I initially applied to 5 MBA programs. How did I come up with my list of 5? My approach was probably the least calculated out there — I simply took suggestions from people I trust and respect. Fuqua made the list because of a great friend who endorsed the program whole-heartedly (and I’d never met someone more passionate about their MBA program).

But I think it’s important to note that as the 5 programs came into scope, I continually tried to identify if the school was somewhere I could thrive, somewhere I could learn and grow, and ultimately somewhere I could be happy.

Fox Center

Fuqua's Fox Center -- where I also happened to write this blog post.

With Fuqua, I remember a very clear moment when this all came together.

I arrived early in the morning for my on-campus interview on a cold day in March (one of the few days that it snowed last year). I’d never been to North Carolina and was largely taking it all in and trying to envision myself and my family here. With an hour to spare and very few people on campus that early, I strolled down the main hall and ended up at the Fox Center.

It was quiet there (which I’ve since learned isn’t usually the case as it’s normally filled with students eating, studying, and socializing). But as I sat there and looked out the massive 30 foot windows with the snow on the ground, the trees in the background, and the sun just starting to peak through the clouds, I had a kind of premonition. My mind fast-forwarded through time and I could literally see myself there: studying and learning, hiking on the trails just outside the windows, networking and recruiting, socializing, and enjoying Fuqua Fridays with my family and friends.

The rest of that March day was filled with interviews, class visits, and campus tours. (Visit the admissions events calendar to learn about upcoming campus visits.) It was great to see Fuqua first-hand, and as expected I found sharp faculty, great curriculum, solid students, and so on. But somehow those few quiet moments in the Fox Center were what really sealed the deal for me. From then on, Fuqua was where I needed to be.

Since coming to Fuqua this past August, I’ve enjoyed many activities in the Fox Center. I don’t know what Mr. and Mrs. Fox were hoping for when they donated funds to help construct this area, but amazingly it’s a core component of every Fuquan’s experience. My assumption is that everyone spends at least a few minutes in the Fox Center every day. And it’s still my favorite area of the business school.