Choose Your Own Adventure
The MBA is one of the most useful graduate degrees one can earn in adulthood. There are so many different academic, occupational and social paths one can embark on that the degree becomes similar to a “choose your own adventure” novel.
Right from the start of your MBA degree at Goizueta, you’ll gain access to a myriad of clubs, organizations, and foundations to be involved in. In fact, at the start of your MBA experience, I’d suggest waiting a few weeks to fully assess which opportunities you’d like to join so you don’t spread yourself too thin. Your time is precious. Dedicating additional energy outside of classwork is crucial, but limited. Do you want to be a part of Goizueta’s famed Social Enterprise Fellows Program? A member of the Consulting Club? A part of Student Government?
Even with your acceptance of membership, your energy shouldn’t stop there. It’s one thing to receive the club emails and join a meeting or two: it’s another thing to be a presence, to make yourself known across all programs as a valuable asset, through thoughtful ideas and constant intradisciplinary networking.
That’s the beauty and the challenge of an Evening part-time MBA program; everyone has very different timelines. Some people will be involved in a bunch of clubs, organizations, and foundations outside of your main classwork. Some folks have demanding work schedules that restrict their ability to partake in other Goizueta groups. Regardless of your schedule, I highly encourage you to seek opportunities to connect with as many classmates and Goizueta community members as possible.
You’d be surprised how receptive people are to making new friends and offering their help however they can. You’d also be surprised how, even if you are in a class with someone for months and think you know a person well, you’ll discover that a 30-minute coffee chat can reveal a completely different person than your unconscious bias may have assumed.
My main point is, you may only be back in such a lively, engaging academic setting once more during your career. At Goizueta Business School specifically, there are so many unique classmates, professors, community members, and ways to meet them. Equally, there are more opportunities to get involved throughout the greater Atlanta community than your time will permit. My suggestion would be to heavily research these various opportunities within the first few weeks of your degree, but to allow your new coursework to settle in first before taking leaps.
Regardless of how many extracurriculars you involve yourself with, force yourself to consistently meet new people. Sometimes I am on the fence about extending that first message, asking someone if they’d like to grab coffee — will this message be weird? Again, schedules permitting, I have yet to meet someone in the Goizueta community who is unwilling to speak about their career and offer some insight.
By employing these tactics, you’ll be surprised where you end up in five weeks, five months, five years. The MBA world is your oyster!