This is a second interview to an IE graduate who participated in the IE Dual Degree with MIT. Roman Korchagin (Russia) finished his Dual Degree this summer is now back to Russia. Before his International MBA at IE, he worked for 10 years in distribution industry in business development and as Head of Sales. Roman went to study his Dual Degree with MIT in Cambridge.
Roman, why did you decide to do the Dual Degree with MIT?
I think that the Dual Degree gives an excellent mix of a general business education and a deep knowledge in one particular subject. My previous working experience was mostly in sales and I wanted to change my career and gain an expertise in another function. Thus the Dual Degree program was a good choice for me.
Although I didn’t have a direct experience in logistics before, I had a lot of interactions with a logistics department and participated in cross-functional logistics projects.
I was also attracted by the flexibility of the program and the MIT learning environment: in addition to the required courses I could take any courses from MIT Sloan School of Management or Harvard. When I came to MIT I learnt that most of the required courses are also thought to MIT Sloan students. And although the intake was only 33 students, we had an excellent opportunity to interact with MIT Sloan and Harvard Business School students, and PhDs from both MIT and Harvard.
The last reason was a chance to compare European and American cultures and the lifestyles.
How was your day-by-day at the program â?? similar to what you experienced at IE?
MIT and IE programs were similar and different at the same time. I can state that the quality of classes and teaching, especially if we compare the best professors, is equally strong at IE and MIT. I am grateful to IE for a solid base of business knowledge. From the other hand I experienced a great deal of flexibility at MIT. For example, I could try and drop many courses and was much more in charge of my learning path and workload.
I also did my first real research at MIT when I worked on my thesis project. That research was very practical since it was sponsored by a company (General Mills) and I worked in close cooperation with them and visited 3 times the headquarters.
I could also visit much more events, company presentations, and meetings with famous businessmen and politicians (Jack Welch, Steve Ballmer, Carly Fiorina, Edward Kennedy).
I can mention that students at the MIT program don’t represent such a big diversity of countries as at the IE program, but at MIT we also had a lot of PhD students taking the same courses and worked with them on projects, which was a very valuable experience.
How did you finance the additional year at MIT?
I received an International Logistics Fellowship from the MIT Center for Transportation and Logistics and covered the rest of my tuition and living expenses from personal savings.
What has been the main motivation to choose your MIT campus (Cambridge or Zaragoza)?
I decided to go to Cambridge because MIT could provide me with better learning experience: MLOG is a part of a huge university with hundreds of students from different departments and schools.
Thank you very much, Roman, for your enriching contribution to this blog!