAs in front of the Vasco da Gama Bridge in Lisbon, Portugal

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Class of 2017 Houston MBAs at the Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca, Morocco

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Class of 2017 Houston MBAs in Shanghai, China

Texas Full-Time MBA MAPS Trips:
Galapagos Islands, Tanzania & Austin Day Trips

Class of 2018 Texas Full-Time MBAs

Class of 2018 Texas Full-Time MBAs on the McCombs Adventure Program Wine Tasting Day Trip in Fredericksburg, TX

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Class of 2018 Texas Full-Time MBAs on the McCombs Adventure Program River Tubing Day Trip in New Braunfels, TX

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Class of 2018 Texas Full-Time MBAs on the McCombs Adventure Program BB& & Brewery Day Trip in Taylor, TX

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Class of 2018 Texas Full-Time MBAs on the McCombs Adventure Program in Tanzania where they partnered with Building Bridges Worldwide to construct a new complex for a local school

Tanzania School Photo

Class of 2018 Texas Full-Time MBAs on the McCombs Adventure Program in Tanzania where they partnered with Building Bridges Worldwide to construct a new complex for a local school

Texas Full-Time MBA Summer Internships

Texas Full-Time MBAs Apple Interns

Class of 2017 Full-Time MBA Apple Interns

Texas Full-Time MBA Delta Air Lines Interns

Class of 2017 Full-Time MBA Delta Air Lines Interns

Texas Full-Time MBA Taylor O'Brien Interning at EA (Electronic Arts)

Class of 2017 Full-Time MBA Taylor O’Brien Interning at EA (Electronic Arts)

Texas Full-Time MBA Microsoft Interns

Class of 2017 Full-Time MBA Microsoft Interns

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Class of 2017 Full-Time MBAs Nicole Smith, Snehin Arambhan & Andrew Hodge Interning at Salesforce

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Class of 2017 Full-Time MBA Patrick Swelgin Interning at Google

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Class of 2017 Full-Time MBA Karen Madera Interning at IBM

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Class of 2017 Full-Time MBA Deloitte Interns at the Dallas Cowboys Stadium

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Class of 2017 Full-Time MBA Aaron Huffman Interning at Boeing

Class of 2017 Full-Time MBA Dell Interns

Texas Full-Time MBAs Moni Jane and Kevin Chen Interning at the Dr Pepper Snapple Group

Class of 2017 Full-Time MBAs Moni Jane & Kevin Chen Interning at the Dr Pepper Snapple Group

Class of 2017 Full-Time MBA Amazon Interns

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