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Preprofessional Opportunities, Part 3: Pre-Business

We asked various students on preprofessional tracks to share more about their experiences at Emory so far. Today we hear about Pre-Business, written by Grace Cleland, 18B. Read Part 1: Pre-Med and Pre-Dental, Part 2: Pre-Nursing and Pre-Public Health, Part 4: Pre-Law, and Part 5: Pre-Veterinary.

Pre-Business: World-Changing Ideas

pre-business class

Did you choose Emory for business? What drew you to the program here?
Emory’s business program is one of the best in the country, and I believe it’s partially because every student has a liberal arts base that is unique to Emory. Most other schools will make you start immediately on the business program, but Emory students start in the college first which gives us a different outlook at business problems than the average Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) student.

Why business? What have you liked about it so far?
Business is involved in every part of our lives, especially in the United States. I am primarily interested in social enterprise and finding business solutions to social problems, and the business program at Emory really does help me achieve this. I love how applicable the information I learn in class is to the problems I face in the real world.

What resources does Emory have that you’ve taken advantage of?
Since starting a year ago, I fully utilized the PACE (Pre-Major Advising Connections at Emory) program that started over the summer, through which I was unsuspectingly introduced to the director of the Quantitative Social Science Major, now my double major. At an Emory Networking night, I met Emory alum Ian Cohen, who offered me my first real internship right after freshman year, and introduced to the idea of Educational Policy reform as a job (now my dream job). The staff in the business school have been more than supportive of my two majors and have worked tirelessly to make sure I get both done in time to graduate, including giving me priority registration for classes in the College and in the business school. Emory is honestly the only place I could do any of the things I am doing now.

What or who has been your favorite professor or class?
My favorite class so far has been Operations and Management in the business school with Professor Emily Bianchi. She is an incredible professor who knows how to keep students engaged. She’s one of those teachers that truly knows how to keep every type of student engaged in class. She addresses the concerns of every type of learner. Personally, I learn best through experience and in class, and she has us actually play out the phenomena we’re about to learn. For example, to learn about power dynamics, she had us divided into groups in which we had to negotiate while one person was in power; we did almost exactly what she had predicted! The subject itself is super interdisciplinary–it’s essentially a course in the psychology of business–and it involves anthropology, psychology, sociology, and more to predict human behavior and to apply it to a work setting.

In Professor Bianchi’s class, we were put in groups and assigned a case study to analyze and present. The goal was to use what we learned in class to identify what went wrong, why it went wrong, and what we can do to fix the problem. I was fully expecting a case centered around a company facing problems since we were in the business school, but our case turned out to be about a Varsity army crew team that was losing repeatedly to the JV team. It just goes to show how actually applicable this class is to everything we do.

What was your experience like as a pre-BBA?
I really enjoyed my experience as a pre-BBA because I kept my mind very open. I knew that I was going to the business school, but I still explored many other areas in the College, and as a result, I am now a double major in Quantitative Social Science with a focus on Public Policy!

Shreya Mohan
Shreya Mohan, 18B*, Goizueta Scholar
Bachelor of Business Administration, Strategy and Management Consulting, Concentration in Business and Society; Bachelor of Science in Quantitative Social Science, Concentration in Public Policy
Jacksonville, FL


Pre-Business: Think Differently


Did you choose Emory for business? What drew you to the program here?
I did not choose Emory for business. At the time when I was applying to colleges (and applied Early Decision I to Emory), I had no idea what I wanted to study. I chose Emory for the other great options and opportunities that exist here, and later on chose to study business.

Why business? What have you liked about it so far?
Business has always made sense to me, and I have always enjoyed thinking financially and economically. It is also easy to combine my enjoyment of business with my other passions, like film or music.

What was your experience like as a Pre-BBA? How has the transition to the business school been so far?
As a pre-BBA student, I was able to really get the most out of my liberal arts education, and fulfill my General Education Requirements. This was definitely made easier by the fact that I came in with some AP credits, because those also allowed me to apply early to the business school. The transition has been easy; the business school provides us with a wealth of information and resources to help us make a smooth transition from the College of Arts and Sciences to Goizueta.

Randy Miller
Randy Miller, 18B

Bachelor of Business Administration, Finance, Concentration in Film and Media Management
Bridgewater, NJ



Pre-Business: A Resource for Success


What resources does Emory have that you’ve taken advantage of?
The Career Management Center (CMC) at Goizueta has been extremely helpful in providing coaches and mentors to help you understand the field(s) you may be interested in and then prepare for recruiting in said field. Additionally, the alumni names they provide for networking is incredibly useful. If you provide the CMC with an industry or a company you’re interested in, they’ll provide you with a comprehensive list of the names and email addresses of Emory alums who work there so that you can connect with them. The Alumni Database is also helpful for this.

Who or what has been your favorite professor or class?
Illiquid Alternative Investments with Mark Bell. That basically means that we study unusual investments that are difficult to get in or out of. Everything Bell teaches is based around personal experience and is applicable to what’s going on in the world currently. We’ve gone on different field trips from hedge funds to art museums to put into context what we’re talking about in class. We’ve had a ton of speakers come lecture us who have amazing and unique careers in the fields we learn about, so everything comes full-circle. Greg Hagod, the co-founder of a hedge fund called Nephila, came to talk to us about alternative investments, and Bob Morett, a partner at Bain & Company, spoke to us about re-insurance, or insurance for insurance companies. It’s a result of Bell’s connections and alternative (pun intended) teaching style that allow us to have these opportunities that I haven’t been exposed to in any other class.

Could you explain what it’s been like being on a preprofessional track and also pursuing a concentration in the College of Arts and Sciences?
Being on a “preprofessional” track is great if you know what you want to do as a career right away. It provides a lot of useful knowledge that helps soften the learning curve once you begin working since many of your classes give you primary or background knowledge in the field you are going in to. However, that often means you are taking a narrow spectrum of courses, so I knew I wanted to diversify myself beyond just finance courses. Taking Spanish really isn’t directly applicable in any way to my consulting job I’ll be working at out of college, but it helps me think in different ways and use other, creative skills that you do not usually find in finance courses.

How has the business program at Emory prepared you for your career?
Goizueta has helped tremendously with giving me the resources to be successful. Like I said before, the mentorship, alumni, treks, relevant courses, and free access to business databases, to name a few, are more than enough to prepare you for finding and then being successful in a business career. It is certainly up to the individual to take advantage of these resources and be diligent in utilizing them properly, but assuming he or she does, Goizueta prepares you quite well for a professional career.

Ethan Samuels
Ethan Samuels, 15B

Bachelor of Business Administration, Finance; Spanish
Los Angeles, CA


*Emory University uses these abbreviations to designate graduation year.

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