Fred, a former marine who was deployed twice in Operation Iraqi Freedom, came to Booth to facilitate his transition to the civilian world and a career in investment banking.
One of the perceptions about Booth is it’s very theoretical. We do cover theory, but it’s not the focus. The professors will discuss theory and the results of years of analysis, but they'll also show how concepts can be applied in daily life and in our careers going forward. It’s great to be able to get the upshot of recent studies by some of the best and brightest minds in so many fields and find a way to use that in whatever field we decide to pursue.
I'm married, but my wife is not in Chicago. She stayed out in San Francisco when I made the decision to come here to Booth. It’s never easy being long distance but we've done our best to find a way to make it work.
I try to go home as often as I can. Thanks to Booth’s flexible curriculum, I can set my schedule - maybe take classes with the Evening MBA Program students - so I can take a three-day or four-day weekend and visit my wife out of state.
I am a co-chair of the Armed Forces Group, a student group for veterans of US and foreign militaries. The group also welcomes people who have worked for the Department of Defense or other State Department government agencies. It’s really about bringing people together and helping them make the transition from a government or military role to the private sector.
The Armed Forces Group has helped me so much with my academics and with securing a summer job that I decided very early on that I wanted to be a co-chair for the 2011–12 academic year. Members from the group were always taking time out of their days to help explain difficult concepts, or to walk me through any concerns I might have had. I just wanted to give back and help other veterans as I was helped during this entire process, even before I showed up on campus.
One of my big concerns about coming from a nontraditional background like the military was whether I’d be able to parlay my experience into a career I’d be really interested in. At Booth, there’s no stigma attached to being a career switcher. The school did a fantastic job of helping me partner up with Career Services, second-year students, Career Advisors, and student groups to help me figure out what I wanted to do and to identify those things in my past that actually were an asset in terms of helping me secure a great summer job. I learned it’s just a matter of how you take what you did in the past and translate it into something successful for your search.