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MBA Business School Careers

An Ambition of MBA students

Whilst familiar with the more common collective nouns to describe a group – Prides of Lions, Colonies of Penguins – the English language runs riot for other beasts, birds, people or things. A Shrewdness of Apes and a Murder of Crows leave little doubt about the characteristics of the group being described.

So how best can we characterise a group of MBA students, newly arrived this week at business school? An Ambition of MBA students perhaps.

From Manhattan to Manchester, campuses are springing to life after the summer, and schools get the confirmation on their applicant yield as admitted applicants transform into students.

As a good article in Business Week explained last week, the orientation process at many MBA programs has become an education in itself. Crash courses in accounting and second languages vie with career orientation and team-building, whilst social events break the ice for students and their spouses.

At the Vlerick Leuven Gent Management School, this week was the chance for their Class of ’09 to meet face to face. Students from over 30 countries were welcomed by the school’s new Dean, Philippe Haspeslagh, and recent months of social networking on Facebook gave way to personal introductions and program orientation. An Anticipation of MBA students.

Amphitheatres fill with eager faces, asking themselves ‘how do I match up to the rest of the class?’, and ‘what kind of network will I be building in the next 12 months?’ And as students pair off, with three minutes to interview and then present their recently introduced neighbour, the MBA promise of an internationally diverse group of talent quickly asserts itself.

From Moldovian entrepreneurship and Canadian investment banking to non-profit work on CO2 emissions and a national karate team, the Vlerick MBA class has serious credentials. And the fun-loving side of the group is soon in evidence as they enjoy the InBev sponsored school lounge before discovering the thriving social scene amidst the backdrop of one of Europe’s oldest universities. An Exuberance of MBA students.

Welcoming the group and setting out the MBA program that lies ahead, Prof. David Venter adds his own unique experience to the classroom mix. A psychologist by training, Venter headed the South African Communication Service, ultimately working side by side with Nelson Mandela to achieve a negotiated and peaceful end to the apartheid era. He has worked with multinationals and trade unions, police services and governments and his insights into human behaviour, leadership, communication and negotiation are the stuff of business education dreams. An Inspiration of MBA students.

Much anticipated at any school is the input from Head of Career Services. How does the MBA job market look, and have we all invested in our professional futures just as the markets are heading south? Mary Roll paints a positive picture for the general management MBA in Europe. Companies are thinking about succession planning, the IT and biotech cluster around Brussels is bullish, the class that has just graduated is reporting a healthy increase in salary and benefits… A Reassurance of MBA students

So for this group and MBA students around the world beginning their MBA adventure, congratulations and good luck. As the volatility of the financial markets demonstrates, the best investment we can make is in ourselves. An ROI of MBA students.


For editors and journalists, feel free to contact us about this topic and other ideas that appear on the this SymondsGSB blog.


About symondsgsb

Matt is chief editor of MBA50.com, a website dedicated to the world's outstanding business schools. He is an internationally recognised business and graduate school expert, consulting to the world’s top business schools, and has written for many of the world’s leading publications including : Forbes, The Economist, BusinessWeek, BBC, Newsweek, CNBC, America Economia, Washington Post, The Independent, Boston Globe, Handelsblatt, 21st Century Herald, South China Morning Post, Vedomosti, San Francisco Chronicle, Expansion, Beijing Daily. Matt was Co-Founder of the QS World MBA Tour Matt is co-author of Getting the M.B.A. Admissions Edge, a B-school admissions bestseller sponsored by Goldman Sachs and McKinsey. His new individual school guides will be available in the fall.


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