The first week of classes is over, and it is hard to believe that just a year ago I was working on my application to McCombs. The application process had me excited about where an MBA would take my career, but finally being here has me just as excited for the journey as I am for the destination. Getting to this point has been quite the journey.
My path to an MBA began several years before last year’s application season. I applied to McCombs twice before, once directly out of school and then again a year later. Not surprisingly, I was turned down both times. Looking back, the extra years of work experience helped me understand why I needed the degree and also prepared me for an MBA program. I eventually want to start my own business, and working at a start-up for over two years helped me realize the skills I need to be successful. When it came time to apply again, I was better able to articulate my reasons for going back to school. That’s not to say that I skipped spending nights and weekends writing, editing, and rewriting my essays. It is hard to explain your life goals in only a few hundred words! However, I enjoyed the self-reflection that the application requires and found it quite rewarding. Fortunately, this time around I was invited to interview.
Neither my wife nor I had spent much time in Austin, so we drove down the weekend before the interview to get a feel for the city. We liked that it had much of what other large cities in Texas have to offer yet still maintained a community feel. That close-knit attitude carried over during the interview I had with a second year student. Although we had never met before, he spoke with me like we were friends, which I have found is how most people in Austin treat people they do not yet know. I must have said a few good things during the interview, because I received my acceptance a few weeks after that. Both my wife and I felt blessed that we were going to call Austin our home for at least the next two years.
We moved to Austin at the end of June and enjoyed the time getting to explore the city before Orientation began. Although the past two weeks have been incredibly busy, I find myself more and more excited every morning to go to school. The hands-on opportunities and world-class education that McCombs provides were big reasons for my decision to attend. Learning about those opportunities and seeing the quality of education first-hand has blown away my expectations for what I would get out of the Texas MBA. I cannot wait to see what these next two years have in store.