Summer at Stern: Taking it Slow or Doing It All (The Benefits of a Flexible MBA Program)

IMG_5163As a Langone MBA student, you’re never short on things to do year-round, especially over the summer! The Langone program’s flexibility allows students to go as quickly or slowly as they’d like through the program (within the six-year time frame), which enables students to take classes over summer to speed up their coursework. The first Summer session just came to a close and I completed 4.5 credits in a six-week period – which would take 12 weeks over a full-length Fall or Spring semester. Since I’m completing my second year in the program, I only have a couple required core classes left, and am otherwise taking only electives to fulfill my specialization requirements (Marketing; Entertainment, Media, and Technology; and Strategy). So I took a Strategy elective, Managing Change, and my second to last required core course, Professional Responsibility.

It was great to balance an elective with a core course. I was able to engage my interests (Managing Change covers topics like the Internet of Things, the future of business, how to design and implement a change plan effectively, and how to align a strategy to meet these future-focused business goals) while also grounding myself in foundational knowledge that all business leaders need (Professional Responsibility covers markets, ethics, and law, and the professional business leader’s role in balancing the three in an ethically responsible way).

Now in Summer 2 I’m taking a 3-credit elective, Digital Strategy, which applies towards my Entertainment, Media, and Technology specialization. Due to the condensed summer schedule, I’ll finish the course in six weeks, as opposed to the twelve weeks a 3-credit course would take over Fall or Spring. Then I’m taking my last required core course in Late Summer Intensives, which is an even more condensed schedule (usually meeting four times a week for two weeks for a 1.5-credit course and four times a week for a month for a 3-credit course), which is Business Communication. Once summer ends, I’ll only have 13.5 credits left until I graduate in May! Without the flexibility and option for an intensive schedule that the Langone program offers, I would not have been able to complete my coursework as quickly.

Beyond the classroom, summer is also a great time to stay socially active with your Langone classmates. Langone Student Government (LSG) has started a social initiative called “Bar Blast” and plans weekly happy hours over the summer when our full-time counterparts are off.  We have a meeting place after summer classes to socialize, grab a drink, and network. This is a new initiative that just started this summer and there’s been a great turnout each week, so it’s something LSG will continue into next year. During the Fall and Spring, happy hours are planned through Core Groups so there is always a weekly social event on the calendar to balance out classes (not to mention ongoing events through other LSG committees and Stern MBA clubs, with hotly anticipated, annual events like the Langone Retreat, Charity Ball, and Spring Fling—to name a few!).

While all this is going on over summer, there are Langone students that opt to take the summer off and take a long, relaxing break from mid-May through mid-September. You can also take only Summer 1, only Summer 2, or only Late Summer Intensives, or any combination of the three – whatever works best with your schedule and your life outside of Stern! Even though I am enrolled in all three sessions this summer, I still get a three-week break in August, which I’m really looking forward to, and have a week-long beach vacation planned while I’m off – so you really can do it all!

Heather Luciano

About Heather Luciano

Heather is a student in the Langone Part-time MBA program specializing in Marketing, Entertainment, Media, and Technology, and Strategy. She is the VP of Philanthropy for the Langone Student Government, and is a member of the Graduate Marketing Association, Entertainment, Media, and Technology Association, Strategy and Operations Club, Social Enterprise Association, Stern Women in Business, and Cellar. Outside of Stern, Heather is currently a Regional Account Manager at Macmillan Science & Education and is also the Chair of Young to Publishing Group Cares, a community service initiative of the Association of American Publishers.

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