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MBA Applicant Voice: Finance Manager Wants Lead Role In Africa Development

George Oriokot is applying for Aston, Warwick and London Business School in the UK

Mon Apr 11 2016

George Oriokot is a man on a mission. He wants to change Africa for the better; to improve its infrastructure, food security and access to legal services and healthcare.

In pursuit of his goals, he’s open to full-time MBA programs at business schools all over the world. Currently, he’s applying to Aston, Warwick and London Business School in the UK, Italy’s SDA Bocconi, the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management and Queen’s University’s Smith school of Business in Canada.

The former Deloitte consultant now works as the Uganda-based finance manager for Dutch development-focused non-profit ICCO. With an MBA, he’s aiming to take his career to the next level and lead development projects in Africa.

What do you hope to gain from an MBA?

The MBA will fill gaps in my knowledge and provide opportunities to network with reputable employers, critical to the attainment of my goals. The career coaching will also be invaluable in identifying my key strengths and areas for improvement.

What are your future career plans?

The vision I have for myself professionally, is to be recognized internationally as an ethical and impactful leader; one who is able to deliver projects in Africa that add value in terms of healthcare, access to legal services and food security.

I would like to go into senior management in consulting, at Monitor Deloitte or McKinsey, or within a development cooperation in the non-profit sector.

My aim is to work outside of Africa for a few years and then return to use my skills and networks to contribute to its economic and social growth.

How do you plan to address the problems that Africa faces?

Insufficient investment in key services, growing populations and increasingly complex national and international contexts have made access to key services either difficult or impossible.

Imagine a blended private-public sector approach to increase financial investment in these areas, increase training and support the regulatory framework which would incentivize service providers to provide quality, affordable and sustainable services.

Why is making a social impact important to you?

I believe we all live interconnected lives and the true measure of one’s life cannot be how much one takes but how much one gives, regardless of their starting point or their context.

I hope in my very small way to return dignity to those who have lost it and to improve the wellbeing of others who are less fortunate than me.

What are the most important factors to you when choosing a business school?

Funding the MBA is the most important factor. Other factors include post-MBA employment, class diversity and the school’s reputation.

What has been the biggest challenge in the application process so far?

Preparation for the GMAT! There’s so much to learn and so little time to do it in.

How have you prepared for the GMAT?

I started preparing for my GMAT in March and I hope to sit it in May. I have purchased GMAT prep texts from the Economist, Kaplan, Princeton and GMAC. I practice about 2 hours a day, 5 days a week, and take weekends off to recuperate and see friends.

How do you plan to fund your MBA?

With savings and gifts, and to supplement this with scholarships.

What advice do you have for others considering an MBA?

I would encourage anyone to do research on what kind of MBA they want, what sort of environment they would like to study in and where. If you understand these things, then selecting a business school becomes easy.