Two weeks after the curtain fell on our busiest semester yet (session two, which ended in late August), the stage was already set for the next session. During the two-week break, a few of my international classmates travelled long distances to visit their friends and families, while some of us stayed behind to prepare for another big session ahead.
For those who are unfamiliar with the AGSM MBA schedule, September marks the beginning of Careers Month, which provides opportunities for employers from Australia and the Asia-Pacific region to profile themselves and in some cases, even make job offers. This is also the first session where students have the chance to select their electives and have the option to specialise in certain areas.
Having just been through a semester where sleep was essentially a luxury, it seems this session will be no walk in the park either. In my case, adding a 10-month old baby to the mix certainly does shift things into overdrive. But what’s life without a challenge?
A few words about Careers Month: this is an event not only for AGSM but also for recruiting companies who are looking for new talent. This year, there has been a wide variety of companies interested in the school’s students.
Traditionally, AGSM has had strong relationships with consultancies in Australia, as a result the majority of recruiting companies tend to come from the consulting sector. However, there are some other options including general management programmes with large multinationals.
The Careers Month is organised by our in-house careers team, who have been doing an excellent job not only in terms of co-ordinating the event, but also by providing students with support in preparing for the recruiting season. For example, students have access to senior career coaches, who can help students to brush up their general interviewing skills and also help those who want consulting case interview preparation.
Having completed all the core courses, students have the opportunity to choose their own electives. Some of my classmates have signed up for a course called “Management Projects”, which gives students the opportunity to consult with external companies and help them to solve their business issues.
I am thrilled by the integrated marketing communications course which culminates in a presentation to the chief executive of Interbrand Australia, one of the world’s largest brand consultancies. This is a long way from any of my previous roles, but it is exciting nevertheless to be working on a brand audit.
We also have a new addition to our course catalogue – a couple of my classmates with AGSM faculty and administration have organised a practical Financial Modelling course, similar to the training investment banks receive in-house. This is another example of how a small programme like AGSM allows for certain flexibility. Session 3 and 4 therefore allow students to tailor their MBA based on their needs and future career plans.
Last but not the least, session 3 is bittersweet in some ways because some of my classmates have left to do a 3-month exchange at partner schools such as UCLA, Esade and LBS but at the same time we have new incoming students from various business schools around the world. This makes the semester all the more exciting as we get to know our new classmates and make some new friends (you can watch the welcome video here).
As you can tell, there’s never a dull day in the life of an AGSM MBA student.