In this blog students completing their programme, recall their earlier days at the Business School. They reflect on critical moments that have shaped their approaches to learning and share insights from embracing failures as learning opportunities to cultivating genuine professional connections. These personal letters highlight their transformative journeys and offer great advice to incoming students.
Dear Past Me,
Finally, you've arrived at your dream college-congratulations! Your transformative journey has just begun, and I couldn't be more excited for you. As you step into the immersive world of endless opportunities at the business school, there are a few things I want you to keep in mind.
The initial week might seem overwhelming, especially if you are adjusting to a new country, but remember to embrace it all at a steady pace. Breathe, absorb the new environment and relish the sensation of embarking on this incredible journey.
Step out of your comfort zone and connect with those from diverse cultures. Remember, everyone is in the same boat as you. Be open to new challenges and experiences with a positive outlook. A warm smile can bridge gaps and create lasting connections. Every experience, good or bad, is a chance to learn.
Keep celebrating small victories and embrace your mistakes as stepping stones to improvement. Your time management skills will be your lifeline at the Business School, especially as an international student. While it might seem demanding sometimes, the rewards will be well worth the effort you invest.
Above all, believe in yourself, trust the process, and make sure that you enjoy every moment. The days will pass like shooting stars, so seize each opportunity with curiosity. Keep your goals in sight and be ready for the distinctive surprises woven into the program (P.S. Keep guessing the destinations for your upcoming international trips!)
With unwavering support and excitement,
The You Who's Already Been There,
Yogda Kalra (MSc International Management, 2023)
Dear younger self,
I’m writing to tell you how young and blessed you are as you step into this phase of your life. This is going to be your life’s most eventful and challenging year. I’m sure by now you’ve come to realise that dreams do come true, but they come at a cost so always remember to be kind and grateful even when you’re unhappy. Remember that the people around you are facing the same challenges but in a thousand different ways. Try to be there for your family and your community as much as you can.
Every day in this academic year will come with a fair set of opportunities and it’s on you to get the best of them. London is a dream city and it’s a city that tries you in the best of ways. Always try to stay connected with your inner calling. Try to network and connect with people in and through the Business School as that will account for shared learning and growth. I know that’s not one of your weak suits but there could be days you will feel like doing nothing. Don’t let such days take your spirit down. Take it one day at a time and you’ll be fine.
Lastly, the memories you’re going to make this year will be simply incredible so make sure you savour each moment and live life to its fullest. Don’t be afraid of taking risks and asking questions! You got this!
Your older self,
Swapan Bahrani (MSc Economics & Strategy for Business, 2023)
Dear Past Mangala,
As you take your first steps onto the Kensington Campus of Imperial College Business School, you will experience a whirlwind of emotions – excitement, anticipation, and a touch of nervousness. However, do not worry! These feelings mark the beginning of an incredible journey that will shape you into the entrepreneurial and innovative business leader you aspired to become when you first applied to the university.
Through all the assignments and online lectures, just remember to share your thoughts, ask questions, and actively engage with professors and fellow students. Your contributions will inspire others to do the same and encourage class discussions and collaborations.
Remember to brace yourself for challenges. As the old saying goes, when the going gets tough, the tough get going! Every hurdle is a chance to learn and grow. Seek guidance from mentors and lean on your classmates – they are with you on this journey, and their support will be invaluable.
While your academic performance is vital, remember to also take care of your wellbeing. It is easy to stress and lose sleep over assignments and exams. However, when you listen to music, go for a walk and do the things you love to do, you will keep your mind sharp and your spirits high.
Networking events might seem intimidating, but they're golden opportunities to connect with like minder peers and professionals. Be yourself and reach out to many other people – you never know what connections might shape your future.
Stay curious and stay eager. The business world constantly changes, and your desire to learn will help keep you up to date with the latest trends. Embrace the opportunities presented to you and do your best to even surpass your own expectations.
Remind yourself why you came to Imperial in the first place – to make a positive social impact and to be the best you can be. It won't always be smooth sailing, but with your determination and passion, you will come out of this stronger and wiser.
Finally, as the days swiftly turn into weeks and weeks into months, don't forget to celebrate each achievement, no matter how small. Enjoy the journey while it lasts and don't stop making memories.
Future Managla Prasetia (Global Online MBA, 2023)
Stay curious and stay eager. The business world constantly changes, and your desire to learn will help keep you up to date with the latest trends.
Dear Past Me,
Firstly, hats off to you for choosing Imperial College Business School! It's like you aimed for the stars and landed right on the moon. As you took those first steps onto its iconic campus, little did you know the of the rollercoaster of experiences ahead.
The thrill of meeting people from different corners of the globe was simply exhilarating. It felt like a whirlwind of cultures, languages, and stories all coming together in one place.Among those faces are individuals who will become more than just classmates. They'll be your friends, your 3 AM study buddies, and the ones you'll share unforgettable memories with. These are the connections that won't fade with time; they'll only grow stronger, forming bonds that you'll cherish for a lifetime.
Remember the group projects, recall how you believed assembling a team would be like the Avengers coming together? The reality: more like a sitcom cast with diverse personalities, and the ever-present challenge of coordinating everyone's 'ideal meeting time'. Who knew business strategy also meant negotiating between early birds and night owls?
Yet, amid the spreadsheets, SWOT analyses, and simulation games, you unearthed the essence of Imperial College Business School. It wasn’t just about financial models or marketing strategies. It was about shaping visions, honing leaders, and yes, teaching the fine art of surviving 3-hour lectures on corporate strategy.
Thanks to Imperial College Business School, you're in for a global adventure that's beyond your wildest dreams. Within a year, you'll find yourself jet-setting to incredible countries! Whether it's enjoying a cup of espresso in Istanbul or wandering through Singapore's bustling markets, you'll be gathering priceless memories and friendships from around the world—experiences that no classroom can ever provide.
Looking back, I am grateful for that wide-eyed version of myself who stepped onto campus, ready to embrace every opportunity that came my way. It's going to be a year of growth, discovery, and connections that will last a lifetime.
So, dear past self, continue the journey ahead with an open heart and an open mind. Cherish the friendships, relish the challenges, and savour the victories. Your first week was just the beginning of an incredible adventure, and I can't wait for you to see how far we've come.
With excitement and a hint of envy (because, oh, the adventures you're about to have!),
Your Future Jet-setting, Networked, and Grateful Self.
Navdeep Ghothra, MSc International Management
It's going to be a year of growth, discovery, and connections that will last a lifetime.
Dear Me At First Week Of Imperial,
Congratulations on making it to Imperial College! You did it. Celebrate this moment. As you step into the realm of Imperial, remember to cherish each and every moment, every success and set-back, because this was your dream and you worked hard to get here!
Don’t be afraid or intimidated. Your classmates are just as excited, nervous, and new as you are. Embrace the opportunity to meet new people and make new friends. Find a common ground with fellow students. Engage in conversations that go beyond the textbooks. Ask questions about their backgrounds, their interests, and their daily routines. These connections will forge friendships that will last a lifetime.
In this whirlwind adventure, resist the urge to rush through things. Time will fly by, and your journey at Imperial will conclude before you know it. Every moment counts. Relish in the student life, for these years are unparalleled when it comes to learning, upskilling, exploring, and personal growth.
Remember that grades matter, but learning matters more. Prioritise understanding concepts and developing critical thinking. Don’t put all your energy into acing the exam, rather dedicate yourself to understanding and learning the material. Trust that if you invest in the process, the grades will naturally follow suit.
Amid the hustle, make it a ritual to connect with one new person every week. This could be a classmate, a professor, or someone from a different school within the university. As the semesters unfold and familiarity settles in, it's easy to become complacent. However, remember that growth thrives beyond your comfort zone, and these new relationships will enrich your experience.
Venture beyond the classroom. Explore the plethora of educational resources that Imperial College offers. Attend library workshops, digital literacy classes, Inkpath modules etc. Join clubs and socieities as per your interest like the Enterprise Lab, Finance Club, Student Investment Club etc. These activities will enhance your academic journey and broaden your horizons.
Lastly do not forget the sheer luxury of being in London. Make the most of your historic campus and the vibrant city that it is in. Don’t rush to class, leave early and take a leisurely walk through Hyde Park. Don’t shut yourself in your room and study, immerse yourself in the grandeur of the university library and absorb the energy of all the learners around you. London is your oyster, so delve into its culture, theater, and diverse culinary scene.
Embrace this incredible opportunity with open arms, and remember that growth often comes from stepping out of your comfort zone. Your journey at Imperial College London will be filled with learning, adventure, and personal development. Explore, experience, and relish every moment, for it's a chapter you'll fondly reminisce about in the years to come
Your Future Self At Graduation,
Aakriti Jhunjhunwala (Global Online MBA)
It’s almost time! For three months, you’ve been thinking about this moment. Ever since receiving your acceptance letter, you’ve been wondering, dreaming, and hoping about your next chapter at Imperial.
Who will you meet? Will you enjoy living in London? What will you learn?
These questions, and many others, are racing through your head. I know you’re seeking quick answers, but have faith they’ll be answered in time. As hard as it may be, try not to compare your timeline to others, and trust your path will lead you where you should be.
Each of the first few days, weeks, and months will be filled with new experiences. Open yourself to these opportunities and embrace the unknown. Your classmates, like you, are excitedly nervous about the year ahead. Everyone wants to make friends, and although it can be difficult, everyone will be grateful if you take the first step and say hello.
You won’t always know what’s going on, and you’ll have your fair share of culture shock. Rather than trying to fit in, recognise and appreciate the unique aspects of your personality and culture you bring to the table. These characteristics will enrich your and your classmates’ experiences; you live in London, but the international diversity of your cohort will open a world of possibilities.
You’ve earned your spot to study at Imperial College Business School and by being your authentic self, you’ll make this experience your own. Enjoy it, embrace it, and have fun! Imperial is a wonderful place to study, and London is an exciting place to live. You’re in for a fantastic year of academic, professional, and personal growth. You got this!
From your future self,
Kirk Zieser (MSc Climate Change, Management & Finance)
As you set out on your own journey, we hope the words of our students inspire you to navigate your own journey at Imperial College Business School. Here's to creating your own path to success!