Meet the MBA Class of 2025: Michael L. Owens Jr., University of Texas (McCombs)

Michael L. Owens Jr.

The University of Texas at Austin, McCombs School of Business

“Proud Texan and Round Rocker with a passion for all things automotive, community, and fun!”

Hometown: Round Rock, Texas

Fun Fact About Yourself: I once spent an entire Sunday working on my car, slept two hours, and went to work an hour later. Worth every minute.

Undergraduate School and Major: Prairie View A&M University

Most Recent Employer and Job Title: Business Development Consultant (Intern), The KYO Group

What makes Austin such a great place to earn an MBA? Having traveled the world, I’ve found few cities that rival Austin’s vibrant culture of innovation, creativity, and receptivity to new ideas. Austin isn’t just a hub for diverse art and cultures; it’s a nexus for startups, tech companies, and forward-thinking businesses. This dynamic environment fosters a unique learning experience for MBA students. Plus, with a plethora of restaurants and cultural establishments to explore, networking and relaxation go hand-in-hand. In just over a month, I’ve listed 60-plus establishments I want to visit!

Aside from your classmates and location, what was the key part of Texas McCombs’ MBA programming that led you to choose this business school and why was it so important to you? The defining aspect of Texas McCombs’ MBA program that captivated me is its strong and influential network. This network embodies the essence of Texas and Austin, characterized by collaboration, community, and innovation. As a native Texan and Austinite, I’ve always viewed The University of Texas as an emblem of Texas pride, determination, and creativity. Joining McCombs isn’t just about acquiring an MBA for me; it’s about immersing myself in a legacy that resonates with my core values and intentions. I’m eager to leverage the knowledge and connections gained here to make meaningful contributions to my local community.

What course, club or activity excites you the most at Texas McCombs? There are several exciting clubs and organizations like the Tech Club and Graduate Marketing Network, but I intend to start my own! I plan to create an Automotive Innovation Group to connect future McCombs MBAs to the Automotive industry. With expanding emission regulations (to protect the earth), the integration of electric and autonomous vehicles, an evolving supply chain, and a changing consumer market, I think the brilliant minds at McCombs could positively contribute to current and future problems the industry faces.

What has been your first impression of the McCombs MBA students and alumni you’ve met so far? Tell us your best McCombs story so far.  Everyone is friendly and looking out for each other! I once left my motorcycle helmet in class (I was only going to the water fountain) and 2-3 friends all shouted “Mike! Mike! You left your helmet!” This was only day two of our orientation, so it was surprising and reassuring to know that these strangers were looking out for me!

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: Before deciding to pursue an MBA, I was a Marine Intelligence Officer. Every day I had the opportunity to lead Marines was a big accomplishment. I was fortunate that I dodged an abundance of staff work and I was able to remain in front of Marines for the vast majority of my seven-year career. As I transition from the military realm, I carry forward invaluable lessons from these experiences, ready to apply them in future leadership roles in the business world. Semper Fi!

Looking ahead two years, what would make your MBA experience at McCombs successful? In these next two years, I envision several markers of a successful MBA experience at McCombs. I aim to forge and nurture meaningful relationships, creating a community that will endure long after graduation.  While I value the academic rigor and insights gained from the courses, it’s the stories and memories formed during this journey that I’ll cherish most. Additionally, I’m set on not just launching the Automotive affinity group but also ensuring its continuity to future McCombs racers, I mean, students have the wheel!

What advice would you give to help potential applicants gain admission into Texas McCombs’ MBA program? When it comes to gaining admission to Texas McCombs’ MBA program, resist the urge to echo what you think the admissions team wants. Share your unique story and express your aspirations in a way that resonates with who you truly are. After all, would you genuinely want to be in a place where you can’t be yourself? Not a good time.


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