Lessons outside of MIT classroom

Perusing the blog posts of my fellow MFins, I feel like everyone has spent a very enjoyable and eventful SIP week. Keshav Goel joined other MFins and Sloanies to meet with Warren Buffett in Omaha (technically a couple of days before the start of the SIP week but it still counts), Peter Touma produced an excellent blog post about the Boston Capital Markets Day, and it was interesting to learn about how Sang-Hyuk Kwon’s international military service experience inspired him to study the Master of Finance program at MIT Sloan. Personally, I devoted my time to picking up some programming skills, catching up with my network, reflecting on my MIT Sloan experience so far, and finally exploring a bit of Boston (which is quite beautiful at this time of the year).

Outside the Church of Christ, Scientist on a sunny autumn evening

Outside the Church of Christ, Scientist on a sunny autumn evening

As a Sloanie, I feel lucky to have so many opportunities emerge that otherwise would not be available to me. The access to top professionals, both from academic and professional community, is a unique privilege to have. Being able to meet distinguished finance professors as well as top company executives (check out photos below) under the roof of your business school highlights yet again MIT’s status as the birthplace of modern finance.

With Robin Chase, founder of Zipcar and Buzzcar

With Anne Myong, CFO at Walmart eCommerce

With Anne Myong, CFO at Walmart eCommerce










I also feel continued support from the CDO who work hard to equip us with all the necessary knowledge, skills and contacts that form foundation for our career search and recruiting success. It was very useful to sit down with Anita Arbogast and discuss my Leadership Development & Coaching Program report, which was personality-tailored and provided me with an insight into my leadership strengths and areas for improvement. It was also great, together with my fellow MFins, to be able to share our summer-internship-related search and networking experiences with Glenn Cunningham who carefully listened to and collected our feedback, giving us confidence that our voices were heard and the CDO office are doing everything they can to facilitate our recruiting efforts.

Finally, it was also interesting to talk to people from across MIT. Having a dinner at MIT dining halls every evening, I try to meet new people from other departments at MIT to learn about their unique backgrounds, experiences and aspirations, which helped me to not only build the sense of the community but also learn more about the American culture, being in the US for the first time in my life.

One observation I would like to share based on my MIT experience so far is one which I find to be consistently confirmed in almost every interaction with fellow MIT students: everyone here is extremely smart and high-achieving yet very humble about their accomplishments. It is great per se but can sometimes lead others to feel like they are “falling behind”. In some cases, that may lead to unhealthy competition, where one is driven to “match” their peers’ academic or professional achievements in order not to “fall out”. However, two things are clear: the only person one should compete with is oneself, and it is more about collaboration than competition. Although healthy competition is essential, it is absolutely normal to be surpassed by other people in some respects. The reason is quite simple: if you were not, it would not be MIT. And going back to the university’s core values, collaboration and positive impact on each other is ultimately what enables meaningful relationships and serves as a basis for success, in academia and professional life ahead.

Toré Amanzholov

Toré Amanzholov is a Master of Finance 2017 Candidate at MIT Sloan School of Management. He is passionate about financial analysis and eager to pursue a career in investment management. In his free time, Toré enjoys playing soccer and table tennis, swimming, as well as cooking and Sudoku solving.

1 Comment

  1. Tore,
    Sounds like you’ve been busy. Did you happen to go to the Mapparium at the
    Christian Science Center? It’s quite memorable.

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