Are you a recent graduate or a graduate with less than three years work experience? Are you looking for the next step to success? Grand Valley's full-time integrated MBA (FIMBA) program may be just the step you are looking for. The number alone show the impact this program has for a successful future:
66% of employed FIMBA students were offered and a job, and still currently work with their fellowship company. The average income for a FIMBA graduate is 48% higher than their peers. In planning for the 5th year of FIMBA, there are currently 30 applications to date!
Are you liking these odds? Do you think FIMBA is the next step for you? Would you just like more information? Stop by the Seidman Graduate Office to talk to a counselor. Or call us at (616) 331-7400 to set up an appointment or ask questions. We look forward to helping you decide on the next step for your successful future!
FIMBA is the perfect fit for someone like me - just out of school without a whole lot of experience and looking to jumpstart their career."
Haley TeBos is a graduate from the inaugural year of FIMBA. She completed her fellowship at Priority Health with two rotations, one in Operations and one in Product Development. With such a broad fellowship, she was able to develop relationships with individuals across many areas of the organization. Priority Health gave her multiple opportunities to contribute to meaningful projects and to lead short term initiatives.
"A long-term MBA fellowship is a lot different from a traditional internship - expectations are higher even when you may not know the subject matter, but it's a chance to prove your value, build positive relationships and apply techniques and theories learned in the classroom," said Haley. "I think it's fair to say that it was an excellent experience - I'm still in Product Development 3 years later! I wouldn't have even been considered for the position that I'm in without being a part of the FIMBA program and fellowship."
After looking back at her time with FIMBA, Haley found that her cohort class was what made her memories some of her favorites. She will always remember and value the closeness of this group during the trips and through this grueling, yet successful 14 month program. In order to aid those looking at FIMBA Haley described who she would recommend the FIMBA to.
"From my perspective, FIMBA students need to possess a balance of skills and understanding between theory and application - between book smart and street smart," said Haley. "The emphasis placed on the job-seeking skills really set us up well for our futures in the workplace." For those of you currently in the program or looking to apply in the coming years, Haley has shared advice on what she took out of the program.
"I would advise students to take all that they can out of this program. Never be afraid to ask questions, challenge the norm, and seek projects outside of you comfort zone - you may just surprise yourself!"
Haley still lives in Grand Rapids and continues to work for her former fellowship organization, Priority Health. In May of 2014 she was promoted to Senior Product Administrator!
The General Management Admission Test (GMAT) is a requirement for all MBA programs at Grand Valley. It is not necessary for you to have this completed before beginning your application. This is computer adaptive test consists of four sections and has a total exam time of 3.5 hours. The following chart from the GMAT website depicts how the exam is written:
To prepare you, Grand Valley offers FREE GMAT preparation workshop. The sessions cover test-taking skills and techniques and helps you develop your own study plan for each of the four components of the exam. These sessions are two one-half day sessions held in the L. William Seidman Center. The first day will focus on the verbal and writing sections of the exam. It will introduce students to strategies on how to be "test smart" and help them to develop self-study programs. The second day will focus on the quantitative section and will help students form a self-study program in this area as well. To register call the Business Graduate office at (616) 331-7400 or send an email to email@example.com. Provide an address in this email so that a reminder can be mailed to you prior to the next session.
Next GMAT workshop:
To keep up to date on when GMAT prep workshops are offered visit our webpage and click on events.
If you are looking for a more in-depth course, Grand Valley offers a six-week course for a low cost of only $99. Click here to learn more about this course.
You can start now by purchasing a good GMAT preparation book and studying over break. You can still take the GMAT before the FEB 15th FIMBA application deadline for the 2015 cohort!
Call our office for more information on FIMBA, the GMAT, or popular guide books: (616) 331-7400.
Mike is currently completing his fellowship at Steelcase working on Conflict Minerals Legislation. This legislation is new and is a mandatory requirement for all publicly traded companies in the US. Mike is part of a team that searches Steelcase's supply chain for any materials that may be sourced from conflict mines. Mike's fellowship is providing him with personal work experience directly related to his future goals.
"I want to work in supply chain management to improve operational efficiency, sustainability, and social capital for an organization," said Mike. " This area of work interests me because I will need to draw upon my sustainability background and the analytic tools I'm currently learning from FIMBA."
Mike's favorite part of the program is working alongside his fellow cohort members. There are times that he feels overwhelmed; however, he knows it will be worth it in the long run.
"This program is helping me prepare for my future by providing me with the tools necessary to make management level decisions. I am also building my soft skills through project presentations and professional development classes," said Mike.
After his time thus far in the program, Mike would recommend that students take the time to build relationships with their fellow cohort members.
"You work way more effectively with your cohort than you do by yourself. I think the relationship with my fellow cohort will last long after the program and will be helpful in the future job search," said Mike.
Elizabeth is currently a Senior Business Development Specialist with Steelcase and has traveled to Chicago, New York City, San Fransisco, California, Seattle and many more.
FIMBA gave Elizabeth real world experience in professional development, etiquette, and building relationships.
"During our time with FIMBA we had the opportunity to make relationships with a group of individuals in China. We were then able to personally meet them on our international trip. One of the most powerful experiences with FIMBA, was the in-depth open conversations about economics, culture, and politics that we were able to have with a peer from another country," said Elizabeth.
When looking back at her 14 months with FIMBA, the one memory that sticks out to her the most is eating pigs brain, cows stomach, and ducks blood. In China, they were invited to a hot pot and they knew it would be disrespectful to not eat everything that was offered.
"After I had tried the cows stomach, I looked over and a gentleman from China asked me how I liked it. I said it was not too bad; however, when I asked him how he liked it, he admitted that he would never even eat it!" said Elizabeth.
Elizabeth would recommend this program to students that are looking to go through an accelerated MBA but with a quality experience.
"It's not just the classroom. There is a human element, travel and professional development incorporated into this program. However, be ready for a roller coaster. There are exciting times and then there are work your tails off times, but it will be worth it. Make sure you give your best without sacrificing your well-being. This program is intense at times but in the end it is incredibly rewarding," said Elizabeth.
The day Elizabeth finished FIMBA it was her husband's turn to get his degree and they moved to Madison, Wisconsin. Although, there was not a Steelcase office in Wisconsin her boss allowed her to work from home and to travel for business. Two months ago they moved back to Ann Arbor and her boss' response was, "great you are closer, no problem!"
To this day Elizabeth has valued the experience and knowledge she gained from FIMBA.
"We had dessert items such as a chocolate "bomb" that cracked open as the fuse burned down to reveal pop-rocks wrapped in rice paper. Many of the dishes were inventive and completely new to me," said Kenneth.
Kenneth would recommend this program for future students. He said although it is not for everyone, he believes there are many who could benefit from what the program has to offer. Kenneth is currently in his first year as a Financial Analyst for MarshBerry. FIMBA helped him by providing networking connections through professors, a wide breath of subject area familiarity, and confidence in his own abilities.
"FIMBA helped me find exactly the kind of position I was seeking when I came to GVSU," said Kenneth.
Kenneth wanted to remind future students that although grades are important; students need to take the time to build relationships and memories.
"Don't forget to have fun," said Kenneth.
ArtPrize is an international art competition that takes place annually in Grand Rapids, MI. For 19 days, the streets of downtown Grand Rapids are covered in different interpretations of art. These pieces take on a variety of art forms as well including paint, sculpture, film, dance, and many more! This event always takes place right around the same time, end of September-beginning of October. For FIMBA students, this experience would enhance your learning in different cultures and world views. However, best of all, this experience will relieve you from your busy schedule to an afternoon full of new people, amazing art, good food, and hopefully beautiful weather!
For more information on these pieces or any other component of ArtPrize, check out the official webpage at http://www.artprize.org/.
How do I secure my Fellowship?
As soon as you have submitted your application, the next step begins. You will go through an internal interview process with the FIMBA admissions committee. Once you successfully complete the interview, you will be offered preliminary admission, which means you have met all the academic requirements and are deemed right for the program. However, you will not be fully admitted into the program until you have secured a fellowship. To begin the fellowship process you will complete a career development seminar. This seminar will help you update your resume`, improve on your interview skills, build your LinkedIn profile and educate you on company partners, and roles. This seminar will help prepare you for the fellowship placement interview process.
Next you will engage in the open placement process. First, the FIMBA office releases students' information to employers. The company reviews all student profiles and then contacts those they want to interview. Each employer utilizes a unique interview process. The initial screening process takes two weeks and offers come at the end of this time period. The FIMBA students have the weekend to consider and must be ready on Monday to respond. Once a student has accepted a fellowship they are fully admitted to the program.
The FIMBA program will re-release the remaining students information to companies that are still looking. Students have until May to secure a fellowship and are more than welcome to bring additional organizations to the table. Fellowships typically begins in August; however, some students may have a company that will allow them to start earlier.
What we found is that it's a great way for the student to get to know us and us get to know them, and people who then join the company excel. As the school continues to build its reputation, we continue to see good talent come out of the program. It would be kind of crazy not to continue to build our relationship."
How does the Fellowship Play into the FIMBA Program?
The Business Fellowship provides students with real-world experience with local companies. FIMBA differs from other MBA programs because it incorporates an applied learning experience rather than theoretical learning. The students are able to take what they learn in class and apply it to a real-world work experience; such as, their fellowship. Therefore, students may also take skills they have learned at the their fellowship back into the classroom in order to educate others. This interactive learning style will help students both now and in the future.
A Representation of Current FIMBA Partners
The opportunity to train others and work as part of a dynamic team appealed to her and, Spectrum Health University offered Brenda a full time, non-entry level position as a Learning Adviser before she even graduated!
"There is no doubt in my mind I would not be in the position I am in, had I not done FIMBA," said Brenda.
When she looks back at her time with FIMBA she is amazed by how fast it went. Although there are so many memories, the one that stuck out to Brenda the most was the international trip. The FIMBA 2013 cohort traveled to Beijing and Chengdu, China and Ho Chi Minh Vietnam. She found this experience to be an eye opener and enjoyed having the time to experience the different cultures. It was also a bonus for her that she was able to experience this with close friends (cohort).
She would strongly recommend this program but suggests having a few years work experience going in.
"The program also has strong leadership who really want to see it succeed. I can't speak for other MBA programs, but if you are looking for one that adds a high level personal touch - FIMBA is a great choice," said Brenda.
After going through this program herself Brenda had a few words of wisdom that she wanted to pass on, "utilize your resources". She said it is important to take this opportunity to expand your network and to build connections whenever possible.
Quick and simple! These are two words that can be used to describe the process of applying for FIMBA. This post aims to answer any questions you may have on how to apply for the FIMBA program.
In order to be admitted to the Accelerated Full-Time Integrated MBA program (FIMBA), students must have recently completed an undergraduate program and have a GPA above 3.3. This program starts each June and the final application deadline is February 15th. Applications received by November 15th, will be reviewed and qualified candidates will be interviewed in December for an early admit decision.
Begin by filling out a graduate application, which can be found online at www.gvsu.edu/gradapply. There is also a $30 nonrefundable application fee (unless you have previously applied to Grand Valley). A copy of your official transcript will also need to be sent to the GVSU Admissions Office. If you are a student whose native language is not English, scores from either the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) or IELTS ( International English Language Testing System) will need to be submitted. These are the requirements needed to apply for a graduate degree program; however, there are also additional requirements for each individual program.
I know I said it would be quick and simple, so I understand if you need to take a break at this moment. It would be a good idea to grab a snack, take a walk, or feed your dog. You are half way through though so do not give up just yet!
For the FIMBA program, you will need to take the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) and score above a 500. This test is a requirement for all graduate business programs. I know, I know a test is the last thing you want think about ever, but don’t we will help you prepare. The Seidman College offers a GMAT preparation course! Just wait, I haven’t even told you the best part yet. It’s free! That is right, this course is available for you several times a year and it is free! For more information, feel free to contact the MBA office at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you wanted a more in depth course, GVSU offers a 6-week online preparation course. Click here for additional information and to enroll. For additional details on the GMAT test itself, visit the MBA website at www.mba.com.
Additionally, you will need to submit an essay/ personal statement, a resume, and a typed response to two essay prompts.
Now sit back and take a breath, stretch, maybe do your own little form of a victory dance. Why you might ask? Because you have done it! You have officially applied for the FIMBA program!
If you have any additional questions that may not have been answered by this blog post please do not hesitate to visit the website at http://www.gvsu.edu/business/fimba/. There are helpful tips if you click on the “future students” tab. Also feel free to stop by the graduate office in the Seidman building, room 1031or by email at email@example.com. Advisor contacts listed below.
· Claudia Bajema, Director (616) 331-7387 or firstname.lastname@example.org
· Koleta Moore, Associate Director (616) 331-7386 email@example.com
· Main Office: (616) 331-7400