Geoff Vernon

MBA for Professionals Class of 2014 – Weekend

B.S.Ch.E., Chemical Engineering, Texas Tech University
Sr. Reservoir Engineer – Business Development, Southwestern Energy

I spent four years working for BP before moving to Southwestern Energy in 2011. I had worked for Southwestern for a little over a year when I began my MBA at the Jones School.

Once I decided that a professional MBA program was the best choice for me, I only considered the Rice and Texas professional programs in Houston. I chose Rice for three main reasons: the unique Rice campus experience – on site classes, complete MBA experience, and access to faculty and events; a comfort level I immediately felt with the Rice students and staff and overall program fit; and personal relationships and mentorships I had previously developed with current and former Rice MBAs.

Immersion helped to establish expectations for the program – it demonstrated the time commitment required and gave me the confidence I needed to persevere through the first semester. It was challenging and at times exhausting, but as I look back on it now it is something that I will remember fondly.

My MBA experience has already had a positive effect on my job. Senior management was heavily involved in the approval of my request to attend the Jones School which led to a number of very positive discussions about my future career development. Since then, they have continued to follow up on my progress and to challenge me with increased responsibilities and exposure.