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MBA Alumni meet current MBA Students

Each semester, the MBA Team arranges the event “MBA Alumni meet current MBA Students “. This time, eight MBA-alumni, working with KPMG, Daimler, Rutronik, 1&1 Internet SE, Accenture, MoneyGram International and Continental, visited their MBA alma mater. The event is highly appreciated by current MBA students, as it gives opportunity to gain useful insights, engage in discussion and build a network.

Gopikrishna Badhrinarayanan (MBA Class of 2013), CIO Digital Strategy at KPMG Deutschland, was the first in line to introduce himself. He spoke about his decision of doing the MBA after having worked for Tata Group in India.  Gopikrishna now works in Frankfurt and spoke about the challenges in consulting business at his employer, one of the "big four" consulting firms.

Yan Jiang (MBA Class of 2013) works as Global Support for Rutronik, a family-owned company near Pforzheim distributing electronic components. She pointed out that the MBA helps understanding the international culture and getting a broader perspective. Yan is a good example of someone taking the opportunity of this program to switch careers, in her case from literature to a business role in a high tech company. She also stressed the importance of learning the German language, especially when working for family owned companies.

Rocio Elizondo (MBA Class of 2013), Assistant Manager - IT Compliance Consultant at KPMG Deutschland. Her top recollections from the MBA at Pforzheim University were the Economics classes (which gave a clear understanding of the changing world), the Negotiation Skills Workshop, the MBA exchange semester at the Indian Institute of Management in Ahmedabad and all the connections made during the course. Her Master’s thesis at SAP was the key to tapping the job at KPMG. Moreover, she shared how German recruiters think while hiring and that they were looking for consistency, diversity and internationality.

Sarah Neumann (MBA Class of 2011) is working as a Purchase Consultant at the Trucks division & SL car at Daimler AG. She said, “Once in a lifetime, get an experience of quitting your job. It gives you unparalleled freedom of thinking”. As that is exactly what she did before starting her MBA in Pforzheim. Great networking opportunity during this course, international experience, and an MBA study abroad semester in Macao gave her an open view of the world. During the MBA, Sarah developed the habit of reading “The Economists” which also gave her a clear understanding of things happening around her. As per her experience, an internship or Master’s thesis were an easier and more efficient way of entering a company, as recruiters got a first-hand view of someone’s knowledge and skills and chances of securing a permanent job increased tremendously.

Paritosh Sharma (MBA Class of 2016), Product Manager at 1&1 Internet SE, said the MBA Pforzheim gave opportunity and time to explore and select one's way forward. During the program, he did extensive networking during several internships and a work student job. He met Gopikrishna in an Alumni Meeting during his studies, which helped him secure an internship opportunity in an innovation consulting firm. “Switching from a technical profile to a managerial profile was a smooth transition”, Paritosh confirmed. All internships and work student Jobs done, was because of networking with alumni. The last internship with 1&1 helped him receive a permanent job as a Product Manager at the same company. “There is always room for improvement, so you have to be ready in all aspects” he said from Company Project experience. Grades and German language proficiency are factors which will give edge over other job applicants, so it payed off to have good grades and good command of German.

Ali Emre Kartoglu (MBA Class of 2012), Area Sales Manager at MoneyGram International, stated that the MBA Pforzheim gave him a great international cultural exposure which could not be found in any book. After the MBA, he wanted to enter the field of sales, which is why he wrote his Master’s thesis at Daimler AG with the Trucks Division. Ali suggested that students should not to take the first job opportunity, but to rather consider future expectations and goals.

Bibin Tom (MBA Class of 2015), Operations Consultant at Continental, said the MBA provided him with knowledge for the managerial way of thinking coming from an engineer’s perspective. He stated that a work student job at Knorr-Bermse resulted in acquiring a Master’s thesis opportunity with them. Bibin suggested getting a few German company names on the resume through work student jobs, internships or a Master’s thesis. Current responsibilities have given him an opportunity to go to the USA for 2 years for a project that must be implemented in plants across the world.

Manuel Paredes Castro (MBA Class of 2014) is a Technology Consultant at Accenture. With his technological background, he wishes to start his own company someday. He decided to do his international MBA and get a few years of experience to understand different managerial aspects. During the MBA, Manuel had an opportunity to do a company project with Bosch, where the cultural diversity experience was very helpful. By that time, he got the opportunity to work with Accenture and had gained German knowledge.

After all alumni had reported from their MBA and post-MBA experiences, current MBA students had the opportunity to ask questions regarding job hunting, MBA experiences in detail, career changes and more. There was time to chat while having some pizza and beverages. We very much appreciated the event and would like to thank all alumni for coming to Pforzheim and sharing their valuable experiences with current MBA students! The next alumni meeting in this format will take place on January 19, 2018.