In a world revolving around “Time is Money”, leaving a paid job to pursue an MBA for two whole years clearly indicates our necessity to up the pace on our existing career graph, or plot a different career point on that graph – be it in terms of industry, function, or even geography.
When I came to McCombs, I knew that this would be the ONE opportunity I would have in a long time to translate my professional passions and talents into a future career. So in the last three months (as that roller-coaster ride called Semester-1 created havoc), it became crucial for me to track my career aspirations. Questioning was natural – do I stay in the technology sphere but move into business development? Or do I find my ‘fit’ in consulting – Google Airplane test, please! What classes do I take? Whom should I be reaching out to? How do I navigate the recruiting process?
The Career Management Cell (CMC) at the McCombs School of Business has provided a carefully drafted map to answer all of those critical questions, and more! Before the MBA program even started, I received notices asking me to reach out to industry experts (working in my areas of interests) to understand the relevance of their experiences, both from the short and the long-term perspective. Once the program started, the first half of the Texas MBA Orientation led to my introduction to different career paths and opportunities. To know first-hand what daily life is for our alums spread out in different industries and functions is invaluable. Such opportunities have continued in huge numbers as the semester progressed. I personally found both the McCombs and the UT alumni network to be extremely reachable, always ready to guide me to choose the right post-MBA career.
PRO TIP: A pretty cool master tool that you would want to use is MARS. It will generate analytic reports on past recruitment data – basically which company recruits when, how many, and for how much (That’s my Analysis of Data class summed up right there). With the help of online business writing resources, Career counselors and second-year students, I made my CV more role-focused and impact-based and not, well, boring. I had the opportunity to attend the National Black MBA Career Fair in Atlanta this year and in order to prep, I got connected with the communication coaches, who helped me immensely with my introduction pitch, and taught me essentials of networking.
Career resources are spread out everywhere. That’s the great thing about being in a Business School. I cannot even begin to insist how important my interactions with my classmates and peers have been. Some of them have worked for the kind of roles in companies that I aspire to reach. Hearing a friend’s real-world accounts of what’s REALLY out there is the best way to explore these interesting but “uncharted” careers. The second-years who are budding entrepreneurs have time and again told me the importance of the McCombs Texas MBA brand in Texas. All you need to do is reach out to that person and a meet-up converts into an interview for a position created just for you! I think where the MBA has been really useful for me is not just by giving me concrete resources but by giving me the business acumen to identify the factors that will take me to the next level moving forward.