Shikhar Battari is studying for a Masters in International Business at The Fletcher School, Tufts University. He believes his MIB gives him more of an international perspective than an MBA.
Shikhar, who is originally from Kathmandu in Nepal, relocated to America for his undergraduate degree at Moravian College in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. This liberal arts college suited Shikhar well as “you got a chance to explore courses that you’d have never thought about taking. Back home in Nepal, you’re confined to picking your ‘career track’ as early as in high school. For instance, if you chose Management track in high school, you couldn’t jump to Science track in college and go on to become a Doctor. I was a Science student in high school but was really not sure if that was what I wanted to pursue.”
For Shikhar the idea of American college education and liberal arts in particular in which you had to take courses in multiple disciplines, ranging from Math to Philosophy, before deciding on your ‘Major’ fascinated him. “So, I initially explore sciences in college but later changed my major to economics.”
After graduating from college Shikhar joined Deloitte as he says he wanted to be exposed to multiple industries and diverse businesses. “Consulting is fast paced and challenging but delivers tremendous learning… Consulting is such a diverse industry in itself that you have consulting firms focused on virtually anything – manufacturers, Government and NGOs, private equity firms or all of these for that matter.”
But Shikhar had a desire to continue learning and says the field that most interested him was international business and cross-border dealings. “Obviously we are all shaped by globalization, but more so were businesses. I was exposed to these emerging dynamics at Deloitte but was hungry to learn more. So I started looking for a program that would give me exceptional business education plus educate me on the changing global context surrounding it.”
The MIB 2012 Group
Shikhar was broad in his search for the perfect business school and looked in the U.S. but also in Europe and Asia; “that is when I came across The Fletcher School's unique business degree – MIB. I did consider a dual degree – MBA plus International Relations, however, MIB had the packaged deal in a shorter timeframe of two years.”
After some research Shikhar learnt that The Fletcher School is the oldest International Relations school in the U.S. and has “a track record of creating top line leaders in governments, multinationals and international organizations throughout the globe which definitely fuelled this burning desire for me to be a part of Fletcher.”
This summer Shikhar worked with Business Call to Action (BCtA) within the United Nations Development Program Private Sector Division. “BCtA advocated and advised multinational firms to come up with ‘Inclusive Business’ models that include base of the pyramid as consumers, partners, suppliers and other parts of value chain. BCtA member companies included bigger firms such as Vodafone, Microsoft, Barclays as well as start-ups like Movirtu.”
The internship was “an excellent practical application of the multi-disciplinary education at Fletcher that comprised of vast arrays of education ranging from corporate finance and valuation of a project to looking at developmental impacts in emerging and frontier nations.”
After graduating Shikhar knows for certain that he will definitely not be far away from pondering and dealing with international issues. With his background in consulting he wouldn’t rule out the chance of returning into consulting but would depend on what the opportunities on offer where.