ISB Hyderabad (Indian School of Business) didn’t have good news for Riaz Mohammed and he wrote about it earlier on our blog with some advice for others who were in a similar situation (read his ISB MBA application experience). We had hinted that his story was going to change for the better. Riaz is back with some good news to share. News that includes feel-good terms like MBA scholarships, full tuition waiver, stipend, free ride. Music to the ears!
So I finally took a leap of faith and decided to attend University of Georgia’s Terry College of business in August ‘11 from the few options that I had. Five months hence, I can safely say that it has been one of the best decisions that I have made. First, I got more than a free-rider (full-tuition waiver plus stipend) from a ranked university, so I knew that ROI on the MBA degree is already taken care of without even having to worry about where will I end up after graduation.
Second, it is the opportunity to explore different cultures and make new friends and contacts. Finally, I was able to do the much needed ‘reset’ of my life; the transitory escape to college life and be able to do whatever I want (well, almost!).
For me, apart from the obvious world class education offered by Terry faculty, the facilities and resources, and the future, it was the prospect of being a student that appealed to me the most. Rewind 2 years, I was holding half a dozen plum job offers from some of India’s leading companies.
With salaries offered enough to make my peers envious, the easiest option was to just take one among them, enjoy the improvement in reporting hierarchy, and continue with life. However, continuity in education seemed to add more value than in employment. MBA seemed a perfect fit for my needs in continuity – both in education and work.
For someone like me who has lived in the same home/city/country for 27 years, I’d say that getting away from everything – even for a small time – would only make you stronger, more independent and more responsible. And that is the transformation I have undergone in the first five months of the Terry MBA program. As it would be in almost all the top programs, the courses are designed so that you are able to extract the maximum possible relevant information for your job and future even in courses like statistics and economics.
You are able to meet new people — some competitive, some cut-throat, some indifferent, but generally friendly – some types you might not have met so far. You are also able to experiment a few things, bounce ideas off your friends and professors, ideas that you had kept within yourself for a long time. I have personally seen a few of my peers getting on with their entrepreneurship ideas from their marketing plans. I believe all these things are possible because you are in a controlled environment with ample guidance from professors and industry experts. Or of course, you can just choose to live each day, one at a time.
I didn’t go to B-school with a target of getting a 4.0 GPA or that hallowed consulting job. I want to try, to quote Lou Bega, “a little bit of this and a little bit of that.” I have pulled all-nighters before exams right after attending a college football game. I went on a road trip covering four states before my midterms. Somehow, I managed a decent GPA to keep my head above the waters. It is an amazing feeling when all the little things in life work together. The only way to know is to do it. So still thinking why you want to do an MBA?
We’ve requested Riaz to come back again and continue sharing his story with us about his internship and career hunt experience.