Category Archives: Diversity

Reflections of a Booth MBA: Family, Student, and Alumni Community

As I’m wrapping up my last quarter here at Chicago Booth, my mind is running through a whirlwind of what seems like far-off memories.  The drive from Colorado, first day of classes, investment banking recruiting, trips across the world, and the list goes on.  Contemplating what I imagine will eventually seem like a small glimpse in time, I find myself reflecting on one aspect of this experience that I feel is illustrative of the whole.

My first year at Business School was tough.  Awash with a number of competing tasks—moving to a new city, navigating the waters of recruiting, maintaining a family, nurturing lifelong friendships—it was critical that I had the right network in place to help alleviate some of the stress, so that I may successfully emerge from this experience.  More often than not, I came to find that members of the African American MBA Association (AAMBAA) were more than willing to fill this gap.  AAMBAA has served as more than just a professional resource, it has been my family. 

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Booth through the decades: Impact of an MBA in Africa, with Earl Van Zyl ‘07

In this second installment of our Booth through the decades series, we speak with Earl Van Zyl, ’07, who works in investment management in South Africa. Earl chose to pursue his MBA despite the observed differences in educational expectations between South Africa and the US. Whilst the chartered accounting qualification is a more popular and recognized post-graduate degree in his home country, Earl saw a unique need for and opportunity in pursuing the Booth MBA: here is his take on how his experience stands out from the rest.

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Behind the scenes of the Japan Spring Break Trek 2018

After coming back to Chicago from Japan Trek 2018—the experience of a lifetime—I received one email. It said: “Dear Atsushi, We had such a wonderful time in Japan and you put in so much effort it was just wonderful and we cannot say thank you enough for all your energy. Thank you.” It was sent by the Japan Trek  participants with a gift card.

 

I was so excited  that I immediately showed it to the other Trek leaders, and realized they had also received the same message! What more could I ask for as a Trek leader?

While there were some challenges to organize the trek, it was an incredibly rewarding experience. The thank you note reminded me of what made the trip so special. Although this could be self-applauding, the beauty of the Japan Trek truly came from the diversity of experiences of the trek leaders and how well we worked together.

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The Exchange Student Experience: Barcelona to Chicago

I wanted to talk a little about my Booth experience as an international exchange student. I’m originally from El Salvador, coming to Chicago Booth from IESE Business School in Barcelona, Spain. I’ve worked in several Latin American countries and I spent my summer internship in Barcelona, so I’m writing about both academic and cultural perspectives. As opposed to Booth, IESE is a case method school (much like Harvard) and each method has its pros and cons, but this blog is not about comparing. It’s about my experience at Booth as an outsider.

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#BlackOutDay

In honor of Black History Month, the African American MBA Association (AAMBAA) organized a Black Out Day — dedicated to dressing in all black to call attention to the continued struggle for equality for ALL in America. In addition to addressing the fight for justice within Black communities, students wanted to promote awareness of social inequities, and empower those from marginalized communities. 

Learn more about Booth student group AAMBAA »