Student Spotlight: Ashley Pitcock
Through KU’s MBA and undergraduate engineering bridge program, Ashley Pitcock is earning her bachelor’s and MBA in just nine semesters.
Ashley Pitcock took the first steps toward her MBA as a freshman at KU studying mechanical engineering.
“I went to an all-girls high school focused on STEM, so an engineering degree seemed like the natural major to pursue in college,” she explained. “However, I always knew that I wanted to pursue my MBA because I eventually wanted to transition to a business role within an engineering company.”
Through KU’s MBA and undergraduate engineering bridge program, Pitcock learned she could take engineering and MBA courses concurrently during her fourth year and complete MBA coursework during her fifth year. She will complete her MBA in December 2020.
“Immediately, I knew that this was a program that I wanted to be a part of,” Pitcock said. “Being one of the first students to complete this program has been a unique experience for me and one of the best parts of my college career.”
What has been one of your favorite moments in the MBA program so far?
My favorite moment in the MBA program has been the ability to gain career knowledge and insight from my classmates. I have never had a full-time job, and it has been interesting to learn about the various careers they have had. It has also taught me that this network of people is going to be there for me throughout my professional career. I am looking forward to staying in touch with everyone after graduation and seeing where our careers take us.
What has been the biggest challenge?
The biggest challenge was adjusting between business classes and engineering classes last semester. I was still completing my last three engineering classes and going back and forth between Cap Fed and LEEP2. It was hard for me to really get to know my MBA cohort because I did not spend time outside of class in the business school and only had some classes with them. However, I was still able to build meaningful relationships by the end of the semester and have strengthened them throughout the spring semester.
What are your plans for the future? How do you think the MBA program will impact your career moving forward?
I plan to work for the Walt Disney Company one day as an Imagineer. I have always wanted to work for Disney as an Imagineer, and that is why I originally got into engineering. I believe that my MBA will set me apart from other candidates. Eventually I would want to transition into a management role where my MBA would help me move up within the company. No matter what career path I decide to go down, I believe that my MBA will open up more doors and opportunities for me both now and in the future.
What accomplishment, personally or professionally, are you most proud of?
I am most proud of founding my chapter of my sorority on KU’s campus. I became a founding member during my first semester of college and have had the opportunity to take on leadership positions both within my chapter and at the national level of the organization. These opportunities have allowed me to hone my soft skills and become a better leader. The skills I learned will undoubtedly help me throughout my professional career as I take on various management positions.
What is something you still hope to learn, in or out of the classroom?
I believe that learning never stops, no matter how old you get. I am hoping to learn hands-on business knowledge at my internship over the summer with Hilti North America. My past internship experience has been focused on technical engineering, so I am looking forward to gain some business skills that will help me transition my career trajectory from engineering to business. I believe that these business skills have started to be developed in the classroom but will continue to develop throughout my early career.
What else do you think it’s important for the b-school community to know about you?
Even though my undergraduate background is in engineering, I have gained a love for the business world and find it fascinating. Being a member of a dual MBA program at KU has its ups and downs, but it has been the best decision I have made during my college career. It has allowed me to expand my knowledge and have a more balanced education. I would strongly recommend a dual MBA degree to anyone considering it.
Interested in learning more about the bridge program? Contact Jinae Krieshok, MBA director of admissions, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 785–864–6738.