G IS FOR GENERATIONS
Like many AU graduates, 2010 alumna Ranita Norman pursued her MBA to further her career in a field that she’s passionate about—which is working with individuals with developmental disabilities. Unlike many AU graduates, however, Ranita went through the MBA Program with her twin daughters, Jenny and Jasmine.
Ranita’s path to the MBA Program began in high school student, when she realized her passion for teaching and working with the disabled. During her college years, she pursued a license to teach disabled students, but began working for the State of Indiana after receiving a Bachelor’s degree in elementary education.
Years later, Ranita considered pursuing a better career track, which required more than an undergraduate degree. At the time, Ranita worked for the State of Indiana in DDRS (Division of Disability and Rehabilitative Services), where she became the Director of Provider Relations. She has recently been promoted to work with BQIS (Bureau of Quality Improvement) as Director of Quality and Training Initiatives.
“I thought that my MBA could enhance my career,” said Ranita. “It would be more beneficial with a business degree, so I could combine my passion with the disabled.”
Ranita’s daughters Jenny and Jasmine were also enthusiastic about the program, so the three students enrolled in the program as members of the Lawrence cohort.
“They were a tremendous source of encouragement to me,” said Ranita. “They were just out of school, so it was easier for them, but they helped me with math and we all worked together.”
One of Ranita’s proudest accomplishments during the program was completing a Southwestern Airline case study as a final project in Dr. Jeffrey Buck’s class. “You just get this sense of pride and accomplishment,” said Ranita. “It happens when you conquer something difficult.”
Another shining moment was presenting her business plan on House of Rae, a small business Ranita is developing with her sisters that includes a flower shop and wedding planning.
“When I finished my business plan presentation, one of my team members jumped up and gave me a hug!” said Ranita. “I felt as if the slides, presentation and visual props were truly professional.”
While returning to school was not always easy, Ranita found the experience worthwhile. “This was a win-win across the board,” said Ranita. “For someone considering getting their MBA, do it! It gives you the cutting edge on jobs—and life in general. It creates a better standard of expectations and what you want out of your life.”
H IS FOR HEALTHCARE
Five Residential MBA students have finished their degrees and made the transitioned to medical school to become physicians. Two of our alumni share stories of their experience.
MBA ’09 alum Jake Jackson is starting his third year at A.T. Still University.
I chose to get my MBA because I would like to either run my own private practice or get involved with administrative duties at a hospital, and I chose AU for two reasons: since it’s where I went for my undergraduate degree, I knew the quality of the education, and it was only a one-year program, which was ideal for me.
The MBA program didn’t directly prepare me for medical school due to the fact that they are two completely different disciplines. However, the aspect of professionalism and other areas definitely prepared me for entering a world of professional education.
Getting an MBA will make you extremely marketable and give you ‘an edge’ when applying for jobs after graduating medical school. Hospitals will not only see you as a physician but a consulting asset.
What’s my best memory of the MBA Program? The entire Europe trip!
Recent graduate Jason White is starting his first year at Indiana University.
I first considered the program because I wanted to take a year off from the traditional medical track to get married and settle into that relationship before starting medical school. I chose to enroll in an MBA over other options because I felt that I understood the science behind medicine, but because healthcare is also an industry and a business, I needed a broader understanding in order to be a truly competent doctor.
Too many doctors are all about the science, and when they get to a professional setting they can’t understand why their patients won’t get certain tests or why the hospital doesn’t have the latest and greatest technology; they never learned how to manage a business and make decisions for the good of the whole organization.
The graduate level coursework somewhat prepared me for the level of study I will do in medical school, but I think the real benefit of the program is that it prepared me to work as a doctor and work in the hospital setting.
Eventually, I would like to become a primary care physician and work in a small practice or in an inner city setting, possibly one where I use my skills in Spanish and manage a clinic.
My best memory of the MBA Program is probably the business plan competition. It was the business plan where I first felt my ideas come together. Also, the fact that my team planned a medical practice and that we did so well in the competition was a big encouragement to me.