ARINGO continues to interview students from the top MBA programs, and today we bring you an interview with Barak Bitton from the UCLA Anderson MBA program:

What is special about your school? In your eyes, what differentiates your school from others?

    1. Smaller class size (~350 student) – in Anderson, you get to know your entire class on a deeper level and develop personal and strong relationships with your peers.
    2. Varity of industry choices – Although Anderson is known as a tech-focused school, students benefit from the thriving California economy and gain access to all the opportunities business school aim to provide – consulting, I-banking, tech and (almost exclusively) entertainment. The prime location of the school opens a large number of doors for academic internships as well. Companies from the region are recruiting directly from campus and this relationship is something that the school works hard to maintain.
    3. LA – There is truly nothing like the west coast vibe and weather. People are chill, leisure options are endless, and while the rest of the country is worried with blizzards and storms, California is in “chill by the beach” mode with a steady sunny sky.

Any recent changes in your school? or in the admission process?

      • School is opening a new building in early 2020, donated by the Anderson family – Classrooms with the latest technologies for innovative learning, breakout rooms with collaborative learning environments, etc.
      • Admission process is the same 2-step process – part 1 is essays, part 2 is an interview by a 2nd year student.

Can you share some details about the atmosphere in the school? between students, between students and faculty? How do you spend your free time?
Anderson fosters a very entrepreneurial and student-lead environment. This means that everything that happens outside of the classroom is being led by students – from professional clubs and career affairs, to weekly happy-hours and snow-trips – students have the freedom and backing to build any initiative that contribute to the Anderson community. In addition, the faculty of Anderson fully supports its students and provide hands-on support with anything from career advice to school curriculum (i.e., personal academic guidance sessions, connection with specific industries, etc.). Lastly, Anderson’s Parker Career Center provides 24/7 personal advisory to students in their pursuit of their next career challenge – including resume review sessions and mock-interview workshops (and everything in between).

Can you share some details about the area/city?
LA – is there anything else to say?
Before I came to Anderson, a friend told me: “whatever it is you enjoy doing in your free time – you will find the best version of it in LA”, and I have to say she was so right. Whether it’s going to a Lakers game, trekking in Malibu, attending a movie premier, or dining at Michelin star restaurants – LA has everything to offer in terms of enjoying life, and as students you definitely have the free time to appreciate all of the area has to offer.

Can you share some details regarding job opportunities and summer internships for students in your school? How strong is the career office? Did the school name/brand give you any advantage when looking for a job? Are there any specific recruiters who mostly recruit from this school?
For academic and summer internships as well as full-time recruiting, all of the major recruiters arrive to Anderson for company-presentation and general recruiting events (e.g., MBB, the big 4 in tech, and the big banks). In addition, there are PLENTY of job opportunities thanks to the location of the school. Academic internships are very common in Anderson (especially for career switchers), VCs and PEs (which are very common), Series-B start-up companies, and boutique consulting firms. The best thing about these small-medium size companies is that the Parker Career Center has great relationship with these employers, enabling MBAs to experience a variety of positions and industries before honing on their target choice.

What did you like about the school/program? Any classes / clubs you would recommend for future students
Anderson offers amazing elective courses on every topic under the sun. Personally, coming from consulting background – I wanted to expand my technical skills. I really enjoyed Anderson’s data analytics courses – learning different coding languages such as SQL and R enabled me to better understand how to work efficiently with large sets of data in order to extract valuable insights. I strongly believe these courses helped me to leverage my consulting experience and get a full time offer with Amazon.

Any tips for someone who is considering applying to your school?
Anderson is looking for students that are enthusiastic about the school – therefore I would strongly suggest making sure to do specific research prior to ANY interactions with Anderson (this is probably a good tip for any school). The more specific, the better!