International MBA student sees growth and connection beyond the classroom
International student Lionel Lau joined the Full-time MBA program at the W. P. Carey School of Business looking to develop a wide breadth of skills and take the next step in his career. Lau has already seen professional growth and built lasting relationships as part of the Class of 2024 and attributes this to ASU’s unique program.
International student Lionel Lau joined the Full-time MBA program at the W. P. Carey School of Business looking to develop a wide breadth of skills and take the next step in his career. Building on his background in business development in Malaysia, Lau has already seen professional growth and built lasting relationships as part of the Class of 2024 and attributes this to ASU’s unique program.
“There are two main reasons that the MBA program at ASU stood out to me, and they were the main reasons why I decided to pursue the program,” he says. “As a person that believes in data-driven and evidenced-based decision-making, the curriculum that integrates data analytics in the core was one of the reasons. The ability to develop my business skillsets through a comprehensive curriculum that covers a wide range of business disciplines was something that I knew I needed to bring my career a step forward.”
“The size of the classroom at ASU was also attractive to me,” Lau adds. “With a smaller classroom size, it becomes easier to establish strong relationships with your classmates and build a tight-knit community, where students are able to foster a sense of camaraderie, support, and teamwork that will last in the long-term.”
W. P. Carey talked to Lau about his first year in the Full-time MBA program and what stands out about his experience so far.
Question: What about your education and experience has been meaningful so far? Have you learned anything that surprised you or changed your perspective?
Answer: One aspect of the MBA program that I find meaningful so far is the opportunity to apply the knowledge and skills learned practically through case studies and simulations. By doing so, it provides valuable insights and enhances the relevance of the concepts learned in the classroom.
One thing that I learned that changed my perspective was the emphasis placed on collaboration and teamwork to simulate real-world business environments. Working in diverse teams can be challenging, as it requires effective communication, conflict resolution, and the ability to leverage individual strengths for collective success. However, the results of it are rewarding.
Q: What does being a part of the W. P. Carey community mean to you? Are there any relationships or resources that have made a difference for you?
A: Being part of the W. P. Carey community means that I have the support from classmates, faculty, and mentors. Having that support means that you are able to be your authentic self and have a support system to guide you through the program. To me, my classmates and my executive mentor have been instrumental in shaping my journey so far, and I am excited to continue to build those relationships into my second year.
Q: Can you delve into a bit more about Executive Connections? How important is the mentor relationship?
A: For Executive Connections, the relationship between a student and the mentor is a two-way street. Being willing to continuously build the organic relationship with your mentor can go a long way, and I have gained a lot from being able to learn from my mentor’s guidance and wealth of experience.
Q: As someone who is highly involved, what do students gain from their involvement in clubs and organizations?
A: I would say that, how much you gain from being a part of clubs and organizations is highly dependent on your initiative and level of involvement. For me, being a part of MBAA and Carey Consulting has given me the opportunity to apply the knowledge and skillsets I have learned in the classroom, and the results were highly rewarding.
Q: What advice would you give to a future student who is thinking about getting their MBA?
A: Go into the MBA with a goal in mind, be willing to take up challenges, and be willing to learn from your cohort, faculty, and mentors.
Q: How would you describe Arizona to someone who has not been here before?
A: It’s not just desert. If you are into nature and hiking, Arizona is the place to be.
Q: What are you looking forward to next in your program? What about after you graduate?
A: One thing I am looking forward in the program is to really apply the skills and knowledge acquired over the first year and the summer to the classes in the second year. I am also looking forward to being able to utilize what I have learned throughout my program and contribute to the company that I will be working for after I graduate — making W. P. Carey proud.
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