A day in the life of a graduate student

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Life at Bryant can be quite interesting and busy, especially as a graduate student. According to the Bryant Website, the MBA curriculum is designed to develop an in-depth understanding of all business functions. Courses include strategy, leadership, management, accounting, finance, marketing, operations, and technology. The curriculum balances the technical, data-driven, quantitative skills to make objective decisions with the interpersonal and communication skills necessary to work effectively with people at all levels and from all cultures. Most importantly, these topic areas are integrated throughout the curriculum. You can focus your curriculum on general management but you also have an opportunity to specialize in one of the following: Global Finance, Global Supply Chain Management, International Business, or Business Analytics. In your second year of study, you also participate in the Global Immersion Experience, during which you and your classmates will travel abroad, and meet with senior executives at international firms and/or governmental policy makers.

The Archway had the chance to meet with five students (Drew Kennedy, Alexa Benk, Adam Smith, Sompetch “Peck” Katisomsakul and Adam Gabrilowitz) who all had different backgrounds and concentrations, but came together to share the life of being a Bryant Graduate student.

Archway: Where did you go to school and what type of programs are you a part of?

Graduates: Drew: I am currently an undergraduate at Bryant completing the 4 + 1 program for a masters in communication.

Alexa: Graduated in 2016 BSBA from Bryant and am currently enrolled in the full time 1 year program specializing in Business Analytics.

Adam S: Graduated Bryant in May concentrating in Finance and Entrepreneurship, currently enrolled in the one year program specializing in Global Finance.

Peck: Graduated from JWU as a Hospitality major and enrolled as a full time one year specializing in Global Supply Chain.

Adam: Graduated Bryant in 2016 in Accounting. I deferred my job offer with PwC to attend graduate school. I am in the MPAC program with a tax concentrations immediately after graduation and will be finished in December with the full amount of credits to take the exam for accounting.

Archway: Can you briefly explain the program and your day?

Graduates: With the 1 year MBA program, we begin in the fall, everyone is put in cohorts and we enroll in 4 classes and we all take those classes and we have the same schedule together until we complete graduate school, and receive the MBA degree. We all have different specialization courses, in which you begin in the spring and it is only 3 courses. It is a lot more work and collectively we are on campus for at least 12 hours because of the commute. Most of the time is spent in the library or the AIC. Our classes begin at 9:20-10:40 Monday through Thursday and second class from 11:30-1. Other days we have class at 2pm. It is 12 hours a week, and 4 classes a week. We also have on GIE (Global Immersion Experience) class a week that is similar to SIE but for graduate students and it will help us for when we travel to China as a class. It is a required for the degree. Our classes are based out of a 4.0 scale, and you need a 3.0 to graduate.

Drew: As an undergrad taking graduate classes, it is definitely not easy but the 4+1 program is great because it gives you the opportunity to start taking classes to get your degree, but it is a hard balance.

Archway: How was the transition from Bryant undergrad to graduate school?

Graduates: Educationally, yeah, Bryant helped build you up so it wasn’t much of an adjustment, but there was just more work, or more rigorous work. There are a lot more readings and case studies and cold calling. You definitely need to be prepared and keep up with your work. Bryant definitely prepares us with strong backgrounds in business classes, which I know many other universities do not do that. It was easier not to change up my current lifestyle and not go to another school. Why change something when Bryant has an amazing program and a familiar scenery? I know all of the buildings and professors so it was more convenient.

Peck: I didn’t go to Bryant so it was definitely a challenge to adapt. Bryant is a whole new culture. Bryant has a ton of group projects and teamwork orientated, which is awesome and new to me.

Alexa: One thing I wanted to point out is the uniqueness with Bryant. If I wasn’t for Bryant’s academic program, I wouldn’t be able to pick up a second major. I had extra credits and wanted to focus on Business, but with the opportunity to explore the Liberal Arts and Science classes, I fell in love with Psychology and had the opportunity to take more of those classes. The Bryant experience is like no other and it truly helps you for the next step.

Peck: Bryant has a work hard, play harder mentality that is truly inspiring, also the community is really welcoming and the environment is friendly. Academically it was an adjustment, because I didn’t have a business background at my undergraduate so it was all very new but challenging.

Adam G: The biggest transition was commuting, especially because living on campus, everything is right there, you can wake up and be in class in 5 minutes. It prepares you for the real world, but other than that, Bryant did a really good job preparing us.

Archway: Do you guys work as well?

Graduates: Adam G: I tried to work a job that was 15 hours a week and it was a difficult task, so I decided not anymore. It is not an easy balance.

Drew: As an undergrad at Bryant following the culture, I am highly involved in other organizations and it is a tough balance but it is all based off time management. There is no other like us.

Archway: Any likes or dislikes on the program?

Graduates: Likes: How it is discussion based and case studies. We are taken more seriously by our professors. The class atmosphere is very connected and we can feed off each other’s discussion. Cohort experience gave us a close bond. Helps us get ready for the working world. A lot of diversity which is great, whether it is race or major or ideas. Relationship with professor. Employers work around graduate school.

Dislikes: A lot of reading, not having a meal plan, course work isn’t equally distributed.  

Archway: Any advice for students who want to be a part of this program.

Graduates: Don’t procrastinate, be well prepared. Be vocal and involved, make connections with your cohort and professors. If you go to Bryant, apply for the program, it’s worth it. The Bryant Advantage program can help pay for the process!

Archway: How this program will help in the future?

Graduates: This program enhances our skills in Self learning, problem solving, and it helps prepare you for the work force. The Bryant Graduate Program is indeed something that will positively impact your future.

Archway: Favorite Professor?

Graduates: Professors Premis, Coakley, Baran, Moriss just to name a few.

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