Meet TCU Neeley’s MBA Class Of 2025

Meet TCU Neeley's MBA Class Of 2025

What defines the TCU Neeley MBA experience? Some call it “life-changing,” even from the get-go.

For aspiring sustainability non-profit business owner Valentina Padilla Garza, those in the TCU community make for a life-changing experience. “This may sound like a cliché, but the people I’ve met at TCU have changed my life already. They have not only impacted me academically and professionally, but also personally. TCU brings together people from so many diverse backgrounds who challenge me to see the world differently. It’s an inclusive environment that continues to broaden my perspective,” she says.

The Neeley School of Business at Texas Christian University is right in the lively Dallas-Fort Worth area — a hotspot for business innovation and headquarters of numerous Fortune 500 leaders.

With an average of 229 sunny days per year, the city is home to the enduring Southwestern Exposition and Livestock show, the United States’ longest-running rodeo. TCU is increasingly recognized for its formidable Big 12 football team, the Horned Frogs.

WHY THEY CHOSE NEELEY

Of all of the great business schools to choose from, why specifically Neeley?

Garza chose Neeley because she could customize her courses to align with her interests. “A key aspect of TCU’s MBA is the opportunity to tailor academics to individual post-graduation career goals. For me, sustainability, energy and nonprofits are key areas and sectors of exploration, and I look forward to choosing electives related to them.”

For first-generation MBA Angela Zuniga-Taylor, Neeley was her choice because of the networking opportunities. “TCU has a great focus on networking and meeting executives who will help broaden your thoughts and propel your career. With the help and network of a TCU alum, I submitted my application, went through the interview process, and successfully secured the AT&T Supply Chain Graduate Internship in Sourcing for this upcoming summer. It’s amazing to see such powerful results so quickly after beginning my MBA experience,” she says.

Previously working in Procurement as a Supply-Chain Manager, MBA Joseph Simmons he chose TCU over other programs because of the personal attention the faculty gives to each student to help them succeed.

“I saw this for the first time when I had an introductory meeting with David Stein, Director of Graduate Recruiting and Admissions. Rather than simply sizing me up for business school fitness and aptitude, I felt that David was interested in getting to know me as a person and making my first impression of TCU Neeley inviting.” It wasn’t just the director that made a great impression, however. “After several similar interactions with other faculty members, students and alumni, it was clear that the culture at TCU was one of a kind, and it was exactly what I was looking for in a business school. Having this culture as the foundation of business school truly drives me to explore and embrace challenging experiences with confidence.”

Meet TCU Neeley's MBA Class Of 2025

TCU Neeley MBA students get personal interaction with their fellow classmates, both in and outside the classroom. They challenge and support each other throughout their MBA journey, becoming lifelong friends as well as business contacts. These students are sitting at the Neeley Fountain, an iconic gathering spot outside the Spencer and Marlene Hays Business Commons. TCU Neeley photo

THEIR INITIAL IMPRESSIONS

Simmons already feels a great sense of accomplishment this early on in his MBA. “While it feels that I have accomplished quite a few things as an MBA student, one that I am most proud of is the orientation case study competition that everyone participated in before classes started.”

MBAs had just a few days to come up with their recommendations before they’d present recommendations to executives at Dell. “My team was composed of a range of impressive backgrounds; however, no one had tech industry experience. We were perplexed at the start, but rallied around our curiosity to learn and our collective standards to deliver quality work.” His team presented their solutions, and ultimately won the case competition.“Winning represented not only our ability to read a case and provide actionable solutions, but it showed that each person on our team was capable of adapting, contributing individual strengths to deliver the best outcome,” says Simmons.

Originally from Senegal, MBA Yoro Sidibe felt immediately welcomed at TCU. “I’ve been incredibly impressed by the strong sense of community at TCU. When I was considering joining TCU, I reached out to several alumni, and their willingness to provide essential information and support reinforced my belief that TCU is the right place for me. The sense of support within the TCU MBA network truly makes it feel like a close family.”

MBA Thinh Lam worked at Unilever as a Production Planning Assistant Manager, and she plans to work inside sustainable business development after earning her MBA.

“When you embark on an experience like an MBA program you have your doubts. Will I fit in? Will I learn and survive the program?” She says the TCU community is nothing but welcoming. “I feel more confident every day as I enhance my communication skills, broaden my knowledge, and participate in class discussions and networking activities,” she says.

Meet TCU Neeley's MBA Class Of 2025

TCU Neeley MBA students are equipped with hands-on, experiential learning through B-school’s global network with alumni and corporate partners across industry. On study abroad trips, students work on real-time consulting projects, engage directly with business leaders, forge deep connections with peers, and explore trending topics such as energy sustainability and artificial intelligence. These students are on their MBA Study Abroad trip visiting the ITER Project in southern France. TCU Neeley photo

INTRIGUING COURSES & CONTENT

Lam is looking forward to consulting within Neeley & Associates Consultants and working on real-world consulting projects for a company. “I’ve received valuable feedback from second-year MBA students about the benefits of Neeley & Associates Consultants, such as gaining project and client management skills, applied problem solving, and leadership and teamwork abilities. Neeley & Associates Consultants will help boost my résumé and position me for full-time employment upon graduation,” she says.

The full-time Neeley MBA spans 2 years, with 30-33 hours of core courses, and at least 21 hours in a concentration in either Brand Management, Corporate Finance, Investments, or Supply Chain Management. The curriculum recently got a makeover, with input from over 200 students, faculty, staff, business partners and external resources through a series of discussions, questionnaires and moderated workshops to identify program content adjustments.

Their first year, Neeley MBAs study core material such as finance, statistics, marketing, supply chain, global business, ethics, legal issues and various courses focused on leadership. Their second year, MBAs focus on strategic management and a choice of electives that fit their specific goals.

See the next pages for more on the Neeley MBA Class of 2025 and interviews with the leadership team at the B-school.

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