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Issue Date:
April 15, 2014

Chicago Booth through the Eyes of Exchange Students

By By Hitesh Agrawal '14 (Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore)  |  november, 2013, Issue 2

Every year, around 75-85 exchange students enroll in the Booth International Business Exchange Program (IBEP) and call Chicago home. The program was established in 1965 and includes 34 partner schools. Since more than half of the quarter has passed, we thought it was a good time to talk to some of the exchange students and hear their perspectives on the Booth (and Chicago) experience.

Hitesh Agrawal (Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore - 2 year MBA program)

How does the Booth experience compare to your parent school? There is more diversity in student population, more international exposure and lot more events.

What was most surprising or disappointing to you? Despite the large international population, the academic focus is mostly on the American economy.

How do you see the exchange program experience impacting your career goals? I think some of the courses I took here can be of help in job interviews with financial sector companies.

Clémentine André-Dumont (Louvain School of Management, Belgium - Masters in Management program)

How does the Booth experience compare to your parent school? Classes are more interactive here, the self-learning component is high and students are more experienced. The clubs organize many activities here.

What was most surprising or disappointing to you? I was surprised by the community spirit at the University of Chicago and Chicago Booth. They really build a strong brand image (university shops, events, logo and colors around, etc.).

How do you see the exchange program experience impacting your career goals? I hope it will help me in getting noticed at bigger MNCs, though in the Nestle office where I will be interning, people did not know about Booth.

Wen-Chyi Er (Nanyang Business school (NTU), Singapore - Nanyang MBA, Part-time)

How does the Booth experience compare to your parent school? It is more focused on the MBA, there are some unique courses offered in the finance field, a lot more homework and a multicultural environment. Also, everyone has mail folders!

What was most surprising or disappointing to you? Shops and supermarkets are far. The safety in Hyde Park is a little bit of a worry.

How do you see the exchange program experience impacting your career goals? I could get some traction in my interaction with American companies.

Pablo Garza Proal (ITAM Graduate Business School, Mexico - MBA, Part-time)

How does the Booth experience compare to your parent school? It is competitive, with better facilities, experienced professors and good finance courses.

What was most surprising or disappointing to you? Classes are so demanding that even my meal schedule is screwed up. Interaction between full-time and exchange students is much less. The level of networking with recruiting companies is surprising.

How do you see the exchange program experience impacting your career goals? Not much as I will go back to family business, though it is helping me in my personal growth.

Lu Huang (ESSEC Business School, Paris - Masters in Management program)

How does the Booth experience compare to your parent school? Booth has hardworking and active students, good professors and a lot of club activities.

What was most surprising or disappointing to you? It's a bit boring here compared to France. The safety and security situation in Chicago and Hyde Park is bit disappointing.

How do you see the exchange program experience impacting your career goals? Not much, as I am not trying for a job in the U.S.

Richa Singh (IE Business School, Spain - 1 year MBA)

How does the Booth experience compare to your parent school? It has less diversity compared to IE, with underrepresentation of many European, Middle Eastern and African countries.

What was most surprising or disappointing to you? Booth students do not participate that much in UChicago events!

How do you see the exchange program experience impacting your career goals? I am targeting the finance sector, so the Booth experience fits well in the overall scheme of things.

Last Updated 11/19/13
Last Updated 11/19/13