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Name : Malcolm Leon D’Silva Qualifications : MBA, University of Strathclyde 2013

“My weekends for the next 2 years would never be the same!”, the first thought that crept up as I headed out for my inaugural MBA class. Apart from the daily grind, this new journey required at least 16 hours almost every other weekend. This does not take into account the required average hour or two daily for either assignments, revisions or both.

As a part-time MBA student, you would realize that your family has to also sacrifice and adjust to your routine. Rarely mentioned but equally felt by my classmates, we all attribute our success to our loved ones’ patience. It is a team effort, similar to completing the MBA program itself.

The choice of the MBA program for me boiled down to this order of priorities: syllabus content, academic reputation, location & cost. The University of Strathclyde MBA fit the bill perfectly. I found the syllabus of the Strathclyde program most suited for anyone with at least 3 years working experience and some decision-making capacity although exactly how much either are required is subjective. However, meeting this criterion makes it easier to relate to the direction of the subjects because generally speaking, much of the output required in the exams, assignments and final project are geared towards strategic thinking which requires this level of maturity.

“What’s next?” is a question that usually comes to mind post-MBA. Personally, I was considering consulting before embarking on this program. However, during the program, I managed to secure a job with a Japanese bank based in Singapore doing corporate and industry research, covering the ASEAN region. As the MBA program progressed, I also noticed improvements in the quality of work produced, which is probably a reflection of the style of thinking, writing and presenting that was gained from the coursework. The MBA also opened my perspective to looking at things from an opportunistic angle to do better, think differently and bring a fresh perspective to situations.

My advice is do not limit yourself into thinking that the money and time invested in a MBA should deliver a better job and pay. That’s short sighted. Finally, have FUN! Most of us decide on pursuing a MBA after already achieving some level of success coupled with our working experience and first degrees. The MBA exerts a different kind of challenge. Face it with more laughter instead of stress and optimism instead of fear as it will make your pursuit for excellence memorable. I had so much fun with my MBA classmates, tutors, lecturers and their families that made the journey wholesome. The only limiting factor in life is the limits you perceive.

These days, I’m enjoying most weekends with my family while plotting the next move. Starting an education fund for the less fortunate? My own start-up venture perhaps? Or consulting? Am not sure…for now, opportunities seem limitless.