As a prospective or incoming student, I know you have a lot of questions. Great news – I have a lot of answers! Not only have I worked as an Admissions Ambassador during my first year at Fuqua, spending time in the Admissions Lounge with prospective students, but I am also one of two students handling inquiries from our “Ask a Student” form that’s on the Fuqua website.
I’ve gotten everything from very general questions to the more specific, so here’s a look at what I’ve been talking about to prospective students in person, on the phone, and via email:
Q: Why did you choose Fuqua?
A: I chose Fuqua because of the “Team Fuqua” culture. Teamwork and a focus on collaborative learning really distinguish Fuqua from many other top business schools. The work we do on team case assignments, sharing expertise and learning from each other really stands out to recruiters. It’s what keeps us sharp and aligned with a real-world business environment. No matter what field students go into, having experience with both intensive individual business modules and team case studies speaks volumes about our ability to work on cross-functional projects and to lead others.
Q: What has surprised you about Fuqua since you started school?
A: First, I really wasn’t aware of all of the opportunities for close-knit work with the Career Management Center. Fuqua integrates sessions with the CMC into our core Management Communications classes during the first two terms of the year. I think those management communications classes focused on team consulting projects has definitely sharpened my skills as a leader, even beyond anything I ever learned while doing public speaking via my local Toastmasters club back home in Richmond, VA.
Second, there are a lot of career-prep programs that I had no idea existed before coming to school. For example, I’m transitioning into marketing and the second-year students hold a six-week class that prepares you for upcoming internship interviews. They are able to give you a heads up on the types of questions particular companies ask and even allow you a chance to do a mock interview at the end of the program with alumni who actually work at your company of interest.
Third, the second-year class has been extremely helpful, and I think that’s all because of the “Team Fuqua” culture. It has really made me happy about my decision to come to Fuqua. Students I know who are going into consulting and other sectors have seen the same positive encouragement from fellow students. All first-year students are able to do “informational interviews” with the second-year students so they can be on top of their game when networking and interviewing with companies.
Q: This “Team Fuqua” you speak of … is it for real?
A: I asked myself the same question before I came to Fuqua! I thought, sure, teamwork, uh huh. But it’s quite different from undergrad! Here, everyone wants to succeed and everyone wants to be here. Besides, who would go through the whole application/GMAT process without a real desire to go to B-school?
I’ve seen the “Team Fuqua” culture in action in so many ways. Classmates helped me so much in my job search and I’m “paying it forward” by helping them more now, too! Classmates that are even competing for the same job help each other prepare for interviews, and my classmates were a big help to me in understanding the material in some of the core classes.
Q: How do you manage the work/life balance?
A: I manage it quite well, thank you. But seriously, it is completely manageable! At the beginning of your first term, you make your own personal development plan, and a second-year student helps you and your team keep on track of your personal goals throughout the first year.
If you want to make exercise a priority, then do it! If you want to be sure to keep in touch with friends and spend enough time with your family, make it happen! Everything can work out if you make the effort. Many of us come from places far from Durham, but we are still able to make trips home and keep up with the activities that are important to us.