The Masters in Management program at George Mason University was designed for students like Jacob George, MSM ’17. George received a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering with original career aspirations of working in an automotive manufacturing company, but a new product development course in his senior year changed everything.
“At some point I got captivated by the idea of owning my own business. And so after graduation, I found myself reassessing my career goals,” says George.
As part of that reassessment, George realized that he needed a strong business foundation if he was going to become an entrepreneur.
“I was looking at several master’s programs and the program at Mason fit perfectly with my goals,” says George. “It was an accelerated program so I knew I would be done within a year. Also, the location was a huge factor in my decision. I knew the proximity to Washington, D.C. and the opportunities that came with it would be hard to find anywhere else. Finally, I had talked to several MSM alumni and faculty at admission sessions and it really left me with a feeling of being at home at Mason and that the faculty and career services really cared about every individual student’s success.”
For George, Mason lived up to his expectations, and he excelled in the program, earning himself the Outstanding Student Award for the Masters in Management program at graduation.
George says the most rewarding experience for him was the diversity of his classmates, both in culture and education. “Our cohort had students from China, Saudi Arabia, India, and several other countries as well. On top of that, we all had completely different undergraduate degrees.” Although George says he thought the differences would be difficult for group projects, it was the opposite. “We all brought different perspectives and ideas to the class discussions and we learned a lot more than we would have otherwise.”
In addition, George’s experience interning for a startup company offered him the first-hand view of what it is like to start a business. “I worked closely with the founders and learned a lot about some of the challenges and struggles related to establishing their presence as a new company in the marketplace.” George says he witnessed triumphant moments such as when the company won a contract. “All in all, it was the perfect internship for me. I definitely left the internship with a better understanding of the effort as well as the risks and benefits associated with starting a business.”
Currently, George is working as a business analyst at Universal Consulting Services, and says the MSM program prepared him for whatever future he chooses to pursue.
“I think one of the great ways the MSM experience has prepared me for the professional world was through team work and group projects,” says George. “During the MSM program, we were able to hone our team work, communication, and organizational skills.”