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Discuss your post-MBA short-term and long-term goals – Sample Essay UNEDITED

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Please discuss your post-MBA short-term and long-term goals. How will your professional experiences, when combined with an MBA degree, allow you to achieve these goals?

I was seven when I first visited my mother’s native Taiwan, and the trip was daunting. The sea of people crowding the sidewalks, the cuisine, and the local fashion seemed distant and foreign to me. However, as a teenager I realized that my heritage and love of the region still bound me to the people of Taiwan. Moreover, my work experiences have led me to recognize the numerable opportunities arising from the region’s favorable investment environment. Over time, my travels abroad—and particularly my visits to Taiwan—have helped to shape my goals and aspirations.

At this point in my career, I seek an MBA from The University of Southern California’s Marshall School of business because I believe it will broaden my knowledge of finance, allowing me to explore the new opportunities of the Pacific Rim. More specifically, an MBA from Marshall will help me to achieve my short-term goal of obtaining a corporate finance position in an emerging technology company with interests in Asia. The program will provide a theoretical foundation to complement my previous experiences in financial consulting, derivative risk management, and corporate finance, which will in turn help me fulfill my long-term goal of starting a business venture in the Pacific Rim.

My professional experiences so far have been diverse yet relevant to my ambitions. After graduating from college, I joined the Business Assurance Division of Coopers and Lybrand, where I became responsible for the firm’s highest profile clients and managed projects early in my career. After my first eighteen months there, I was invited to join a select group of ten consultants in the Dispute Analysis and Investigation Group of the Financial Advisory Services line. In this position, I provided advice to clients dealing with complex business problems and disputes. I enjoyed the challenge of adapting to different environments and the opportunity to work with a diverse, intelligent group of people. However, this job was devoid of my true interest: the financial markets.

In the summer of 1997, I accepted a position at Morgan Stanley that would allow me to pursue a career in finance and relocated to New York. Once again, I progressed rapidly. After just a year at the company, I was entrusted with managing the Credit Derivative Trading Finance Group. The products involved in this division are the fastest-growing investment and risk management mechanisms currently used by institutions and traders. Consequently, I was able to work with numerous complex valuations, as well legal, regulatory, and reporting issues. For example, I helped to develop a credit spread option and total return swap pricing model that is currently used by trading personnel. Through my work at Morgan Stanley, I have confirmed my desire to pursue a career in finance; at the same time, my aspirations have broadened considerably. Instead of managing the growth of a business, I now wish to grow my own business.

My short-term goal is to work in a corporate finance position at an emerging technology company in an international setting. I am specifically interested in the technology sector, because—as in the derivative market—change there occurs rapidly. I believe the Pacific Rim, in particular, has the largest market of unmet technological needs. However, it is apparent to me that I must develop additional skills to take on such a responsibility. Whereas I have already accumulated strong financial experiences, I need an additional theoretical base and the opportunity to learn from others in order to make effective decisions across an entire organization, from finance to marketing to sales.

An MBA from Marshall will provide the additional knowledge base and network to pursue a career in corporate finance. By leveraging my academic and professional experiences, I know I will make the critical financial decisions that will enable a technology company to successfully complete in a global marketplace. At the same time, I will be able to develop the networks crucial to launching a Pacific Rim entrepreneurial venture.

I am confident that I can best achieve my goals through the education provided at Marshall. My desire to attend the school has been strengthened by the experience of my brother Raymond, who is currently in his second year at Marshall. I frequently visit him in Los Angeles, which has given me a chance to tour the campus on several occasions. Through these visits, I have realized that Marshall’s strength in general management and entrepreneurial studies, combined with its focus on the Pacific Rim, exactly mirror my aspirations. These strengths are evident not only in the curriculum, but also in the Prime Program, through which I plan to return to Asia.

Moreover, I am aware that textbooks are not the most critical component of an MBA program; contact with real businesspeople is just as vital. Marshall’s large population of international students and strong alumni base are especially conducive to forming lasting friendships and developing global business ventures. Finally, the school’s proximity to Los Angeles and San Francisco will give me access to one of the largest concentrations of technology companies in the world while allowing me to be closer to my family and friends.

I know that when I return to Asia, my reaction will be very different from when I was a seven-year-old on my first trip to Taiwan. Instead of feeling confused by a radically different environment, I will leverage the education I receive at Marshall to conduct business with the insight of a native resident.

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