How the Managerial Finance Immersion Managed to Surprise Me

by Raul Trevino, MBA ’13

Raul Trevino, MBA '13

Having worked in corporate finance for nearly four years at two multinational companies prior to Johnson, I didn’t think there was going to be much more for me to learn about corporate finance. So upon learning about each of the Immersion Program offerings, I wasn’t immediately sold on the Managerial Finance Immersion (MFI) and how it would benefit me.

During my first semester at Johnson, when students typically finalize their Immersion selections for the spring semester, I thought about where I wanted to see myself in the future. I evaluated all the options, talked to second-year students and to the Career Management Center. I made sure I talked to students who had backgrounds similar to mine, and, in doing so, I realized how much I was going to learn in the Managerial Finance Immersion.

I talked to Steve Calk, the MFI Leader, and he told me what to expect in this Immersion – and, more importantly, what a career in corporate finance (post-MBA) looks like. Even though I accumulated a decent amount of finance knowledge during my work experience, I still had ways to go. After all, I did not come across many accounting courses while getting my bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering. MFI was starting to make more sense for me. In this Immersion I could polish my financial skills and learn more about how to solve real corporate finance issues along the way.

Well, I was right about polishing my skills, but I didn’t expect I would learn as much as I have. I’ve learned to think like a CFO, and some classes and faculty members have really pushed me (in a good way). They’ve helped me expand and advance my skills. I’ve learned about many things I was never exposed to during my previous work experience.

Finally, learning all this during my first semester at Johnson allowed me to perform well – and gave me all the tools I needed – during my summer MBA internship. All of the financial modeling and accounting done during the semester paid off during the summer and helped me secure a full-time offer. I look back on where I was only a year ago, and I can’t believe how much I have learned. My corporate finance background was definitely a good start, but the Immersion really set me apart.