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green@work : Magazine : Back Issues : May/Jun 2004 : Special Section

Special Section

A Student's Perspective
A Diverse Set of Perspectives

By Jon Forrester,
Michigan Business School,
University of Michigan

Special Section

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A Diverse Set of Perspectives
Making a Collective Impact
Connecting Business and the Environment
Sustainability on a Large Scale
Opening New Opportunites
Useful Insights About Effective Leadership

The Michigan Business School (MBS) was right for me because of the depth of knowledge and alumni network it offers through the dual degree Corporate Environmental Management Program (CEMP) program and because of its emphasis on action-based learning and its strength in entrepreneurship. Over the past seven weeks, in lieu of second semester classes, I worked full-time for GE Wind Energy on a team with five fellow students to complete a market opportunity assessment. Through this project I was able to apply my coursework in finance, marketing and operations to help address one of the world’s most pressing problems: global warming.

My dream for post-graduation is to start my own business. This summer my partner and I will build our business plan for a sustainability café by designing the space and products, signing suppliers and securing funding. I will also be working with another CEMP student to develop a business plan for Transformers, a student group I co-founded this past year, which is building a trans-disciplinary community of graduate student leaders who are intent on creating a sustainable future through education, creativity and hard work.

Many elements of my graduate experience have had a powerful and positive impact on my life and career, but most significant has been the relationships I’ve built with over 40 CEMP students. This critical mass of intelligent, collaborative and dynamic students has exposed me to a diverse set of perspectives and experiences and has allowed me to boldly test my ideas in a supportive and celebratory environment. Rest assured there is no better place to party with both treehuggers and capitalists. At Michigan, we’re often one and the same. Go Blue (and Green)!


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