CK Chua

CK Chua

Two-year MBA '17

Age: 27
Hometown: Manila, Philippines
Education: Bachelor of Science, Ateneo de Manila University
Prior Employment:

Business Development Manager, Citi
Deal Manager, Investment Banking & Corporate Finance, BDO

Why I chose Johnson

Traveling halfway across the world, I felt that Johnson at Cornell has the brand that everyone truly respects. I like the fact that we’re given freedom to explore interests through various electives and other Cornell schools we can cross-enroll in.

My goal is to transition into a different function and industry. Johnson’s Immersion Program provides a good background prior to my internship.

Johnson students are very passionate people that have the tools to succeed in any field we go into yet are still very down to earth and approachable.


August 06 2015

Home 8,000 Miles Away

After a short layover in Hong Kong and a 15-hour flight, I am finally in New York City. It seemed just like yesterday that I received that fateful “Yes” from the Johnson School at Cornell University. How time flies. I decide to spend only one night in New York City catching up with friends knowing that I will probably end up in the city quite a few times over the next two years for various school and recruiting activities. I took the local commuter bus the last two times I visited Ithaca from New York City, but this time I decided to take Cornell’s Campus-to-Campus (C2C) Executive Coach Service. Although more expensive, I figured that commuting with three large pieces of luggage would be difficult given some routes would require me to change busses.

The night I moved into my apartment, I bumped into a Johnson alumnus who was moving out of his apartment and returning to his home country. We chatted about several topics ranging from his experiences, recruiting tips, and things to do in Ithaca. At the end of the night, I had a new friend that offered items he was going to leave in his apartment for the landlord to dispose of. I automatically crossed of an ironing board, an iron, plates and utensils off my “To Buy at Walmart” list.

Car stuffI decided to rent a car for my first four days in Ithaca to run errands and get my apartment established. Because of the jetlag, I ended up sleeping only about four hours and decided to visit Walmart (which is open 24-hours!) to start my home shopping. I literally spend the next 12 hours going back and forth from Walmart and my apartment shuttling items purchased for the house. For lunch, I decided to drive to the newly revitalized Downtown Ithaca Commons to try the much raved about Collegetown Bagels (CTB); it not disappoint. Good thing CTB has a location near College Avenue, a quick five-minute walk from Sage Hall.

The following day, I explored another establishment that all Cornellians I have spoken with raved about – Wegmans. I was absolutely stunned by its expansive size. I have visited Whole Foods stores before but Wegmans in Ithaca is layout-friendly and has better pricing. The store offers great selection especially when it comes to fresh produce as well as an excellent cooked food section - great for those nights when I am too tired to cook at home.

MacGraw TowerOver the next few days, I drove around downtown Ithaca to familiarize myself with the area and check out restaurants and bars. I eventually land atop Ithaca’s East Hill where Cornell University’s stunning campus lies. Driving around the hilly campus does not do it justice – I would rather walk and bask in the sunlight. I eventually find a parking spot, start walking the campus, and find myself drawn to the iconic McGraw Tower. I have lived my entire life in an urban setting and seeing the greenery everywhere I walk is very refreshing. A short walk later, I arrived at Sage Hall and proceeded to have a chat with Judi Byers, Executive Director of Admissions & Financial Aid at Johnson. Coming from the “other side of the table,” Judi and I have a great chat about everything admissions. As an applicant the whole admissions process can sometimes be so mystical. It was eye opening receiving her thoughts on a process that thousands of people endure each year.

Sage Hall at this time of the year feels so empty, mostly because the 2nd year students are completing internships. I’m sure once late August rolls in, Dyson Atrium will be packed. I sit down in the middle of Atrium to appreciate the beauty of the building; a building that is 8,000 miles away from Manila, that I now call “home.”

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