When I decided that I wanted to pursue an MBA, I had it clear in my mind that I wanted four things: a collaborative environment; a location that suited my personality; a strong curriculum in marketing; and a global perspective. Researching through the Internet was hard because almost all business schools claimed to offer what I was looking for. However, when I researched more deeply I found that the school that best offered these characteristics was Duke’s Fuqua School of Business. I investigated further, and after attending different information sessions, reading students’ blogs, talking to former and current students, and visiting the school, I decided that Fuqua was the perfect business school for me and that I was a good fit for Fuqua too.
The community and collaborative perspective is real at Fuqua. When I was applying, I wrote emails to current and past students to get an inside perspective of the school. I was pleasantly surprised to receive answers from all of them and to find that they were honestly wanting to help me, from connecting me to other students they thought could also help, to even inviting me to connect in person whenever I travel to Durham! This is something that I didn’t experience when researching other business schools. I felt that the “Team Fuqua” spirit was really inside every student and that this was the community I wanted to be a part of. It was not only something that was highlighted in a brochure—it was real and I experienced it first-hand.
Another important aspect when considering the MBA was the location. I felt that Durham was the perfect mix for me because of the size of the city, the weather, the cost of living, and its strategic location near major business areas. I wanted to live in a city that, while small enough to give me the feeling of real American life, was still vibrant, diverse, and had many amenities to enjoy with my classmates. In fact, something that also attracted me to Fuqua was its good location for outdoor activities that I enjoy. That’s why I hope to enroll in the Duke BOLD club because I not only love outdoor sports and activities, but I also believe that being part of this club will challenge me and let me learn from my classmates in difficult situations. Finally, I think that the location fosters the school spirit and a tight-knit community, but still provides easy access to major companies and major cities in the U.S.
Moreover, I was particularly attracted to Fuqua because it gave students the chance to choose a concentration without losing the general management approach to their overall coursework. In my case, I am interested in the marketing concentration, particularly the Product Management option. However, I wanted to be in a school that still had an important focus on general management education. I wanted to be challenged and explore different possibilities. Fuqua is a school that will let me do so because of its wide variety of elective courses—marketing, entrepreneurship, strategy, leadership—everything is possible at Fuqua. The broad base of knowledge and experiences that I can obtain from The Duke MBA will help me understand every side of the business. After talking with some students, I had a clear vision of how Fuqua could help me achieve all my goals, not only for my career in marketing, but also for my ultimate goal of making a difference and becoming a true “leader of consequence.”
Finally, I think that Fuqua is one of the most diverse business schools. I come from Lima, an emerging city that is experiencing an accelerated economic growth and is attracting investors from every part of the world. I wanted an MBA that would let me learn from classmates with different backgrounds, nationalities and perspectives. I believe Fuqua is exactly the place for that. I plan to take advantage of all the opportunities it offers to develop a global experience such as taking a GATE course and going to the Week-in-Cities trips. This way I’ll open my eyes to business practices in different parts of the world.