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In the Know: News Resources for First-Year MBA Students

Business school is a time for professional growth. And while a lot of energy during business school is put towards finding the “dream job/internship,” what makes for long term success in a job often goes beyond the day-to-day MBA bubble of classes, student groups, and recruiting.

An understanding of the world outside of accounting homework and happy hour deals is useful on the job, and will give you something interesting to talk about while you’re at that happy hour.

Having recently finished my first year of business school, I offer a list of news sites and blogs that I think many MBA women will find useful, insightful, or fun as they enter and navigate the first half of their MBA.

Latest Headlines

Keeping up with news is a vital part of the MBA reading diet. It is the bridge between what is taught in the classroom and what we see in the real world. (For me, the moment when I read a story on a leveraged buy-out and actually understood it made me feel pretty pleased with myself.)

Being aware of what’s going on in the world can be useful in job interviews, conferences, or networking chats and sets the stage to critically analyze a particular industry, economy, or business issue. Some of my favorite news sources are:

The Wall Street Journal

The Wall Street Journal is standard reading at most business schools, and for good reason. Beyond the headlines it provides news specific to different industries and offers editorial pieces from business leaders, political figures and Pulitzer-prize winning journalists.

The Economist

For students at US business schools, The Economist is a good resource for news abroad. Articles tend to be more in depth than those in standard newspapers – for example, the magazine did a feature on Masayoshi Son, founder of Softbank, that gives an interesting view into venture capital and the future of the technology sector. (A side benefit: it’s sold at most airports.)

RealClear Markets

RealClear Markets is a curated news aggregator part of the RealClear Media Group, which includes RealClear Politics and RealClear Science. RealClear Markets aggregates interesting stories from around the web on a range of business topics from stock volatility to cryptocurrencies to pro-athlete salaries.

Career Exploration

When I first entered business school, I found myself in a chaotic jungle of professional opportunities and potential career trajectories. I found the following sites helpful to understand some common MBA career paths – these sites are a basic guide to the MBA career jungle. (Of course there are many blogs out there that cover these career paths, these are just some of my favorites.)

Financial Services: Wall Street Prep blog

At some point I got tired of listening blankly to my friends in finance chat about FP&A, equity research and due diligence (as opposed to don’t diligence?). This blog is run by Wall Street Prep, a company that offers on-line courses and other services to help students pursue careers in finance. The blog is straightforward and designed for newbies to the industry.

Consulting: CaseInterview.com

This site is run by management consulting “guru” Victor Cheng. He’s written a ton of material on consulting cases and how consulting firms operate. He also writes generally about career growth and the consulting mindset.

Marketing: MarketingProfs.com

Since we’ve all been subject to “marketing,” I thought I knew the field pretty well coming in business school. It turns out marketing is much broader than I initially imagined and it comes with its own lingo and buzzwords. This site gives a good view into marketing challenges and offers tutorials and events for those who want to go a little deeper.

Entrepreneurship: StartupManagement.org

This was tough to choose because the entrepreneurial space is so large and flexible. I like this blog because it looks at issues from the perspective of a business owner, it gathers ideas from around the web, and it’s organized by the different categories of issues entrepreneurs face.

Just for the Ladies

These sites touch on topics specific to women in business. Workplace issues, inspiration, where to find a great pair of shoes…

#Feminism: Lean-in.org

Built out of Sheryl Sandberg’s famous book, Lean In seeks to empower women through educational tools, awareness campaigns and research on women in the workplace. It also sponsors Lean In Circles to facilitate mentorship and professional development.

Inspiration: Hot Mammas Project

The rebellious younger cousin to Lean In, the Hot Mamma’s Project is a digital case study library of female role models designed to help women build confidence in their careers. The site also includes blog posts around career development, mentorship, and work-life balance.

Work Wear: Corporette

Okay. Full disclosure: I love clothes. This clothing blog is a favorite because it includes a thorough round-up of clothing recommendations for the office and other professional situations. It covers reliable basics, a guide to business casual, plus size options, and more.

Last but not least: Forté Business 360° Blog

The Business 360° blog, and the Forté website, is an incredible resource for learning about business school and building a network of women in business!

Eve Surcobe is an MBA student at the Tepper School of Business at Carnegie Mellon University. She is a Forté Fellow and is pursuing concentrations in Strategy, Economics and Information Systems.

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