Many MBA students juggle school and family. The BYU Marriott MBA helps student-parents balance priorities while also obtaining an education that will help them thrive.
BENEFITS OF THE MBA:
- Study/life balance in the program: Like our students, the professors and program administrators share the belief that family comes first. For this reason, BYU Marriott’s MBA program offers a healthy balance of rigorous studies with personal and family time.
- Family friendly
- Empowering: MBA-educated men and women are highly sought after by employers, which empowers our graduates to gain high levels of employment or negotiate ideal working conditions.
- High value: The MBA program is recognized as being very high quality while at the same time being reasonably priced through Church funding. This allows students to graduate with little to no debt while earning a high salary right out of the program.
Students with Children
Wife and three children
BS, business administration
Consulting, teaching, entrepreneurship
Ultimate frisbee, disc golf, exercising, gardening
My education and career definitely had not gone as planned.
I felt boxed in. Every career change I made seemed like a dead end. I’m married and have two kids, and the thought of going back to school was both daunting and exciting.
Choosing to get an MBA may seem like choosing between your career and your family, but it doesn’t have to be. Sure, it requires a lot of thought and discussion with your loved ones. But don’t fall into the “one or the other” trap.
I attribute much of my growth as a father and husband to the BYU MBA program.
Takeaways from class often impact my relationships with my wife and my kids just as much as or more than they will my professional career. The friendships I have made with other families in the program are amazing and lifelong.
I found that juggling school and family is a lot easier than it sounds. I treat school like my full-time job and avoid distractions. As a result, I’m only gone eight or nine hours per day, four to five days a week.
The program has put me on equal footing with other professionals.
It has completely altered my career trajectory. BYU has a strong brand and deep alumni connections. A lot of great Fortune 500 companies from various locations and industries recruit at BYU. I have a good chance of making almost three times what I was making prior to the MBA.
There’s no way these opportunities would be available to me had I not chosen to get my MBA at BYU.
The Best Route for My Family
Husband and three children
Education & real estate
Dancing & reading
After six years of marriage, my husband decided to go back to school for his MBA and applied to BYU. After a couple of months, I presented him with the idea of getting my MBA in the next five to ten years. His response? “Why not get your MBA now while we’re here at BYU?”
I already had enough work experience to discover my strengths and passions. I knew I wanted a career in human resources.
The most challenging part of applying to school was just deciding that this would be the best route for my family.
I was eight months pregnant with our third child when I decided to apply. At first, I couldn’t fathom doing the MBA program with little kids at home. I thought that I needed to be at home with my kids—focused 100 percent on them.
We concluded it may be more important to be available and present in our kids’ lives when they are teenagers and young adults.
I don’t want to be just starting my career at that point in their lives and unable to give them the attention that they need. Coming to that realization allowed me to overcome a mental block and start the application process.
My advice would be to treat the MBA program as a 40- to 45-hour-per-week job. Go to school at 8 a.m., focus on your classes, complete your schoolwork, and go home at 5 p.m. and spend time with your family. There will be various times when you may need to put in a little bit more time during the week, but on average, it is completely possible to treat the program like a job and still have the ability to be present for your family.
I have loved my experience in the MBA program. Everyone is rooting for your success and so willing to help each other out.
Discover & Prepare for an Exciting Career
Wife and three children (had twins during the program!)
BA, advertising, Brigham Young University
Mountain biking, skiing
The most challenging aspect has been juggling all of my responsibilities as a student, husband, and father. On top of that, throw in the time spent on recruiting, club activities, case competitions, leadership opportunities, and everything else. It’s overwhelming and sometimes impossible to do it all. I’ve been pushed to develop an effective system to manage my time and tasks.
I’m grateful for the awesome support system in the BYU Marriott MBA program.
There are family and spouse resources, such as the MBA spouse association (MBASA), which provides support, connections, and fun activities for the whole family. Despite all the stress, we feel like we’ve grown closer as a family and made important friendships that will last our whole lives.
The MBA program has helped me discover and prepare for a career that I’m excited about.
The connections and reputation of the program along with the career management team helped me land an amazing internship and job.
The MBA program is one of the best decisions I’ve made in my life. The program requires a lot from anybody, but for parents, those requirements seem a lot more difficult to balance and overcome. Despite the obstacles and the stress of being in the program, it’s all worth it.
Incredible Opportunities to Grow
Husband and two children
BA, German literature
International business expansion and education
Backpacking, canyoneering, biking, basically anything outside
My career prospects have changed dramatically since entering the program.
The MBA program has allowed me to not only switch from previous roles to HR but also think seriously about future leadership roles.
I became pregnant with my second child shortly after deciding to apply. Though there were moments I doubted, I moved forward with my application.
I felt a strong assurance that this was the right time for me and my family, and I’m grateful I followed those promptings.
I had a baby in October during my first semester in the program. This was possible in large part because my husband was willing to quit his job and stay home with our children during the program. I also had a healthy pregnancy and was able to plan my C-section so that I missed only one week of class. Thankfully, I had a number of incredibly supportive people around me who helped make it happen.
You can do far more than you think you can. Your family will reap the benefits of your hard work and growth in the program.
Don’t be afraid of your own success.
Kristen Van De Graaff
Transformed My Career Path
Husband and one child
BA, teaching social science
Marketing and Human Resources
Baking, boating, audiobooks, quilting/sewing
I thought I’d want to work as a teacher in the public school system for a long time. However, during the course of my MBA program research, I was impressed with BYU Marriott. I knew it would provide a broad set of marketable skills that I could use in either the public or private sectors.
The MBA transformed my professional life from one with limited career paths to one with many options and directions.
I was hesitant to apply because I was afraid that I wouldn’t be accepted, or that I couldn’t handle it, or that I would need to choose between a graduate degree and starting a family.
I overcame that fear with faith. I had faith that it would be okay if I wasn’t accepted, I could rise to the challenge if I was, and I could succeed at being both a mom and a student. In my opinion, the key to a successful MBA experience is finding a balance between stepping outside your comfort zone for growth opportunities and saying no to things that won’t add the value you’re looking for.
To parents thinking about applying, you can do it!
You can be both an excellent student and an attentive parent. For me, the prospect of having a baby during the MBA program was quite scary. But once I decided to make it work—to both start my family and enroll in an MBA program—it’s like my fear washed away. I had faith and determination to make it work, and that carried me through. Increasing your education and expanding your career opportunities will be a blessing to your family.