W. P. Carey School of Business

Connections with others leads to enhanced experience for Full-time MBA student

W. P. Carey alumna Shale Brenner had a great undergraduate experience, but she’s found her time in the Full-time MBA program to be particularly rewarding, especially when it comes to her classmates.

Kasey McNerney
Headshot of W. P. Carey MBA student Shale Brenner

W. P. Carey alumna Shale Brenner (BS Supply Chain Management/BA Business Spanish Language and Culture ’19) had a great undergraduate experience, but she’s found her time in the Full-time MBA program to be particularly rewarding, especially when it comes to her classmates.

“I’ve made a lot of really good friends and met people who I’m excited to tell when something happens in my life,” she says. “People who are legitimate friends. I’m not just seeing them when I’m at school, but we’ll make plans outside of class.”

We spoke with Brenner about her connections with W. P. Carey and the people who are a part of it, and what’s next for her in her Full-time MBA journey.

Question: What led you to decide to pursue an MBA, and what brought you to the W. P. Carey School of Business?

Answer: I am an alumna of ASU from my undergraduate degrees. I studied supply chain management, as well as business language and culture with a focus on Spanish, and graduated in 2019. I was looking at potentially coming back for a master’s to further my education. I loved being at ASU, so I never really considered any other schools. I’m originally from Illinois, but I live in Arizona now, and I didn’t want to have to relocate.

I got an email from ASU one day in January 2022 that said the school would waive my application fee for the Full-time MBA program, and it offered a scholarship if I applied. I went through the application process, and I received an offer I couldn’t refuse, so I decided to go back to school. It worked out nicely. I was working in procurement in the housing industry, which I wasn’t loving. I was glad to have the opportunity to further my education and potentially shift industries a bit.

Q: What has been your experience so far with the Executive Connections mentoring program?

A: I’ve really enjoyed meeting the different mentors as part of the Executive Connections program. We had a “Breakfast with a Mentor” day, and we got to meet mentors who aren’t our own. I got to meet three or four different mentors and do some networking, and it was a really fun day.

It’s been great. My mentor works with another student and myself, and he has a great memory. If I tell him something is bothering me, or we’re working on something, he’ll remember it. If I don’t talk to him for a bit, and then we meet a month or two later, he’ll check in. “Did you work on that issue? Have you made progress?” He’s very good about that.

It’s one of the unique things about the W. P. Carey MBA, something not a lot of other programs have.

Q: What does being part of the W. P. Carey community mean to you?

A: It means embracing everything the program is offering to you. You’re taking to heart the charter. We have this award you can win called Net Investor, and it means you’re going above and beyond in the program and exceeding what is asked of you as a student. I think that the school wants you to find a place where you can deliver the best of yourself.

They really do try to make Business is Personal true. The school wants you to be involved. The majority of the staff work on the third floor of McCord Hall, and us MBA students practically live in McCord Hall. You walk past people and it’s such a friendly environment. It’s almost like a second home, honestly, because you spend so much time there and get to know everyone.

Q: What advice would you give to a future student who is considering getting an MBA?

A: ake advantage of the resources the program offers. A lot of students go to school and just go to class. Maybe not doing the bare minimum, but they don’t embrace all of the other things that are going on at the school. There are conferences you can attend, clubs can join and take on leadership positions in. There are so many connections to be made. It really enhances your experience and helps you get your money’s worth.

Q: What are you most looking forward to in the future?

A: I am relocating to Huntsville, Alabama this summer [2023] for an internship. I’m excited about that and being able to put some of what I’ve learned over this last year into action. I’m going to be an operations and manufacturing intern, working on the floor where the products are made as opposed to being in the office. If I enjoy my operations and manufacturing internship, I’ll look into going into that for full-time work after graduation. If not, I’m likely going to go into consulting.

I’m also attending the Future Business Leaders of America National Leadership Conference this summer. My friend and I joined and will be competing in a couple of different areas, which will be really fun.

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