I’ll admit that I was a little ‘in the dark’ when I first started studying for my Online MBA. I had never combined education with full-time employment – and to throw another factor in the mix, I had also never had a child before.
As I approach the birth of my second child (yes, you read correctly), with a full-time job still firing on all cylinders, amid my studies and, not to mention my very active one-year-old, there are times when I question my sanity in taking on so much simultaneously.
However, the thought which gets me through is, ‘If not now, then when?!’
Studying won’t be made any easier when I have multiple toddlers and, as the Online MBA adds so much value to my professional life daily, I knuckle down, knock reality TV (my guilty pleasure) on the head and get on with it. While I do sometimes wish for a shorter to-do list, I am also overwhelmed by appreciation for the opportunity to work, study and raise the family I have always wanted. It’s the best MBA for me.
The other factor which I have to mention is my support network – mainly my husband. I’m not a wonder woman heroine and I do have a true partner in crime, who (after longer working days than my own) makes me dinner most nights, regularly picks our daughter up from nursery and does the bath, bottle, bed routine, while I’m studying late into the night. He is literally there when I need a pick-me-up to reassure me that I can reach the light (or degree certificate) at the end of a busy, challenging, but so-worthwhile tunnel. It’s the support I have from those around me which gets me through and I would certainly recommend it.
To give a sense of what the Online MBA is like, I’m currently in the midst of a module on ‘Corporate Finance’, fresh from ‘Economics’. I only have myself to blame as these are self-selected modules – chosen in my wisdom to push myself outside of the Marketing comfort zone. My first year proved to be very varied, studying the core principles of business management – from Accounting & Finance, Organisational Behaviour & Human Resource Management to Strategy and Operations Management. I’m currently over half-way through my taught studies and genuinely look forward to the start of each new module, as I know there is such a lot of great content and activity to learn from, which is making me better at my job.
This is no coincidence though, the University of Birmingham’s Online MBA has been specifically designed to create a supportive, motivating and engaging virtual experience. Every week there is a whole host of different activities, discussions and new ideas within a user-friendly, highly interactive learning environment. I’m also studying alongside business professionals from all over the world, which brings an exciting global perspective to top-notch content.
While I am thoroughly looking forward to graduating and having additional ‘free’ hours in my week, I know at the same time I’ll miss it. The feeling of progress, professional development and network expansion is second-to-none. The experience may be only temporary, but the vast array of skills, contacts and CV kudos will last a lifetime. So, if you’re thinking about your next career move or how to accelerate your professional trajectory – kids or no kids – you should consider an Online MBA and add the University of Birmingham to your list of contenders, you won’t regret it!
Author: Harriet Jeckells, current Online MBA student, Director of Brand Management.