In September, 125 students from around the globe arrived at Paccar Hall, eager to jump right into their Foster MBA experience. Kicking off the program in the most Seattle-way possible, the new Foster MBAs were treated to a sunset dinner cruise around Lake Washington and Lake Union. Overlooking views of the Space Needle and Mt. Rainier, the homes of Seattle-business pioneers such as Gates, Bezos and Shultz provided an appropriate backdrop for this cohort of future business leaders.
After their Welcome Cruise, the ‘18ers got straight to work. PRIME orientation allowed students to meet with academic advisors, network at club-sponsored happy hours, attend various student panels, and connect with faculty. Following this, JUMPSTART gave students a chance to brush up on the basics of accounting, finance, math, and statistics in all-day workshops with Foster faculty. Then the students began the first part of Foster’s Leadership Development course (LEAD), a three-day intensive course focused on developing individual leadership potential. On September 26, the rest of the university returned to classes, and the students began the quarter in earnest with the first set of the Foster required curriculum courses: Finance, Microeconomics, Accounting, and Marketing.
By the end of the Autumn quarter in December, the class had earned their stripes. Between club activities, case competitions, firm happy hours, career prep, networking, and of course, studying, members of the Class of 2018 had rolled up their sleeves, jumped right in, and made their Foster experience an active, dynamic one.
Here’s some fast facts about the 2018ers:
- Entering class size: 125
- Average age: 29
- Average work experience: 5.97 years
- Women: 43%
- International citizenship: 39%
- GMAT average: 691
- GMAT middle 80%: 636-730
- Average GPA: 3.38
We asked around, and here’s what a few members of the Class of 2018 had to say about why they chose Foster:
“Foster’s potential was what attracted me as it has great exposure to well-known companies locally, nationally and globally. Also, the program was well structured to provide guidance for the MBA students looking to switch careers.”
– Min Kim, Las Vegas, Nevada
“I love that Foster is at the heart of innovation in a city that is radically transforming the economic landscape of business. The small size of the program is an amazing opportunity to be a significant part of Foster’s impact on the business world. I’m extremely excited to be a part of that.”
– Dan Gardner, Washington D.C.
“The program delivers everything that I wanted out of an MBA: an emphasis on experiential learning and leadership development; a strategic location in Seattle backed by strong alumni network in this area; a collaborative culture with a small class that allows for focused attention from career management and opportunities to work with other classmates. Also, when I visited the school last year, every student I talked to felt really passionate and happy about being here, and I wanted to be part of that group.”
– Bhagath Ganga, Hyderabad, India
“My major attraction to Foster was the right balance of academic rigor and hands-on opportunities for leadership development. The rigorous core curriculum coupled with the customizable 2nd year curriculum, provided me an opportunity to hone my technical skills and the option of exploring more than one area of Business for my MBA concentration.
Also, the strong career management team which provides extensive support to candidates through a career coaching and mentoring program, gave me the confidence that my potential in business school would be translated to a thriving career post-MBA. These in addition to opportunities to learn by doing through the consulting programs, Board Fellowships and other experiential learning programs, provided me the perfect mix I need to realize my short and long term career goals.”
– Oluyinka Awobiyi, Lagos, Nigeria
“I had, of course, a small list of non-negotiables: strong marketing pipeline, focus on collaboration, west coast, flexible academic program. While I was only considering schools that met those criteria, what sold me on Foster was (1) experiencing the warm culture of the students, staff, and Alumni, (2) understanding the benefits of being in a small, more personable program, and (3) Fosters willingness to take a strong stand about the kind of business leaders they recruit and develop (collaborative, internationally-minded, and genuine).”
– Laurel Laidlaw, Newport Beach, California