Real Humans of the York University Schulich School of Business
Laura Damiani, York Schulich MBA
Why business school? Why now? As a Schulich alumni who graduated from the BBA program in 2015, I understand the immense value of a great education, and I always had an interest in furthering my learning. Today, I have the flexibility to complete the MBA program. I currently manage a luxury retail jewelry store that has been operating for over 60 years. As a future entrepreneur, I have a corporate responsibility to learn, improve, and change what is necessary. Business school provides a platform to update your knowledge on current issues and learn different perspectives from people in the industry, applying it effectively to your business.
Why the York University Schulich School of Business MBA program? What factors figured most prominently into your decision of where to attend? I wanted to continue my learning at one of the top business schools in the world. Schulich offers flexibility in completing the MBA program and students can study part-time or full-time and can switch accordingly. This option allowed me to continue working while becoming educated by some of the most successful people in their fields. Learning is case-based so it teaches you by application and real-life experiences. For instance, Schulich offers the 601 capstone course which allows students to do consulting work for a large corporation.
What do you think is your most valuable or differentiating contribution to your MBA class? My work in jewelry and luxury retail is a differentiating factor and I apply this experience and perspective to case discussions in the classroom.
Fun fact that didn’t get included on your application? I love trying new things, whether its food, exploring new countries and cultures, or bungee jumping. Life should be lived to its fullest!
Post-MBA career interests: I believe that success comes from a strong education and the ability to apply what you have learned to your workplace. In the future, I am confident that a Schulich MBA will enable me to push boundaries, take risks, and expand my jewelry business to more locations.
Advice to Prospective MBA Applicants
One thing you would absolutely do again as part of your application process? One thing I would do again would be to ask the Schulich admissions team questions regarding requirements and qualifications needed for admission, and all of the benefits of a Schulich MBA.
One thing you would change or do differently? I would have liked to speak with more MBA alumni about their experience in the program.
Part you would have skipped if you could—and what helped you get through it? The video interview during the application process can be stressful. Being recorded under a time constraint can add pressure, but I found it to be a very organic, natural process once I started. What helped me get through it was researching expectations and practicing, but mostly keeping a clear mind. My advice would be to always answer the question you are being asked.
Greatest highlight so far at Schulich/York? The greatest highlight would be the new friends I have made in my classes and at social and networking events. Schulich has a tight-knit, collaborative community of diverse backgrounds and experiences.
One thing about Schulich/York that you didn’t expect before arriving? One thing that surprised me was how invested the professors are in your education and success. They encourage your participation in class discussions as they believe that learning from each other and the various experience the class provides is invaluable to everyone’s learning.
Thing you were most anxious about in your first year? I was most anxious about adjusting to school and balancing a full-time career. However, the adjustment period was quick, and I was able to manage my time accordingly.
Thing you were most excited about in your first year? I was most excited about meeting and networking with new people from different businesses and learning from their experiences.