Jeffrey M. Scarborough

Rice MBA for Executives Class of 2016

Hometown (City and State): The Woodlands, TX (born in Houston, TX)

Undergraduate School and Major (Include Graduate School if Relevant): The University of Texas at Austin, M.P.A. and B.B.A. Accounting and Business 

Employer and Job Titles: Anadarko Petroleum Corporation, Financial Advisor 

1.      What led you to pursue an MBA?  I have always wanted to pursue my MBA for both career and personal reasons. Not only will this prestigious degree provide me with an overall understanding of the various aspects of business, but it will prepare me for future leadership roles that require strategic thinking abilities. The networking opportunities are also an important part of the program as you have the chance to meet and learn from hard-working, business-minded people from a wide variety of backgrounds and industries. 

2.      Why did you choose Rice for your executive MBA?  Rice is one of the top universities in the state of Texas and has a nationally-ranked MBA program. Several of my co-workers attended the program in the past, and I had always heard nothing but great things about their experiences. On top of this, Rice is in my home city of Houston, so it made logistical sense for me with my job and family responsibilities. Furthermore, attending a top-notch program such as Rice enhances the quality and quantity of networking opportunities, and this was an important part of the overall decision process.

3.      What has been a highlight of the program?  I have enjoyed all aspects of the program. However, if I was forced to choose one, it would be the great relationships that I have made over the last 17 months. The caliber of students and professors involved in the program is amazing, and I have learned so much from the various experiences. The program is intense, but we are all going through this transformational process together. Not only have I developed some excellent professional relationships, but I have made some lifelong friends along the way.

4.      What has surprised you about the journey so far?  What has surprised me the most is the camaraderie that has developed among the students in the program. No matter how busy it gets, people always have the time to share their knowledge and experience. People encourage and challenge each other during class and in group settings. The MBA experience is a collaborative environment consisting of intelligent, driven individuals that help each other to grow and achieve their goals.

5.      What advice do you have for prospective students?  There are two pieces of advice that I would give to prospective students. First of all, enjoy every moment because the time really flies by. Everyone is busy with life and school, so it is common to feel overwhelmed and stressed and not take advantage of all the learning and networking opportunities. Take advantage of and enjoy all of these wonderful experiences and realize that the program will be over before you know it. Secondly, make sure to plan, plan, plan, and do some more planning. With all the responsibilities in your life, time is extremely limited during the program. It is important to always have a plan, but make sure to remain flexible at the same time. If you start to get behind, it is difficult to catch up. Organization and prioritization are important skills for success.