Vikas Gowda

Name: Vikas Gowda

Program: Full-time MBA

Concentration: Student-Structured Option. I am not going to have a specific concentration, but I will select electives that are more towards the banking and finance areas.

Current Employer: Full Time MBA student at UNC Charlotte.  Currently looking for opportunities in the Financial/Real Estate industry.

Anticipated Graduation: Spring 2020

Undergrad Institution: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill - Mathematics

Favorite Place in Charlotte: Benny Pennello‚Äôs

Hometown: Frederick, Maryland

Dream Job: My dream job would be one where I can combine my entrepreneurial mindset with the various skills that I developed when I was a professional athlete.

Master of Business Administration

Why did you choose the Belk College MBA over others?

When I was thinking about where I wanted to get my MBA I was living in Phoenix. I grew up in Maryland and went to college in North Carolina. Being closer to my family was important to me because I had lived so far away for a long time. During Thanksgiving break, I spoke with many family members that have either attended UNC Charlotte or lived in Charlotte, and they had nothing but great things to say about the area and school. After doing some research about UNC Charlotte, I really liked the flexibility and diverse selection of concentrations the MBA program offered. Additionally, Charlotte is one of the fastest-growing areas in the country. So many businesses are moving into the area. It was for all these reasons that I felt like I could obtain a high level and well-rounded education.  

How has being a leader on an international stage related to your studies as an MBA student and athlete?

Being humble and honest with yourself is something that really helped me later in my athletic career. In order to improve you have to accurately identify areas of weakness. This realization helped me better focus my attention on deficiencies that could drastically help me in the long run. Additionally, patience is also a vital skill. I learned that small incremental improvements over a long period of time were the best ways for me to master a skill. This is the same approach that I have been using in the MBA program. Most of the subjects are new to me and complex. I know that I will not master a topic overnight. However, I do know that I have the discipline and dedication to overcome these challenges.

What activities are you involved in when you are not working/studying?

My undergraduate degree is in Mathematics. When I was living in Phoenix, I used to tutor high school kids in math. After I moved to Charlotte, I started volunteering with Heart Math Tutoring and I help students at a local elementary school. 

What have you learned in the MBA program, and as an Olympian, that has best prepared you for your career?

Confidence is something that I feel will greatly help me in my business career. After competing in four Olympics, I know that I have the abilities to perform at a high level. Regardless of the challenge, I am confident that if I am patient and put in the work, I can achieve my goals. This is the same mindset that I will be using in the MBA program and later in my business career. 

How would you describe the Belk College of Business to someone considering a master's degree?

My experience with the Belk College of Business has been very positive. I was not a big fan of school in general when I was younger, and I never saw myself going back to school for a graduate degree. With that being said, I have really enjoyed my time so far and I have a newfound appreciation for education. Something that has stood out to me has been the quality of the professors. They all have valuable real-world experiences and their main concern is imparting knowledge that will be useful in the corporate world.