This interview is the latest in an Accepted blog series featuring interviews with business students, offering readers a behind-the-scenes look at top programs. And now, introducing Bruna Moreira…
Accepted: We’d like to get to know you! Where are you from? Where and what did you study as an undergrad?
Bruna: I am from Brazil and I lived and studied my whole life there. I studied International Relations as an undergrad at Pontificia Universidade Catolica (PUC-Rio) in Rio de Janeiro.
Accepted: Where are you currently in b-school? What year?
Bruna: I am a first year student at London Business School (LBS). My graduation year is 2018.
Accepted: Why did you choose LBS? How were you a good fit?
Bruna: I was looking for three things when I was researching business schools: diversity, international opportunities and collaborative environment. At first, I did not even look at European schools, and US was my first thought. However, when I came to London to visit my sister (she’s been living in London for five years now) I decided to attend a campus presentation and found out LBS was just everything I was looking for! It is a two year course, which gives you more time to explore opportunities. The class is really diverse – there are 70 nationalities in my class and only 10% are from the UK. London is an easy place to travel everywhere, I just came from South Korea (a trip organized by Koreans in the school) and it is just a 12 hour flight from London. From my home city, it would take me at least 25 hours flying to get there. The students organize trips, and we also have a compulsory international module. I am very interested in different cultures and LBS is providing me a lot of opportunities to explore this. The third important aspect for me is the collaborative environment. As I was looking for diversity, it wouldn’t be very useful if the class was very competitive and not willing to share knowledge and experience with me. More than anything, I wanted the experience to be enjoyable and enriching and not a stressful one. I really loved everybody from LBS I talked to before applying, students are really helpful, honest and approachable. I knew I would feel good at LBS.
Accepted: What is your favorite thing about your program? Is there anything you’d change?
Bruna: My favorite things are certainly the diversity and the location. Both of these aspects combined open so many opportunities to all of us and there are always a lot of activities happening simultaneously. Making choices can be very hard: you keep learning about new industries, new companies, new destinations to travel to… For me it was very important to not be isolated in a small town as I wanted to get work experience outside Brazil and make the most of this experience in terms of international opportunities.
One thing I would change is expanding the campus more quickly. There are already two buildings acquired by the school but not finished yet and space is a challenge. Sometimes we have exams outside the campus, which is not a big problem for me as location is usually close to the school but it would be better to do them always on campus.
Accepted: Looking back at the application process, did you experience any challenges? How did you overcome them?
Bruna: I’ve never done exams on computers, so the GMAT was my first challenge. Exams in Brazil are very different, as an example usually we get at least one hour to do something like AWA, which is double the time the GMAT allows. In my first simulation I think I wrote just one or two paragraphs. I studied for the GMAT only through online courses for about three months while also working full-time and doing some volunteer work. I would stay up with coffee and chewing gum until 4 am almost every day. I had to wake up at 6.30 am to go to work.
About the LBS application process, I always believed in being true to myself. So I just tried to reflect on myself and what I wanted for the future, understand the underlying causes and forces that shaped my career up to that point. Probably what really helped me was that on the research process I was already looking for a school to fit my needs and plan so I did not need to fit myself to the school. In the end I only applied to UK schools and LBS was clearly appropriate for achieving my goals, and I think the admission team could also see that.
Accepted: You’re extremely involved at LBS and even co-founded your own company, Green It Yourself Now! Can you share a little about your endeavors?
Bruna: I am doing a lot of things simultaneously and I am probably crazy! But I run the Green It Yourself Now! Blog with my sister and we are planning its expansion to an online business. I work part-time as a Marketing Intern for busuu, an e-learning company and I am also VP Marketing for the Sports Business Club at LBS.
I really love to connect with people online and share information and all my endeavors are in a way connected to this. I manage the Facebook account for GIY Now and Sports Business Club and also the twitter profiles: GIY Now and SBC.
I confess sometimes it is hard to manage all these activities but I get a lot of support from other people and keeping focused and organized is certainly the key to keep going even at challenging times.
Accepted: Lastly, what are your plans for after graduation?
Bruna: I am really happy that one of my main goals is already achieved: working for a start-up at Old Street Roundabout in London (the “Silicon Valley” here) and I am experiencing a much more flexible and vibrant working environment. I only worked in really big companies in Brazil so this is a very different experience for me. After graduation I plan to work in Tech or Telecom (I had experience in both industries prior to the MBA) but I want to stay in London. Right now I haven’t decided the size of the company or the niche I want to be working in but I am certainly enjoying the start-up environment for now.
Besides this I plan to turn Green It Yourself Now! Into a profitable small business. The aim of the blog is to help people improve their homes, quality of life and contribute to a better environment and we think a small company is suitable for this but we figured out just sharing knowledge is not enough. We have really good content, but it can be time consuming for a reader to apply all our tips. We want to offer a little bit more than tips and help our readers further on improving their homes and saving money on bills.
You can follow Bruna’s journey by checking out her Twitter (@BrunaMoreira87) or by connecting with her on LinkedIn of by checking out her company Green It Yourself Now!. Thank you Bruna for sharing your story with us – we wish you continued success!
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