Best Advice For Business Majors…From Business Graduates

Brianna Jordan, University of Illinois (Gies)

4) Study Abroad: “Not only is it an incredibly eye-opening experience that helps you gain independence in a completely unique way, but it also gives you a worldview of business that cannot be gained in the classroom. I had the opportunity to study for a semester in Barcelona, and I can say it is one of my favorite parts of obtaining my undergraduate degree. The exposure to students from around the world helped me see how business concepts can be integrated into different cultures and how each country has molded their own way of doing business. I think an experience abroad will only make you a more well-rounded business student and will help dramatically in your coursework once you complete your program.”
Brianna Jordan, University of Illinois (Gies)

5) Don’t Be Afraid To Experiment: “Explore a lot of different fields first to see what you really enjoy doing. If you can’t make up your mind, then business is the perfect major for you. The field draws on lessons from just about every other field, making it always interesting. It also opens doors to work in just about any industry afterward and helps you develop critical analysis and frameworks with near universal applications. Take advantage of the unique multitude of opportunities that a business major offers to simultaneously explore both fascinating topics and possibilities for future careers.”
Samuel R. Lisner, University of Virginia (McIntire)

6) Listen More Than You Speak: “For starters, there is a wealth of information available in everyone you meet. Whether it be a banking associate telling you about their dream to roll-up industrial service companies or your friend from high school describing his study abroad, there is constantly an opportunity to take in information that could benefit you somehow in some way. Additionally, everyone on some level has a desire to be heard. Giving everyone you meet, no matter their stature or intention, a platform to speak is extremely empowering and a gesture that costs you very little. In an industry where relationships are paramount and your network is your net worth, I would say it’s a wise investment to empower all you come in contact with.”
Jake DiBenedetto, Georgia Tech (Scheller)

Dimitri Pun, New York University (Stern)

7) Learn From Others: “I would advise future business students to engage with their community and learn from those around them. The greatest value that I got from attending Stern wasn’t necessarily the coursework (although that certainly was an amazing aspect), but the community of intelligent, diverse, and ambitious students, teachers, alumni, and administrators who were always there to share their experience and wisdom. Every day, I learned something new from those around me, whether it was tips and tricks they learned, opportunities they came across, classes that helped them find their path, or just general life advice. Business is honestly all about people, and the people around you in school will add such richness to your education!”
Dimitri Pun, New York University (Stern)

8) Fail Fast And Fail Often: “People often treat failure as a bad thing and that’s not necessarily always true. Whenever you fail, think of it as a point where you are actually pushing above your capability. Fail fast and fail often, but every time you do seek feedback and try to become 1% better. Compounding is an extraordinary thing.”
Karan Kishorepuria, Northeastern University (D’Amore-McKim)

9) Pair Business With A Different Major: “This answer may seem counterintuitive given that this question pertains to business, but my advice would be to pair a major in business with a major/minor in another topic (mine was Anthropology). This harkens back to what I believe about everything being connected; taking a class outside of business will give you a wider perspective and will also supplement your business-related field. That’s because you are able to leverage an expanded knowledge base and see more connections. If you can’t pick up another major/minor, then I would suggest gaining this perspective through various webinars or events outside of your field of study. I remember going from my Finance to Anthropology classes throughout the school day and what a blessing it was to exercise different areas of my brain. Truly a breath of fresh air!”
Rachel Perry, University of Richmond (Robins)

Rohan Parikh, Villanova University

10) Ask The Hard Questions: “I would advise prospective business students to ask questions and begin viewing the world through a business lens. The shirt you’re wearing – where did it come from?  Who made it?  From what raw materials?  Do you think it was profitable?  What made you buy that shirt in particular?  Questions like these can be fascinating and help to sharpen business acumen.  Run through a similar exercise and see what you think. If you find it thought-provoking, exciting, or insightful, you will thoroughly enjoy a business education.”
Kurt Vogl, Rutgers University

“There are so many different sub-fields within business – and even finance. For me, it was helpful to be able to explore and learn about all of them before deciding what interested me the most. Asking a lot of questions and talking to as many faculty and upperclassmen as possible helped me to figure out what I am interested in. In addition, throughout sophomore year, I would spend a few hours every week just reading articles given that the Villanova School of Business provided us with access to so many news platforms. Just reading helped me to gain an understanding of what was going on in the world and in markets. This eventually led me to formulate opinions and ask better questions to learn more. My advice would be to ask a lot of questions and read articles even for just a few minutes a day because we don’t know what we don’t know. That’s why it is imperative we ask questions to understand what we don’t know so we can dive in and learn.”
Rohan Parikh, Villanova Business School





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