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Ask a Duke Fuqua Student

This topic has 21 expert replies and 75 member replies
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ai86 Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
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Post Fri Jun 08, 2012 6:26 pm
Hi everyone,

I am so sorry for my lack of response. I know this is not a good reason but emails from this thread somehow didn't get into my inbox earlier. Thanks for your understanding. I'll make sure I reply quickly from now on.

-Irene-

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Irene
MBA, Class of 2013
The Fuqua School of Business, Duke University

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ssinghrajora Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
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Post Tue Jun 26, 2012 7:56 pm
Hello Irene

I have worked in Business Development and Operations for coal mining projects and power projects in India and Indonesia. My work included acquisition of new targets, project development and management. I want to change carrer and get into consulting (if possible into energy vertical/ acquisitions).

I am looking for a program which has corporate strategy as its strength and I find that Duke's strategy area is one of the leading in the world. I would like to know whether a combination of my experience and a Duke MBA can get me where I want to go?

Thank you in advance.

Shailendra
India/ Indonesia
750/4.5, 5 yrs (2.5 yrs international)

ai86 Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
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Post Tue Jun 26, 2012 8:17 pm
Hi Shailendra,

Most of my friends who land a consulting internship/full-time came from various different backgrounds. So, I think that you would also be able to enter consulting as long as you can make a compelling story into why you would be a good fit in the consulting company. Fuqua is one of the core schools for Deloitte, BCG and I think McKInsey also (but please check again). And other top consulting firms also recruit at Duke.

As to your specific background and entry into the consulting field, I don't think that I have the capability to give you a good assessment. =(

I hope this helps.

Cheers,
Irene

PS: it's interesting that we have somewhat similar background - I used to live in Indonesia and my pre-MBA experience is related to the mining industry. =)

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Irene
MBA, Class of 2013
The Fuqua School of Business, Duke University

ssinghrajora Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
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Post Wed Jun 27, 2012 10:10 pm
Hi Irene

Thank you for your reply. What was your work profile in mining? Since our careers share two important traits, I believe that you might be the perfect person to answer my queries.

Does Fuqua’s vastly diverse class consist of many students with backgrounds similar as yours (ours)? I mean students from the verticals of energy and extractive minerals. Have you recently seen any GATE programs directed towards these verticals?

Thank you.

Shailendra
India/ Indonesia
750/4.5, 5 yrs (2.5 yrs international)

ai86 Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
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Post Thu Jun 28, 2012 12:58 am
Hi Shailendra,

I worked as a Project Engineer at a manufacturing company. We produce pulleys which is typically used in mines and oil sands. I know of a few people who are interested in entering the alternative energy industry post-MBA. Fuqua had an Energy focused Career Symposium last year - so I am sure it's a big post-MBA career at Fuqua. As far as pre-MBA experience, only one friend came to mind. He came from a PE firm which focuses on energy & alternative energy. I am sure there's more than one - I just happened not to know many of them..

And as for GATE, I don't know of any GATE programs which is specifically directed towards these verticals. However, if most of the students enrolled in the GATE program is interested, they most likely could arrange a visit to those companies. I did GATE Lat-AM; at the start of semester, our GATE leader made a poll to see which industries people are interested in and arranged visit to companies in those specific industries.

Hope this helps. =)

_________________
Irene
MBA, Class of 2013
The Fuqua School of Business, Duke University

ssinghrajora Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
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Post Fri Jun 29, 2012 11:44 pm
Hi Irene

Again, thank you for the very useful information. Right now I am researching about MBA schools for applying in this fall. There are few schools with strong strategy departments, and among them Fuqua clearly stands out in both 'strategy' and 'energy'. That's why I am very inquisitive about it.

Sincere thanks.

Shailendra
India/ Indonesia
750/4.5, 5 yrs (2.5 yrs international)

kwilson219 Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
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Post Wed Aug 01, 2012 9:59 am
Hi Niladri and Irene,

I have a few questions that I was hoping you could answer.

1. One reason I want to pursue an MBA is to develop quantitative skills related to business. What specific quantitative classes have you taken during your MBA and what valuable skills and lessons have you taken away from them that you will use in your post MBA career?
2. Over the summer, what internship(s) did you have a chance to participate in and how did the career development center at Fuqua support you in finding an internship?
3. I read that the Fuqua student body is a very tight knit community. Could you elaborate on this reputation and what makes the Fuqua community unique?
4. What events or classes have allowed you to expand your networking base? What type of activities have you participated in, through the Fuqua MBA network, that have helped you develop professional relationships and connections?
5. If you could give one piece of advice to someone applying to Fuqua, what would that be?

Thank you for your input

Kurt

ai86 Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
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Post Wed Aug 01, 2012 6:32 pm
Hi Kurt,

Those are very good questions and I will try by best to answer them.

1. I took Managerial Finance, Accounting, Statistics, and Operations (some Quant - not much). Given my Engineering background, I don't have much knowledge in Finance or Accounting. Thus, I found the classes useful and will certainly help me in my future career, especially if I decide to pursue a career in Finance.

2. I am currently finishing up my internship at Accenture and throughout the recruiting process, the Career Management Center (CMC) at Fuqua has always been there to support me. They helped me out with my resume, mock interviews or simply there to listen in to my worries. However, one thing to note is that you have to be pro-active to make the most of the CMC. They are always there to help you out but they will not check on you everyday (or so to speak) to see how you're doing. There're 440 students afterall =)

3. Fuqua is a very tight knit community. Everyone knows everyone (or almost... ). Most people are also very helpful. During my first week at Fuqua, friends whom I just met then, helped me assemble my furnitures, drove me to Walmart to get appliances, etc. It's really amazing. Any question that you have about anything related to Fuqua or general stuff, you can post to the FB group and someone will answer within the next hour (or minutes even). Questions from: how to get driving license to where the party's at tonight.

4. There are a lot of activities that you can participate in at Fuqua. There's company presentations and networkin nights which allows you to meet some of the professionals from the companies you're interested in. There's also student lead initiatives such as the Consulting Symposium, Marketing Symposium, etc. I am not sure if this is what you were asking about - if not, please do let me know and I'll try to address your question better.

5. Talk to current students and visit Fuqua if you can =). The teamwork and community at Fuqua is something that has to be experienced as it's really hard to explain.

_________________
Irene
MBA, Class of 2013
The Fuqua School of Business, Duke University

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becnil MBA Student
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Post Fri Aug 03, 2012 5:07 pm
I fully agree with ai86 on this topic; she has already summed up the key points, but I will try to add in a bit.

1. Our core courses in Fuqua are designed to provide a balance of strong quantitative and qualitative understanding to a diverse community of students. So, irrespective of your background, you can be assured that you will get a solid quantitative base in your first two terms. And then, through your electives, you can choose as much quant focus as you want - in terms of modeling, you can take Decision Models, Strategic Modeling; if you love Operations, you can go with Supply Chain Management; if you like quantitative Finance/Accounting, there is a whole array of classes that you can take and may also concentrate in one of these areas.

2. I am interning this summer with Xylem Inc., a water technology and services company, in their Strategy & Business Development group. I am working on building a business case for Xylem to enter an evolving market and launch a new product line. As ai86 mentioned, the CMC was there for us all along, helping with applications, resumes, cover letters etc. However, I will also say that my classmates and alum were great assets throughout my recruiting efforts. Leveraging each other's backgrounds and experiences, we were able to collectively achieve success in securing the desired summer positions.

Good luck.
Niladri.

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MBA 2013, Duke University, Fuqua School of Business

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mappleby285 Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
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Post Sat Aug 11, 2012 5:58 pm
Can a current student comment on what the schedule is like with the 6 week terms? My wife is in grad school right now on the quarters system, my undergrad was done on semesters. It seems like even with the 10 week long quarters the classes feel very rushed for my wife. How does it work having only 6 weeks long for each term?

becnil MBA Student
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Post Sat Aug 11, 2012 8:29 pm
In short, the Terms are going to fly by very fast, so be prepared for it. There is literally no comparison with the Semester system (which I had both in my UG and my MS). But at the same time, you will be learning a ton of topics, which will allow you to determine where you want to specialize in your second year. This is an area where Fuqua differentiates heavily from other top business schools.

You will be busy with a lot of teamwork, individual assignments, mid-terms, and of course socializing ! The best way to cope up with this is to get ready and not be shocked. Everything will be just fine !

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MBA 2013, Duke University, Fuqua School of Business

coreaspirant Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
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Post Mon Sep 03, 2012 3:53 am
Hi

I want to get into Corporate Finance, with no prior experience in it.

1) While reading and understanding the roles, I have got a good understanding of the roles in Corporate Finance. In the short term goal, do we have to be VERY SPECIFIC abt the profile (such as a particular profile name - for example investment management analyst ), and roles and responsibilities?

2) According to you, which courses and clubs can be most helpful in the transition?

3) What are the various things which you feel to be the best part of Duke's culture and which you feel had an impact on you as a person?

4) This question might sound stupid - but every MBA has leadership courses. While going through the courses on Fuqua Business School's site, I couldn't get their details?

Regards

becnil MBA Student
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Post Mon Sep 03, 2012 4:43 pm
Hello,

Here are my responses (in italics):

I want to get into Corporate Finance, with no prior experience in it.

1) While reading and understanding the roles, I have got a good understanding of the roles in Corporate Finance. In the short term goal, do we have to be VERY SPECIFIC abt the profile (such as a particular profile name - for example investment management analyst ), and roles and responsibilities?

[i]I don't think so. My answer is going to be subjective, but I believe if you can demonstrate your understanding of the industry and a basic focus, that should be fine. A specific position is probably not needed. Since you do not have a background in Corp Finance, make sure you answer your rationale and a logical progression to this new industry - e.g. tie your intended roles to your background, interest etc., and answer why you want to go there
[/i]
2) According to you, which courses and clubs can be most helpful in the transition?

Of course Corporate Finance, Adv Corporate Finance and other specific finance electives that you will delve into once you start the program. There is a Finance Club at Fuqua which will get you started, and then based on your specific interests within Finance, you can focus on other specialized clubs within Finance (e.g. EVCC)

3) What are the various things which you feel to be the best part of Duke's culture and which you feel had an impact on you as a person?

The spirit of collaboration through "Team Fuqua". We live by this principle day in and day out. The way I have seen my classmates and the senior year look after one another is amazing. Not only within Fuqua, but even outside, I have seen Fuquans upholding their collaborative, inclusive qualities, and I have felt very proud. Accessibility is also something I have found to be amazing - from the Dean to the Professors to alum, I have found a lot of warmth; people want to hear from you, and are open to feedback and suggestions for improvement. Finally, the focus on leadership development at Fuqua has been a unique experience for me. Everything here is student-run: you will have much more leadership opportunities than you can possibly undertake, and the environment truly inspires you to lead. COLE Fellowship is a very special program at Fuqua that focuses on leadership development by associating SYs with the FY teams.

4) This question might sound stupid - but every MBA has leadership courses. While going through the courses on Fuqua Business School's site, I couldn't get their details?

You don't necessarily need to take Leadership courses to learn to be a leader. In fact, I think you will learn it better by actually doing it. Referring to my answer above, Fuqua has tremendous opportunities for you to lead in many different avenues. That being said, we do have leadership courses. Refer to http://www.fuqua.duke.edu/student_resources/academics/concentrations/leadership_ethics/

Regards

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MBA 2013, Duke University, Fuqua School of Business

coreaspirant Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
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Post Tue Sep 04, 2012 4:39 am
Thanks a lot Becnil

Regards

ai86 Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
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Post Tue Sep 04, 2012 5:11 am
Hi,

I would like to second Becnil on his "Team Fuqua" experience. I think Fuqua does a great job in creating an atmosphere that fosters a teamwork and collaborative environment, inside and outside Fuqua. Looking back in my past year, I am completely thankful for my first year and second year friends (now 2012 alumni) who have helped me through everything, from getting settled into Durham to school and career questions. In regards with the faculty members, they are all open to suggestions and replies to your emails in a matter of hours or so (at least in my experience). The Associate Dean and Career Center take part in our skits (Fuqua Vision) and other student activities.

In regards with leadership courses, I completely agree with Becnil also that there are a lot of avenues at Fuqua in which you could practice and improve your leadership skills. Some of these are the various Fellows, GATE leaders, student clubs and many others.

Cheers,
ai

_________________
Irene
MBA, Class of 2013
The Fuqua School of Business, Duke University

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