The freedom to choose your courses at Booth stems from the recognition that each student is coming into this program with different skillsets, different perspectives, and different goals.
- September 16, 2016
The experience unites all Booth students in their ability to explore their passions from day one. A large part of this exploration is preparation. Whether you are looking to switch careers, prepare for your internship, start an entrepreneurial venture, or deepen your existing expertise in a given field, you can select the courses that meet your individual academic and professional goals.
The curriculum, faculty, and community are all designed to support you through every step of your career. Our goal is to equip you with the confidence and depth of analysis required to be successful in your next project, your next class, or your next job. Booth’s abundance of choice and breadth of offerings prepares students to make an impact from the first day of class. With the Class of 2018 already on campus and planning for their first year, they will choose among more than 170 classes offered at Booth.
Below, students tell us about some of the courses they chose to meet their personal goals.
There have been so many classes that have been really interesting and really relevant to what I’m interested in. In my Corporation Finance class one of the cases that we had the chance to work on was a movie sequel options case. It actually happened a week or so after I got my offer to intern with Paramount Pictures. It was fun, it was engaging, and it was a chance to really jump into something I very well could potentially be working on. I thought that was really a testament to the types of experiences that I have had in the classroom and how the learning isn’t just within the context of a class but it is much broader, much more applicable and relevant to why I came to Booth in the first place. - Michael Kurt, ’16
Having spent six years in financial services with a fairly solid skill set in certain areas, I knew I had some areas for development. I valued the flexible curriculum because I knew that there were specific skills I hoped to develop before internship recruiting started. I took classes like Managerial Decision Modeling, Revenue Management, Cost Analysis and Internal Controls, and Operations Management - all courses that I think prepared me to not only for the consulting interview process, but also to be successful once I was on the job. - Jenny Dunn, current student
One of the best things about Booth is the flexibility you have to tailor the MBA to what you do want to do, and I think that’s one of the most important things here. In my case, I took courses that are related to consumer understanding and development of new products because that’s my passion. One of my favorite courses was Developing of New Products and Services Lab. It’s pretty intense and you work with a real company. We had weekly touch points with an internationally known company. In the end we developed a new product for them by going through the whole process - from the needs, to the ideas, to finally coming up with a final product. - Ramiro Sanchez Caballero, '16
I came to Booth to take my career in risk management at a Japanese commercial bank to a role in international business development, specifically in Southeast Asia. I’m very interested in operations management in an international setting, so I'm choosing a lot of industry specific classes like Healthcare Operations, Applied Regression Analysis, and Big Data which give me exposure to many different industries. I learned organizational management skills from my Managing the Workplace class, taught by Professor Canice Prendergast. We learned theories and practices in human resource management, which I feel I need to learn for expanding our business in Southeast Asia and managing local operations. - Nobu Kawai, current student
Post MBA, I'm interested in working for an impact investing fund, which will allow me to source new investments for the fund. This year I participated in the Social Enterprise Lab in which I had an opportunity to help a nonprofit organization create a revenue generating business. I was able to really get into the field and think through the problems of social enterprises. Prior to Booth, I did not realize the level of interactions that I would have with local social enterprises and nonprofits. This was actually very helpful to me during my internship search process. Two of the portfolio companies for the venture philanthropy fund in which I'm interning with this summer, I actually met both of them through various activities here at Booth. I spoke to my Booth experiences during the interview process, and it was really impressive to them. - Brittany Henry, current student
I was looking for a school with solid foundation in business fundamentals, but also I wanted to try some entrepreneurial experiments. I took Commercializing Innovation: Tools to Research and Analyze Private Enterprises which gives you a framework and tools to analyze a business from the investor’s perspective. I think it is very important to understand the perspective from both an entrepreneur - and from an investor. Soon I will be working as a VC associate at the Chicago Innovation Fund and I will actually apply those frameworks I learned to look into a real world deal. I am super excited about those opportunities. - Ray Liu, current student
I came to school with a list of probably a dozen different business ideas that I wanted to explore. I saw business school as a great opportunity to get the mentorship I would need to be able to launch my own startup. Early on I took Building the New Venture with Professor Waverly Deutsch. Students take their business idea and work on it for the duration of the class. You practice different scenarios and events that could come up for your business, like a crisis for example. You then have to figure out how to deal with that problem. What it meant for us was researching and meeting different lawyers to learn how we could cover ourselves in such a situation. We then took our startup to the Social New Venture Challenge, which is Booth’s business competition for any sort of non-profit or for-profit social venture. - Sara Raffa, ’16
I thought it would be ideal for me to go to a business school where I get to make the experience my own and where I could choose the classes that I wanted, instead of having a generic curriculum chosen for me. Coming from an emerging country, I hope to work as a portfolio manager or equity analyst in an emerging market. The Analytics of Financial Crises class with Professor Anil Kashyap is one that I would never have the opportunity to have anywhere else. The level and the depth of the analysis are truly unique. The professors are really anchoring not only in a strong economic background of the School of Economics at Chicago, but also really bringing in practitioners and their perspective. It was a wonderful opportunity to learn from the best in the business. - Ziad Abouchadi, current student
I think Booth is a great place for instilling confidence in yourself. You are in this environment that feels safe, but you’re still pushed to limits in some respect. Leadership and Effective Development (LEAD) is the one required course that everyone takes and for me it was a really fun class exposing me to just jumping in and presenting in front of my peers. I had the great opportunity to practice some of those presentation skills when I participated in the Deloitte case competition this year. We were given a case problem and together with a team of three we had to prepare a presentation on a company that we hadn’t seen before and present it to three or four partners at Deloitte. It was a brilliant experience being pushed to the deep end presenting to quite senior people. It was a great confidence boost to know that in just two days you can understand what it takes to be a consultant. I know that these transferable skills learned through LEAD will be very useful in my internship when analyzing data, and then presenting it in a way that is understood. - Deepti Jodhawat, current student
Before I came to Booth, I probably would have had no idea that I had as much interest in marketing as I discovered here. What I found, especially through the courses Data-Driven Marketing with Professor Günter Hitsch and Pricing Strategies with Professor Jean-Pierre Dubé is that I absolutely love the way you can use analytics to inform marketing. I think that is a big piece of the future of marketing as big data becomes more readily available and easier to analyze through the new tools that are being developed in the market. I find it so interesting how a huge pool of customer data inform specific pricing strategies that will help a company increase its sales by 20% just from thinking about changing prices by one penny and what that impact is. - Emily Ruff, '16
Booth is known for its finance and economics, but its so-called "soft" classes are amazing! In Professor Ron Burt's Strategic Leadership in Management Networks class, we took an analytical view at successful networkers, and what drove their success. I learned how to leverage my own network at work and at school, a lesson I will carry with me for years to come! - Amruta Hunnurkar, current student
When I arrived to Booth, I was excited about looking at new industries. I took the Energy and CleanTech Lab focused on emerging technologies in the energy industry and renewables. It was a great opportunity to find out how different technologies can get to market. In this lab, the role of the students is to establish plans and work with real world partners on getting their technologies into the market through business plans, fundraising opportunities, and investment proposals. We focused on a coatings company that was bringing new coatings and application methods to the energy industry through automated drone technology. This was a fun and very practical business lesson I will use during my internship on the new markets entry team for Tesla's energy products in Palo Alto. - Erik Underwood, current student
The reason I enjoyed Financial Statement Analysis so much was that Professor Michael Minnis took a subject that I expected to be dull and made it very insightful, interesting, and interactive. During parts of the recruiting process later in the year, I found myself needing to look over a company's 10-K or 10-Q to get a better idea about their business and its performance. I was able to take many of the lessons applied here to quickly extract what I needed. - Nithin Kuchibhotla, current student
In addition to designing their own MBA experience, Booth students also become part of a community built on curiosity and exploration. The classes you take, the student groups you join, the career path you choose, the passions you pursue, and the people you meet all shape your experience.
We recently chatted with Monisha Shivakumar, ’19, about life at Amazon, her continued connection to Booth, and the benefits of our data-driven approach to education.Where Is She Now?
The new academic year at Chicago Booth brings innovative courses and major curriculum developments. Here's an overview.New Courses for 2019–20
The Davis Center supports leadership development at Chicago Booth. We asked center staff about Booth’s approach to leadership education.Seven Questions with the Davis Center