Alumni Experience Series: MIT Sloan Fellows MBA Student Life
So. So. So. Hello. Good morning, good afternoon, good evening. My name is donna levinson. And i have the privilege of being one of two assistant, deans responsible, for admissions at mit sloan. Am joined this morning here in cambridge. It is morning. By, one of my colleagues, katie radal. And a wonderful. Panel, of alums, for the sloan fellows mba program. I should also mention i'm also joined by another one of our colleagues. Jessica. Who will be helping us behind the scenes so you have a great group of people here today. To spend a little bit of time with you. Giving you some insight into what the mit, sloan. Fellows mba program, is all about. First though. I would like to begin. By telling you that. About we are very much a mission, driven school. I think that's a really important point to start with you can read the mission. For me the mission is really all about. Identifying. And tackling the world's biggest problems. This has been the mission. It says here of the sloan school it actually aligns very well with overall mit, and it's been that way for a very long time. And i'm guessing that everybody, on this call today can agree. That at this very moment, there are lots of problems. Globally, that need to be solved and so there's really no better place, to be. Than. Mit, and mit, sloan, to be in a classroom. To be talking about what's happening in this world and how to truly make it a better place. As you can imagine, this past year we've been faced. With an incredible. Number of challenges, it began last march. I don't know about all of you but for me as you can see from my surroundings, i am in my, dining room. And i have been here since march 12th. Truth be told i actually float around the house a little bit, but fundamentally. I have been here in my house since march. Doing our admissions, related, work. As a school, real quickly, we did in fact. Open the campus, in the fall so sloan fellows, program which starts in the summer last summer was all remote. But by fall. We had actually, worked. Very very hard, to be able to. Come up with a plan to open up campus. To all students who wanted to come and were able to come. With health and safety, of the entire. Community. Um. Top of mind. As you can see here we practice the four w's, wear your mask watch your distance keep your distancing. Wash your hands and watch your own daily, your health. And that's exactly what we do on campus. Unfortunately. For, all of you in order to keep campus density, down and to maintain. The safety, we do not, have guests on campus we haven't had them in the fall. And we won't be having them in the spring either, but for those who are in fact on campus, they are wearing a mask all of the time. We have people maintaining, at least six foot distance, and that includes, in the classroom. We are encouraging, people to wash their hands at all time, and in fact we're asking people to complete a daily attestation. Before showing up on campus. And, actually. Um, they are testing. Twice, a week within a. A three to four day span. In order to. Just ensure that we have the safest, environment, possible. Um. In terms of, what, we're going to be saying about the future, i think, one of the things that we have learned through this experience, is, the need to continue, to communicate. And as we're planning for next year and as all your all of you are thinking about that i can certainly commit. To as soon as decisions, are made we will communicate, them. We'll communicate. Um you know the rationale, behind them, and also most likely caveat, them that we're making this decision, now however, should things change. Um because as we have if we haven't learned anything in the past year at all, i think we have all learned that things really can change. With that. Again i really just wanted to say hello and welcome all of you i'm going to hand it over to katie, and katie is going to facilitate, a panel. Um with this amazing, group of alumni, panelists. I won't be back so i want to thank everybody.
For Those of you celebrating. Thanksgiving, next week i want to wish you a happy and safe thanksgiving. For those of you all around the globe, seriously. Um. Stay safe stay healthy. Look forward to. Receiving, all of your applications. And for our panelists, thank you so much for taking the time to share your experience, with all of us. Katie it's all yours. Thank you so much donna. Um well, um welcome, and let me just echo donna sentiments, that we wish all of you, um, you know good health around the world, and i will say, good morning good afternoon, good evening. I'm looking at where folks are logging in from, and. No surprises. Um, it is a very, very global group of participants, today so thank you for sending aside a time. Um, on your friday, whether it's the morning or the evening to spend with us, um, yeah i would actually love to. Bypass, this slide and invite, our alumni, to come off their video. And join us i'm gonna stop sharing. Um, and we are going to go along with what i like to call the brady bunch view. Hi everyone, nice to see you, i'm, it's, um. Uh hi tony welcome. Um, everyone. Um that's joining us today. Is, a recent graduate, of our class of 2020.. Uh, they, um. We invited them here today because they've had. Um, really diverse. Sets of experiences. Not only before they joined us at mit, sloan, and certainly in what they're doing now, but, over the course of their 12-month, experience. In the sloan fellows, mba program. And looking through all the activities. That i know you participated. In, and, and you really, got out of that classroom, experience. And and made the most of your 12 months on campus. Um or maybe it was more like 10 months on campus, i suppose. Because you all were impacted, by the kovid 19 pandemic, in your final. Half of the spring semester. Um. And so before we get started what i'd love to do is have each of you would just quickly introduce, yourselves. And let us know, where you were coming from before you started the mba. Um in the sloan fellows program. And then where are you today, we'll go in the order that you're on my screen so we'll go karen, tony and then jose will wrap us. Up. You're on mute karen. See maybe we'll go to tony.
That Works, there we go okay, yeah i think i can't unmute myself, but anyway. Um hi everyone, i'm karen, um. From the us from new york city. Um, directly, before the mit, swan fellows program i was living in kenya, and. Doing, work with an agriculture, startup in rural kenya. Um. So i joined. Um. Mit, having built my career in the tech startup world in new york but immediately, coming from, kenya. And right now i'm also in new york working for a startup. Um in child development, and healthcare. Great, thank you. Tony. Yes, hi everybody, my name is. Tony hanada. I'm originally, from japan. Before, the sloan fellows, program. I was running, my. Family company, which is a robotics, manufacturer. Wanting to, expand. My family business. I came to mit. To explore new opportunities. Um, which i definitely have done, and, so right now. I'm actually in the visiting, fellows, program, because i just couldn't get enough of mit. And wanted to take more classes. But at the same time i just moved. Back to japan. And. Am, just getting it back into my family company. Um, so excited. For this transition. Thank you everybody. Jose. Hello everybody my name is jose. Uh i come from mexico. So before the program. I used to work in a private equity fund so i was the. Corporate finance director. Um and we invested in renewable, energy. Um. The program. Also, i changed my life like i think most of us, for most of us, uh, and now, i'm in london, with my family. And i'm working in a startup. Thank you jose, i want to go back quickly, um to what, tony mentioned that he is a visiting, fellow, the visiting, fellows while it shares a name with the slim fellows, is a is a separate program, where. Um. A. A student at the graduate, level can. Visit, mit, sloan, and take graduate, level courses. As a, non-degree. Grant. She got disconnected. Maybe. Yeah. So tony what's a fellows program. So i shall i go on and explain the visiting fellows, program perhaps. Yeah uh tony while we're waiting for, katie, to get your shirt. Could you just give a tiny tiny little, spiel about that sure, sure i'm, happy to. Um so the visiting fellows program, is, a, program, as katie was talking about for graduate, students all over, all over the world to be able to come in, um it's a non-degree. Program. But, you have. The. Uh. The ability, to to join, any classes. That you would, as, an mba, as a as a master, student. Um, um in in the sloan, school so, it's it's an amazing, opportunity. Um. And yeah i i i, just had to take it and i'm really enjoying it right now. Maybe your kids back. Great perfect timing uh tony was just finishing up a little bit about visiting, fellows. Um. And, i think we'll just move on to whatever your next question was. Let me unmute you. Awesome. Hi welcome to the era of covid my internet, just decided, to, um, to kick me off but um thank goodness for hot spots. I'm, i wanted to start at a really high level and to everyone that's joining us today i see the questions rolling in, i'm going to ask, a couple of questions to get our conversation. Started, and then, we will pivot and take some of the um answer some of the questions coming in in the q a so keep them coming please. Um, what i'd love to start with is. Why did you decide, to. Um, you know pursue, an mba. Um especially. Having, you know. Your career, on, i'm on a high, stepping away for that year, what was attractive, to you and and um about, about taking that year away to come to mit, sloan. Um jose you're now in my upper right corner so why don't we go ahead and start with you. Okay, well for me, um, it was a, it's a perfect time for for reflection. And, uh, for, for pivoting, no, so, um, of course by itself, the program, and the school, are, super attractive. But as a personal, level. I wanted. To. Improve. My. My. Knowledge of the business. My connections, especially. No. And, have time, to, think. Of, what i really want to do with my life, no. And, the reality is that it met my expectations. This time, i i. Really have. Time to. To spend with people that are amazing. Smart. Um. So the ecosystem. Of innovation. And, and, intellectual. Uh, people it's it's, it was great you know, and it helped me with my goals. Great. Karen when you when you um decided that you wanted to come back to school, and and you and you, um, sort of narrowed in on the sloan fellas program at mit. Were there goals that you, set for yourself, coming in. Yeah definitely, so i think for me. I'm, transitioning. Back to the us, because i had finished up my contract, in kenya and was kind of moving back to the us, so starting school was a good. Um. A good transition, for me if that makes sense, and, i think, a lot of the reason i did it was to be. Around, a cohort, of really smart, um. People but also really experienced, people because i knew i wanted to learn as much from my, classmates, as i would from.
Um, From our professors, and lectures and all those kinds of things so, for me the professional, goals were really about deepening, existing, skill sets that i already had with more of an academic, background. And. Feeling, in skills gaps of things that i didn't. Um think i had a lot of background, in so more. Um kind of the finance, side of things a lot of um. More formal strategy, frameworks those kinds of things. And, then really just exploring, different opportunities, for career paths. And, i was really interested, in impact investing. And, doing my own startup, kind of transitioning, to different types of roles within startups. And, so there was a lot of kind of that, exploration. That that, the mit sloan fellows program was about for me. Great i definitely want to get in for both of you on, sort of how you made that how you um. How you navigated, that experience, um but tony, when you decided, that it was the time to step away. Uh, how did you um prepare, you know for that experience, what what. What was, sort of your. Expectations. Okay. So, i really decided. To, come to the sloan fellows, program, when. I started getting really comfortable, with what i had accomplished, in my company. I had been in my, family company for about six years. I was able to more than double revenues. But i could see that some of the businesses, were starting to get mature. And so you know i felt like i accomplished, a lot but, at the same time i felt like it was time for something new. And, wanting to really expose, myself. In terms of robotics, and ai. Um, because that's what my family company does you know what better place than mit. Um so that really. Is what, first led me here. Um. But yeah, ever since, um, i've, made some really amazing, relationships. So i will go into that a little bit later but um yeah, it's been amazing. Yeah so um, we've talked a, very high level that it is a very unique. Way to earn your mba. A one-year. Almost sabbatical. From your professional. Career path to step aside. Um the word i often, hear our alumni, use to describe the experience, is that it's a highly, transformational. Experience. Um, expected, or unexpected, that you will, have immense, growth. Both from the academic. But also from all of the extracurricular. Activities, and so for anyone joining us today that is a little is still exploring, the sloan fellows. It is a three semester, program, that begins, with the. Um, core semester, in the summer, so we do start in june. Um, in june, um, you'll take about, 75, percent or three quarters of your, um core classes, these are the required, general management, classes. And then our salmon fellows, have, immense, of flexibility. In the autumn or fall semester. As well as that spring semester, to explore. And you're, highly, encouraged, to, um, you know, explore, the curiosities. That you have around the school. Before we get into, how you guys explored, i i get a lot of questions.
Um For, from um prospective. Um students on. What does a day feel like as a sloan fellow at mit or what does a week feel like it's very different, obviously, from the summer, where, you're extremely. You're you're very much embedded, in a full week of classes. And compared to the fall. Can one of you share, what maybe a day or a week feels like in the summer. Um, and then we'll have someone do the. Um duck's position to the fall or spring semester. Who wants to jump in. Tony, why don't you tell us about the summer, sure. Um, so i i had a rather unique, summer, uh but i'm very happy to share so my, daughter had just turned, one. I brought her to to cambridge. With my wife so. She was, still having sleep problems. Um, and so. My day would literally, start, uh, at 5am. Because that was when she would wake up. Go straight to classes. Um and it would be three hours in the morning, three hours in the afternoon, i try to get a, sort of a nap. In between, classes. Um but. The classes. Were. Um. It. Was, a lot of it was um. Your core classes, where it really taught you the basic skills that you really needed for the electives. Um. And and, that was, that was it was really great to have that refresher, because i was really nervous, going into electives. Maybe not knowing. Some of the, the, the things that we had learned. During our undergraduate. Years. Um and then, after that so every other day though, is, um, you you you have, your teams, your summer teams. Which are randomly. Uh selected. And these teams, are, i think what really makes. This program, unique, is that, because, the program, is so full of. Very, diverse, people, and, diverse, in almost every sense. That. You really. Um. Thrive. Slash. Struggle, too especially, in the beginning, because you're trying to work with, the kind of people that maybe you've never. Worked with before. And i think mit, also does a good job of giving you. Just the right enough. Amount of work. Which means, too much work. So, they challenge, you, um, and and, that is what really. Um. Makes this experience. In the summer, very worthwhile. So just to make it clear it it's every other day um, depending on the teams. If a team has uh. Everyone has families. We try to work as much as possible, during the weekdays, so that we leave the weekends. Just with our families. But it differs, team by team and you kind of come together, in the beginning to try to figure out, you know okay what, what do we want our team to do, um so it's all customizable. It's all negotiable. And. That's a wonderful. Thing about the summer. Yeah, tony i'll let you know there is a little more rhyme and reason to how you end up on the study team that you're, really okay. There is yeah i have no idea the algorithm. Um. But we spend quite a bit of time in admissions with the program office, um since we get to know you through the admissions, process. Um, making the teams, as diverse, as possible. Spreading, out all those different kinds of experiences. Whether it's academic, or industry. Um, to make sure that the teams are, diverse, but robust, as well yeah. I had no idea, that's very cool to you.
Yeah, It's a favorite day. Um, karen or jose, when you so you wrap up the summer. And you have a really, great sort of playing, field, of these general management, classes. How do you decide. How to, spend, your electives. Um. How do you make those decisions, how much time you want to be in the classroom versus out of the classroom. You can go for a survey. Okay so um. So, it, that really, so when, fall comes. It's. It's fun because you can have there's a lot of electrics to choose from, which is overwhelming. Also. Uh is is difficult to choose, but you have information, also. You have. Ratings. Or or. Inputs, from, other fellows. But at the end you need to, you need to make a decision. You can decide how, how. Packed is your, is your semester, so you can have it full. Packed, of classes. You can also take listening, classes. So it's up to you i mean you can go, you can be in classes, all day five days a week. But most of us don't do that of course. There's a lot of work to do after classes. It's a little sad, versus, the summer because. You lose. Your work your your working group no, um karen was, in my working group. Um. And so so that part you lose it you lose also. The. Um. The, these classrooms, are where, only for us. So, the summer is really where we. Bond together. And then, the fall. Is, is cool because, you start you you have classes with the other programs, no so, the diversity. Is increased. The opinions. Are. Very, um, uh uh, they're great, um but you lose that part no. For me uh in this in the fall a typical, day, would be. So, i i came also with my family, i had, three kids. Um, so, i woke up in the morning. Give them breakfast. And i took them to the bus. The bus station, they went to the school. And i walked to the to to sloan, no, and there i start my classes, i usually stay there. All day, um. Because. Stay being there is also part of the experience, so you have to be there. Um you have to, to talk to the people you have to be in the cafeteria. To see who you meet, um. Then, of course you have. Things. Work well. Homework, and stuff like that. Um. The studying rooms. So, um i usually stay there. Uh until. I don't know 5 p.m. And, if at 5pm i didn't have any classes because some some days i did, i went back home, play a little bit with. A little bit with my kids. And then, uh, finish, reading something, and, after that no, that was a typical, fall. Day for me. Usually, the weekends, i left it for my family so unless i had a really really. Um. Homework to deliver. I did work but i i. Tried to, have it. For my family, and most most weekends i could have, so, you have, you have a balanced. Life no it's not it's not that crazy. I often tell, um, new students that the maximum, number of electives, you can take is not a target. Yeah. And that you. Although i think that that um is not something that is always um, it may fall in deaf ears i think a lot of our students. Max out on the electives, and really take advantage. Of that classroom, experience. How did you. Go ahead, no my experience i maxed out. From the from my from my electives. It also depends on which electives do you choose no some are more demanding than others, uh, but, yeah i mean. You, you are all all day work no, uh if you max out. Yeah, for sure no karen how did you navigate, the elective, system, and is there an elective that stands out for you um over the fall or spring semester. Um. Yeah i think so to kind of give a little bit of context. Some of the best advice i got going into the fall was from yoast who's a. Fellow alum from a while ago who still kind of works at mit, and he said to sit down, and think about all your specific, goals that you have and the things that you want to explore. And then try to map out how you're going to explore that in the classroom. Through extracurriculars. Like. Groups, and teams and conferences. Kind of those structured, things. And and then the non-structured. Extracurriculars. In terms of, networking, having access to professors. Um you know really building, out kind of a more that social component to the program. And that was honestly the best advice i think i got in the summer and helped me really have a framework, for that. Um, so in the fall. Um i joined, um, leadership. Of a club. Which is mostly two-year mbas, but i really enjoyed that process. It helped me dive a lot more into impact investing, um which is something that i had wanted. More experience, in, um and then there was very specific, topics, i did through conferences. And. A lot of more kind of investment related stuff, and but in terms of the electives, very specifically, i think it was a process, of, just being really clear on what your goals are. And, it's helpful to use the fall to explore, stuff, because, if you're really thinking, about pivoting, careers, or changing functions. You want to get that stuff in as early as you can because you might not like it, and then when it comes time to really think about switching your job you might be focusing on the wrong thing so i tried to stage it so that the fall helped me to explore, different things.
Um, And also, um we were working on building a startup, and a lot of my coursework, was focused on that as well. Um. So new enterprises, i took with bill allett, and i also took yoast, class development ventures. Um. And i think honestly, the the best class i took in the fall, was the venture capital class, coming from the startup world, and it really just helped you see. Um. The finance behind things the different kind of dynamics. Behind the scenes so to speak. And just had wonderful speakers so that was something that, it was definitely a challenging class for me because it was, advanced, finance, before we had taken, the kind of intro level or kind of core finance. And so i felt like i was constantly, catching up but it was um, worth it and a great and a great course. You've all touched on, the, idea that when the fall semester rolls around you really integrate, into, the rest of the sloan community. And, and in the summer you're kind of like an only child right there's not a lot of students on campus. Um. You're one of the only degree, programs, actually around mit, all summer. Um. And. That is really unique to this program at mit, that we have all of our students taking electives, together. All of our students play an active role in the sort of growth and development of the school. Um and and a lot of that happens through, through clubs. Jose i know you were really active in a number of clubs i wrote some of them down so i wouldn't forget them, i'm, the bcpe. Club the fintech, club, um sloane energy, club, which i believe, actually crosses, over to mit. Um how did you decide. How many clubs, to, be active in and. You know what is the commitment. When you think about joining those kinds of clubs. Sure uh so. Before arriving to mit, uh, i mean i told the beginning that i i wanted. To, let's define myself to to, to really understand what i wanted to do for the rest of my life no, and. But i had some ideas no it's not like. It's not like i can do anything no, so it was either. Staying. In. Private equity. And going, uh. Especially in energy. Uh which that was my background, so that's why i joined, uh, energy club, or. Pivoting, to the startup world no so that's why i joined the vc, and entrepreneurship. Clubs no so those were like my my, two goals at the beginning. And those were the networks. And the experiences, that i wanted to have uh during my year no, um. That's that's how i choose them. How they help me, uh. Uh incredible, i mean the clubs are super active. In in. In mit. You have constantly. Uh, different. Uh they invite. No people to talk us, about the industry. Um, there are uh also panelists. Uh, we have also, lunches. Um, even trips no i took a, a trip to new york with a vc group. Even cross, school trips so, of the club the clubs at mit. Talk to the clubs at harvard. So, some trips are together, so your network, even it's even bigger, no.
And, Also, it provides you with direct contact with the industry, no, so the clubs, usually manage their relationship. With the. Different. Companies, outside of of, of mit, no so they have direct contact with the big companies in energy, with the big. Hedge hedge funds or vc funds or private equity funds, and also, with this network, of entrepreneurs, no, that's, why i chose. Thank you that i. Thank you for bringing up also that um you are, as an mit, graduate, student you have access, outside, of sloan. Um to explore mit, but also, partner. Um or cross-register. At harvard. Um, and we're seeing more and more, at the extracurricular. Level that clubs are combining, forces. Across, our peer schools and creating larger conferences. Larger, more impactful, conversations. Um but certainly, the cross registration. Experience, is a huge part of being an mit sloan student. Um did any of you take advantage of that cross registration. Um whether it was outside of sloan i know karen you mentioned the media lab, um, but did anyone. Um. Can anyone share what that experience was, for them, um to sort of step outside of the sloan school for class work. Yeah i can type in on the broader mit, side of things if that's helpful. I took, two classes, technically, outside, of sloan although i think they were both cross registered, was on, um one of which was development ventures, with yoast. And that actually pulls from harp there's most of the class is very diverse so sloan harvard. All of mit. And, and that one was really fun he brought in a ton of guest speakers, and you got to really think about it from a lot of different perspectives. And, and then the class that i took in the engineering, school. Um, was actually called money for startups. And. And it's a group of mit, students that are not, mostly, mit students that are not sloan. And so they've developed. Some, technology. Or. Software, that they want to actually launch and commercialize, into a business. And. And we kind of work together, to try to. Run through, um. Different practicums. With, um, venture capitalists, like we had to actually pretend to negotiate, with the vc. Um and our team was mostly non-slim, students and you got to hear all about the cool technologies, they're building the stuff they're trying to commercialize. Um and that was just a ton of fun, um and really gave you some perspective, on, the full um. Mit. School and kind of the depth of talent there so that was definitely a highlight for me i loved getting to know. And, the students across mit. Yeah. I want to step back before we oh i go to the questions there are a ton of great questions coming in i'm sure you guys are scrolling through too, um one of the unique, aspects of the slim fellas, is not only do you get this greater, mit, experience. You get a sloan, family, but you also get a sloan fellows, family. And it's a really, really. Um. Close group, of, 110. Of your closest, friends. Um. And, um, and through that experience there and through that program there are a few experiences. That are, 100. Unique, to the sloan fellows program and i'm thinking specifically. About, your modules, on the new york leadership. Module, as well as the dc. Um. Global, module. Tony, did you participate, in the new york module. Can you tell us a little bit more about, what is that does it a whole week are you only spending a couple days in new york what happens, in that in that moment yes yes yes happy to jump into that, the new york module. Um, was, a. So what it is meant to be, is, that, um, you have, great speakers. From, all over america. In, various, industries. Come, and, talk to us and and, and. It's, um. Great stories, from great leaders. But what's also great about it is they give us a lot of time, for q and a. And it's a very personal, kind of time so. You can, often, get, very. Uh honest, and frank answers, that maybe you would not usually be able to hear. Of course the rule is that, you're not allowed to tweet about it, and they always tell you ahead of time. But it's a very special, time. Uh, where you get to spend. You know. This this very close time with very high caliber, people. But also. It also, serves, as sort of. A mini reunion. Type of event. Because, it, it happens in the fall semester. So during the summer system semester, you're spending it with the fellows, every day, you go into the fall semester, and suddenly you're doing, a lot of electives, and you're not with the fellows every day anymore. And you're not, connecting, with one another as much as you want to, and by the time it comes to the new york module, you really, we start missing each other. And so you come to new york and it's the the.
Actual Thing is only three days but we make it into a full week. And, you know actually, karen, is who is from new york. Uh and, a a. Bunch of other very, very kind, uh, uh of our u.s, students. You know held events. To jazz clubs, to, museum, visits, um. To to pizza restaurants, you know. Um, so. It was very memorable, to say the least. Thank you i've heard that it's a lot of fun. Um, that you get, you gain, an, access to a conversation. With senior leaders across organizations. That. Um. That normally you're not privy, to especially. Because it is a closed door a non-twitter, conversation. They are more. Open to sharing, where they made mistakes. Where they would have done something differently. Right and that reflective, piece of leadership. Um i know that your module to new to dc, was virtual, this year, um one of the very first things to pivot to be virtual, at the start of the, um, kovid 19, pandemic. Um, and. Um, jose r karen can you share a little bit just what the themes, and what the, outcomes, of the. Dc, module, are. I'll go first on this one because i threw it was the best last time but, um. Um, i think for me it was really interesting because. You know. All of a sudden the world is shutting down, and. And then very quickly you still are having these zoom conversations, with people that are. Kind of, very important in the conversations, of what happens for covet who are thinking about it from a policy, perspective. It was actually really interestingly, timed. Um in the sense that a lot of the kind of major thinkers in dc, who were really impacted, by. Having to deal with these policies and figure out what was going to happen. And, carved out time just to get on a zoom call with us and talk to us about it so, um also i think having. A lot of our mit professors, there to help steward the conversation, give you a lot of insight into what was going on. Um. I think one of the last classes i had right before things shut down was system dynamics, where you learn about, infectious, disease models. And, that was like one of the last ones then we kind of, went right from this class, um with john sturman, learning about infectious, disease models and how those can relate to business to switching to thinking about. Um. Covered from a policy perspective so it obviously wasn't ideal that it was remote but it was still, really fascinating, to be a part of, that conversation. Um, in such a timely way. I'm gonna open it up to the questions in the chat and there are um a number of questions we will do our best to get through or, find the questions that are overlapping. Um one of the pieces, of the puzzle we have not talked about, very much yet, is, um some of these, breaks, um, in the academic, schedule at mit, one of them being independent, activities, period. Which is a month-long. Um. Sort of suspension. Of course work. From from your academic, coursework. And it could be filled in lots of ways, um, you can either remain on campus and continue, taking, um. Specialty, courses, from everything, from. Business plan writing, to texas hold on poker, and integrate with the rest of the institution. And many students will choose to travel. During that iap, that january. Period. And, tony what did you do for your iap, period. Yeah so um during the iep, period. Uh i was able to take courses. From the uh. I don't know the official name but there was, i think three days of the executive, courses, that that are made available. Yes. Executive, level electives. Um, and you actually get credit for them, but it's also great because, you get, a, really. Solid. Two to three days. Um, almost like a, condensed. Version. Of, a course. But you get all the really important, points, so. Maybe you want, some exposure. To a certain course but you don't want to do it for an entire semester. Well this is the perfect, way to get exposure, to that, so not only do you get. Um, that, academic. Benefit, from taking the course. But actually. They're alumni. That come. To take the course, with you so you get to network with all the former sloan fellows, then the the mbas. From, five years ago or or even longer. And it's also a great way. To network, so that, is how i spent my iap, period. Yeah i, couldn't echo, um your enthusiasm. For the executive, electives, it is unique to our executive. Degree, grant um program so the executive, mba and then obviously the slum fellows.
Um Can participate. In these two day deep dive courses, in january. Um, as a current student or as tony mentioned, you know down the road you can return to campus. As an alum, uh to take. Courses you may, dive deeper into a more advanced. Subject, like karen said system dynamics. Advanced, system dynamics, is one of the most popular. Electives. And. Pricing, is a two-day elective, that's taught by the, infamous, catherine, tucker. Um, and always, a very very popular, elective to get into but the networking, pieces tony mentioned, is, um, there is nothing, like it um i think next to maybe reunion. Where we're bringing sometimes, five six hundred, emba, slum fellow, current students and alumni, back to campus. To, sit in the classroom, together. To network, um outside the classroom. Um i remember the first time i went to an. Slim fellas elective. And i, was sitting in the room and they were working, in teams on a pr on a project, or a problem in the classroom. And every, member of this four person, group, was from a different program, and a different year. And it just. Not to be too emotional, it just made my heart like burst, and that it was actually, um, accomplished, exactly what we wanted, bringing. Everyone back for this sort of commitment, to lifelong, learning that our executive, students, have. Time. There are a couple questions in in here about, um, about action learning and and for our participants, if you're not familiar, with action learning it's a pedagogy, that was developed at mit, it's very heavily rooted in the motto. Of mit, which is men's at manus, or, mind in hand. Constantly, connecting, the theory, in the classroom with the practice, of that theory, or the framework, right like grounding you and what you're learning so that when you're, an alumni, and you go back out into your, um career, path, you. That new learning is a lot more accessible, to you you've tried it on you've practiced, it, you know how it works you know what you may want to do differently, next time, um it is possible in the sloan fellows program, even with only two semesters, of, academic. Electives, to, participate. In um. In action learning courses. Did any of our panelists. Participate, in an action learning lab. I see karen saying yes, go for it. I participated. In oh tony you did too or uh or glad was texting on the ax. Thank you thank you for reminding, me yes i did. Yeah um. That was the only one i did which was um, organization's, lab was um actually was a brand new class last spring.
And, That nelson your pen taught and. I. I really loved it i think. I really loved the academic, part of it because, it was, new content that wasn't taught elsewhere. And it was stuff that i honestly had really come to sloan to learn. And, in terms of like work design and structuring, teams in, the most productive way possible. And and then what was really cool was. You get put in a team, and. You get assigned, an external, organization. And so there's different types of action learning labs some people work directly with a startup. Or, kind of different, type of company we worked with nonprofits. Um and we help them to think about how to scale the work that they're doing. And, because very often non-profits, don't quite have the resources, to think about how to do things more efficiently. Um and so we would come in and basically, consult, to them in a very. Um practical, hands-on, way. And that is true of all the action learning labs you really get in there see an organization. Take the academic, content that you're learning in a class. And try to actually apply it so, i think that was one of the most, important, classes, i took, um in my time definitely, for the spring. And. And i really enjoyed that so. So i'm conscious of time so in a minute i'm going to go and, talk just quickly about the admissions, process. Um. Probably the most formal part of our hour together. Um. But what i i would love to spend a few minutes talking we've touched on the idea of having. Partners. Husbands, wife girlfriends boyfriend, spouses, or what we would, refer to as significant, others, as part of the adventure, of coming to mit, sloan and how you manage. That experience. Together. I'm curious, when we think about when you think about the sloan, fellows. Family but also the mit, sloan community. How did you together. Integrate, um, or experience. That, um whether it was with your partner or with with your family, if you have a family that came with you, so i i i'm. Excited. To jump in here first, because. Um, uh so my wife yuko. Uh actually, mentioned to me on our trip back that she was so glad she came with me, to mit, to cambridge, to this program. The the support, that you get from the program. As a significant. Other, is just, um, incredible. Um that all the events. That that that is there, the work, that, the program, puts in. To make sure that. It's not. Just. Us. Networking. With one another the fellows but it's a significant. Others, that also have a very strong community, together. One example is that they had cooking classes, where, um, you, everyone, would share their own cultures, and their own recipes. And people, and everyone, would get very close, uh to the point where. Um. You know, my wife talked about i, she thinks that she's, made basically, the best friends she's ever had, through this program, and and, it's because of this. Um, another, good example, of the effort that the program looks um. Puts in. Is um. In in during the events. So you know the fellows want to be, uh networking, with one another but we, many of us have have kids running around and and so we, get easily distracted. But the program, has set up. Um, literally. Uh arts and crafts, table. Or, or, or these, great. Um, kids. Corners. Where. The kids are being taken care of by people. And so, it's, that really allows, for the adults, and the significant, others, to really. Um. Focus, on, networking, with one another, i think that makes the program really special, i don't know any other program, that goes. To this extent. And, so this is why i i am so excited, to to let you all know, uh uh, really what this program is about. I have a distinct, memory, of all of all of the children running around a bullying. In boston. Exactly. That one yes. Um. And it was a lot of fun, um, sort of just watching all the families and the kids interact.
Yeah, And knowing that this is just such a unique, adventure, that they were all on, exactly. Yeah, oh there karen anything you want to add to that sort of, family experience, i mean. Just. It's it's it's an excitement family, no it becomes your family, and the reality is that, uh, the best example that i can give you is that yesterday, my wife was. Zooming with some of the other wives or other essos. For, cooking classes maybe your wife was there tony. Yeah she probably was. And my kids also asked about their friends. That they met, in, in. In, mementino. Yeah yeah. I'll just jump in really quick and say that like i do think that the fellows does become a family and i think that that's something that. You really have to choose to participate. In and. Lean into and um appreciate i do consider tony and jose and both their families my family as well so. Uh. Likewise. Um. And there was a question, about, how, how, different the sloan fellows program. Is with the emba program so i should probably just cover it right here, it's, very different because the emba. Program is part-time. Um, and, but the sloan fellows program, you're here for full year it's absolutely, immersive. And, so, that's why you bring. Your whole family's, here and that's why it's a it's a full. It's a full experience. It's a full one to one year experience, so it's completely, different, than than the executive. Yeah as we as we talked at the beginning, um a one-year, mba program is unique, in the u.s, context, extremely. Unique. At the executive, level, um, and to put the numbers behind it, in the slum fellas program, and depending on the number of electives, you take, upwards of 70, 75. Of your, classroom, experience. Could be elective. Um if you. Um. Decide to balance your time between, inside and outside the classroom it'll probably be more like, 60, 40 or 50 50.. Where the emba, program. Um, is a lock set program, or an it's a, and, it's a primarily, core so 80, of the courses are chosen for the students. And are spread out over the 20 months because they're working full-time. And coming to mit. I'm. On what we now call the weekend friday and saturday. Um, and then about 20, of their time is elective. Um and tony talked about those executive, electives. Um that they take as well, they are very similar, in terms of demographics. And the experience. That that peer group brings, into the room, and that sloan fellas. Um. Traditionally, or historically. Has been much more international. I didn't show the demographics, for your class today but, um. Uh sort of year over year we've had, um 35, to 40, different. First citizenship, countries, and over 50. When we start counting second citizenships. Um and probably. 30 to 40, um different industries, functions. I remember when i was putting together, the demographics. For your class, in their june orientation. Then i think there were, 104. Classmates, and 103. Different, companies. And i went back and checked that like 10 times i didn't think that was possible. Um, but it just really shows that the breadth, of. Um. Of different perspectives. That come into the classroom, um with the song fellows. So, i am going to put my slides back on and give our, alumni, one last question to think about, while i quickly, highlight, the, admissions, process. And, and my, my question to you and i see it in here um a few times is you know what advice, would you have to yourself, or to this group, and if you remember, sitting on this webinar. You know 18, months ago, or a year and a half ago thinking about. You know maybe i do want to step aside. Um, and and and, get my mba. Um so think about that, and, i will. Share my slide. I just quickly i know we purposely. Tonight or this morning tonight for some of you did not spend a lot of time flipping through slides we have a lot of great webinars. Um on our youtube, admissions, page if you want to go into a deeper dive into the curriculum, experience. Or a deeper dive into. A specific, industry, or functional experience, for yourself. Um please um definitely, visit that youtube page, but i did want to walk through some of the components, of the application. Um everything you see on the left side of the screen is outlined in great detail on our website, including, an application, tips webinar.
A Few places that we get the most questions. Um around. The organizational. Chart, um the video, and the references. And the organizational. Chart is an incredible, way for us to understand what is your impact, in your team, in your business unit, within your organization. And as we've heard today, our students come from all kinds of companies, so they come from a two-person, company, and a 20, 000 person company. What i'm really looking to understand is where do you sit um within that organization. And who do you impact, every day who influences. You. So if you're coming from one of those much larger. Multinationals. I always use amazon as my example. I don't need to see where jeff bezos, is i know where he is i'm looking for where is your. Um where is your working group, and who is your um, leadership, above you influencing. Um, and we see lots of dotted lines in these organizational. Charts as well, and the video, i'm um. Is. Really just an introduction, of yourself to, your future classmates, we won't actually share these with your classmates. They're just um something for the admissions committee to review. I recommend, using your phone or your, laptop. Um, and take as many takes as you like but upload the version that you like the best, do not hire a film crew do not professionally. Edit anything. Um. But do make sure that we can see you and that we can hear you, it's not only a way for us to just get to know what you're interested, in um and perhaps beyond your professional, experiences. But also a way for us to understand, your communication, style, as well, um and then the two additional references, this is something that we um, piloted, last year and we were really happy. Um to move forward and continuing, with it this year, we have then reduced, our letter of recommendation. To one. And so choose, that recommender. Um. That is going to be able to provide. Positive, anecdotal. Evidence and really speak. In detail. Um, to the questions we're asking about the work that they've seen you succeed, in and also, what are your areas of development your areas of growth, how is the mba going to, set you up for what's next, um, if we call your references. Do not worry about it if we don't call your references. Do not worry about it, um, they're just there in case there are gray areas, or, we just need a couple of more data points um in order to. Um, make a bet, the best decision, about your, total application. Um. You can see we've already passed our round one deadline, october, 6th our round two deadline, is coming up january, 11th, and then we have a final deadline, in march. And, i highly recommend it if you're considering. Applying to start this coming june, that you do aim for that second deadline, the third deadline. Um. Is, um. Is. Is definitely, doable, but it makes it really challenging, to. Um you know wrap up your job prepare, to move to boston. And start an mba program it's just a much shorter amount of time to make that, pretty significant. Transition. So, um, i would recommend aiming for for the january. Round two deadline. We do um require, an interview, um as part of the application, process, it's a step forward, in the admissions, process. Um and so um. Uh if you're invited to interview it it's a it's a signal that you're moving forward. Unfortunately. No surprise, we're not able to meet you in person for interviews.
So All of our interviews are happening just like this on zoom, um and someday soon i know we all hope that we can go out into the world and meet each other in person. Again. Um. And i will leave it at that, and i'm gonna go back to my alumni. And. Let's go in the order again that we started i believe we went. Parent, jose, karen, tony jose is that how we started. Great, um so karen if you could think back before you started the program. What is one piece of advice, that you would, um give yourself. Yeah i think it's really important, to spend time um thinking about what your goals are for the program. And because there's so many different things you can do at mit, it's really important to know, what you're saying yes to and what you're saying no to. Um because otherwise. You can kind of get a little bit lost in the system. I think it's really important to know your professional, goals, in terms of here's the content, and the academics, you want to explore. But also your goals in terms of soft skills. And, management. Leadership. And because you get such a great chance, to, try new things, take on new skills, you know work with your leadership, coach. And then i think, if, if you go into it really. Clear on what your goals are from a soft skills perspective, i actually think you'll get a lot more out of the program. Yeah that transformation. Will really, really come together. Tony how about yourself. Um, yes so for me, um. It was always. The more human, aspect, of, it that, really attracted, me to the program. Um i remember just talking to former, students, and, um of course the academics. You know, is second to none, mit. Courses. It doesn't really need to be said but still. The the human, aspect, the kind of people that you meet. That's really where, where it's at. So i would really. Encourage. People, before, coming. Um. To kind of. I don't know get yourself ready for it, whatever that means. And. And brace yourself, for some. Really. Um. Transformational. Uh human relationships. That that you're about to, gain. So that's that's my advice. Thank you i in the us we often say get your ducks in a row, yeah, okay before you come to school. Yeah. Jose, how about you. So um, just, a small, caveat, to to karen's. It's okay that, you don't know exactly. What your goals are at the beginning. So before coming. You you should have an idea. But. You have to decide by the summer, so use the summer, i i kind of said that no. Use the summer to explore. Use the summer, to find yourself what you really want. But decide, and then be super focused. Um. And and that's very very important and i echo, exactly what tony said no i mean, the human part is. The most important part of the program. Thank you all so. Much, um for being here and being online with us, um today. Um i know that you are all really busy, and, um, and, um, for some of you just starting out on your new, on your new path and, and for tony i know it's very late for you so thank you for, spending, your friday, evening with us, um. And to everyone that joined us um. Really around the world thank you for logging in we hope that you enjoyed the conversation. You'll see there our email address um if i know there are a lot of unanswered, questions. Um. As well as the slim fellows, website, um, if you're able to log into a future event or feel free to send us an email and we will. Certainly, get back to you with our answer with, answers to all your questions. Thank you everyone, on continued, good health, and. Have a wonderful, weekend ahead. Bye. Bye. Bye.