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Alumni Voices

Alumni Voice
J.J. Price, 2015
Business Development Manager,
SPREAD Co., Ltd. and Earthside Co., Ltd.
Japan
Alumni Voice
Widad Lamallaoui, 2017
Development Project Manager,
Grant Thornton
Morocco
Alumni Voice
Andhika Sarasono, 2017
Digital Marketing Strategist,
PT Digital Marketing Indonesia
Indonesia
Alumni Voice
Fabian Mukanzi, 2016
Lean Management Consultant,
Mitsubishi Fuso Truck & Bus Corporation
Japan
Alumni Voices
Atreya Sridhar, 2016
IoT Application Development Engineer
Japan

J.J. Price, Class of 2015

  • Tell us about what you're doing now.
I am currently part of the corporate strategy division for the holding company Earthside. Earthside consists of five companies in the fresh produce industry with business activities ranging from food production, logistics, distribution, sales, and marketing. Although my responsibilities range across all five companies, my main focus is on the US expansion of our vertical farming business for the company Spread with our newest innovation, Techno Farm.

  • What brought you to DBS?
After working for five years at a Japanese university managing international programs, I wanted to increase the number of future career opportunities and also equip myself with the right tool kit to face more difficult challenges in my professional life.

  • How did your experience at DBS shape or prepare you for your career path?
I believe that I would not be able to handle my current work this early in my life without the experience I gained while at DBS. Although I am still responsible for many tasks and challenges that I have little experience doing, the comprehensive knowledge that I gained from my studies has ensured that I at least know how to find the right answers and then apply them practically in the real world.

  • Share a favorite Global MBA memory.
I was selected to be part of a team for a case competition. This was on top of our normal academic studies and the competition was the day before my accounting final exam. I remember staying up all night to prepare for the competition in Tokyo, traveling to Tokyo then taking a bullet train back to Kyoto immediately after, and staying up all night again to study for the accounting exam. It was a great experience to see how far I could push myself mentally and it gave me confidence that I could face a similar challenge in my professional life.

  • What advice do you have for current or prospective Global MBA students?
Make the most of your time in Kyoto. It is a beautiful city with many things to do and for most people it is a once in a life time opportunity. I would also recommend learning as much Japanese as you can, especially if you want to have a career in the country. It is not an absolute must, but will increase your chances.

  • What are your future plans or goals, professionally or personally?
Professionally, I feel I am on a career path with lots of future opportunities to be put in higher leadership roles in a company that is set up for lots of growth in the coming years. I am planning on moving back to the US to begin our expansion into the US market in the near future.
Personally, I want to continue to grow and learn through many experiences and by facing new challenges as I grow older.
Alumni Voice

J.J. Price
Business Development Manager,
SPREAD Co., Ltd. and Earthside Co., Ltd.
Japan

Widad Lamallaoui, Class of 2017

  • Tell us about what you're doing now.
I am currently working as a Development Project Manager in a large accounting and consulting company. My role is to lead diverse projects with strategic impact.

  • What brought you to DBS?
First of all, what brought me to Japan was the curiosity to discover this land so far from where I have grown up, but also the admiration for how Japanese society has succeeded in reaching high standards in all aspects of life while keeping alive the roots of its traditions.
DBS was an obvious choice for me as it comprised all what I was looking for in an MBA program. The diversity of both students and faculty, the richness of courses centered around sustainability and creativity, the openness to a worldwide view of business and the economy were all reasons that I chose DBS.

  • How did your experience at DBS shape or prepare you for your career path?
Being immersed in a such a diverse environment allowed me to broaden my perspective as I would have never imagined. In addition to that, and as I came from an engineering background, I was able to discover new areas of interest.
My research subject was definitely a strong starting point for my current career. I studied the factors behind strategy-implementation gaps in the context of Morocco. This helped me better understand the internal mechanisms of working teams. I am now in charge of projects aiming to improve the well-being and efficiency of teams and I can confidently say that my thesis journey is helping me in more ways that I’ve thought it would.

  • Share a favorite Global MBA memory
Although sometimes things were busy and intense, especially around the thesis submission period, the feeling of accomplishment after being awarded distinction for my thesis will remain one of the best memories for me.

Adding to that, the way the school’s building is structured provides perfect atmosphere to study, but also great areas to rest and gather with classmates. Most of my best memories were created during gatherings for events, birthdays or for no special occasion.

  • What advice do you have for current or prospective Global MBA students?
At some points, the workload might seem unbearable. Some subjects might seem difficult to grasp especially for someone who hasn’t been exposed to them before. However, if there is something that I remember very well and that I learned more than anything, is that hard work and perseverance always pay off.

When things seem blurred and incomprehensible at the beginning, the idea of « just getting it started » added with a pinch of patience were key.

  • What are your future plans or goals, professionally or personally?
My professional goal is to extend my learning in the field of business development and grow towards strategic positions while improving people's work environment. In a personal side, living in Japan for more than 2 years and making friends from all corners of earth confirmed my passion to discover and be amazed by our differences, and all those surprising similarities. I am definitely willing to feed my soul with travels around the world every now and then.
Alumni Voice

Widad Lamallaoui
Development Project Manager,
Grant Thornton
Morocco

Andhika Sarasono, Class of 2017

  • Tell us about what you're doing now.
As strategist, I work as a digital advertisement consultant and am responsible for developing solutions for clients based on consumer insight, data, and trends. I make reports and analyze data to figure out the best way to promote a product or service. As a Google partner, I mainly work using Adwords and YouTube dashboard tools as well as SEO/SEM/GDN consultation. Current clients: Mitsubishi, Tokyu Land, Daikin, and Nissan

  • What brought you to DBS?
My business school story started in 2014 when I decided I wanted to pursue my MBA degree to set me on a better career path for the future. I attended one of the biggest Japan education fairs in Jakarta called 'Study in Japan,' held once a year. My main goal was to gather information about MBA programs in Japan that provide an international environment. I visited the booths for several schools that offered what I wanted, but DBS stood out the most to me. Especially considering its location in the beautiful city of Kyoto with its great study environment, I was sure that I should spend my 2 years of business school at DBS.

  • How did your experience at DBS shape or prepare you for your career path?
As I work in the digital marketing world now, I always think about how much the elective courses that I chose helped get me where I am today. Courses like e-Marketing introduced me to not only basic theory on why engagement is so important in social media marketing, but also gave me an opportunity to work on practical assignments like creating a digital community on the web for business purposes.

  • Share a favorite Global MBA memory.
There are so many of them, but I still remember the day we started classes. In first semester as we all studied the core subjects together, we had to learn how to work together as well. So many of us came from very different backgrounds and cultures and we had to find ways to adapt and compromise, even for something as simple as deciding a meeting time for group work. Since we all had different habits and communication styles it was a challenge at times, but looking back, it was priceless experience.

  • What advice do you have for current or prospective Global MBA students?
Decide what is your goal from the beginning. What kind of outcome do you want to gain after 2 years of study? Keeping your goal in mind will help you develop ideas for your research and in building your network (I believe that a strong network is one of the greatest asset that a person can have), so you can get the most of the experience as you learn and collaborate as a member of the global community at DBS.

  • What are your future plans or goals, professionally or personally?
I have always dreamed of running my own business, I'm considering starting a Japanese restaurant in Indonesia and Southeast Asia some day. Let's see what happens in the next 5 or 10 years.
Alumni Voice

Andhika Sarasono
Digital Marketing Strategist,
PT Digital Marketing Indonesia
Indonesia

Fabian Mukanzi, Class of 2016

  • Tell us about what you're doing now.
As an in-house consultant, I support departments in identifying potential for optimization (both within direct functions and indirect functions) and support with implementing adequate countermeasures. I therefore get to work across all departments in the company.

  • What brought you to DBS?
Having received a full scholarship to pursue masters study in Japan (from the Japanese government), I had my eye set on getting an MBA. Kyoto was my 1st preference for places I would love to live in Japan. That being said, as a champion of MBA education within the Kansai area of Japan, DBS was the go-to institution for me. The school has a great mix of international students and faculty and, to top it all up, impressive numbers for graduate job placement.

  • How did your experience at DBS shape or prepare you for your career path?
From DBS, I developed business acumen which helped me land a job even before my graduation. Once in the company, I was privileged to be able to shape my own career path in that I was able to decide which team I would join. I settled on lean management consulting (I am a finance major). I feel my decision was the right one as this is what I always wanted to do. My journey in lean management was made possible by the fact that at DBS I was allowed to define my study plan and focus areas.

  • Share a favorite Global MBA memory
A favorite memory of mine would be meeting the lifelong friends I made at DBS. When I came to Japan, I did not know anyone here. As soon as I joined DBS, I met friends whom I could laugh with, hangout with, study with and pretty much count on for anything. I made a network of friends that spreads over more than 20 countries. All this is thanks to DBS for bringing everyone together from miles and miles away and for always ensuring we collaborated with each other.

  • What advice do you have for current or prospective Global MBA students?
Make the most of your time at DBS. Challenge yourself socially and academically. Participate in cultural forums, business case competitions, presentations and anything that will add value to your future prospects. For career progression, in the case that you want to work in Japan, start job hunting early. Attend career fairs from your 1st year to get a feel for how recruiting is done in Japan. And make sure to network and maintain your existing networks. Business school is a defining moment for many in terms of business connections. At DBS you have access to links in over 20 countries easy.

  • What are your future plans or goals, professionally or personally?
I plan to work and live in Japan for a few more years before relocating back to Kenya to make a difference at home. There is so much to learn and borrow from Japan and I will maximize the opportunity
Alumni Voice

Fabian Mukanzi
Lean Management Consultant,
Mitsubishi Fuso Truck & Bus Corporation
Japan

Atreya Sridhar, Class of 2016

  • What brought you to DBS?
The main reason I chose DBS was that all the professors had excellent reputations in their respective fields and that the university is located in Kyoto! My two years at DBS made Kyoto like a second home to me.

  • How did your experience at DBS shape or prepare you for your career path?
Although my main focus at Doshisha Business School was on cross-cultural conflict management with regards to human resource development in Asia, I was able to leverage my IT skills for the final projects in the courses "Business Statistics" and "Marketing Research" where I was tasked with some big data analysis.

Apart from this, I was able to solidify my skills with regards to lean management and workflow efficiency improvement thanks to the "Operations Management" course. This, coupled with the environment where I could interact with students from diverse backgrounds, helped me to get a job at one of the leading LCCs in Japan.

At that company, I was able to leverage all the knowledge I had gained at DBS to design and develop a recruiting system for improving efficiency and managing the entire recruiting process for expat pilots. This experience helped me land my current job where I am part of a team of engineers working on the next generation of IoT solutions.

  • Share a favorite Global MBA memory
Pulling an all-nighter working on a group project for the course "Strategic Management". Our group was tasked with making a promotional video for a prototype product idea. I was tasked with filming and editing the video and also planning how the story would flow. This gave me an opportunity to leverage my knowledge of filmmaking that I gained during my undergraduate studies in India.

  • What advice do you have for current or prospective Global MBA students?
Make the best of your time at DBS. It is important to work hard on the reports and projects, but do not let that stop you from exploring Japan. Please also try to learn the language itself because learning the language gives you better insight into Japanese culture (including business culture). Last but definitely not least, turn in your master’s thesis on time!

  • What are your future plans or goals, professionally or personally?
My current job enables me to work on cutting edge technology and I hope to continue on this line as it facilitates not only my personal and professional growth, but also allows me to add value to the company and customers who use the company’s services.
Alumni Voices

Atreya Sridhar, 2016
IoT Application Development Engineer
Japan

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