Leadership Opportunities at Stern

Before I joined NYU Stern’s Tech MBA program, as an aspiring manager, I always wondered what opportunities would the school provide for me to grow as an impactful leader? How would these compare to the two-year MBA program? And, how do I prepare to arrive at school so I can best leverage these opportunities?

After completing almost a full year in the program, there are a number of opportunities I participated in that helped me strengthen my leadership & management skills while making the most of the program. I hope you consider participating in these as you choose to pursue your own Tech MBA!

  1. Cohort Leader Opportunity: Early in the academic year, Stern gives a taste of what winning an election must feel like, haha! Jokes aside, students elect a cohort leader who serves as a liaison between the administration and your Tech MBA class.  
  2. MBA Admissions Graduate Assistantship: Into the second semester, Admissions Committee selects 3-4 candidates as the face of Stern’s Tech MBA program. These students regularly mentor, guide and serve as ambassadors for both the aspiring MBA students and the admitted students. *wink* they’re the best *wink* As a GA, I have loved talking with so many of you about your journey to business school!
  3. Professional Club Opportunities: There are a number of professional clubs which provide important board positions for the Tech MBA students. Every year, 1-2 students get elected to executive positions within Stern Tech Association, Management Consulting Association, Data Analytics Club, and more. This serves as an excellent opportunity to shape the experience of Tech MBA students for next decade, especially given how the Tech MBA is still relatively new.
  4. Fun Club Opportunities: In addition to professional clubs, Stern also has a lot of special interest and affinity clubs. I personally am closely involved with Stern Football Association, Stern Follies, South Asian Business Association at Stern and Stern Comedy Club. So, spread your wings and find where your affinity lies – most clubs reserve a leadership position for Tech MBA students, which is a great way to get even more involved.
  5. Orientation Leader: Each year, the Office of Student Engagement recruits 4 Orientation Leaders who work to enable a smoother transition for the upcoming cohort. Personally, the Orientation Leaders were real gems when it came to guiding my initial exploration through the program after moving to New York from India last year. I am thankful for their wisdom, and the it seems like a really fun position!
  6. Miscellaneous: Apart from the aforementioned formal opportunities, Stern’s diverse, EQ-centered community continually presents other platforms to rise up and shine as a community leader. Just last semester, when we were struggling with Finance, some knights in shining armor rose up to use their professional experience to guide us in our projects :). Additionally, students who went through the Fall recruiting process and have their job secured have been hosting casing practice and mock interviews for those of us doing just-in-time recruiting in Spring. Even in small groups, Stern students show their leadership and commitment to helping fellow students.

To summarize, not only are there a ton of opportunities available for students to explore, you will also be able to create your own opportunities as you navigate through this amazing journey at Stern.

5 Ways for Tech MBAs to Meet Other MBAs at Stern

If you’re admitted and decide to join Stern’s Tech MBA cohort, you should be careful not to only focus on mingling with your close classmates. Instead, find ways to reach out to the broader MBA community. While I’m not disregarding the importance of developing sustainable relationships within the Tech MBA class, the nature of the program will offer plenty of opportunities to do so by default. That being the case, here are five ways that I’ve made the most out of the Stern community by networking with other students in the various MBA programs. Remember, Stern has several other MBA programs including but not limited to the full-time program, fashion and luxury specialized program, part-time evening classes, and dual degree students.

1. General Interest Clubs

Most clubs are open to any MBA students and if there is a common interest, you can bet there is a club created for it. There are even a few leadership opportunities for Tech MBA students specifically in some of the technology-oriented clubs. Here is a list of all of the clubs that Stern has to offer.

2. Case Competitions

Several case competitions will float through your email inbox throughout your year at Stern. Case competitions are a great way to put your new business school knowledge to work while collaborating with other students at Stern. Most competitions even have a pretty substantial monetary reward! If you’re not familiar with case competitions, check out this Poets & Quants article on them.

3. Alumni Networking Events

Before mentioning alumni events, I feel as though I should mention is this first: don’t target recruiting events strictly as a way to network with your classmates. Recruiting events are designed to help students learn about companies, not students. Similarly, the pressure and competitive mindset of certain industries may make recruiting events high-stakes and stressful for attendees. On the contrary, alumni events are set up specifically for networking and meeting current and former students. Most alumni who come to these events have open arms and ears and are looking forward to meeting you. You can see a list of upcoming alumni events here.

4. Elective Classes

When the fall semester rolls around, Tech MBA students are viewed as second-year MBA students from a registration perspective. That means your classmates in electives will be composed of students from the full-time program who have known each other for at least a year. Make an effort to form class groups with students outside of your Tech MBA cohort and sit next to people you haven’t met yet. Here is a full list of elective classes.

5. Happy Hours & Social Events

Finally, the obvious one. Happy hours and social outings are often held at the end of the week, which happens to be Thursday in business school. Even if you don’t drink alcohol, your classmates will happily welcome you to these events. One of the most notable events is Beer Blast, which takes place every Thursday night, often following another great event called Stern Speaks. These events attract students from every program and are a great way to connect after a long week of classes.

I hope these five ideas help you make the most out of your year at Stern. It will fly by, so make sure to take advantage of as much as you can while you’re here!