By Daniel Kim, MBA’22
As I finish the first year of my MBA journey, I am overcome with mixed feelings. Feelings of relief, joy, sadness, excitement, fear, and as much as I hate to admit it, some regret.
I thought about last August when I was just beginning the program and meeting my core teammates for the first time, and before I know it, it is summer break! (it really is not a break though)
As a big introvert, I felt like a kid who just transferred to a new school. I had a lot of uncertainties, questions, anxieties, and adjustments I had to deal with in the next few months.
I thought about the guidance and advice I received from my second years that in hindsight I find were very relatable and helped me get through the first year, so I wanted to share it with future Kelleys.
- Time goes by very fast, and there will be more things to do than you have time for. The first year will pass by in the blink of an eye. You have to balance school, recruiting, a social life, family, hobbies, and whatever else you have going on. Everyone will have different priorities but make sure you know yours. Don’t let FOMO get the best of you. If you want to stay in and watch a movie after a long week of classes, do that instead of going to a party. Be friends with people you resonate with. It’s so much better if you stay “you” throughout your MBA journey.
- Network, network, network! It may seem daunting, especially if you’re an introvert, to speak to a total stranger for half an hour. The truth is, waiting until you feel ready isn’t going to make it easier. Start with the second years. We have been graciously welcomed into the Kelley family and we’re committed to doing the same. The sooner you do it, the better you will feel about networking with recruiters when the time comes. Sometimes it may feel like you’re not getting anything out of it but you just never know who will help you land that dream internship.
- Be ready for the opportunity you are looking for. Otherwise, you will not get it when it comes knocking on your door. This one is a personal story. I always wanted to work in Japan and was extremely excited when I saw some opportunities in Tokyo. Guess what the requirement was? I had to be business proficient in Japanese! I speak a little Japanese, but I wasn’t at the level they wanted so I had to give up that opportunity. Most opportunities may not require specific requirements like being fluent in another language. Try to figure out early where you want to be in the summer, and make sure you’re ready for it. If you want that consulting job, start mock casing ASAP. If you want a job in a specific function/industry, get connected with second-years who interned there and ask for help. You only get one internship so make it count!
I hope you found this helpful. If you ever need help with anything, reach out for help! The sooner you ask, the easier it is to get it resolved.