Ross | Mr. Automotive Compliance Professional
GMAT 710, GPA 3.7
Wharton | Mr. Digi-Transformer
GMAT 680, GPA 4
Stanford GSB | Ms. 2+2 Tech Girl
GRE 333, GPA 3.95
Stanford GSB | Ms. Healthcare Operations To General Management
GRE 700, GPA 7.3
Chicago Booth | Ms. CS Engineer To Consultant
GMAT 720, GPA 3.31
Kenan-Flagler | Mr. Engineer In The Military
GRE 310, GPA 3.9
Chicago Booth | Mr. Oil & Gas Leader
GMAT 760, GPA 6.85/10
Stanford GSB | Mr. Seeking Fellow Program
GMAT 760, GPA 3
Wharton | Mr. Real Estate Investor
GMAT 720, GPA 3.3
Cornell Johnson | Ms. Chef Instructor
GMAT 760, GPA 3.3
Harvard | Mr. Climate
GMAT 720, GPA 3.4
Wharton | Mr. New England Hopeful
GMAT 730, GPA 3.65
Berkeley Haas | Mr. Bangladeshi Data Scientist
GMAT 760, GPA 3.33
Harvard | Mr. Military Banker
GMAT 740, GPA 3.9
Ross | Ms. Packaging Manager
GMAT 730, GPA 3.47
Chicago Booth | Mr. Private Equity To Ed-Tech
GRE 326, GPA 3.4
Harvard | Mr. Gay Singaporean Strategy Consultant
GMAT 730, GPA 3.3
Cornell Johnson | Mr. Electric Vehicles Product Strategist
GRE 331, GPA 3.8
Columbia | Mr. BB Trading M/O To Hedge Fund
GMAT 710, GPA 3.23
Columbia | Mr. Old Indian Engineer
GRE 333, GPA 67%
Harvard | Mr. Athlete Turned MBB Consultant
GMAT 720, GPA 3.4
Ross | Mr. Civil Rights Lawyer
GMAT 710, GPA 3.62
Stanford GSB | Mr. Co-Founder & Analytics Manager
GMAT 750, GPA 7.4 out of 10.0 - 4th in Class
Cornell Johnson | Ms. Environmental Sustainability
GMAT N/A, GPA 7.08
Cornell Johnson | Mr. Trucking
GMAT 640, GPA 3.82
Ross | Mr. Low GRE Not-For-Profit
GRE 316, GPA 74.04% First Division (No GPA)
Harvard | Mr. Marine Pilot
GMAT 750, GPA 3.98

Getting An MBA In China: An American In Shanghai

MBA candidate Kevin Shimota speaks about the Innovate China competition

MBA candidate Kevin Shimota speaks about the Innovate China competition

Why did the MBA student cross the Pacific?

Hint: it wasn’t just to get to the other side.

Kevin Shimota, a former supply chain manager for Boeing in Seattle, is now in Shanghai almost halfway through his 18-month MBA, and he’s planning to continue his career in China when he graduates.

In Shanghai, Shimota breathes polluted air, in a country where people speak one of the hardest languages in the world to learn, and where, according to Forbes magazine, doing business is more difficult than in Greece, El Salvador, or Guatemala. It’s just what Shimota was looking for.

“I was fortunate to know what I wanted,” says the 26-year-old Washington State native. “I need something big.”

SEARCHING FOR THE STEEPEST LEARNING CURVES

One definition of “big” is starting an MBA program at a respected institution such as China Europe International Business School (CEIBS) without even knowing what a balance sheet is.

“I had no idea, man, I just knew nothing,” Shimota confesses. But it’s the state of knowing nothing that Shimota has thrown himself into over and over, around the globe, immersing himself in new environments that offer the steepest-possible learning curves and the exciting novelty of different worlds. He applies a stepping-stone strategy to his education and career goals, trending ever forward and upward, but with some striking lateral hops and surprising leaps. College Latin class to post-genocide Bosnia? Data entry at Onvia straight to international supply chain management at Boeing?

No matter which step he’s reached, you can bet Shimota will have talked his way into it, talked his way through it, will talk his way out and end up far ahead on his journey of personal and career development.

Shanghai's Pudong district

Shanghai’s Pudong district – Wikimedia Commons photo

Words do not fail Kevin Shimota. They pour forth like the Yangtze. The language, however, may vary. He speaks English, Spanish, French, German, and Mandarin.

Shimota grew up in Bellingham, Washington, “a hippie town where everyone does way too much of what just became legal there,” he says. “A great place to grow up. Just absolutely beautiful.”

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