Mangala Prasetia and classmates at GMBA Capstone


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Mangala Prasetia , a Global Online MBA student, reflects on his experience of the Capstone module. The Capstone takes place over a seven-day period across our South Kensington and White City campuses. Alongside a series of lectures on innovation, design and entrepreneurship, Mangala and his classmates analysed the innovative needs of a large multinational and developed a business case to help the company grow.   

“I learnt what it means to be truly resilient in an academic sense and appreciated the value of diverse perspectives as our cohort collaborated across all our different projects.” Mangala Prasetia, Global Online MBA 

Earlier this month, my Global Online MBA cohort gathered in London from all over the world to complete the Capstone module, a pivotal part of our MBA journey designed to integrate everything we have learnt over the past two years. Over an intense seven-day period, our team logged almost 100 hours of brainstorming, planning, interviewing, and refining our ideas.  

Pre-Capstone week  

In the lead-up to the Capstone, our first task was to form groups of up to six people, consider several problem statements faced by our companies, and conceive a corresponding innovative solution that was both feasible and socially impactful. Forming the group was straightforward for me, as I had the opportunity to reunite with my first-year syndicate group members: Padma, Brandon, Sebastian, James, and Yuko. We had an excellent group dynamic and agreed to put our minds together for the Capstone week (and of course go out and hit the town!).   

Mangala Prasetia and classmates at GMBA Capstone

Day 1  

Arriving on Sunday at Scale Space, located in Imperial’s White City campus, after a 30+ hour journey (not to mention the time difference and jet lag!) from Australia was a challenging start to the week. However, seeing everyone from our cohort once again after a year-long hiatus was truly a highlight, and I had the opportunity to catch up with my peers from around the world over lunch and an opening ceremony of sorts.  

Day 1 was also the day we settled on a project. Our group chose to enhance WHILL’s “mobility for all” mission. WHILL is known for its innovative mobility devices (particularly electric wheelchairs) designed to improve the lives of people with mobility challenges. Our proposed solution was to build on their existing technology to create a solution that would be even more inclusive and accessible.  

Mangala Prasetia and classmates at GMBA Capstone

Day 3  

One of the most demanding aspects of the week was the sheer volume of work and the need for constant iteration. Receiving feedback from multiple coaches was a challenge, as we had to consider various aspects of our solution and balance the technical feasibility, financial costs, and meaningful social impact. In fact, to quote one of our professors, the job of the coaches was “to confuse you!” However, what stood out most was the camaraderie within our group. Our familiarity (having worked together for most of 2022-23) really helped us get through the continuous pivots we had to make. More importantly, we also had a “brainfood” sharing session, where we shared snacks from around the world: Australian biscuits, Swiss chocolates, Singaporean crispy skins, Japanese Kit Kats, and British flapjacks. These snacks encouraged us to take much-needed breaks and helped us bond even more (until the snacks mysteriously disappeared one night!).   

Mangala Prasetia and classmates at GMBA Capstone

Day 5  

After several days of intense preparation for our pitch, we were rewarded with a cohort social at a nearby pub. We were treated to plenty of food and drinks and had the opportunity to unwind and connect with peers outside of our Capstone groups. Through this, we had an opportunity to listen to what other groups had been working on, and in some instances, were able to exchange ideas and offer insights. The diverse backgrounds of the cohort meant that we could leverage the expertise of medical professionals, frequent flyers, and other professionals in testing the viability of our solution, and vice versa.    

Mangala Prasetia and classmates at GMBA Capstone

Day 7  

The week culminated in pitching our solution to an esteemed (and intriguing!) panel of judges comprising a former princess, a former United Nations representative, and a senior employee from a major video game company. It was a nerve-wracking yet exhilarating experience as our team conducted multiple dress rehearsals and prepared for a gruelling question and answer segment. Given we were the first group to present, expectations were sky-high – but we succeeded in the end. We received insightful feedback from the panel, which was invaluable for refining our approach as we put together our final slide deck for submission.   

Mangala Prasetia at GMBA Capstone

The Global Online MBA Capstone was undoubtedly one of the most intense weeks of my life, but also one of the most rewarding. I learnt what it means to be truly resilient in an academic sense and appreciated the value of diverse perspectives as our cohort collaborated across all our different projects. The real-world challenges we all tried to solve did test our limits, and there were certainly more than a handful of instances where we all needed to take a breather. However, this experience just demonstrates the passion and high calibre of Imperial students, with whom I have had the privilege to work. A special thank you to the Imperial College Business School staff who made this week possible – it was truly a fantastic opportunity to make use of the facilities across the South Kensington and White City campuses.