There’s nothing like writing your first blog post from the side of the highway, while waiting for a tow truck! Going back to school teaches you to make the most of any opportunity. It’s amazing the work you can squeeze into the found quiet moments of the day — at the breakfast table at 6 am, over lunch, on the elliptical at the gym. I’ve become a master of creative studying. To some, having your car lose power while driving on I-85 would be a nightmare. Lucky for me, I always have my class work with me. It was a forced study hall!

It’s crazy to think that at this time last year, I was preparing to take the GMAT again. Yes, it took me twice to get my scores where I wanted them to be. I was an art history major in college, more concerned with the musings of Willem De Kooning than calculus or economics. Over the years, I pieced together a rudimentary understanding of business and cultivated a wide portfolio of skills. But something was missing. I needed school-taught quantitative skills, a new lexicon and a bigger compass with which to navigate the paths of my future. Duke was the answer for me. I knew that if I was going to spend the time and money to go back to school, I wanted the best North Carolina had to offer: the best faculty, the best curriculum, the best cohort. One of the most important things for me was that fact that the Weekend Executive program is only 1.5 years.

To be honest, it was easy to choose Duke. They worked with me. I loved that I could reach out to an individual, the most incredible admissions counselor — Andy Medlin. None of the other programs I considered had an Andy. He guided me through the process, was available when I needed him, put me in contact with alumni and professors, etc.

One of my favorite college professors once said, “Do something that changes everything.” For me, Duke is just that. It’s forced me to push myself beyond my comfort zone, encouraged me to think differently, and exposed me to ideas and concepts I’d not considered before. Crazy as it may sound, as I stand here, almost halfway through the program, I can’t wait for the next terms. New challenges and opportunities await.