Update: Fernando is now a Finance Business Partner at A.P. Moller - Mærsk.
Why did you choose the Copenhagen full-time MBA?
At some point in my career, I realised that what really motivates me is to create a positive impact, so I started looking for masters courses in sustainability to be able to get more savvy in that field. Copenhagen was really appealing as it has programmes concentrated in sustainability and it’s a really international and diverse city, which was exactly what I was looking for.
Everybody bikes as well, which is something that caught my attention because in Costa Rica the public transportation isn’t so good. Plus, it’s really beautiful here, the architecture is great and it’s super clean. I’m having a blast, it’s such a nice environment to learn in.
What was your professional background before embarking on your MBA journey?
I started as an offshore financial analyst for an Investment Bank in the US. I stayed there for three years, and I worked in different industries from Oil & Gas to internet.
I then moved to a Real Estate developing company in Costa Rica, where I worked as a financial analyst for around three years. While my job title was ‘financial analyst’, I took on responsibilities of a project manager because I was the ‘right hand’ for the project director. I helped various areas of the business like marketing and operations, I was in charge of the budget, as well as working hand-to-hand with architects, designers and engineers in the developing of new projects – it was a really well-rounded position. I enjoyed it because I like dynamic roles.
What is one piece of advice you would give to those considering an MBA or embarking on an MBA journey?
If you’re considering a full-time MBA, it’s really important to start your application preparation early, especially considering the exams and the tests that you have to take. Get going as soon as you can with a mock test and when you come to your first entrance exam attempt, be aware that it can take more than once to get an acceptable grade.
For people who are starting their MBA I would say learn how to prioritise. It can get overwhelming with the amount of prep-work and you’ll have a lot to do – so it’s worth considering what things you’ll have to spend a little more time on, and what things you’re confident enough to spend less time on.
What’s a quote that you live by?