A Day in Fall 2011:
While working on a project at a large distributor’s Global Headquarters in fall 2011, a Vice President of Logistics and Supply Chain approached my desk to discuss an upcoming presentation themed “Business Gets Social.” He asked me to help develop strategic recommendations on how digital media impacts supply chain management. I was not surprised that the VP approached me to assist with the presentation. Yet, I was surprised at how much I learned from helping to create this presentation. The project showed me that I have a passion for searching for solutions to a wide variety of business problems. Yet, it also became clear that I needed to strengthen my finance, marketing, and accounting skills to continue my career progression. While I added value to the project based on my supply chain background, I could not create a strong impact with strategic recommendations for other areas of business.
This experience led to some serious introspection, and I concluded that entering an MBA program was the solution. I started a journey to search for a program that would suit me best and at the same time, allow me to reach out to the world to create an impact.
MBA is the Solution: Winter 2011-2012
My work at this distribution company made me realize that I wanted to transition out of supply chain management and take a more global strategic management role. I aligned my short and long term goals. To achieve these goals, I started learning about Duke’s MBA program. I attended 3 open houses at 3 top tier MBA schools and one of them was Duke. Initially, it was hard for me to justify the commute between New York City and Fuqua since there are competitive choices in the city. But Sr. Associate Dean and Professor Jennifer Francis’ talk on macro-economics and globalization during Fuqua’s open house made me realize that my goals exactly align with the offerings from Fuqua.
Why Fuqua: Spring 2012
Becoming a student in Duke’s MBA program was critical to obtaining my professional aspirations. Duke’s unique opportunities to learn about global markets, and its optional strategy and marketing concentrations would allow for my continued professional development. To achieve my future career goals, I need to effectively understand and analyze globalization challenges in supply chain management. More companies are taking an international approach to find the best vendors for their supply chain and also targeting new customers in different markets like Russia, China, India and Brazil. Fuqua’s global reach and diverse alumni can directly help me build a strong network in the supply chain strategy eco system, and in turn allow me to create an impact in countries with developing economies.
Now at Fuqua: Spring 2013
While growing professionally, Fuqua is also helping me in my personal development. I am excited to share my journey with a diverse group of experienced students that I am getting to know both inside and outside of the classroom. Meeting new people has always been the foundation of my personal growth. For example, I look forward to Duke’s Global Academic Travel Experience (GATE) which will allow me to work with team leaders in China. This trip will examine how local life is affected by global economic growth.
At Fuqua, I’m also learning more about how I may help my native country. In India, I personally experienced the opportunities and challenges of living in a developing country while rapid economic development occurred. Though India is one of the BRICS nations, with a fast GDP growth rate, there is a large percentage of the population who still do not have access to basic services due to lack of proper infrastructure and corruption. I want to continue with my social work at Apne-Aap (self-help), a grassroots organization in India working to end sex trafficking by increasing choices for at-risk girls and women. Fuqua’s ability to attract speakers to talk on social entrepreneurship and experienced career coaches are providing me with the exposure I need to create a robust monitoring and evaluation system for organizations like Apne-Aap. This is indeed an invaluable experience. So far, Fuqua is supporting my dream to add value to this world and make it a better place to live.