Executive MBA Mama Megan Thompson From The Simon School Graduates At Top Of Her Class

Megan and her girls, Amelia and Clara, on graduation day!

Last weekend, Megan Thompson graduated from the University of Rochester’s Simon School of Business. Megan is a mother of two who currently works as Director of Product Development at VisualDX, a computer software company. Reflecting on her MBA experience, Megan prepared the following guest blog for MBA Mama. Check it out:

Two years in the Executive MBA (EMBA) program at Simon at the University of Rochester and I’m done! Not only am I done, but I am proud to say that I was elected into Beta Gamma Sigma (BGS) as part of the top 20% across Simon Business School, which includes EMBA, part-time, full-time, and professional MBA programs. Five students were elected to BGS from the EMBA program with the cutoff being a 3.71 GPA or higher.

I later found out that I was somewhere in the top 3 of my class. The school only officially awards the top student, but a few us compared GPAs to try to decipher who was going to get that honor ahead of the ceremony. We had it narrowed down to me and two other guys going into graduation.

Being the only woman in the top 5 was bittersweet for me. When I first found out, I was honored but then I was determined. There were plenty of smart and capable women in my class. Given our class size, we should have had 2 women in the top 5. So what happened? I walked down to the administrator’s office and offered to mentor the next class.

I hope that going forward I can inspire and encourage more women to not only complete their MBA but excel academically. By doing that along with other initiatives, we can change these programs to be more inclusive of female professors, female leadership styles, and female deans.

My 7 year old daughter, Amelia, asked if I got to keep the graduation hood so she could practice. That statement validated why I did this.

I would be remiss if I did not thank my massive support system, specifically my family and my classmates.

My husband has been amazing. We had some single parents in our program and I give them all the more credit. I don’t know if I could have accomplished this without his support. My daughters, who are strong and beautiful, kept me going.
Megan’s daughters!

Our extended family, especially my mom and dad, were always there to help Paul and I with the kids. We are so lucky to have family close by. My classmates, Team 5 (pictured below with their spouses), late nights, laughs, tears, homework, papers…we went through a little of everything and came out stronger for it. I love every single one of you and your spouses!

Curt Balch and Stephanie Straka (married just a few weeks ago, in between class weekends of course!), Jason and Cathy Fox, Salvatore and Marie Timpani, Colleen and Ralph Dandrea, Paul and Megan Thompson.

Megan Thompson (l) with other female EMBA grads: Laura Knapp and Marie Timpani.

To the rest of my classmates, especially the women, whom I will always be indebted to and were a huge part of the Simon experience for me. I feel lucky to be in the class of 2016 and to be part of the wonderful network that we have. Our professors and administrators are right: you can tell our class is different because we are relaxed with each other, we are there for each other, and I hope that continues for the rest of our lives.

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