Ever Reid spent almost an entire decade looking for the perfect MBA program, but it was worth the wait.
"It's very difficult to find AACSB accreditation with no GMAT requirement," he said.
The online Master of Business Administration with an emphasis in Finance program at Southeastern Oklahoma State University caught Reid's eye for meeting his top criteria: affordable, AACSB-accredited and 100% online.
I was on my Facebook and I saw this advertisement that said $11,880, AACSB accreditation and no GMAT, and I said, 'Oh wow! This is incredible. This cannot be real,'" he explained.
After a bit of research to confirm that he was not dreaming, the Jamaica-born resident of Florida promptly enrolled in his first classes.
"It's never too late to take your degree, and this low-cost, no GMAT MBA program is an AACSB hidden treasure," he said. "It's better to have the AACSB accreditation and not need it than to need it and not have it."
The Online Experience
Reid soon found the online coursework to be just as challenging and more engaging than he had previously experienced in the traditional college classroom.
"An online class is far from being easy," he said. "I earned my first degree in a brick-and-mortar school at the University of the West Indies in Jamaica, and there is more interaction in the online program than in a brick-and-mortar school."
Reid is already seeing the benefits of boosting his higher-education credentials with an MBA. Since completing his last class in June 2019, he has landed high-level interviews in addition to getting his foreign exchange business off the ground.
The MBA coursework gave him a new appreciation for the financial side of running a business. He points to ECON 5133: Management Economics and ACCT 5233: Accounting for Managers for engaging his love of numbers and developing his budgeting skills.
"They are quantitative classes, and I have an affinity for numbers," he said. "In the managerial accounting class, I really enjoyed learning about flexible budgeting and managerial accounting, because it shows you where you go wrong in cost and revenue analysis."
A New Understanding
Aside from learning about hard numbers, Reid added valuable soft skills. The course MNGT 5223: Behavioral Management helped him close some gaps in his communication skills.
"The class explains the difference between male and female communication styles," he said.
Gaining this understanding in both his professional and personal life had Reid reconsider how he spoke to women.
"Men communicate more directly with the intention of competing, building their status and showing they have independence," he explained. "Women, on the other hand, have a more indirect strategy of communication where they build closeness to inform, exchange and support. Understanding this helps me to be a more effective communicator."
In the Behavioral Management class, Reid also learned how to put his ears to work before engaging his voice.
"I used to be thinking about my response while the speaker was saying something," he said. "Now I am trained not to do that because it impacts your effectiveness in listening. Now I just listen to the speaker with a completely open mind and do not think about my response until they are finished speaking."
Praise for Profs
Now that Reid has completed the online MBA program, he is already setting big goals for his immediate future and thinking about what he would like to do when retirement is around the corner. He views the MBA as positioning him for both phases of his career.
"Whatever job I have, my goal is to be in top management, like director, CFO, CEO," he said. "I'm thinking that near retirement I will maybe do some tutoring, be an adjunct lecturer or an adjunct faculty at a university. This MBA will help me to rise up, be an adjunct or do a Ph.D."
Reid appreciates the support he received from his online professors who went out of their way to help.
"My software for my accounting class was going to expire before the final exam, so I asked Dr. Rhonda Richards if I could do it on a Monday," he said. "She adjusted the exam date from Wednesday to Monday to accommodate me. She saved me $190 there."
When technology issues surfaced in his corporate finance class, his professor understood and accommodated him.
"I could not submit one of the assignments on time, and he gave me time to catch up," said Reid. "It shows that the professors are considerate, that they have a certain level of empathy and when they communicate with you, they communicate with you with a lot of respect."
Learn more about the SOSU online MBA program with an emphasis in Finance.
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