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Looking North? Here's One American's MBA Experience in Canada

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An MBA is a major investment in your life, future and finances. With some colleges requesting more than $100K for tuition, it’s easy to see why students are looking at schools outside of the States when considering their degree options.

Alyssa King, a Texas native and a natural globetrotter, chose to pursue her MBA education north of the border at UBC Sauder School of Business at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, BC. While there were many factors that went into her decision, ultimately, King chose to study in Canada because she feels it will take her career opportunities to broader horizons around the globe with multinational companies.

What made you choose to pursue your MBA with the UBC Sauder School of Business?

Location and the international component. UBC Sauder’s MBA program requires a global immersion experience. It is a program where a group of students are assigned a real-world business project. They go to different countries for two weeks and present to the client at the end of their trip. I took classes in Tokyo, Japan, met with companies and learned about their businesses and practices.

What set UBC Sauder apart from other prospective schools?

I felt that UBC Sauder did a very good job at presenting the cultural diversity of the students. Also, I liked the growing trend that more women were in the program compared to other MBA programs that are dominated by males. When I did receive MBA information from UBC Sauder, items felt more personalized compared to information from other MBA schools.

What made you gravitate towards studying in Vancouver?

Vancouver is known for the great work-life balance mentality. You have the ocean, mountains, and it is a very outdoors-[centric] city. UBC has a great research reputation, which I believed I might be able to leverage when applying for jobs. UBC Sauder’s name is not as well known in the United States compared to other MBA schools, so I know I will use the UBC brand when discussing my MBA education.

How has your education at UBC Sauder taught you to leverage your MBA into viable career opportunities?

My MBA has exposed me to a lot of great research and teachings that I believe will help me in my career. My undergrad did lack these options, so I was happy to find that there was a designated staff just for MBA students in the career center. You can use them as much or as little as you want, but I find they are helpful in talking career goals through.

What has been your experience with the professors, lectures and classmates in your independent and team-oriented studies?

We have had some great professors and lectures. They make you want to come to class and participate every day. I think I lucked out with the classmates that I ended up with. It is a top-notch group of students who are willing to participate, challenge you and overall are a very inclusive group of individuals. It was challenging at first to get used to everyone’s style of work and the different cultures present, but you quickly learn and adapt to whatever group you are in. I’ll be able to apply this experience directly in my career. [There is a] class dynamic that we all want each other to succeed.

What would you say to encourage prospective students who are curious about the UBC Sauder School of Business?

UBC Sauder offers a unique experience for anyone who comes and they want you to find your own path here. They are there to help you when you need, but they want you to grow personally and professionally during the program. The program is very unique and different—the experiences are completely different from a school in the United States. I wanted to challenge myself more and step outside of the box. What I’m gaining here will give me a better leg up if I were to go back and get a job in the US. 

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