Class of 2011
Jussi Ailisto completed his MBA from the Bryan School of Business and Economics in 2011. Jussi was part of the day program and came to the Bryan School as part of a partnership program with his home university in Finland. Since completing the program, Jussi has accepted a position as a Junior Consultant/Analyst with a company in his native country of Finland.
How did you discover the UNCG MBA and why did you decide to come to UNCG to pursue your MBA?
I have wanted to study in college/university in US since I was young, so at some level this opportunity was a dream come true for me. I felt that studying in US would really perk up my English and MBA degree would help me to achieve my career goals.
For your professional development, how important were the opportunities to gain practical experience while you were in the program (for example, the internship program & the consulting project)?
From the learning aspect, Capstone consulting project, intensive deadlines, group works, and numerous business cases were superb because of their practicality. As a student you have to really develop your group working skills, real life problem solving and self-management to success in the Bryan MBA program. For me, this was quite challenging at the start of the program because in Finland business studies are more theoretical and emphasize more self-study than working in groups with “real-life” business problems.
Career wise, MBA really opened a lot of doors as I applied for variety of positions after my graduation. It seems that Finnish companies appreciate international experience and the US MBA degree. For instance, I believe that my work related competences such as; working in groups in continually changing environments with a diversity of colleagues leaped during the MBA program.
What did you enjoy most about the UNCG MBA experience? What did you feel were the strengths of the program?
I think that some of the faculty members were brilliant in challenging us to think beyond the textbooks. Faculty members’ passion to teach and continually improve the Bryan MBA program was admirable and most of the faculty members had both academic and professional experience, which led to a good mix of theoretical and practical knowledge.
How were the support services for international students at UNCG? Did you find UNCG to be an internationally friendly campus?
During my studies I had the opportunity to work as an intern in UNCG’s International Programs Center and follow closely how well they take care of each international student, it’s amazing. You feel welcome from the very first moment you set your feet on the NC ground. Before I came to NC I stressed about all the paperwork related to studying in UNCG, but people at the International Programs Center and in the Bryan MBA office took really good care of me.
Looking back on the program & its cost, as an alumnus do you feel that your UNCG MBA was a good investment?
Definitely, from my own experience I can tell that companies in Finland appreciate US MBAs among the job applicants. The Bryan MBA gave me the tools to build a successful career in international business.
What are your hobbies/interests outside of work?
I’m really into sports. UNCG offers a lot of activity for its students. For example, I enjoyed playing soccer for unofficial Bryan MBA team in intramural tournament. We also played indoor soccer, tennis, volleyball and so on. The campus gym is superb and overall sport facilities are excellent.