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What is a Cambridge MBA day like?

No day on the Cambridge MBA is exactly the same, and you can expect to be very busy throughout the week, attending core classes, recruitment events and College events.

A typical day in the life of student Songya Kesler

Songya Kesler, Cambridge MBA student
Songya Kesler, MBA student

06:15

I wake up, throw on my rowing gear, grab my things for the day, and head to the boathouse for a 07:15 start. I've already packed my class supplies, change of clothes, and made a breakfast sandwich before bed the previous night so I'm ready to go. 

08:53

I'm looking forward to a Management Praxis class, one of the most dynamic courses on the MBA. Though the boathouse is close by the School, on rowing days, I'm very grateful to have a bicycle.

10:34

My Cambridge Venture Project (CVP) team meets during our coffee break for a quick check-in. Our client has sent us new information, and we want to make sure everyone is on the same page.

12:05

We're in the middle of Management Praxis, and we're playing a game that simulates communication breakdowns. My team is working quickly to succeed before the 12:15 deadline.

12:35

After class, Sean, the other Co-Chair of the Entrepreneurship SIG, grabs me to discuss who will be presenting at our next "War Stories and Pitch" event. We quickly finalise the list, and I agree to post on Facebook while he posts on Slack.

12:50

My friends Kelly, Sameer, and I walk to Darwin College for lunch. Kelly shares some stories about her time working at Disney.

14:01

Facilitated by the Management Praxis professors, two study groups meet to discuss roadblocks and best-practices for our CVP.

15:40

Our study group meets for two hours to review the latest Corporate Finance lectures. Two of our members worked in finance and they gladly help the rest of us grasp new concepts.

17:52

I finally make it home and grab a bite to eat at Jesus College. Then I do some light reading for tomorrow's lectures.

20:36

I head to the Cambridge Brewhouse for some drinks with a few MBAs and friends from Jesus College. We share stories about our backgrounds and talk about our plans for life after Cambridge.

23:23

I am back home, feeling both exhausted and fulfilled from a full day. I get ready for bed and another fresh start tomorrow. Luckily there's no rowing, so I'll be sleeping in.

A typical day in the life of student Agustin Belloso

Agustin Belloso, Cambridge MBA student
Agustin Belloso, MBA student (far left)

06:00

I like to start the day doing some exercise and doing it with friends makes getting out of bed much easier. Luckily, one of my classmates has been kind enough to organise training sessions once a week to start preparing ourselves for MBAT in Paris, the annual MBA sports tournament, which takes take place during May. 

07:30

While the water boils in the kettle for my first cup of coffee, I go through my agenda for the day and read the case study assigned for today's lecture on Strategy. It is about Netflix and looks really interesting.

08:45

After sharing breakfast with my wife, I head to Cambridge Judge on my bike. The School is just a seven minute bike ride away from our accommodation in Wolfson College, and it's now not so cold in the mornings anymore! 

10:30

Time for coffee and a break in between the Strategy lecture. The coffee queue is a good way to have a quick chat with my classmates and discuss options for our Global Consulting Project (GCP) taking place for a month between the Lent and Easter terms.

12:45

The Strategy session was really interesting thanks to the intense debate the Netflix case provoked. I grab a sandwich from the café and join my colleagues from the Cambridge Latin America Network. Today we have invited Marlen de la Chaux, a Phd student at CJBS to share her research on "Entrepreneurship in adverse environments". Latin America has become a vibrant scene for entrepreneurs but its environment is always challenging.

13:54

I grab a coffee and head to Lecture Theatre 3. It's time for the Marketing lecture. Today we are discussing Social Media - my study group will present our case on American Express and its customers' engagement on various platforms.

17:35

I catch up on my emails, and do a little bit of research on GOAL, an Irish NGO that is going to present their GCP opportunity in Uganda, in a few minutes. The project sounds really interesting, I think I'm going to apply for it.

19:30

Tonight we are going to a Formal Hall at St. John's College thanks to my classmate Patrizio who is a member there. He gives us a little tour around the College's grounds before we have dinner in the main dining hall. It really is a traditional College, and so we have to stand up when the Fellows enter and leave the room. Both the food and the whole experience was great! I will have to host a Formal Hall at my college in return sometime during this term.

21:30

Before going to bed, I quickly go through tomorrow's schedule and leave everything ready. It seems it is going to be another intense day on the Cambridge MBA!

A typical day in the life of student Somesh Dwivedi

Somesh Dwivedi, Cambridge MBA student
Somesh Dwivedi, MBA student

06:30

I usually wake up early to do some yoga and read the important news headlines of the day before heading to the School for classes.

08:40

I get to the School, grab a coffee and chat briefly with classmates before the Business Law class starts at 09:00.

10:30

We break for 30 minutes to grab coffee and chat about the upcoming skills development events. I have a very quick meeting with MBA Marketing as I am helping them to host a webinar for incoming students next week.

12:30

It's time for lunch. I either head to a nearby College or grab a sandwich in the Common Room on busier days, where I chat with my classmates about our plans for the summer. I'll be doing an internship at a boutique investment bank in London, focusing on M&A advisory and deal structuring for mid-market technology clients.

14:00

Time for one of my favourite classes on the MBA programme: Mergers & Acquisitions (M&A). The M&A lecturer, Bob Wardrop, is the Executive Director for the Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance. There is a lot to be learnt from his 30-year long experience in banking and investing.

15:30

We break for 15 minutes to get coffee. I also use this time to discuss trends in alternative finance with Bob Wardrop.

18:00

Tonight is one of the four coach nights, where accomplished industry experts come to the School for talks on pertinent issues. I am doing the Finance Concentration and tonight's talk is on Alternative Lending by John Mould, CEO of ESF Capital, and an asset management expert with over 12 years' experience at Morgan Stanley.

19:30

One of the key perks of the Finance Concentration is the dinner with the speaker in a Cambridge College in groups of 10 to 12. Tonight I am headed to Trinity College, arguably the most famous Cambridge College, with 10 of my classmates and John Mould, whose talk I find highly insightful.

21:30

I get back home, catch up on some sports news and read a little before going to bed.

To allow you to tailor the MBA towards your own individual career objectives, we offer a choice in the final Summer Term. These are particular to the individual and students follow very different paths.

Students can study an intensive course, for example Lean Six Sigma, Entrepreneurial Bootcamp, or Private Equity Bootcamp. Alternatively, students can undertake a work placement, or internship. Or they can choose to write a dissertation or research paper in an area of personal interest.

Programme information

Do I need to attend all lectures?

All core and elective lectures and seminars on the Cambridge MBA are compulsory and all students must attend. 

What about careers events?

Careers events such as recruitment presentations and networking events are not compulsory, but we recommend you attend at least a few to make connections and find out what employers have to offer. The Careers Team will work in close partnership with you during the year, and will expect you to work both independently and with your peers, to refine your career development plan, develop networks, practice skills, and ensure you are fully prepared for the opportunities in front of you. 

How many hours am I expected to study outside of core courses?

How much time you spend studying depends on the individual, but as a guide, you will spend much of the time you are not in course lectures or seminars working on project work with your group, as well as a few hours each day on your individual work. 

How will I be assessed throughout the programme?

Depending on the course, you will be assessed in a variety of ways throughout the programme, including formal exams, group assessments, individual written assessments, in-class tests and class participation.

How much time is there for extra-curricular activities?

The Cambridge MBA is an intense, full-time programme and your days will be very full with your courses. However, most students also find a few hours a day to pursue College sporting activities such as rowing, or be part of College societies. Students also benefit greatly from being members of Student Interest Groups and other committees, and they usually find a few hours a week is enough for these, increasing as it gets closer to conferences or events.

 

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