Why Oxford?

6 minute read

I am beyond thrilled for the coming year at Oxford and all the experiences I am going to have here at Saïd Business School! While applying to the program myself, I came across all these blogs of current students and alums which genuinely inspired me to apply to the program and now it is time to give it back to the aspiring MBA applicants.

Quick Intro about myself – I grew up in Delhi, India in a nuclear household and was raised as an aggressive reader and developed specific interest towards British literature and read Charles Dickens, Emily Bronte, Charlotte Bronte and the likes. My mom who has been a true source of inspiration for me in every regard introduced me to the magical world of Harry Potter and my life had never been the same after that. The Harry Potter books, and its first movie is what fascinated me towards moving to London one day and I so now did.

I come from a family of scholars with some working in my dream industry – banking and that has inspired me to pave my path. I am an engineer by education and over the past 7 years, I had been working in the digital analytics space in financial services industry. I leverage digital data to drive insights on customer experience, conversion rate and marketing channel optimization for different banking products, leading to incremental revenue and cost saves.


Why an MBA? Why Oxford?

The desire to pursue a top-notch MBA was ingrained in me early on and I have built up my professional profile to be ready for the same. I wanted to gain industry experience to do justice to my role post MBA.

At this point, I wish to marry my technical skills with business insights and strategic nous to define the long-term trajectory for a company. Currently, I possess the technical expertise needed to generate insights in all that I deliver but having said that, I would now want to attain the business acumen and strategic decision-making skills in order to become a well-rounded leader. I believe that my domain knowledge combined with an MBA will allow me to leverage the true potential of digital analytics and ensure significant improvement for my company across functions leading to accelerated growth.

I have always aimed for the best; so, I wanted to do my MBA from one of the best-in-class universities out there and Oxford naturally topped my list in numerous ways.

Oxford had always been a dream university for me, as it would be for so many of us. After much introspection during lockdown and work from home times, I got a clearer sense of how an MBA will help me grow further in my career and what are those elements I need from my B-School.

My reasons to choose Oxford were simple. The beautiful thing about Oxford MBA is that the class is extremely international, very intellectual and this place gives you the opportunity to meet and learn from people all over the world who are doing something completely different from what you are. The collegiate system at Oxford is amazing in the sense that it gives you access to a community where you will meet people from all sectors of life – lawyers, physicists, doctors, politicians… (the list is endless) and forge lifelong friendships.


I love how Saïd Business School takes pride in solving the world’s complex problems and the tagline where I was sold was – ‘When the world challenges, Oxford answers’ fascinated me. Things like ‘GOTO’ (Global Opportunities and Threats Oxford) and Oxford’s responsible business practices inspired me enough to be now part of Oxford’s history and traditions.

I also wish to build my career in a location that affords me access to the finest in the finance domain so that I can create an impact that is truly global through my work. Thus, apart from the exposure and strategic decision-making skills that Oxford will provide, its proximity to London will ensure that I can kick start the next phase of my career.

Preparing for the Oxford MBA

The summer post receiving the admit has mostly been about family. I made sure I spent as much time with mom as possible and helped her settle in while I make the big move out of India. Apart from this, I connected 1:1 with many of our incoming cohort. Oxford Saïd has done an excellent job creating that Slack group for the entire cohort for us to connect with each other many months in advance.

It always leaves me in awe of the immense diversity of our class and talking to them even for ~30mins provided me with so much perspective that I try to learn from their experiences.

To also truly prepare myself the Oxford MBA, I went to the best bet – The Alums. I connected with some students from the previous cohorts and learnt about their time here. I talked to them about the electives they would recommend, the pubs that had the best food, the formals, things to look out for, etc. Also, there have been multiple meetups in India where we got to connect with our classmates months before the classes starting and talked about our life and journey to Oxford. I think doing these things made me better prepared from the journey.

What do I expect to gain from the Oxford MBA?

The Oxford MBA is truly a once in a lifetime opportunity. Professionally, I’m looking to pivot into product management or consulting to explore different industries and geographies with banking being my preferred industry. As I am still at an exploratory phase, I wish to gain from the Oxford MBA to get better sense of what I want my career to look like by doing different courses and learning from the experiences of people from these two backgrounds.

I’m also very excited to use this opportunity of having a diverse class and build lifelong relationships with my classmates and wider Oxford ecosystem.


What are you most looking forward to from the year ahead?

  • Really excited to have reading/discussion sessions at the beautiful Oxford Bodleian Library and take part in different events of the MBAT held in HEC Paris in the summer of 2023
  • In terms of labs and OBNs (Oxford Business Networks), want to explore and get involved in Creative Destruction Lab, Wine Club, Oxford Women Alliance, Consulting & Finance OBN, etc
  • Lastly, I am really looking forward to soaking in all the breathtaking scenery Oxford has to offer and the Matriculation Ceremony – a ceremony where you are ‘officially’ enrolled into the University of Oxford. Dressing up in the traditional academic sub fusc and walking into the Sheldonian theatre to experience this magical moment is something that I am waiting for.

What advice do you have for those applying to the programme?

  • Introspect, Introspect and Introspect! Take out some good time to reflect and understand your profile in detail, where you are currently in your career, where you want to be and how can an MBA bridge this gap
  • A school’s innate culture and understanding if it is the right fit for you is very crucial as the brand will stick to you for life. So, research thoroughly about the school and the MBA program and see if it aligns to you personally and professionally
  • Talk to alums and current students to get their perspective of Oxford MBA. This step would really be an eye-opener to all the questions you might have
  • If you get a chance, do not miss visiting the campus!
  • Lastly, I would not have been here had it not been for my family, friends and mentors. So, keep them close, talk to them about what you are looking for and as they are the ones who know you better, you will receive some valuable feedback!