Life is Unpredictable, But The Michigan Ross OMBA Program Gave Me The Flexibility I Needed For Both Me And My Family

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By: John Hartigan, OMBA '22

When I received my acceptance call from Michigan Ross, I had a couple of balls up in the air. In addition to my admission into the program, I had also been offered a job that would require my partner and I to move from downtown Boston to Northwest Arkansas. What kind of part-time MBA program should I attend, considering the fact that I may or may not accept the employment opportunity? 

My partner, Jill, and I spent the summer juggling these difficult questions: Should I accept the job in Arkansas? Should I move down alone and struggle with a long-distance relationship, while being enrolled in an MBA program that would require me to fly every weekend? Should we move down as a couple and delay my graduate school program so we can experience a new place together? 

Luckily, the Michigan Ross Online MBA  provided us with some easy answers; the program allowed me to move to a new part of the country and enroll in a top MBA program, and Jill did not have to face a new home without the support of family and friends! I am so glad that I chose the OMBA program at Ross for the following reasons: 

The Ross OMBA program offers an unmatched level of flexibility, without sacrificing academic excellence. 

I love that the program does not require me to travel every weekend, unlike other, similar programs. It was important for me and Jill to be able to make friends and experience a new part of the country together, without me having to get on a plane every Saturday.  The Ross OMBA program not only allows me to work through many of its modules from home or the office, but also according to my own schedule, whether that be during lunch at the office, after work, or even when stranded at the airport. I love the flexibility of being able to get ahead in class when I have a slower work week and then focus more on my job when things get busy. 

I still feel as if I am part of a community and get to take advantage of all the benefits offered to full-time Ross students.

I was hesitant to enroll in a traditional online program that would make it hard to feel a real connection to the school or classmates; however, the OMBA program at Ross felt different. Unlike a traditional Online-only MBA, the Ross OMBA does things a little differently; we have frequent “live” classes and even travel to Ann Arbor as a cohort. The live class setting gives me and my cohort a chance to interact with each other face-to-face as we collaborate on projects. I am excited to make my first trek with my classmates to Ann Arbor for our first in-person session this winter. This trip will allow us to take advantage of all that the Ann Arbor campus has to offer while getting to know each other face-to-face. 

Finally, the Ross community has done a fantastic job of making its online students feel like full members of the team. 

Just last week, a couple of us had a call with some organizational leaders to brainstorm ideas as to how OMBA participants can be active members of on-campus clubs! 

I am so excited to be a part of the Ross community and thankful that there is a program for someone who wants a top-tier education with unmatched levels of flexibility. 

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John Hartigan, OMBA '22