#MIPexperience International Full Time MBA
Celebrating global stories in continuous transformation
| Author: Roberto Niño Betancourt
The International MBA program at MIP has a very magical element. It is made up of different stories and points of view from opposite sides of the planet, that coincide for the duration of a year in Milan. As promised, this time I will be introducing two of my MBA colleagues and friends: Renata Cabral Sturani from Brazil and Rohit Vigg from India, who share here their life-changing experiences.
Why did you decide to pursue an MBA program?
Renata: Ever since I started my career in investment banking ten years ago in São Paulo, I have known that I wanted to enroll in an MBA program. However, I postponed my decision several times, because luckily my job was so vibrant and full of opportunities. As I grew in my career, it became clear to me that I needed to broaden my horizons. I graduated with a degree in economics and had a strong background in finance, but I had the desire to understand businesses beyond financial models and have a more holistic view about industries across the globe.
Rohit: Before September 2018, my life had a monotonous feeling; being in the IT industry in India takes a lot out of you and the struggle of competing with billions makes us more susceptible to change. There is a point in your career where you are stuck with the same kind of work with no learning opportunities or future growth. This can be because of outdated skills or depends on how comfortable you are with the current state of the work environment. For me personally, I wanted a boost, a push to my career and MIP was the answer, exposing me to a whole new world of people, organization and culture.
What was your previous life like, back in your hometown?
Renata: While I was preparing for the MBA application process I got pregnant, which was wonderful news. In that moment, I wasn’t at all intimidated by the challenge of pursuing an MBA and simultaneously taking care of my child. In Brazil, my routine as an investment banker included long workdays. I used to work 12 to 14 hours a day, and sometimes on weekends; however, even with this schedule, I enjoyed my job. I had no doubt in my mind that my proven track record of excellent time management skills would help me in this journey, but I certainly underestimated how challenging it would be. After my daughter was born, a regular day in Brazil included getting up early, around 5 a.m., with little to no sleep during the nights.
Rohit: A regular day in Delhi included me getting out of bed in the morning and getting ready for work, a job which was challenging both mentally and physically and had no further scope for the future.
What is your normal day like, living in Milan?
Rohit: Compared to Milan and life at MIP, my old life seems pretty easy. The routine here is tougher, you have to get up earlier and run to the class, but with the satisfaction of structuring your career. MIP has given us a platform where each of us can re-engineer our life and give it a path of our own. Even though we miss our friends and family back home, MIP has opened up a whole new set of multicultural friends and a new family from all around the word. Cooking has always been a passion of mine ̶ as I am an amazing home chef, I usually used to cook for my family during the weekends. But now I get the opportunity to cook every day. No-one can replace a meal which was home-cooked by your mother, but sometimes I feel inspired when someone praises my food. I guess I have increased the spice threshold for some Europeans back in my apartment!
Renata: Looking at my life in Italy now that I am at MIP, I feel that my old life in Brazil as an investment banker and then as a new mother prepared me for the demanding routine of the MBA. My daily routine in Milan includes getting up at around 6.30 a.m., taking my now 14-month-old daughter, Diana, to daycare, and then running to catch the train for class. Usually, I get home after 20.00 and my daughter is already sleeping. Once I am back home, I continue to study and I go to bed around midnight every day. I do feel overwhelmed at times; however, the feeling of accomplishment outweighs this. I am very fortunate to have the unconditional support of my husband (who is Italian) and his family along this journey. I miss my family a lot but try to Skype with my loved ones as much as possible. It is also great way to expose my daughter to the Portuguese language!
What makes this MBA journey special?
Renata: At MIP, I have learned that diversity takes on a whole new meaning. Among the students in our class I’ve found 20 different home countries that are represented, as well as an array of different professional backgrounds. That alone is an incredible experience, as it helps one develop sensitivities to different backgrounds. Such a level of sensitivity and respect for your colleagues is necessary when working in a global environment.
Rohit: The feeling of Freedom, which is accelerating and sometimes gives us a sense of maturity. Missing home is a part of my routine now, but sometimes I replace this with an aperitivo, exploring the city with friends, new Italian cuisines and campus beer. Up until now it has been a roller-coaster ride, and I think it’s not going to end soon. With excitement in my heart, I could not have asked for a better opportunity than MIP.
Stay tuned for the next chapter, where I will give you my personal tips and advice for applying to the International MBA program at MIP…
About the author
Roberto Niño Betancourt
Roberto is a student of the International full time MBA. He is a Colombian filmmaker and new media artist based in Milan. He has collaborated as a post producer for MTV Latin America, as well as many European production companies. He is very passionate about international cross-cultural collaborations, craftsmanship and the sustainable conservation of natural resources.