Hello everyone. Diversity is taken pretty seriously at McCombs, and the diverse culture and experiences make classrooms in McCombs very interesting and insightful. One great resource for people thinking about McCombs and an MBA in general is the Consortium Graduate Study in Management, the country’s preeminent organization for promoting diversity and inclusion in American business. McCombs is one of the Consortium member schools and today, I want you to meet one of the Consortium students here at McCombs, Brian Williams. Brian is a first year Texas MBA from Erie, Pennsylvania, who before coming to McCombs to get his MBA, worked as an industrial engineer for BAE Systems outside of Houston. He recently caught up with us to talk about his experience as a Consortium student at McCombs.
Why did you apply through the Consortium?
I applied through The Consortium, because I saw it as a vast resource in several ways. It gave the opportunity to handle my MBA’s tuition. It provided a network to help me transition into graduate school, which I knew I needed. Consortium Orientation Program, or OP, was a fantastic exposure to companies, and other Consortium members from other schools which helped me build a national network of friends and future business partners.
Tell us about the Consortium Orientation Program (OP).
OP is a fantastic experience for Consortium admits! It’s a multi-million dollar conference held to introduce top companies to the best diverse MBA students available. The companies really put their best foot forward to encourage your interest in their firm, and consortium members get the opportunity to network with companies they are interested in. There are informational sessions focused on industry, company specific sessions, school specific sessions, and plenty of time to meet and greet with your new Consortium friends from other schools, which is the best part.
How did McCombs prepare you for OP?
McCombs had weekly sessions with all of the Consortium admitted students, complete with webinar presentations, assignments, and first-hand accounts of what happens at OP such that you can be the most prepared for taking full advantage of the opportunity. Different schools do this differently, and to a more or less extent. Texas Consortium preparation is amongst the best, so much so, until many of our students had internship opportunities before school even began due to their OP preparation.
Can you give some advice to Consortium applicants who are considering Texas for their MBA?
All consortium schools are of the very best, so ensure that when you choose a place to get your MBA and spend the next two years of your life, you choose a place where you know you can thrive, be happy, be comfortable, and gain the most from your experience. By and large, the University of Texas is that place!
How do you like Austin?
Austin is a mixture of just about everything you want to do. It’s the city when you want that atmosphere. It’s outdoorsy when you want that experience as well. The city is full of health conscious people who love music, good food, and having a good time. It’s really like no other place. I am a city guy, so for me it has just enough of what I like about the city, but introduces me to things I may have never been exposed to. If you are bored in Austin, you MUST be doing something wrong. It’s a fun place.
What other organizations or activities are you involved in at McCombs?
I am president of Black Graduate Business Association; I am a Venture Fellow, Consortium Students at McCombs, and a member of the Graduate Finance Association.