Archive for April, 2012
One of the most challenging and fulfilling parts of the MBA is the significant element of group work required by the majority of our subjects. Learning to manage the different styles, cultures and timekeeping habits of our colleagues has been the source of more than one disagreement this year! But I have seen how team diversity, if properly managed, can drive a team to be greater than the sum of its parts.
I have been extremely fortunate to be part of two great work teams this year and that trend continued as I joined my friends Donnchadh, Nicole, Nihar and Philip on a team for the MBA case study competition. The process began with stiff competition from my fellow full time colleagues, and then the winner would take on a team of UCD Executive MBA students. The eventual winner would then represent UCD at the annual MBA case competition this summer in Dublin.
It is a testament to the ambition and dedication of our class that 15 students, comprising three teams (somehow) found time to dedicate themselves to this competition. We met early in the morning to be presented with a case study, and were then given 4 hours to analyse the case and prepare a presentation of our findings for a discerning panel of judges; Michael McDonnell, Prof. Pat Gibbons, and Dr. Brian McGrath.
We retired to a syndicate room when a brief period of calm while we read the case was quickly followed by a flurry of debate as we tried to corral the stampede of ideas into a coherent presentation. After the quickest four hours I can remember, we were slightly dazed, but ready to present. The MBA class of 2012 have become adept at preparing slick presentations, and the level of preparation has included an incredible adaptation of Toy Story 3, and some trademark guerrilla film making from Stephen Smith. The case study competition was excellent in forcing us to get back to basics and to present without the same level of preparation that we would usually put in. I was very impressed by all three presentations each of which dissected the case from a different perspective and offered various solutions for the company in question to move forward.
All of the teams would have done the full-time class proud, but I’m delighted to report the judges favoured our presentation, and we were awarded first prize and the right, along with the second placed team, to face the Executive MBA team in the next round.
From my experience of the Exec’s they will no doubt raise the bar further and it is up to us to match them if we are to go on to face the other MBA’s from across the country and live up to the achievements of last year’s team.
- Fergus O’Dea, Full-time MBA 2011/12
It’s that time again… it’s the time that companies start opening their doors to MBA students and recent grads.
Internships are popular with MBAs, particularly those who are considering changing career paths. There are two types, (1) internships for students who have graduated, and (2) internships for students who are in the middle of a two year program. Whatever your situation, now is the time that those doors open and now is the time to get those applications in.
The majority of internships with multinationals are located inside the US. There are exceptions, and for those of you who would like to have an experience in another country while performing your internship. As there are many US multinationals that have internships on offer, I have chosen the following because they offer internships outside of the States. Here are some details on them:
Location: HQ is in Ludwigshafen, Germany although BASF is active in many countries
Number of positions available: Various placements
Note: BASF calls the program the Accelerated Development Program for recent grads. Also do a search for “Praktikant”
Company: Credit Suisse
Location:Melbourne, Hong Kong and Singapore close 28 June 2012. Sydney internships close 26 Jul 2012.
Number of positions available: Not specified, but numerous
Note: The application process is quite long, and they will ask you for exam scores(remember SAT and GMAT?) Set aside some time before taking a stab at this one.
Location: Mostly UK and Germany, with some positions EU and worldwide.
Number of positions available: Four titles, several positions in each
Note: For internships in Europe use amazon.co.uk. For US opportunities, use Amazon.com. (I think you have to register twice). On the Amazon.co.uk site specific req numbers are: 168865, 154996, 132494, 170988
Remember, this is only a picking of companies that offer internships worldwide. If you choose to go to the States then the choices are virtually limitless.
So, there you go. Dust off your CV, add your most recent experience, and get it out there. Getting an internship at one of these companies is far from easy. You are competing against MBAs from around the world, so companies essentially have their picking of graduates. Whatever the outcome, make sure to send out, make contact, and follow-up. Best of luck!
- Michael Munevar, EMBA 2011/13
At the Sunday dinner table, we’re debating investing in Apple shares (alternative pension if you will…). I begin discussing perceived value, intangible assets and heavy reliance on equity while having what feels like an outer body experience. Clearly some of this course is rubbing off on me after all; terms that seemed so alien not 5 months ago are now making a lot more sense.
Many companies in Ireland today have experienced a very different few years to Apple, implementing austerity measures across the board, struggling for investment and opportunity with cripplingly limited access to credit. Yet while I keep a measured line of caution I can’t help feeling that the country is turning a corner. It may just be the promise of spring, but the painful and difficult decisions implemented during the crisis; restructuring, refocusing, realigning etc should now be starting to bloom.
We move to slightly lighter topics but stick to optimism. April will see Michael D come to Inchicore to hand over the keys to our new Habitat homeowners. After more than a year of struggle with banks, cashflow and the grim reality of the economy, it looks like the cloud has parted. A family of four living in a one bed flat that the boom forgot, will finally move into their 3 bed home that they helped refurbish.
Maybe it’s just spring, maybe I’m a little too optimistic or maybe its these three great weeks of midterm, but I’m thinking it’s time that the corner was turned and perhaps it is a Reasonable Projection for the country, that thoughtful investments in the tough times can yield their benefits in the not too distant future…
- Karen Kennedy, EMBA 2011/13
Having just touched down in North Carolina, the beginning of this journey in September last year seems but a distant memory. Having previously played one game of rugby in my life I found myself volunteering to be President of the MBA Smurfit Rugby Football Club with the aim of getting a team to Duke University, North Carolina to defend our status as MBA Rugby World Cup Champions…and so the journey began.
Having signed up one of the largest membership numbers to date we commenced training in November with a small group that was to become the core of this years club. Enthuasiastically we set out to bring both mens and womens teams to the tournament- perhaps doing so with a bit of naïvety towards the mammoth task that lay ahead. Having spent the Christmas holidays drafting letters to potential sponsors it gradually dawned on me exactly how difficult raising the required funds was going to be to make this trip a reality. However, as a committee and through a lot of dedication, hard work and ingenuity over the next three months we managed to make what at often times had seemed impossible, a reality. Yes, our studies may have suffered as a result but the MBA is about more than what we are taught in class and organising this club is proof of just that. This trip was made possible in no small way by our most generous of sponsors and the tireless efforts of both teams in their fundraising efforts so here’s hoping everyone gets their just rewards when we bring back two World Championship trophies to Smurfit after the weekend!
- Conor Price, Full-time MBA 2011/12