A group of MBA students chatting

The MBA Journey: A Finance Perspective

Alex Bibb, MBA '17, began his journey long before coming to the University of Oregon.

Bibb started his career working in financial development in both New York and Arizona, where he helped provide low-income families with financial services. He also spent time working with non-profit organizations, researching how working-class families manage their finances.

After gaining a few years of work experience, Bibb knew his next move needed to be an MBA in order to further his career and transition into a more traditional finance role. He began looking for a school where he could develop his strategic thinking skills—and it needed to have an excellent finance program.

The University of Oregon was the school that fit the bill. After discussions with Michele Henney, program director for the Cameron Center for Finance and Securities Analysis at the university's Lundquist College of Business, Bibb felt the Oregon MBA had an excellent synergy of financial expertise, financial stewardship, and momentum toward building the greater good.

Bibb immersed himself in a variety of activities during his first year in the Oregon MBA program. He participated in case competitions for the Department of Housing and Urban Development, worked on a capstone project studying the feasibility of affordable housing in Portland, became a member of the Oregon Black Male Alliance, and held an internship at Intel. His second year was no different. He participated in investment challenges, managed the Cameron Center's Emerging Markets Fund, and held a position as a graduate employee.

During his time in the MBA program, Bibb networked with numerous alumni at major commercial banks. After graduating, he accepted a position as a financial analyst at Wells Fargo. He now works in the firm's middle market banking department and assists in the management of business clients with $15 million to $500 million in annual revenue.

Having recently experienced the MBA journey, Bibb has some words of wisdom for those entering the program. Firstly, he urges students to consider the value of accounting and finance classes. No matter what career path they take, they'll find the skills they learn in those classes useful. He also recommends that prospective MBA students think long and hard about their own story: where they are coming from, where they want to go, and how an MBA program can help them get to the next point. They should then evaluate each school they're considering and assess whether the school will help them achieve their goals.

Lastly—while high rankings and reputation are admirable qualities to look for in a potential university—Bibb advises that prospective students ultimately choose the school that best meshes with their personality and values.

“Your name will forever be attached to the university you choose," he said. “Make sure it's one that reflects who you are."