After 15 months of hard work, the MIM class of 2012 earned their degrees on December 7th, with friends, families, and teachers all there to help them celebrate. The MIM program follows a rigorous schedule, combining traditional MBA business coursework, Japanese and Chinese language courses, a real-world business project, and a 3-week trip to some of the most dynamic cities in Asia.
When asked to comment on what their favorite part of the MIM program was, a majority of students mentioned traveling on the Asia trip in the spring. “The Asia trip is what everyone references as their favorite part of the MIM program, and I’d have a hard time disagreeing”, says Ryan Reichert. “I particularly enjoyed our extended week in Vietnam and Thailand, and I won’t even get started on the food…” A large part of the Asia
trip includes visiting companies and factories in Asia, giving students a unique insider’s view of multinational business operations. For Michael Everson, the Asia trip provided a chance to get to know people in each country the MIM program visited in 2012, and make some lasting connections. “I’d like to think that after things are all said and done, there will be people in Thailand, Taiwan, Japan, and China who like me enough to show me around should I come to visit”, says Everson.
Other graduating students also had pieces of advice for current and future MIM students. Regarding networking, Reichert says “talk to anyone and everyone without ego, because you never know where an opportunity will manifest. Don’t just stick to what’s easy, take some risks and make an effort to learn something new. And try to practice key skills, whether it’s public speaking, interviewing, answering behavioral questions, or simply working on a personal challenge. This will pay off later when you’re in front of a potential employer.”
In terms of searching for jobs, Everson adds that students shouldn’t be afraid to apply for jobs, even if they don’t think they have enough prior work experience. “Even if you have an interview that doesn’t go well, it’s good practice for ones that may follow.” Everson himself will be starting a new job at Oracle, which he says he found through a guest speaker in a MIM class who ended up taking resumes from interested students. Goy, a graduating MIM Ambassador, also agrees that searching for jobs early and often is a good way to be better prepared for other interviews down the road. She herself will stay in the U.S. and continue searching for jobs here.
Pear, another graduating MIM Ambassador from Thailand sums up her advice this way: “The MIM program is a busy program, but keep fighting! Do not give up! You not only gain knowledge that is broad, and useful, but you also get to be part of the MIM family, which is very memorable. Time flies, so enjoy every minute!
Congratulations MIM class of 2012, and good luck as you pursue your next steps!
Josh is a full-time student in the Master of International Management program. After graduating from the University of Oregon with a degree in Japanese, he taught English in Tokyo for 3 years, before moving to China and teaching at a university in the city of Zhengzhou. Inspired by his experiences in Japan and China, he was drawn to the MIM program because of its regional focus on Asia, as well as for Portland State University’s reputation as a leader in the field of sustainable business. He is studying Chinese in the MIM program, but tries to keep up his Japanese whenever he can.