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MBA Program Student Spotlight: Bre Otero

By on October 5, 2017 in ACU Programs, Student life with 0 Comments

Bre Otero, ACU MBA Student

Bre Otero always felt called to be a leader. To achieve this, she also knew she wanted to earn a graduate degree, but she wasn’t sure when and how she could fit it in.

After Bre earned her bachelor’s degree in business administration in 2011 (from University of North Texas), she worked in her field for a few years. When she was looking for a career change, she found a marketing position at Abilene Christian University’s Dallas campus.  Once she became familiar with ACU’s programming and mission, she knew she was in the right place for not only a career, but also to earn her MBA.

“I love the Christian aspect of [the education],” she said, explaining that while she has a strong faith and grew up in the church, she hadn’t yet experienced a faith-based education. “I was really curious how [ACU] could connect faith and education and how it applies to the workplace.”

Real-World Education in Real Time

When you attend an MBA program while working in the field, you can apply immediately the principles you’re learning. Although she’s set to graduate in 2018, Bre has already benefited from learning new perspectives on leadership and organizational behavior, two of her favorite topics.

“I feel like I’ve become a better colleague and that I am better prepared to be a leader. I’ve developed a different understanding of people than I would have had it not been for these classes,” she said.

It’s more than just lessons and learning from a textbook, though. Bre says the online discussions have been engaging. A faculty member may ask one question, but it leads to others.

“I love going back and forth with classmates about marketing,” she said, adding that she and other students get to share real-world experiences as it relates to how the course material is proposed. She loves the “different points of view from from all over” the career map.

Online classes have led Bre to real-life friendships, too.

“I’ve met one of my best friends [through the program],” she said, adding when they discovered they live 20 minutes apart, they started getting together to do homework, which led to going to dinner and church together.

Bre says that meeting people so deeply rooted in faith has been inspiring and motivating.

“It helps me feel more connected with my own faith. It’s great to have people to pray with me, who pray for me,” she said.

Taking a Leap of Faith

Bre, like many other masters-level students, returned to the classroom after many years away and had questions about how well she’d do when she started classes. However, now she advises non-traditional students like her not to be scared of this transition. She’s found that ACU faculty members and advisors “are in tune with our busy lives.” She says, “They have compassion. They have tips and strategies on how to organize our time.”

The work-education-life balance has been manageable for Bre. While she does most of her school work at home, she’s also able to find pockets of time throughout her work day, such as during lunch breaks, to do some readings or respond to class discussions.

The flexibility of the online MBA program also allows Bre to continue with one of her favorite pastimes: travel. Her parents split time between Colorado and Florida, and she loves being able to visit them and other relatives for a week or so at a time.

Speaking of family, Bre will be the first in hers to earn a master’s degree. She’s ready to make them proud.

And she’s glad to have the support of her new ACU family.

“Take advantages of the resources ACU provides; talk to your advisors,” she said. “You’re never asking a question to the wind.”

If you’re like Bre and want to earn your MBA online in a supportive Christian environment while also continuing to work in your field, contact us for details on how to get started.

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