Congratulations, you’re getting your MBA! Hopefully you’re excited about furthering your education and the career doors doing so will open up for you. Earning an MBA takes a lot of hard work and for some, financial sacrifice. That’s why it is important to get the most out of your time as an MBA student. Here are some tips to help you do just that.

Network network network! Be warm and professional to everyone you meet-instructors, guest speakers, and fellow students. Make the best impression possible because someday they may be your clients, colleagues, bosses-or have the pull to get you into the job of your dreams. Never underestimate the power of networking! Treat your fellow classmates like colleagues, because chances are they will be someday. The world of business is huge yet small-word tends to get around, especially in these days of social media. Be someone they’ll be glad to see again someday.

In that same vein, go for the best internships you can. Internships not only give you valuable experience, but they can foster connections and friendships that could last a lifetime. You could wind up with a lucrative job offer at graduation or incredible connections that will open doors for you now or in the future.

Be sure to choose the best MBA program you can. Be picky! That way you’ll be sure to find a top notch program like the one offered by mba.csumb.edu. The most important thing to do is to make sure the program is accredited. A degree from a non-accredited school is literally worthless.

Another important thing to do is to set goals for yourself. These should be goals that challenge you. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking you have to compete with your classmates. That would be putting unneeded pressure on yourself. Simply strive to be the best you can be. Work with your classmates to learn the value of teamwork.

Business plans are a big part of creating a successful business. To keep your skills sharp, always be open to listening to business ideas, whether they come from casual conversations at parties, magazine articles or online. This will help broaden and sharpen your business mindset.

Finally, once you graduate, stay connected through alumni programs and events. These will provide important opportunities to network and possibly even create new business opportunities, so don’t pass them up!

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