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MBA - About the MBA

Applying to MBA Programs in Europe

“On voyage pour changer, non de lieu, mais d’idées.” -Hippolyte Taine

I have always wanted to live in a foreign country. This attraction to living abroad is rooted in my belief that stepping out of my comfort zone will lead to self-discovery.

My MBA search started while traveling two summers ago. I was in Paris and decided I finally had to move abroad. Back in San Francisco, I realized that moving with school, rather than work, could be a great option. An MBA had been on my radar for a couple of years, but given the costs and competitiveness of US programs, it never seemed like the right time. Now that I was newly motivated to live abroad, I started looking into international MBA programs.

European MBA programs impressed me with their diversity, rankings, and costs. The two schools I applied to, HEC Paris and London Business School, both have >90% international students, are top-ranked programs, and cost less than the average US school.

As my research continued, I realized that I wouldn’t just get a chance to live abroad while studying, but that I would gain exposure to entirely different ways of working and living (hello 35-hour work week and paid vacation!). After 7 years working in New York City and Silicon Valley, I was in need of a different perspective. A school outside of the US would be the right choice for me.

Since joining the HEC Paris MBA, I have taken on roles that I likely would not have pursued in the comfort of the USA. In my community and at work, I had grown to expect that someone else would step up to lead. I never thought it could be me.

At HEC Paris, I find myself in the most diverse community I have been a part of, and I have had to step out of my comfort zone. It is here that I feel I can, and should, make an impact. The MBA encourages participants to do so.

As a club president, an official student liaison to the administration, or an unofficial potluck organizer, everyone at HEC Paris can lead in a way that feels authentic to them.

I want to help diversity at HEC Paris thrive. I am now President of the Women in Leadership Club and VP of the LGBTQ Club, two clubs that celebrate diversity in leadership. I also love planning parties, so I ran for Director of Events for the MBAT (the international MBA sports tournament we host each spring).

Looking back, I see that what I thought were separate motivations, living abroad and doing the MBA, were one and the same.

Amanda Moritz is a former product marketing manager at Google, currently pursuing her MBA at HEC Paris, class of 2020. She has eight years of marketing experience in e-commerce, financial services, and education technology, and holds a BS in Brain & Cognitive Sciences from MIT.

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