Thursday, August 15, 2013

Leveraging Anderson Resources

I’m not the sharpest person in the world or the brightest for that matter. But what I can attest to is that I try hard-- very hard! Even to the point where some people may say that it’s an incessant struggle. But what can I say? I’m committed to excellence. I’m a perfectionist.

A lot of people ask, ‘what is the formula for success’? Well, really there isn’t any. Whether it’s in the workplace or at school, I believe having a commitment to excellence will set you head and shoulders above the competition.  But conveying that message through a string of words is much more difficult than providing a vivid example through a story, so here is mine:

Coming from high school I was shocked when I didn’t get into the Ivy League school of my choice. Sophomore year I was shocked when I didn’t get the summer internship I so desperately wanted. Junior year I learned, yet again, that wanting and working for something are two different things. Disappointment ridden, most people would figure that it’s time to give up, but that is not in my belief system. I absolutely did not give up!

One thing that surprises me about my fellow students is their constant reference to missed opportunities because they ‘come from UNM’. I have close friends who attend Harvard, Yale, Columbia, Berkeley and MIT and according to them, it isn’t all that different. My classmates hold a belief associated with UNM, which I think is completely false and utterly baseless. I truly believe that because I come from UNM more doors have opened for me.  Allow me to provide some demographic background.

My friends at the aforementioned schools are pretty brilliant. They hold 3.5+ GPAs, are involved in extracurricular activities and have great interpersonal skills. With my string of failures, I could have easily said forget it. All my friends will have better jobs than me, better futures, and better lives, better everything! But this seems to me like a trap into which too many fall. I can testify this really isn’t the case. Utilizing the resources of our great university, specifically those offered by Anderson, will quite literally set you head and shoulders above the competition.

As far as I am concerned Anderson Career Services is bar none the best career services office in the country. When I visited other universities prior to enrolling at UNM, I was disheartened at the fact of how inaccessible were the resources at these other institutions. For example, I walk into Anderson Advisement and Career Services probably 2-3 times a week just to say hi to all of the advisors. If I were at another institution, I would have to make an appointment three weeks in advance just to receive any face time.

Also, our Dean, Doug Brown, is probably one of the most amazing human beings ever to have set foot on this planet. He truly cares about his students and his door is open at all times. This semester alone, I dropped by to see him at least a dozen times. It is astounding that students have such open access to such a wonderful person, and resource, like the Dean of the business school. If I were at a different university, I would be lucky to see the Dean twelve times during my entire academic career.  Not only that, but our professors, who are absolutely capable of teaching at any Ivy League university, are committed to educating the students at UNM and dedicated to our future success.

Please remember, don’t do yourself a disservice by perpetuating the UNM ‘stigma’. In my opinion, we have access to the best resources in the country. Start utilizing them! UNM is quality. We need to believe that. UNM isn’t just an institution, it is a sum total of individual pieces all dedicated to excellence - pieces such as you and me. I look at my fellow classmates and they are some pretty brilliant individuals.

I can picture a day when the Big 4, MBB and Wall Street make UNM a recruiting destination. Have an altruistic understanding of yourself, utilize the amazing resources at UNM and make that commitment to excellence. Doors will open for you. They opened for me all the way to Goldman Sachs!


Dowan Kim is an undergraduate student at Anderson School of Management, a former president of Delta Sigma Pi and a current project manager with IBSG. His professional experience includes positions with Toyota, Merrill Lynch, and Goldman Sachs. Connect with Dowan at www.dowankim.com.

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