Duke Daytime MBA Student Blog
A Week in the Life of a Fuqua MBA Student
Someone recently asked me to describe a typical day as a Fuqua MBA student. One thing I’ve learned over the last 7 months is that days move at lightning speed. Almost every student (myself included!) juggles academic work, recruiting efforts and club events. Throw in a social life too and it’s no surprise that each day quickly fills up with plans.
Given the pace at which days move at Fuqua, I wanted to give you a holistic view of what a typical week looks like and the natural ebbs and flows of being an MBA student here.
On Monday mornings, I typically head into school at 8:00 a.m. to grab breakfast and catch up on emails before class. At 9:00 a.m., I go to my first class of the week: Foundations of Strategy. This class combines the case method of teaching with a number of strategic consulting frameworks to evaluate the attractiveness of different industries and companies.
After class, I typically grab lunch with my friends to swap stories about our weekends. After lunch, my classmates and I head to a seminar room for Management Communications, where we learn how to be more effective presenters. There is no break between this class and the next—Global Financial Management—so all class preparation needs to be done in advance.
After a jam-packed day of classes, I’m done at 5:15 p.m., so I either head home to relax, or stay at school and discuss the week’s deliverables with my team. Such a busy day means I sleep well on Monday nights!
On Tuesdays, I don’t have class until 3:00 p.m. I typically start my morning at the gym before heading to Fuqua to finish off some cases or study for any upcoming quizzes. This is a valuable time to not only catch up on academic work, but also to have coffee chats with second-year classmates to learn what they did over their summer internships. In the evening, I usually find myself at a student club event—either a training session organized by the Marketing Club, a group run facilitated by the Running Club, or a wine tasting hosted by the Wine Club!
Fuqua students don’t have classes on Wednesday, so it’s a great time to do some preparation for the following two days or catch up on emails and recruiting. This is often my most productive day as far as team meetings go. Because there isn’t class, conferences and seminars are usually held on Wednesdays. They provide a number of different opportunities to hear from speakers and industry experts and also to network.
The class schedule on Thursday is the same as Mondays. I have 3 classes in addition to various club events and team meetings.
I usually start my Friday off with a run on the Al Buhrer trail—an excellent cross country running trail just a stone’s throw from Fuqua. Fridays are the same class schedule as Tuesdays, so I don’t have class till 3:00 p.m. I spend my morning doing some class preparation, catching up with friends, having coffee chats with second-years, and attending—or organizing—club events. Once class finishes at 5:15 p.m., it’s time for Fuqua Friday! This is a weekly event where students and faculty kick back with a beer and some food in the Fox Center. It’s a fantastic way to end the week and catch up with classmates.