Wednesday, July 08, 2009

What I Would Have Done Differently

Blogging on here feels so odd now that I am definitely no longer "Maybe"MBA. But it's taking me longer than expected to wrap up my last MBA thoughts. Life!

I've pondered this post for some time as my answer changes day to day. For some time this spring I felt that I should have applied to more programs, especially some on the west coast. However, now that I find myself gravitating back toward my original career plan, that seems less important. At moments I have felt that I should never applied to an MBA program at all! But those moments are quite rare these days. So, with that, what would I have done differently for an MBA at Booth?

  • Taken only 1 finance and 1 accounting class. I foolishly ended up with a concentration in finance and accounting, for various reasons including course availability. Given my background, this was not a particularly good way to spend my money. I would have taken Weiss's Taxes course and Pastor's Portfolio Management course and maybe Rajan's Int'l Corp Fin class and skipped all the others (30116, 30117, 30130, 35100, 35200). (Although I would have considered 30117 with Sapra.)
  • Steered clear of Commercializing Innovation and taken PE Finance with Kaplan or Morse.
  • Taken basic Stats or Regression instead of Time Series. Back when I was young and foolish and took "challenge everything" seriously I thought it would be silly to repeat what I already knew. I should have just gone for the easy A.
  • Econ requirement. For those of you with good Econ backgrounds there really is no good solution to the Micro requirement. I went with 33501 as a substitute which was definitely an easy A but left me feeling a little hollow.
  • Taken Negotiations and maybe Eply's Managerial class (forgot official name and too lazy to look it up, one of those 38001 courses or something) and more "soft" courses.
  • Taken Competitive Strategy with Bertrand.

Job-wise, at one point I thought I perhaps should have skipped the IM internship altogether but I'm currently very glad that I didn't. (See, too fickle am I.) And it has crossed my mind that I wish I had just recruited for a corporate finance job last fall but I think I would be quite depressed at this point had I made that compromise. I do wish that I had been a little more mentally and intellectually prepared for recruiting in my first year. With the pregnancy and the career detour while I figured out my life and applied to bschool pre-MBA, I was pretty scattered and unprepared for internship recruiting. I am damn lucky I got a position. And then with the second pregnancy etc I wasn't in much better shape for full-time. I do wish I had never bothered to pitch a stock just for the sake of having one to pitch and that I had not been pregnant in my second year.*


It would have been much better for my husband if he had stayed in Seattle and I had relocated with Baby Y but that would have been hell on all of us, so I'm not sure whether I would have done that differently. I would not have changed being pretty selective about my socializing and putting my family first but I do occasionally wish I had had more freedom on that front while I was here.

So for what it's worth, that's that.

*Only because I didn't have a job offer, otherwise, it would have been perfect. In fact I really wish I had applied to bschool a couple years earlier than I did and had my first baby in my 2nd year with a job offer in hand. Not that you can really plan these things, of course!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Being a new student in the Booth Evening Program, a fin/acctg person, and a female, I can't thank you enough for your valuable insights (as always).