Gruezi from Switzerland

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Gruezi! That’s Swiss-German for greetings! I’m writing this post from St. Gallen, Switzerland where I am finishing my last semester. I’ve been here for two weeks and it’s been such a whirlwind! Read more ›

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Posted in Full-Time

FACE/OFF

faceoff

Happy New Year, everyone! As we start off on a brand new semester, my classmates and I are soon approaching the end of our MBA journey. There’s no better time than now to ask two of my classmates to reminisce and provide you with some different perspectives on the Texas MBA at Houston experience.

Without further ado, I present to you: FACE/OFF, starring Andrew Limmer (AL, aka John Travolta) and Tim Carmack (TC, aka Nicolas Cage)! Read on…

Texas MBA at Houston FACE/OFF Poster

TXMBA: Tell us a little bit about yourself…

AL: I grew up in Houston area and went to UT Austin for undergrad where I double majored in engineering and liberal arts. I interned at Exxon in their Commercial group during my last summer in school in their gas marketing organization Read more ›

Posted in Houston

Unabridged thoughts, straight from California ….part 2

Lake Tahoe

This time around, I myself am in California. Hence unabridged thoughts straight from California…part 2.

I do not know how the past few weeks have flown by and exactly a week from now I will be back in Austin. It is so very easy to get used to not worrying about anything. I know it’ll be a ginormous task to get back into schedule and attend classes again.

I have been busy being ‘normal’. Sleeping on time, getting up late, exercising, cooking at home, going for hikes, enjoying time with my husband and meeting lots of friends in the Bay Area. I already know so many people here, from school or otherwise. And yes – special mention to watching the beautiful sunsets here. Absolutely magnificent! There is so much to do around here. Hop into the car, hit the pedal for 1.5 – 2 hours in any direction and you could be near an ocean, a desert, mountains, redwood forests or in San Francisco. And the weather will always encourage and favor you. It’s a haven for people who love being outdoors. I know I will enjoy being here! Read more ›

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First Semester is Over, on to New Challenges

My Hot Seat Marketing Challenge Team

Now that my first semester as a Texas MBA is over and my second semester is on the very-near horizon, I cannot help but think of the old cliché “Where did the time go?” It is amazing to think that my MBA experience is 25 percent complete, and although I feel like I have participated in so many activities and learned more than I ever could have imagined, I know that McCombs has so much to offer and that there is so much to the MBA program that there is not enough time in the day to get to what would seem a sufficient amount.

With that disclaimer, there have been two particular highlights to my first semester at McCombs that stand out beyond my normal day-to-day activities. I would advise any potential (and even current) students to take full advantage of those McCombs offerings.

Career Treks: I attended the corporate finance and real estate treks to Dallas last semester. On the corporate finance trek we visited Sabre, Celanese, Yum! Brands, and PepsiCo, and on the real estate trek we visited Lincoln Property Company, Hillwood Investments, KDC, Invesco, and ProLogis. These career treks were my personal highlight of the semester from a “career” perspective Read more ›

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Semester Recap

2013-Net-Impact-Conference

I’ve officially attended my last class at McCombs. Crazy. Wait, you may be saying to yourself, since when do people graduate in December? Not to worry, I’m not done with school but my next post will be from…the University of St. Gallen in Switzerland, where I will be finishing my last semester on exchange. Another semester has quickly elapsed, so  let’s catch-up on a few highlights.

Conferences

One of the coolest things about being 2013 Net Impact Conferencea student (and being in Austin) are the perks. I was able to attend some really neat conferences this fall at a discounted rate or even better, for free. I went to the Texas Tribune Festival, South by Southwest Eco and the Net Impact Conference in California. It was really refreshing to hear from others that are excited about the same issues and to connect with both classmates and peers. I’m not in the posted photo but my McCombs peers are now famous! Read more ›

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Posted in Austin, Full-Time, Student Life, Student Orgs

Unabridged thoughts, straight from … California!!

I made him a Longhorn too!

With my husband at a Longhorn football game

Where does California come into the picture? Justified question. As I sat thinking about what to write next, I spoke with our blog moderator and he suggested, “Well, why don’t you interview your husband and see what he thinks about being away, about your time in the program, etc.” My first reaction was – would anyone want to read that? Why would anyone want to read about our experience? But as soon as I asked my question, the answer seemed kind of obvious. Joining the course and staying away from your spouse is not the easiest thing to do and is a big decision for everyone (or maybe almost everyone). Right before making that decision, there are hundreds of questions and doubts in mind, and rightly so.

Being away from your spouse for two years requires a lot of everything – patience, courage, strength, effort, determination and extreme levels of understanding. It enforces a certain level of almost cold-heartedness (you are forced to make choices and you can’t always be there with your spouse when you want). To imagine that you have shared those two Read more ›

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Posted in Full-Time, Student Life

Channeling Cormac

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A traveler stood in the doorway, cloaked in the dust of places where most will never visit. He surveyed the room indifferently as if all that lay before him had already been decided. As if each inevitability lay dormant until such moment when its dutiful actors would take their cue. The diners ordered pie, and chewed mindlessly on local gossip.

Cormac McCarthy – author of No Country for Old Men and arguably our greatest living writer – didn’t write that. If he had, it would be much better. Those who have read his works will recognize the style but will also undoubtedly recognize the fraud, much as art historians can spot a counterfeit Picasso. Yet despite the fraud, those who read it will appreciate it, for the same reason that they appreciate the way McCarthy extracts the weight of darkness from the seemingly benign interactions that shape our lives. Because it reminds us how much it means to be alive. Read more ›

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So Many Feelings.

Entering class.

My family and friends keep asking me how I feel; how I feel about my classes, how I feel about my teachers, how I feel about my exams, how I feel about my Master’s program. With so much going on so fast, it’s impossible to really pinpoint any specific feelings (and I’ve never been good at talking about my feelings) so I’ll try to express them in the best way possible.

How I felt after my first quiz:

How I felt after midterms: Read more ›

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Posted in Academics, Mexico City

So what does Executive MBA mean?

I joined the Texas Executive MBA program to learn, meet like-minded people, and ultimately further my career. The only thing I understood was that an Executive MBA meant both school and work happened in parallel, and I had an inkling that the EMBA group was more experienced. Other than that, I really had no other perceptions. So what is an Executive MBA?

To me, there are three key things that define an Executive MBA. First, learning to see the bigger picture. Second, learning to prioritize. And finally, looking at yourself in the mirror to see your full potential. The academic part of the program is not easy, and is even more challenging with a full-time job. Regardless, it is extremely rewarding and presents students with different business angles that we would not normally have access or exposure to. The best comparison of this is to be able to have a 50 year career, switching industries and roles throughout, akin to being an operations manager of a sock factory to an executive of a healthcare firm. As the program progresses, the entire curriculum starts to weave into a larger story with even more ah-ha moments of insight.

Now let’s talk about priorities, and balance. Without making too many generalizations, those of us in an executive MBA program have made a choice to continue working Read more ›

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The Journey So Far: Tips for Executive MBA Survival

The plague, the EMBA program - what's the difference, really?
The plague, the EMBA program - what's the difference, really?

The plague, the EMBA program – what’s the difference, really?

As we’re about midway through the first semester, I can’t help but mimic the guy with the plague in Monty Python and the Holy Grail: “I’m not dead yet!” (Hopefully none of my classmates are hovering behind me muttering, “Yes you are, you’ll be stone dead in a moment.”)

So how have I managed to avoid getting tossed on the meat wagon? Here’s what has gotten me this far.

1.  Be militant with your time. When friends or coworkers ask me how school is going, my general response is, “It sucks up every spare minute and begs for more.” There’s no shortage of things I could study or read. So time blocked out for Read more ›

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Posted in Academics, Executive
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