Different Strokes, Different Folks at SIBM Pune
SIBM Pune is a potpourri of students from diverse educational backgrounds.
Every year, thousands upon thousands of MBA applications are submitted to and processed by top MBA programs across the world. Many of these students will come from the field of business administration, commerce and engineering. In India, it is an observed trend that engineers are very likely to pursue an MBA – whether it’s to find a new career path and break away from the faceless clutter in the industry; or to tackle the problem of market saturation and oversupply of similar skills by adding more to their qualifications; while some just hit an early mid-life crisis!
A ‘traditional’ B-School applicant usually has a Management or an Engineering background, with work experience in their line of work and a clear plan for where they’re going. For them the process of settling into B-School and chalking out their career paths is certainly easier…it’s a logical progression in their careers.
Now there also exists the non-traditional B-School applicant. The applicant may be a lawyer looking for value addition, a designer ready to apply a creative spin to the workplace, a paramilitary officer with corporate dreams, a linguistic major with a passion to learn, a psychology or hospitality graduate seeking opportunities in a new field.
These examples are just a sample of the stories that make up the diverse student body at SIBM Pune. Students come here from various streams, including engineering, economics, arts, commerce and management, psychology and even law. The presence of ‘non-traditional’ MBA students amplifies the learning process, bringing in different perspectives on the subject matter. Adding to their own attitudes and opinions, and their own relevant skillsets, their presence augments the learning experience for the ‘traditional’ students as well.
Engineers from Mechanical, Chemical, Computer Science, Electronics and Civil streams admit that the intricacies of programme coordination and growth, budgeting, funding and marketing elude them. They have chosen to pursue their MBA to improve their skills and prospects, to become functional and high-performing… not just in their work environment but in life.
Shashvat Mishra (MBA I Finance) is a practitioner of law in the real estate sector. He identified a need for managers who can analyse project viability beyond its legal aspect and understand the complexity of the financial language as well. He saw that pursuing an MBA would help create or find new avenues. Similarly, students who come from the stream of arts also look to venture into new careers and improve their job prospects.
Varun Dere (MBA I Marketing), a graduate in hospitality management says, “Coming from the hospitality industry gives me a more professional outlook towards work, presentation and grooming.” Shashvat Mishra points out that studying law provides the student with an improved analytical ability; after all, “Law involves studying the small details to see the whole picture.”
To a large extent, it’s a matter of perception – coming from a different career path and stream of education can be treated by the student as an advantage or disadvantage. One challenge that is clearly observable is adjusting to new subjects. Students agree that there is an initial struggle with subjects such as financial management, statistics and operations, but this can be overcome with hard work.
Some challenges are more unconventional. Gaurav Jain (MBA I Finance) is a Paramilitary officer and Marine Engineer. He finds coming to a civil college different as he is used to wearing uniforms day in and out. However, he appreciates the rules and discipline at SIBM Pune, they make him feel at home.
Akanksha Tyagi (MBA I HR), a psychology graduate, admits that she was impressed by the diversity of experience, intellect and perceptiveness at SIBM Pune. She sees her time here as a wonderful opportunity to build a professional network, through alumni and peer groups, to help her overcome the challenge that is navigating the business world.
Priyanshu Rana (MBA I Marketing), on the other hand, is a graduate in Fashion Technology. He is keen on gaining as much industry exposure as possible. So that one day, he may learn to apply it in new ventures.
Ultimately, it’s not about the course they’ve already studied – it’s about the drive, the zeal and eagerness to learn more that has brought these diverse students to SIBM Pune. These students are prepared to pursue their MBA, coming together and growing to become insightful leaders in their workplace and community.